US 3603115 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patet  Inventors Patricia 1. Elzey 7403 East 3rd, Downey, Calif. 94014; John J. Weidkneeht, 8032 Dabury Ln., La Palma, Calif. ] Appl. No. 868,308  Filed Oct. 22, 1969  Patented Sept. 7, 1971  CONNECTOR FOR FLEXIBLE KNITTING NEEDLE 2 Claims, 5 Drawing Figs.
 U.S. Cl 66/117  ...D04b35/02  Field of Search 66/116, 1 17, 1.5, 1 18  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,298,033 3/1919 Gaddess A. 66/l17 1,967,005 7/1934 Carlson 66/l l7 2,118,210 5/1938 Luther 66/117 2,504,350 4/1950 Reeves 66/117 X 3,438,223 4/1969 Linstead 66/116 X Primary ExaminerRona1d Feldbaum Attorney-John T. Matlago ABSTRACT: A single connector provided with a pair of transverse openings in which the respective rigid end portions of a flexible knitting needle can be inserted and secured together such that the stitches of an article being knitted and held on a flexible intermediate portion cannot slip off the end portions of the needle. One of the openings in the connector is formed to gauge the size ofthe needle when the end portion is inserted therein and to secure the end portion upon its further insertion therein.
CONNECTOR FOR FLEXIBLE KNITTING NEEDLE This invention relates'to attachments for flexible knitting needles and more particularly to a readily engageable connector for holding together the rigid outer end portions of such a needle.
In the art of hand or weft knitting it is desirable to prevent an article being knitted on a needle from unraveling while it is being temporarily stored. Needles often have a point on only one end and a knob on the other end to keep the stitches from dropping off. It has been the practice in the past to provide a cover or protector on the pointed ends of such needles when the article being knitted is laid aside. Inasmuch as a knitter usually works with two needles, a popular type of a needle is one formed of rigid outer end portions interconnected by a flexible thin filament portion formed of nylon. In this form of a needle, not only can either one or both points of the needle be used for knitting, but, the flexible nylon interconnecting portion facilitates the knitting of circular or large articles. In the past, individual protectors have also been provided for the ends of such a needle. However, because of the flexibility of the nylon interconnecting portion, the relative position and location of the individual rigid outer end portions of the needle are cumbersome to control and inconvenient to handle and hence the provision of individual protectors on the ends of such a needle have not proven to be satisfactory. Accordingly, one of the features of the present invention is to provide a single connector with a pair of openings in the body thereof in which the rigid outer end portions of a flexible knitting needle can be securely inserted and thus held together in a fixed relative position during the time that an article being knitted on the flexible interconnecting portion of the needle is temporarily being laid aside.
Needles employed for knitting come in a variety of sizes usually dependent upon the size of the yarn used. For example, large-diameter needles with thick yarns are used when a loose knit is desired, while smaller diameter needles with thinner yarns are used when a tighter knit is desired. Moreover, it is not uncommon to change to a needle of different size during the knitting of different areas of the same article in order to obtain the desired type of knit. Thus it is highly important for a knitter to be assured at all times that the proper gage needle is being used, and when he is so concerned, a knitter will take the trouble to check the size of the knitting needle being used by making reference to a template having various size openings in which the needle can be inserted to determine its size. Accordingly, another feature of the present invention simplifies the checking of the size of a needle being used for knitting by providing for one of the openings in the connector to gage the size of the needle as the outer end portion of the needle is being inserted in the opening so as to be securely held therein.
These and other features of the invention will become apparent from the following description of the preferred em-- bodiment in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view showing the connector of the present invention with the outer end portions of a flexible needle inserted in openings provided in the body thereof;
FIG. 2 is a front view of the connector;
FIG a sectional view of the connector taken along lines 33 of FIG. 2 and showing the end portion of the needle being initially inserted into the opening for determination of the proper size of theneedle;
FIG. 4 is the same sectional view of the connector illustrated in FIG. 3 and showing the end portion of the needle further inserted in a secured position in the opening; and
FIG. 5 is another sectional view of the connector .taken along line 5-5 of FIG. 2 showing the tapered opening provided for securing the other end portion of the needle in the connector. Referring to FIG. 1 of the drawings, a flexible needle I0 is shown with ends 12 and 13 of its respective rigid outer end portions 14 and 15 inserted through respective openings 22 and 23 provided in connector 20. The rigid outer end portions 14 and 15 of the needle 10 are preferably formed of lightweight metal and the respective outer ends 12 and I3 thereof are tapered. The inner ends 16 and 17 of the respective rigid outer body portions of the needle are bent slightly inwardly and are flexibly interconnected by an intermediate thin filament portion 21 of plastic such as nylon. The stitches of the article 25 being knitted are held on the flexible intermediate filament portion. When the ends 12 and 13 of the needle 10 are inserted through openings 22 and 23 provided in bosses l8 and 19 formed on the body of connector 20, as shown, the stitches placed on the nylon intermediate filament portion 21 of the needle are prevented from coming off the ends of the needle. The connector 20 is formed with one of its openings 23 provided in the body thereof dimensioned to fit the outer end portion 15 of the desired-gage needle. The other opening 22 provided in the body is displaced below opening 23 and oriented at substantially right angles to the first with its inner wall slightly tapered so as to provide a secure fit for the end of the outer end portion 14 of the needle. The connector 20 is preferably marked or distinguished by color to show that its gaged opening 23 is formed to hold a given size needle. As shown in FIG. 3, upon first inserting the end of the outer end portion 15 of the needle in the gaged opening 23, the diameter of the outer end portion 15 accurately fits in the opening 23 to assure its proper size. As shown in FIG. 4, upon being further inserted into the opening 23, the end 13 engages snugly up against the neck 27 provided near the outer end of the opening 23. Thus the accurate dimension of the gaged opening 23 in the connector 20 assures that the proper size needle is being used, and the insertion of the end 13 further into the opening assures that the outer end portion 15 of the needle is securely held in the opening 23. As shown in FIG. 5, the other end 12 of the needle 10 is inserted in the tapered opening 22 of the connector 20. The ends of the outer end portions of the needle, asshown, are preferably securely positioned together in openings 22 and 23 with only a portion of their respective tapered ends 12 and 13 extending out of the body of the connector It should be noted that the openings 22 and 23 in the connector provide for holding the end portions of the needle generally in the same angular relative position that they assume during the knitting operation, thus assuring that the par tially knitted article is held on the needle without being stretched or subject to any strains which could affect the tightness of the knit or the desired shape of the article. It should be further noted that the bosses 18 and 19 on the sides of the body of the connector which provide the entrance of the respective openings 22 and 23 are preferably formed to provide flat surfaces with rounded edges against which a knitter can push with the thumb of one hand while grasping the respective rigid end portion of the needle with the fingers of the hand to thereby remove the connector from one or both ends of the needle so as to resume knitting of the article.
While the connector shown and described herein is admirably adapted to fulfill the features of advantages previously mentioned as desirable, it is to be understood that the invention is not to be limited to the specific features shown and described but that the means and construction herein disclosed are susceptable of modification in form, proportion, and arrangement of parts without departing from the principle involved or sacrificing any of its advantages, and the invention is therefore claimed in embodiments of various forms all coming within the scope of the claims which follow.
What is claimed is;
l. A knitting needle combination comprising a generally circular knitting needle having a thin, flexible intermediate portion and opposite rigid outer end portions terminating in tapered ends, and an end connector for holding together the outer end portions of said needle, said end connector comprising a body having a first opening extending therethrough in which one of the outer end portions of said needle is inserted, and having a spaced second opening extending therethrough at substantially a right angle to said first opening in which the through said body is tapered so as to securely engage the tapered end of the other outer end portion of the needle upon the insertion of the other outer end portion therein.
2. The invention in accordance with claim 1 wherein the body of said connector is moulded with a boss on one end thereof in the center of which said first opening is formed, and with a boss on the side thereof, displaced from the first boss, in the center of which said second opening is formed.