US 2609539 A
Abstract available in
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
sept 9, 1952 H. E. SHEARER x 2,609,539
EUsT RECEIVING AND SUPPORTING MEMBER Filed June s, 194s HOWARD E .l SHEARER Patented Sept. 9, 1952 BUST RECEAIVING AND SUPPORTING MEMBER Howard E. Shearer, Swarthmore, Pa., assignor to American Viscose Corporation, Wilmington, Del., a corporation of Delaware Application June 3, 1948, Serial No. 30,852 Y n 3 Claims.
This invention relates to novel bust receiving and supporting pockets for brassires and the like.
Conventionally such pocketsaremade by cutting a fabric to pieces of predetermined small size and shape and then sewing the pieces together to form the pockets. The seams in-the pockets so made have long been considered undesirablaand it has been one of the objectives of the art to eliminate them. l p
I have found that seamless bust receiving and supporting pockets having very desirable properties can be made by molding a fibrous web, mat, bat, or the like of discontinuous fibers, at least some of which are potentially adhesive fibers, to generally breast shape.
In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the potentially adhesive fibers are thermoplastic bers which, under heating, rst shrink strongly and then soften to a tacky condition. Prior to shaping of the mat, web or the like, the fibers are in relatively looselyT associated condition. Thel fibrous mat is molded tothe desired generally breast shape by permanent shrinkage of the heatshrinkable fibers. The shrunken fibers are autogenously bonded to each other or to other fibers in the product, to set'the product permanently in the molded condition. A porous, stabilized, bust receiving and supporting member through which the pores of thek body may freely breathe is obtained. The pockets do not comprise slack and are capable of accepting and sustaining the weight of the breast Without sagging.
In one embodiment of the invention, fibers, at least some of which are thermoplastic heatshrinkable fibers, are air-deposited on the surface of a generally breast-shaped mold to provide a layer of uniform thickness comprising a multiplicity of comparatively loosely' associated fibers, and the fibrous layer is heated to first shrink and then-soften the Vfibers to tacky condition. `As the thermoplastic fibers shrink and, at some sections on the mold, undergo deformation, the fibrous product is drawn down to the contours of the mold with tightening of the structure. shrinkage of the heat-shrinkable fibers effects shaping of the mat of discontinuous fibers. After the heat-shrinkable fibers have expended their residual shinkage capacity, and as heating is continued, they soften, and in the softened state, f
bondautogenously to each other and to other discontinuous fibers which may be present. While the shrunk fibers are in the softened condition,
. V1?' against loss of the breast-like shape inuse as a result of autogenous bonding of the discontinuous fibers. The mold on which they fibers are air-deposited may bethe mold on which the final shaping is performed, or it may be of a size largerl than the final size desiredfor the bust-receiving 'and supporting product. In` the latter case, the fibrous layer is transferred from themold on whichthe fibers are initially deposited, to the final mold. Y In another embodiment, the discontinuousv fibersv are air-deposited on a collecting surface to form a fiat, fibrous web or thelike, The' fiat product is then fitted to the contours of thel breast-shaped mold and ,heated tol `shrink the heat-shrinkable fibers andi vsoften-"tli'1=i'rr' l to the`v 'tacky condition to bind-fibers'in fthel'prodct.
the fibrous layers on the mold are preferably f Alternatively, a carded web, mat, b'at, or the like comprising at least some potentially adhesive bers is fitted to the contours of the breastshaped mold Vand heated to stabilize lthe'vv'eb in the shape of the mold.
Not all fibers which are potentially adhesive and capable of being activated to a tacky adhesiveE icondition are` heat-shrinkable'.' 'In some instances, activation of the fibersv in thefibrous product is not preceded or accompanied' by shrinkage of the fibers as such.V For example,
.fibers of cellulose acetate, in the plasticized condition, are` rendered tacky vbyheat but do .not shrink as such prior to theirwconversion tothe tacky state.. If it is desiredto use'such fibers inV` the manufacture of bust-receiving and supporting members comprisingdiscontinuous fibers,ithe
mat, bat or thelike comprising those flbersmay be tted to the contours of the mold and heated under pressure to soften the potentially adhesive fibers to the tacky condition and bond fibers in the product. In 'that case, the fibrous layer is g molded and stabilized in the Ashape of the mold solely as a result of softening of the potentially adhesive bers and binding thereof While they are in the activated adhesive'condition.I Unlike articles of this type which may be obtained by i discontinuous fibers do not comprise slack Yand donot sag in use. l n
Preferably, the Afibrous'mat, web or the like is molded undervvheating while it is in a moist4 condition, lsteam being generated withinlthe fibrous mass during the molding and shaping step. To this end, the product is treated with warm water prior to heating it on the mold. Water may be applied directly to the layer of fibers, as by spraying, or the fibrous product may be Wrapped or sheathed in a fabric, and then treated with Water. For example, the fibers may be deposited from air or other conveying gaseous medium,` onv the surface' of a perforated breastshaped mold, covered with a thin porous fabric, and sprayed with Water which is drawn through the fabric and fibers by suction` iilternatively,`
the fibers deposited on the perforated mold or other collecting surface may be covered wth a wet .alkacrylate resins, polymers of vinyl esters such as vinyl acetate, polymers of vinyl ethers such as e' vinyl acetals, methacrylate polymers and copolyfabric, the moisture carried by the fabric being drawn through the fibers by suction.
When a nat web of fibers is 't0beimo1dee,-the
web may be given a preliminary heating and v pressing treatment sufiicient to .soften or deform` the fibers and cause the fibers'vdto interlock at their points of crossing, the fibers beingV thus set in a crimp-like condition in which they tend to cohere to permit the fiat' web to be fitted ,toA
thecontours of the'fbrea'st-shapedmoid Without disintegration. Such heating and pressing is not suflicient to activategthe potentially-adhesive fibers to a tacky condition, and, in he case-of heat-fshrinkablej fibers, is `not sufficient to cause those fibers to expend gtheir. residual shrinkage capacity.r Full shrinkage of the fibers of the web and/oractivation of the fibers tothe final tacky or adhesive condition is effected only after the web is fitted to the contours of the-.mold on which it is given the final shaping treatment,
As indicated-,lin the preferred embodiment, the product comprising the discontinuous fibers `is heated to shrink and/or soften :the potentially adhesive bers to tacky or adhesive condition, Whilein the moist f condition, steam' being vgenerated atV theinteriorof;the web concomitantly with molding lof the web `to the breast-like shape. When the molding is performed in the 4presence of steam generated within the web, the=breast receiving and supporting pockets have al more `desirable hand or feel, which is important in ythe case of articles of intimate apparel. v,
, The fabric which is associated with the. fibrous web or the like prior to permanent shaping of the web may be peeled or stripped off prior to orafter the heating and shaping operation, or it may be autogenously bonded to the felt-like web during the heating and shaping. operation.V 11n thelatter case, the fabric comprises a permanent integralV element of the'iinal bust receiving and supporting pocket. For instance, the fabric. may constitute a lining for the'pocket. The fabric may comprise'yarns formed frorn'or comprising potentially adhesive libe'rslwhichare the same as or different: from the 'fibers inthe web. In some cases, it maybe desirable.' to provide' bust receiving Yand supporting pockets having a fabric sheath Which completely envelopes or encases the pockets. 'A fabric, fsuch as-a thinporous fabric may be tted over'the mold before the fibers are deposited 'on' it," Eand another fabric, or` af different portion of the Asame fabric," may also be fitted over the fibers 'after they are deposited on the surface ofthe mold.
' A .ny porous fabricmay'beassociatedwith the web, prior to treating the same 'with' Water, but ifjtheffabric to bepermanentlyfan'chored to the web, the fabric is preferably athin porous fabric of the type of gauze. 1
'The webs, mats, bats, or the like which-'are molded. to'A provide the bust receiving andjsu'pporting pockets lof `'the invention may comprise any potentially adhesive fibers which are suitable mers or interpolymers of vinyl halides with other polymerizable substances containing the vinyl radical. In a specifically preferred embodimentl theY fibers are `heat-shrinkable fibers of a copolymer of vinyl chloride with vinyl acetate or vinyl cyanide.
Such fibers are obtained by subdivision of continuous filaments of the copolymer which have been subjected to a stretch of from to 1200% or more during their production or subsequently to their production and While in the cooled unsoftened state or in somewhat softened and plastic condition. Generally, the
l filaments so stretched have a residual shrinkage capacity of at least 50% at temperatures below themelting and decomposition temperatures for the resin. The discontinuous fibers obtained from such stretched continuous filaments have a corresponding residual shrinkage capacity. l
The web or the like may be formed entirely of potentially adhesive fibers, specifically thermoplastic `heat-shrinkable fibers, or it may comprise a mixture of such fibers with other non- .'adhesive bers, that is nbers which are not -potentially adhesive at all, or not potentially adhesive under the conditions employedto activate the `potentially adhesive bers.- The .nonadhesive fibers are of a type suitable for use in garments of intimateapparel and may be natural, articial, or synthetic fibers. For example, rthe nonadhesive fibers may be cotton, Wool, silk, casein, linen, ax, cellulosicfibers such as regenerated cellulose, cellulose esters such as cellulose acetate or the like, or fibers of a natural or synthetic resin, for instance, nylon. When mixtures of the potentially adhesive and non-adhesiveiibers are used/the potentially adhesive fibers are preferably used in an amount of from 25. to 851% by Weight of the total fibers. The fibers are preferably* of textile making length. However; when the bers are air-deposited, fibers of lessthan normal feltable or carding length may be used;
The physical properties, such as the thickness, Weight, and stiffness of the bust receiving'and supporting members can be controlled as desired. Fibrous Webs having a thickness of from 11a" to 1/2" or more may be molded to produce bust receiving and supporting pockets having a thickness of from .001" to 1,435. Very thin nonbulky pockets may beproduced, or the pockets may have a more pronounced bulk or thickness and maybe suitable for padding 'and bodybuild`` step. In the preferred embodiment, the poten.-
tiallyadhesive fibers are activated to a' tacky or adhesive condition while remaining intact and inessentiallyr fiber form.
Formore detailed description, reference should be made to the accompanying drawing in which,
Fig-ure 1 is a front elevation of one embodiment of suitable means for carrying out a preferred form of the invention;
Figure 2 is an elevation of the molding device; Figure 3 is an eleva-tion of `another embodiment of means for carrying out the invention;
Figure 4 is an elevation of a further embodiment of means for carrying out the invention;
Figure 5 is a plan view of a bust receiving and supporting pocket in accordance with the invention; and
Figure 6 is a plan view of a brassire comprising bust receiving and supporting pockets made in accordance with the invention.
When using the apparatus of Figure 1, the fibers, at least some of which are thermoplastic heat-shrinkable fibers, for example, bers obtained by subdivision of strongly stretched continuous filaments of a'copolymer of vinyl chloride and vinyl acetate containing about 90% vinyl chloride in the copolymer molecule, or by subdivision of continuous filaments of a copolymer of vinyl chloride and vinyl cyanide containing about 55% vinyl chloride in the copolymer molecule, are blown into the chamber 2 through pipe 3. Thev fibers settle out on the surface of a removable breast-shaped mold 4 provided with a multiplicity of small uniformly distributed perforations 5 and adapted to be evacuated through pipe 6. The entire mold is adapted to be slowly rotated by means of a pulley 'I and belt (not shown). The application of suction on the interior of the mold serves to draw the fibers dov/n onto the mold surface and prevents their moving or sliding to the edge of the mold. After a layer of predetermined desired thickness -comprising the comparatively loosely associated bers has been collected on the mold, the introduction of fibers to the chamber 2 is terminated. A fabric, preferably a fabric of gauze type, 8 (Figure 2) is placed over the fibers and secured at the base of the mold by means of a locking cord 9 (Figure 2), or the like. Water is then sprayed on the fabric-covered fibers, from the spray heads 9a, and drawn through the fabric and bers by suction. If desired, a fabric of gauze type may be drawn over the mold 4 before the fibers are deposited, and' such fabric may or may not'be bonded to the fibrous web I during the subsequent molding operation.
After the Water treatment, steam may be introduoed into the chamber, to shrink the potentially adhesive bers, thereby shrinking the layer of fibers to the shape of the mold. Al-
ternatively, the mold 4 carrying the' moist layer of bers, having a fabric covering over at least the surface of the layer away from the surface of the mold, may be removed from chamber 2 and subjected to heat to first shrink the thermoplastio heat-shrinkable fibers, and then soften those fibers to tacky adhesive condition. If the potentially adhesive bers are thermoplastic heat-shrinkable bers comprising a copolymer of vinyl chloride and vinyl acetate, or vinyl chloride and vinyl cyanide, as described above, the molding is performed at temperatures of from about 85 C. to 95 C., at which temperatures the copolymeric fibers shrink and contract. Heat may be applied to mold 4 by means of flames, a hot water jacket (not shown) or by means of electrical heating coils Iii imbedded in the mold. The heating is continued until the fibers which rst undergo strong shrinkage are nally activated to the tacky or adhesive condition inwhich they tend to bond together orv with other fibers'. shrinkage of the heat-shrinkable fibers serves to .draw the web down tightly tothe contours of the mold,` the shaping, in.`
this case, being due solelyf to shrinkage of the heat-shrinkable fibers. IThe fabric securedV 'on the mold by the locking cord serves to restrain the web and compact ther fibers. exerted on the web 'by the fabric may lbe sufficient t'o effect vthe .desired compaction of the fibers, or further compaction may be obtained by placing. a female mold member Il over `the fabrii'z-coveredl webr after the heat-shrinkable fibers have been shrunk to conform the web to the shape of the mold, and while the heat-shrinkable vfibers are in the tacky condition. Mold member II. may also .belheated, if desired, for example'by means of an' electrical heatingcoil I2f=imbedded therein. The final shaped pocket is cooled on themold to set' the potentially adhesive fibers in the shrunken and bonded condition. e
When using the apparatus shown in Figure 3, the fibers are blown into chamber I3 through the pipe i3d and collected` onthe endless belt I4. The belt is made. of flexible material such as textile, metal, leather, or thelike, and is preferably positioned in a horizontal plane at the.
bottom of chamber I3. Belt I4 is provided with a multiplicity of small Vuniformly distributed perforations. Air is withdrawn from chamber I3 by the action of exhaustv blower-15.l The fibrous web. carried on the surface of the belt is passed' between the rollers it and I1, which are spaced apart a distance such that the pressure exerted on the web is comparatively light, not more than.30 lbs. l,per square` inch. Roll I6 is electrically heated to av controlled temperature which` is just suicient to warm the fibers and soften. them to the .extent4 that they undergo A deformation. Both the extent of heating of the web and the extentL of compaction thereofA by the` rollers .I6 and Il are controlled. The potentially adhesive fibers are not softened to the tacky condition at this stage of theprocess, the heating and pressing to which the web is subjected being merely sufficient to deform the bers and set them in a crimp-like condition. This improvesthe handling properties of the web I8 and' permits it to be fitted to thecontours of the molde' Without disintegration. If the fibers, or
some 'of them, are thermoplastic, heat-shrinkable nbers and-it isdesired to effect at least -the initial conformation of the web to theccntours of the mold by shrinkage of the bers,`tli'e heat and pressure applied to the web by rollers I e and Il is controlled so that the fibers do notfully expend their residual shrinkage capacity `and remain in relatively loosely associated condition until the web is tted to the mold and heated on the mold. The comparatively loose association of the fibers in the web formed initially is important vto full shrinkage of the vheatshrinkable fibers under heating on the mold.
With reference to Figure 4 there is shown a chamber I9` `into which the fibers are blown through the pipe 2t. The bers settle out on the surface of a perforated endless belt 2|, air being withdrawn from the chamber by the action of the exhaust member 22.` As the layer of fibers is carried from the chamber by the belt, a fabric 23, preferably athin porous fabric of the type of gauze, is unrolled from the roll 24 and after passing around the guide roll 25 is laid down on the surface of the fiber layer. The fabric and The pressurer accessi;`
bers are then sprayed with Water from the spray head 26. The water is drawn downwardly through the fabric and bers by the action of the exhaust blower 21. The product 28 then passes into the nip of the rolls 29 and 30, between which it is subjected to a light pressure. The fabric covered web is then fitted to the contours of a mold similar to mold 4 (Figure 2) and secured to the mold by any suitable means, as for instance by means of a locking cord similar to cord 9 (Figure 2). If desired, a fabric may be drawn over the mold prior to depositing the product 28 thereon, or a fabric may be placed on the endless belt 2| before the bers are deposited on the belt. After the product 28 has been fitted to the contours of the mold, it is subjected to heat until the potentially adhesive fibers are converted to a tacky adhesive condition. The pressure exerted on the fibers by the fabric 23 may be suicient to veffect the desired compaction of the web, or the web may be further compacted by placing a female mold member similar toV member I I (Figure 2) over the male mold member. If the product 28 Vcomprises a felt-like layer comprising thermoplastic bers which are heat-shrinkable, mold member Il is not placed over the male mold member until after the heatshrinkable bers have been shrunk to conform the product to the contours of the mold.
A felt-like bust receiving and supporting pocket made in accordance with the invention is shown in Figure 5.
A' brassire 3| comprising bust-receiving and supporting pockets molded from a brous product'consisting of layers of discontinuous fibers in accordance With the'invention is shown in Figure 6, the members being jointed tothe bodyencircling member 32 and to the straps 33 and 34. The inner and outer surfaces of the pockets may be anchored to a. fabric, such anchoring; resulting from bonding of the fabric to the poten- Ytially adhesive bers while the latter are in the tacky adhesive condition. Any excess fabric may be trimmed from the periphery of the mold member prior to joining it to the body-encircling member. The bust receiving and supporting pockets of the invention may be hand laundered in warm water, and have the outstanding advantage that the bottom thereof is capable of sustaining the load of the breast without sagging in use. 'The pockets support the breast in the esthetically desirable uplifted condition Without exerting strain or pull on the shoulder straps of the brassire or the like with which they are associated.
As previously indicated, the bers in the bat, mat or the like, prior to heating thereof on the three-dimensional, mold are in relatively loose association. This relatively loose association of the bers in the bat is especially important When the potentially adhesive bers are of the type which shrink when heated at temperatures below their melting and decomposition temperatures. By relatively loose association is meant that the potentially adhesive heat-shrinkable bers are free to move and shrink in the bat, and to 8 draw any non-adhesive fibers present with them as they shrink thereby shrinking the fibrous bat as a whole to impart the desired generally breastlike shape to the bat.
Modifications and variations may be made in practicing the invention without departing from the spirit andv scope thereof as defined in the appended claims.
1. A pre-shrunk bust receiving and supporting pocket comprising a fibrous felt-like product consisting of discontinuous bers at least some of which are thermoplastic, heat-shrinkable bers of a copolymer of vinyl chloride and vinyl acetate containing about vinyl chloride in the copolymer molecule and having, initially, a residual shrinkage capacity of at least 50%,- the copolymeric bers in the pocket being shrunk in the pocket to shrink the product as a Whole and impart a generally breast-like shape thereto, and bers in the pocket being autogenously bonded to stabilize the pocket against loss of the breastlike shape in use.
2. A pre-shrunk bust receiving and supporting pocket comprising a brous felt-like product consisting of discontinuous bers at least some of which are bers of a copolymer of vinyl chloride and vinyl cyanide containing 55% vinyl chloride in the copolymer molecule and having, initially, a residual shrinkage capacity of at least 50 %,the ccpolymeric bers in the pocket being shrunk to shrink the product as a Whole and impart a gen'- erally breast-'like shape thereto, and bers in the product being autogenously bonded to stabilize the pocket against loss of the breast-like shape 1n use.
3. A pre-shrunk bust receiving and supporting pocket comprisinga brous felt-like product consisting of discontinuous bers at least some of Whichare thermoplastic, heat-shrinkable bers of a fiber-forming vinyl chloride copolymer, selected from the group consisting of copolymers of vinyl chloride and vinyl acetate and copolymers of vinyl chloride and vinyl cyanide, said copolymeric bers having, initially, a residual shrinkage lCapacity of at least 5D% and being shrunk in the pocket to shrink the product as a whole and impart a generally breast-like shape thereto, bers in the pocket being autogenously bonded to stabilize the pocket against loss of the breast-like shape in use.
HOWARD E. SHEARER.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 2,262,861 Rugeley Nov. 1S, 1941 2,357,392 Francis Sept. 5, 1944 2,374,540 Hall Apr. 24, 1945 2,408,038 Brennan Sept. 24, 1946 2,460,674 4 Bihaly Feb. 1, 1949 2,474,375 Shearer et al. June 28, 1949