Title:
Umbrella with rain measuring device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present umbrella includes conventional umbrella structures such for a spring loaded self opening umbrella but may be fashioned using other well known umbrella structures but preferably includes a hollow, water tight umbrella shaft. A rain collector cup for receiving rain water is mounted at the upper end of the preferably hollow umbrella shaft. The rain collector cup drains into the hollow umbrella shaft. A flexible rain tube sized to seal with the inside surface of the umbrella shaft is positioned to channel rain water around any perforation or latch mounted in the umbrella shaft. A rain gauge receptacle located at the lower end of the umbrella shaft receives rain water from the umbrella shaft. The rain gauge receptacle is preferably removable for dumping accumulated rain water, transparent and graduated with markings for indicating the amount of rainfall.



Inventors:
Porter, Irwin Crist (Quinter, KS, US)
Application Number:
11/345698
Publication Date:
11/01/2007
Filing Date:
02/01/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
135/48
International Classes:
A45B3/00; A45B25/28
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
WILSON, KAITLIN A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Irwin C. Porter (Quinter, KS, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. An umbrella with rain measuring device comprising: a collector cup; a hollow umbrella shaft rain tube; a rain gauge receptacle; said umbrella having a hollow water tight shaft for receiving rain water from said collector cup; said collector cup having an open top portion, a body portion, a converging portion and an insert portion sized to fit into the top of said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube; said rain gauge receptacle having a body portion and a threaded neck portion sized and threaded to engage with the threaded portion of said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube, thereby being removable from said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube.

2. The umbrella with rain measuring device according to claim 1 wherein said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube embodies an insert portion sized to seal with the inside walls of said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube in such a manner as to bypass the shuttle latch and its associated slot in said hollow umbrella shaft thereby directing the flow or rain water away from said shuttle latch and said associated shuttle latch slot.

3. The umbrella with rain measuring device according to claim 1, wherein said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube embodies said rain gauge receptacle having a threaded neck portion sized and threaded to engage with the threaded portion of said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube, being translucent or transparent and marked with graduated markings for indicating the amount of rainfall received through said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube, said markings spaced in accordance with a standard measurement such as inches or centimeters and said markings being compressed or expanded according to the square of the inside diameter of said rain gauge collector cup to the inside diameter of the of said rain gauge receptacle, designed to compensate for the angle of incidence of said collector cup with falling rain.

4. The umbrella with rain measuring device according to claim 1, with said rain collector cup serving as a handle for said umbrella with rain measuring device and being sized to pressure fit into a support stand having a spike and a cross shaped handle designed for driving said support into a soil surface thereby allowing said umbrella with rain measuring device to be supported in a free standing vertical position for receiving rainfall.

5. The umbrella with rain measuring device according to claim 1 with said rain gauge collector receptacle serving as a handle for said umbrella with rain measuring device and said rain gauge collector receptacle being shaped as any miniature commercially available article such as a beverage bottle which would serve as a trademark indices for the bottler as a advertising medium.

6. The umbrella with rain measuring device according to claim 1, having said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube, a canopy, canopy support spokes, spoke braces, secondary spoke braces, and a shuttle latch which is pivotally mounted within said hollow umbrella shaft rain tube, said umbrella with hollow umbrella rain tube being a typical hollow shaft umbrella except for the presence of said collector cup, said rain tube, and said rain gauge receptacle.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to an umbrella which includes a rain gauge measuring device.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

A person using an umbrella may wish to measure the rate of rainfall. In areas subject to flash flooding or flash flooding of roadways, knowing the amount or rate of rainfall is a matter of personal safety. In areas subject to flooding, a pedestrian who is able to measure a large amount of rainfall in a short period of time may choose to avoid low lying areas and may choose to avoid driving a car into low lying areas. Presently, no convenient method for measuring rainfall is available for persons using an umbrella.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The aforementioned need is addressed by providing an umbrella which incorporates a rain gauge. The umbrella of the present invention includes an umbrella frame including a preferably hollow umbrella shaft. The present umbrella includes conventional umbrella structures such as a canopy supported by collapsible spokes interconnected with a shuttle which slides up and down the shaft to open and close the umbrella. A rain collector cup for receiving rain water is mounted at the upper end of the preferably hollow, water tight umbrella shaft. The rain collector cup drains into the hollow umbrella shaft. A removable transparent graduated rain gauge receptacle at the lower end of the umbrella shaft receives rain water from the umbrella shaft.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a plan view of the umbrella of the present invention.

FIG. 2A is a magnified view of a collector cup.

FIG. 2B is a magnified view of a rain gauge receptacle.

FIG. 3 is a plan view of the present umbrella shown with a support stand.

FIG. 3A is an enlarged side view of the support stand shown in FIG. 3.

FIG. 3B is a sectional view of the support stand taken from plane B-B of FIG. 3A. FIG. 4 is a magnified view of a rain gauge receptacle shown as a beverage bottle.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Referring to FIG. 1, an embodiment of a rain gauge equipped umbrella 10 is shown to generally include an umbrella shaft 12, a canopy 16, canopy support spokes 18, spoke braces 22, secondary spoke braces 22A, a shuttle 24, a shuttle latch 26 a collector cup 30, a rain tube 40 and rain gauge receptacle 50. Except for the presence of collector cup 30, rain tube 40 and rain gauge receptacle 50, umbrella 10 is a typical hollow shafted umbrella. A shuttle latch 26A is pivotably mounted within shaft 12. Shuttle 24 includes a notch 24A for receiving shuttle latch 26A which is pivotably mounted within shaft 12. Shaft 12 is preferably a hollow water tight tube which can serve a second function of receiving rain water from collector cup 30 and conveying the rain water to rain gauge receptacle 50. Rain tube 40 fits within shaft 12 and receives rain water and channels it around shuttle latch 26A and the slot associated with shuttle latch 26A.

Umbrella 10 is preferably a self opening umbrella of the type well known in the art. A self opening umbrella does not require a second latch mechanism and associated penetration of shaft 12 at the upper end of the umbrella. An upper ring member 24B is biased away from shuttle 24 by a spring 24C. A stop ring 25 fixed toward the upper end of shaft 12 stops the travel of ring member 24B and shuttle 24. Spoke braces 22 are pivotably attached at their opposite ends to support spokes 18 and ring member 24B. Secondary spoke braces 22A are pivotably attached at their opposite ends to spoke braces 22 and shuttle 24, thus completing the necessary mechanism for a self opening umbrella. Spring 24C forces the umbrella open until ring member 24B encounters stop ring 25. Although a self opening umbrella is preferred, a non-self opening umbrella may be used especially if the shuttle latches are arranged in positions external to shaft 12.

The rain collecting and measurements elements of umbrella 10 include collector cup 30, a rain tube 40 and rain gauge receptacle 50. Collector cup 30 and rain gauge receptacle 50 are shown in-greater detail in FIGS. 2A and 2B respectively. As noted above, shaft 12 is hollow and water tight for receiving rain water from collector cup 30. Collector cup 30 includes an open top portion 32, a body portion 34, a converging portion 36 and an insert portion 38. Insert portion 38 is sized to fit into the top of shaft 12. Rain tube 40 is sized to seal with the inside walls of shaft 12 and is positioned to bypass shuttle latch 26A and its associated slot. The lower portion of shaft 12 includes a threaded portion 14. Rain gauge receptacle 50 includes a body portion 52 and a threaded neck portion 54. Threaded neck portion 54 is sized and threaded to engage with threaded portion 14 of shaft 12. It is important that rain gauge receptacle 50 be removable so that accumulated rain water may be dumped. Rain gauge receptacle 50 is preferably transparent and marked with graduated markings 56 for indicating the amount of rainfall. With the addition of rain tube 40, shaft 12 provides a convenient channel for directing water from collector 30 to rain gauge receptacle 50. Those skilled in the art should appreciate that should shaft 12 be solid, any suitable tube communicating between collector 30 and rain gauge receptacle 50 can be used to convey rain water from collector 30 to rain gauge receptacle 50.

As can be seen in FIG. 2B, rain gauge receptacle 50 includes graduated markings 56. As can also be seen in FIGS. 2A and 2B, collector cup 30 has an inside diameter of D1 while rain gauge receptacle 50 has an inside diameter of D2. The spacing of graduated markings 56 may be spaced in accordance with a standard measurement system such as inches or centimeters if the ratio of D1 to D2 is one. However, if the ratio of D1 to D2 is less than or greater than one, then graduated markings 56, to be accurate, should be compressed or expanded by a degree that is generally equal to the ratio of the square of D1 to the square of D2. It may be preferable to consider the typical or average angle of shaft 12 when umbrella 12 is in use and adjust graduated markings 56 to account for the reduction of collecting area caused by the angle of shaft 12. If a typical umbrella user holds an umbrella at 15 degrees to the vertical, then the ratio of the areas of a circle of a given diameter and a 75 degree ellipse having a major axis of the same magnitude as the diameter may be an additional correction factor for the spacing of markings 56. Yet, in any case, the purpose of the invention is not to provide precise meteorological measurements but to alert the user as to the general magnitude of local rainfall.

FIGS. 3-3B illustrate an optional support stand 100 that may be used to support umbrella 10 in a vertical position. While supported by support stand 100, umbrella 10 may serve the function of a rain gauge. As can be seen in FIG. 3A, support stand 100 includes a body 102 and a handle 120. Body 102 further includes a cup portion 104 and a spike portion 106. Cup portion 104 is shaped and sized to receive rain gauge receptacle 50. Spike portion 106 has a bore 106A for receiving handle 120. As can be seen in FIGS. 3A and 3B, spike portion 104 is pointed and has a cross shaped cross section for driving into a soil surface such as a soil surface 150 shown in FIG. 3. As can be seen in FIG. 3, support stand 100 may be used to support umbrella 10 in an upright position for functioning as a rain gauge. Handle 120 is inserted into bore 106A and used to manually drive spike portion 106 into ground surface 150.

FIG. 4 illustrates the rain gauge receptacle which may be stylized as a handle for the umbrella with rain measuring device, to represent any commercially available object such as a beverage bottle, for purposes of advertising.

Accordingly, the objectives of the invention have been satisfied by a practical umbrella incorporating a rain gauge which will collect and measure rainfall when in use. One using such an umbrella during a rain shower will obtain a sufficiently accurate measurement of local rain fall and thus if the amounts of rain fall are extreme, use that information to avoid danger.

It is to be understood that while certain forms of this invention have been illustrated and described, it is not limited thereto.

It is to be understood that the UMBRELLA WITH RAIN MEASURING DEVICE is not limited to the sole embodiment within the scope of the following claims:





 
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