Title:
Backpack adapted for use as a kite
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A backpack that is convertible to a toy kite. The backpack has strings that are useable either as kite strings or as shoulder harnesses. The backpack may optionally be fitted with looms that take out the excess string when used as shoulder harnesses. The backpack also may optionally be fitted with clamps that secure the bottom of the pack when used as a backpack and double as handles when used as a kite.



Inventors:
Martin, Daryl J. (Meridian, ID, US)
Martin, Candace (Meridian, ID, US)
Application Number:
11/265389
Publication Date:
05/03/2007
Filing Date:
11/01/2005
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
244/155R
International Classes:
A45F4/02; A63H27/08
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
SKURDAL, COREY NELSON
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SHAVER & SWANSON, LLP (BOISE, ID, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A backpack configurable for use as a kite, comprising: a bag having a closed end and an openable end, a first string having first anchored end and a first free end, the first anchored end attached to the bag; a second string having a second anchored end and a second free end, the second anchored end attached to the bag; whereby the first and second strings are usable to tether the backpack when the backpack is configured for use as a kite, and the first and second strings are usable as shoulder harnesses by securing the first free end and the second free end to the bag when the backpack is configured for use as a backpack.

2. The backpack of claim 1, further comprising: one or more attachment structures attached to the bag; and a first removable pouch attachable to the attachment structures; whereby the first removable pouch may be removed when the backpack is configured for use as a kite.

3. The backpack of claim 1, wherein the bag is constructed of lightweight material.

4. The backpack of claim 1, further comprising: a first support member attached to the first free end; and a second support member attached to the second free end; wherein the first and second support members are adapted for use as handles and are operable to clamp the closed end of the bag.

5. The backpack of claim 4, wherein the first support member further comprises a first latch mechanism and the second support member further comprises a second latch mechanism; wherein the first and second latch mechanisms are adapted to connect the first and second support members together.

6. The backpack of claim 1, further comprising: a loom adapted to hold a portion of the first string; and a shoulder pad adapted to enclose the loom; whereby the loom is used to hold a portion of the first string when the first string is used as a shoulder harness.

7. The backpack of claim 1, further comprising: a shoulder pad having a cavity adapted for storing a portion of the first string.

8. The backpack of claim 1, further comprising: a second removable pouch adapted for insertion inside the bag.

9. The backpack of claim 8, further comprising: one or more attachment structures attached to the second removable pouch; and a first removable pouch attachable to the attachment structures; whereby the first removable pouch may be removed when the backpack is configured for use as a kite.

10. A kite configurable as a backpack, comprising: a bag having a closed end, an openable end, and constructed of lightweight material; a drawstring closure affixed to the openable end; a first string attached to the bag; a second string attached to the bag; a first support member attached to the first string and adapted for use as a handle, wherein the first support member is; and a second support member attached to the second string and adapted for use as a handle, wherein the second support member is adapted to connect to the first support member; whereby the kite is configured for use as a backpack by connecting the first support member to the second support member and clamping the first and second support members to the bag, thus making the strings usable as shoulder harnesses; and the kite is configured for use as a kite by disconnecting the first and second support members, thus freeing the support members for use as handles to hold the strings in tension as wind inflates the bag.

11. The kite of claim 10, further comprising: a first loom adapted to secure the first string; a second loom adapted to secure the second string; a first shoulder pad adapted to enclose the first loom; and a second shoulder pad adapted to enclose the second loom; whereby the first and second looms are used to hold respective portions of the first and second strings, when the first and second strings are used as a shoulder harnesses.

12. The kite of claim 10, further comprising: one or more hooks attached to the bag; and a first removable pouch attachable to the hooks; whereby the first removable pouch may be removed when the backpack is configured for use as a kite.

13. The kite of claim 10, further comprising: a second removable pouch adapted for insertion inside the bag.

14. The kite of claim 13, further comprising: one or more attachment structures attached to the second removable pouch; and a first removable pouch attachable to the attachment structures; whereby the first removable pouch may be removed when the backpack is configured for use as a kite.

15. A kite configurable as a backpack, comprising: a bag having a closed end and an openable end; means for tethering the bag when it is supported aloft by air; and means for supporting the bag when it is carrying cargo.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The invention relates generally to backpacks, and more particularly to a backpack convertible for use as a toy.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Backpacks have become virtually required equipment for children of all ages. They tote their school supplies, clothing, toys, and the like to and from daycare, school, and college daily.

A traditional backpack is only usable to carry cargo to and from a destination; however, a backpack convertible to a toy could be used to provide hours of entertainment to a child who must wait for transportation or for classes to start and the like. But not just any toy will do: a backpack must be easily convertible between backpack and toy modes, it must not over burden the child with additional weight, the toy feature must not add a great deal of additional cost to the backpack, and it must be exciting and fun to hold the child's attention.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

A conventional backpack is designed to be durable and is often very heavy and inflexible. However, by using lightweight materials and appropriate features, the present invention transforms the traditional heavy backpack for use as a kite. An embodiment of the invention has two strings to perform double duty as kite strings and as shoulder harnesses. To use the backpack as a kite, the child merely unloads the bag that makes up the main compartment of the backpack and then unhooks the strings and runs along, allowing the wind to inflate the bag and provide tension on the strings.

Additional features are presented to increase the utility as a kite. In some embodiments, the strings may be fitted with shoulder pads to provide more comfort while wearing the backpack. Shoulder pads may enclose a loom allowing the additional string to be taken up while used as shoulder harnesses. In some embodiments, a clamp is provided at the end of each string. The clamps hook together and clamp to the bottom of the bag to spread the bag wide, allowing easier loading and more rigid support of the cargo within the bag while it is being carried.

In addition, some embodiments provide zipper pouches and bottle pockets to increase the utility as a backpack. Each of these items may be removable.

The purpose of the foregoing summary is to enable the United States Patent and Trademark Office and the public generally, and especially the scientists, engineers, and practitioners in the art who are not familiar with patent or legal terms or phraseology, to determine quickly from a cursory inspection, the nature and essence of the technical disclosure of the application. The summary is neither intended to define the invention of the application, which is measured by the claims, nor is it intended to be limiting as to the scope of the invention in any way.

Additional objects, advantages and novel features of the invention will be set forth in part in the description which follows and in part will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon examination of the following or may be learned by practice of the invention. The objects and advantages of the invention may be realized and attained by means of the instrumentalities and combinations particularly pointed out in the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a front view of an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a side view of a loom according to an embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 3 is a front view of an optional shoulder pad containing the loom described in FIG. 2, according to an embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 4 is a front view of a detachable storage compartment according to an embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of an embodiment of the invention in use as a kite.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

While the invention is susceptible of various modifications and alternative constructions, certain illustrated embodiments thereof have been shown in the drawings and will be described below in detail. It should be understood, however, that there is no intention to limit the invention to the specific form disclosed, but, on the contrary, the invention is to cover all modifications, alternative constructions, and equivalents falling within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined in the claims

The present invention transforms the conventional backpack for use as a kite by using lightweight materials and appropriate features. Conventional backpacks are too heavy and lack features appropriate for use as a toy, particularly for use as a kite.

FIG. 1 illustrates an embodiment of backpack 10 configurable as a kite. The main compartment of backpack 10 is made up of a bag 12 that is preferably constructed with lightweight, windproof material. Backpack 12 may be optionally fitted with a drawstring 14 to hold the open end of the bag closed while carrying cargo. Bag 12 may be fitted with hooks or loops 16 to anchor strings 18 to the backpack. There are preferably two strings 18, one string 18 attached to the left side of bag 12 and one string 18 attached to the right side of bag 12. The free ends of string 18 may be used to control backpack 10 when used as a kite. In some embodiments, the free end of each string 18 may be secured to bag 12 so that each string 18 may be used as a backpack shoulder harness. To facilitate securing the free end of string 18, additional loops 16 may be attached to the lower part of bag 12 (not shown.)

In a preferred embodiment, the free end of each string 18 is connected to a support member 20. Each support member 20 includes a front section (shown in FIG. 1), and a similar rear section (not shown.) The front section and rear section are each referred to as jaws. The support members 20 are configured so they connect together and then clamp to the bottom of the bag 12, spreading the bag 12 wide so that cargo may be easily loaded. Support members 20 also provide rigid support to the bottom of bag 12 so that cargo may be carried without sagging behind the user. Each support member 20 may be constructed so an identical copy of support member 20 may be attached either to the left or right string 18. Two latch mechanisms 21 connect the left and right support members 20 together. Preferably, each latch mechanism 21 consists of two parts. In the exemplary embodiment shown in FIG. 1, the first part of a latch 21 is fitted on left support member 20 in the front, and on right support member 20 in the rear. The second part of a latch 21 is fitted on left support member 20 in the rear, and on right support member 20 in the front, so that the first part and second part of each latch 21 mates, latching the support members 20 together. In this way, the same support member 20 may be used for both the left and right sides of backpack 10. Alternatively, latches 21 may be fitted on the sides near where strings 18 attach to support members 20, or in any location around backpack 10. In another embodiment, support members 20 may be spring loaded clamps, wherein the front and rear jaws are hinged along their length, and springs provide a force closing the jaws of each support member 20 over the bottom of the bag.

In another embodiment, support members 20 may be constructed of nylon webbing and latches 21 may be a buckle, clip, hook and loop fastener, or other device suitable to connect the right and left support members 20 together. In this embodiment, it is preferred to pass support members 20 through loops connected to the bottom of bag 12, allowing the support members 20 to support any heavy items carried in bag 12.

When support members 20 are disengaged from bag 12 and disconnected from each other, they are usable as handles to hold string 18 when backpack 10 is used as a kite. While support members 20 are shown in FIG. 1 as curved, support members 20 may be generally straight, providing a more convenient handle shape. Alternatively, support members 20 may be flexible, to provide a comfortable grip. If support members 20 are made of nylon webbing or similarly flexible material, they may be constructed as a loop so that the user's hand may pass through the loop for additional security. Strings 18 may also be fitted with shoulder pads 22 to provide more comfort while the bag is being carried.

Referring now to FIG. 2, each string 18 may be fitted with a loom 24. In this context, a loom is a device having horns or other features on which string may be wound or wrapped. When backpack 10 is configured as a kite, string 18 may be unwound from loom 24 so that string 18 stretches out to its full length. Referring now to FIG. 3, when backpack 10 is configured as a backpack, string 18 may be wound around the horns of loom 24, taking up any slack, and shortening string 18 to the appropriate length for use as shoulder harness. In the preferred embodiment shown in FIG. 3, shoulder pads 22 may be constructed with a cavity 26 of sufficient size to hold loom 24, and a flap 28 that flips over to enclose loom 24, protecting it from dirt and snagging while in use. An additional advantage of loom 24 is that it provides some structure and stiffness to shoulder pad 22.

In an alternative embodiment, loom 24 may be eliminated and string 18 may merely be tied in a loose knot that is contained within cavity 26. The knot can be untied when the string is to be lengthened for use as a kite string.

Referring again to FIG. 1, a removable bag 29 may be inserted into bag 12. Removable bag 29 may be used to store items when bag 12 is used as a kite, and conveniently inserted into bag 12 when the invention is configured for use as a backpack.

Bag 12 may optionally be fitted with one or more attachment structures 30. Optional pouch 32 shown in FIG. 4 can be attached to attachment structures 30 to provide a detachable storage compartment. Pouch 32 is fitted with fasteners 34 that attach to attachment structures 30 to secure pouch 32 to bag 12. Pouch 32 can be fitted with a zipper 36 to give secure access to the contents. Mesh pockets for holding bottles and the like may be removably attached in a similar fashion.

Fasteners 34 may be hooks, snap hooks, twist ties, or any other device capable of securing the pouch to attachment structures 30. Similarly, attachment structures 30 may be implemented as hooks, grommets, rings, snap hooks, twist ties, or any other device capable of supporting pouch 32. In an alternative embodiment, attachment structures 30 appear on pouch 32, and fasteners 34 appear on bag 12. In another embodiment, attachment structures 30 may be attached to removable bag 29, passing through slots in bag 12 so that the attachment structures 30 are exposed to attach pouch 32.

While the invention is susceptible of various modifications and alternative constructions, certain illustrated embodiments thereof have been shown in the drawings and will be described below in detail. It should be understood, however, that there is no intention to limit the invention to the specific form disclosed, but, on the contrary, the invention is to cover all modifications, alternative constructions, and equivalents falling within the scope of the invention as defined in the claims.