Title:
Tree stand drink holder
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A collapsible drink holder is provided for temporary attachment to a tree stand which includes a generally horizontal arm section. The collapsible drink holder includes a generally planar rigid ring; a flexible pouch having an open end, a closed end and an outer surface; and a securing arm having a secured end and a channel end. The open end of the pouch is secured to the ring. The secured end of the securing arm is rigidly secured to the ring and the channel end of the securing arm is attached to a channel adapted for mating engagement with the horizontal arm section of the tree stand when the ring is oriented generally horizontally. A securing device is adapted to temporarily secure the channel in mating engagement with the arm section of the tree stand.



Inventors:
Eubanks, Darrell (Knoxville, TN, US)
Application Number:
09/829622
Publication Date:
10/10/2002
Filing Date:
04/10/2001
Assignee:
EUBANKS DARRELL
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47G23/02; (IPC1-7): A47K1/08
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
SZUMNY, JONATHON A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
PITTS & LAKE P C (KNOXVILLE, TN, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A collapsible drink holder for temporary attachment to a tree stand, said tree stand including a generally horizontal arm section, comprising: a generally planar rigid ring, a flexible pouch having an open end, a closed end and an outer surface, said open end of said pouch being secured to said ring, a securing arm having a secured end and a channel end, said secured end of said securing arm being rigidly secured to said ring and said channel end of said securing arm being attached to a channel adapted for mating engagement with said horizontal arm section of said tree stand when said ring is oriented generally horizontally, and a securing device adapted to temporarily secure said channel in mating engagement with said arm section of said tree stand.

2. A collapsible drink holder in accordance with claim 1 wherein said pouch is configured to cover a substantial portion of a drink container to minimize exposure of brightly colored or reflective surfaces of said drink container.

3. A collapsible drink holder in accordance with claim 1 wherein said outer surface of said flexible pouch is colored in a camouflage pattern.

4. A collapsible drink holder in accordance with claim 1 wherein said channel is generally U-shaped in cross-section.

5. A collapsible drink holder in accordance with claim 1 wherein said securement device comprises a flexible strap.

6. A collapsible drink holder in accordance with claim 5 wherein said flexible strap includes hook and loop fasteners.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] Not applicable

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

[0002] Not applicable

TECHNICAL FIELD

[0003] The present invention relates generally to the field of drink holders and more particularly to collapsible drink holders adapted to being removably secured to a tree stand.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0004] In the field of hunting, tree stands are commonly used to allow a hunter to sit in an elevated location, adjacent to and supported by a tree trunk, for the purpose of viewing an extended area with a reduced likelihood of being sensed visually or by scent by prey, such as a deer. Frequently, a hunter will sit for extended periods of time in a tree stand and it is therefore desirable to provide refreshments in the form of drinks in a can or bottle.

[0005] It is generally necessary to carry any equipment in a back pack or in a pack that can be raised with a rope after the hunter is in position in the tree stand. In either case, it is desirable to minimize the size and weight of any equipment that must be carried through rough terrain and then raised to the tree stand. At the same time, any equipment transported in a hunting environment must be sturdy enough to resist breakage through impact, such as by dropping a bag from a tree stand, for example, or being crushed against other hard objects within the pack.

[0006] It is also desirable to provide means for reducing the likelihood that any prey will notice the hunter and the items around the tree stand. Cans and bottles containing drinks frequently include reflective surfaces which may reflect light and therefore attract the attention of prey to the hunter, the tree stand and its contents.

[0007] It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide an easily transportable drink holder for a tree stand.

[0008] It is also an object of the present invention to provide a drink holder for a tree stand which is collapsible for transport in a pack and expandable to substantially surround a can or bottle in use.

[0009] It is an additional object to provide a drink holder that will blend into the environment around a tree stand and avoid drawing the attention of prey.

[0010] Various other objects and advantages will be recognized by those skilled in the art.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0011] In accordance with the present invention a drink holder comprises a substantially rigid frame formed from a metal or thermoplastic, for example. The frame includes a rigid ring, at least one elongated support arm extending generally perpendicularly from the ring and generally coplanar with the ring. The support arm(s) are secured at one end to the ring and at the other end to a channel adapted to matingly engage a horizontal arm of a tree stand. A collapsible, flexible pouch is secured to the ring, extending downwardly to receive a can or bottle containing a drink. A flexible strap encircles the channel and the arm of the tree stand to removably secure the channel in mating engagement with the arm of the tree stand and retain the ring in a generally horizontal plane.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0012] The above-mentioned features of the invention will become more clearly understood from the following detailed description of the invention read together with the claims and drawings in which:

[0013] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a drink holder in accordance with the present invention holding a bottle.

[0014] FIG. 2a is an elevation view of a drink holder in accordance with the present invention in an expanded position.

[0015] FIG. 2b is an elevation view of a drink holder in accordance with the present invention in a collapsed position.

[0016] FIG. 3 is a plan view of a drink holder in accordance with the present invention.

[0017] FIG. 4 is perspective view of a frame of a drink holder in accordance with the present invention.

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

[0018] Referring now to the Figures in which like reference numerals indicate like or corresponding features, there is shown in FIG. 1 a drink holder 11 adapted to hold a bottle 13. The drink holder 11 includes a rigid ring 15 having a diameter adapted to slidingly receive the bottle 13, approximately 3 inches. Two support arms 17a and 17b extend outwardly from the ring 15, in a common plane with the ring 15, for a distance of about 1.5 inches. Each of the support arms 17a and 17b includes a ring end 19a and 19b, respectively, and a channel end 21a and 21b, respectively. In the depicted embodiment, the channel ends 21a and 21b are secured to a channel 23 that is generally U-shaped in cross-section, with the open side of the channel located on the bottom of the channel 23. The channel 23 is sized to matingly engage a tree stand arm 25 that is generally rectangular in shape, as shown specifically in FIG. 4. It will be recognized by those skilled in the art that the open side of the channel may be located on the side or top of the channel 23.

[0019] A flexible strap 27 is provided for securing the channel in mating engagement with the tree stand arm 25, thus preventing unintentional disengagement. The depicted strap 27 includes hook and loop material for easily securing the strap 27 in a tightened position. It will be recognized by those skilled in the art that the strap may be merely tied or secured with snaps or other tightening means. Similarly, a thumbscrew or other clamp means may be used to secure the channel to the tree stand arm. As desired, the strap 27 may be permanently attached to the channel 23 with adhesives or rivets, for example, so that it is readily available when needed rather than lost at the bottom of a pack.

[0020] A flexible, collapsible pouch 29, generally cylindrical in shape, includes a secured end 31 and a closed end 33. The pouch may comprise canvas, for example, a tough cotton fabric that may be sewn around the ring 15 to secure the pouch 23 to the ring 15. In a preferred embodiment, the outer surface 25 of the pouch 29 is colored in a camouflage pattern. The pouch 23 is preferably approximately 5 inches deep to substantially surround a typical 12-ounce can, yet leave a sufficient portion of the can exposed for ease of removal by a hunter. Although any flexible fabric or other pouch configuration may be used, camouflage fabric serves to hide a can or bottle, especially the brightly colored or reflective surfaces commonly used for advertising and marketing purposes.

[0021] In use, a drink holder in accordance with the present invention may be stored in a pack (not shown) in a collapsed position as depicted in FIG. 2b. In this position, the drink holder occupies a minimum amount of space. When a hunter has mounted a tree stand, the drink holder 11 is removed from the pack. The channel 23 is matingly engaged upon the tree stand arm 25 with the ring 15 projecting outwardly from the tree stand and with the ring 15 defining a generally horizontal plane. The flexible strap 27 is wrapped around the channel 23 and the tree stand arm 25 and the hooks and loops are engaged to secure the drink holder 11 in position to receive a can or bottle. As a can or bottle is inserted downwardly through the ring 15, the flexible pouch 29 is expanded from its collapsed position to a generally cylindrical position in which the can or bottle is substantially surrounded by the pouch, as illustrated in FIG. 2a. The camouflage outer surface of the pouch 29 disguises the can or bottle from prey below.

[0022] When the hunter is prepared to leave the stand, the can or bottle is removed from the pouch 29 and the flexible strap is loosened to allow disengagement of the channel from the tree stand arm. The pouch is then collapsed for easy storage in a pack.

[0023] While a preferred embodiment has been shown and described with specific dimensions, it will be understood that it is not intended to limit the disclosure, but rather is intended to cover all modifications and alternate dimensions and apparatus within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined in the appended claims.