Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS20060053527 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/227,273
Publication dateMar 16, 2006
Filing dateSep 14, 2005
Priority dateSep 14, 2004
Publication number11227273, 227273, US 2006/0053527 A1, US 2006/053527 A1, US 20060053527 A1, US 20060053527A1, US 2006053527 A1, US 2006053527A1, US-A1-20060053527, US-A1-2006053527, US2006/0053527A1, US2006/053527A1, US20060053527 A1, US20060053527A1, US2006053527 A1, US2006053527A1
InventorsRobert Schneider
Original AssigneeSchneider Robert E
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Modular hat
US 20060053527 A1
Abstract
Systems in accordance with the present invention can include hats having a base and one or more layers removably connectable with the base and/or one or more layers. Substitute layers can be interchanged with the one or more layers to create a different aesthetic or function of the hat. Further, the system can include one or more badges and/or devices that can be connected with accessory attachment points of the base and/or layers to further define a desired aesthetic or enable a desired functionality.
Images(8)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(20)
1. A hat arrangeable over a crown of a head, the hat comprising:
a base including a brim;
wherein when the base is arranged on the head, at least a portion of the crown is partially exposed;
a layer removably attachable to the base;
wherein when the layer is removably attached to the base and the base is arranged on the head, the portion of the crown is disposed beneath the layer.
2. The hat of claim 1, wherein the base includes a visor.
3. The hat of claim 1, wherein the layer is removably attached to the base by one or more of interference snaps, fastening tape, magnets, latches, and toggles.
4. The hat of claim 1, wherein a diameter of the brim is adjustable.
5. The hat of claim 1, wherein a gap exists between the base and the layer such that an airstream can flow between the base and the layer.
6. The hat of claim 1, further comprising:
an accessory attachment point;
wherein the accessory attachment point is adapted to receive one or both of badge and a device.
7. The hat of claim 1, wherein the device is one or more of a digital music device, a communication device, a radio signal receiver, television signal receiver and display, LED lighting, a fan, and a position indicator.
8. A system for providing a hat arrangeable over a crown of a head, the system comprising:
a hat including:
a base having a brim,
wherein when the base is arranged on the head, at least a portion of the crown is partially exposed,
a plurality of layers, each of the layers being removably attachable to one or both of the base and another of the layers such that when the plurality of layers are removably attached the hat is provided;
wherein when the hat is arranged on the head, the portion of the crown is disposed beneath one or more of the layers.
9. The system of claim 8, wherein the base includes a visor.
10. The system of claim 8, wherein the layers are removably attachable to one or both of the base and the another layer by one or more of interference snaps, fastening tape, magnets, latches, and toggles.
11. The system of claim 8, wherein a diameter of the brim is adjustable.
12. The system of claim 8, wherein a gap exists between the base and the layer such that an airstream can flow between the base and the layer.
13. The hat of claim 8, further comprising:
an accessory attachment point;
wherein the accessory attachment point is adapted to receive one or both of badge and a device.
14. The hat of claim 8, wherein the device is one or more of a digital music device, a communication device, a radio signal receiver, television signal receiver and display, a fan, LED lighting and a position indicator.
15. The system of claim 8, further comprising one or more replacement layers; and
wherein the one or more replacement layers are substitutable for one or more of the layers.
16. The system of claim 8, further including a camera removably attachable with one or both of the base and one or more layers, the camera being adapted to retain a recording upon detecting an event.
17. The system of claim 8, wherein:
the camera is a panoramic camera;
the event is detected by an accelerometer.
18. A system for providing a hat arrangeable over a crown of a head, the system comprising:
a hat including:
a base having a brim,
wherein when the base is arranged on the head, at least a portion of the crown is partially exposed,
a plurality of layers, each of the layers being removably attachable to one or both of the base and another of the layers such that when the plurality of layers are removably attached the hat is provided;
wherein when the hat is arranged on the head, the portion of the crown is disposed beneath one or more of the layers; and
one or more replacement layers substitutable for one or more of the layers;
an accessory attachment point adapted to receive one or both of badge and a device.
19. The system of claim 18, wherein the layers and the replacement layers are removably attachable to one or more of the base, another layer and another replacement layer by one or more of interference snaps, fastening tape, magnets, latches, and toggles.
20. The system of claim 18, further including a camera removably attachable with one or both of the base and one or more layers, the camera being adapted to retain a recording upon detecting an event.
Description
PRIORITY CLAIM

This application claims priority to the following U.S. Provisional and Design Patent Applications:

    • U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/609,886, entitled “XAP—New Stylish Hat/Cap Made of Configurable Solid Materials,” filed Sep. 14, 2004, which application is incorporated herein by reference.
    • U.S. Design Patent Application No. ______, entitled “Logo Sports Hat,” (Attorney Docket Number: XAPP-01001US0) filed Sep. 7, 2005, which application is incorporated herein by reference.
    • U.S. Design Patent Application No. ______, entitled “Logo Sports Hat,” (Attorney Docket Number: XAPP-01002US0) filed Sep. 7, 2005, which application is incorporated herein by reference.
TECHNICAL FIELD

This invention relates to hats.

BACKGROUND

Hats come in many shapes and sizes, but are commonly constructed as a single unit. Many hats, for example baseball caps, are made from cloth sections sewn together in a permanent fashion, and therefore have a single look or a single function. Hats made from sturdier material are used specifically in work environments, such as construction, and are generally formed as single utilitarian units.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a side view of an embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a base and one or more layers.

FIG. 1 a is an exploded view of the embodiment of FIG. 1.

FIG. 2 is a side view of an alternative embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a base, a plurality of layers each removably connected with the base, and a plurality of accessory attachment points for fixing one or both of a badge and a device.

FIG. 3 is a side view of still another embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a construction a base and one or more layers assembled in a receding fashion from the back of the hat to the crown.

FIG. 4 is a side view of a still further embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a base, and a plurality of layers arranged to progressively shield a crown of a head.

FIG. 5 is a plan view of a still further embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a base, and a plurality of non-symmetrical layers including an accessory attachment point and a badge removably attached with the accessory attachment point.

FIG. 6 is a side view of still another embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a layer including integrally formed vents allowing air to flow along the inner periphery of the hat.

FIG. 7 is a side view of still another embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a construction allowing air to flow along the inner periphery of the hat.

FIG. 8 is a side view of a still further embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a base, including a brim with headphones, and a camera removably connected with the hat.

FIG. 9 is a side view of a still further embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a base, and a layer removably connected with the base and providing an aesthetically desired structure.

FIG. 10 is a side view of a still further embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention having a base partially enclosing a head and a latch for fixing a diameter of the brim.

FIG. 11 is a side view of a still further embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention including a latch for fixing a diameter of the brim.

FIG. 12 is a side view of a still further embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 is a side view and FIG. 1 a is an exploded view of an embodiment of a hat 100 in accordance with the present invention. The hat 100 comprises a base 102 having a brim 106 that encircles a crown of a head to hold the hat 100 in position on the head. In a preferred embodiment, the brim 106 can be adjustable to accommodate a range of head sizes, but in other embodiments the brim 106 can be “fitted” so that the brim fits an approximate head size, as is common with baseball caps, for example. The base 102 can be a single integrally formed unit, or alternatively can having multiple pieces fixedly associated with one another. For example, a cloth band can be sewn, snapped or otherwise connected with a subunit to form the brim 106 of the base 102.

The base 102 can further include a visor 108 extending from the brim 106 for shielding a wearer's eyes from sunlight, to provide a platform for connecting solar panels for providing power to electronic devices and other objects, to provide a platform for connecting a light source, etc. As shown, the visor 108 is integrally formed with the brim 106; however, in accordance with the modular spirit of the invention, the visor 108 can alternatively be removably connected with the brim 106, or as described below, integrally formed with a layer 104 removably connectable with the base 102.

As can be seen more clearly in the exploded view of FIG. 1 a, the hat 100 further includes a first layer 104 a removably attachable to the base 102 by way of attachment points 110 and a second layer 104 b removably attachable to the first layer 104 a by way of additional attachment points 110-113 such that the layers 104 a-b supplement the surface area coverage of the hat 100 so that the forehead and/or crown of the head is shielded from outside exposure to the sun or elements. The attachment points 110-113 can comprise any number of mating structures or fasteners. For example, the attachment points 110-113 can be interference snaps, fastening tape, magnets, latches, and toggles. In a preferred embodiment, the layers 104 a-b can be commercially available in a variety of colors, rigidity, texture, etc., and having more or fewer features (e.g., attachment points for emblems). In this way, a hat 100 can be customized by the wearer to suit the wearer's taste or mood, or to suit an event (e.g., to match a favorite team's colors). The hat 100 can be purchased with a basic set of layers 104 a-b, or alternatively, a system can be purchased having multiple bases 102 and/or layers 104 allowing the wearer to reconfigure multiple different hats right out of the box. In addition to having commercially available layers 104, “blank” layers can be made available that allow for individual layer customization. For example, a “blank” layer can be particularly suited to painting or other modification. Such a feature can be particularly appealing to children. Layers 104 can further be sufficiently flaccid (or rather, less rigid) to allow the layer 104 to be inverted so that a different exterior is exposed. One of skill in the art will appreciate that upon reflecting on the teachings of the present specification, a number of additionally different modifications will become obvious and are meant to fall within the scope of the present invention.

In addition to having multiple different external properties and structural properties, substitute layers can have different shapes. In such embodiments, additional connecting layers having likewise different shapes may be necessary. For example, in the embodiment shown in FIG. 2, four layers 204 a-d are substantially vertically arranged and sweep toward a back of the hat 200, providing a more “futuristic” and fish scale look. Note that each layer 204 a-d attaches at attachment points along the brim, as well as to attachment points of adjacent layers. Such a configuration departs from the embodiment of FIG. 1, in that a single layer does not connect with all of the attachment points along the brim 202, but rather the brim 202 connects to multiple different layers 204 a-d. In the further embodiment of FIG. 3, a first layer 304 a attaches to the attachment points of the brim 302, with further layers 304 b-d attaching in a fashion that recedes towards the crown from the back of the head. The layers 304 a-d can be substantially horizontally arranged so that the layers 304 a-d build toward the crown. One of skill in the art can appreciate that the same base can be used for multiple different embodiments, or alternatively a base having a different shape and different attachment points can be substituted to create still another embodiment of a hat in accordance with the present invention.

Layers can be arranged, as shown, substantially vertically, substantially horizontally, or the layers can vary such that one or more of the layers are arranged substantially vertically, while the other layers are arranged substantially horizontally. However, it should be noted that the orientation of the layers as “substantially vertical” or “substantially horizontal” is merely used to describe exemplary embodiments. As can be appreciated, layers can be oriented/arranged in myriad different ways, and are limited in arrangement, alignment, and orientation on the ability to provide attachment points on either the base, or one or more other layers. For example, the embodiment shown in FIG. 4 includes layer 404 a-c that can be built toward the crown and toward the back of the hat 400 by way of attachment along the brim 402. In still further embodiments, the layers need not have symmetrical shapes along an axis from the back of the hat to the front of the hat. Referring to the plan view of FIG. 5, the layers 504 a-c can be shaped so that right side of the hat 500 includes an additional accessory attachment point 522 deficient from the left side of the hat 500.

Still further, layers can be attached such that layers appear “in-laid” within other layers. Referring to FIG. 6, in other embodiments the hat 600 need not be limited to including layers 604 a-b that attach to, or build from, bases as shown above in FIGS. 1 through 3. A base 602 can have a plurality of different shapes to form a subunit on which one or more layers 604 can be attached to create a customized hat. As shown, the base 602 includes a brim 606 at least partially disposed within the layers 604 a-b attached to the brim 602. A first layer 604 a having an integrally formed visor 608 attaches to the brim 402 and further includes attachments (not shown) arranged in a spine-like fashion from the back of the hat 600 toward the tip of the visor 608. A second layer 604 b connects with the attachments to form a stripe running from the back of the hat 600 to the front to create a sport look. In such an embodiment, the base 602 is a simpler structure than those bases shown in previous embodiments, and provides attachment points upon which features such as the visor are built. Referring to FIG. 7, an embodiment is shown in which a base 702 comprising a brim 706 is removably connected with a single layer 704 constructed for channeling an airstream 10 along the inner surface of the layer 704 to cool the wearer's head. The same brim 706 can be used for the embodiments of FIGS. 6 and 7 because the layers 604 a-b/704 can define features of the hat 600/700.

FIG. 6 also shows an additional feature integrally formed with the first layer 604 a. The first layer 604 a includes a vent 624 arranged such that when the second layer 604 b is removably connected with the first layer 604 a, the vent 624 is disposed between the layers 604 a-b so that an airstream 10 can enter the hat for cooling of the wearer's head. In other embodiments, still other features can be integrally formed with one or more of the layers. Further, features can be formed from subcomponents contained in different layers such that when the layers are combined, the subcomponents form the feature.

Referring again to FIGS. 1-7, the base and the layers of the hat can include accessory attachment points. For example, referring to FIG. 2, an embodiment of a hat 200 can include an accessory attachment point along the visor 220, along a second layer 221, and across the first layer 222. Accessory attachment points 220-222, provide a location to affix a badge or a device to the hat, thereby enabling further customization of the hat. In an embodiment, a badge can include a team logo, a company logo, a manufacturer's label, an official seal, etc. Alternatively, a device can be removably connectable to an accessory attachment point. A side accessory attachment point 221 can be made suitable to receive a light-weight flash based MP3 player, for example. In such an embodiment, accessory attachment points disposed within the inner surface of one or more layers exposed to a wearer's head can be removably connected with speakers (also referred to herein as headphones) extendable over a wearer's ears and electrically or wirelessly connected with the MP3 player. In such an embodiment, both the MP3 player attachment point and the speaker attachment point can be disposed within a replacement layer that can be purchased separately from the basic system, or optionally can be included in a package, for example targeting a consumer demographic. The location of the accessory attachment points can be modified by replacing one or more layers of a hat with substitute layers to produce a still different hat.

While many of the above embodiments have demonstrated features intended to improve ventilation, accessory attachment points disposed within the inner surface of one or more layers can allow for a winter line that in contrast to such embodiments obstructs airflow to trap heat close to the wearer's head. Further, attachment points used for pivoting headphones can be used to attach earmuffs or earflaps for further increasing warmth of the wearer.

Miniaturization can allow for any number of devices having any number of functions to be connected (removably or otherwise) with the hat. For example, a cellular telephone, a radio and/or television signal receiver, lights (e.g., light emitting diode (LED) flashlights, or colored LED lighting), a display (e.g., a liquid crystal display (LCD)), a personal digital assistant (PDA) or a computer which can utilize an attached display, a fan for cooling a wearer's head, etc. LED lighting can be connected, for example, to overlapping edges of one or more layers so that the one or more layers appear to glow, or appear to be lit from the underside of overlapping layers. Displays may be particularly suited to such a modular, changeable structure. For example, flexible organic light emitting diode (OLED) screens can allow for screens displaying images and/or full motion video to be attached with accessory attachment points of the hat to draw attention to the hat, or to advertise products by way of the hat. Alternatively, a flexible OLED screen can provide a visuals to the wearer. For example, the screen can be attached to an underside of a visor or bill so that when the visor is flipped down, the screen is viewable by the wearer. Such flexible OLED displays have been demonstrated by General Electric, Dow Corning, and Korean manufacturer Ritek. As mentioned above, a visor can provide a platform for arranging solar energy collecting materials. For example, researchers at Virginia Tech University have demonstrated thin, flexible photovoltaic devices (i.e., solar cells) using polymers and fullerenes. Flexible solar cells are currently available for purchase by way of OKSolar.com of Hollywood, Fla. Still further, using nanorods and liquid plastic semiconductor, researchers at University of California, Berkeley, and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have created a solar cell that can be painted or sprayed onto a surface. Such a solution may be ideal for powering devices removably attached to the hat, and can allow selectively energizeable coverage area.

Referring to FIG. 8, in still a further embodiment a camera 830 (such as a panoramic 360 degree camera) can be removably connected with a hat 800, for example a hat assembled for use in bicycle riding. The camera 830 can record the surroundings of a cyclist in constant loop such that the last 10 minutes (or whatever time increment that memory capacity and compression allows for with a desired degree of resolution of the captured images). An accelerometer associated with the camera can control the retention of video and/or images so that if an impact is detected by way of a signal sent by the accelerometer, some pre-defined formula for video and/or image retention can be executed. For example, where the memory capacity is 10 minutes of recording time the last 5 minutes of the cyclist's ride and the 5 minutes following detection of an impact can be recorded. One of ordinary skill in the art can appreciate the variations in formula and amount and timing of recorded video and/or images. The retained video and/or images can serve as evidence for determining negligence in civil suits, or can provide information in hit-and-run accidents, etc.

In addition, or alternatively, a camera removably attached with the hat can be selectively activated to take still images and/or video. For example, many cyclists take bicycle tours as vacation destinations. A hat mounted camera can allow for images and/or video to be captured on-the-fly. Camera sophistication can vary and can be self-contained within the attachable camera module so that the sophistication of the layer need only be such that an attachment point be provided. However, in some embodiments, a layer can include power providing capability (e.g., by way of a battery connected with an attachment point, or a photovoltaic device as described above) and communication providing capability, as desired. Further, an accelerometer can be separately mounted to the hat rather than exist as a subunit of the attachable camera module and can communicate with a camera by way of electrical communication bridge between layers or across a layer, or wirelessly. Different solutions can be provided for different cost tiers, demographics, etc. One of ordinary skill in the art will appreciate the myriad ways in which the devices can be provided on the different layers.

It should also be noted that the embodiment of FIG. 8 includes a brim 806 of a base 802 arranged so that the brim 806 traverses the ears of a wearer. Such an arrangement provides the further advantage that headphones 850 removably attached to accessory attachment points (not shown) of the brim 806 (or alternatively, integrally formed with the brim 806) can be conveniently positioned for listening. Alternatively, the headphones 850 can be removably attached to accessory attachments points of a layer (not shown) such that the headphones 850 can pivot to allow for retraction within the hat 800 when the headphones 850 are not in use, thereby removing a potential distraction. It should also be noted that the brim 806 includes a knob adjustment 840 for adjusting a diameter of the brim 806; however, in other embodiments, such as shown in FIGS. 6 and 7, the diameter of the brim 806 can be adjusted using other mechanisms, such as snaps or buckles. One of ordinary skill in the art can appreciate the different methods for adjusting the diameter of a hat brim.

Note also that the embodiment of FIG. 8 further includes a rear visor 860 upon which photovoltaic cells can be mounted to provide additional power to the hat 800. Alternatively, an additional accessory can be connected with an accessory attachment point of the rear visor 860.

The modular nature of the invention can allow for myriad different aesthetic as well as functional variations. For example, FIG. 9 illustrates an embodiment of a hat 900 in accordance with the present invention in which a base 902 substantially covers the crown of a head, except for gaping vents 903 formed near the forehead up toward the crown of the head. An second visor 907 can be connected with the accessory attachment point 910 and substantially covering the gaping vents 903. The second visor 907 can include an accessory attachment point 920. This design whimsically resembles a medieval helmet, and can be assembled to cheer on a team having such a theme, such as the “Scarlet Knights”.

In a still further embodiment, the hat can be simpler than as shown in the embodiments of FIGS. 1-9. As shown in FIGS. 10 and 11, a base 1002 of the hat 1000,1100 can include a single layer 1004 (or a plurality of layers 1104 a-b) and a latch mechanism 1005,1105 removably attached with the base 1002,1102 and being able to fix an adjusted brim 1006,1106 in place. The embodiment of FIG. 11 further illustrates illumination 12 of a layer 1104 b by way of LED lighting mounted to one or both of the first layer 1104 a and the overlapped second layer 1104 b. As shown in FIG. 12, in still further embodiments, layers 1204 can have myriad different shapes and can attach to a base 1202 and/or other layers in myriad different ways. One of ordinary skill in the art will appreciate, upon reflection of the present teachings, that myriad different modifications can be made within the spirit of the present invention.

Materials

Embodiments of hats in accordance with the present invention can be made from myriad different materials. In a preferred embodiment, the hat can be primarily formed of a rigid, or semi-rigid material selected from one or more of a thermo-formable plastic, carbon fiber, a light-weight metal (e.g., aluminum and titanium), a composite, and a ceramic. However, in other embodiments, the hat can be formed of still other materials. It can be desirable for the brim, the visor, or some other feature to be made of a somewhat weaker material. For example, the brim can include a leather or cloth portion sewn or otherwise permanently joined to a rigid portion of the brim, the leather or cloth portion providing comfort and adjustability near a back of the hat. The material chosen for a structure, whether the structure is a base, a layer, etc., can be chosen based on the function as well as the aesthetic of the structure. For example, where a photovoltaic material is painted on one or more layers, it may be desirable that the one or more layers themselves be formed of a substantially non-conductive material, thereby preventing electrical shorting of the photovoltaic material.

The base and layers of the hat can be individually molded, extruded, or otherwise formed either with or without attachment points and accessory attachment points. Where the base and layers are formed without attachment points, such structures can be fixedly added to a component, for example by way of adhesion or alternatively by punching through the component material and affixing the attachment points, etc. One of ordinary skill in the art will appreciate the myriad different ways in which attachment points can be formed within the base and one or more layers.

The foregoing description of the preferred embodiments of the present invention has been provided for the purposes of illustration and description. It is not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the invention to the precise forms disclosed. Many modifications and variations will be apparent to the practitioner skilled in the art. Embodiments were chosen and described in order to best describe the principles of the invention and its practical application, thereby enabling others skilled in the art to understand the invention, the various embodiments and with various modifications that are suited to the particular use contemplated. It is intended that the scope of the invention be defined by the following claims and their equivalents.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8215787Aug 18, 2009Jul 10, 2012Plextronics, Inc.Organic light emitting diode products
US8288951Aug 18, 2009Oct 16, 2012Plextronics, Inc.Organic light emitting diode lighting systems
US8414304Aug 18, 2009Apr 9, 2013Plextronics, Inc.Organic light emitting diode lighting devices
US8519424Aug 18, 2009Aug 27, 2013Plextronics, Inc.User configurable mosaic light emitting apparatus
US8627515 *Oct 27, 2010Jan 14, 2014Harold Lamont ScottMultifaceted lightweight collapsible hat
US8836221Sep 19, 2012Sep 16, 2014Solvay Usa, Inc.Organic light emitting diode lighting systems
EP2422636A2 *Aug 19, 2011Feb 29, 2012Günter KrauterProtective helmet
Classifications
U.S. Classification2/171.1
International ClassificationA42B1/20
Cooperative ClassificationA42B3/28, A42B1/24, A42B3/30, A42B1/205, A42B3/0433, A42C5/04, A42B3/32
European ClassificationA42B3/28, A42B1/24, A42B3/04B6, A42C5/04, A42B3/30, A42B3/32, A42B1/20D