Title:
Backpack attachment system for hardshell musical instrument case
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A backpack attachment system for a hardshell musical instrument carrying case includes rings that are permanently attached to the exterior of the case, thereby allowing quick access for using a backpack type strap or straps for carrying the case. The strap set itself is optionally removable, but the attachment rings are not, being permanently mounted to the case, using, for example, rivets, screws, snaps or equivalent means.



Inventors:
Flynn, Timothy R. (Elkhorn, WI, US)
Application Number:
09/776070
Publication Date:
08/23/2001
Filing Date:
02/02/2001
Assignee:
FLYNN TIMOTHY R.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
224/645, 224/910, 224/627
International Classes:
G10G7/00; (IPC1-7): A45F3/04
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
CRONIN, STEPHEN K
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BROWN & MICHAELS, PC (ITHACA, NY, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A backpack attachment system for a hardshell musical instrument carrying case, comprising: attaching means affixed to said case for removably attaching a strap set thereto; and a backpack-style strap set for carrying said case, removably attached to said attaching means.

2. The system of claim 1, wherein said attaching means comprises one or more rings and one or more mounting brackets compatible with said one or more rings.

3. The system of claim 1, wherein said means for attaching is selected from the group consisting of D rings, O rings, triangular rings and rectangular rings.

4. The system of claim 3, wherein said rings are selected from the group consisting of metal rings, plastic rings, and equivalents thereof.

5. The system of claim 2, wherein said rings are spring-loaded, such that said rings remain flat against the exterior of said case, when said rings are not in use.

6. The system of claim 1, wherein said strap set comprises one or more straps.

7. The system of claim 6, wherein said strap set comprises one or more snaphooks for attaching said strap set to said attaching means

8. The system of claim 1, comprising means for affixing said attaching means to said case.

9. The system of claim 8, wherein said affixing means comprise fasteners selected from the group consisting of screws, rivets, snaps, glue and cement.

10. The system of claim 9, comprising one or more plates for reinforcing the interior of said case.

11. The system of claim 1, wherein said attaching means are recessed into the exterior of said case.

12. The system of claim 2, wherein said bracket and said ring are constructed as an integral one-piece assembly.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The invention relates generally to musical instrument carrying cases, and in particular, to a hardshell musical instrument carrying case that includes a permanently mounted backpack strap attachment system.

[0003] 2. Description of Related Art

[0004] Amateur and professional musicians regularly transport their musical instruments through a wide variety of conditions and obstacles. Such travel with instruments often includes various modes of transportation and distances. Musical instruments are usually delicate and often valuable, therefore requiring rigid, heavy cases to protect them, while in transport. While such cases protect the instrument, they often impede travel, particularly by foot, through crowds, or for any substantial distance. Such cases are also difficult to maneuver in confined spaces. Heavy, protective cases can cause strain and tire the carrier when clutched in the hand or hanging off a shoulder for long periods of time. This is particularly problematic, since most musicians delicately employ their hands and arms in order to play their instruments. Typically, prior art devices for transporting musical instruments more comfortably tend to compromise the protective traits of rigid cases in order to be lighter and easier to transport.

[0005] Various solutions have been attempted to solve this problem. For example, U.S. Pat. No. 5,918,785 (Irose) discloses a harness and shoulder strap assembly to securely enclose, support, and form a carrying device for musical instrument cases. The case-engaging harness and shoulder straps comprise a plurality of adjustable strap loops connected by various fastenings, adjusters, releasable buckles, joiners, and fixing methods. The harness and shoulder strap assembly can safely support and carry a wide variety of size, shape, and style instruments and instrument cases.

[0006] There are several problems with such prior art systems. For example, the straps are not permanently attached to the musical instrument case, thus, the harness and shoulder strap assembly must be assembled and attached before departing for travel and disassembled upon arrival, each time the system is used to transport an instrument. Further, the harness and shoulder strap assembly can be lost or misplaced, since it is not attached permanently to the musical instrument carrying case.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] Briefly stated, a backpack attachment system for a hardshell musical instrument carrying case includes one or more rings affixed to the carrying case, a strap set comprising one or more straps, and snap fasteners for attaching the straps to the rings, thereby providing quick access for using a backpack type system to carry the case. According to an embodiment of the invention, the strap set assembly is removable, but the attachment rings are permanently mounted to the case, using, for example, rivets, screws, epoxy or similar means.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

[0008] FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of a musical instrument carrying case having rings affixed to the exterior of the case for attaching a strap set thereto, according to an embodiment of the invention.

[0009] FIG. 2 shows a perspective view of a backpack-type strap set and snap hooks for attaching the strap set to rings affixed to a musical instrument carrying case, according to an embodiment of the invention.

[0010] FIG. 3 shows a view of several examples of snap hooks for attaching a backpack type strap set to rings affixed to a musical instrument carrying case, according to an embodiment of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERED EMBODIMENT

[0011] Referring now to FIG. 1, one or more brackets 1 are affixed to a hardshell musical instrument carrying case (e.g., wood, plastic, fiberglass, or metal), using, for example, rivets, screws, snaps, glue, cement, or other relatively permanent fastening means. Brackets 1 are compatible with and hold rings 2, consisting of, for example, D rings, O rings, triangular rings or rectangular rings. Rings 2 are optionally spring loaded, such that the rings remain flat against the exterior of the case, when the rings are not in use. In addition, rings 2 are optionally recessed into the exterior of the case, such that they are flush with the surface of the exterior of the case. Further, one or more plates optionally are used to reinforce the case, such as, for example, by placing the plates on the interior of the case, thereby adding structural strength to the point of attachment of rings 2. Rings 2 may be constructed of any suitable material, such as, for example, metal, plastic, a composite or any other suitable material. Optionally, the bracket 1 and ring 2 is constructed as a one-piece assembly.

[0012] Typically, the carrying case of the present invention includes bumpers, studs, molded protrusions, or similar foot structures for resting the case on a hard flat surface, such as a floor or table, such that the case does not rest on the brackets, rings and shoulder straps of the present invention. The case of the invention also typically includes a suitable handle for carrying the case when the backpack carrying system is not being used, as well as hardware for closing and securing the case.

EXAMPLE

[0013] Backpack Attachment System for Hardshell Case

[0014] Referring now to FIG. 2, a strap set 3 is removably attached to rings 2, thereby providing a user means for carrying the musical instrument case as one would carry a backpack. Removable attachment of the strap set to the rings is accomplished using, for example, one or more snaphooks 4. The snaphooks preferably are of metal or plastic construction and can include a variety of designs. Typically, the snaphooks have a moveable lever type piece, or a sliding piece that allows the snaphook to be fastened to a ring. There is also typically a ring at the top of the snaphook, which allows the strap material to loop through and attach to the snaphook assembly. Snap hooks are optionally stationary or swivel, depending on the preferred design. Typically, the snaphooks are zinc die cast and include a swivel, however, they are optionally made from any suitable materials, including other metals, plastic, composites, etc. FIG. 3 shows several examples of suitable snaphook designs, however, essentially any suitable design is contemplated by the present invention.

[0015] The strap set is also optionally made from a multitude of suitable materials. Typically, polypropylene webbing material is used, which is preferably about 1 inch to about 1½ inches wide. However, other suitable materials, such as leather, plastic, etc., are optionally used. With the addition of a tri-ring, the strap set is optionally adjustable in length. The strap set can also comprise combination of materials, such as foam covered polyester padding, thereby providing extra softness and protection to a user, when carrying the case using the backpack feature.

[0016] Accordingly, it is to be understood that the embodiments of the invention herein described are merely illustrative of the application of the principles of the invention. Reference herein to details of the illustrated embodiments is not intended to limit the scope of the claims, which themselves recite those features regarded as essential to the invention.