Title:
Cuff and collar press having asymmetric pleaters
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An improved cuff and collar press for pressing the pleated portions of the sleeves of a shirt as well as the collar. The cuff and collar press has a cylinder-shaped pressing pad that mates with a similarly curved press head to press the collar and cuffs of a shirt. Asymmetrical pleating protrusions extend from opposite ends of the cylinder-shaped pressing pad. The asymmetrical pleating protrusions have a protruding portion for receiving the pleated portion of a shirt sleeve and a cutaway portion that receives the unpleated portion of the sleeve such that the unpleated portion is not crushed when the pleated portion is pressed thereby improving the pressing operation.



Inventors:
Devrick, Charles E. (Tampa, FL, US)
Wagner, John (Brooksville, FL, US)
Application Number:
10/892893
Publication Date:
02/10/2005
Filing Date:
07/16/2004
Assignee:
DEVRICK CHARLES E.
WAGNER JOHN
Primary Class:
International Classes:
D06F71/22; D06F71/24; (IPC1-7): D06C15/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
IZAGUIRRE, ISMAEL
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Harvey S. Kauget (Tampa, FL, US)
Claims:
1. A pressing device for pressing a shirt, said device comprising: a base for supporting said pressing device; a lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad mounted on said base having opposing ends; asymmetric members extending from each of said opposing ends of said lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad, said asymmetric members having a protruding portion for receiving a pleated portion of a sleeve of the shirt and a cutaway portion for receiving an unpleated portion of the sleeve of the shirt, said asymmetric members are defined by a front edge having an angled edge, a blunt-nose edge, a longitudinal edge and a transverse edge; an upper cylinder-shaped pressing head adapted to mate with said lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad; and a powered cylinder for selectively pressing said upper cylinder-shaped pressing head against said lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad and lifting said cylinder-shaped pressing head off of said lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad.

2. A pressing device for pressing an article of clothing, said device comprising: a lower pressing surface having at least one asymmetric member; and an upper pressing surface adapted to mate with said lower pressing surface.

3. The device of claim 2 wherein said lower pressing surface is cylindrical and said upper pressing surface is cylindrical.

4. The device of claim 2 wherein said asymmetric member is defined by a front edge having an angled edge, a blunt-nose edge, a longitudinal edge and a transverse edge.

5. The device of claim 4, wherein said front edge of said asymmetric member is further defined by a fillet edge positioned between said longitudinal edge and said transverse edge.

6. The device of claim 4, wherein said longitudinal edge extends arcuately from said blunt-nose edge.

7. The device of claim 2 wherein said asymmetric member having a protruding portion for receiving a pleated portion of a sleeve of the article of clothing and a cutaway portion for receiving an unpleated portion of the sleeve of the article of clothing.

8. The device of claim 2 further comprising a powered cylinder for selectively pressing said upper pressing surface against said lower pressing surface and lifting said upper pressing surface off of said lower pressing surface.

9. The device of claim 8 wherein said powered cylinder further comprises a timer activated actuator.

10. The device of claim 2 wherein said asymmetric member extends from an end of said lower pressing surface.

11. The device of claim 2 further comprising a base for supporting said pressing device.

12. The device of claim 2 wherein said lower pressing surface further comprises a base pad conformed to said pressing surface.

13. The device of claim 12, wherein said lower pressing surface further comprises a second pad conformed to said base pad.

14. The device of claim 13, wherein said lower pressing surface further comprises a cover conformed to said second pad.

15. The device of claim 12, wherein said base pad is substantially silicone foam.

16. The device of claim 13, wherein said second pad is substantially flannel.

17. The device of claim 14, wherein said cover is substantially cloth.

18. A method of pressing an article of clothing, said method comprising the steps of: placing a cuff of the article of clothing on an asymmetric member of a pressing assembly, said asymmetric member being defined by a protruding portion and a cut-out portion, said cut-out portion providing relief for gathering of the unpleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing; aligning said pleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing on said protruding portion of said asymmetric member; gathering said unpleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing at said cut-out portion of said asymmetric member; closing an upper member of the pressing assembly against a lower member of the pressing assembly to press the sleeve portion of the article of clothing; and opening said upper member of the pressing assembly away from said lower member of the pressing assembly, whereby the sleeve portion of the article of clothing may be removed from the pressing assembly.

19. The method of claim 18 wherein said lower member of the pressing assembly having a cylindrical pressing surface and said upper member of the pressing assembly having a mating cylindrical pressing surface.

20. The method of claim 19 further comprising the step of: placing a collar of the article of clothing on the pressing assembly; aligning said collar of the article of clothing on said cylindrical pressing surface of said lower member of the pressing assembly; closing said upper member of the pressing assembly against said lower member of the pressing assembly to press the collar of the article of clothing; and opening said upper member of the pressing assembly away from said lower member of the pressing assembly, whereby the collar of the article of clothing may be removed from the pressing assembly.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application is a utility application based upon and claiming priority of provisional application No. 60/492,691 filed Aug. 4, 2003, the disclosure of which is incorporated by reference herein.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to apparatus used to press clothing articles. More particularly, the present invention relates to a tubular cuff and collar press with improved asymmetric protruding pleaters.

DESCRIPTION OF THE BACKGROUND ART

Presently, there exists many varieties of commercially available shirt pressing assemblies. One such system employs a cylindrical or barrel shaped ironing form for ironing damp collars, cuffs, button-holes and pockets. The article or part of the article to be pressed is placed on the lower cylindrical form and then the mating upper cylindrical form is closed against the article to complete the pressing operation.

The prior art barrel type presser does not allow for the efficient and practical pressing of a shirt cuff. The reason for the ineffectual pressing of the shirt cuff is related to the manufacturing of the shirt. Specifically, when the shirt is manufactured, the extra material in the sleeve is gathered at the base of the cuff in the form of a pleat. As a result, the prior art barrel presser will only effectively finish the cuff of the shirt. The portion of the sleeve immediately adjacent the cuff will not be effectively finished. Therefore, the pleats on a shirt sleeve adjacent to a shirt cuff will be either unfinished or they will be wrinkled.

In response to the realized inadequacies of these earlier cylindrical or barrel type pressing systems for pressing articles of clothing, currently there is a need for a pressing system that allows for the cuff as well as the pleated portion of a shirt sleeve to lay substantially flat against the pressing surface on the cuff chest so that the cuff as well as the pleated portion of the sleeve may be pressed. Inasmuch as the art consists of various types of pressing apparatus, it can be appreciated that there is a continuing need for and interest in improvements to pressing systems, and in this respect, the present invention addresses these needs and interests.

Therefore, the principal object of this invention is to provide an improvement which overcomes the aforementioned inadequacies of the prior art devices and provides an improvement which is a significant contribution to the advancement of the art of pressing the cuff and sleeve portions of garments.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a pressing device for pressing a shirt, said device comprising: a base for supporting said pressing device; a lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad mounted on said base having opposing ends; asymmetric members extending from each of said opposing ends of said lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad, said asymmetric members having a protruding portion for receiving a pleated portion of a sleeve of the shirt and a cutaway portion for receiving an unpleated portion of the sleeve of the shirt, said asymmetric members are defined by a front edge having an angled edge, a blunt-nose edge, a longitudinal edge and a transverse edge; an upper cylinder-shaped pressing head adapted to mate with said lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad; and a powered cylinder for selectively pressing said upper cylinder-shaped pressing head against said lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad and lifting said cylinder-shaped pressing head off of said lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad.

Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a pressing device for pressing an article of clothing, said device comprising: a lower pressing surface having at least one asymmetric member; and an upper pressing surface adapted to mate with said lower pressing surface.

Still yet another object of the present invention is to provide a method of pressing an article of clothing, said method comprising the steps of: placing a cuff of the article of clothing on an asymmetric member of a pressing assembly, said asymmetric member being defined by a protruding portion and a cut-out portion, said cut-out portion providing relief for gathering of the unpleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing; aligning said pleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing on said protruding portion of said asymmetric member; gathering said unpleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing at said cut-out portion of said asymmetric member; closing an upper member of the pressing assembly against a lower member of the pressing assembly to press the sleeve portion of the article of clothing; and opening said upper member of the pressing assembly away from said lower member of the pressing assembly, whereby the sleeve portion of the article of clothing may be removed from the pressing assembly.

The foregoing has outlined some of the pertinent objects of the invention. These objects should be construed to be merely illustrative of some of the more prominent features and applications of the intended invention. Many other beneficial results can be attained by applying the disclosed invention in a different manner or modifying the invention within the scope of the disclosure. Accordingly, other objects and a fuller understanding of the invention may be had by referring to the summary of the invention and the detailed description of the preferred embodiment in addition to the scope of the invention defined by the claims taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

For the purpose of summarizing this invention, this invention comprises a method and an apparatus for efficiently pressing the collars, cuffs and sleeve portions of articles of clothing.

A feature of the present invention is to provide a pressing device for pressing an article of clothing such as a shirt. The pressing device comprises a base or platform which contains the electronic and mechanical systems as well as providing support for the pressing areas of the pressing device. The pressing area of the pressing device comprises a lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad which is mounted onto the base. Asymmetric members are positioned on each end of the lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad. The asymmetric members comprise a protruding portion for receiving a pleated portion of a sleeve of the shirt and a cutaway portion for receiving an unpleated portion of the sleeve of the shirt. The asymmetric members are defined by a front edge having an angled edge, a blunt-nose edge, a longitudinal edge and a transverse edge. It is the asymmetric portion which allows the pleated portion of the sleeve of the shirt to be properly pressed by the pressing device. An upper cylinder-shaped pressing head is adapted to mate with the lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad. A powered cylinder is provided for selectively pressing the upper cylinder-shaped pressing head against the lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad and for lifting the cylinder-shaped pressing head off of the lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad. The pressing device of the current invention can press a collar or cuff of the shirt as well as improve the pressing of the pleated portion of the sleeve of the shirt due the use of the asymmetrical members that extend from each end of the lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad.

Another feature of the present invention is to provide a pressing device for pressing an article of clothing such as a shirt. The pressing device comprises a lower pressing surface having at least one asymmetric member extending therefrom that can be positioned at any location such as one end of the lower pressing surface. The pressing device can include an optional base for supporting the lower pressing surface as well as the electrical and mechanical systems of the pressing device. An upper pressing surface is provided that is adapted to mate with the lower pressing surface. The lower pressing surface of the pressing device can be cylindrical or barrel shaped with the mating upper pressing surface being cylindrical or barrel shaped as well. The lower pressing surface can further comprise a base pad that may be substantially a silicone foam that conforms to the lower pressing surface. A second pad may be provided that conforms to the base pad which can be substantially made of flannel. A cover which can be made of cloth can be provided that conforms to the second pad. The asymmetric member can be defined by a front edge that has an angled edge, a blunt-nose edge, a longitudinal edge and a transverse edge and can be further defined by a fillet edge positioned between the longitudinal edge and the transverse edge. In addition, the longitudinal edge can extend arcuately from the blunt-nose edge. The asymmetric member can have a protruding portion for receiving a pleated portion of a sleeve of the article of clothing and a cutaway portion for receiving an unpleated portion of the sleeve of the article of clothing. A powered cylinder can be provided for selectively pressing the upper pressing surface against the lower pressing surface and lifting the upper pressing surface off of the lower pressing surface. The powered cylinder can be activated by any known actuator. The pressing device of the current invention can press a collar or cuff of the shirt as well as improve the pressing of the pleated portion of the sleeve of the shirt due the use of the asymmetrical members that extend from each end of the lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad.

Yet another feature of the present invention is to provide a method of pressing an article of clothing such as a shirt. The method comprises placing a cuff of the article of clothing on an asymmetric member of a pressing assembly. The asymmetric member is defined by a protruding portion and a cut-out portion where the cut-out portion provides the necessary relief for the gathering of the unpleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing. The pressing assembly comprises a base, a lower pressing surface and an upper pressing surface that is adapted to mate with the lower pressing surface. The lower pressing surface of the pressing device can be cylindrical or barrel shaped with the mating upper pressing surface being cylindrical or barrel shaped as well. Next, the pleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing is aligned on the protruding portion of the asymmetric member. The unpleated portion of the sleeve portion of the article of clothing is gathered at the cut-out portion of the asymmetric member. The upper member of the pressing assembly is closed against the lower member of the pressing assembly to press the sleeve portion of the article of clothing. The upper member of the pressing assembly is opened away from the lower member of the pressing assembly, whereby the sleeve portion of the article of clothing may be removed from the pressing assembly. The pressing assembly method of the current invention allows for the pressing of collars and cuffs as well as the pleated portions of the sleeves of articles of clothing due to the use of the asymmetrical members that extend from each end of the lower cylinder-shaped pressing pad.

The foregoing has outlined rather broadly the more pertinent and important features of the present invention in order that the detailed description of the invention that follows may be better understood so that the present contribution to the art can be more fully appreciated. Additional features of the invention will be described hereinafter which form the subject of the claims of the invention. It should be appreciated by those skilled in the art that the conception and the specific embodiment disclosed may be readily utilized as a basis for modifying or designing other structures for carrying out the same purposes of the present invention. It should also be realized by those skilled in the art that such equivalent constructions do not depart from the spirit and scope of the invention as set forth in the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

For a fuller understanding of the nature and objects of the invention, reference should be had to the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a front view of a press constructed in with a preferred embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2a is a side view of a press constructed in with a preferred embodiment of the present invention with the upper member of the pressing assembly in a load position;

FIG. 2b is a side view of a press constructed in with a preferred embodiment of the present invention with the upper member of the pressing assembly in a pressing position; and

FIGS. 3(a-c) are views of a preferred pair of asymmetric protrusions constructed in accordance with the present invention.

Similar reference characters refer to similar parts throughout the several views of the drawings.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

A typical “tube” design collar/cuff press normally presses the collar and both cuffs simultaneously. These prior art designs incorporate a collar press in the center portion of the tube which uses a narrow strip of padding to press only the collar without wrinkling the body of the shirt and two cuff pressing areas (one at each end of the form) to press the cuffs. A preferred embodiment of the present invention modifies this type of cuff and collar press such that the pleats where the end of the sleeve meets the cuff are also pressed. To accomplish this, pleating protrusions are preferably added to each end of the pressing tube. The preferred profile of the pleating protrusions is asymmetrical so that the pleats may be pressed without crushing the rest of the sleeve where it meets the cuff.

Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 2(a-b), a front and side views of an improved cuff and collar press 2 constructed in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the present invention are shown. The press 2 has a base 4 that supports a cylinder-shaped pressing pad 6 and a press head 8. The cylinder shaped pressing pad 6 has protruding pleaters 10 and 12 positioned on opposing ends. A close button(s) 14 and an open button 16 control a pneumatic cylinder 18 that raises and lowers the press head 8 such that an operator can load and unload the press 2 as needed. In addition, the pneumatic cylinder 18 that raises and lowers the press head 8 can be actuated by any other known actuator.

The protruding pleaters 10 and 12 positioned on opposite ends of the cylinder-shaped pressing pad 6 are asymmetrically shaped to allow the pleated portion of a sleeve to be pressed without the unpleated portion of the sleeve being similarly pressed. The preferred configuration of the protruding pleaters 10 and 12 is set forth in FIGS. 3(a-c). More particularly, FIG. 3(a) illustrates a preferred pressing surface 20 for the pressing of a left sleeve shirt cuff and FIG. 3(b) illustrates a preferred pressing surface 20 for the pressing of a right sleeve shirt cuff. The advantage associated with this configuration is that the pleated portion of the sleeve of a shirt is laid over the protruding pleaters 10 and 12 such that the pressing surface 20 can press the pleated portion of the sleeve. In addition, the cut-out portion 26 provides relief for the extra material in the unpleated portion of the sleeve so that the unpleated portion is not pressed upon closure of the press head 8 onto the cylindrical-shaped pressing pad 6. In the preferred embodiment, the protruding portion 34 and cut-out portion 26 are defined by a front edge 30. The front edge 30 has an angled edge 32, a round nose edge 34, a longitudinal edge 36 and a transverse edge 38. The longitudinal edge 36 extends arcuately from the blunt-nose edge 34. The front edge 30 also includes a fillet edge 39 positioned between the longitudinal edge 36 and the transverse edge 38.

In the embodiment as shown in FIG. 3(c), the specifics of the pressing surfaces of one set of pleating protrusions are as follows: an angled edge 32 comprising a length La of approximately 5.4 inches extending forwardly inwardly at an angle Aa of approximately 42 degrees; a round nose edge 34 comprising a length Ln of approximately 1.1 inches; a longitudinal edge 36 comprising a length L1 of approximately 2.7 inches; a transverse edge 38 comprising a length Lt of approximately 6.4 inches; and a fillet edge 39 comprising a radius Rf of approximately 1.9 inches. The dimensions of the pleating protrusions may be readily altered to accommodate smaller or larger garments. Thus, other versions of this press may be built to accommodate specific garments or size ranges without changing the design theory or intent of the original design.

The cuff and collar press 2 is operated by depressing a foot pedal 15 to start the vacuum blower (not shown) to hold the shirt in place. The collar of a shirt is placed along the center portion of the cylinder-shaped pressing pad 6 and the cuffs of the shirt over the protruding asymmetric pleaters 10 and 12. The cuffs of the shirt are placed over the protruding pleaters 10 and 12 such that the pleated portion of the cuff is aligned with the protruding portion 34. The unpleated portion of the sleeve is gathered at the cut-out portion 26 so that the unpleated portion is not pressed when the head 8 is lowered onto the pressing pad 6. The close button(s) 14 is then pressed to actuate a pneumatic cylinder 18 that forces the press head 8 onto the cylinder-shaped pressing pad 6. Preferably, the press head 8 is heated to further facilitate the pressing of the shirt collar and cuffs. Once the collar and cuffs have been sufficiently pressed, a timer will activate the pneumatic cylinder 18 to raise the press head 8 off of the pressed shirt collar and cuff. Or, the operator can press the open button 16 to activate the pneumatic cylinder 18 to raise the press head 8 off of the pressed shirt collar and cuff. The shirt is then removed and replaced with the next shirt to be pressed.

The present disclosure includes that contained in the appended claims, as well as that of the foregoing description. Although this invention has been described in its preferred form with a certain degree of particularity, it is understood that the present disclosure of the preferred form has been made only by way of example and that numerous changes in the details of construction and the combination and arrangement of parts may be resorted to without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.

Now that the invention has been described,