US3497874A - Safety helmet removable ear protector - Google Patents

Safety helmet removable ear protector Download PDF

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Publication number
US3497874A
US3497874A US3497874DA US3497874A US 3497874 A US3497874 A US 3497874A US 3497874D A US3497874D A US 3497874DA US 3497874 A US3497874 A US 3497874A
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Prior art keywords
protector
plastic
helmet
ear
sheet
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Expired - Lifetime
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Stephen J Molitoris
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American Safety Equipment Corp
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American Safety Equipment Corp
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A42HEADWEAR
    • A42BHATS; HEAD COVERINGS
    • A42B3/00Helmets; Helmet covers; Other protective head coverings
    • A42B3/04Parts, details or accessories of helmets
    • A42B3/16Ear protection devices

Description

March 3, 1970 5. J. MOLITORIS SAFETY HELMET REMOVABLE EAR PROTECTOR Filed July 24, 1968 ATTORNEYS United States Patent O 3,497,874 SAFETY HELMET REMOVABLE EAR PROTECTOR Stephen J. Molitoris, Ann Arbor, Mich., assignor to American Safety Equipment Corporation, Oak Park,

Mich.

Filed July 24, 1968, Ser. No. 747,290 Int. Cl. A42b 3/00 US. Cl. 2-3 3 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An ear protector, for removably fastening to the harness of a safety helmet, formed of a pair of roughly triangular shaped portions integrally connected by a neck covering strip portion, the protector being made of an outer, thin, plastic sheet, a central thick, foam, plastic layer and an inner, soft plastic yarn fabric, all bonded together along their peripheral edges by a heat sealed continuous border, with the border edge of the foam plastic layer tightly compressed between the border edges of the sheet and fabric, to thereby resist twisting and to maintain the protector in a normally flat position.

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION This invention relates to a safety helmet removable ear protector.

The invention herein relates to an improvement in ear protectors of the type disclosed in US. Patent No. 2,991,- 478 to Zbikowski, granted July 11, 1961.

In safety helmets of the type used by motorcyclists and the like, wherein the helmet covers the top of the wearers head but essentially leaves the ear and neck portions of the head exposed, it is desirable in cold weather conditions to provide a suitable protector to cover the ears and side and rear of the wearers head. Such protectors have been made in the form of a pair of roughly triangular shapes interconnected by a narrower neck covering strip, and provided with fastening means, such as snap fasteners, for releasably securing the protector to the harness or straps of the helmet.

Since such protectors are used for only part of the year, namely, during the cold weather conditions, they are normally stored either in a suitable container upon the motorcycle or other vehicle or are separately stored. During storage, these prior protectors have tended to twist and wrinkle, sometimes taking a permanent set in a twisted or wrinkled condition so as to be not usable again, for all practical purposes.

Thus, this invention is concerned with providing an ear protector which will normally tend to remain fiat to resist wrinkling and which resists twisting and yet is inexpensive to make and is comfortable and warm to the wearers head.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION The invention herein contemplates forming an ear protector out of three laryers formed of a flat, thin plastic sheet, a central thick, foam plastic padding material and a soft plastic yarn fabric cloth all bonded together along their peripheral edges to form a heat sealed, narrow, compressed border. Such border, coupled with the plastic sheet and the continuous gripping of the edge of the central layer, causes the protector to tend to remain flat and to flatten out after being curved, and also to resist wrinkling or twisting.

Another object of this invention is to provide a simple, inexpensive method for forming ear protectors, consisting essentially of overlying three layers, namely, a thin 3,497,874 Patented Mar. 3, 1970 plastic sheet, a central thick foam plastic padding, and an inner plastic yarn fabric, and then simultaneously compressing the border edges thereof together to tightly compress the foam plastic between the outer sheet and fabric and heat sealing the three layers together to form a continuous, peripheral border around the protector.

These and other objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent upon reading the following description, of which the attached drawings form a part.

DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a cross-sectional, elevational view of a safety helmet with the ear protector installed.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the ear protector adjacent a fragmentary portion of a safety helmet.

FIG. 3 illustrates, in plan view, the ear protector laid fiat.

FIG. 4 is an enlarged, cross-sectional view taken in the direction of arrows 4-4 of FIG. 3.

FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view, similar to FIG. 4, but showing the ear protector before assembly and illustrating the step of heat bonding the peripheral edges thereof.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION FIG. 1 illustrates a motorcycle-type safety helmet 10 which comprises a hard outer shell 11, which may be formed of a suitable plastic material, such as fiberous glass reinforced resin. The lower edge of the shell is covered with a channelled, rubber-like, edge bead 12. Such helmets normally include an interior energy-absorbing liner. However, such liner is omitted from the illustration since it is not relevant to the invention herein.

The helmet includes a hardness 13 for securing the helmet to the wearers head. Such harness includes a pair of U-shaped straps 14, one located on each side of the helmet (with only one illustrated in FIG. 1) having their upper ends secured by rivets 15 or the like to the helmet shell. A chin strap 16 is secured to one of the U-shaped straps 14 and a similar chin strap would be secured to the opposite U-shaped (not shown) which would include a suitable buckle.

The harness described above securely holds the helmet in place upon the wearers head and yet exposes the ears and the sides and rear neck portion of the wearers head.

Suitable mechanical fasteners are permanetly secured to the U-shaped straps, such as female snap fastener halves 17 for interengaging with corresponding snap fastener halves on a protector when a protector is to be used.

In addition, the helmet is provided with a rear, downwardly extending small strap or tab 18 also having a mechanical fastener such as a snap fastener half 19.

The ear protector 20 is roughly in the form of a pair of spaced apart, generally inverted triangular ear cover portions 21 connected by a narrow, neck covering strip portion 32.

The protector is made of three plys or layers as follows: outer layer 25 is formed of a thin, smooth, plastic sheet of a suitable heat sealable plastic material such as polyvinylchloride sheet.

The central layer is formed of a thick, foam plastic material which is resilient and soft and may be of approxi' mately one-quarter of an inch in thickness as an example. This too is of a heat sealable plastic such as foamed polyvinylchloride or foamed polyurethane or the like.

The inner layer 27 is formed of a woven or knit type plastic yarn fabric which is air pervious and heat sealable, such as polyvinylchloride woven or knit fibers, or fibers made of similar thermoformable plastic fibers.

The three plys or layers are secured together to form a continuous peripheral edging or border 28. As shown in FIG. 5, the steps in asseembling the three plys together comprise first assemblying the plys one above the other. Next, by means of an upper heated die 29 and a lower die 30, the peripheral, overlapping edges of the three layers are compressed together and heat is simultaneously applied, to heat bond or heat seal the three plys into an unitary lamination. The amount of heat and pressure to be applied will vary with the particular plastic selected and is within the knowledge and skill of the art.

Preferably, the lower die 30 has a curved upper surface so that during the compression and heat sealing step, the outer edge of the plastic sheet 25 will curve slightly upwardly to form a slightly curved edge portion 31.

As shown in FIG. 4, above the curved edge portion 31 is the compressed edge 33 of the central layer 26 and above that is the edge 33 of the fabric 27.

Prior to the steps of heat sealing the layers together, male snap fastener halves 34 or other corresponding fasteners are applied to the outer sheet 25 (see FIGS. 4 and In operation, the ear protector may be removably fastened to the helmet by interengaging the snap fasteners 34 and 1719. When in position upon the helmet, the curved edge 31 of the outer plastic sheet 25 tends to streamline the protector and give it a neat, trim edge appearance.

When the protector is removed from the helmet, the continuous edge border 28 and the fiat plastic outer sheet 25 tends to maintain the protector in a flat position as shown in FIG. 3 and to prevent the soft fabric 27 from wrinkling and the entire protector from twisting or taking a permanent twisted or wrinkled position when in storage. This flattening tendency and anti-twist tendency is enhanced by the resiliency of the central layer and the border arrangement.

This invention may be further developed within the scope of the following claims. Accordingly, it is desired that the foregoing description be read as being merely illustrative of an operative embodiment of this invention, and not in a strictly limited sense.

Having fully described an operative this invention, I now claim:

1. A safety helmet ear protector for removably fastening to the harness of a safety helmet and covering the wearers ears and back of neck, comprising:

a pair of generally inverted triangular shaped portions embodiment of of a size to cover the ear portions of a head, and an integral, narrow neck covering strip portion interconnecting the two triangular portions to form a continuous upper edge formed of the bases of the triangular portions and the upper edge of the strip portion;

said protector being formed of an outer layer of a thin, flat, smooth, plastic sheet, a central layer of a thick, resilient, foam, plastic material and an inner layer of a soft, plastic yarn fabric;

the material of the three layers being characterized by K being heat scalable;

the peripheral edges of the layers being laminated together by heat bonding and with the bonded peripheral edge of the central layer being tightly compressed between the inner and outer layers to thereby form a thin, narrow, continuous border around the protector;

the combination of the plastic sheet and border tending to maintain and to retain the protector in a normally fiat position and to resist twisting and wrinkling.

2. A construction as defined in claim 1, and including snap fastener halves secured to the outer plastic sheet only, for mechanically fastening the protector to corresponding snap fastener halves secured to the helmet harness.

3. A construction as defined in claim 1, and the border forming portion of the outer plastic sheet being curved slightly in cross-section, from the plane of the body of the sheet layer towards the plane of the body of the fabric layer, but having its extreme peripheral edge terminating between the planes of said sheet and fabric layers.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 889,640 6/1908 Sherman 2l72 3,192,099 6/1965 Beckman et al. 161161 3,239,842 3/1966, Marchello 2-3 3,314,077 4/ 1967 Marchello 2-3 3,327,316 6/1967 Pukish 23 JAMES R. BOLER, Primary Examiner U.S. Cl. X.R. 2-1

US3497874A 1968-07-24 1968-07-24 Safety helmet removable ear protector Expired - Lifetime US3497874A (en)

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Cited By (18)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3852821A (en) * 1973-06-11 1974-12-10 L Mickel Impact absorbent pad for helmet shell
US4486903A (en) * 1982-02-17 1984-12-11 Joseph Krystal Cap with ear band
US4633530A (en) * 1985-09-04 1987-01-06 Satterfield Roy E Protective device
US4636592A (en) * 1984-12-03 1987-01-13 Helmet Sound, Inc. Speaker mounting for lined helmet
US5189265A (en) * 1991-03-15 1993-02-23 Tilkens Mark P Cap with hearing enhancing structure
US5231704A (en) * 1992-10-13 1993-08-03 Hildenbrand Francis J Attachable ear protection
US5477564A (en) * 1994-08-30 1995-12-26 Tichy; James B. Wind noise reducing, eddy current ventilated earfoil
US6073272A (en) * 1998-01-07 2000-06-13 Red Corp. Helmet with ear protection and a hearing enhancement feature
US6711751B1 (en) * 2001-03-08 2004-03-30 K-2 Corporation Mounting system for helmets
GB2374271B (en) * 2001-03-07 2004-09-01 John Christie Baillie Protection from cold and wet
US20060212998A1 (en) * 2003-04-10 2006-09-28 Gath Ricky J Ear protector for helmet, helmet and method for protecting ears
US20080052804A1 (en) * 2006-08-29 2008-03-06 Lynn Woodward Ear insulating garment to be worn with a hat
US20080276350A1 (en) * 2007-05-09 2008-11-13 Yupoong, Inc. Size Headwear and Manufacturing Method Thereof
US20090007318A1 (en) * 2007-07-03 2009-01-08 Berge Maureen E Helmet Earmuffs/Covers
US20120079646A1 (en) * 2010-10-05 2012-04-05 Guillaume Belanger Hockey helmet with readily removable earpieces
US20130276215A1 (en) * 2012-04-19 2013-10-24 Kenneth Stuart Eley, Sr. Protection apparatus
US8769723B1 (en) 2013-03-15 2014-07-08 Loretta Ilges Hat with ear warmer
US8950012B2 (en) 2013-03-15 2015-02-10 Loretta Ilges Hat and face mask with ear warmer

Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US889640A (en) * 1907-04-18 1908-06-02 Thomas H Sherman Ear-muffler.
US3192099A (en) * 1963-01-03 1965-06-29 Miller Herman Inc Furniture panel
US3239842A (en) * 1964-04-07 1966-03-15 Joseph Buegeleisen Company Safety helmet
US3314077A (en) * 1965-04-09 1967-04-18 American Safety Equip Safety helmet retainer
US3327316A (en) * 1965-04-19 1967-06-27 Vogt Mfg Corp Wrestler's headgear

Patent Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US889640A (en) * 1907-04-18 1908-06-02 Thomas H Sherman Ear-muffler.
US3192099A (en) * 1963-01-03 1965-06-29 Miller Herman Inc Furniture panel
US3239842A (en) * 1964-04-07 1966-03-15 Joseph Buegeleisen Company Safety helmet
US3314077A (en) * 1965-04-09 1967-04-18 American Safety Equip Safety helmet retainer
US3327316A (en) * 1965-04-19 1967-06-27 Vogt Mfg Corp Wrestler's headgear

Cited By (20)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3852821A (en) * 1973-06-11 1974-12-10 L Mickel Impact absorbent pad for helmet shell
US4486903A (en) * 1982-02-17 1984-12-11 Joseph Krystal Cap with ear band
US4636592A (en) * 1984-12-03 1987-01-13 Helmet Sound, Inc. Speaker mounting for lined helmet
US4633530A (en) * 1985-09-04 1987-01-06 Satterfield Roy E Protective device
US5189265A (en) * 1991-03-15 1993-02-23 Tilkens Mark P Cap with hearing enhancing structure
US5231704A (en) * 1992-10-13 1993-08-03 Hildenbrand Francis J Attachable ear protection
US5477564A (en) * 1994-08-30 1995-12-26 Tichy; James B. Wind noise reducing, eddy current ventilated earfoil
US6073272A (en) * 1998-01-07 2000-06-13 Red Corp. Helmet with ear protection and a hearing enhancement feature
GB2374271B (en) * 2001-03-07 2004-09-01 John Christie Baillie Protection from cold and wet
US6711751B1 (en) * 2001-03-08 2004-03-30 K-2 Corporation Mounting system for helmets
US20060212998A1 (en) * 2003-04-10 2006-09-28 Gath Ricky J Ear protector for helmet, helmet and method for protecting ears
US20080052804A1 (en) * 2006-08-29 2008-03-06 Lynn Woodward Ear insulating garment to be worn with a hat
US20080276350A1 (en) * 2007-05-09 2008-11-13 Yupoong, Inc. Size Headwear and Manufacturing Method Thereof
US9241530B2 (en) * 2007-05-09 2016-01-26 Yupoong, Inc. Size headwear and manufacturing method thereof
US7971282B2 (en) * 2007-07-03 2011-07-05 Berge Maureen E Helmet earmuffs/covers
US20090007318A1 (en) * 2007-07-03 2009-01-08 Berge Maureen E Helmet Earmuffs/Covers
US20120079646A1 (en) * 2010-10-05 2012-04-05 Guillaume Belanger Hockey helmet with readily removable earpieces
US20130276215A1 (en) * 2012-04-19 2013-10-24 Kenneth Stuart Eley, Sr. Protection apparatus
US8769723B1 (en) 2013-03-15 2014-07-08 Loretta Ilges Hat with ear warmer
US8950012B2 (en) 2013-03-15 2015-02-10 Loretta Ilges Hat and face mask with ear warmer

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