US2619960A - Aural protective device - Google Patents

Aural protective device Download PDF

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Publication number
US2619960A
US2619960A US199065A US19906550A US2619960A US 2619960 A US2619960 A US 2619960A US 199065 A US199065 A US 199065A US 19906550 A US19906550 A US 19906550A US 2619960 A US2619960 A US 2619960A
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United States
Prior art keywords
ear
disc
cap
extremity
shaft
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Expired - Lifetime
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US199065A
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Lee T Reynolds
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Lee T Reynolds
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61FFILTERS IMPLANTABLE INTO BLOOD VESSELS; PROSTHESES; DEVICES PROVIDING PATENCY TO, OR PREVENTING COLLAPSING OF, TUBULAR STRUCTURES OF THE BODY, e.g. STENTS; ORTHOPAEDIC, NURSING OR CONTRACEPTIVE DEVICES; FOMENTATION; TREATMENT OR PROTECTION OF EYES OR EARS; BANDAGES, DRESSINGS OR ABSORBENT PADS; FIRST-AID KITS
    • A61F11/00Methods or devices for treatment of the ears, e.g. surgical; Protective devices for the ears, carried on the body or in the hand; Non-electric hearing aids
    • A61F11/06Protective devices for the ears
    • A61F11/08Protective devices for the ears internal, e.g. earplugs

Description

| T. REYNOLDS 42,619,960

AURAL PROTECTIVE DEVICE Dec. 2, 1952 Filed Dec. 4, 1950 JNVENTOR.

/ff flac-vacas BY u Afro/.wer

Patented Dec. 2, 1952 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE AURAL PROTECTIVE DEVICE Lee T. Reynolds, Hollywood, Calif. Application December 4, 1950, Serial No. 199,365`

2 Claims.

This invention relates to an ear plug of the type designed for the protection and prevention of injuries to the tympanic membrane or ear drum of the ear, and has for its principal object the provision of a plug of this character which will not interfere with the transmission of sound vibrations to the ear drum at normal uniform levels, but which will act instantly to prevent sudden sounds of increased intensity from instantly reaching the ear drum so as to relieve all sudden impacts on the latter.

A further object of this invention is to provide what might be termed an ear check valve which will act instantly and efficiently to prevent sudden increases or decreases in air pressure from reaching the ear drum.

The invention is particularly useful for protecting the ear drum from the results of heavy gun nre, and is so designed that when the compression Waves from the discharge of a large gun reach the ear, the sound passage to the ear drum will be instantly closed, and when the vacuum or 10W pressure wave which follows a compression wave reaches the ear, the passage will be again closed to prevent sudden diiferentials in air pressure from occurring on the opposite faces of the ear drum which might result in injury or damage thereto.

The improved ear plug will also be found useful in shops, manufacturing plants, mining operations, etc., for protecting the ears from sudden extreme and unexpected sounds and noises. and yet allowing conversation and all other sounds of a uniform, continuous character to reach the ear drum without interference.

Other objects and advantages reside in the detail construction of the invention, which is designed for simplicity, economy, and efficiency. These will become more apparent from the following description.

In the following detailed description of the invention, reference is had to the accompanying drawing which forms a part hereof. Like numerals refer to like parts in all views of the drawing and throughout the description.

In the drawing:

Fig. 1 is a side view of the improved ear plug;

Fig. 2 is a longitudinal section therethrough, taken on the line 2-2 of Fig. 3;

Fig. 3 is an inner end view ear plug;

Fig. 4 is an outer end view thereof; and

Fig. 5 is a cross-section, taken on the line 5-5, Fig. 2.

In Fig. 1 the improved plug is illustrated subof the improved mediate the extremities of,

(Cl. 12S-152) stantially full-size, and in the remaining figures the scale has been increased to substantially four times the natural size. i

The improved ear plug employs a cylindrical housing or barrel l0 closed at its outer extremity by means of an outer cap member Il and at its inner extremity by means of an inner cap member l2. The cap members Il and l2 are shouldered to receive the extremities of the cylindrical barrel l0, and the shouldered portion of the outer cap H is forced into the outer extremity of the barrel with suilicient pressure to frlctlonally retain itself in place therein. The edge: of the inner extremity of the barrel l0 is rolled inwardly into a dovetailed groove l5 in the shoulder of the inner cap member l2, after the internal mechanism is in place, to retain the three members'l, il, and l2 permanently together.

The projecting portion of the inner cap member is conical and is axially tapped to form threads I4 for receiving the threaded extremity of an ear tube I3. The outer cap member Il is provided with a conical, axially positioned spring cavity It, the smaller diameter of which opens through the exterior of the cap member il. The inner cap member l2 is provided with a similar conical spring cavity I'i, which opens to the interior of the ear tube I3. The larger diameters of the conical spring cavities are cut back to form spring clamping channels I 8.

The inner faces of the cap members Il and l2 are spaced apart within the housing I0, and each of these faces carries an annular cup-shaped valve seat member i 9 having central sound ports 20. The seat members t over and are forced onto cir cular bosses formed on the inner faces of the cap members Il and l2 and have their flat faces facing each other in spaced-apart, parallel. relation within the housing I0.

A circular flutter between the flat faces of either seat member to close the central sound passage or port 20 therein. The flutter valve disc 2| is formed or mounted on a valve shaft 22 interand at right angles to, the axis of the latter. The shaft 22 extends axially outward from both faces of the valve disc 2l through both the ports 20 and into the conical spring cavities IB and l'l. Each extremity of the shaft 22 is provided with a spring-retaining ring or ange 23 set back from the adjacent extremity so that the extremities will project beyond the flanges 23 at each end of the shaft.

the smaller diameter of A watch-type hair spring 24 surrounds each extremity of the shaft 2|. Hair springs of this type consist of a lat steel wire wound in a dat spiral so that normally the entire spring lies in a common plane. In this device, however, the circumferential extremity of each spring 2A is clamped in one of the spring channels l between the adjacent seat the cap members 2|). The axial extremity of each spring is then slipped over one Vof the extremities of the shaft 2| so that it will lie against the flange 22 thereon. This distorts the two springs outwardly so that they form conical, spiral helixes, as shown in Fig. 2, which support the entire weight of the iiutter disc 2| and the shaft 2.2.

This manner of mounting the utter disc totally eliminates all friction and the disc hangs suspended in the opposing thrust of the two hair springs 2li.

A tubular rubber sleeve 25 is slipped over the eartube I3. The sleeve is provided with an inwardly extending annular ridge 25 which ts into a circumferential receiving groove formed in the ear tube i3. Two exible annular, dished anges 2 and 28 are formed on, and project about, the inner extremity of the sleeve 25 in spaced relation and serve to engage the walls of the oral cavity to retain the ear plug in place therein.

It will be noted that the ange 2i is of smaller diameter than the flange 28 so as to conform to the decrease in size of the natural ear cavity. The outer extremity of the rubber sleeve '.25 is flared outwardly to form a flexible cup 2d about the inner cap I2 to protect the valve mechanism from ear discharges and the like, and to form an outer seal in the ear canal about the ear tube I3.

It can be seen that normal air vibrations or waves caused from sounds or other means can pass through the cavity I6, the outer port 2G, past the disc 2|, and through the inner port 2&3 and the cavity I1 to the ear tube I3 to vibrate the ear drum.

During all normal vibrations or waves the valve disc will simply flutter or vibrate between the double seat members I8 without closing either port 2U. Should'a sudden, loud noise occur, or should there be a sudden increase in atmospheric air pressure, the velocity of the air through the outer port 2|] will act to force the valve disc instantly against the inner seat member I to seal the port 2li therein and so as to prevent a sudden or abrupt rise in air pressure on the ear drum.

Should a sudden or abrupt decrease in atmospheric pressure occur for any reason, such as in the wake of a pressure wave, the pressure on the inside of the flutter valve 2| will force it outwardly against the outer seat member |9 to close the port 20 therein to prevent a sudden evacuation on the outer face of the ear drum, which might result in damage thereto.

member I9 and one or" It can be seen from the above that the passage to the ear drum is normally open so that vibrations of all normal sounds can pass freely to the ear drum. The valve only functions on sudden and abrupt changes in sound volume or air pressure which act to create a pressure differential on opposite faces of the flutter valve disc 2|.

It is preferred to form the barrel It and the caps and I2 from non-magnetic material, such as aluminum, and to form ythe shaft y22 and the disc 2| from a resin plastic so as to avoid any interference due to adjacent magnetic fields.

While a specific form of the improvement has been described and illustrated herein, it is to be understood that the same may be varied, within the scope of the appended claims, without departing from the spirit of the invention.

Having thus described the invention, what is claimed and desired secured by Letters Patent is:

l. An aural protective device comprising a cylindrical barrel, inner and outer caps closing the opposite ends of said barrel and havingportions extending into the barrel, said caps being each formed with a ,central orice taperedtowards its outer end, a valve disc disposed loosely in the barrel between the inner ends of` said caps having a centrally located shaft projecting from the opposite sides of the disc and into the orifices through the inner ends thereof, spiral springs disposed vabout said shaft and located at opposite sides of said disc within the tapered orices, said springs being initially at and distorted longitudinally of the shaft to a conical formation and having their inner convolutions connected with the ends ofthe shaft and their outer convolutions engaging the inner faces of the caps about the inner ends .of said orifices, contraction of the springs being towards the disc in opposition to each other whereby the springs yieldably support the disc between and in spaced relation to the inner ends of the caps and permit movement of the disc towards either cap for closing the oriice thereof.

22 The structure of claim l, wherein an. annular valve seat member is mounted upony the inner end of each cap for `engagement by the disc when the latter is moved to a closed position, said seat members bearing against the outerfconvolutions of the springs andilrmly holding the springs to the caps.

LEE T. REYNOLDS.

REFERENCES CITED The iollowing'references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 2,465,606 Reynolds Mar. 29, 1949 2,487,038 Baum Novr 8, 1949

US199065A 1950-12-04 1950-12-04 Aural protective device Expired - Lifetime US2619960A (en)

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Cited By (42)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2727511A (en) * 1954-09-16 1955-12-20 Gerald I Lebau Device for treating aural difficulties
US3080011A (en) * 1956-07-16 1963-03-05 John D Henderson Ear canal insert
US3565069A (en) * 1969-03-21 1971-02-23 Robert Nelson Miller Acoustical filter device
DE2236112A1 (en) * 1972-07-20 1974-01-31 Sigma Sales Corp Of California Laermschutzmittel for the human ear
US3844580A (en) * 1971-02-18 1974-10-29 Daimler Benz Ag Protection installation for the passengers of vehicles especially motor vehicles
USRE28560E (en) * 1971-03-10 1975-09-30 Diaphragm ear valve
US4457396A (en) * 1982-09-24 1984-07-03 James David L Sound deflector for headset ear phones
US4540063A (en) * 1983-08-03 1985-09-10 Park Trading Co., Ltd. Sound wave attenuation device
US4867149A (en) * 1985-03-29 1989-09-19 Cabot Corporation Earplugs
EP0440572A1 (en) * 1990-02-01 1991-08-07 Francois Le Her Sound transmission device with selective filtering to be placed in the external ear canal and process of manufacturing thereof
US5249309A (en) * 1992-09-17 1993-10-05 Bilsom Ab Ear defender
EP0786241A1 (en) * 1996-01-23 1997-07-30 Howard S. Leight and Associates, Inc. Trackable earplug
US5727566A (en) * 1996-01-23 1998-03-17 Howard S. Leight And Associates, Inc. Trackable earplug
US5819745A (en) * 1994-08-16 1998-10-13 House Ear Institute Pressure-regulating ear plug
US6068079A (en) * 1997-07-30 2000-05-30 I.S.L. Institut Franco-Allemand De Recherches De Saint-Louis Acoustic valve capable of selective and non-linear filtering of sound
WO2001054638A1 (en) * 2000-01-26 2001-08-02 Rossi Jean Pierre Ear plug with controlled effect
US6425398B1 (en) * 1998-06-11 2002-07-30 Eallan Hirshfeld Earplug
US20030159878A1 (en) * 2000-04-06 2003-08-28 Jorgen Hakansson Earplug
US20070125590A1 (en) * 2005-12-07 2007-06-07 Phonak Ag Hearing protection device with acoustic filter element and method for manufacturing the same
USD666581S1 (en) * 2011-10-25 2012-09-04 Nokia Corporation Headset device
US20130152949A1 (en) * 2011-12-20 2013-06-20 The Johns Hopkins University Blast Attenuating Earplug
US20150107606A1 (en) * 2013-10-18 2015-04-23 Robert E. Marsh Switchable Hearing Protection Ear Plug
USD735180S1 (en) * 2014-04-18 2015-07-28 Surefire, Llc Acoustic coupler
USD745493S1 (en) * 2014-11-19 2015-12-15 Underwater Audio LLC Headphone
US20170128268A1 (en) * 2015-11-07 2017-05-11 Vibes LLC Earplug
USD794611S1 (en) 2016-01-19 2017-08-15 Smartear, Inc. In-ear utility device
USD795224S1 (en) * 2016-03-08 2017-08-22 Smartear, Inc. In-ear utility device
USD798843S1 (en) 2016-01-19 2017-10-03 Smartear, Inc. In-ear utility device
US9794668B2 (en) 2014-10-30 2017-10-17 Smartear, Inc. Smart flexible interactive earplug
USD803192S1 (en) * 2016-05-25 2017-11-21 Cheng-Houng Huang Eartip for earphone
US10045130B2 (en) 2016-05-25 2018-08-07 Smartear, Inc. In-ear utility device having voice recognition
USD834561S1 (en) * 2015-12-30 2018-11-27 Oculus Vr, Llc Earbud
US10194229B2 (en) 2013-06-25 2019-01-29 Google Llc Headphones with adaptable fit
USD844586S1 (en) 2017-08-04 2019-04-02 Google Llc Audio assembly
US10410634B2 (en) 2017-05-18 2019-09-10 Smartear, Inc. Ear-borne audio device conversation recording and compressed data transmission
USD867326S1 (en) 2017-07-21 2019-11-19 Google Llc Wireless earbuds
USD867346S1 (en) * 2018-01-19 2019-11-19 Dynamic Ear Company B.V. Ambient filter
US10582285B2 (en) 2017-09-30 2020-03-03 Smartear, Inc. Comfort tip with pressure relief valves and horn
USD879075S1 (en) 2018-07-11 2020-03-24 Google Llc Earbud stand assembly
USD883491S1 (en) 2017-09-30 2020-05-05 Smartear, Inc. In-ear device
USD890696S1 (en) 2017-07-21 2020-07-21 Google Llc Earbud charging case
USD896781S1 (en) 2017-08-04 2020-09-22 Google Llc Audio assembly

Citations (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2465606A (en) * 1947-10-13 1949-03-29 Lee T Reynolds Earplug
US2487038A (en) * 1944-03-25 1949-11-08 Sonotone Corp Ear insert for earphones

Patent Citations (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2487038A (en) * 1944-03-25 1949-11-08 Sonotone Corp Ear insert for earphones
US2465606A (en) * 1947-10-13 1949-03-29 Lee T Reynolds Earplug

Cited By (49)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2727511A (en) * 1954-09-16 1955-12-20 Gerald I Lebau Device for treating aural difficulties
US3080011A (en) * 1956-07-16 1963-03-05 John D Henderson Ear canal insert
US3565069A (en) * 1969-03-21 1971-02-23 Robert Nelson Miller Acoustical filter device
US3844580A (en) * 1971-02-18 1974-10-29 Daimler Benz Ag Protection installation for the passengers of vehicles especially motor vehicles
USRE28560E (en) * 1971-03-10 1975-09-30 Diaphragm ear valve
DE2236112A1 (en) * 1972-07-20 1974-01-31 Sigma Sales Corp Of California Laermschutzmittel for the human ear
US4457396A (en) * 1982-09-24 1984-07-03 James David L Sound deflector for headset ear phones
US4540063A (en) * 1983-08-03 1985-09-10 Park Trading Co., Ltd. Sound wave attenuation device
US4867149A (en) * 1985-03-29 1989-09-19 Cabot Corporation Earplugs
US5832094A (en) * 1990-02-01 1998-11-03 Le Her; Francois Device for transmission of sound with selective filtering for insertion in the outer auditory canal
EP0440572A1 (en) * 1990-02-01 1991-08-07 Francois Le Her Sound transmission device with selective filtering to be placed in the external ear canal and process of manufacturing thereof
WO1991011160A1 (en) * 1990-02-01 1991-08-08 Le Her Francois Selective filtering sound transmission device for the external auditory canal
US5249309A (en) * 1992-09-17 1993-10-05 Bilsom Ab Ear defender
US5819745A (en) * 1994-08-16 1998-10-13 House Ear Institute Pressure-regulating ear plug
US5727566A (en) * 1996-01-23 1998-03-17 Howard S. Leight And Associates, Inc. Trackable earplug
EP0786241A1 (en) * 1996-01-23 1997-07-30 Howard S. Leight and Associates, Inc. Trackable earplug
US6068079A (en) * 1997-07-30 2000-05-30 I.S.L. Institut Franco-Allemand De Recherches De Saint-Louis Acoustic valve capable of selective and non-linear filtering of sound
US6425398B1 (en) * 1998-06-11 2002-07-30 Eallan Hirshfeld Earplug
WO2001054638A1 (en) * 2000-01-26 2001-08-02 Rossi Jean Pierre Ear plug with controlled effect
US20030159878A1 (en) * 2000-04-06 2003-08-28 Jorgen Hakansson Earplug
FR2808677A1 (en) * 2000-05-10 2001-11-16 Rossi Jean Pierre Ear plug with controlled effect
US20070125590A1 (en) * 2005-12-07 2007-06-07 Phonak Ag Hearing protection device with acoustic filter element and method for manufacturing the same
USD666581S1 (en) * 2011-10-25 2012-09-04 Nokia Corporation Headset device
US9138352B2 (en) * 2011-12-20 2015-09-22 The Johns Hopkins University Blast attenuating earplug
US20130152949A1 (en) * 2011-12-20 2013-06-20 The Johns Hopkins University Blast Attenuating Earplug
US10506321B2 (en) 2013-06-25 2019-12-10 Google Llc Headphones with adaptable fit
US10194229B2 (en) 2013-06-25 2019-01-29 Google Llc Headphones with adaptable fit
US9060897B2 (en) * 2013-10-18 2015-06-23 Robert E. Marsh Switchable hearing protection ear plug
US20150107606A1 (en) * 2013-10-18 2015-04-23 Robert E. Marsh Switchable Hearing Protection Ear Plug
USD735180S1 (en) * 2014-04-18 2015-07-28 Surefire, Llc Acoustic coupler
US9794668B2 (en) 2014-10-30 2017-10-17 Smartear, Inc. Smart flexible interactive earplug
USD745493S1 (en) * 2014-11-19 2015-12-15 Underwater Audio LLC Headphone
US20170128268A1 (en) * 2015-11-07 2017-05-11 Vibes LLC Earplug
USD834561S1 (en) * 2015-12-30 2018-11-27 Oculus Vr, Llc Earbud
USD794611S1 (en) 2016-01-19 2017-08-15 Smartear, Inc. In-ear utility device
USD798843S1 (en) 2016-01-19 2017-10-03 Smartear, Inc. In-ear utility device
USD795224S1 (en) * 2016-03-08 2017-08-22 Smartear, Inc. In-ear utility device
US10045130B2 (en) 2016-05-25 2018-08-07 Smartear, Inc. In-ear utility device having voice recognition
USD803192S1 (en) * 2016-05-25 2017-11-21 Cheng-Houng Huang Eartip for earphone
US10410634B2 (en) 2017-05-18 2019-09-10 Smartear, Inc. Ear-borne audio device conversation recording and compressed data transmission
USD867326S1 (en) 2017-07-21 2019-11-19 Google Llc Wireless earbuds
USD890696S1 (en) 2017-07-21 2020-07-21 Google Llc Earbud charging case
USD844586S1 (en) 2017-08-04 2019-04-02 Google Llc Audio assembly
USD896781S1 (en) 2017-08-04 2020-09-22 Google Llc Audio assembly
USD894152S1 (en) 2017-08-04 2020-08-25 Google Llc Audio assembly
US10582285B2 (en) 2017-09-30 2020-03-03 Smartear, Inc. Comfort tip with pressure relief valves and horn
USD883491S1 (en) 2017-09-30 2020-05-05 Smartear, Inc. In-ear device
USD867346S1 (en) * 2018-01-19 2019-11-19 Dynamic Ear Company B.V. Ambient filter
USD879075S1 (en) 2018-07-11 2020-03-24 Google Llc Earbud stand assembly

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