Title:
Computer screen dusting cloth with retractable tether
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A computer screen dusting cloth affixable to a computer monitor case having a reel capable of winding a tether thereon. The tether is attached at a distal end to a monitor wiping cloth. The reel has a wound position with the tether wound upon it and an extended position when it is unwound from the tether. The reel is continuously biased toward the wound position but is locked to the extended position once the user pulls the attached cloth and extends the tether. This allows uninhibited use of the cloth on the monitor. A lock release in the form of a button communicating through the reel housing allows the user to wind up the tether automatically after use by a simple press of the button and storing the cloth attached to the monitor by the tether and real holding tether.



Inventors:
Waite, David (Carlsbad, CA, US)
Application Number:
10/033023
Publication Date:
07/03/2003
Filing Date:
12/27/2001
Assignee:
WAITE DAVID
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
15/209.1, 15/210.1
International Classes:
A47L13/51; A47L25/00; (IPC1-7): A47L25/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
GUIDOTTI, LAURA COLE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DONN K. HARMS (DEL MAR, CA, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A computer screen dusting cloth apparatus comprising: a reel, means of attachment of said reel to the casing of a computer monitor surrounding a monitor display; a tether having a first end attached to said reel and a distal end opposite said first end; said reel having wound position wherein said tether is wound upon said reel, and having an extended position wherein said tether is unwound from said reel; means to continually bias said reel toward said wound position; a cloth; means of attachment of said cloth to said distal end of said tether; and said tether sufficient in length that said cloth may wipe the entire surface of said monitor display when said reel is in said extended position with said tether unwound by pulling on said tether to said extended position.

2. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 1 further comprising: said means of attachment of said cloth to said distal end of said tether providing means of removable attachment of said cloth to said distal end of said tether.

3. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 1 further comprising: a reel housing, said reel housing enclosing said reel therein; said distal end of said tether communicating through an aperture in said casing; a stop, said stop preventing said distal end of said tether from passing through said aperture in said reel housing; and said means of attachment of said reel to the casing of a computer monitor surrounding a monitor display being affixed between said reel housing and said casing.

4. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 2 further comprising: a reel housing, said reel housing enclosing said reel therein; said distal end of said tether communicating through an aperture in said casing; a stop, said stop preventing said distal end of said tether from passing through said aperture in said reel housing; and said means of attachment of said reel to the casing of a computer monitor surrounding a monitor display being affixed between said reel housing and said casing.

5. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 1 further comprising: a reel lock, said reel lock engaging said reel and preventing said reel from moving to said wound position when said tether is unwound to said extended position; and a user actuated means to disengage said reel lock from said reel thereby allowing said reel to return to said wound position with said tether wound upon said reel.

6. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 2 further comprising: a reel lock, said reel lock engaging said reel and preventing said reel from moving to said wound position when said tether is unwound to said extended position; and a user actuated means to disengage said reel lock from said reel thereby allowing said reel to return to said wound position with said tether wound upon said reel.

7. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 3 further comprising: a reel lock, said reel lock engaging said reel and preventing said reel from moving to said wound position when said tether is unwound to said extended position; and a user actuated means to disengage said reel lock from said reel thereby allowing said reel to return to said wound position with said tether wound upon said reel.

8. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 4 further comprising: a reel lock, said reel lock engaging said reel and preventing said reel from moving to said wound position when said tether is unwound to said extended position; and a user actuated means to disengage said reel lock from said reel thereby allowing said reel to return to said wound position with said tether wound upon said reel.

9. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 7 wherein said user actuated means to disengage said reel lock from said reel is a button communicating with said reel lock through said reel housing and depressing said button disengages said reel lock and allows said reel to return to said wound position.

10. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 8 wherein said user actuated means to disengage said reel lock from said reel is a button communicating with said reel lock through said reel housing and depressing said button disengages said reel lock and allows said reel to return to said wound position.

11. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 2 wherein means of removable attachment of said cloth to said distal end of said tether comprises: an aperture formed adjacent to an edge of said cloth said aperture communicating through said cloth; a ring affixed to said distal end of said tether; a strap having two ends and two side surfaces; said strap communicating through said ring and said aperture with said two ends removably affixed to at least one of said two side surfaces using cooperating fasteners.

12. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 4 wherein means of removable attachment of said cloth to said distal end of said tether comprises: an aperture formed adjacent to an edge of said cloth said aperture communicating through said cloth; a ring affixed to said distal end of said tether; a strap having two ends and two side surfaces; said strap communicating through said ring and said aperture with said two ends removably affixed to at least one of said two side surfaces using cooperating fasteners.

13. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 6 wherein means of removable attachment of said cloth to said distal end of said tether comprises: an aperture formed adjacent to an edge of said cloth said aperture communicating through said cloth; a ring affixed to said distal end of said tether; a strap having two ends and two side surfaces; said strap communicating through said ring and said aperture with said two ends removably affixed to at least one of said two side surfaces using cooperating fasteners.

14. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 8 wherein means of removable attachment of said cloth to said distal end of said tether comprises: an aperture formed adjacent to an edge of said cloth said aperture communicating through said cloth; a ring affixed to said distal end of said tether; a strap having two ends and two side surfaces; said strap communicating through said ring and said aperture with said two ends removably affixed to at least one of said two side surfaces using cooperating fasteners.

15. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 10 wherein means of removable attachment of said cloth to said distal end of said tether comprises: an aperture formed adjacent to an edge of said cloth said aperture communicating through said cloth; a ring affixed to said distal end of said tether; a strap having two ends and two side surfaces; said strap communicating through said ring and said aperture with said two ends removably affixed to at least one of said two side surfaces using cooperating fasteners.

16. The computer screen dusting cloth apparatus of claim 12 wherein said ring also functions as said stop.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of Invention

[0002] The present invention relates to cleaning of computer monitor screens of accumulated dust and grime. More particularly, it relates to an improved computer monitor dust cloth that is tethered to prevent accidental misplacement of the cloth and the tether has both a stored position retracted in a reel and a cleaning position wherein is locked in an elongated unreeled position to allow easy cleaning of the monitor without biasing of the cloth during cleaning.

[0003] 2. Prior Art

[0004] With the coming of the desktop computer age cathode ray tube monitors have proliferated on desktops, countertops, and both in office and home environments. Unfortunately such environments are constantly bombarding the computer monitors with dust as well as grime from users fingers. The fact that most cathode ray tubes are inherently charged after time with an electrical charge from the operation of such devices is an aggravating factor in that the positive charge attracts dust to the screen and such accumulations of dust inhibit the viewing of the monitor by the user.

[0005] Prior art in the area of monitor cleaning consists of user owned and determined cloths of paper or woven cloth material and cleaning solutions. However such user determined cloths are frequently too abrasive for the screen a scratch it or fail to attract and absorb a the dust on the screen adequately. Additionally, such user determined cleaning cloths are generally lost after a use requiring the user to venture forth and find another cloth to wipe the monitor which is also probably inadequate for the task at hand.

[0006] U.S. Pat. No. 5,924,153 (Sally) teaches an improved apparatus for cleaning electrostically charged dust particles on a screen using a handle mounted fabric material. However Sally offers no protection against loss of the device once the user is finished since it has not means to attach or restrain the device on the computer monitor itself. Additionally, the handle on Sally provides a potential for disaster in that a scratch on the delicate surface of the monitor screen from the stiff handle is always a possibility.

[0007] As such, their exists a need for an easily and inexpensively manufactured for a computer monitor cleaning cloth that is specifically adapted to that purpose by being made of soft material which will attract dust and remove grime. A further need exists for such a cleaning cloth that will not become lost by the addition of a tether removably attached to the cloth to restrain it on the monitor for which it is to be used. A further need exists for such a device that allows the user to easily clean the monitor while the tether is attached to the cloth while also reeling the tether in once the job is finished to support the cloth out of the way and maintain it in position for the next use. Finally, such a device should be easily attachable to the monitor itself but allow for the replacement of the cloth when it becomes too soiled or worn.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0008] Applicant's device disclosed herein is directed at a tethered computer dust cloth using cloth that is removably attached to a selectively engageable tether. The cloth used for the delicate process of monitor cleaning is fitted to that purpose in that it is soft and woven or otherwise formed of material that attracts the dust and grime from the monitor.

[0009] The tether is wound on a biased reel which automatically winds up after use by the activation of a release button and offers biased resistance to unwinding until the tether is pulled by the user pulling the attached cloth a distance sufficient to allow the uninhibited cleaning of the monitor wherein the reel will lock and cease biasing of the tether. The cloth is removably attached to the tether in the current best mode using hook and loop fabric material or similar means of attaching the cloth to the tether.

[0010] An object of this invention is provide a compute monitor dust cloth that is formed of fabric adapted to the task of removing dust and grime from computer monitor screens.

[0011] Another object of this invention is to provide such a monitor dust cloth along with an attachment of the cloth to the monitor intended for cleaning to allow multiple uses without losing the cloth.

[0012] A further object of this invention is to provide a tether that automatically winds to a retracted position holding the cloth onto the surface of the monitor when not in use.

[0013] An Additional object of the is invention is to provide a tether that automatically locks into an extended position with the tether unwound a sufficient amount to allow cleaning of the monitor and a user activated release to again wind up the tether on the reel automatically when done.

[0014] Further objects of the invention will be brought out in the following part of the specification, wherein detailed description is for the purpose of fully disclosing the invention without placing limitations thereon.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWING FIGURES

[0015] FIG. 1 is view of the computer screen dusting cloth removably attached to a tether device which is attached to the case surface of a computer monitor.

[0016] FIG. 2 is a cut away view of the reel rotationally mounted inside the tether winder case and showing the release button protruding through the case.

[0017] FIG. 3 depicts a means of attachment of the case of the reel device to the conventional plastic monitor case surrounding a computer monitor.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT OF THE INVENTION

[0018] Referring now to the drawing FIGS. 1-3 FIG. 1 is view of disclosed device 10 attached to the monitor case 12 of a conventional monitor having a display screen 14 such as a cathode ray tube or liquid crystal display covered by a case 12.

[0019] The reel housing 16 encases a reel 18 which is spring loaded in a conventional fashion or otherwise biased to exert a winding pressure on the tether 20 to wind it upon the reel 18. Consequently, the tether 20 is constantly being wound or pulled by the reel 18 which as noted is biased to wind the tether 20 to a wound position where the tether 20 is substantially wound up on the reel.

[0020] The distal end of the tether 20 in the current best mode is removably attached to the cloth 22 using a means for removable attachment of the tether 20 to the cloth 22. In the current best mode the means for such attachment of the tether 20 to the cloth 2 features an aperture 24 communicating through the cloth 22. Through the aperture 24 passes a piece of hook and loop fastener fabric 26 which also passes through a ring 28 which is attached to the distal end of the tether 20. Conventional hook and loop fastener fabric 26 is removably engageable a multitude of times without losing its ability to reattach and is soft to prevent the potential of scratching of the display screen 14 during use and is preferred in the current best mode however other removably attachable engagements of the tether 20 to the cloth 22 are also anticipated.

[0021] In use, the device 10 allows the user to pull on the cloth 22 which in turn will pull on the tether 20 and overcome the biasing of the reel 18 to the wound position of the tether 20 on the reel 18 thereby allowing the tether 20 to extend to a cleaning position wherein the reel 18 will lock using a reel lock (not shown) and prevent the winding of the tether 20 to the wound position once the tether 20 reaches the cleaning position. Such reel locks or reel locking mechanisms 29 conventionally work using a ratchet which engages with the reel and prevents it from biasing to the wound position once the tether 20 extends a certain distance. In this case the locking mechanism could be set to lock the reel into the unwound position once the tether 20 is unwound a sufficient distance to allow the cloth 22 to reach any point on the display screen 14 or could just automatically lock the reel once the pulling force by the user on the tether 20 ceases to overcome the continuous biasing of the reel toward the wound position.

[0022] At this point the user is free to use the cloth 22 to wipe the dust and grime from the display screen 14 without the nuisance and inhibiting force of the reel 18 being biased to wind the tether 20 to the wound position since the reel automatically locks in the cleaning position. The cloth 22 is best made from dry cloth made of a soft, lint-free polyester material that picks up dust and neutralizes a static charge on the display screen 14 when used to repel dust therefrom.

[0023] Once the user is finished cleaning the display screen 14 uninhibited by the biasing of the reel 18 he user presses a lock release which in the current best mode is lock release button 30. Once pressed, the lock release button 30 allows the means to bias the reel 18 and attached tether 20 to the wound position to operate thereby winding up the tether 20 on the reel 18 automatically and holding the cloth 22 in place for the next use.

[0024] Of course the cloth 22 is readily available for the next use through the provision of an means of attachment of the reel housing 16 to the monitor case 12. In the current best mode such an means of attachment is best formed of an adhesive pad 32 which is of the peel and stick variety which allows the user to just peel off a protective paper cover (not shown) and attach the device 16 to the monitor case 12 by affixing the adhesive pad 32 thereto to hold the reel housing 16 thereon. Alternatively the means of attachment of the reel housing 16 to the monitor case 12 could be by use of hook and loop fabric 26 with a piece of hook glued or otherwise attached to one of the monitor case 12 or reel housing 16 and a piece of loop fabric attached to the other. This would allow for a removable attachment of the reel housing 16 to the monitor case 12 in case the device 10 is to be moved to another monitor or replaced.

[0025] Finally, the ring 28 provides a stop for the tether 20 when it is being wound on the reel 18 through an aperture (not shown) in the reel housing 16 and upon the reel 18. This stop prevents the tether 20 from being pulled entirely into the reel housing 16 when the reel 18 moves to the wound position and gives the user the ability to change the cloth 22 when needed or when differing conditions require a different type of cloth 22.

[0026] While all of the fundamental characteristics and features of the computer screen dusting cloth with retractable tether have been shown and described, it should be understood that various substitutions, modifications, and variations may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention. Consequently, all such modifications and variations are included within the scope of the invention as defined by the following claims.