US 3314077 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Am W, 9 J. L, MARCHELLO SAFETY HELMET RETAINER Filed April 9, 1965 FIG! FIG-4 INVENTOR JOHN L. MARCHELLO BY edi jbmam ATTORNEYS.
United States Patent 3,314,077 SAFETY HELMET RETAINER John L. Marchello, Ann Arbor, Mich., assignor, by mesne assignments, to American Safety Equipment Corporation of Michigan, New York, N.Y., a corporation of Delaware Filed Apr. 9, 1965, Ser. No. 446,829
3 Claims. (Cl. 2-3) This invention relates to a Safety Helmet Retainer, and more particularly, to a retainer flap for securing a safety helmet to the head of the wearer.
Safety helmets are conventionally secured to the head of the wearer by means of either a simple chinstrap or else 'by meansjof a more elaborate harness to hold the helmet upon the head and prevent it from slipping off in the event of an impact. Where simple chinstraps are used, the helmet has a tendency to slip off or to move relative to the head upon impact thus not completely protecting the head in the manner designed.
Thus, it is an object of this invention to provide a retainer in the form of a foldable flap to be secured to the rear portion of a safety helmet which, in conjunction with the simple chinstrap, will lock the helmet frictionally to the head, but which may be pivoted into the interior of the helmet when desired for appearance purposes.
Yet another object of this invention is to provide a retainer flap for safety helmets which may be folded either into the helmet or extend out of the helmet, and in either position will function to frictionally hold the helmet against movement upon the head and particularly in the downwardly folded position will grip and lock against the base of the skull to prevent shifting of the helmet upon impact.
These and other objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent upon reading the following description of which the attached drawings form a part.
In these drawings:
FIG. 1 is an elevational, cross-sectional view of a safety helmet with the retainer flap in its downward position and showing, in dotted lines, the flap in its upwardly folded position.
FIG. 2 is a perspective, fragmentary view of the rear portion of the helmet, per se.
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary, cross-sectional view of the retainer flap and,
FIG. 4 is a schematic view showing the helmet upon the head of the wearer with the retainer flap in locking position.
Referring to FIG. 1, the helmet is formed of an outer shell 11, and inner shell 12 spaced from the outer shell, between which shells is arranged a relatively thick, resilient shock absorbing layer 13, which may be formed of a foamed plastic material such as foamed polystyrene.
The inner and outer shells may be formed of any suitable, relatively thin material, and preferably a plastic material characterized by being semi-fiexible, but relatively stiff. One suitable material is identified as Royalite 20 manufactured by United States Rubber Company used in a thickness of approximately .030 inch wall thickness.
The forward portions of the shells are formed into a visor 14 configuration and the two shells are bound together by means of an edge bead 15 which encircles the adjacent lower edges thereof and may be adhesively secured thereto to thus secure the shells together.
Arranged within the shell is a head band of the type shown in the patent to Zbikowski No. 3,137,859, issued June 23, 1964. The head band comprises a forward half 17 and a rear half 18 which have side edges that overlap and are releasa'bly inter-connected by means of snap fastener holes formed in the rear half 18 and male snap 3,314,077 Patented Apr. 18, 1967 fastener halves 20 formed on the adjacent edges of the forward half 18. The male snap fastener halves may be engaged with one or another pairs of the holes 19 to thus adjust the circumference of the head band.
Integral with the head band are upwardly extending fastening tabs 21, each secured to the inner shell 12 by means of a mechanical fastening means 22, such as rivets, snap fasteners, or the like. Thus, the head band is secured to the helmet and is arranged to encircle the human head as shown schematically in FIG. 4.
The headband is preferably formed of a relatively thin, resilient, but semi-stiff sheet material such as polyethylene plastic sheet or the like of about .040 inch in thickness, thus being stiff but still being resiliently bendable or springy and adapted to return to normal position upon release of pressure.
A cloth forward head band cover strip 23 covers the forward head band half and is secured thereto by means of stitching 24. Likewise, a rear head band cover strip 25 covers a portion of the rear head band half 18 and is secured thereto by stitches 26. Such cloth may be of a suitable durable fabric or plastic. This cloth forms not only a sweat band, but also frictionallly grips the human head.
The invention herein is concerned primarily with the helmet retainer flap 30 described below. Such flap is in the form of a scoop-shaped sheet formed of an outer cloth face 31 and an inner cloth face 32, which may be the doubled over end of the outer cloth face, between which is sandwiched a stiffening sheet 33 formed of a stiffened fiber material.
The cloth may be secured together by either stitching or by adhesive or the like and the composite sheet 31 is bent at 34 (see FIG, 3) to form a hinge bend. It is further bent at 35 around the lower edge of the rear band 18 and the lower edge of the rear head hand cover strip 25 and secured thereto by the same stitching 26 used for securing the rear head band cover strip. FIG. 3 illustrates the securement of the flap to the rear head band half 18.
The free edges of the retainer flap are covered by a narrow, thickened padding 36 formed of a resilient material, such as a rubber strip or a rubber-like foam plastic strip, thus forming a narrow but continuous padded edge bead 37.
In operation, referring to FIG. 4, the helmet may be worn upon the human head 38 with the retainer flap 30 folded inwardly of the helmet as shown in dotted lines. In this position, the edge head 37 forms a pair of vertical contact lines on opposite sides of the rear of the head along with a horizontal thickened line which reduce the tendency of the helmet to shift upon the head, while at the same time the flap is concealed within the helmet. For many purposes this is adequate to prevent shifting of the helmet while the appearance of the helmet is unaffected by the addition of the flap.
In order to assist the retention ability of the flap, the cloth is preferably formed of a rough textured cloth fabric or plastic which thus has a greater frictional retention against the head.
To more securely lock the helmet upon. the head and to prevent the helmet from shifting in the event of impact, the flap 30 is preferably folded down as shown in FIG. 4 where due to its flexibility, its scoop-like shape conforms to, and covers the base of the skull 39 to thus prevent forward or sideways shifting of the helmet. In such use the c-hinstrap 49, which is secured to the helmet by means of rivets or the like 41, thus prevents the helmet from moving backwards upon the head while the flap prevents side or forward movement of the helmet. In addition, the flap forms a protective guard at the base of the skull, which may be otherwise vulnerable in conditions caused by accidents.
This invention may be further developed within the scope of the following claims. Accordingly, it is desired that the foregoing description be read as being merely illustrative of an operative embodiment of this invention and not in a strictly limited sense.
Having shown an operative embodiment of my invention, I now claim:
1. A safety helmet comprising a downwardly opening protective shell shaped to fit over and to be worn upon a human head, and having a forward end portion and a rear end portion;
a generally, horizontally arranged headband fitted within the helmet for encircling said head;
a retainer flap formed of a sheet of stiffened, fabriclike material, having an upper edge, means securing said upper edge to the headband at the rear portion of the helmet, and a scoop-shaped body portion foldable about said upper edge upwardly into the helmet and downwardly below the helmet to extend below and generally forwardly at an incline relative to the rear portion of the helmet;
said flap being of sufiicient height and width to cover and conform to the base of the skull at the rear portion of the head to thereby frictionally lock the helmet to the head when the flap is folded downwardly;
the free edges of said flap being formed with a continuous, narrow, thickened padding strip; and said head-band being formed of a thin strip of semi-stiff plastic material, and having a cloth-like strip secured along and covering the front portion thereof to engage the forehead of the head of the wearer with the flap engaging the rear portion of the head, and the head engaging surface of the flap being roughly textured to thus frictionally grip against and engage the helmet upon the head.
2. A retainer flap in combination with a protective safety helmet shaped to fit over and to be worn upon a human head and having a forward end portion and a rear end portion, comprising:
a scoop-shaped sheet of stiffened, fabric-like material, having an upper edge, means securing said upper edge to the rear end portion of the helmet, with the flap normally extending downwardly and forwardly at an incline relative to the helmet;
the flap being of a relatively narrow width and of sufiicient height to cover and snugly engage only the base of the skull at the rear portion of the head, from a point rearwardly of each of the wearers ears and downwardly to the upper part of the neck, thereby leaving exposed, the wearers ears and neck and frictionally locking the helmet upon the head by grasping the curved, rearward lower portion of the skull.
3. A construction as defined in claim 7, and said flap being foldable, about said upper edge, upwardly into the helmet to cover the interior of the rear portion of the helmet and contact the rear of the wearers head;
thickened edge beads formed on the side edges of the flap, said beads being generally located in vertical planes when the flap is folded within the helmet, wherein the side edges of the flap more tightly press against and confine the rear end portion of the skull, which contacts the flap between the beads, against movement relative to the helmet.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 691,623 1/1902 Harris 2172 2,802,212 8/1957 Finken 23 2,991,478 7/1961 Zbikowski 23 3,039,108 6/1962 Lohrenz 23 3,055,012 9/1962 Aileo 2--3 JORDAN FRANKLIN, Primary Examiner.
J. R. BOLER, Assistant Examiner.