Title:
Camera-mounted weather protection umbrella
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
This patent application is for a camera-mounted umbrella designed to protect a photographic or video camera against unfavorable weather conditions. The invention consists of three primary components—a small, foldable umbrella head; a short umbrella shaft; and a camera attachment bracket. The umbrella shaft again consists of two components—a rigid component to which the umbrella head is attached and a flexible component to which the camera attachment bracket is fixed. The camera attachment bracket is a hot shoe bracket, enabling the umbrella to be mounted onto the camera body via the camera's hot shoe. Thus, the user of the invention is able to protect his/her camera and lens against rain and/or excessive sunlight while retaining full operational control over the equipment.



Inventors:
Hilmersen, Thomas (Hitchin, GB)
Application Number:
10/128224
Publication Date:
10/30/2003
Filing Date:
04/24/2002
Assignee:
HILMERSEN THOMAS
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A45B11/00; (IPC1-7): A45B3/00; A45B5/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
WILKENS, JANET MARIE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Thomas Hilmersen (Hitchin, Hertfordshire, GB)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A weather protection umbrella comprising: a shaft; a sliding hub slidably mounted on the shaft; multiple ribs; a spreader pivotally mounted between the sliding hub and each rib; a canopy covering all of the ribs; and a photographic/video camera attachment device mounted to the bottom end of the shaft.

2. The umbrella as claimed in claim 1, wherein the camera attachment device is a hot shoe.

3. The umbrella as claimed in claim 1, wherein the shaft comprises a rigid shaft which is attached to the canopy; and a flexible shaft which is connected to the bottom end of the rigid shaft.

Description:
[0001] This patent application is for an umbrella designed to protect a photographic or video camera against unfavorable weather conditions such as rain and harsh sunlight. The umbrella can be mounted onto the camera body via the camera's hot shoe bracket, usually located on the top of the camera body. The application is made by Thomas Hilmersen, a Norwegian citizen residing in the United Kingdom.

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0002] 1

U.S. Patent Documents
184,771November 1876Folsom135/33.
2,258,196October 1941Siers135/26.
3,693,643September 1972Weber135/26.
3,804,105April 1974Yano135/26.
3,844,302October 1974Klein135/26.

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

[0003] Not applicable.

REFERENCE TO A SEQUENCE LISTING, A TABLE, OR A COMPUTER PROGRAM LISTING COMPACT DISC APPENDIX

[0004] Not applicable.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0005] The invention pertains to an umbrella, and more particularly to a camera-mounted weather protection umbrella.

[0006] A conventional umbrella in accordance with the prior art mainly comprises a shaft, a hub slidably mounted on the shaft, multiple ribs pivotally mounted on the shaft, multiple spreaders pivotally mounted between the hub and each of the ribs and a canopy covering the ribs. However, because a conventional umbrella must be held upright in one's hand to be of protection against weather conditions, the simultaneous use of two hands for the operation of a camera is made impossible. The present invention obviates this problem by making it possible to mount an umbrella directly onto the camera body.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] The invention consists of three primary components—a small, foldable umbrella head; a short umbrella shaft; and a camera attachment bracket. The umbrella shaft again consists of two components—a rigid component to which the umbrella head is attached and a flexible component to which the camera attachment bracket is fixed. The camera attachment bracket is a hot shoe, enabling the umbrella to be mounted onto the camera body via the camera's hot shoe bracket. Thus, the user of the invention is able to protect his/her camera and lens against rain and/or excessive sunlight while retaining full operational control over the equipment.

[0008] The invention is a potentially inexpensive way of protecting expensive camera equipment against unfavorable weather conditions. Additionally, because the umbrella can easily be folded, the invention is highly portable and requires a minimum of space.

[0009] The ability to mount the umbrella directly onto the camera body, via the umbrella's hot shoe, means that the invention will work with most cameras currently in production—as most such cameras are equipped with a hot shoe bracket.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWING

[0010] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a camera-mounted weather protection umbrella in accordance with the present invention.

[0011] FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a camera-mounted weather protection umbrella attached to a camera body via a hot shoe structure.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0012] Referring to FIG. 1, a camera-mounted weather protection umbrella in accordance with the present invention comprises a rigid shaft (2), a flexible shaft (7), a sliding hub (5), a stationary hub (9), a spring-loaded spreader lock button (6), multiple ribs (3), multiple spreaders (4), a canopy (1), and a camera attachment bracket (8). The sliding hub (5) is mounted and slides on the rigid shaft (2). A stationary hub (9) is mounted near the top end of the rigid shaft (2). The multiple ribs (3) are pivotally connected to the stationary hub (9). A spreader (4) corresponds to each rib (3) and is pivotally connected to the sliding hub (5) and the corresponding rib (3). The canopy (1) is attached to and covers all of the ribs (3). A camera attachment bracket, also known as a hot shoe, is mounted to the end of the flexible shaft (7). The rigid shaft (2) is a tubular member. A flexible shaft (7) is mounted on the bottom end of the rigid shaft (2), enabling the user to adjust the position of the canopy (1) relative to the camera body.

[0013] By pushing the sliding hub (5) up the rigid shaft (2), the user causes the spreaders (4) to lift the ribs (3), unfolding the umbrella canopy (1). The sliding hub (5) passes over the spring-loaded spreader lock button (6) at the top position, locking it and the spreaders (4) in place. In order to fold the canopy (1) back towards the shaft, the spring-loaded spreader lock button (6) is depressed and the sliding hub (5) is slid down the rigid shaft (2).

[0014] The flexible shaft (7) can be bent in any direction, enabling the user to position the canopy (1) such that it protects the user's camera and lens without interfering with the operation of the camera or with other equipment attached to the camera body.

[0015] The camera attachment bracket (8) is a hot shoe screwed into the bottom end of the flexible shaft (7). This type of camera attachment bracket is standard for photographic equipment and is frequently seen on flashes, spirit levels, and supplementary range finders.