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Publication numberUS3927421 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 23, 1975
Filing dateAug 23, 1974
Priority dateAug 23, 1974
Publication numberUS 3927421 A, US 3927421A, US-A-3927421, US3927421 A, US3927421A
InventorsAlan A Simon
Original AssigneeAlan A Simon
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Helmet visor
US 3927421 A
Abstract
A visor for a rigid helmet, and a combination of visor and helmet which helmet includes a smooth crown section having a cavity to receive a head and protect its top, back and sides, a face aperture facing forwardly and opening into the cavity, and a brow surface extending laterally above the face aperture. The visor comprises an attachment member for attachment to said brow surface, a shield member integral with, and projecting forwardly from, the attachment member, the shield member, except where contiguous to the attachment member, being bounded by a peripheral edge, a spoiler slot passing through the shield member extending transversely, and being bounded at the lower surface of the shield member by a forward and a rearward slot edge, said slot edges being spaced apart from each other, and a laterally-extending wind deflector surface adjacent to the rearward slot edge at the upper surface of the shield member, said wind deflector surface extending rearwardly and upwardly, whereby upwardly to deflect air which flows through the slot and impinges upon it so as to cause a turbulent condition at the confluence of airstreams flowing directly upon the upper surface of the shield member and through the slot and upon the wind deflector surface.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Simon HELMET VISOR [76] Inventor: Alan A. Simon, 1333 N. Martel Ave., Los Angeles, Calif. 90046 22 Filed: Aug. 23, 1974 21 Appl. No.: 500,044

Primary ExaminerThomas F. Callaghan Assistant Examiner-Peter Nerbun Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Donald D. Mon

[57] ABSTRACT A visor for a rigid helmet, and a combination of visor [4s] Dec. 23, 197s and helmet which helmet includes a smobth crown sectiomhaving a cavity to receive a head and protect its top, back and sides, a face aperture facing forwardly and opening into the cavity, and a brow surface extending laterally above the face aperture. The

visor comprises an attachment member for attachment to said brow surface, a shield member integral with, and projecting forwardly from, the attachment member, the shield member, except where contiguous to the attachment member, being bounded by a peripheral edge, a spoiler slot passing through the shield member extending transversely, and being bounded at the lower surface of the shield member by a forward and a rearward slot edge, said slot edges being spaced apart from each other, and a laterally-extending wind deflector surface adjacent to the rearward slot edge at the upper surface of the shield member, said wind deflector surface extending rearwardly and upwardly, whereby upwardly to deflect air which flows through the slot and impinges upon it so as to cause a turbulent condition at the confluence of airstreams flowing directly upon the upper surface of the shield member and through the slot and upon the wind deflector surface.

12 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures U.S.'Patent 1366.23, 1975 Sheet1of2 3,927,421

US. Patent Dec. 23, 1975 Sheet 2 of2 3,927,421

1 HELMET VISOR This invention relates to a breakaway helmet visor for rigid helmets, such as are frequently used by motorcycle riders.

l-Iard-surfaced helmets used by motorcycle riders customarily include a smooth crown section having a cavity to receive the head, whereby to protect the top, back and sides of the head. There is a face aperture which faces forwardly and opens into the cavity in order that the rider may see out. A brow surface extends laterally above the face aperture. It is customary to provide snap-type attachment means on the brow surface of the helmet to hold a visor so that upon impact the visor will readily break away from the helmet itself.

Visors are widely used on helmets but conventional visors have many substantial disadvantages. One of them is that because the visor is a forwardly-projecting blade extending into the wind, it exerts a variable upward or downward force on the front of the helmet, depending on its angle of incidence relative to the airstream. Because a motorcycle rider must constantly look around him, this creates a widely varying range of forces which can be bothersome to the motorcycle rider. It constitutes a distraction which the rider can do without.

In addition to the direct reaction of the visor with the air, an additional problem arises as a consequence of the smoothdomed shape of the crown of the helmet. The upper surface of the helmet acts as an air-foil surface relative to the windstream created by the velocity of the motorcycle plus whatever ambient wind conditions exist, and if it flows smoothly in laminar flow over the surface of the helmet, it exerts a lifting force on the helmet. This force tends to lift the helmet upwardly and rearwardly, and must be resisted by the chin strap. This constitutes another variable force for which the rider must compensate.

It is customary for motorcycle riders to duck their heads slightly, or to turn their heads in a stylized manner to compensate for the variable forces created by the visor. It is an object of this invention to provide a breakaway visor which not only eliminates much of the upward and downward force exerted directly on the visor by the on-rushing windstream, but which also acts as a spoiler for the windstream which flows over the top of the helmet. It spoils the laminar flow characteristics,

and destroys a major portion, if not all, of the lift. Ac-

cordingly, with the use of this visor, the variable forces on the helmet and the lifting forces tending to pull the helmet off of the riderss head are substantially eliminated.

A visor according to this invention includes an attachment member for attachment to the brow surface of the helmet and a shield member which is integral with, and projects forwardly from, the attachment member. The shield member, except where it is contiguous to the attachment band, is bounded by a peripheral edge. A spoiler slot passes through the shield member and extends transversely, the slot being bounded by a forward and a rearward slot edge. A laterally-extending wind deflector surface is formed adjacent to the rearward slot edge at the upper surface of the shield member. The wind deflector surface extends rearwardly and upwardly, whereby to deflect upwardly wind which flows through the slot and impinges on it so as to cause a turbulent condition at the confluence of the windstreams which flow directly at the upper surface of the shield sheet and which flow off the wind deflector surface.

According to a preferred but optional feature of the invention, a plurality of said slots is provided in a forward-to-rearward array, together with a plurality of said wind deflector surfaces.

According to another preferred but optional feature of the invention, a reinforcing rib extends between the forward and rearward edges of each of the slots.

The above and other features of this invention will be fully understood from the following detailed description and the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a side elevation of the helmet and visor combination according to the presently preferred embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the visor of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged side elevation of the visor in FIG. 1; and

FIGS. 4 and 5 are cross-sections taken at lines 4-4 and 5-5, respectively, of FIG. 2.

In this specification, the term windstream is used to connote an air flow caused by the velocity of the rider through the.ambient air, together with such components of velocity as may be supplied by ambient wind conditions. It is obvious that a windstream may result from the travel of the motorcycle rider through still air equal in velocity to his velocity through the still air. Also, it may be the vector combination of his speed and the speed of the ambient air both relative to the ground.

FIG. 1 shows a rigid helmet 10 of a type well known in the art. It includes an internal cavity (not shown) to receive and protect the head 11 of a rider. The helmet includes a crown section 12 which has a smooth peripheral top surface 13, a rear surface 14, and side surfaces 15. Only the right-hand side surface is shown, the lefthand surface being its mirror image. The helmet thereby protects the top, sides and rear of the riders head. A face aperture 16 opens forwardly, the forward direction being shown by arrow 17 in FIG. 1, so that the wearer can see out of the helmet. A brow surface 18 extends laterally above the face aperture. The term laterally means transverse, or side-to-side relative to the forward direction 17.

The helmet includes fastener means 19 which may be part of a separable snap fastener. It receives and engages fastener means 20 (the other part of the snap fastener) on visor 25, whereby the visor may be attached to the helmet. It readily can break away on impact by separation of the fastener.

The visor itself includes an attachment member 26 which may conveniently comprise a band having essentially the same curvature as that of the brow surface. It

includes a plurality of slots 27 which receive fastener members 20, whereby the same visor may be attached to different helmets whose fastener means might be differently spaced apart from one another. The visor itself may be an integral cast construction, preferably made of a high-impact plastic, such as'high-impact polystyrene. I

A shield member 30 is integral with, and preferably cast integral with, the attachment member. Except where it is contiguous to the attachment member, the shield member is bounded by peripheral edge 31. This may preferably form a conventional duck-bill" shape, as best shown in FIG. 2.

Three spoiler slots 35, 36, 37 are formed in the shield member in a forward-to-rearward array. The slots respectively include forward edges 38, 39, 40 and rearward edges 41, 42, 43, which are spaced apart from one another. These edges are formed at the bottom surface 44 of the shield member, and the slots extend between the bottom surface 44 and the upper surface 45.

A reinforcing rib 46 extends the full length of the shield member and interconnects the forward and rearward edges of the respective slots. It divides the slots into two laterally spaced-apart segments and provides considerable rigidity to the visor at the slot edges. It prevents them from fluttering excessively. As best shown in FIG. 4, the rib may be substantially thicker than the remainder of the shield member. Laterallyextending wind deflector surfaces 47, 48 and 49 are formed rearwardly of each of slots 35, 36 and 37 at the upper surface of the shield member. Surface 49 is preferably formed at the upper forward edge of the attachment member. Another wind deflector surface 50 is formed rearwardly of leading edge portion 51 of the peripheral edge 36.

The wind deflector surfaces extend upwardly and rearwardly, and preferably curlforwardly a bit near their upper end. Their purpose is to receive wind from slots 35, 36 and 37, and in the case of deflector surface 50 from area 52, to cause these portions of the air flow to form turbulent eddies indicated by arrows 53. These eddying air currents will form a confluence with direct air currents shown by arrows 54 to form a combined turbulent flow schematically illustrated by arrows 55 as it passes over the surface of the helmet.

The effect of this turbulent flow is to spoil the lift of the windstream at the upper surface of the helmet. Similarly, the louvered construction of the slots provides exit means for air trapped under the visor so that it can flow upwardly, thereby reducing the lifting force on the visor itself.

It will be observed in FIG. that the shield member between the slots is louvered, and a directional arrow 56 indicates the limiting ray which can pass through the slots toward the face of the wearer. The overlap of these louvers will be such that in practical conditions no direct ray will reach the eye of the wearer. This is to say that the shield member overhangs a substantial portion of the slot located rearwardly of its forward slot edge. Similarly, the construction will divert water, such as rain and driving spray, away from the face of the user. The drawings are substantially to scale.

The consequences of the foregoing construction are to reduce the torque on the helmet exerted by the visor compared to that exerted by an imperforate visor, and to spoil the laminar air flow over the surface of the helmet. As a consequence, the wearer has much less to compensate for while riding, and he is able to direct his attentions to other situations, thereby improving his competitive edge, and his safety.

This invention is not to be limited by the embodiment shown in the drawings and described in the description, which is given by way of example and not of limitation, but only in accordance with the scope of the appended claims.

I claim:

1. A visor for a rigid helmet, said helmet including a smooth crown section having a cavity to receive a head and protect its top, back and sides, a face aperture facing forwardly and opening into the cavity, and a brow surface extending laterally above the face aperture, said visor comprising: an attachment member for attachment to said brow surface; and a shield member integral with, and projecting forwardly from, the attachment member, the shield member, except where contiguous to the attachment member, being bounded by a peripheral edge, a spoiler slot passing through the shield member extending transversely, and being bounded at the lower surface of the shield member by a forward and a rearward slot edge, said slot edges being spaced apart from each other, and a laterallyextending wind deflector surface adjacent to the rearward slot edge at the upper surface of the shield member, said wind deflector surface extending rearwardly and upwardly and terminating in a curl, whereby upwardly and swirlingly to deflect air which flows through the slot and impinges upon it so as to cause an eddying turbulent condition at the confluence of airstreams flowing directly upon the upper surface of the shield member and through the slot upon the wind deflector surface, the slot being formed in a plurality of laterally disposed portions, and a reinforcement rib between each pair of said portions extending between and interconnecting the forward and rearward edges of the slot.

2. A visor according to claim 1 in which the shield member includes a plurality of said slots disposed in a forward-to-rearward array with one of said wind deflector surfaces adjacent to the rearward edge of each of them, and with a reinforcement rib extending between the forward and rearward edges of all of the slots.

3. A visor according to claim 2 in which one of said wind deflector surfaces is provided adjacent to the forward edge of the forwardmost one of said slots, whereby to deflect wind which impinges on the upper surface of the shield member forwardly of the forwardmost slot.

4. A visor according to claim 3 in which one of said wind deflector surfaces is provided adjacent to the upper forward edge of the attachment member.

5. A visor according to claim 1 in which the shield member overhangs a substantial portion of the slot located rearwardly of its forward slot edge, whereby to limit the angle from which incident light can pass through the slots.

6. A visor according to claim 1 in which attachment means is provided for attaching the attachment member to the helmet.

7. In combination: a helmet including a smooth crown section having a cavity to receive a head and protect its top, back and sides, a face aperture facing forwardly and opening into the cavity, and a brow surface extending laterally above the face aperture; a visor comprising an attachment member, a shield member integral with, and projecting forwardly from, the attachment, the shield member, except where contiguous to the attachment member, being bounded by a peripheral edge, a spoiler slot passing through the shield member extending transversely, and being bounded at the lower surface of the shield member by a forward and a rearward slot edge, said slot edges being spaced apart from each other, and a laterally-extending wind deflector surface adjacent to the rearward slot edge at the upper surface of the shield member, said wind deflector surface extending rearwardly and upwardly, and terminating in a curl whereby upwardly swirlingly to deflect air which flows through the slot and impinges upon it so as to cause an eddying turbulent condition at the confluence of airstreams flowing directly upon the upper surface of the shield member and through the slot upon the wind deflector surface; each slot being formed in a plurality of laterally disposed portions, and a reinforcement rib between each pair of said portions extending between and interconnecting the forward and rearward edges of the respective slots, and separable fastener means attaching the attachment member to the helmet.

8. A combination according to claim 7 in which the shield member includes a plurality of said slots disposed in a forward-to-rearward array with one of said air deflector surfaces adjacent to the rearward edge of each of them and with the reinforcement rib extending between the forward and rearward edges of all of the slots.

9. A combination according to claim 8 in which one of said air deflector surfaces is provided adjacent to the forward edge of the forwardmost one of said slots, whereby to deflect wind which impinges on the upper surface of the shield member forwardly of the forwardmost slot.

10. A combination according to claim 9 in which one of said air deflector surfaces is provided adjacent to the upper forward edge of the attachment member.

11. A combination according to claim- 7 in which the shield member overhangs a substantial portion of the slot rearwardly of its forward slot edge, whereby to limit the angle from which incident light can pass through the slots.

12. A combination according to claim 7 in which attachment means is provided for attaching the attachment member to the helmet.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
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US2874387 *May 20, 1957Feb 24, 1959Constance BannisterVisor cap
US3239842 *Apr 7, 1964Mar 15, 1966Joseph Buegeleisen CompanySafety helmet
US3548410 *May 1, 1969Dec 22, 1970Jerry W ParkerAirfoil face shield and helmet
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4075715 *Nov 15, 1976Feb 28, 1978Sierra Engineering Co.Helmet having anti-lift device
US4564959 *Jun 1, 1984Jan 21, 1986Schuberth-Werk Gmbh & Co. KgCrash helmet
US4945575 *Sep 15, 1988Aug 7, 1990Townsend Charles ESun visor
US5487191 *Aug 18, 1994Jan 30, 1996Ridley; Robert L.Vented visor cap
US5778454 *Aug 26, 1996Jul 14, 1998Wind Wear Designs PartnershipVisor cap
US5943704 *Aug 15, 1997Aug 31, 1999Wind Wear Designs PartnershipVisor cap
US6341380 *Apr 8, 2000Jan 29, 2002Arthur ColemanProtective rain hat
US6367084Mar 5, 1999Apr 9, 2002Simon J. KeastHeadwear
US6735779May 29, 2002May 18, 2004Mitsuko ShremVisored hat construction
US7082618 *Jun 13, 2005Aug 1, 2006Mark MusoCap with hinged vent flaps in visor
US8640264 *Jul 1, 2010Feb 4, 2014Jon RamerCap which utilizes an airfoil effect for inducing cooling
US8782815 *May 10, 2012Jul 22, 2014Thomas H. Greene, JR.Wind-stabilized baseball cap
US9095183Sep 21, 2011Aug 4, 20154Headwear, LlcComfort headgear with moisture-draining and absorption mechanism
US20090288238 *Nov 26, 2009Greene Jr Thomas HWind-stabilized baseball cap
US20120000006 *Jan 5, 2012Jon Vincent RamerUtilising an airfoil effect for inducing cooling in a baseball cap, A.K.A. "Air Cap"
EP0127811A2 *May 15, 1984Dec 12, 1984Schuberth-Werk GmbH & Co. KGSafety helmet
EP0131929A2 *Jul 12, 1984Jan 23, 1985Bayerische Motoren Werke AktiengesellschaftSafety helmet for motor cyclists
EP1719425A2 *Mar 16, 2006Nov 8, 2006New Max S.R.L.Improved front visor for helmets in general
WO1991017732A1 *May 24, 1990Nov 28, 1991The Charles E. And Mary Alice Townsend Family TrustImproved sun visor
WO1999044454A1 *Mar 5, 1999Sep 10, 1999Simon Joseph KeastImprovements in or relating to headwear
Classifications
U.S. Classification2/12
International ClassificationA42B3/22, A42B3/18
Cooperative ClassificationA42B3/227, A42B3/0493
European ClassificationA42B3/22E, A42B3/04C