US 3730290 A
This specification discloses a stethoscope comprising a frame including a pair of arms extending from a medial spring section. The arms are of plastic and are of an open "U" channel construction in cross section. Opposite ends of the arms are smooth curved to form short sections facing each other. A stiffening button is located at the mid-section of the medial spring section. Sound tubes are positioned in the open "U" channels. Ends of the tubes extend beyond the short sections to accommodate ear pieces. The opposite ends of tubes exit from the open "U" channels to meet so as to form a cable. There are no sharp bends nor abrupt turns in the tubes from the point of entry into the open "U" channels to the ear pieces.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 1 11 3,7305290 1.451 May 1, 1.973
Scanlon [s 1 STETHOSCOPE  Inventor: Thomas Albert Scanlon, Barrington,
 Assignee: Avid Corporation, East Providence,
 Filed: Aug. 18, 1972 Appl. No.: 281,956
Us. (:1. ..1s1/24 51 1111.01. ..A6lb7/02 5s FieldofSearch Hun/24,313
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,490,947 4/1924 Spach ..l8l/24 3,541,219 12/1970, Bothos... ...1s1/24 3,623,571 11/1971 French ...1s1/24 3,682,268 8/1972 Gorike l 8 1/24 Primary ExaminerStephen J. Tomsky Att0rneyWilliam Frederick Werner [5 7] ABSTRACT This specification discloses a stethoscope comprising a frame including a pair of arms extending from a medial spring section. The arms are of plastic and are of an open U channel construction in cross section. Opposite ends of the arms are smooth curved to form short sections facing each other. A stiffening button is located at the mid-section of the medial-spring section. Sound tubes are positioned in the open U channels. Ends of the tubes extend beyond the short sections to accommodate ear pieces. The opposite ends of tubes exit from the open U channels to meet so as to form a cable. There are no sharp bends nor abrupt turns in the tubes from the point of entry into the open U channels to the ear pieces.
The present invention relates to stethoscopes of the type commonly employed by air line passengers for use with entertaining sound apparatus and is concerned primarily with a stethoscope which may be comfortably applied to and suspended from the ear canals of an air line passenger and which includes sound tubes that are free of sharp and abrupt turns whereby sterophonic high fidelity sound frequency is maintained from the original source of the sound.
4 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures STETHOSCOPE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION concerned. The device of this patent includes two arms which may be swung from a collapsed position of nonuse into an open position of use through a ratchet type pivotal connection.
Because the human ear canal is a sensitive organ, any weight suspending therefrom, in time, causes discomfort. This is particularly true when an air passenger watches a movie of more than an hour and a half duration.
Another factor is hygenic. Once a stethoscope is used by an air passenger, the stethoscope must be made hygienic before it can be given to another passenger for use. This cleansing process is costly. It is preferable to manufacture a stethoscope of such low cost that it can be thrown away after one use.
OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION for hours it will cause no discomfort.
2. To provide a stethoscope'of such construction that manufacturing costs make possible the economic fact that the stethoscope may be discarded after use by one passenger.
3. To provide a stethoscope of such construction that the frequency response in stereophonic sound is maintained as the sound waves pass through the stethoscope.
Various other more detailed objects and advantages of the invention such as arise in connection with carrying out the above noted ideas in a practical embodiment will in part become apparent and in part be hereinafter stated as the description of the invention proceeds.
Referring to the drawings in which similar characters of reference indicate corresponding parts in all the figures:
FIG. 1 is a front elevational view embodying the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a rear elevational view of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a perspective ofview of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a right end view ofFIG. 1;
FIG. 5 is a top plan view of FIG. 1;
FIG. 6 is a bottom plan view of FIG. 1;
FIG. 7 is a horizontal cross-sectional view, taken on line 7-7 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 8 is a fragmentary perspective view showing the guide finger construction;
FIG. 9 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken on line 9-9 of FIG. 2 showing an ear tip attached to a sound tube.
Referring to the drawings, a stethoscope is shown comprising a frame consisting of two arms identified generally as 10 and 11 extending from a medial spring section 12. The arms 10, 11 are of substantially identical construction, hence, the construction of only one is described in detail. Thus, each frame arm 10, 11 comprises a main body portion 13, a short section 14 integrally joined to body portion 13 by a bend or smooth curve 15.
Arms 10, 11 are preferably of plastic and are .provided witha channel 16. Channel 16 consists of two walls l7, l8 integrally connected to body portion 13.
The construction of channel 16 makes arms 10, ll,
rigid. Channel 16 is continued from the free end of short section 14, through frame arms 10, 11 to the medial spring section 12 where body portion 13 and wall 17 terminate, converting wall 18 into a medial spring section 12. Guide fingers 20 projects from the ends of walls 18 at the termination of body portion 13. A stiffening button 21 is integrally formed as part of medial spring section 12 or is attached thereto to provide a means for controlling the degree of resiliency in medial spring section 12. The lesser volume of material in stiffening button 21 the greater the force acting through medial spring section 12 to bring oppositely located short sections 14 toward each other. The greater the volume of material in stiffening button 21 the greater the force acting through medial spring section 12 to hold oppositely located short sections 14 apart.
A pair of sound wave carrying tubes are designated 29. The ends of sound wave carrying tubes 29, are connected to sound apparatus such as the transducer of US. Pat. No. 3,463,886 by means ofa transducer jack 32 (see FIG. 3). These tubes are ordinarily fabricated from synthetic rubber. Each tube 29 enters one of the channels 16 of arms 10, 11 at guide fingers 20 where the sound carrying tubes 29 extend beyond the ends of short sections 14 an amount sufficient to accommodate and have ear pieces 30 attached thereto. It is evident that from the point of entry of each tube 29 at fingers 20 of channels 16, tube 29 is subject to no sharp bend or abrupt turn so as would interrupt the sound wave carrying volume of tubes 29. The tubes 29 below fingers 20 may be brought together as at 31 in cable fashion.
As shown in FIG. 4 wall 17 may be tapered as a manufacturing expediency. Retaining lugs 34 hold sound wave carrying tubes 29 in short sections 14.
Ear pieces 30 may be fabricated from sponge rubber and constructed in accordance with U. 8. Pat. NO. 3,539,031.
In use stero sound wave carrying tubes 29 are positioned in channels 16 of arms 10 and 11. The ear tips 30 attached to the ends of tubes 29 at oppositely located short sections 14, are held in preselected spaced relation by medial spring section 12 and stiffening button 21 as dictated at the time of fabrication. The arms 10, 11 may be spread apart to accommodate the sides of a passengers head, so that the car tips 30 may enter the ear canal of a passenger and be held there by the tension of medial spring section 12. It has been found that the present construction is not only inexpensive to manufacture but the tension forcing eartips toward each other is sensitive and light for comfortable insertion in an ear canal while having a minimum weight suspending from the ear canal.
Having shown and described a preferred embodiment of the present invention by way of example, it should be realized that structural changes could be made and other examples given without departing from either the spirit or scope of this invention.
What I claim is: 1. In a stethoscope a. a frame comprising a pair of arms extending from a medial spring section, I b. each of said arms having a body portion and a short section integrally joined to said body portion by a smooth curve, I c. each of said arms being provided with a channel consisting of two walls integrally connected to said body portion,
each am being made rigid by means of said channel, e. each channel continuing from the free end of the short section through the arms of said frame to the medial spring section, where the body portion and one of said two walls terminate, converting the other of said two walls into said medial spring section, I f. a pair of sound wave carrying tubes located,
respectively, in the channel of said pair of arms,
g. each of said pair of sound wave carrying tubes extending respectively, beyond the short section of the body portion,
h. a pair of ear pieces, and
i. means attaching, respectively, said pair of ear pieces to said pair of sound wave carrying tubes,
j. said medial spring section holding said pair of ear pieces in spaced relation.
2. The stethoscope of claim 1 in which a pair of guide fingers project from one of said walls at the termination of said body portion.
3. The stethoscope of claim 1 in which a stiffening button is attached to said media] spring section to control the degree of resiliency of said medial spring section.
4. The stethoscope of claim 1 having means to fasten, respectively, said sound tubes in said short sections.