Title:
Non-twisting and non-flipping necklace
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Twisting and flipping of a necklace along its length may be prevented by restricting the articulation of the links. By providing one section with links that permit articulation only in a vertical direction and another section with links that permit articulation only in a horizontal direction, flipping and twisting can be prevented.



Inventors:
Fufuangvanich, Thanakritt (Bangkok, TH)
Application Number:
10/808816
Publication Date:
09/29/2005
Filing Date:
03/25/2004
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
63/9, 63/28
International Classes:
A44C5/00; A44C5/10; A44C15/00; A44C17/02; (IPC1-7): A44C5/00; A44C17/02
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
REESE, DAVID C
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
JOEL MILLER, ESQ. (WEST ORANGE, NJ, US)
Claims:
1. A necklace, comprising: a first plurality of links, each link of the first plurality having first and second hinge elements that mate with other links, the first and second hinge elements enabling articulation in a first plane; and a second plurality of links, each link of the second plurality having first and second hinge elements that mate with other links, the first and second hinge elements enabling articulation in a second plane, where the second plane is at an angle with respect to the first plane.

2. A necklace as set forth in claim 1, where the first and second hinge elements of the first plurality of links restrict articulation to the first plane; and the first and second hinge elements of the second plurality of links restrict articulation to the second plane.

3. A necklace as set forth in claim 1, where the first plane is vertical with respect to the first plurality of links; and the second plane is horizontal with respect to the second plurality of links.

4. A necklace as set forth in claim 1, further comprising means for connecting the first plurality of links to the second plurality of links.

5. A necklace as set forth in claim 4, where the means for connecting the first plurality of links to the second plurality of links comprises an interconnecting link comprising: a first hinge element enables articulation in a first plane; and a second hinge element enables articulation in a second plane, where the second plane is at an angle with respect to the first plane.

6. A necklace as set forth in claim 5, where the first hinge element of the interconnecting link restricts articulation to the first plane; and the second hinge element of the interconnecting link restricts articulation to the second plane.

7. A necklace as set forth in claim 5, where the first plane is vertical with respect to the interconnecting link; and the second plane is horizontal with respect to the interconnecting link.

8. A link for a necklace, comprising first and second hinge elements that mate with other links, where the first and second hinge elements enable articulation of adjacent links in one plane with respect to the link.

9. A link for a necklace as set forth in claim 8, where the first and second hinge elements restrict articulation to one plane with respect to the link.

10. A link for a necklace as set forth in claim 8, where the plane is vertical with respect to the link.

11. A link for a necklace as set forth in claim 8, where the plane is horizontal with respect to the link.

12. An interconnecting link for connecting a first plurality of links to a second plurality of links in a necklace, comprising: a first hinge element enabling articulation in a first plane; and a second hinge element enabling articulation in a second plane, where the second plane is at an angle with respect to the first plane.

13. An interconnecting link as set forth in claim 12, where the first hinge element restricts articulation to the first plane; and the second hinge element restricts articulation to the second plane.

14. An interconnecting link as set forth in claim 12, where the first plane is vertical with respect to the interconnecting link; and the second plane is horizontal with respect to the interconnecting link.

15. A necklace, comprising: a first plurality of links, each link of the first plurality having first and second hinge elements that mate with other links and restrict articulation between the links to a plane vertical with respect to the links; a second plurality of links, each link of the second plurality having first and second hinge elements that mate with other links and restrict articulation between the links to a plane horizontal with respect to the links; and interconnecting links for connecting the first plurality of links to the second plurality of links, the interconnecting links comprising a first hinge element restricting articulation to the vertical plane; and a second hinge element restricting articulation to the horizontal plane.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to necklaces, including those carrying decorative gemstones. In some arrangements, the necklace is a series of links having settings for the gemstones. Along the length of the chain, as it traverses around the wearer's neck, the links need to be oriented such that the gemstones face outwardly, i.e., away from the wearer. Should a portion of the necklace flip or twist, the gemstones in that portion will then be facing either towards the wearer's skin or perhaps at an angle (e.g., 90°).

Conventionally, the design of the links do little to prevent the necklace from flipping or twisting. However, by providing a combination of links, where some of the links enable articulation in one direction (or, in one plane) with respect to the length of the chain while others enable articulation in another direction at some angle with respect to articulation of the prior links (or, another plane), flipping and twisting can be prevented. In one implementation, the articulation of one set of links is restricted to the vertical plane, i.e., up and down with respect to the links, and the articulation of another set of links is restricted to the horizontal plane, i.e., side to side with respect to the links.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a drawing of a necklace;

FIGS. 2 and 3 are drawings of necklace links enabling vertical articulation;

FIGS. 4-6 are drawings of segments of three links enabling vertical articulation;

FIGS. 7 and 8 are drawings of necklace links enabling horizontal articulation;

FIGS. 9-11 are drawings of segments of three links enabling horizontal articulation;

FIGS. 12 and 13 are drawings of interconnecting links enabling both horizontal and vertical articulation;

FIGS. 14-19 are drawings of segments of three links incorporating an interconnecting link joining links enabling either horizontal or vertical articulation; and

FIG. 20 is a drawing of a necklace indicating the deployment of the various types of links.

DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 shows a necklace 10 comprising a combination of links that resists flipping and twisting. A clasp 12 completes the necklace 10.

One type of link 20, illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3, enables articulation vertically or up-and-down, i.e., in the vertical plane of the link 20, with respect to its length (designated by the arrow “L”). The dashed line labeled “vertical” lies in the vertical plane with respect to the length of the link. Each such vertically-articulating link 20 has a first hinge element 22 and a second hinge element 24 that mates with the appropriate hinge elements 24 and 22, respectively, of other similar links 20 to enable such vertical or up-and-down articulation, as illustrated in FIG. 4 (links separated), FIG. 5 (links joined), and FIG. 6 (links with articulation). By virtue of the action of the hinge elements 22 and 24, the vertically-articulating link 20 restricts articulation to the vertical plane.

Another type of link 30, illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8, enables articulation horizontally or side-to-side, i.e., in the horizontal plane of the link 30, with respect to its length (designated by the arrow “L”). The dashed line labeled “horizontal” lies in the horizontal plane with respect to the length of the link. Each such horizontally-articulating link 30 has a first hinge element 32 and a second hinge element 34 that mates with the appropriate hinge elements 34 and 32, respectively, of other similar links 30 to enable such horizontal or side-to-side articulation, as illustrated in FIG. 9 (links separated), FIG. 10 (links joined), and FIG. 11 (links with articulation). By virtue of the action of the hinge elements 32 and 34, the horizontally-articulating link 30 restricts articulation to the horizontal plane.

Additionally, the necklace 10 may also contain interconnecting links 40 and 50, shown in FIGS. 12 and 13, respectively. The first such interconnecting link 40 (FIG. 12) has a first hinge element 42 that enables horizontal or side-to-side articulation and a second hinge element 44 that enables vertical or up-and-down articulation. The second such interconnecting link 50 (FIG. 13) has a first hinge element 52 that enables vertical or up-and-down articulation and a second hinge element 54 that enables horizontal or side-to-side articulation.

The first interconnecting link 40 is shown in a segment of three links—a vertically or up-and-down articulating link 20 followed by the first interconnecting link 40 and then a horizontally or side-to-side articulating link 30, separately in FIG. 14, coupled together in FIG. 15, and then articulated in FIG. 16. (The dashed lines labeled “vertical” and “horizontal” lie in the vertical and horizontal planes, respectively, with respect to the length of the link.)

The second interconnecting link 50 is similarly shown in a segment of three links—a horizontally or side-to-side articulating link 30 followed by the second interconnecting link 50 and then a vertically or up-and-down articulating link 20, separately in FIG. 17, coupled together in FIG. 18, and then articulated in FIG. 19.

In its most basic form, the necklace 10 will comprise a number of vertically (or up-and-down) articulating links 20 and a number of horizontally (or side-to-side) articulating links 30. Where the necklace 10 lays against the neck, the vertically or up-and-down articulating links 20 permit the necklace 10 to follow the contour of the neck. Below the neck, the necklace 10 should lay flat against the wearer's chest, which is achieved by utilizing horizontally or side-to-side articulating links 30. Because any given coupling of links 20 or 30 will allow articulation in only one manner, either in an up-and-down or a side-to-side fashion, the necklace 10 will resist flipping or twisting.

The actual number of each type (links 20 and links 30) depends in part on the length of the necklace 10 and the circumference of the wearer's neck. An equal number of each (links 20 and links 30) will work satisfactorily but a different ratio of links 20 and 30 could be employed as suits the application, for example, in a lengthy necklace where a substantial portion of the necklace 10 lays against the chest as opposed to against the neck of the wearer.

The necklace 10 is shown again in FIG. 20. The first and second interconnecting links 40 and 50 join the vertically or up-and-down articulating links 20 on the upper portion 14 of the necklace 10 (the top portion of the page) to the horizontally or side-to-side articulating links 30 on the lower portion 16 of the necklace 10. Again, the necklace 10 is completed by a clasp 12 which substitutes for one of the vertically or up-and-down articulating links 20. Recalling the directional references of FIGS. 2, 7 and 12, the necklace lies of FIG. 20 lies in the horizontal plane while the vertical plane is perpendicular to the page.

In the figures, the links are shown in various sizes, alternating between large and small. One may use different size links to accommodate different sizes of gemstones or, should the gemstones all be equal in size, then the links may also be of equal dimensions.

In lieu of using the first and second interconnecting links 40 and 50 to interconnect the vertically articulating links 20 to the horizontally articulating links 30, a coupling device consisting of a hinge element that enables horizontal or side-to-side articulation and a second hinge element that enables vertical or up-and-down articulation would be sufficient to interconnect the links of differing articulation, without the need to accommodate a gemstone. Further, the other links of the necklace 10 could also assume a different form and not carry gemstones, i.e., all metal.