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Publication numberUS2754519 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 17, 1956
Filing dateMar 25, 1952
Priority dateMar 25, 1952
Publication numberUS 2754519 A, US 2754519A, US-A-2754519, US2754519 A, US2754519A
InventorsKindel Elmore A
Original AssigneeProtectears Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Ear piece fitting and valve
US 2754519 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

July 17, 1956 E. A. KINDEL 2,754,519

EAR PIECE FITTING AND VALVE Filed March 25, 1952 INVEN TOR. fluorel4 Aizvaez, BY

@0\. Y ATTORNEYS.

EAR PIECE FITTING AND VALVE Elmore A. Kindel, Cincinnati, Ohio, assignor to Protectears, Inc, Wyoming, Ohio, a corporation of Ohio Application March 25, 1952, Serial No. 278,460

9 Claims. (Cl. 2-209) This invention relates to an ear piece fitting and valve, and while it is capable of use in many situations, it is particularly useful in connection with car pieces as disclosed and claimed in my copending application, Serial No. 154,- 135, filed April 5, 1950, now Patent No. 2,593,892.

In my said copending application I have disclosed an ear piece which in its preferred embodiment comprises an annular hollow member of smoothly rounded surface which is adapted to seat against the human skull around the outer ear. The tubular member is deformed independent of external forces from a mean general plane and has protuberances in the region adapted to contact the skull in front of the helix of the ear and in the region adapted to contact the skull below the lobe of the ear, and depressions intermediate said protuberances. The annular member is closed on the side away from the skull in use by a rigid plate which is also deformed similarly to the annular member to assist the latter in retaining its shape. This ear piece is arranged to fit over the outer ear and seat against the skull with uniform pressure around its entire periphery. Means are provided in the form of a steel spring wire head member to hold a pair of such ear pieces on the head of the user.

The ear pieces of my said copending application were designed primarily to prevent access of Water to the inner ear. I have found that these ear pieces are absolutely water-tight, and in actual practice it is difficult to remove them after they have been worn for any length of time. After the ear pieces have been worn for even a short time a vacuum is set up Within the ear pieces which causes discomfort when an attempt is made to remove the ear pieces.

It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a fitting for holding the ear piece against the skull which incorporates a valve so that when it is desired to remove the ear pieces the valve may be turned to equalize pressures inside and outside the ear piece so that the ear piece may be removed without discomfort.

It is another object of the invention to provide a valve which is so tight that when it is in closed position access of water to the inside of the ear piece is prevented.

It is a further object of the invention to provide a fitting as above outlined which Will be simple in construction and foolproof in operation.

These and other objects of the invention which I shall point out in greater detail hereinafter, or which will be apparent to one skilled in the art upon reading these specifications, I accomplish by that certain construction and arrangement of parts, of which I shall now disclose certain exemplary embodiments.

Reference is made to the drawings forming a part hereof, and in which:

Figure 1 is a front elevational view of a head set including two ear pieces according to my said copending application and a spring steel head band;

Figure 2 is an elevational view of one ofthe ear pieces on an enlarged scale as 'seen'on"the 1ine 2"-2 of Fig. 1;

nited States Patent "ice Patented July 17, 1956 Figure 3 is a cross sectional view of the same taken on the line 33 of Figure 2;

Figure 4 is an elevational view of the same as seen from the opposite side of Figure 2;

Figure 5 is a fragmentary detail cross sectional view on an enlarged scale taken on the line 55 of Figure 3;

Figure 6 is a view similar to Figure 5 showing the parts in a diiferent position;

Figure 7 is a cross sectional view of the same taken on the line 77 of Figure 6;

Figure 8 is a perspective view of the outer sleeve member; and

Figure 9 is a view similar to Figure 7 showing a slight modification.

Briefly, in the practice of my invention I provide in the domed rigid member of my copending application an aperture, and I close this aperture by means of a grommetlike device having an axial bore partway through, and a radial bore communicating with the axial bore. A diametral bore also intersects the axial bore. The diametral bore serves for engagement of the wire which constitutes the head band. Surrounding the grommetlike member I provide two concentric sleeves, the inner of which has a pair of diametrically opposed holes which are aligned with the diametral bore and through which the head band wire passes, and which sleeve also has a hole communicating with the radial bore; the outer sleeve is provided with a hole capable of communicating with the radial bore, and with a pair of diametrically opposed slots through which the head band wire passes. The head band wire thereby limits the rotational movement of the outer sleeve with respect to the inner sleeve and serves to hold all the parts in assembly. The hole in the outer sleeve is so disposed that at one limit of rotational movement of the outer sleeve the hole in the outer sleeve is aligned with the hole in the inner sleeve and the radial bore, and so that at the other limit of rotation of the outer sleeve the communication with the radial bore is interrupted.

The ear pieces are generally indicated at 10, it being understood that these are mirror images of each other. Generally speaking, they are held together against the skull by means of a head band element 11, which may be a piece of spring steel wire or the like. The ear pieces 10 include the rubber or like annular member 19a, and the rigid dome-like member 10b.

According to my present invention the member 10b is provided with a hole 100, and a grommet-like member of rubber or other suitable material indicated at 12 is engaged in the hole 10c by means of an annular groove 12a. The engagement between the member 12 and the member 10b must, of course, be water tight.

The member 12 has a partial axial bore 13 which communicates with the inside of the ear piece. A diametral bore 14 intersects the axial bore 13 and is smaller in diameter. The diametral bore 14 is of such a diameter that the ends of the member 11 pass through it in watertight relationship so that while water cannot leak through the wire 11 and the bore 14, yet the ear piece as a whole may be moved longitudinally of the wire for adjustment, if desired.

A radial bore 15 communicates with the axial bore 13.

Surrounding the member 12 are the concentric sleeves 16 and 17. The inner sleeve 16 is provided with the holes 16a and 16b. It will be observed that the holes 1612 are diametrically opposed and serve for the passage of the member 11, and the hole 16a is positioned in alignment with the radial bore 15.

The outer sleeve 17 is provided with the diametrically opposed slots 17a and the air hole 17b. The slots 17a serve for the passage of the member 11 and permit of a limited degree of rotation of the sleeve 17 with respect to the sleeve 16. It will be observed that the hole 17b is so positioned in relation to the slots 17a that at one limit of rotation of the sleeve 17 the hole 17b is in alignment with the hole 16a, and therefore, with the radial bore and the axial bore 13, as best seen in Figure 6. At the other limit of rotation of the sleeve 17 it Will be observed that the hole 17b-is no longer aligned with the hole 16a and the radial bore 15 and axial bore 13. This position is shown in Figure 5.

From the foregoing it will be clear that the member 11 passes through apertures in the sleeve 16 and 17 and the member 12 so as to hold the two sleeves in assembled relation with the member 12. The member 11 also serves as a limiting stop for rotation of the outer sleeve 17 from a position where communication is established between the inside and outside of the ear piece, and a position where communication between the outside and inside of the ear piece is interrupted.

In actual practice I have made the inside diameter of the outer sleeve .0005 larger than the outside diameter of the inner sleeve. I have found that with these dimensions the device is entirely waterproof when the valve is in the closed position. When the valve is turned to the open position the ear piece may easily be removed from the ear without discomfort, and conversely, the open valve allows trapped air to escape when the ear pieces are put on, so that excess pressure on the ear drums is relieved. The valves are then of course turned to closed position before entering the water.

In Figure 9 I have shown a minor modification where the inner sleeve 26 is externally threaded, and the outer sleeve 27 is internally threaded. The device operates in exactly the same way as the device thus far described, the only difference being a threaded engagement between the two sleeves instead of a slip ring engagement between them. I have found that the embodiment of Figure 7 is just as watertight as that of Figure 9, but in some instances the embodiment of Figure 9 may be more desirable.

I have shown the member 12 as made of rubber, but it to be understood that this may be natural or synthetic rubber or any other suitable material. The sleeve 16 and 17 or 26 and 27 may be made of stainless steel, on if desired, they may be of anodized aluminum which is considerably less expensive and substantially as resistant to corrosion.

It will also be understood that the ear piece as a whole may be adjusted along the member 11 and yet the engagement of the member 11 in the diametral bore 14 is tight enough so that no Water can leak through.

It Will be clear that numerous modifications may be made without departing from the spirit of my invention, and I therefore do not intend to be limited except as set forth in the claims which follow.

Having now fully described my invention what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent, is:

1. An ear piece fitting for use with an ear piece having an impervious wall having a hole therein comprising an element of resilient material securable in watertight relation to the circular edge of said hole, said element having an incomplete axial bore communicating with said hole, a diametral bore in said element intersecting said axial bore and of smaller diameter, a radial bore in said element communicating with said axial bore, an inner metallic sleeve snugly embracing said element and having a pair of diametrically opposed holes communicating with said diametral bore and a third hole communicating with said radial bore, an outer metallic sleeve snugly embracing said inner sleeve and'having diametrically opposed peripheral slots and an air hole, and a retaining member passing through the slots in said outer sleeve, the diametrically opposed holes in said inner sleeve, and watertight through said diametral bore to hold said member and sleeves in assembled relationship, the slots in said outer sleeve permitting a rotation thereof with respect to said inner sleeve within the limits of the length of said slots, the air hole being positioned in relation to said slots so that at one limit of rotation of said outer sleeve said air hole communicates with said third hole, radial bore and axial bore, and at the other limit of rotation of said outer sleeve said communication is interrupted.

2. In combination with an impervious ear piece, a valve for selectively permitting passage of air through said ear piece, comprising a plug extending through said ear piece in watertight relation and having a partial axial bore communicating with the inside of said ear piece, and a radial bore communicating with said axial bore to the outside of said ear piece, a sleeve embracing said plug in watertight relation, a hole in said sleeve adapted to be aligned with said radial bore, diametrically opposed slots in said sleeve and a diametral hole in said plug, and pin means passing through said diametral hole and engaging in said slots for holding said sleeve in assembly with said plug, said pin means serving also as a step for limiting rotational movement of said plug to the extent of said slots, the hole in said sleeve being located with respect to said slots so that said hole is aligned with said radial bore at one limit of said rotational move ment.

3. In combination: a valve comprising a plug of resilient material having a partial axial bore and a radial bore communicating with said axial bore, a first metallic sleeve embracing said plug in watertight relation and having a hole in alignment with said radial bore, a radial pin passing through other holes in said plug and sleeve to hold them in assembly, a second metallic sleeve ernbracing said first sleeve in watertight relation, a hole and a slot in said second sleeve, said pin passing through said slot and limiting rotational movement of said second sleeve with respect to said first sleeve to the extent of said slot, said hole in said second sleeve being disposed with respect to said slot so that said hole is aligned with the hole in said first sleeve at one limit of said rotational movement; and an impervious ear piece having a hole, said plug being mounted in said last named hole in watertight relation, and means to hold said ear piece against the skull.

4. In combination: a valve comprising a plug of resilient material having a partial axial bore and a radial bore communicating with said axial bore, a first metallic sleeve embracing said plug in watertight relation and having a hole in alignment with said radial bore, a second metallic sleeve embracing said first sleeve in watertight relation, a hole in said second sleeve adapted to be aligned with said radial bore, diametrically opposed slots in said sleeve and a diametral hole in said plug, and pin means passing through said diametral hole and engaging in said slots for holding said sleeve in assembly with said plug, said pin means serving also as a stop for limiting rotational movement of said second sleeve with respect to said first sleeve to the extent of said slots, the hole in said second sleeve being disposed with respect to said slots so that said hole is aligned with the hole in said first sleeve at one limit of said rotational movement; and an impervious ear piece having a hole, said plug being mounted in said last named hole in Watertight relation, and means to hold said ear piece against the skull.

5. In combination: avalve comprising a plug of resilient material having a partial axial bore and a radial bore communicating with said axial bore, a first metallic sleeve embracing said plug in watertight relation and having a hole in alignment with said radial bore, a radial pin passing through other holes in said plug and sleeve to hold them in assembly, a second metallic sleeve embracing said first sleeve in watertight relation, a hole and a slot in said second sleeve, said pin passing through said slot and limiting rotational movement of said second sleeve with respect to said first sleeve tothe extent of said slot, said hole in said second sleeve being disposed with respect to said slot so that said hole is aligned with the hole in said first sleeve at one limit of said rotational movement; and an impervious ear piece having a hole, and a headband, said plug being mounted in said last named hole in watertight relation, said pin being an end of said headband.

6. In combination: two valves, each comprising a plug of resilient material having a partial axial bore and a radial bore communicating with said axial bore, a first metallic sleeve embracing said plug in watertight relation and having a hole in alignment with said radial bore, a radial pin passing through other holes in said plug and sleeve to hold them in assembly, a second metallic sleeve embracing said first sleeve in watertight relation, a hole and a slot in said second sleeve, said pin passing through said slot and limiting rotational movement of said second sleeve with respect to said first sleeve to the extent of said slot, said hole in said second sleeve being disposed with respect to said slot so that said hole is aligned with the hole in said first sleeve at one limit of said rotational movement; and two impervious ear pieces, each having a hole, said plugs being mounted, respectively, in said last named holes in watertight relation, and a connecting headband, the pins of said two valves being respectively the two ends of said headband.

7. In combination: a valve comprising a plug of resilient material having a partial axial-bore and a radial bore communicating with said axial bore, and means for closing said radial bore; and an impervious ear piece having a hole, said plug being mounted in said hole in watertight relation, with said axial bore opening within said ear piece, and said radial bore and the closing means therefor being disposed outside said ear piece, and means to hold said ear piece against the skull.

8. In combination: a valve comprising a plug of resilient material having a partial axial bore and a radial bore communicating with said axial bore, means for closing said radial bore, radial holes in said plug and closing means, and a radial pin passing through said radial holes to hold said closing means and plug in assembly; and an impervious ear piece having a hole, and a headband, said plug being mounted in said last named hole in watertight relation, with said axial bore opening within said ear piece, and said radial bore an the closing means therefor and said pin being disposed outside said ear piece, said pin being an end of said headband.

9. In combination: two valves each comprising a plug of resilient material having a partial axial bore and a radial bore communicating with said axial bore, means for closing said radial bore, radial holes in said plug and closing means, and a radial pin passing through said radial holes to hold said closing means and plug in assembly; and two impervious ear pieces each having a hole, and a headband, said plugs being mounted in said last named holes in watertight relation, with said axial bores opening within said ear pieces, and said radial bores and the closing means therefor and said pins being disposed outside said ear pieces, said pins being the ends of said headband.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 631,435 Pickles Aug. 22, 1899 715,623 Stretch Dec. 9, 1902 1,439,744 Mellor Dec. 26, 1922 1,520,367 Pengilly Dec. 23, 1924 2,201,275 Slusher May 21, 1940 2,327,620 Cole Aug. 24, 1943 2,468,721 Volkmann Apr. 26, 1949 2,564,147 Bowling Aug. 14, 1951

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US631435 *Jul 12, 1898Aug 22, 1899Walter L FlowerPneumatic hammer.
US715623 *Feb 26, 1902Dec 9, 1902James E CrossleyFaucet.
US1439744 *Mar 19, 1920Dec 26, 1922 Air valve
US1520367 *Jan 12, 1924Dec 23, 1924Lewis PengillySuction valve for cigarette lighters
US2201275 *Apr 27, 1938May 21, 1940Goodrich Co B FCover assembly for storage batteries
US2327620 *Apr 13, 1942Aug 24, 1943Cole Charles EEar protector
US2468721 *Jul 9, 1945Apr 26, 1949John VolkmannEarphone socket and noise shield
US2564147 *Mar 9, 1946Aug 14, 1951Bowling Leonard CValve
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3395702 *Apr 12, 1966Aug 6, 1968Wayne White WilliamSki cap having safety features
US3440663 *Aug 25, 1966Apr 29, 1969American Optical CorpAttachment mounting means for hearing protectors
US3454964 *May 3, 1967Jul 15, 1969Mine Safety Appliances CoAdjustable ear protector
Classifications
U.S. Classification2/209, 128/866, 128/868
International ClassificationA61F11/14, A61F11/00
Cooperative ClassificationA61F11/14
European ClassificationA61F11/14