US 2725647 A
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Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 6, 1955 R. H. HUGGER 2,725,647
FOOTWEAR Filed July 2l, 1953 A TTORNEY 2,725,647 Patented Dec. 6, 1955 dce FOTWEAR Richard H. Hugger, Ridgewood, N. J., assignor to United States Rubber Company, New York, N. Y., a corporation of New Jersey Application July 21, 1953, Serial No. 369,429
Claims. (Cl. 36--7.3)
This invention relates to footwear, and more particularly it relates to a structure for articles of footwear which are formed of a continuous piece of material.
Heretofore footwear, such as boots and overshoes, which are designed to be worn over the wearers shoe have been built up by a cobbling process in which various parts of the shoe, such as' the sole, vamp, etc., have been assembled by hand on a last. Recently a method has been devised of forming articles of footwear from a plastic material by a slush molding process. This method has many advantages in the production of such footwear, and articles of footwear, particularly those in the nature of boots or overshoes which are designed to be worn over the wearers shoe to protect it from water and snow, are superior when made by this method becuase the footwear may be made of a continuous piece of material which has no openings ytherein other than the leg receiving lopening so that moisture may not enter the overshoe in use. A suitable method of making overshoes of this Vtype is disclosed in the co-pending application of Street et al., Serial No. 315,274, filed October 17, 1952.
This invention contemplates an overshoe of this lgeneral type which is provided with a pleat-like pocket adjacent to the leg-receiving opening therein to facilitate donning and dofllng of the overshoe. More particularly, this invention relates to an overshoe of this type which is constructed with a pleat-like pocket which may be opened to permit insertion of the wearers foot, and which after -it is donned may be closed in a manner such that the footwear then presents a neat and attractive appearance. In one of its more specific aspects this invention contemplates the use of this structure in a footwear having a relatively thick lining which is provided to lend 'heatinsulating qualities to the footwear.
The structure of this invention which achieves these advantages resides in a pocket formed by a fold in the footwear upper which extends from the uppermost rim of the upper downwardly toward the toe. 'This pocket in the open position projects forwardly, and is disposed substantially entirely on one side of the center line of the footwear. That wall of the pocket which is nearest the center line of the footwear joins at its rear edge the body of the upper vin a crease which lies substantially alongY a straight line in that vpart of its length which extends from substantially the nearly horizontal toe covering part of the footwear to the nearly vertical leg embracing part of the footwear. The other wall forming the pocket constitutes an even continuation of the side wall lof the footwear. The two walls, joined along their forward edges, thus form a `thin pocket which projects forwardly of and slightly .to one side of the center of the leg portion of the upper. This pocket `can be opened for .insertion of the foot, and when thelfoot has been inserted it is designedto be .folded over about the above mentioned crease'and bemade to lie flat against the .body of the upper. To prevent bulging near the lowerjend of that pocket W'all which" is to appear oh the v outside Awhen the pocket is thus folded over, i. e., the wall-remote I' from the center line, the footwear is provided with a crease which extends rearwardly from the forward apex of the pocket along the base of that Wall.
In consequence of this construction, a unitary one-piece footwear is formed which has an upper having a contour which conforms substantially to the contour of the wearers foot and lower leg. The pocket interrupts this contour, but because of the disposition of the pocket and its construction, it may be folded over after the foot is inserted in the overshoe, in a manner such that the pocket blends in with the contour of the remainder of the upper to provide a neat and attractive overshoe which snugly embraces the wearers foot.
The footwear in accordance with this invention can be made by a method lsuch as that disclosed in the above identified application. In making the footwear of this invention by that method, a plaster form is rst provided, having the contours described above for the finished footwear. Over this form a metal mold is made, after which the plaster former may be destroyed. This hollow mold is then used to produce the footwear by a slush molding technique. In this technique, the mold is filled with a creamy plastic material. This material preferably is a vinyl plastisol which is prepared by dispersing finelyr divided polyvinyl resin powder in a liquid plasticzer therefor to form .a creamy lquid. The preparation of the p'lastisols and their use are well known by those skilled in the art, and are described in detail in an article ,appearing in Modern Plastics 26, 78 (April 1949) by Perrone and Neuwirth. lf the mold is heated when the creamy lplastic is in it,`a seamless wall of the plastic material will 'be deposited on the internal walls of the hollow mold; after such deposit the remaining liquid maybe poured from the mold. The deposit formed on the internal walls of the mold is then fused by heating it, after which itis stripped from `the interior of the mold yand suitably trimmed, if necessary, to provide the footwear ofthe present Vinvention. l
For a better understanding of the nature of this invention, reference should be had tothe following description lwhen read in conjunction with the accompanying drawing, wherein:
Fig. 1V is a front elevation of a gaiter embodying this invention;
Fig. 2 is a side elevation of the gaiter shown in Fig. l viewed from the right side of F ig. l;
Fig. 3 is Va view similar to Fig. 2 viewed from the 'left vside Vof Fig. 1;
Fig. 4 is a top plan View of the gaiter shown in Fig. l;
Fig. 5 is a side View ofthe gaiter shown in Fig. l in which the pocket is secured against the side of the gater in closed position as it would appear while being worn, Vand Fig. 6 is a cross-sectional view of a small segment ofa preferred material for the wall of the footwear of this invention.
Referring now to the drawing, there is shown therein a plastic gaiter type of .overshoe embodying this invention, designated generally at 1t), wherein the overshoe has been ,formed as a seamless article by the slush molding technique described above. This gaiter 10 has the usual V.sole 11 and upper 12. Although this gaiter is constructed so that the sole has the appearance of a separate part, and hence resembles .the more conventional footwear, it will be appreciated that the entire gaiter is seamless and that this appearance is achieved .by merely forming the mold to the desiredcontours. As shown in the drawings, thegaiterk embodying `this inventionA is contoured so 'that it hasthe foot-embracing portion 13 and the' ankle-"and 'leg-embracing portion 14, ,which are shapedzto '.,t the foo'ankle-and leg ofthe wearer snugly as is desirable in articles of this type. This contour is maintained throughout substantially the entire overshoe excepting for the expandible pocket, next to be described, which permits easy insertion of the foot.
As best shown in Figs. l and 4, this pocket is formed as a fold in the wall of the upper and projects forwardly from the body of the upper. This fold has two walls and 16 which, in the embodiment shown, are disposed entirely on one side of the center line CL of the gaiter and which extend from the top rim of the leg-receiving opening in the gaiter downwardly to that portion of the upper which is to overlie the foot. I have found that if footwear is to be made which permits closure of the pocket to present an attractive appearance, it is necessary that the pocket be formed by walls which project forwardly at the ankle portion of the upper and lie substantially on one side only of the center line of the footwear in its open distended position. The open distended position of the footwear is that illustrated in Figs. 1-4 of the drawings, and is that position which the footwear normally has immediately after its manufacture and is the shape corresponding to that of the mold or last on which it is manufactured.
Since the normal human foot is not symmetrical, footwear is not made absolutely symmetrical, but rather is contoured to fit the foot and leg comfortably. Consequently the center line of the footwear will not be a line that divides the footwear into two symmetrical halves. Rather the center line CL as seen in a top plan view of the footwear such as that shown in Fig. 4 is a straight line running through the rearrnost point F of the upper edge of the 'footwear and through the point G at substantially the forwardmost point of the toe of the footwear and, as seen in Fig. l, lies in a vertical plane containing the points F and G. v
The position of the center line CL3 of the toe portion only of the sole may be determined conveniently by folding a pattern of the sole outline A longitudinally so as to bisect the front of the sole as nearly as can be done. Center line CLa at-its intersection with the sole outline passes through, and determines, the position of point G, which, in turn, determines the position of the toe end of center line CL. Point F is also the point at which the center line CL2 of the leg receiving opening intersects the outer periphery of the wall forming the leg receiving opening at the rear of the footwear. The center line CL2 of the leg receiving opening lies in the vertical plane determined by the center line CL. The projection of the center line CL2 of the leg receiving opening, as shown in Fig. 4, lies along the line CL, and that portion of the center line CL that lies along the center line of the leg receiving opening is designated as CL2 in Fig. 4. The center line CL2 of the leg receiving opening C is determined when the openings outline is considered to conform to the outline, indicated at D, which it would have if the expandible pocket of this invention were not present. l
As shown in Fig. 4, and as is customary in footwear of this type, the edge of the leg receiving opening is not positioned directly over the heel area of the footwear, but this edge is off-set, at a slight angle, toward the outer side of the footwear when worn. The lateral distance by which this edge is off-set in its projection on the sole of the footwear may vary considerably; the exact distance is determined empirically by those skilled in the art to conform to their View as to what distance will afford maximum comfort to a wearer of the completed footwear. For example, in a Womans boot, size 6, of eight inch height, an olf-set of 1%6" has been used. The lateral distance of this off-set is specified as the lateral distance of the point F from a point E where the center line CLi of the heel area of the sole intersects what is normally the rearmost portion of the sole outline A. As indetermining the center line CL3, the center line CL1 may be determined conveniently by folding a pattern of the sole outline A in the heel area so as to bisect this heel area as nearly as can be done. As pointed out above, the center line CL of the footwear as seen in plan view is a straight line running through the thus positioned points F and G. The leg opening is'positioned so that its center line CL2 lies along the center line CL and is coincident with this center line CL at the rear of the footwear. The walls 15, 16 forming the expandible pocket preferably lie on that side of the centerline CL ofthe footwear which is adjacent to the inside of the wearers leg as the footwear is worn.
As best shown in Figs. l, 3 and 4, the wall 15, which is nearest the center line CL of the footwear, lies substantially in a vertical plane which projects forwardly from the body of the upper. Although this construction is preferred, the wall 15 need not lie in a plane. Thus its surface may be slightly concave if desired. Similarly, I have found it advantageous to have this plane extending at a slight outward angle from the center line, as shown, but the position of this plane may be varied if desired. I have also found it to be preferable to position the wall 15 so that it is spaced somewhat from the center line, but this may be moved nearer the center line or positioned on it, so long as the pocket formed by the walls 15 and 16 is positioned substantially entirely on one side of the center line.
The rear edge of this wall 15 intersects the body of the upper in a crease 17 which lies substantially along a straight line throughout that part of its length which extends from the nearly horizontal toe covering portion of the footwear to the nearly vertically extending leg embracing part of the footwear. In the specific embodiment of the invention illustrated in Fig. 3 of the drawing, the crease 17 lies along a straight line extending to near the top of the footwear. Thus from about the point 21, where the crease 17 and the front vertical edge of the wall 15 converge, and where the rate of curvature of the foot profile is changing most rapidly to about the point 24 where the leg of the wearer commences to extend vertically, the crease 17 llies substantially along a straight line. This straight line forms a hinge about which the wall 15 may be folded neatly.
The provision of the pocket to one side of the foot wear, and of the straight line crease, permit the body of the upper to come into snug engagement with the wearer's foot and ankle, yet this construction provides a folding line about which the walls 15 and 16 forming the pocket can be folded without wrinkling the pocket or the upper, therefor the footwear has the neat appearance when closed that is shown in Fig. 5 of the drawing.
The outer wall 16, remote from the center line, forms a smooth continuation of the sidewall of the upper, as best shown in Fig. 4. More specifically the upper 12 continues in a smooth even transition from the rear sidewall 18 of the upper to the outer wall 16 of the pocket with a smooth transition in the area 19. I have found it desirable in a construction of this sort to form an inward crease 20 at the base of this outer wall 16, which crease extends rearwardly from the lower apex 21 of the pocket where thetwo walls 15 and 16 of the pocket join the body of the upper. As best shown in Figs. 1 and 2, this crease extends from the apex 21 rearwardly and slightly upwardly along the contour of the foot a substantial distance, preferably about 1/5 the length of the footwear, along the base of the wall 16. The provision of this crease is beneficial to prevent bulging outwardly of the walls of the upper in this area when the pocket is closed.
The footwear is provided with a suitable fastening. For example, a button 22 may be fixed to the side of the upper opposite the pocket, so this button may receive a loop 23 that is fixed to the upper forward end of the pocket, to hold the pocket in the closed position shown in Fig. 5.
The footwear in accordance with this invention may be made by first building a plaster cast or positive mold model having exactly the configuration shown in the drawing and described heretofore. A hollow metal mold may then be built, using this plaster cast, by the method disclosed in my prior Patent 2,629,907 granted March 3, 1953. The plaster model is `then broken and removed by suitable means from the thus formed hollow metal mold, and the article of footwear is made in this mold by a slush molding technique such as that disclosed in the above identified application of Streed et al.
Referring next to Fig. 6 there is shown a portion of a preferred wall material for the footwear according to this invention in which the material of the wall is provided with a thin, outer, wear-resistant surface of vinyl plastic 24 and an inner, cellular vinyl insulating layer 25. These two layers may be formed in accordance with the method disclosed in the above identified application of Streed et al. to provide footwear having good insulating properties. When an article of footwear is formed having this cornparatively thick wall, it is found that the construction of the instant invention is especially advantageous in providing footwear which has an attractive appearance that is free from unslightly bulges and bends when the footwear is closed by folding the pocket formed by the walls i and i6 against the sides of the footwear.
Having thus described my invention, what l claim and desire to protect by Letters Patent is:
l. ln an article of footwear comprising a sole and an upper having a portion including side walls constructed to provide a leg receiving opening and to enclose a wearers ankle, walls in said upper forming a pocket extending downwardly from the rim of the leg receiving opening of the upper so that the pocket and the sidewalls in the body of the upper form an enlarged opening through which a wearers foot may pass, a wall remote from the center plane of the footwear projecting forwardly of the ankle enclosing portion of said upper and forming a continuation of one side wall of said upper in the open dis tended position of said pocket, a wall lying closely adjacent the center plane of the upper at substantially a uniform distance therefrom throughout the area of the wall and projecting forwardly of the ankle enclosing portion of said upper in the open distended position of said pocket, the rear edge of the latter wall intersecting the remainder of the upper in an upwardly and rearwardly extending crease.
2. An article of footwear comprising a one piece sole and upper, said upper having a portion including side walls constructed to lit the wearers ankle and foot closely, an expandable pocket in said upper, a pocket forming Wall remote from the center plane of the footwear projecting longitudinally of the footwear and forming an even continuation of one side wall of the upper in the open distended position of said pocket, a further pocket forming wall lying closely adjacent the center plane of the upper at substantially a uniform distance therefrom throughout the area of the wall and projecting longitudinally of the footwear, said latter wall intersecting the body of the upper in an upwardly extending crease in the open distended position of said pocket, said latter wall at its other extremity being joined to said former pocket forming wall to form therewith said pocket, said pocket forming walls being foldable across the front of the footwear to lie adjacent the side of the footwear in a closed position.
3. Footwear in accordance with claim 2 wherein said crease lies substantially along a straight line throughout most of its length, and wherein the lower end of the wall of said pocket remote from the centerline intersects the body of the upper in a rearwardly extending crease.
4. An overshoe or the like comprising a vinyl one piece sole and upper, a pocket in said upper disposed entirely on one side of the center line of said overshoe in its open distended position, the wall of said pocket that is farther from the center line forming a continuation of a wall of L'fa.
the body of the upper, the wall of the pocket adjacent the center lineV lying substantially in a forwardly extending plane and intersecting at its rear edge the remainder of the upper in a sharp crease which lies substantially along a straight line substantially throughout its entire length rand about which the pocket is designed to fold, and means Vof said overshoe, one of said walls being disposed close to the center line of the overshoe, said pocket extending forwardly of the ankle embracing portion of the footwear, said pocket being formed by a wall remote from the center line and extending forwardly of the ankle embracing portion of the overshoe, said remote wall at its rearward end forming a continuation in a smooth transition of one wall of the body of the upper, said pocket being completed by the wall close to the center line of the overshoe, said latter wall lying substantially in a forwardly extending plane, said latter wall intersecting the body of the upper in an upwardly extending crease which lies substantially along a straight line throughout substantially its entire length and about which said pocket walls are adapted to be folded, and means for securing said pocket walls adjacent the side of the upper when they are so folded.
6. An overshoe in accordance with claim 5 in which the pocket is disposed on that side of the center line of the shoe which is adapted to be Worn on the inside of the wearers foot.
7. An article of footwear comprising a sole and an upper having an ankle embracing portion, two walls in said upper extending downwardly and forwardly from said ankle embracing portion of the footwear, said footwear having an expanded resinous insulating lining, said walls projecting forwardly of the footwear and being joined at their forward edges in a sharp molded crease that extends upwardly from the vamp to the rim of the upper, one of said Walls joining its side of said ankle embracing portion of the upper in a sharp molded reentrant crease lying near the center plane of the footwear throughout the length of said crease and about which said latter wall is adapted to be folded, said latter crease extending from the lower end of said first crease upwardly and rearwardly to the rim of the upper. t
8. An article of footwear comprising a sole and an upper having an ankle embracing portion, said ankle embracing portion including a rear wall and side walls, a rst of said side walls extending around to the front of said ankle embracing portion and terminating at a reentrant corner disposed near the center line of the footwear, a first pocket forming wall extending forwardly from said corner, a second pocket forming wall extending forwardly of the ankle embracing portion in a smooth continuation of the second of said side walls, said pocket forming walls joining together at their forward edges in a molded crease, the pocket formed by said pocket forming walls being adapted to be folded over about said corner and against one of said side walls.
9. A11 article of footwear comprising a sole and an upper having an ankle embracing portion, said ankle embracing portion including a rear wall and sidewalls partially forming a leg receiving opening in the upper, a partial front wall extending from one of said sidewalls in a sharp curve following generally a natural ankle curvature across a portion of the front of the ankle, a first pocket forming Wall extending forwardly of the ankle embracing portion in a smooth continuation of a second of said sidewalls, a further pocket forming wall lying closely adjacent the center line of the footwear and extending rearwardly from the front edge of the first pocket forming wall, said further pocket forming wall at its forward edge joining said first pocket forming wall in a molded crease, said latter wall at its rear edge joining said partial frontY wall and forming therewith a reentrant corner at the juncture of said Walls.
10. An article of footwear comprising a sole and an upper having an ankle embracing portion, two walls in said upper extending downwardly and forwardly from said ankle embracing portion of the footwear, said walls being joined at their forward edges in a sharp molded crease that extends upwardly from the vamp portion of the upper to the rim of the upper, one of said walls joining its side of said ankle embracing portion of the upper in a sharp molded reentrant crease lying near the center line of the footwear and about which said latter wall is 8 adapted to be folded, said latter crease extending from the lower end of said rst crease upwardly and rearwardly to the rim of the leg receiving opening in the footwear.
References Cited in the tile of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,068,942 Siegel July 29, 1913 1,817,300 Dorogi Aug. 4, 1931 1,865,709 Slocum July 5, 1932 2,287,026 Craig et al June 23, 1942 2,425,208 Shaffer Aug. 5, 1947 2,479,006 Garth Aug. 16, 1949 2,652,637 Hardman Sept. 22, 1953