Title:
Removable cushion-to-seating attachment with reusable PS adhesive
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
For removable cushion-to-chair fastening, a region on the back side of the cushion is treated or covered with pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA) of sufficient gripping strength to hold the cushion in place without other support. The PSA element is an integral part of the cushion and allows the cushion to be reattached and readjusted multiple times, and can adhere to all manner of surfaces. The PSA material is of a type that can be washed with water and renewed or reactivated, regaining its full adhesive properties upon drying. A foldable rear flap may be provided that can be closed to cover the adhesive region and retained in the closed mode for storing, transporting and using the cushion in a conventional manner, and then opened and retained against the back panel in the open position for exposing the adhesive when the cushion is utilized in the open mode for chair-attachment. Alternatively, the closed mode could be implemented by a removable cover panel.



Inventors:
Swezey, Robert L. (Los Angeles, CA, US)
Swezey, Richard (Los Angeles, CA, US)
Application Number:
09/785139
Publication Date:
08/22/2002
Filing Date:
02/20/2001
Assignee:
SWEZEY ROBERT L.
SWEZEY RICHARD
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47C4/54; A47C16/00; (IPC1-7): A47C31/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
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20080197654FORWARD MOUNTED POWER DRIVE ASSEMBLYAugust, 2008Livesey et al.
20080174164Motor Vehicle Seat with Adjustable Seat DepthJuly, 2008Becker et al.
20050248204Supporting device for the back and head of a human beingNovember, 2005Berg
20010028187Seating furniture with rocking seatOctober, 2001Kielhorn
20080217981LEG REST FOR A STROLLERSeptember, 2008Ton-that
20040212229Attachable sitting device buttsyOctober, 2004Potapova
20060244291Movable tailrack for a motorcycleNovember, 2006Buell et al.
20080265642ROTATABLE CHAIR SUPPORTOctober, 2008Moyers
20080111410Safety Device for Infant Chairs Being Applicable to VehiclesMay, 2008Jane Santamaria
20080203778Seating Implement with TabletAugust, 2008Weber et al.



Primary Examiner:
EDELL, JOSEPH F
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
J. E. McTaggart (Ventura, CA, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. An improved cushion attachment system for attaching a cushion to a chair, comprising: a quantity of reusable pressure-sensitive adhesive applied to a selected rear region of the cushion, made and arranged to enable adjustable and removable attachment of the cushion to the chair.

2. The improved cushion attachment system as defined in claim 1 further comprising; at least one cover flap, hingedly attached to the rear region of the cushion, made and arranged to provide two modes of deployment: an open mode wherein said pressure sensitive adhesive is caused to be exposed and thus available for attachment purposes while said flap is retained against a non-adhesive region of the back of the cushion, and a closed mode wherein said pressure sensitive adhesive is caused to be concealed by said flap and thus protected and unavailable for attachment purposes.

3. The improved cushion attachment system as defined in claim 1 further comprising; at least one cover panel, removably attached to the rear region of the cushion and extending over the selected rear region treated with pressure sensitive adhesive, made and arranged to conceal and protect the pressure sensitive adhesive when not required for attachment purposes.

4. An improved therapeutic back cushion for removable attachment to a chair, comprising: an inflatable back cushion having a degree of inflation that can be readily adjusted by a user for cushioning effect; a quantity of reusable pressure-sensitive adhesive applied to a selected rear region of the cushion, made and arranged to enable adjustable and removable attachment of the cushion to the chair.

5. The improved therapeutic back cushion as defined in claim 4 further comprising; at least one cover flap, hingedly attached to the rear region of said back cushion, made and arranged to provide two modes of deployment: an open mode wherein said pressure sensitive adhesive is caused to be exposed and thus available for attachment purposes while said flap is retained against a non-adhesive rear region of said back cushion, and a closed mode wherein said pressure sensitive adhesive is caused to be concealed by said flap and thus protected and unavailable for attachment purposes.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The present invention relates to the field of cushions and pillows and more particularly it relates to an improvement for removably fastening a cushion or pillow to a chair or seat, particularly as applied to a self-inflatable spinal-support cushion.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] Spinal support in a seated position is important to everyone, particularly persons subject to back and/or neck problems. Since traditional pillows are made with a fixed resilient structure, finding spinal support of desired firmness and thickness often entails locating and trying several different pillows or combinations before a suitable one is found. Bed support structures such as coil spring mattresses and water bed technology have not been found adaptable to spinal-support cushions that are intended for use in a seated position. Proper spinal support, whether seated or reclining, requires the capability of adjusting initially for optimum location of the cushion, then, equally important, maintaining this optimal location.

[0003] As an improvement over ordinary pillows or cushions commonly made resilient by the use of an appropriate stuffing material such as down, cellular foam or the like, the present inventors, in U.S. Pat. No. 5,948,013, disclosed a SELF-INFLATING BACK PILLOW AND COLD THERAPY DEVICE that is easily inflatable by the user without requiring any pump, other external apparatus or human breath, and that can be fastened to the backrest of a variety of chairs and seats. Fastening to the chair or seat was implemented by a pair of straps each removably attached to the pillow at one end, with provision for adjustable mating engagement at the free ends, such as Velcro hook-and-pile or optionally weighted buckles. While this has been a successful product, the fastening straps did not always provide or maintain the desired ideal pillow positioning with some styles of seats or chairs, particularly large sofa style chairs, airline seats, etc. Furthermore the straps pose a dilemma: there are some circumstances where fastening straps are not needed and would be detrimental if permanently attached, so the straps were made removable to make the pillow more versatile and convenient as a simple pillow. However making the straps removable has the disadvantage that they could easily become misplaced. Whether attached or not, the straps tend to impair portability and storage of the pillow or cushion.

DISCUSSION OF KNOWN ART

[0004] U.S. Pat. No. 3,017,642 to Rosenberg et al discloses a SELF-INFLATING CUSHION and U.S. design patent D273,166 to Koves shows an INFLATABLE FOLDABLE CUSHION but neither of these patents show provision for fastening to a chair or seat.

[0005] U.S. Pat. No. 4,670,012 by Johnson discloses a DIAPER OR INCONTINENT PAD HAVING PLEATED ATTACHMENT STRIP having an accordion pleated attachment strap in which the final pleat is terminated by a length of peelable pressure sensitive tape by which the diaper can be removed for inspection and then be reused, if unsoiled.

[0006] U.S. Pat. No. 3,612,607 to Lohr discloses a PLASTIC FOAM SEAT CONSTRUCTION or a vehicle seat wherein a cushion of soft urethane foam is mounted on a slab of hard dense urethane; the cushion and the slab being detachably secured together by a pressure sensitive adhesive so that the cushion can be removed and replaced when damaged.

OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION

[0007] It is a primary object of the present invention to provide an improved and strapless manner of fastening a pillow or cushion, including a self-inflatable therapeutic back pillow such as that disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 5,948,013, to a chair or seat, so as to allow the cushion to be reattached and readjusted multiple times to suit the user's comfort level, and needed positioning.

[0008] It is a further object that the new manner of fastening be applicable to all manner of seating surfaces, shapes and materials such as fabric, wood, metal and plastic.

[0009] It is a further object to implement the chair-attachment capability in a manner that allows the cushion to be used satisfactorily in either an attached mode or in a regular non-attached mode.

[0010] It is a further object to provide a retractable cover to conceal and protect attachment areas of the cushion for purposes of storage, transportation and usage in a regular non-attached mode.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0011] The abovementioned objects have been accomplished in the present invention of a removable cushion-to-chair fastening system wherein a region on the back side of the cushion treated or covered with pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA) of sufficient gripping strength to hold the cushion in place without other support. The PSA element is an integral part of the cushion and allows the cushion to be reattached and readjusted multiple times from a seated position, and can adhere to all manner of surfaces, and can be easily oriented horizontally or vertically. The PSA material is of a type that can be washed with water and renewed or reactivated, regaining its full adhesive properties upon drying. A foldable rear flap may be provided that can be closed and retained in the closed position for storing, transporting and using the cushion in a conventional manner, and then opened and retained against the back panel in the open position for exposing the adhesive when the cushion is utilized in the chair-attached mode. As an alternative to a foldable flap, the closed mode could be implemented by a removable cover panel.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0012] The above and further objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be more fully understood from the following description taken with the accompanying drawings in which:

[0013] FIG. 1A illustrates a preferred embodiment of the present invention: a cushion, viewed from the rear: with a portion of the back panel of the cushion treated with reusable PSA (pressure sensitive adhesive) for removable fastening to a chair or seat.

[0014] FIG. 1B depicts the cushion of FIG. 1A with the rear flap deployed in its closed position, covering the adhesively-treated area.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0015] In FIG. 1A, illustrating a preferred embodiment of the present invention, an oval shaped cushion 10 is seen as viewed from the rear, The region within the oval dashed line is a relatively flat rear panel. A central region 10A of the rear panel is treated with a specially selected type of reusable PSA (pressure sensitive adhesive) by which the cushion 10 can be removably attached to a chair, seat or other object.

[0016] Reusable or non-setting PSA materials suitable for this invention are widely available commercially from suppliers that include major tire and chemical companies, and may be formulated to yield a variety of strengths and other properties from emulsions of components such as acrylic-based polymers. The PSA material should be made strong enough to adhere adequately to a range of different surfaces, e.g. smooth plastic, metal or wood surfaces as well as upholstery fabrics, but avoiding excessive strength that could damage paint or other finishes. The adhesive should have the properties of softening and releasing when moistened with water if necessary to facilitate removal, and retaining or even renewing its pressure-sensitive adhesive qualities after exposure to water, e.g. washing the cushion.

[0017] A protective flap 12 is shown in an open mode. i.e. folded back toward the right hand side as shown in FIG. 1A so as to leave the adhesive region 10A exposed for removable attachment. Flap 12 is attached to the rear panel of cushion 10 by hinging along the hinge edge 12A, e.g. a continuous hinge along the entire edge 12A or, as shown, a pair of hinges 16 one at each end of the hinge edge 12A of flap 12. Hinges 16 can be made from fabric, plastic or other flexible material, and are made to allow flap 12 to freely swing 180 degrees between the open position shown in FIG. 1A and the closed position shown in FIG. 1B. Hinges 16 can be permanently attached to cushion 10 and flap 12, or one of these attachments can be made removable for laundering, e.g by the use of Velcro type pile and loop fabric fastening materials.

[0018] The free end of flap 12 is fitted with Velcro retaining pads affixed on both sides at its free edge so that it can be releasably retained in either the open or the closed position by either of two mating Velcro pads affixed to the rear panel of cushion 10.

[0019] The two Velcro retaining pads visible in FIG. 1A, pad 14A, affixed to the back panel of cushion 10 and pad 14B affixed to the right hand edge of flap 12, are not utilized in this open mode. At the location of retaining pad 14B, on the reverse side of flap 12 and thus not visible in this open mode, another pair of mating Velcro retaining pads of similar shape: pad 14C which is affixed to the reverse side of flap 12 (refer to FIG. 1B) and engaging pad 14D which is affixed to the rear panel of cushion 10 (refer to FIG. 1B).

[0020] FIG. 1B shows the cushion 10 of FIG. 1A in the closed mode with flap 12 folded toward the left hand side where it covers and protects the adhesive region (10A in FIG. 1A) for purposes of transportation, storage or unattached use of the cushion 10. The the free end of cover 12 is releasably retained against the rear side of cushion 10 by a mating pair of Velcro pads 14A and 14B (FIG. 1A) at the location of pad 14C but not visible in this closed mode. The visible pads 14C on flap 12 and 14D on the rear panel of cushion 12 are not utilized in this closed ode.

[0021] For convenience of opening and closing flap 12, a molded plastic handle with a finger recess may be provided at the free end of flap 12.

[0022] As an alternative to a permanently attached hinged flap 12 as shown, a removable cover panel could be utilized, attached in manner that allows complete removal from the cushion 10 when not required, e.g. utilizing Velcro hook-and-pile at two opposite edges or around the perimeter. A removable cover allows a greater area of adhesive on the rear panel than the flap type which requires substantial rear panel space for retaining the flap in the open mode. Optionally adhesive material could be also applied to the side of the flap that is exposed in the open mode.

[0023] As an alternative to the single flap shown, the invention could be practiced with a plurality of flaps: e.g. a pair of symmetrically disposed flaps, each equipped with retaining pads as shown for the single flap.

[0024] As another alternative, the basic principle of the invention could be practiced, at some sacrifice in versatility, without flap 12 or other cover: adhesive material could be applied directly to all or selected rear parts of the cushion, thus creating a cushion with the ability to adhere to various surfaces without other support.

[0025] The invention can be practiced with cushions or pillows of various sizes and shapes other than the shape shown in the illustrative embodiment.

[0026] This invention may be embodied and practiced in other specific forms without departing from the spirit and essential characteristics thereof. The present embodiments therefore are considered in all respects as illustrative and not restrictive. The scope of the invention is indicated by the appended claims rather than by the foregoing description. All variations, substitutions, and changes that come within the meaning and range of equivalency of the claims therefore are intended to be embraced therein.





 
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