Title:
Support for Hoses and Welding Cable
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A device for supporting a long and heavy hose, such as a fire or gardening hose, or a welding cable that is held by hand for long periods of time is disclosed. The support device holds the hose or cable around the user's waist such that it can be easily maneuvered as required, and significantly reduces the stress load applied to the user's hand, wrist or arm. The device is a sling that is worn diagonally across the user's body comprising a strap attached to a shoulder pad. The device wraps onto the hose or cable by means of a “cow hitch” knot allowing easy adjustment and positioning of the cable or hose to perform its function. In a second embodiment of the present invention, the device is adapted for supporting compression-sensitive hoses.



Inventors:
Krause, Wade J. (De Pere, WI, US)
Application Number:
11/829175
Publication Date:
01/29/2009
Filing Date:
07/27/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A41F15/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
VANTERPOOL, LESTER L
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
STEVEN H GREENFIELD (Sycamore, IL, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A device comprising a strap and a shoulder pad, said strap having a first end and a second end, said shoulder pad having a first end and a second end, said first end of said strap is coupled to the first end of said shoulder pad and said second end of said strap is coupled to said second end of the shoulder pad, thereby forming a closed loop, said loop having a first end at the shoulder pad and a second end at the opposite side of the shoulder pad in the loop.

2. The device of claim 1, wherein the device is used for supporting a cylindrical object near waist level.

3. The device of claim 1, wherein the device is worn diagonally across the user's body.

4. The device of claim 1, wherein said loop wraps and cinches around a cylindrical object by forming a cow hitch knot at the second end of said loop.

5. The device of claim 1, wherein the first end of the strap is permanently coupled to the first end of the shoulder strap using two or more rivets.

6. The device of claim 1, wherein the first end of the strap is permanently sewn onto the first end of the shoulder strap.

7. The device of claim 1, wherein the second end of the strap is temporarily and removably attached to the second end of the shoulder strap by two or more snap fasteners.

8. The device of claim 1, wherein the material the strap is made of comprises leather.

9. The device of claim 1, wherein the material the shoulder pad is made of comprises leather.

10. The device of claim 4, in which the cylindrical object is a welding cable.

11. The device of claim 4, in which the cylindrical object is a garden hose.

12. The device of claim 4, in which the cylindrical object is a fire hose.

13. A device comprising an intermediary strap, said intermediary strap being loosely wrapped around a hose and secured by one or more snap fasteners, said device also comprising the loop of claim 1, wherein said loop wraps and cinches around said intermediary strap by forming a cow hitch knot at the second end of said loop.

14. The device of claim 13, wherein said device is used for supporting a hose.

15. The device of claim 14, wherein the hose is compression sensitive.

16. The device of claim 13, wherein said device is used for supporting a welding cable.

17. The support device of claim 13, wherein the material the intermediary strap is made of comprises leather.

Description:

RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims priority from provisional application No. 60/893,470 filed on Mar. 7, 2007.

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

Not applicable.

REFERENCE TO SEQUENCE LISTING, A TABLE, OR A COMPUTER PROGRAM LISTING COMPACT DISC APPENDIX

Not Applicable.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a device for holding, supporting, and carrying welding cables and for holding, supporting and carrying hoses, for example gardening and fire hoses.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Welding cable support is an industry-wide problem. Welders must perform welding work often in hard to reach places while holding and operating a relatively thick and heavy welding cable for many hours. Frequently, long welding cables are required to reach the objects requiring welding depending on their location and the ease of access to them. To provide support for the cable, the current industry practice is to tie the cable to a nearby solid and stationary support, such as a beam, that leaves a sufficient length for the welder to maneuver and move the cable from one welding spot to another. This support method, however, still leaves a cable length ranging from about 5′ to as much as 10′ and weighing as much as 25 lbs that must be supported by the welder's hand, wrist and arm. This can cause substantial strain on the welder's wrist, which may lead to health issues such as carpal tunnel or arthritis.

The present invention addresses this issue by providing a simple and ergonomically correct device in the form of a sling for supporting the cable close to the user's body. This reduces the length of cable supported by the user's wrist, and affords the user much greater mobility by eliminating the need to retie the cable when changing welding locations.

One prior art reference patent was found wherein a device provides support to a welding cable. U.S. Pat. No. 5,050,786 discloses a device attachable to a person's belt to partially support the weight of a flexible cable (or cables) extending between a welding machine and a welding tool (torch or electrode holder) held in the person's hand. Most of the cable weight is transferred from the person's hand to his belt, thereby enabling him to more efficiently perform the welding operation, with greater assurance of good welds, and with lesser physical strain on the person's hand and arm.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,007,605 is directed to an apparatus for suspending hoses or cables which consists of an elongate support having a support surface in the shape of an arch with a vertex, depending haunches and intrados. A hose or cable may be supported upon the vertex and haunches of the arch. At least one strap is secured transversely to the support. Loops or rings are provided for attaching the strap to a suspension line.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,075,933 describes a strap type retainer with loop and hook material on opposite sides which can be used to store cords and other devices which has a pair of welds at one end adjacent a ring such that one end of a cord can be attached by a flap below the ring.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,964,434 teaches a fireproof cable loop forming strap of substantial width that has pockets at each end and may have one intermediate pocket to receive front and rear spreader bars which project beyond the lateral edges of the strap. The projecting ends of the bars are configured to be received in hook tabs projecting from the face of a hanger plate or yoke. The rear spreader bar interfits with the plate or yoke and is preassembled therewith so it cannot be removed. The fireproof strap may be formed of fireproof cloth and has folded and sewn lateral edges in addition to the pockets. The hanger plate or yoke may be mounted directly to a variety of structures or surfaces. With an angle flange and intermediate fasteners the hanger may be secured to a wide variety of structures.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,762,257 refers to a hose handler device to enable a fireman to carry a firehose without use of his hands consists of a detachable chest belt further supported by a pair of shoulder straps. One or more quick-release latches are attached to the chest belt in the regions between the attachments points for the shoulder straps, to which a lanyard supporting a firehose can be readily attached or detached.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is the object of the present invention to provide a simple and inexpensive support for welding cables, fire hoses, and garden hoses. It is further the object of this invention is to provide a device that allows good mobility and comfort while carrying welding cables and hoses without placing undue stress on the hand, the arm or the wrist.

The present invention comprises a strap having a length, width and thickness, having an inside and an outside, and having two ends: a first end and a second end. The preferred material of construction for the strap is leather. Other materials, including fabric, plastic, nonwovens, flame resistant fibers, and other synthetic materials also fall under the scope of this invention, however. The length of the strap can range from about 48″ to about 72″ depending on the size of the welder or hose carrier, the width can range from about 0.5″ to about 2.5″, and the thickness can range from about ⅛″ to about ¼″. The present invention also comprises a shoulder pad having a length, a width and a thickness, having a top side and a bottom side, and having two ends lengthwise: a first end and a second end. The length of the shoulder pad ranges from about 3″ to about 11″, the width ranges from about 2″ to about 5″, and the thickness from about 0.1″ to about 1.5″. In the preferred embodiment, the shoulder pad comprises of one layer made of leather. Alternatively, the shoulder pad is made of two layers, a top layer and a bottom layer. The top layer is made of leather, while the bottom is made of a soft material designed to cushion the weight carried on the welder's or fireman's shoulders. The material is preferably a soft and bulky fabric. The bottom side is attached to the top side by sewing or riveting.

The first end of the strap is permanently coupled to the first end of the shoulder pad. The preferred coupling of said first end of the strap to said first end of the shoulder pad is accomplished by means of two or more rivets. However, other means of coupling also fall within the scope of this invention, including stapling and sewing with a heavy thread. The second end of the strap is temporarily and removably attached to the second end of the shoulder pad. The preferred means of attachment of the second strap end to the second shoulder pad end are two snap fasteners. However, other attachment means are within the scope of this invention including Velcro. The use of more than two snap fasteners also falls within the scope of this invention. The inside of the second end of the strap comprises a series of two or more male snap fasteners starting from about half an inch from the edge and spaced about half an inch further in. The top of the second end of the shoulder strap comprises two or more female snap fasteners starting about half an inch from the edge and spaced about half an inch apart, so to match the spacing of the corresponding male snap fasteners on the second end of the strap. The multitude of male fasteners on top of the second end of the strap allows adjusting the fit of the sling to the user's body.

Attaching the second end of the strap to the second end of the shoulder pad forms a continuous sling-like loop having a first end at the shoulder pad and a second end opposite to the first end. The support of a welding cable or a gardening hose is accomplished by placing the loop under the cable or hose at about half way between the first end and second end, then inserting the shoulder pad at the first end through the loop of the second end, and pulling the shoulder pad such that the strap wraps around the welding cable or gardening hose in a knot. This type of knot is known in the art as a “cow hitch”. The sling-like loop is worn diagonally across the user's body by placing the user's head through the loop with the shoulder pad resting on the shoulder opposite the side next to which the cable or hose is supported and carried. With this sling configuration, most the cable or hose weight is supported by one's body, while the stress experienced by the arm, wrist and hand is due to only the short section needed to do the job, e.g., welding or spraying, and is therefore fairly minimal. In fact, the user can rest his or her arm on the part of the cable wrapped in the sling for additional support to relieve any stress that might develop on the arm, wrist or hand. By contrast, the configuration of the device disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 5,050,786 provides support for the welding cable around the belt area, leaving a length of cable that is unsupported and without the provision to rest the arm in the course of performing a lengthy welding job.

Another advantage of supporting the welding cable or hose in this manner is ease of maneuverability. The cable or hose are tightly cinched, yet it is fairly easy to pull a length of cable or hose forward or backward, or angle the cable or hose up or down as needed, all the while keeping the load of the cable off the wrist. Yet another advantage of this support configuration is the movement flexibility and ease of adapting it to a left handed or right handed user. Depending on the cable, job configuration, and user's preference, the shoulder strap may be placed on either shoulder and be accessible to both left and right hands. In fact, the user may be able, in some circumstances, to switch hands to manipulate the hose or cable in order to perform the required functions.

In the process of supporting the hose, the “cow hitch” knot applies some degree of compression to the hose. If this compression restricts the flow inside the hose, a second support embodiment may be used. In this situation, an intermediary strap is loosely wrapped around the hose. The intermediary strap is preferably made of leather; however other materials including fabric and plastic are within the scope of this embodiment. The intermediary strap closes around the hose using one or more snap fasteners. The sling-like loop device comprising of the strap and shoulder pad fastens onto the intermediary strap using a “cow hitch” knot allowing the user to wear the sling-like device diagonally across his body as before. With this configuration, the “cow hitch” knot does not directly exert pressure onto the hose.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a view of the preferred embodiment of the invention showing the sling-like loop device wrapped around a cylindrical object by a “cow hitch” knot.

FIG. 2 is view of the preferred embodiment of the sling-like loop device as worn by a user.

FIG. 3 is a top perspective of the shoulder pad showing the ends of the strap attached to the pad.

FIG. 4 is a representation of the sling-like loop device supporting the cylindrical object through an intermediary strap for use with compression sensitive cables or hoses.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Referring to FIG. 1, strap (2) is permanently attached to shoulder pad (1) at the first end of the strap (2) and the first end of the shoulder pad (1) using two rivets (4). The second end of the strap (2) is temporarily and removably attached to the second end of the shoulder pad (1) by two snap fasteners (5). The second end of the loop (7) is attached to the cylindrical object (3) requiring support using a “cow hitch” knot.

FIG. 2 shows the sling-like loop device worn diagonally across the user's body having strap (2) attached to shoulder pad (1). The device wraps around cylindrical object (3) located at the user's waist in a “cow hitch” knot.

FIG. 3 illustrates the preferred embodiment for attaching strap (2) to shoulder pad (1). The first end of strap (2) is permanently attached by rivets (4) to the first end of shoulder pad (1). The second end of strap (2) is temporarily and removably attached by two snap fasteners (5) to the second end of shoulder pad (1).

Referring to FIG. 4, an intermediary strap (6) wraps around a compression-sensitive hose (9) and secured onto it using a snap fastener (8). The sling-like loop device comprised of a strap (2) and shoulder pad (1) is secured in a “cow hitch” knot to the intermediary strap (6).





 
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