US 3905378 A
A method for making a man's hairpiece comprising a nonwoven network foundation and weighing approximately 6 grams is described. Monofilament nylon strands are molecularly bonded to form a rectangular network which is then shaped and cut to form a foundation. Hair fibers are secured to the bond points in a manner simulating natural growth.
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 Levin et al.
[ HAIRPIECE WITH MOLECULARLY BONDED FOUNDATION AND METHOD FOR MAKING SAME  Inventors: Donald Levin, Los Angeles; Walter D. Ward, Newport Beach, both of Calif.
 Assignee: Esthetic Hair, Inc., Los Angeles,
 Filed: Mar. 29, 1974  Appl. No.: 456,277
52 us. c1 132/5; 132/7 51 Int.Cl. ..A41G 3/00  Field of Search 132/5, 53, 54; 46/172;
 References Cited UNlTED STATES PATENTS 1,148,539 Samuel 132/53 1 1 Sept. 16, 1975 1,490,479 4/1924 Noel 132/53 2,405,791 8/1946 Lamoureux 46/172 3,037,261 6/1962 Hess 28/74 3,162,203 12/1964 Cramer 132/5 3,211,159 10/1965 Goble 132/7 3,421,521 Rich, Jr... 132/5 Primary Exar'rziner'G. E. McNeill Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Philip Hoffman [5 7] ABSTRACT A method for making a mans hairpiece comprising a nonwoven network foundation and weighing approximately 6 grams is described. Monofilament nylon strands are molecularly bonded to form a rectangular network which is then shaped and cut to form a foundation. Hair fibers are secured to the bond points in a manner simulating natural growth.
6 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures PATENTED SEP 1 61575 Fig. 3.
HAIRPIECE WITH MOLECULARLY BONDED FOUNDATION AND METHOD FOR MAKING SAME known. Typically, the foundation is woven ofa light material such as silk and then shaped and cut to fit the shape and size of a human head. Often the foundation comprises a second layer of material, such as a coating of rubber. This is usually done in an effort to add sturdiness to the foundation, since the woven mesh is easily torn or warped. However, it makes the hairpiece heavy,
causing discomfort to the user. It would be desirable to have a hairpiece which is light and essentially undetectable when worn and which does not warp or tear under normal use. 1
Typical hairpieces are made with vitually no density control of the hair fibers which are spaced microscopically close together in an effort to hide thefoundation. As a result, the hairpieces all resemble a thick head of hair. It would be desirable to have a method for making hairpieces which provides for density control of the hair fibers without rendering the foundation detectable. This would allow the manufacture of hairpieces resembling a thin head of hair.
In the usual woven hairpiece, strands of hair or fibers,
are individually attached to the patterned portion of the foundation and then cut and styled as desired. Styling is generally accomplished by curling and setting of the hairs in the hairpiece. However, the natural growth pattern of human hair on human heads is ignored. It would be desirable to have a hairpiece whose styling contemplates natural hair growth patterns.
A typical complaint about hairpieces is that they must be removed and reapplied each day. This is because the oil in the scalp causes the hairpiece to slip and slide. It would be desirable to have a hairpiece sufficiently ventilated and strongly secured to the scalp so that the scalp could be washed and excess oil removed without loosening the hairpiece. I
Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide a hairpiece having a nonwoven foundation that is lightweight and not easily warped or torn by normal use.
It is another object of this invention to provide a hairpiece which can be worn for several days at a time and which can be washed and combed like a real head of hair without removal from the scalp.
Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a method for making hairpieces which incorporates simulated natural growth patterns in the styling and shaping of the hair fibers.
A further object of this invention is to provide a method for making a hairpiece, foundation comprising a nonwoven molecularly bonded network.
These and other objects and advantages of the present invention are achieved by a method for making hairpieces comprising forming a nonwoven network which is essentially rectangularly patterned. This is accomplished by: spacing a plurality of first strands essentially parallel to one another in a first plane in aframe; spacing a plurality of second strands essentially parallel and second strands at their;intersections. The method I further comprises shaping the network to conform to a predetermined head shape; cutting the shaped network according to a predetermined pattern to form a founda: tion; securing anchors tothe foundation; and affixing hair fibers to the foundation according to a predetermined style. 1 r r The invention is described in greatendetail in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which: I
FIG. 1 is a partial plan view of a rigid frame used in the process of the invention to prepare the network for bonding; T
FIG. 2. is a perspectiye view of an ultrasonic bonding machine usedin the process of the invention to bond the network; I j
FIG. 3 is aperspectiveviewof acollapsi ble frame and a heating form usedin shaping the network of FIG. 2;- a u FIG. 4 is a" perspective view of the network of FIG, 2 shaped as desired; j
FIG. Sis a plan view ofa foundation formed in accordance with this invention with anchor pads disposed thereon; I 7 I g I FIG. 6 is a cross sectional elevational view of the anchor pads of FIG. 5; I v v I FIG. 7 is a plan view of a hair fiber secured to a bonded joint on, the foundation of FIG. 5;
FIGS.v and 9 show distin ct stylings of hairpieces made according to this invention; and
FIG. 10 is a plan view of a completed hairpiece in accordance with thisinvention. j
Referringnow to FIG. 1, there is shown a rigid rectangular frame 2 with nails 4 embedded on each side thereof. Foundation material in the formof transparent extruded monofilament plastic 6 is anchored to a corner anchor 8 and then strung tautly on the frame as fol lows. The extruded plastic 6 is wrapped about the first nail 4a in one vertical side 7 a of the frame 2. drawn horizontally, across the frame 2 to the opposite vertical side 7b thereof whereit is wrapped around the first nail 4b thereof. Thereafter, the process is repeated and the plastic filament 6 wound back and forth over the frame 2 and about the nails 4 in the vertical sides 7;! and 7b until a series of ,horizontal filament portions 10a are ment portions 10b tautly disposed in the frame 2 directly above andperpendicular to the horizontal filament portions 10a. The result is an essentially rectangular pattern of filaments held taut in the frame 2.
A typical frame 2 may be about 15 inches square with about nails 4 ,along each side. The filament material may be of any suitable lightweight transparent plastic materialsuch as monofilament nylon, for example. For a uniform arrangement of the filament portions 10, the nails 4 should be uniform in size and spacing. Thus, for example, if the nails were 0.055 inches in diameter and spaced 0.110 inches apart from center to center, the filament portions 10 would all be spaced 0.055 inches center to center. If the filament portions 10 were 0.005 inches'th ic k, the clearance between adjacent filament portions would be 0.050 inches.
For reasons which will be made clear subsequently, precise uniformity of spacing between filament portions 10 may not be desired. In such case, the nails 4 may be varied in size and spaced in such a manner as will produce the actually desired pattern of filament portions 10. In any event, however, the filament portions 10a will be essentially parallel to one another, and the filament portions 10b will also be essentially parallel to one another and essentially perpendicular to filament portions 104:.
FIG. 2 shows an ultrasonic bonding machine 12 comprising a base 14, a press 16, and a platform 17. The frame 2 fits over the platform 17 so that the filament portions 10 rest thereon. The press 16 is brought down on the filaments 10 with a pressure of approximately between 53,000 and 63,000 psi. The temperature applied by the press to the filaments is set at approximately between 400 and 435 Fahrenheit, and the machine is turned on for a period of time not exceeding essentially 2 seconds. The pressures, temperatures, and times designated above are intended to be used for filaments essentially of the size mentioned hereinbefore. If the filament size is appreciably larger, then greater pressures, temperatures and/or lengths of time than are designated may be required. The ultrasonic bonding machine 12 shown forms molecular bonds between the vertical filaments and the horizontal filaments at their intersections. Other molecular bonding machines which are otherwise compatible with the process of this invention are also satisfactory. Molecular bonding provides for stronger bonds between intersecting filaments l which will not separate or shred under normal use. This eliminates the need for stiff boundary structure around the perimeter of the foundation or for underlying or overlying layers of rubber or other structural material as are used in conventional hairpieces. The foundation herein is thereby rendered more than an order of magnitude lighter than conventional hairpiece foun dations. Specifically, the foundation herein may weigh approximately from 2 to 7 grams, opposed to 50 grams or more for conventional hairpieces.
Once the bonding is completed, the bonded filaments form a rectangular network 18. The network 18 is removed from the frame 2 by cutting the ends of the filaments near the nails 4.
Styling of the hairpiece actually begins with the formation of the network 18. The spacing of the filaments 10 in the frame 2 is determined by the density of hair desired. The closer the filaments 10 are to one another, the greater will be the density of hair and therefore the thicker will be the hairpiece. If a thin look is desired at the top and a thick look at the sides, the filaments will be spaced closer at the sides and farther apart at the center.
The network 18 is now tautly secured to the arms 20 of a shaping frame 22 shown in FIG. 3. It is then brought firmly into contact with a heated form 24,
causing the network 18 to conform to the shape of the form 24. The purpose of this step is to make the network 18 conform to a human head shape. There are approximately 10 or 12 basic human head shapes, of which the form 24 will be one. The arms 20 are hinged at the corners 26 of the frame 22 so that when the network 18 is forced against the form 24, the arms 20 can move inwardly, as shown in the dotted position in FIG. 3. This allows the network 18 to follow the shape of the form 24 without stretching or warping. The heat applied to the network 18 by the form 24 causes the network 18 to hold the shape of the form 24. FIG. 4 shows a shaped network 28 after it is shaped by the form 24.
The customer is now fitted with a shape network 28 which conforms essentially to the shape of his head. Since there are about 10 or 12 basic head shapes, the manufacturer may have several of each shape on hand so that no matter who the customer, there would be a shaped network 28 to substantially fit him. Furthermore, each of the several networks 28 of the same shape may be of varied filament spacing, so that the customer could choose a network 28 to fit the hair style he desires. Alternatively, the network 28 could be tailor-made to the customers specifications. In any case, when the proper network 28 is fitted on the customers head, an outline 30 is traced thereon to conform to his hairline. The network 28 of FIG. 4 is then trimmed along the outline 30 to form the hairpiece foundation 32 shown in plan view in FIG. 5.
In order to be able'to secure the finished hairpiece to the scalp, several anchors 34 are secured to the foundation 32 at various strategic points. Anywhere from ten to sixteen anchors 34 will generally suffice. Each anchor 34, shown in elevational cross-section in FIG. 6, comprises an upper pod 36a and a lower pod 3617 which are applied above and below the aforesaid strategic points of the foundation 32 and are bonded together thereat by means of a solvent bond. The solvent is applied between the pods 36, which are then squeezed together. When the finished hairpiece is to be affixed to the scalp, an adhesive material such as medical adhesive or transparent double-sided tape, for example, is applied to the underside of the anchors 34 and the hairpiece is positioned on the scalp as desired.
Each pod 36 may be one-quarter to three-eighths inches in diameter and about 0.003 inches thick. If the extruded material used for the filaments were 0.005 inches thick, the thickness of a molecular bond point would be about 0.007 inches. The maximum thickness through the anchor 34 after the solvent bond is formed would then be approximately 0.011 inches and would occur at the molecular bond point.
A suitable material for the pods 36 would be, for example, clear vinyl, although other similar material otherwise compatible with this invention would be satisfactory. A suitable solvent for bonding pods 36 made of the aforementioned vinyl would be, for example, vinyl solvent adhesive. If other pod material is used, the solvent would have to be chosen compatible therewith.
The hairpiece is completed by securing hair fibers to the foundation as follows: FIG. 7 shows a hair fiber 38 secured to one of the molecularly bonded intersections in the foundation 32. The molecular bond 40 generates four reference quadrants, e.g. north, south, east, and west. The fiber 38 shown is secured conventionally with a simple loop knot having a loop 42 through which are drawn the ends 44 of the fiber 38. In FIG. 7 the ends 44 and the loop 42 lie in the north quadrant of the bond 40. To complete the hairpiece, a fiber 38 is attached to each molecular bond point 40 in the foundation 32, including those covered by the anchors 34. As will become clear subsequently, however, not all the fiber ends 44 of these secured fibers 38 will lie in the same direction. I
As stated previously, styling begins with the formation of the network 18. It continues with the placement of hair fibers in the foundation 32. By securing fibers 38 in certain areas of the foundation so that they lie in certain directions in accordance with a predetermined pattern, this invention generates the appearance of a simulated natural growth pattern for the hair fibers 38.
A typical hair growth pattern for a person with a full head of hair includes several growth directions. For example, the hair in the back of the head grows downwardly toward the neck, while the hair on the sides of the head grows toward the ears. The hair in the front top of the head often grows forward- Thus, typically, normal hair growth follows essentially four general directions. Use of this fact is made in, the formation of hairpieces according to this inventionin order to simulate a natural growth pattern. 7 i
By way of example, FIG. 8 shows ahairpiece being formed with a part to one side. The loops of the fibers secured to bonds to one side 46 of a dividing line.48 on the foundation 32 lie in the east quadrants of the bonds, while the loops of fibers secured to bonds to the other side 50 of the line 48 he in the west quad rants. The part along line 48 in this hairpiece will be sharp and well de- I fined because the fibers on either side of the line lie in opposite directions. This effect will be more pronounced if the hair fibers are straight rather than curly or wavy. lf a less well defined part is desired, the fibers on the side 46 of the line 48 could be secured to lie in the north quadrants of their respective bond points, and then combed to lie away from the line 48.
FIG. 9 shows a hairpiece being formed with wavy, curly hair fibers. The selection of wavy or curly hair fibers rather than straight fibers is part of the styling process. The loops of one group 52 of fibers secured to bonds in the front of the hairpiece lie in the south quadrants, the loops of a second group 54 of fibers secured to bonds to one side of the hairpiece lie in the east quadrants, the loops of a third group 56 of fibers secured to bonds to the other side of the hairpiece lie in the west quadrants, and the loops of a fourth group 58 of fibers secured to bonds in the rear lie in the north quadrants. After the fibers are secured to lie in various quadrants as indicated, they may be curled and waved, if necessary. They are then combed so that the ends of the fibers lying in the east quadrants can be partially interspersed with the ends of fibers lying in the north quadrants. In this way, there will be no clear demarcation between fibers in the north quadrants and adjacent fibers in the east quadrants, and a wavy hair style is achieved.
The hairpiece 60 shown in FIG. 10 is an example of a full thick wavy hair style formed according to FIG. 9. Additional thickness may be achieved by securing two, instead of only one, fibers to each bond point and making them lie in separate quadrants of the same bond point. Thus, by combining various spacings of filaments 10, various arrangements of the fibers 38 in the foundations 32 and various curling and waving patterns, various hair styles can be achieved by this invention.
The hairpieces produced by the method described hereinabove are extremely lightweight, being on the order of from 3 to 7 grams and no heavier than 11 grams, compared to an average of 60 grams for conventional hairpieces. This is primarily due to the extreme lightness of the foundation, as was previously discussed. Since the hair fibers usually weigh on the order of 2 or 3 grams, the heaviest part of a conventional hairpiece, by far, is the foundation which usually weighs 50 grams or more. The weight of the foundation herein, however, is essentially about the same as the hair fibers attached thereto, i.e. no heavier than 7 grams, making for an altogether more comfortable hairpiece than the heavy conventional'hairpieces.
When the hairpiece is secured to the scalp by satisfactory adhesive; such as double-backed surgical adhesive tape for example, approximately 98% of the area of the scalp subtended by the hairpiece is exposed to the atmosphere. The scalp is covered only at the anchor points. For this reas on, it is easy to wash the scalp and remove the oils'that are "normally exuded there, with the exception of the small amount of oil exuded beneath the anchors. As a result, the hairpiece may be worn for a week and'longer without removall By contrast, conventional hairpieces must be removed and reapplied almost daily, since the scalp cannot be washed while they are being worn. g
Because of the molecula r bonding of the filaments in the foundation, the hairpiece can withstand various abuse accompanying shampooing, combing, drying, brushing, scratching and "massaging. Therefore, the hairpiece, when being worn, may be treated in these respects like an ordinary real head of hair.
There has thus been shown and described a method for making and styling a hairpiece with a nonwoven molecularly bonded foundation. Although specific embodiments of the invention have been described in detail, other variations of the embodiments shown may be made within the spirit, scope and contemplation of the invention.
Accordingly, it is intended that the foregoing disclosure and drawings shall be considered only as illustrations of the principles of this invention and are not to be construed in a limiting sense.
What is claimed is:
l. A method for simultaneously making and styling a hairpiece according to a predetermined hair style, comprising:
a. forming a non-woven essentially rectangularly patemed network by steps comprising:
spacing a plurality of first filaments essentially parallel to one another in a first plane in a rectangular frame;
spacing a plurality of second filaments essentially parallel to one another in a second plane in said frame, said second filaments being essentially perpendicular to and directly above said first filaments, said first and second planes being parallel; and
placing said frame in a molecular bonding machine and molecularly bonding said first and second filaments at their intersections to form bond points thereat, said bonding comprising joining said first and second filaments together at their intersections under a temperature of essentially between 400 and 435 Fahrenheit and a pressure of essentially between 53,000 psi and 63,000 psi for no longer than essentially 2 seconds;
b. shaping said network to conform to a predetermined head shape;
0. cutting said shaped network according to a predetermined pattern to form a foundation;
d. securing anchors to said foundation; and
e. affixing hair fibers to said foundation according to a predetermined style. 2. The method claimed in claim 1 wherein: said machine is an ultrasonic bonding machine; and
said filaments are of extruded monofilament nylon essentially 0.005 inches in diameter. s 3. The method claimed in claim 2 wherein shaping said network comprises:
tautly connecting said network to hinged arms of a shaping frame, said arms being essentially perpen- .-dicular to said shaping frame and movable inwardly above and beneath points near the periphery of 7 said foundation, said pods being of vinyl;
applying a vinyl solvent adhesive between each pair of upper and lower pods; andv squeezing each said pair of pods together to solvent bond therebetween. 5. A hairpiece comprising:
form a a non-woven essentially rectangularly patterned network foundation shaped to conform to a predeter- -mined head shape and size comprising a plurality 'of spaced first filaments essentially parallel to one another, and a plurality of spaced second filaments essentially parallel to one another and essentially perpendicular to and directly above said first filaments, said first and second filaments being molecularly bonded at their intersections;
anchor means for securing said hairpiece to the scalp of the user comprising upper pods and lower pods respectively positioned above and beneath points near the periphery of said foundation and secured to one another by a solvent bond, said pods being of vinyl and said solvent being a vinyl solvent adhesive; and i a plurality of hair fibers secured to said foundation "according 'to a predetermined style.
6, The hairpiece claimed in claim 5 wherein said filaments are of extruded monofilament nylon essentially 0.005 inches in diameter. i l