Title:
3 D Tree
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A multi-sided structure, primarily for outdoor use which is portable, quick setup and take down comprising of a basic cloth panel with sides forming a classic tee-pee style structure. The addition of removable artificial branches at the support post location, gives the visual impact of a three dimensional tree. Each support structure has Velcro style fasteners for the attachment of the artificial limbs. The addition of cloth loops, located in the middle of each cloth panel, is for securing the structure to the ground. Different artificial tree limb species allow this product to be used in numerous locations, blending into the surrounding landscape.



Inventors:
Hauser, David Jospeh (Winigan, MO, US)
Fuhr, David Roland (winigan, MO, US)
Application Number:
10/908627
Publication Date:
11/23/2006
Filing Date:
05/19/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04H15/24
View Patent Images:
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20090235967Stick and handle componentSeptember, 2009Lerner
20050189009Portable shelter systemSeptember, 2005Walter
20020100497Folding flat umbrellaAugust, 2002Austin
20030145881Variable weight and height adustable therapeutic caneAugust, 2003Harroun
20060289046Mobility assistance devicesDecember, 2006Cato III
20070283990CONVERTIBLE WHEELCHAIR AND WALKERDecember, 2007Fernandez et al.
20080017227Walking aid apparatusJanuary, 2008Ward
20020036008Umbrella base stand and tableMarch, 2002Hickam et al.
20030041889Catch-free automatic closing umbrella as effected by lotus-shape top ribsMarch, 2003Lin et al.



Primary Examiner:
HAWK, NOAH CHANDLER
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
David J. Hauser (Winigan, MO, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A multi-sided structure primarily for outdoor use which is portable, quick setup and take down comprising of a basic fabric or canvas panel with sides forming a classic, tee-pee style structure.

2. The addition of removable artificial branches at the support post locations, gives the visual impact of a three dimensional tree.

3. Each support structure has Velcro style fasteners for the attachment of the artificial limbs.

4. The addition of cloth loops, located in the middle of each cloth panel, is for securing the structure to the ground.

5. The structure will have a minimum of 3 or more poles for support dependent upon the overall size of the final structure.

6. The poles will be connected with an optical frame configuration which allows each pole the correct spacing at the top of the structure to complete the configuration of the tee-pee style frame work.

7. Each pole will be connected with a continuous metal or plastic insert to allow the structure to move from storage size to set up size without the disassembly of the frame.

8. The structure will have a fabric or canvas covering for the outer material.

9. The structure will have the optical frame, including the support poles, to be attached directly to the fabric.

10. Different artificial tree limb species allow this product to be used in numerous locations, blending into the surrounding landscape.

11. The means of entering or exiting the structure will be by means of a zipper, Velcro style or a hook and pile connector system.

12. The structure will have windows or openings between each of the support poles to allow for viewing.

13. The structure window openings will have a means of closing and opening as needed either by buttons, zippers and/or Velcro strips.

14. The overall structure is designed to be a portable structure for easy set-up and take down.

Description:

A multi-sided structure, primarily for outdoor use. Portable, quick setup and take down comprising of a basic cloth panel with sides forming a classic tee-pee style structure. The addition of removable artificial branches at the support post location, gives the visual impact of a three dimensional tree. Each support structure has Velcro style fasteners for the attachment of the artificial limbs. The addition of cloth loops, located in the middle of each cloth panel, is for securing the structure to the ground. Different artificial tree limb species allow this product to be used in numerous locations, blending into the surrounding landscape.

The present invention relates to tent style structures having sheet material walls supported by a collapsible or multi-pieced frame. The present invention provides, among other things, a different style/design for a tent that also houses a frame locking mechanism and three dimensional interchanging artificial limbs.

Collapsible tents, such as umbrella tents, are well known in the art. The term “umbrella tent” is commonly used in the trade because the frames for such tents can be erected and collapsed in much the same manner as an umbrella. Some exemplary collapsible tents are shown in, for example, U.S. Pat. No. 5,230,358 (Forell); U.S. Pat. No. 4,945,936 (D. Surrendi); U.S. Pat. No. 4,202,363 (Watts et al.); U.S. Pat. No. 3,929,146 (Maiken); and U.S. Pat. No. 2,771,087 (Simonson).

U.S. Pat. No. 5,230,358 shows a foldable tent and frame therefor that includes a number of complex drive mechanisms to move upper and lower spiders 14 and 16, respectively, toward and away from one another to erect and collapse the tent frame. The drive mechanisms also include a locking mechanism for securing the spider assembly in an erected condition.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,945,936 shows a collapsible tent having a frame with an upper clevis member 10 and a lower clevis member 11 that are manually moved towards and away from one another, without a complex drive mechanism, to erect and collapse the tent. The '936 tent does not contain, however, a separate locking mechanism to lock the upper and lower clevis members together. In order to assemble the tent, the tent is initially in a position like that shown in FIG. 2. The lower clevis member 11 is then forced up towards the upper clevis member 10. The structure of the tent creates a force resisting upward movement of the lower clevis member 11 towards the upper clevis member 10 until the radial brace members 28 become generally horizontal. Thereafter, the force on the lower clevis member 11 actually causes the lower clevis member 11 to move towards the upper clevis member 10. As a result, in an assembled state as shown in FIGS. 1 and 5, wherein the stop member 26 is seated within the recess 15, the tent is self-sustaining and an additional locking mechanism is not included. The '963 patent can collapse, however, upon the application of a modest downward pressure to the top of the upper clevis member when the frame is assembled.

U.S. Pat. No. 2,771,087 shows a portable screen having a locking mechanism that locks together an upper ridge piece 12 and a lower latching block 24. The locking mechanism of the '087 device also contains a number of drawbacks. In the '087 device, the latching block 24 has an upper cap member 30 with a coil spring 40 that biases loop portions 40 outwardly. The ridge piece 12 includes a central bore 20 that receives the cap member 30. A flexible element 44 is used to pull the cap member 30 vertically through the bore 20 of a ridge piece 12 to lock the latching block 24 to the ridge piece 12 once the loop portions 36 are seated above the screen 54 to lock the device. The drawbacks of the '087 device include, for example, that the locking mechanism can be: a) disadvantageously exposed to the environment; b) inconvenient since disassembly should be initiated from outside of the shelter; and c) undesirable because it involves mounting the frame outside of the screen 54 which reduces the design options of the device.

There remains a need in the art for the continued improvement of collapsible shelters and tents and, for example, for a collapsible shelter or tent having an improved means for locking a frame thereof in an assembled state.

The present invention provides a variety of features that overcome the above-noted problems and many other problems existing in the art. The invention relates to a multi-sided structure for outdoor use in connection with activities and sports. The structure comprises a plurality of sides or panels and a plurality of support poles. Each panel is a lightweight, flexible material that forms the outer surface of the structure.

According to another aspect of the invention, the need for complete concealment for photographers and other sportsmen, is currently not achieved with known existing designs. With the addition of artificial tree limbs, this creates the overall three dimensional appearance that has not been before attained.

Another aspect of the invention involves the provision of a collapsible structure/tent that has an improved means for locking a frame thereof in an assembled state. In this regard, the structure would include a collapsible frame including: a) three or more legs pivotally connected to a common member; and b) three or more panels connected with respect to the legs at an outer sides of the panels.

Preferably, the collapsible shelter/tent includes biasing means for biasing the engaging member into the groove automatically upon engagement of the first and second clevises.

In one exemplary embodiment, the first clevis is above the second clevis and the generally vertical pin extends downward from the first clevis towards the second clevis. Preferably, the socket is fixed to the second clevis and includes a central bore and a widened opening having a funnel-shape receiving surface. The diameter across the widened opening having the funnel-shape receiving surface is preferably substantially greater than a diameter across the vertical pin to ensure engagement and can be, for example, more than 2 times, or even more than 2.5 times, or even more than 3 times as great.

According to another aspect of the invention, an erection device is provided that includes: an assembly pole having a slide supported thereon; the assembly pole having a tip with an engagement element; the generally vertical pin having a lower end with a corresponding engagement element for engaging the tip of the assembly pole; and the second clevis and the socket having a through-hole through which the assembly pole is inserted so that the tip of the assembly pole can be engaged with the generally vertical pin.