Title:
BRUSH CAPABLE OF FACILITATING REMOVAL OF TANGLED HAIR STRANDS FROM BRISTLES THEREOF
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A brush includes a brush body and a plurality of bristles. The brush body includes an upper wall, and a lower wall that is aligned with the upper wall along a transverse direction, and that is movable relative to the upper wall between upper and lower positions. The upper wall has a bristle-mounting surface. The lower wall is formed with a plurality of bristle-extension apertures, and has a plurality of pairs of inclined surfaces. Each of the pairs of inclined surfaces extends from a corresponding one of the bristle-extension apertures toward the upper wall and defines a space that diverges from the corresponding one of the bristle-extension apertures. The bristles are mounted on the bristle-mounting surface of the upper wall, and extend between the pairs of inclined surfaces and through the bristle-extension apertures when the lower wall is disposed at the upper position.



Inventors:
Wang, Huo-pia (Chang-Hua City, TW)
Application Number:
11/695849
Publication Date:
07/26/2007
Filing Date:
04/03/2007
Assignee:
Wang, Huo-pia (Chang-Hua City, TW)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A46B5/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
KARLS, SHAY LYNN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
GROSSMAN, TUCKER, PERREAULT & PFLEGER, PLLC (MANCHESTER, NH, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A brush comprising: a brush body including an upper wall, and a lower wall that is aligned with said upper wall along a transverse direction, and that is movable relative to said upper wall between upper and lower positions, said upper wall having a bristle-mounting surface, said lower wall being formed with a plurality of bristle-extension apertures, and having a plurality of pairs of inclined surfaces, each of said pairs of inclined surfaces extending from a corresponding one of said bristle-extension apertures toward said upper wall and defining a space that diverges from the corresponding one of said bristle-extension apertures; and a plurality of bristles that are mounted on said bristle-mounting surface of said upper wall, and that extend between said pairs of inclined surfaces and through said bristle-extension apertures when said lower wall is disposed at the upper position.

2. The brush as claimed in claim 1, wherein said bristle-extension apertures are in the form of parallel elongated slots, said inclined surfaces in each of said pairs of inclined surfaces are respectively disposed at opposite sides of the corresponding one of said bristle-extension apertures, and said bristles are arranged in rows that correspond to said elongated slots.

3. The brush as claimed in claim 1, further comprising: an operating member disposed above said upper wall, and connected to said lower wall; and a biasing member disposed between said operating member and said upper wall, and extending along the transverse direction, said biasing member biasing said operating member to pull said lower wall to the upper position, where said lower wall contacts said upper wall; wherein said operating member overcomes biasing force provided by said biasing member when pressed downwardly in the transverse direction so as to move said lower wall from the upper position to the lower position, such that said bristles are hidden in a gap formed between said upper and lower walls.

4. The brush as claimed in claim 3, wherein said upper wall of said brush body is formed with two guiding slots, said brush body further including two guiding plates that extend from said lower wall through said guiding slots respectively, said operating member including a press plate that is connected to said guiding plates and that abuts against said biasing member.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application is a continuation-in-part (CIP) of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/199,834, entitled “BRUSH PROVIDED WITH RETRACTABLE BRISTLES TO FACILITATE REMOVAL OF TANGLED HAIR STRANDS”, filed on Aug. 9, 2005, and abandoned as of the filing date of this application, the teachings of which are hereby incorporated by reference in their entirety.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates to a brush, more particularly to a brush that can facilitate removal of tangled hair strands from bristles thereof.

2. Description of the Related Art

As shown in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2, U.S. Pat. No. 3,368,554 discloses a hairbrush 1 that includes a brush body 11, an operating member 12 disposed on the brush body 11, and a bristle unit 13. The operating member 12 includes a cleaning plate 123 formed with a plurality of apertures 121, and a press arm 122 connected to the cleaning plate 123 and extending through the brush body 11. The bristle unit 13 includes a plurality of bristles 131 arranged on a bottom side of the brush body 11 and positioned corresponding to the apertures 121 in the operating member 12. As shown in FIG. 1, when the brush body 11 is in a state of use, the bristles 131 extend through the apertures 121 so as to facilitate hair combing. As shown in FIG. 2, when the press arm 122 of the operating member 12 is operated downwardly due to an external force such that the cleaning plate 123 moves away from the brush body 11, the bristles 131 are hidden in a space defined between the cleaning plate 123 and the brush body 11, thereby removing hair strands tangled among the bristles 131 and leaving the hair strands thus removed on the cleaning plate 123 for easy cleaning by a user.

However, since hair strands of an animal (such as a cat or a dog) are often badly angled, and since the bristles 131 are made from a plastic material and have large diameters, the hairbrush 1 cannot effectively disentangle the hair strands of such an animal.

As shown in FIG.3, a hairbrush 9 for improving on the aforesaid shortcoming is disclosed in U.S. Patent Application Publication No. US2006/0207623. The hairbrush 9 includes a brush body 91, a moving member 92 disposed below the brush body 91, a control member 93 connected to the moving member 92 and operable to drive movement of the moving member 92, and a plurality of bristles 94 fixed to the brush body 91. The bristles 94 are made from metal, and are thin and tapered. By operating the control member 93, the bristles 91 can extend through a plurality of apertures 921 formed in the moving member 92, or can be disposed in a space between the brush body 91 and the moving member 92. Due to the metal, thin and tapered bristles 94, effective disentanglement of hair strands is achieved.

However, since the bristles 94 are thin and tapered, if tips of the bristles 94 are exposed from the moving member 92 when the control member 93 is operated such that the bristles 94 are disposed in the space between the brush body 91 and the moving member 92, it is easy for the user to get scratched or pricked when cleaning hair strands off the moving member 92.

However, under the case where the bristles 94 are designed to be completely hidden in the space between the brush body 91 and the moving member 92 upon operation of the control member 93, smooth and successful movement of the bristles 94 through the apertures 921 is easily jeopardized if the bristles 94 are deformed. Therefore, operation of the hairbrush 9 is not safe and smooth, and therefore the hairbrush 9 is not practical.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore, the object of the present invention is to provide a brush that facilitates removal of tangled hair strands, and that can be operated safely and smoothly.

According to the present invention, there is provided a brush that includes a brush body and a plurality of bristles. The brush body includes an upper wall, and a lower wall that is aligned with the upper wall along a transverse direction, and that is movable relative to the upper wall between upper and lower positions. The upper wall has a bristle-mounting surface. The lower wall is formed with a plurality of bristle-extension apertures, and has a plurality of pairs of inclined surfaces. Each of the pairs of inclined surfaces extends from a corresponding one of the bristle-extension apertures toward the upper wall and defines a space that diverges from the corresponding one of the bristle-extension apertures. The bristles are mounted on the bristle-mounting surface of the upper wall, and extend between the pairs of inclined surfaces and through the bristle-extension apertures when the lower wall is disposed at the upper position.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Other features and advantages of the present invention will be come apparent in the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment with reference to the accompanying drawings of which:

FIG.1 is a sectional view of a hairbrush disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,368,554, illustrating a combing state of the hairbrush;

FIG.2 is a sectional view similar to FIG.1, but illustrating a cleaning state of the hairbrush;

FIG.3 is a schematic view of a hairbrush disclosed in U.S. Pat. Application Publication No. 2006/0207623;

FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view of the preferred embodiment of a brush according to the present invention;

FIG.5 is an assembled perspective view of the preferred embodiment;

FIG.6 is an assembled sectional view of the preferred embodiment, illustrating a normal combing state of the brush; and

FIG.7 is an assembled sectional view of the preferred embodiment, illustrating a state where bristles of the brush are hidden.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

As shown in FIG.4 and FIG.5, the preferred embodiment of a brush according to the present invention includes a brush body 2, a handgrip 3, a bristle unit 4, an operating member 5, and a biasing member 6.

The brush body 2 includes an upper wall 21 and a lower wall 22. The lower wall 22 is aligned with the upper wall 21 along a transverse direction (X), and is movable relative to the upper wall 21 between an upper position (as shown in FIG. 6) and a lower position (as shown in FIG. 7). The upper wall 21 has a grip-mounting surface 211 and a bristle-mounting surface 212 opposite to the grip-mounting surface 211. The grip-mounting surface 211 is formed with a protruding base 213. The base 213 is formed with a recess 214, and includes a stud 216 that extends into the recess 214. The upper wall 21 is formed with two guiding slots 215 that are parallel to the transverse direction (X), and that extend through the grip-mounting surface 211, the bristle-mounting surface 212 and the protruding base 213. The lower wall 22 has an inner surface 221 and a combing surface 222, and is formed with a plurality of bristle-extension apertures 223 extending through the inner surface 221 and the combing surface 222. With further reference to FIG.6, the lower wall 22 has a plurality of pairs of inclined surfaces 224, each of which extends from a corresponding one of the bristle-extension apertures 223 toward the upper wall 21, and defines a space 225 that diverges from the corresponding one of the bristle-extension apertures 223.

In this embodiment, the bristle-extension apertures 223 are in the form of parallel elongated slots. The inclined surfaces 224 in each of the pairs of inclined surfaces 224 are respectively disposed at opposite sides of the corresponding one of the bristle-extension apertures 223. The brush body 2 further includes two guiding plates 23 extending from the inner surface 221 of the lower wall 22 through the guiding slots 215 in the upper wall 21, respectively.

The handgrip 3 is connected to the grip-mounting surface 211 of the upper wall 21 to serve as a medium for the user to grasp.

The bristle unit 4 includes a plurality of bristles 41 that are mounted on and that are arranged in rows on the bristle-mounting surface 212 of the upper wall 21 corresponding to the bristle-extension apertures 223 in the lower wall 22.

The operating member 5 is disposed above the upper wall 21, and is connected to the lower wall 22. The operating member 5 includes a press plate 50 that is connected to the guiding plates 23 and that abuts against the biasing member 6. In this embodiment, the guiding plate 50 has a bottom surface 51 that is formed with an annular protrusion 52, and includes two hooks 53. The annular protrusion 52 is aligned with the recess 214 in the base 213, while the hooks 53 are connected respectively to the guiding plates 23 in a snap engaging manner so as to be co-movable with the lower wall 22 relative to the upper wall 21 in the transverse direction (X).

The biasing member 6 is disposed between the operating member 5 and the upper wall 21, and extends along the transverse direction (X). In this embodiment, the biasing member 6 extends into the recess 214 in the base 213 on the upper wall 21 and into the annular protrusion 52, and has a lower end 61 that is sleeved on the stud 216 in the recess 214.

As shown in FIG. 5 and FIG. 6, when there are no external forces pressing against the operating member 5, the brush is disposed in a normal combing state. In the normal combing state, the biasing member 6 biases the operating member 5 to pull the lower wall 22 to the upper position (as shown in FIG. 6), where the lower wall 22 contacts the upper wall 21 such that the bristles 41 extend through the bristle-extension apertures 223 and are exposed from the combing surface 222. The user can thus begin combing by holding onto the handgrip 3.

As shown in FIG. 5 and FIG. 7, when the operating member 5 is pressed downwardly, e.g., by pressing with a thumb, in the transverse direction (X) with an external force greater than the biasing force provided by the biasing member 6, the biasing force is overcome by the operating member 5 so as to move the lower wall 22 from the upper position (as shown in FIG.6) to the lower position (as shown in FIG.7), such that a gap 24 is formed between the upper and lower walls 21, 22, and such that the bristles 41 are hidden in the gap 24. As a result, tangled hair strands are left on the combing surface 222 and can be cleaned easily, for example, by sweeping with fingers.

As shown in FIG.6 and FIG.7, it is of special importance that the brush according to the present invention still functions properly even if some of the bristles 41 are slightly deformed. In particular, when a bristle 41 is slightly deformed, during movement of the lower wall 22 from the lower position (as shown in FIG.7) to the upper position (as shown in FIG. 6), due to the space 225 defined by a corresponding pair of inclined surfaces 224, a tip of the slightly deformed bristle 41 is disposed in the space 225 so as to be guided by the corresponding pair of inclined surfaces 224 and to eventually slide into a corresponding one of the bristle-extension apertures 223.

In sum, the brush according to the present invention has the following advantages and effects:

By disposing the lower wall 22 at the lower position (as shown in FIG.7), the bristles 41 of the bristle unit 4 are completely hidden in the gap 24 formed between the upper and lower walls 21, 22 such that tips of the bristles 41 do not extend out of the bristle-extension apertures 223, thereby preventing the user from getting scratched or pricked when cleaning hair strands off the combing surface 222 of the lower wall 22 so as to ensure safety when using the brush. Further, tips of slightly deformed bristles 41 are guided by corresponding pairs of inclined surfaces 224 into corresponding bristle-extension apertures 223 such that smooth operation of the brush is ensured.

While the present invention has been described in connection with what is considered the most practical and preferred embodiment, it is understood that this invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiment but is intended to cover various arrangements included within the spirit and scope of the broadest interpretation as to encompass all such modifications and equivalent arrangements.





 
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