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Title:
Hood including three-dimensional covering
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A cold weather composite camouflage hood that protects a wearer from the effects of cold weather and resembles the surrounding terrain. The hood includes a hood member that encloses the wearer's head with an opening for the wearer's face, and a face mask. The face mask is manufactured from a composite camouflage material including a sheet bonded to a substrate along attachment lines. The sheet is cut between the attachment lines to create a series of lobes that project away from the substrate to simulate the appearance of natural objects of a terrain.


Inventors:
Blutstein, Morton (Bayside, WI, US)
Blutstein, Mark A. (Mequon, WI, US)
Application Number:
09/735859
Publication Date:
06/13/2002
Filing Date:
12/13/2000
Assignee:
Reliable Knitting Works
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A42B1/04; (IPC1-7): A42B1/04
View Patent Images:
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Attorney, Agent or Firm:
MICHAEL BEST & FRIEDRICH, LLP (100 E WISCONSIN AVENUE, MILWAUKEE, WI, 53202, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A cold weather knit hood which is worn on an individual's head comprising: a hood member adapted to cover the wearer's head, the hood member having an opening for the face of the wearer; a face mask manufactured from camouflage material secured in the opening of the hood member and for covering the face of the wearer, said camouflage material consisting of: a substrate; a sheet overlying the substrate and bonded to the substrate along spaced attachment lines, said sheet being cut on opposite sides of said attachment lines to form a plurality of lobes, each lobe having a base attached to the substrate by one of said attachment lines and a peak projecting from the substrate to simulate the appearance of natural objects of a terrain; and at least one opening in the face mask for the wearer's eyes, nose, and mouth.

2. The knit hood of claim 1 wherein the face mask has a foam backing.

3. The knit hood of claim 1 wherein the face mask has a liner.

4. The knit hood of claim 1 wherein the hood member is covered with said camouflage material.

5. The knit hood of claim 1 wherein the hood member is made of a stretchable knit material.

6. The knit hood of claim 1 wherein the hood member includes an anti-microbial layer.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The present invention relates to cold weather apparel, and more particularly to a camouflage knit hood intended for use by hunters.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Knit hoods which cover the head of a wearer are known and are widely used for protection from the cold. Hunters who must closely approach game animals and birds, often wear camouflaged head and face coverings to avoid detection. Several camouflage head coverings are made of thin material or netting with printed camouflage patterns. The thin material used for many head coverings does not provide the wearer with protection from cold weather. Hunting is a common activity in cold weather climates and adequate protection from the elements is often needed to remain outdoors for extended periods of time.

[0003] Various existing head coverings also use a printed camouflage pattern to help the wearer blend in with the surrounding terrain. Head coverings with a printed material create a rigidly defined outline, or silhouette, and are easier for a game animal to detect.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0004] The present invention comprises a hood member and a face mask. The hood member encloses the wearer's head and has good insulating characteristics to keep the wearer warm in cold weather. Preferably, the hood member is made from a stretchable material and is comfortable to wear for prolonged periods of time. An opening is located in the front portion of the hood member for the wearer's face. A face mask is secured in the opening of the hood member and substantially covers the face of the wearer. The face mask is covered with a camouflage material and has at least one opening for the wearer's eyes, nose and mouth. The camouflage material can also cover other portions of the hood or the entire hood.

[0005] The camouflage material used for the face mask is preferably a three dimensional composite camouflage material including a substrate and a sheet. The substrate is preferably a mesh net and provides a base for the sheet. A camouflage color pattern is printed on the sheet to simulate the surrounding environment in which the hood is used. The sheet is bonded to the substrate along multiple attachment lines and the sheet is cut in a zigzag pattern between the lines to create several lobes. The lobes project from the lines and the substrate to simulate the appearance of natural objects in the terrain. The three dimensional appearance of the camouflage material is created by the lobes which extend away from the wearer.

[0006] In the preferred embodiment, the camouflage material of the face mask is bonded to a foam backing. The foam backing stabilizes and insulates the face mask to provide the wearer with additional protection from cold weather. The inner side of the face mask closest to the wearer's face may include an additional liner of brushed polyester, or other soft material. This inner liner contacts the wearer's face and provides additional insulation and comfort for the wearer.

[0007] The face mask has at least one opening for the wearer's eyes, nose, and mouth. In the preferred embodiment, the eyes, nose, and mouth each have separate openings to provide the most coverage of the wearer's face while providing accessibility for the eyes, nose and mouth. Openings for the nose and mouth facilitate breathing, permit the wearer to use certain game calls, and help prevent a wearer's eye glasses from fogging-up in cold weather.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0008] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the knit hood of the present invention.

[0009] FIG. 2 is a left side elevation of the knit hood.

[0010] FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the knit hood taken along line 3-3 of FIG. 1.

[0011] FIG. 4 is an enlarged cross-sectional view of the face mask portion of the knit hood taken along line 4-4 of FIG.3.

[0012] FIG. 5 is a perspective view of an alternate embodiment of the knit hood of the present invention.

[0013] Before the embodiments of the invention are explained in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of construction and the arrangements of components set forth in the following description or illustrated in the drawings. The invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced or of being carried out in various ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology used herein is for the purpose of description and should not be regarded as limiting.

DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0014] FIG. 1 illustrates a cold weather three-dimensional camouflage knit hood 10 embodying the present invention. The knit hood 10 consists of a hood member 14 and a face mask 26. The hood member 14 is preferably made from a stretchable knit material with good insulating characteristics. The passageway 24 near the bottom of the hood member 14 allows the wearer to easily put on or remove the knit hood 10 over his/her head. The neck portion 20 defines the passageway 24 and covers the wearer's neck. The hood member 14 has an opening 22 that provides an aperture for the wearer's face, and generally runs along the wearer's forehead, around both cheeks, and under the chin.

[0015] The face mask 26 is attached to the hood member 14 at the opening and substantially covers the wearer's face. The preferred embodiment has an eye opening 66, a nose opening 70, a nose piece 74, and a mouth opening 78, but the invention can include any combination of these features. The face mask 26 could have one eye opening 66 for both eyes, or a separate opening for each eye. The nose opening 70, nose piece 74, and mouth opening 78 are not necessary for the invention, but they are shown in the preferred embodiment. Excluding these features does have some camouflage and warmth benefits, but including them provides the wearer with many advantages. The mouth opening 78 allows the wearer to use certain game calls and facilitates breathing, speaking and eating while wearing the knit hood 10. The mouth opening 78, nose opening 70 and nose piece 74 may help prevent a wearer's eye glasses from fogging-up in cold weather because the warm exhaled air may pass through the nose opening 70, instead of through the eye opening 66 near the lenses.

[0016] The face mask 26 includes a foam backing 62, a liner 64, and a three-dimensional composite camouflage material 30. In the preferred embodiment, the camouflage material 30 is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 4,931,320, incorporated herein by reference, and commonly known as Intrigue®, a trademark of the Milliken Corporation, Spartanburg, S.C. The camouflage material 30 consists of a continuous sheet 38 bonded to a substrate 34 along spaced attachment lines 42.

[0017] In the preferred embodiment, the substrate 34 is a mesh, net, or other light-weight fabric, and provides stability for the camouflage material 30. The bond between the sheet 38 and the substrate 34 may be stitching, an adhesive, or any other bonding agent. The sheet 38 preferably has a camouflage pattern that corresponds with the environment where the hood 16 is worn. In the preferred embodiment the camouflage pattern on the sheet 38 uses colors that match a forest or wooded terrain, although a pattern resembling other terrains, such as arctic or desert, are possible.

[0018] The sheet 38 is preferably cut between the attachment lines 42 in an irregular zigzag pattern. The cuts create lobes 50 with a base 54 adjacent to the attachment lines 42 and a peak 58 at the end opposite the base 54. The lobes 50 project outward from the face mask 26 and simulate the appearance of natural objects of a terrain, such as leaves or foliage. The jagged zigzag cut of the sheet 38 forms the pointed shape of the lobes 50 that alter the wearer's profile. The projecting lobes 50 allow the wearer to blend in with the environment and typically make it more difficult for game animals to detect the wearer of the knit hood 10 than a person with a solid outline.

[0019] FIGS. 3 and 4 illustrate the multiple layers that may make up the face mask 26. The camouflage material 30 is preferably bonded to a layer of foam backing 62 that provides additional protection from cold weather. Since the substrate 34 of the camouflage material 30 is usually a mesh material, the foam backing 62 blocks wind and insulates the wearer's face. In the preferred embodiment, a liner 64 covers the inside of the foam backing 62 that contacts the wearer's face. The liner 64 makes the face mask 26 more comfortable and allows the knit hood 10 to be worn for a longer period of time without irritation. The liner 64 is preferably made from felt, fleece, brushed polyester fabric, or any other soft material with insulating properties.

[0020] In the preferred embodiment, the knit hood member 14 includes an anti-microbial layer 18 that reduces the scent of the wearer. The anti-microbial layer can be made of Amicor® from Acordis UK Ltd, in Bradford, England. The anti-microbial layer helps prevent the spreading of bacteria and formation of odors. Animals can often smell the scent of a human long before they can see the human. Even if a hunter is completely visually camouflaged from an animal, the hunter's scent can often alert the animal of the hunter's presence. Therefore, the present invention preferably includes the anti-microbial layer to substantially limit the wearer's scent so that the wearer can more closely approach game animals.

[0021] An alternate embodiment of the present invention is illustrated in FIG. 5 in which the camouflage material 30 covers the entire knit hood 10. This embodiment has many of the same features as the previously described preferred embodiment, however, camouflage material 30 is bonded to the hood member 14 as well as the face mask 26. Additional camouflage benefits are obtained with the extra camouflage material 30 covering the entire knit hood 10, because there are more lobes to obscure the wearer's outline or profile.