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Port-O-Tank, Tank Carrier Deluxe, and the Tank Carrier (U.S. patent application Ser. No. 08/674212) are the closest items on the current market.
This invention relates to a personal carrying means for scuba tanks, and will also provide a safe and stable method of vehicular transportation for primarily scuba tanks, and will have applications for acetylene tanks, and other cylindrical tanks.
The common method of carrying a tank is by the valve. Transporting a 35 lb scuba or acetylene tank is awkward and there aren't carrying devices out on the market that take the weight off a persons arm and elbow. The Tank Carrier and Port-O-Tank provide a handle which somewhat reduces the awkwardness but still places the weight on a persons arm, it also does not allow use of your hands to carry other items.
Studies exist showing that carrying a scuba tank can cause Lateral Epicondylitis (Tennis elbow). The investigators report 5 cases of the injury related to carrying compresses air tanks during dive related activities. Divers should be aware of the risk of cumulative injury to the exterior tendon, which may be caused by improper tank handling.
The above mentioned studies were conducted by the following:
DR. LORI L. BARR, an Assistant Professor of Radiology and Pediatrics, Children's Hospital Medical Centre and University Of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, Ohio 45229-2899.
DR. DENIS BRUNT, a member of the Dept. of Physical Therapy, Box J-154, Health Science Center, University of Florida, Gainesville, Fla. 32510-0154.
MR. LARRY R. MARTIN, the Dive Safety Officer, LGL Ecological Research Association, 1410 Cavitt St., Bryan, Tex. 77801.
The Tank Tote is multifunctional in that it provides a personal carrying means as well as safe and stable method of vehicular transportation for scuba, acetylene, oxygen, and other cylindrical tanks.
The Tank Tote provides an easy and safe way to transport and carry a scuba tank from the car, boat, or airport to your diving location.
FIGS. 1 and 2 show a schematic, parts description, and dimensions for the construction of the Tank tote. FIGS. 3 and 4 below show the different shoulder carry methods of the Tank Tote in operation. The shoulder strap in conjunction with the tank stabilizers lock the tank into position stabilizing the tank for ease in transport from your vehicle to your dive destination. The Tank Valve Safety Loop prevents the tank from sliding out if the Tank Tote is lifted at the wrong angle. The padding on the shoulder strap provides comfort during transport. Notice both hand are free when the Tank Tote is being used. FIG. 5 shows the Tank Tote during vehicular transport. Notice the stability provided by the tank stabilizers and the interlocking of the straps to prevent the tank from rolling and damaging the vehicle, tank, or other vehicle contents. FIG. 6 shows the stability provided by the Tank Tote at a 30 degree incline. FIG. 7 shows the top view of the Tank Tote. The shoulder strap is interlocked, preventing the tank from rolling, and the tank is ready for transport.
The Tank Tote is constructed from a total length of 18 feet of 2-inch Nylon webbing that is adjoined at 9 different points labeled S1 through S9 and two sections of 16 inch in length of 1¼ diameter of PVC schedule 40 pipe (see FIG. 1). The Tank Tote is designed to allow people to transport scuba, acetylene, or other cylindrical items on various terrain, and can be carried on the right or left shoulder. The Tank Tote accomplishes this by placing the weight of the tank on the shoulders allowing the user to have two hands free for other tasks (FIGS. 3 and 4). The shoulder strap can be manufactured to be adjustable in length by means of a buckle and eyelets or a touch (Velcro) fastener (the Tank Tote shoulder strap in FIG. 1 is not adjustable). A shoulder pad provides added comfort (FIG. 1). Other variations of the Tank Tote could be constructed with rope, chain, or strap like material and various sizes of PVC, metal, wood, or plastic tubular/pipe-like material for stabilization.
From the figures and description above, numerous advantages of the Tank Tote become evident. The Tank Tote:
The Tank Tote is placed on a flat surface. The scuba tank is laid on its side and placed between the tank stabilizers and adjusted where the bottom of the tank is against the Tank Base Support System. The Tank Valve Safety Loop is then placed over the tank's valve and the shoulder strap is weaved through itself to lock the tank into position. The tank is then ready for transport or safe storage.
Accordingly, the reader will see that the Tank Tote can be used to carry primarily scuba, but also acetylene and other cylindrical tanks easily and conveniently. Tanks can now be safely transported in vehicles such as trucks, cars, and boats without causing damage to vehicle, tank, or vehicle contents during the normal operation of the vehicle. The Tank Tote greatly benefits SCUBA divers. It permits the diver to carry a tank along with other dive gear to the dive site, saving both time and energy, and also prevents injury and strain to the arn, elbow and hand. Although the description above contains many specificities, these should not be construed as the limiting scope of the invention, but as merely providing illustrations of some of the presently preferred embodiments of this invention. For example, this invention could be constructed with rope, chain, or strap like material in place of the Nylon Webbing that we utilized for fabrication. Also, various sizes of PVC, metal, wood, or plastic tubular or pipe-like material could be substituted for the Tank Stabilizers.
Thus the scope of the invention should be determined by the appended claims and their legal equivalents rather than by the examples given.