Title:
Insulated Beverage Holster
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An insulated beverage holster includes an insulated beverage container holder, a holster back, and a fastener. The holster can be releasably fastened to a support object, such as a belt of a user, in a manner preventing the beverage from spilling, while providing the user with a convenient portable storage location, freeing the user's hands for other activities.



Inventors:
Will, Chris M. (Loveland, OH, US)
Loring, Steve (Cincinnati, OH, US)
Honerkamp, Anthony Joseph (Cincinnati, OH, US)
Application Number:
11/843143
Publication Date:
02/28/2008
Filing Date:
08/22/2007
Assignee:
WILL GEAR, LLC (Loveland, OH, US)
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
224/148.5
International Classes:
A45F5/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
LANDOLFI, JR., STEVEN M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DINSMORE & SHOHL LLP (CINCINNATI, OH, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A holster for holding a beverage, the holster comprising: at least one beverage container holder configured to adjust in size to allow the beverage container holder to hold at least one of a variety of differently sized beverage containers; a holster back configured to support the beverage container holder, the holster back comprising a post configured to provide the holster back with a substantially rigid, yet flexible support to allow the holster back to adjust under tension to a variety of positions; and a fastener configured to support the holster back and to releasably secure the holster to a variety of support objects capable of supporting the holster and at least one beverage container held by the holster.

2. The holster of claim 1, wherein the beverage container holder and the holster back are substantially configured of a collapsible material such that the holster may compactly fold.

3. The holster of claim 1, wherein the beverage container holder is substantially configured of an insulating material having a low heat transfer coefficient so as to minimize heat transfer from the beverage container.

4. The holster of claim 3, wherein the insulating material of the beverage container holder is neoprene.

5. The holster of claim 3, wherein the beverage container holder comprises a nylon exterior surface.

6. The holster of claim 3, wherein the insulating material is absorbent so as to substantially absorb condensation that may form on an exterior surface of the beverage container.

7. The holster of claim 1, wherein the beverage container holder comprises one or more elastic sections configured to provide a degree of elasticity to the beverage container holder to allow the beverage container holder to adjust in diameter.

8. The holster of claim 1, wherein the beverage container holder comprises one or more hook and loop fastener sections configured to allow the beverage container holder to adjust in diameter.

9. The holster of claim 1, wherein the beverage container holder comprises one or more couplers configured to releasably secure one or more personal items to an exterior surface of the beverage container holder.

10. The holster of claim 1, wherein the post comprises a length of no more than about a half of a length of the holster back and is positioned substantially at a top portion of the holster back.

11. The holster of claim 10, wherein the holster back is configured to fold down at about the half of the length of the holster back such that the holster back forms a handle for the beverage container holder.

12. The holster of claim 11, wherein: a bottom of the beverage container holder, a bottom portion of the holster back, or both, comprises a coupling, and the fastener is configured to releasably secure to the coupling of the beverage container holder or of the holster back when the holster back folds down to form a handle for the beverage holder container.

13. The holster of claim 1, wherein the holster further comprises a belt clip configured to releasably secure the holster to an article of clothing of the user.

14. The holster of claim 1, wherein the post of the holster back comprises a concave/convex configuration.

15. The holster of claim 1, wherein the substantially rigid, yet flexible support provided by the post is sufficient to allow the post and the holster back to flex under tension.

16. The holster of claim 1, wherein the fastener is a Velcro strap, a knob, a tie, a snap, a button, a clip, a belt clip, a clasp, a clamp, a sleeve, or other fastener, or a combination thereof.

17. The holster of claim 1, wherein the holster further comprises a swivel mount configured to rotatably couple the fastener to the holster back such that when the holster is releasably secured by the fastener to a support object, the holster back and the beverage container holder maintain a position substantially perpendicular to a ground surface when the support object and the fastener releasably secured thereto change positions with respect to the ground surface due to a user's movements.

18. A holster for holding a beverage, the holster comprising: at least one collapsible insulated beverage container holder configured to adjust in size to allow the beverage holder to adjust to hold at least one of a variety of differently sized beverage containers; a collapsible holster back configured to support the beverage container holder, the collapsible holster back comprising a post configured to provide a substantially rigid, yet flexible support to allow the collapsible holster back to adjust under tension to a variety of positions, wherein the collapsible holster back is configured to fold down at about a half of the length of the holster back such that the holster back forms a handle for the beverage container holder; and a fastener configured to support the collapsible holster back and to releasably secure the holster to a variety of different support objects capable of supporting the holster and at least one beverage container held by the holster.

19. The holster of claim 18, wherein the holster further comprises a swivel mount configured to rotatably couple the fastener to the collapsible holster back such that when the holster is releasably secured by the fastener to a support object, the collapsible holster back and the beverage container holder maintain a position substantially perpendicular to a ground surface when the support object and the fastener releasably secured thereto change positions with respect to the ground surface due to a user's movements.

20. A holster for holding a beverage, the holster comprising: at least one insulated beverage container holder configured to adjust in size to allow the beverage holder to adjust to hold at least one of a variety of differently sized beverage containers; a holster back configured to support the beverage container holder and to fold down at about the half of the length of the holster back such that the holster back forms a handle for the beverage container holder; and a fastener rotatably coupled to the holster back, the fastener configured to releasably secure the holster to a variety of support objects capable of supporting the holster and at least one beverage container held by the holster.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/823,109, filed Aug. 22, 2006, the entire disclosure of which is considered as part of the disclosure of the present application and is hereby incorporated by reference herein.

TECHNICAL FIELD

Embodiments of the present invention relate generally to a beverage container holder. More particularly, embodiments of the present invention relate to an insulated beverage holster configured to keep a beverage cold and from spilling, while providing a user with a convenient portable storage location, freeing the user's hands for other activities.

BACKGROUND

Some beverage container holders are provided with an insulting material configured to keep a beverage cold. Such holders may or may not be collapsible, depending on other materials forming the holder. Users of such holders generally need to rest the holder and their beverage on a surface when their hands are needed to perform other activities. Other holders may be configured to secure to a user to free up the user's hands. Such holders, however, typically are cumbersome and awkward and frequently allow a beverage to spill as a user moves or sits. Further, such holders typically are not insulated and thereby fail to significantly slow a temperature change to that of the surroundings. Accordingly, there is a need for an insulated beverage holster configured to keep a beverage cold and from spilling, while providing a user with a convenient portable storage location, freeing the user's hands for other activities.

SUMMARY

According to one embodiment, a holster for holding a beverage can comprise at least one beverage container holder configured to adjust in size to allow the beverage container holder to hold at least one of a variety of differently sized beverage containers. The holster also can comprise a holster back configured to support the beverage container holder, the holster back comprising a post configured to provide the holster back with a substantially rigid, yet flexible support to allow the holster back to adjust under tension to a variety of positions. Further, the holster can comprise a fastener configured to support the holster back and to releasably secure the holster to a variety of support objects capable of supporting the holster and at least one beverage container held by the holster.

According to another embodiment, a holster for holding a beverage can comprise at least one collapsible insulated beverage container holder configured to adjust in size to allow the beverage holder to adjust to hold at least one of a variety of differently sized beverage containers. The holster also can comprise a collapsible holster back configured to support the beverage container holder, the collapsible holster back comprising a post configured to provide a substantially rigid, yet flexible support to allow the collapsible holster back to adjust under tension to a variety of positions, wherein the collapsible holster back is configured to fold down at about a half of the length of the holster back such that the holster back forms a handle for the beverage container holder. Further, the holster can comprise a fastener configured to support the collapsible holster back and to releasably secure the holster to a variety of different support objects capable of supporting the holster and at least one beverage container held by the holster.

According to yet another embodiment, a holster for holding a beverage can comprise at least one insulated beverage container holder configured to adjust in size to allow the beverage holder to adjust to hold at least one of a variety of differently sized beverage containers. The holster also can comprise a holster back configured to support the beverage container holder and to fold down at about the half of the length of the holster back such that the holster back forms a handle for the beverage container holder. Further, the holster can comprise a fastener rotatably coupled to the holster back, the fastener configured to releasably secure the holster to a variety of support objects capable of supporting the holster and at least one beverage container held by the holster.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

It is believed that embodiments of the present invention will be better understood from the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is an illustration depicting an example of a beverage holster in accordance with a first embodiment;

FIG. 2 is an illustration depicting an example of a beverage holster in accordance with a second embodiment;

FIG. 3 is an illustration depicting an example of a beverage holster in accordance with a third embodiment;

FIG. 4 is an illustration depicting an example of a beverage holster in accordance with a fourth embodiment;

FIG. 5 is an illustration depicting an example of a belt clip for use with an embodiment of a beverage holster in accordance with one embodiment; and

FIG. 6 is an illustration depicting an example of a beverage holster in accordance with a fifth embodiment.

The embodiments set forth in the drawings are illustrative in nature and are not intended to be limiting of the invention defined by the claims. Moreover, individual aspects of the drawings and the invention will be more fully apparent and understood in view of the detailed description.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Embodiments generally relate to a holster for holding a beverage. Referring to FIG. 1, the holster 10 generally comprises at least one beverage container holder 12, a holster back 14, and a fastener 16.

The beverage container holder 12 may be configured to adjust in size to allow the beverage container holder 12 to hold at least one of a variety of differently sized beverage containers 18. More particularly, as shown in the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 1, the beverage container holder 12 may comprise one or more elastic sections 20. These elastic sections 20 may be configured to provide a degree of elasticity to the beverage container holder 12 to allow the beverage container holder 12 to adjust in diameter. Thereby, the beverage container holder having a pre-configured diameter may increase in diameter by a stretching of the elastic section 20 when a beverage container having a diameter larger than the pre-configured diameter of the holder 12 is inserted into the holder 12. In one exemplary embodiment, the elastic sections 22 may be configured as two or more sections integrated with the wall of the beverage container holder 12, as shown in FIG. 1, or, alternatively, as a single, unified section integrated with the wall of the beverage holder container.

In another exemplary embodiment of the present invention, shown in FIG. 2, the beverage container holder 12 may comprise a one or more hook and loop fastener sections 22, e.g. Velcro®. These hook and loop fastener sections 22 may be configured to allow the beverage container holder 12 to adjust in diameter. More particularly, the hook and loop fastener sections 22 may be released such that the diameter of the beverage container holder 12 may be adjusted, either increased or decreased, to allow the holder 12 to accommodate a variety of sizes of beverage containers 18. Therefore, the beverage container holder 12 may hold a beverage container 18 having one of various capacities, such as, but not limited to, 8 ounces, 12 ounces, 16 ounces, and 22 ounces.

Further, while a bottle is illustrated in FIGS. 1-4, other beverage containers may be supported by the holster 10 and the beverage container holder 12, such as but not limited to, a can, a glass, or a cup. In addition, as shown in FIG. 3, the bottom 30 of the beverage container holder 12 may be secured to the holder 12 by two or more straps to provide greater flexibility to the holder 12 in holding a variety of beverage containers in a variety of sizes. These straps be configured of an elastic or an inelastic material. In another exemplary embodiment, more than one beverage container holder 12 may be secured to the holster back 14 and supported by the holster 10. For example, although not shown in the figures, two beverage container holders may be secured to the holster back such that two beverage containers may be supported by the holster.

In another exemplary embodiment, depicted in FIG. 4, the beverage container holder 12 may also comprise one or more couplers 24 configured to releasably secure one or more personal items to an exterior surface of the beverage container holder 12. Thereby, the personal items may be releasably secured in a convenient, easily accessible location by a user of the holster. As shown in FIG. 4, these couplers 24 may be hook and loop fasteners configured to adjust in size to releasably secure a variety of differently shaped items. The couplers also may be an elastic or inelastic loop secured by a button, snap, clip, clasp, or other fastener, or combination thereof. In addition, the couplers also may be configured as simple ties, clips, or clasps, or other fasteners, or combination thereof, attached to the exterior surface of the beverage container holder. The personal items that may be releasably secured include, but are not limited to, cigarette lighters, cigarettes, cigarette packs, cigars, cigar lighters, bottle openers, packages or containers for rubbing tobacco, gum, credit cards, and keys.

The beverage container holder 12 or the holster back 14, or both, may be configured of a collapsible material such that the holster 10 may compactly fold and may be easily stored or placed in a pocket of the user's clothing. The beverage container holder 12 also may be configured of an insulating material, which may also be collapsible. In accordance with one exemplary embodiment, the beverage container holder is substantially configured of an insulating material having a low heat transfer coefficient so as to minimize heat transfer from the beverage container. The insulating material of the beverage container holder may be, but is not necessarily, neoprene. Further, the beverage container holder, whether or not substantially configured of the insulating material, may comprise a nylon exterior surface. The nylon exterior surface may provide a durable, rugged composition to the outside of the beverage container holder, while the neoprene or other insulating material may provide a soft, insulating composition to the inside of the beverage container holder where a beverage container is to be held so as to keep beverage containers cold for longer periods of time in warm surrounding temperatures. One skilled in the art could include various collapsible and/or insulating materials of the beverage container holder. Such materials may have low heat transfer coefficients and provide an insulating area minimizing heat transfer from the beverage container, as described above. In addition, the collapsible insulating material may be absorbent so as to substantially absorb condensation that may form on an exterior surface of a cold beverage container in warm surrounding temperatures. Further, the beverage container holder or the holster back, or both, may be substantially configured of a textile material configured to be embroidered or screen printed, or both, with one or more of any variety of images.

As shown in FIGS. 1-4, the holster back 14 generally is configured to support the beverage container holder 12. Therefore, the holster back generally must comprise a strength sufficient to support the beverage container holder and a beverage container held by the holder. The beverage container holder may be secured to the holster back by any variety of securing means known to one skilled in the art, including, but not limited to, stitching, gluing, taping, or combinations thereof.

The holster back 14 may comprise a post 26, shown clearly in FIG. 3. This post may be configured to provide the holster back with a substantially rigid, yet flexible support to allow the holster back to adjust under tension to a variety of positions. More particularly, the substantially rigid, yet flexible support provided by the post may be sufficient to allow the post and the holster back to flex under tension. For example, when the holster is releasably secured to an article of clothing of a user who assumes a sitting position, thereby placing tension on the holster, the post and the holster back may flex to allow the user to sit comfortably, while preventing or minimizing spilling of the beverage. In accordance with one exemplary embodiment, the post of the holster back may comprise a concave/convex configuration. Such a configuration may provide greater rigidity to the post to prevent substantial bending along a longitudinal axis of the post. Further, in accordance with another exemplary embodiment, the post may comprise a configuration like that of a metal tape measure, having a substantially rigid, yet flexible, concave/convex configuration. In one exemplary embodiment, the post may be configured of metal or plastic and may comprise one of any various degrees of rigidity ranging from inflexible to flexible under a pre-defined amount of tension, but resilient to original form. The post also may be secured to an exterior surface of the holster back or may be enclosed within the material forming the holster back.

In another exemplary embodiment, shown in FIG. 3, the post 26 may comprise a length of no more than about a half of a length of the holster back 14 and is positioned substantially at a top portion of the holster back 14. Alternatively, in another exemplary embodiment, the post 26 may comprise more than about a half of a length, up to about the entire length, of the holster back 14. Thereby, the post provides rigidity to the holster back to ensure that the beverage container holder suspends substantially perpendicularly over a ground surface.

In another exemplary embodiment, the holster back 14, with or without the post 26, may be configured to fold down at about the half of the length of the holster back 14 such that the holster back 14 may form a handle 28 for the beverage container holder 12, as shown in FIG. 4. As such, the holster may be utilized as an insulated beverage mug having a handle. Further, the ability of the holster back to fold down advances the collapsibility of the holster 10 such that the holster 10 may compactly fold and may be easily stored or placed in a pocket of the user's clothing.

With respect to the insulated beverage mug embodiment shown in FIG. 4, a bottom 30 of the beverage container holder 12 may comprise a coupling to which the fastener 16 of the holster 10 may be configured to releasably secure to when the holster back 14 folds down to form the handle 28 for the beverage container holder 12. Additionally, or alternatively, a bottom portion of the holster back may comprise a coupling to which the fastener of the holster may be configured to releasably secure to when the holster back folds down to form the handle for the beverage container holder. The coupling of the beverage container holder or of the holster back, or both, may be one or more of any variety of couplings such as, but not limited to, a hook and loop fastener, such as a Velcro® strap, a tie, a snap, a button, a clip, a belt clip, a clasp, a clamp, a sleeve, or other fastener, or a combination thereof.

As mentioned above, the holster also generally comprises a fastener. This fastener 16, shown in FIGS. 1-4, may be configured to support the holster back 14 and to releasably secure the holster 10 to a variety of support objects capable of supporting the holster 10 and at least one beverage container 18 held by the holster 10. The fastener may be one or more of any variety of fasteners such as, but not limited to, a hook and loop fastener, such as a Velcro® strap, a knob, a tie, a snap, a button, a clip, a belt clip, a clasp, a clamp, a sleeve, or other fastener, or a combination thereof. The support object to which the fastener may releasably secure to may be one or more of any variety of objects, such as, but not limited to, a belt, a belt loop, a pocket, or other portion of an article of clothing. Thereby, when the fastener is releasably secured to a support object, a user of the holster may enjoy the convenience of keeping a beverage in an easily accessible location, such as, but not limited to, suspending in the holster from the user's belt or pocket, while freeing up the user's hands for other purposes.

In another exemplary embodiment, the holster 10 may further comprise a swivel mount 34, as shown in FIGS. 3 and 4. The swivel mount 34 may be configured to rotatably couple the fastener 16 to the holster back 14 such that when the holster 10 is releasably secured by the fastener 16 to a support object, the holster back 14 and the beverage container holder 12 may maintain a position substantially perpendicular to a ground surface when the support object and the fastener releasably secured thereto change positions with respect to the ground surface due to a user's movements. For example, when a holster is releasably secured to a belt of a user and the user bends down, the belt and the fastener may rotate parallel to the ground. Should the holster back and the beverage container holder, and the beverage container held therein, rotate with the fastener, then the beverage may spill from the container. The swivel mount minimizes this rotation of the holster back and the beverage container holder by permitting the holster back to rotate about its coupling with the fastener such that the fastener may rotate with a user's movements, but the remainder of the holster's motion is minimized. As such, the beverage container holder, and the beverage container held therein, maintain their position substantially perpendicular to the ground, thereby keeping the beverage from spilling.

Further, in another exemplary embodiment, the swivel mount 34 may extend from the holster back 14, as shown in FIG. 4. This extension of the swivel mount 34 may be used to secure the holster 10 to a belt clip worn by the user. FIGS. 5 and 6 depict an example of a belt clip 36 configured to releasably secure the holster 10 to an article of clothing of the user. The belt clip 36, shown in FIG. 5, may be configured as a clamp that, when squeezed at a hinged end, may open and close such that the clip 36 may open to go over or around a belt, a belt loop, pocket, or pants, and close thereon. Thereby, the clip 36 may be releasably secured to the clothing of the user. Consequently, the belt clip 36 may allow the user to easily secure and remove the holster and/or the belt clip from the user's clothing. Various other belt clips known in the art may be utilized to secure the holster to an article of clothing of a user in a same or similar manner as described herein.

In another exemplary embodiment, shown in FIG. 6, the holster 10 may comprise a belt clip 36 configured to releasably secure the holster 10 to an article of clothing. The holster 10 may also be releasably secured to the belt clip 36. More particularly, the extension of the swivel mount 34 may slide into a slot 38 of the clip 36 from the top of the clip 36 down. The belt clip 36 may comprise a button 40 that, when depressed by a user, cause one or more locking mechanisms 44 to recess into the body 42 of the clip 36. Thereby, the extension of the swivel mount 34 may slide past the locking mechanisms 44 and into slot 38. Once properly positioned within the slot 38, the extension of the swivel mount 34 may releasably lock into place in the clip 36. While locked in place by the slot 38 and the locking mechanisms 44, the swivel mount 34 may continue to rotate with respect to the clip 36 when necessary, as described herein. The extension of the swivel mount 34 may be released from its locked position in the clip 36 and removed from the slot 38 when the user depresses the button 40 on the clip 36 and lifts the holster 10 out from the clip 36.

The foregoing description of the various embodiments has been presented for the purposes of illustration and description. It is not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the inventions to the precise forms disclosed. Many alternatives, modifications, and variations will be apparent to those skilled in the art of the above teaching. Other embodiments will be apparent or relatively easily developed by those of ordinary skill in the art. Moreover, although multiple inventive aspects and features have been described, it should be noted that these aspects and features need not be utilized in combination in any particular embodiment. Accordingly, this invention is intended to embrace all alternatives, modifications, combinations, and variations.

It is noted that recitations herein of a component of the present invention being “configured” to embody a particular property, function in a particular manner, etc., are structural recitations, as opposed to recitations of intended use. More specifically, the references herein to the manner in which a component is “configured” denotes an existing physical condition of the component and, as such, is to be taken as a definite recitation of the structural characteristics of the component.

It is noted that terms like “generally,” “commonly,” and “typically” are not utilized herein to limit the scope of the claimed invention or to imply that certain features are critical, essential, or even important to the structure or function of the claimed invention. Rather, these terms are merely intended to highlight alternative or additional features that may or may not be utilized in a particular embodiment of the present invention.





 
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