|Publication number||US3827107 A|
|Publication date||Aug 6, 1974|
|Filing date||Jan 10, 1973|
|Priority date||Jan 10, 1973|
|Publication number||US 3827107 A, US 3827107A, US-A-3827107, US3827107 A, US3827107A|
|Original Assignee||R Moore|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (5), Referenced by (28), Classifications (17)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
States Patent [1 1 [451 Aug. 6, 1974 1 ADJUSTABLE STRAP ASSEMBLY  Appl. No.: 322,507
 US. Cl 124/16 R, 24/204, 128/DIG. 15  Int. Cl A44b 21/00, B65d 63/00  Field of Search 128/DIG. 15; 2/DIG. 6;
24/DIG. 18, 265 WS, 265 R, 16 R, 17 AP, 16 PB, 73 R, 73 ES, 73 GC, 87 R, 204, 203, 16
FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS France 24/204 Primary Examiner-Donald A. Griffin Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Harris Zimmerman [5 7] ABSTRACT A strap or belt assembly in which a strap is attached to one portion of a garment, orthopedic brace or the like. Another portion of such garment is provided with a ring or buckle through which the strap end may be passed and pulled upon to variably tighten the garment portions. One surface of the strap is provided with the loop portion of a pile fabric of the type shown in US. Pat. No. 3,009,235. A piece of material having locking hook elements is fixedly or removably secured to the strap in such manner that the strap can be releasably locked adjacent the buckle irrespective of the respective positions of the two garment portions.
12 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures ADJUSTABLE STRAP ASSEMBLY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Numerous arrangements have heretofore been devised for releasably joining together confronting or adjacent portions of a garment or the like in such manner that the garment will generally snugly embrace a portion of the wearers body. In this sense, the term garment is being used to include orthopedic or medical appliances in the nature of bandages, braces or the like which are wrapped around the wearers body, such as around an arm or a leg.
Where it is necessary for a single size garment unit to embrace different sized patients, usually one end portion of the garment is provided with one or more resilient straps, and the confronting portion of the garment is provided with one or more buckles. An end of the strap is passed through the buckle and pulled to tighten the garment to the desired degree. To retain this desired degree of tightness, various fasteners have been utilized, and one that has found particular favor in the medical profession is the use of pile fabric generally described in U.S. Pat. No. 3,009,235, and sold by American Velcro, Inc., under the trademark VELCRO. Briefly, such fabric comprises complementary gripping surfaces, one generally including loop elements, and the other generally including hook elements.
The strap has therefore been constructed with a surface thereof provided with the loop elements, and adjacent the strap end, with a surface having the hook elements. Thus, when the end of the strap including the hooks is passed through the buckle, and the strap doubled back on itself, the hooked end portion may engage and releasably lock itself onto a selective portion of the looped portion to hold the garment in place.
With the foregoing arrangement, it will be understood that in order to provide for substantially uniform adjustment of the garment unit on different sized patients, the strap must be provided with a substantial length of fabric pile possessing the loop elements. Also, where the garment is being employed around a smaller anatomical part, the end portion of the strap which bears the hook elements will, in its tightened condition, be spaced an undesirable distance from the buckle, and permit relative movement thereat.
In accordance with the teachings of the present invention, the strap may be formed of a shorter length of, for example, the loop portion; and in one arrangement, a short length of material having hook portions on both surfaces thereof, interposed between the strap portions substantially immediately adjacent the buckle. In another embodiment, the short length of material may permanently be attached to the strap end, but inverted between the overlapping strapportions adjacent the buckle.
In another case, the pad containing a double surface hooked portion eliminates the requirement for an excessively long length of looped portion on the strap, and also provides for the desirable securing of the strap adjacent the buckle.
THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an adjustable strap assembly in which the hooked pad is permanently attached to the strap;
FIG. 2 is another perspective view showing a different position of the strap;
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the strap assembly of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the device similar to FIG. 3, but showing the strap assembly of FIG. 2; and
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a modified form of the invention in which the pad is separate from the strap.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT In broad terms, the adjustable strap assembly of the present invention is adapted for use with any garment 10 having separate portions 12 and 14 which are adapted to be brought into adjacent relation and releasabl'y secured together with a desired degree of tightness. As previously mentioned, as the term garment as used herein, is meant to include any article formed of relatively flexible material for encompassing a portion of the wearers anatomy, and thus includes neck braces, arm, leg or knee braces, body encircling appliances, etc. In all of such arrangements, end portions of the garment are brought into adjacent relationship and secured in such relationship.
Secured to the garment portion 12 is any suitable strap-receiving ring, loop or metal or other rigid buckle 16 which may be-attached to a short length of material 18 which is stitched or otherwise fastened to the portion 12 as indicated at 20. The length of the buckle is shown as parallel to the edge of garment portion 12.
It has previously been discussed that it is old in the art to attach a strap to the other garment portion 14 and to pull an end of the strap through the buckle to thereby pull the garment portions together. However, even where pile fabric fasteners such as taught by US Pat. No. 3,009,235 are used on portions of the strap for releasably securing the strap on its desired degree of tautness, it has been found that either an uneconomical length of relatively expensive VELCRO material is required, or the resulting fastening occurs in an undesirable spaced relationship to the buckle, or both.
Thus, in accordance with this invention, a strap, generally indicated at 24 has one end portion fixedly secured to the garment portion 14 in any suitable manner to thereby leave a free length of strap capable of being threaded through the buckle l6 and doubled back on itself.
One surface of the strap, here shown as the outer surface, corresponding to the outer surface of the garment portion, is provided with the loop elements 26 of a VELCRO type fastener. A short pad 28 is attached to the end of the strap and unlike most complementary gripping arrangements, both surfaces 30 and 32 of the pads are provided with hooking elements capable of interlocking engagement with the loop elements 26.
Thus, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 3, if the strap is sufficiently tight just after the pad 23 has been pulled through the buckle or ring 16, the pad may be placed against the loop elements 26 adjacent the buckle and the hook elements on surface 32 will interlock with the loops to hold the strap in place.
Where, however, more strap must be pulled through the buckle to obtain a desired degree of cinching of the garment, the end of the strap may be doubled back on itself and inserted between the confronting portions of the strap adjacent the buckle, and in this instance both pad surfaces and 32 will interlock with confronting loop portions of the strap, and maintain the strap in position relative to the garment. This is best shown in FIGS. 2 and 4 of the drawing.
For reasons of convenience, the pad 28 is preferably attached permanently to the strap and constitutes the distal end portion of the same. However, as shown in FIG. 5, the pad, designated at 38, may be formed as a separate piece, and after the strap 24 is threaded through the buckle ring, and before the free end of the strap is doubled back on itself with the looped pile portions in confronting relation, one surface of the pad 38 may be inserted against one portion brought against the buckle, and the other strap portion brought against the other surface of the pad. Just as in the case of the pad 28, both surfaces of pad 38 are formed with the hook elements.
It will be understood that the interlocking pile elements might be reversed, i.e., the loop elements provided on the pad and the hook elements positioned on the strap.
While the foregoing description has been primarily directed to the environment of a garment, it should be understood that there are also other uses and other advantages in the use of a piece of material having the same pile elements disposed on each surface thereof. For example, if the piece of material or pad 38 is separate from the garment, the garment may be laundered or otherwise cleaned without tangling or catching. This is particularly true if the pile elements on the garment are loops, which do not tend to catch on or adhere to other surfaces.
Also, the pad or piece of material having pile elements on both surfaces can be used for other attaching purposes. For example, it might be used as a hanger. Also, certain articles, such as bed sheets, might be made with loop pile elements and the piece of material with hook elements on both surfaces to thereby releasably secure the ends of the sheets together or to a matress or the like.
1. An adjustable strap assembly comprising a length of flexible resilient strap, one surface of said strap being provided with a pile fabric having first interlocking elements secured thereto, a pad comprising a short length of material having both surfaces thereof provided with a pile fabric having second interlocking elements secured thereto, one of said elements comprising hooking elements extending generally vertically from its surface and one of said elements comprising loop elements, said elements interlocking with each other when the surfaces from which they extend are brought into confronting contiguous relationship, and a buckle through which said strap may be passed, said pad releasably interlocking with said strap adjacent said buckle.
2. An assembly as set forth in claim 1 in which said pad constitutes the terminal portion of said strap.
3. An assembly as set forth in claim 1 in which said pad surfaces are provided with said hooking elements and said strap surface is provided with said loop elements.
4. An assembly as set forth in claim 1 in which said pad constitutes the terminal portion of said strap and both surfaces thereof are secured to opposed portions of said strap adjacent said buckle.
5. An assembly as set forth in claim 1 in which one surface of said pad interlocks with a portion of said strap adjacent said buckle.
6. An adjustable strap assembly comprising a length of flexible resilient strap provided with a first interlocking element of a first type on one side thereof, and a separate pad provided with second and third interlocking elements of a second type on opposite sides of said pad, a first portion of said strap extending generally in a first direction and a second portion of said strap divergently and reentrantly looping and reversedly extending in a second direction generally parallel to said first direction, said pad second interlocking element cooperatively engaging said first interlocking element of said strap first portion, and said pad third interlocking element cooperatively engaging said first interlocking element of said strap second portion, said first type of interlocking element comprising a pile fabric having loops, and said second type of interlocking element comprising fabric having hook.
7. An assembly as set forth in claim 6 further including a buckle element about which said second portion of said strap divergently and reentrantly loops,
8. An adjustable strap assembly comprising a length of flexible resilient strap provided with a first interlocking element of a first type on one side thereof, and a separate pad provided with second and third interlocking elements of a second type of opposite sides of said pad, a first portion of said strap extending generally in a first direction and a second portion of said strap divergently and reentrantly looping and reversedly extending in a second direction generally parallel to said first direction, said pad second interlocking element cooperatively engaging said first interlocking element of said strap first portion, and said pad third interlocking element cooperatively engaging said first interlocking element of said strap second portion, said first type of interlocking element comprising fabric having hooks, and saidsecond type of interlocking element comprising a pile fabric having loops.
9. An adjustable strap assembly comprising a length of flexible resilient strap provided with a first interlocking element of a first type, a terminal portion of said strap being provided with second and third interlocking elements of a second type on opposite sides thereof, said strap in a first position of adjustment having a first portion thereof extending generally in a first direction and a second portion thereof divergently and reentrantly looping and reversedly extending in a second direction generally parallel to said first direction, said second interlocking element of said strap terminal portion cooperatively engaging said first interlocking element of said strap first portion; and said strap in a second position of adjustment having a first portion thereof extending generally in said first direction, a second portion thereof divergently and reentrantly looping and reversedly extending in said second direction, and a third portion thereof divergently and reetrantly looping and reversedly extending in said first direction, said second interlocking element of said strap terminal portion cooperatively engaging said first interlocking element of said strap first portion, and said third interlocking element of said strap terminal portion cooperatively engaging said first interlocking element of said strap second portion.
element comprises fabric having hooks.
12. An assembly as set forth in claim 9 wherein said first type of interlocking element comprises a fabric having hooks, andsaid second type of interlocking element comprises a pile fabric having loops.
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|U.S. Classification||24/16.00R, 128/DIG.150|
|International Classification||A61F13/00, A44B18/00, A61F13/56, A61F15/00|
|Cooperative Classification||A61F13/10, A61F2013/00565, A61F13/62, A61F13/06, Y10S128/15, A44B18/00, A61F15/006|
|European Classification||A61F13/10, A61F13/06, A61F15/00F, A44B18/00|