BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
1. Field of the Invention
The present invention is a climate-controlled glove for sporting activities, such as a batting glove. The glove is preferably made of leather with an inner layer of a climate-controlled material, such as polyester, used to insulate the body heat of the user in cold weather and keep the user's hands dry and comfortable in warm weather.
2. Description of the Prior Art
Numerous innovations for sporting gloves have been provided in the prior art that are described as follows. Even though these innovations may be suitable for the specific individual purposes to which they address, they differ from the present invention as hereinafter contrasted. The following is a summary of those prior art patents most relevant to the invention at hand, as well a description outlining the differences between the features of the present invention and those of the prior art.
1. U.S. Pat. No. 6,141,801, invented by Helenick entitled “Thermal Glove”
The patent to Helenick describes a thermal glove fitted to a human hand having integrated with a body of the glove a thermal, gel-filled pack. The gel pack includes a sealed bladder constructed of flexible, durable material resistant to heat and rupture. The bladder encloses a thermal gel adapted for repeated heating and cooling, such as by microwave exposure or refrigeration. The gel retains and transmits heat energy or cold to the hand of a wearer and is repeatably rechargeable. In preferred aspects of the invention, the gel pack is removably placed within a pocket integrated with the body of glove and adapted to removably receive the gel pack. The pocket may include a closure to secure the pack within the pocket. In other preferred aspects of the invention, a technical glove is provided incorporating a thermal gel pack and further providing a support cuff extending up the forearm of the wearer for comfort, prosthetic and/or injury preventive use by technical workers, such as computer users and laboratory workers.
2. U.S. Pat. No. 5,620,621, invented by Sontag, entitled “Glove Having Heating Element Located In The Palm Region”
In the patent to Sontag, a heated glove includes a glove body having an outer shell and an inner liner conforming to the shape of the glove body. The inner liner defines a hand receiving portion and includes a palm side and an opposing back side. The hand receiving portion has a width and a length and an opening for receiving therethrough a hand of a glove wearer. The palm side of the inner liner includes a region that lies adjacent the area substantially between the digital/palmar creases and the distal palmar creases of the palm of the glove wearer. A heating element is disposed at the region and substantially spans across the width of the hand receiving portion. A source of energy energizes the heating element. A seal substantially seals the opening during use.
3. U.S. Pat. No. 5,187,814, invented by Gold, entitled “Glove With Attached Heater Pack”
The patent to Gold describes a heated garment such as a mitten, glove or sock, for heating at least a portion of the body part with a heater pack. The mitten, glove or sock covers at least a portion of a body part and has at least one opening for insertion of the body part. A chamber assembly is coupled to the inside of the garment for creating an elongated chamber in the garment accessible through the garment opening. A pocket assembly is coupled to the garment for receiving the heater pack and is adapted to be removably inserted to the elongated chamber. Inserting the pocket assembly with the heater pack into the elongated chamber of the garment transmits heat to the wearer's covered body part in an efficient fashion without unnecessarily restricting mobility or increasing bulkiness.
4. U.S. Pat. No. 4,742,579, invented by Dunford, entitled “Ski Glove”
The patent to Dunford describes a glove covering for use in winter sports for protecting a hand against cold weather, comprising an outer glove shell which includes a finger section, thumb section, palm/wrist section and pocket for a flexible heater pack. Pocket members are attached at the finger and thumb sections to allow insertion of a user's fingers and thumbs within the pockets. The palm/wrist section of the shell is open and provides a pocket structure for holding the heater pack in an insulated location to retain generated warmth at the contained glove or hand. A single glove structure is also shown with a heater back secured within a pocket to provide a heat source to the wearer.
5. U.S. Pat. No. 5,035,003, invented by Rinehart, “Liquid Heat Transfer Glove”
The patent to Rinehart describes a glove or glove lining which includes a bladder partially filled with a heat-transferring liquid. The bladder is contained within the glove shell and may be bonded to the glove lining. A pocket within the glove and preferably in the wrist area of glove contains an exothermic or endothermic chemical pack. The pocket and chemical pack are sufficiently close to the bladder to heat or cool the liquid in it. The heated or cool liquid is circulated from the wrist area to the fingertips area of the glove by gravity and by natural hand motions of the wearer's hand. This transfers the heat or coolness of the liquid through the bladder ultimately to the adjoining tissue of the hand.
6. U.S. Pat. No. 5,050,596, invented by Walasek et al. entitled “Reusable And Microwavable Hot Or Cold Therapy Mitt And Method Of Manufacture”
The patent to Walasek et al. describes a reusable and microwavable hot or cold therapy mitt for a user's hand which has a bottom laminate, a first pocket containing a gel, a middle laminate being positioned above the first pocket, a second pocket being provided with an open air space for receiving the user's hand above the middle laminate, a layer of open-celled material being positioned above the second pocket, a layer of insulative wadding being placed above the layer of open-celled material, a third pocket being provided with dead air space for additional insulating above the layer of insulative wadding, and a top laminate being positioned above the third pocket. A strap fastens the therapy mitt securely on the user's hand. A method is also disclosed for manufacturing the therapy mitt. The bottom, middle and top laminates each have outer peripheral edges that are bonded together by a radio frequency (RF) heat-sealing step with outer peripheral edges of the layer of open-celled material and of the layer of insulative wadding.
7. U.S. Pat. No. 6,055,670, invented by Parker, entitled “Breath-Heated Insulated Glove And Associated Method”
In the patent to Parker, an insulted glove includes a bladder having an air chamber defined therein. The insulated glove also includes an inlet valve which is in fluid communication with the air chamber. The insulted glove further includes an outlet valve which is in fluid communication with the air chamber. The air chamber of the bladder has a number of baffles positioned therein so as to direct a flow of air from the inlet valve to the outlet valve. The insulated glove also includes an inner lining and an outer liner with the bladder being positioned therebetween. Moreover, the insulated glove includes an insulation layer disposed between the bladder and the outer lining. A method for warming a hand of a user is also disclosed.
8. U.S. Pat. No. 4,950,868, invented by Moss et al. entitled “Heated Gloves”
The Moss et al. invention provides heated gloves. A battery saver circuit applies heat with a temperature responsive pulse width modulation that changes the duty cycle at which heat is applied to the glove. The battery saver circuit is part of a battery pack which is mounted on the back of the glove. A reflective foil is contained within the glove for directing heat toward the wearer's hand.
9. U.S. Pat. No. 4,764,665, invented by Orban et al., entitled “Electrically Heated Gloves”
The patent to Orban et al. describes a heated glove which includes an electrically heated woven fabric in which the fabric has been coated with electrically conducting metal to enable its use as a heating element. The fabric heating element is in the shape of the front and back of a hand with the front and back being electrically connected together only at the tips of the fingers, and is disposed between inner and outer insulating fabric layers.
10. U.S. Pat. No. 4,535,482, invented by Spector et al., entitled “Heated Glove”
In the patent to Spector et al., a heated glove utilizing a hand warmer is provided and consists of an inner layer of insulated material, a middle layer of waterproof material and an outer layer of leather material. The inner layer has a sealable top pocket to hold the hand warmer and five ducts for allowing heat to travel from the hand warmer to top of each finger tip of the hand.
The prior art patents noted above largely entail features such as: heated gloves for therapeutic or rehabilitative purposes; heated gloves that are of a mitten style and not used for precision tasks; gloves that are breath-heated; gloves heated via battery means; gloves heated via electrical means; and various devices designed to heat the fingers or fingertips in particular.
In contrast, the present invention is a climate-controlled batting glove made of leather with an inner layer of a climate-controlled material, such as polyester. The pre-existing glove is sewn closely to a glove made of the climate-controlled material, with the two gloves working as one. However, there is a separation at the base of the palm where a fastening means secures the gloves to one another. The user can easily insert and remove a heatable material such as a thin gel, in the shape of the palm. The gel is secured within the layers by stitching the palm of the glove to outline the size and shape of the gel. Along with the fastening means, this prevents the gel from shifting during usage. The invention also features a carrying bag to insulate heat, constructed of the same climate-controlled material used for the inner layer of the glove.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
As noted, the present invention is a climate-controlled glove for sporting activities, such as a batting glove. The glove is preferably made of leather with an inner layer of a climate-controlled material, such as polyester, used to insulate the body heat of the user in cold weather and keep the user's hands dry and comfortable in warm weather.
The glove is constructed by forming a pre-existing batting glove with a glove made of the climate-controlled material, with the two sewn closely together. The two gloves work as one but allow for separation at the base of the palm. At this point, a fastening means, such as hook and loop or button, secure the gloves to one another.
This enables the user to easily insert and remove a heatable material in the shape of the palm. Such may be in the form of a thin gel or similar material, thin enough to not affect the traditional usage of the glove, and provide additional padding for the user. The gel-like material is secured within the two layers by stitching the palm of the glove to outline the size and shape of the gel, which, along with the fastening means, will prevent the gel from shifting or moving during usage.
The invention is also accompanied by a carrying bag that serves as an insulator of heat as well as a protector against dirt and other hazards. The bag may be constructed out of the same climate-controlled material used for the inner layer of the glove and will be secured with a fastening means, such as a zipper, snap, or other device.
In light of the foregoing, it is generally an object of the present invention to provide a product that may be used in a variety of sporting activities.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a product that insulates the body heat of the user in cold weather.
It is also an object of the invention to provide a product that keeps the user's hands dry and comfortable in warm weather.
It is an additional object of the invention to provide a product that accomplishes the aforementioned purposes without hindering the user's ability to perform in the sport activity in which it is used.
It is a further object of the invention to provide an item that may be constructed of a variety of previously-existing materials that are cost-effective and convenient for the purposes of manufacture.
It is an additional object of the invention to provide an item that may be produced in a variety of sizes to accommodate users of various ages.
Finally, it is an object of the present invention to provide an item that is durable and that maintains its effectiveness for extended periods of time.
The novel features which are considered characteristic for the invention are set forth in the claims. The invention itself, both as to its construction and its method of operation, together with additional objects and advantages thereof, will be best understood from the following description of the embodiments when read and understood in connection with accompanying drawings.