US 2814043 A
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Nov. 26, 1957 A. L. ALESI NAPE STRAP Filed Nov. 16, 1954 A TTUR/VLY BY (yaw United States Patent NAPE STRAP Anthony L. Alesi, Natick, Mass., assignor to the United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Army Application November 16, 1954, Serial No. 469,321
3 Claims. (Cl. 2-3) (Granted under Title 35, U. S. Code (1952), sec. 266) The invention described herein, if patented, may be manufactured and used by or for the Government for governmental purposes, without the payment to me of any royalty thereon.
The invention relates to means for connecting a head covering to the head so as to prevent forward tilting of the head covering on the head. Such devices usually comprise an elongated flexible member having opposite ends connected to opposite sides of the head covering and a central portion which engages the nape of the neck at the point where the same merges with the base of the head. Such devices may be adjustable as to length but uniformly lack any means for raising or lowering the nape engaging portion relative to the head covering to position the same properly. Likewise, prototype nape straps make no provision for shaping the nape portions to fit properly the base of the head-nape area. This last can be accomplished by making the nape engaging portion of elastic as in the copending application of Grancsay et al. Serial No. 458,297, filed September 24, 1954. However, while such structure has certain advantages as enumerated in the application, it is more expensive and is not usable where an inelastic connection is desired.
With the foregoing in view, it is an object of my invention to provide an improved nape engaging means for a head covering.
A further object is to provide an improved nape engaging means which includes means for adjusting the same vertically relative to the head covering.
A further object is to provide an improved nape engaging means which includes a nape engaging portion shaped to be form fitting.
Other objects and advantages reside in the particular structure, shape or design of the device; the structure of the several elements thereof; combinations and subcombinations of the same with each other and with a head covering, all of which will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art upon reference to the attached drawing in connection with the following specification wherein the invention is shown, described and claimed.
In the drawing:
Fig. l is a side elevational view of a helmet suspension embodying the invention the helmet being shown in longitudinal vertical section;
Fig. 2 is a rear view of the invention, the helmet being shown in transverse vertical section;
Fig. 3 is a rear view of a preferred form of nape engaging portion of the invention; and
Fig. 4 is a like view of a modified nape engaging portion.
Referring specifically to the drawing wherein like characters designate like parts in all views, designates generally any suitable head covering such as a helmet shell which includes a chin strap 8 and any suitable helmet suspension generally indicated at 11 and which corresponds to that illustrated, described and claimed in the copeuding application of Grancsay et al., Serial No. 458,298, filed ice September 24, 1954, now Patent No. 2,758,306, dated August 14, 1956. Obviously, the invention is applicable to other forms of head coverings having other types of suspensions. In the simplest form of the invention, my nape strap comprises an elongated flexible member having opposite ends secured to the helmet shell 10 and wherein at least one of such opposite ends is adjustably secured whereby the length of the strap can be varied. Also, a vertically directed strap or the like is secured to the flexible member centrally thereof and has its upper end adjustably secured to the helmet in any suitable manner. In the particular embodiment illustrated in Figs. 1 to 3, the nape strap comprises a nape engaging member 12 which is formed of any suitable flexible fabric or like material such as duck which is preferably inelastic. Preferably, the member 12 is formed with upwardly diverging side edges 9 which connect a relatively long upper edge 20 to a relatively shorter lower edge 21. In the embodiment illustrated, the edges 9, 20 and 21 are straight and are so constructed and arranged that they define an inverted isosceles trapezoid. However, the essential features are the provision of a long top edge and upwardly diverging side edges. The edges are not necessarily straight. The nape engaging member 12 has integral therewith or fixedly secured thereto as by stitching, a pair of flexible members such as straps 13 which preferably extend upwardly in diverging directions on lines comprising substantial extensions of the side edges 9 of the member 12. The upper ends of the straps 13 are adjustably secured to the helmet by means of buckles 14 carried by buckle straps 15 which are pivotally secured to the helmet shell 10 in any suitablemanner as by the rivets 16. It is preferable that both straps 13 be adjustable as to length in order that the nape-engaging member 12 can be maintained centrally of the wearers neck. It is obvious from the foregoing that the buckles 14 and straps 13 comprise means for adjusting the length of the nape strap. However, such adjustment makes no provision for adjusting the member 12 vertically toward and away from the helmet shell 10. To accomplish this last purpose, there has been provided a third flexible strap or the like 17 which is secured to the member 12 centrally thereof and which extends upwardly therefrom. The upper end of the strap 17 is adjustably secured to the helmet 10 by a buckle 18 which is fixed to the helmet 10 in any suitable manner as by the rivet 19.
It is apparent from the foregoing, that the strap 17 when adjustably secured to the helmet 10 by the buckle 18 not only prevents sagging of the nape engaging portion 12 but also provides means which cooperate with the straps 13 to retard forward tilting of the head covering 10 on the head of the wearer. Chin strap 8, of course, prevents rearward tilting of the shell 10. Obviously, the vertical adjusting means 17 and 18 enable the nape engaging member 12 to be located at the most desirable position on the wearers neck, irrespective of the particular head and neck shapes involved. Likewise, it should be noted that by forming the nape engaging member 12 with a relatively long top edge 20 from which the straps 13 extend and a relatively short bottom edge 21, the same readily adapts itself to the shape of the wearers head and neck in the nape region. Thus, at the area where the neck is enlarged in upwardly diverging lines and merges with the head, there is provided an area of substantially the same shape as the member 12. Clearly then a member 12, shaped as described above, will have a form fit with such area of the neck and head.
While the nape engaging member 12 just described is considered to be the preferred shape of this portion of the nape strap it is obviously not my intention to limit myself to that particular shape. In the form of invention of Fig. 4, there has been provided a nape strap which comprises the relatively narrow strap ends 30 and 31 and the relatively wide nape engaging portion 32 to which is secured the height adjusting flexible member 33 which corresponds to the strap 17 of the first described form of the invention. It has been found that the nape engaging portion 32 may be of rectangular shape but preferably has the corners thereof eliminated by being bent over and secured by lines of stitching 34 which secures the strap ends 30 and 31 to the portion 32.
Although I have shown and described what is now thought to be preferred embodiments of the invention, it should be understood that the same is susceptible to other forms and expressions. Consequently, I do not limit myself to the precise structures shown and described hereinabove except as hereinafter claimed.
1. The combination with a helmet shell including a helmet suspension and a head band for spacing said shell from the head of a wearer; of a nape engaging member below said head band, a pair of flexible elements secured to said member in laterally spaced relation, said elements extending forwardly of said member in upwardly diverging directions, a third flexible element extending upwardly and rearwardly of said member intermediate said pair of elements, and means securing all of said elements to said shell to provide a three point suspension for said member.
2. The combination of claim 1, wherein said nape engaging member is in the form of an inverted isosceles trapezoid, and wherein said pair of flexible elements are disposed in the planes defining the sides of the trapezoid.
3. The combination of claim 2, there being means below said head band for adjusting the length of at least said third flexible element.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,231,766 Mahan July 3, 1917 1,419,924 Hammond et a1 June 20, 1922 2,151,458 Allen Mar. 21, 1939 FOREIGN PATENTS 544,383 Great Britain Apr. 10, 1942