US 3110945 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Nov. 19, 1963 A. J. HOWE, JR 3,110,945
NON-SLIP TYING ARRANGEMENT Filed Feb. 1, 1962 A RT'HUI? 1 How: J2. i INVENTOEQ.
BY 9 z ZM A GENT United States Patent Ofiice 3,110,945 Patented Nov. 179, 1963 3,110,945 NON-SLIP TYING ARRANGEMIENT Arthur I. Howe, Jr., 1132 26th St., Santa Monica, Calif. Filed Feb. 1, 1962, Ser. No. 170,332 2 Claims. (Cl. 24-143) This invention relates to the shoelace art and more particularly to improved arrangements of shoelaces for resisting inadvertent untying.
Virtually everyone has experienced, at one time or another, the annoying occurrence of having a shoelace become untied. This is particularly common among children whose manual dexterity is not sufficient either to tie the laces securely or at a proper distance from the ends thereof. Consequently, there has long existed a need for an improved shoelace that resists such undesired untying. However, because of the continued and well-established public acceptance of the tubular-type shoelace, particularly that type known as a tubular weave shoelace, it is necessary that any improvements therein not change the external configuration or appearance of the standard shoelace in order to be commercially successful and must not interfere with normal lacing, tying, and untying. Further, such improvements must be exceptionally inexpensive to incorporate into standard shoelaces because of the very modest cost of Shoelaces themselves. In addition, it is also a desirable feature to increase the serviceable life of shoelaces.
Prior inventions relating to means for resisting the inadvertent untying of shoe laces have not, as far as applicant can determine, met these desiderata. Some arrangements have included unconnected metallic or other hard beads inside the tubular weave shoelace that are restrained by friction therebetween in stretching the weave. This not only tended to interfere with tying and lacing and changed the external configuration, but it also decreased the serviceable life due to greater rubbing of the lace at each bead. Further, such unconnected heads often bunched together, resulting in comparatively nonflexible section of the lace.
Other arrangements have incorporated unsightly bulges on exterior portions of the lace that were both expensive to incorporate and difficult to economically manufacture.
This invention overcomes these difliculties by providing, in combination with a standard tipped, tubular weave shoelace, a plurality of spaced, restrained protuberances contained within the lace. In one embodiment of applicants invention, the ends of a flexible body member, such as a thin string or thread, are clampingly engaged to the ends of the tubular weave lace by the tips. A plurality of spaced protuberances are coupled to the body member in a preselected array. In one arrangement thereof, the protuberances may take the form of knots tied in the body member at preselected intervals. Since the knots are also flexible, though less flexible than the unknotted portions of the body member, they are easily fed through eyelets in shoes and tied. By sizing the cross section of the protuberances smaller than the cross section of the unstretched tubular weave lace, the external appearance of the lace is not changed.
When this shoelace embodiment is tied into the typical bow commonly utilized, portions of the lace at the location of the protuberances engage other portions of the lace between protuberances and as the bow is tied the comparatively larger size of the protuberance cannot pass through the restricted tied portion.
Any tendency of the lace to slip, which would result in an undesirable untying, is resisted by the inability of the protuberance to pass through the lace. However, when forces are applied to the tips of the lace to intentionally untie the how, the flexibility of the protuberance allows it to be forced through the restricted portion. Similarly, the protuberances engage edge portions of the shoe eyelets and, when under tension, are prevented from slipping therethrough.
Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide an improved shoelace.
It is another object of this invention to provide a shoelace that resists inadvertent untying and slipping.
It is still another object of this invention to provide an untying resistant shoelace that has the same external appearance as standard tubular shoelaces and is economical to manufacture.
The above and other objects and features are discussed in detail in the following description and with reference to the accompanying drawing in which:
FIGURE 1 is a pictorial representation of a shoelace, partially in section, according to applicant's invention;
FIGURE 2 illustrates another embodiment of applicants invention; and
FIGURE 3 illustrates the shoelace of FIGURE 1 tied in a bowknot.
While applicants invention is described herein in the embodiment of a shoelace, it will be appreciated that it has applicability to any cord, string, twine, rope, or other tying device in which it is desirable to prevent inadvertent untying of a knot.
Similarly, while the description below presents an embodiment of applicants invention utilizing a standard tubular weave shoelace and while this type of existing shoelace has achieved Wide public acceptance, applicants invention may be utilized in any tubular outer covering to provide the inherent advantages described herein.
Referring now to FIGURE 1, there is shown a shoelace generally designated 10 according to applicants invention. A standard tubular weave outer covering 12 has wall portions 14 defining an elongated cavity 16. Contained within the cavity 16 is a flexible body member 18 having a plurality of protuberances 20 coupled thereto at spaced intervals. An end portion 22 of the body member 18 is clampingly engaged to the outer covering 12 by the standard shoelace tip 24. While only a first end 26 of the shoelace 10 is shown in section in FIGURE 1 to illustrate the details of construction of applicants invention, a second end 26 is similarly constructed and the body member 18 with the protuberances 20 coupled thereto is substantially coextensive with the cavity 16 from the first end 26 to the second end 26.
Since the flexible body member 18 is clamped to ends 26 and 26, the protuberances 20 attached thereto can.- not bunch or gather together. The only movement of the protuberances 20 relative to the outer covering 12 is that permitted by the inherent flexibility of the outer covering 12 and portions 18' of body member 18 between the protuberanees 20.
The combination of the body member 18 and the protuberances 20 may be fabricated in a unitary construction. For example, the body member 18 may be a thread,
string, or similar item and the protuberances 2t) may be formed by tying knots at preselected, spaced intervals.
In FIGURE 2 there is shown another embodiment of applicants invention. In this embodiment there is contained within a cavity 16a, formed by the flexible wail portions 14a of a tubular outer covering 12a, a flexible body member 130, which may also be a thread, string, or similar item. Each of the protuberances Zita, however, is formed by coupling portions 18a" of the body member18a in apertures of a plurality of annular yielding sleeve means 30. Each of the sleeve means 3%) is preferably made of a synthetic resin and is somewhat less flexible than the body member 18a. Such coupling may be achieved by gluing each of the sleeve means 30 to the portion 118a" of the body member 18a, by crimping each of the sieeve means 30 on the body member 18a or by any other desired method of attachement therebetween. Each of the sleeve means 30 is preferably formed in the shape illustrated on FIGURE 2, having linear end portions substantially co-axial with the portions 18a of the body member 18a, and an arcuate portion connecting the linear end portions displaced from the center line of the portions 18a of the body member 13a. The arcuate portion of each of the sleeve means 39 provides the protuberance 20a. Applicant has found that the torsional flexibility of the portions 13a of body member 18a between the sleeves 3t} insures that the protuberances Ztia are randomly oriented in angular dispersion about the long axis of body member 18a. This provides a similar effect as the protuberances 2d of FIGURE 1. As noted above, the arcuate center portion of each of the sleeve means 36 that forms the protuberance 29a is displaced from the center line of the portions 18a of the body member 18a intermediate the sleeve means 30. The arcuate center portion is, preferably, deformable to allow the shoe lace to be pulled through eyelets of shoes and through a bow knot tied therein when subjected to preselected forces, but to resist such movement when not subjected to such forces, as described below in connection with FIGURE 3. Thus, under such forces, the arcuate center portion of each sleeve means 30 deforms to approach a coaxial orientation with respect to the linear end portionsthereof and with respect to the portions 13a of the body member 184: when passing through eyelets or a bow knot, and then returns to the shape shown on FIG- URE 2 when not passing through such restrictive apertures.
To achieve the desiderata of providing this improved shoelace yet still retaining the same external appearance as a standard tubular Weave lace, applicant has found that the size of the protuberances 20 must be controlled with respect to the cross sectional dimensions of the cavity 16 of FIGURE 1. Thus, in the preferred embodiment of applicants invention, the cross sectional dimension of the protuberances 20 is less than the unstretched cross sectional dimension of the outer covering 12. However, the flexibility of the outer covering 12 allows it to be compressed against the portions 18' of body member 18 when tied into a typical bow. The particular protuberances 20a immediately adjacent such a bow knot, being of larger size than portions 18', are prevented from passing through such a bow. This is illustrated in FIGURE 3 wherein is illustrated a typical bowknot 32 tied in the lace it) of FIGURE 1.
When the bowknot 32 is securely tied, portions 34 of the outer covering 12 are compressed against the sections 18 of the body member 18 which are between the protuberances 20. The particular protuberances 2% that are immediately adjacent the portions 34 are prevented from slippingly passing through the restricted section. However, when ordinary untying forces, represented by arrows 38, are applied to the ends 26 and 26, as when it is desired to untie the bowknot 32, the flexibility of the protuberances 2% allows them to be compressed sufficiently to pass through the restricted section and thus let the bowknot 32 become untied.
Similarly, the flexibility of the protuberances 2% allows them to be easily passed through the eyelets of shoes (not shown) during lacing and unlacing. It will be appreciated that the sleeve means 30 providing the protuberances 29a as illustrated in FIGURE 2 react substantially the same as the protuberances Zita illustrated on FIG- URE 3 to resist the untying of the bow knot. Also, as noted above, the protuberances 24in illustrated on FIG- URE 2 prevent inadvertent slippage through the eyelets of shoes in a manner similar to that of the protuberances 20 of FIGURES 1 and 3.
While protuberances to resist untying are thus only required in a shoelace, in the end portions thereof where the bowknot is tied, applicant has found that it is not only more economical to have the protuberances coextensive with the length of the lace, but this also provides the advantages mentioned below. This permits the fabrication of the body member 18 with the protuberances 20 coupled thereto as a unitary item which may be continuously inserted into the outer covering 12 before it is cut and tipped. Nevertheless, applicant recognizes that in some applications, it may be more desirable to have the protuberances 2t} only in the bow tying portions of the lace,
even though such an arrangement may be more costly.
In a shoelace application where it is desirable to aiso prevent undesired slipping of the lace through the eyelets of the shoes, having the protuberances extend throughout the length of the lace provides this advantage. When the lace is under tension, as described above, the protuberances engage edge portions of the eyelets and are prevented from slipping therethrough.
From the above description it can be seen that applicants invention also provides a longer serviceable life of a shoelace by both restraining relative movement of the outer covering 12 against itself to thus eliminate frictional wear as well as providing, effectively, a structural reinforcing member in the body member 18.
This completes the description of the embodiments of applicants invention.
What is claimed is:
1. An improved shoe lace comprising in combination: a tubular outer covering having flexible wall portions defining an elongated cavity; a flexible body member positioned within said cavity and substantially co-extensive in length therewith; a plurality of yieldable annular sleeve members coupled to said flexible body member in a preselected spaced array throughout the ienght thereof, and each of such yieldable annular sleeve members comprising a first and a second linear end portion and an arcuate portion intermediate said first and second end portions, and said annular sleeve member having walls defining a body member receiving aperture through said first and second linear end portions and said arcuate portion for receiving said body member therein and each of said annular sleeve members being restrained from linear movement on said body member to maintain said preselected spaced array, and each of said annular sleeve members being substantially uniform in cross-section throughout the length thereof, and said arcuate portions of said annular sleeve members being arranged in a substantially random annular dispersion with respect to the axis of said flexible body member; and rigid tip means coupled to the ends of said outer covering and the ends of said body member for restraining said body member within said cavity.
2. An improved shoe lace comprising in combination: a tubular weave outer covering having walls defining an elongated cavity and said walls having a first degree of flexibility; a string-like body member positioned within said cavity and having a pro-selected torsional flexibility and a second degree of linear flexibility less than said first degree of flexibility of said walls of said outer covering; a plurality of yieldable annular sleeve members coupled to said body member in a pre-selected spaced array through the length thereof and each of said annular sleeve members comprising a first and a second linear end portion and an arcuate portion intermediate said first and said second linear end portion, and said annular sleeve member having walls defining a body member receiving aperture through said first and second linear end portions and said arcuate portion for receiving said body member therein, and said arcuate portion being normally displaced from the center line of the portions of the body member intermediate said plurality of yieldable annular sleeve members and said areuate portion of each of said yieldable annular sleeve members being yieldingly deformable from said displaced position, and said arcuate portions of said annular sleeve members being arranged 6 in a substantially random angular dispersion around the axis of said body member; and rigid tip means coupled to the ends of said outer covering and the ends of said body member for restraining said body member within said cavity.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 85,830 Julian et al Ian. 12, 1869 579,943 Kempshall Mar. 30, 1897 984,099 Manoog Feb. 14, 1911 FOREIGN PATENTS 853,115 Germany Oct. 23, 1952