Title:
Closable Watertight Case
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Closable watertight case for storing accessories, such as car keys, credit cards, etc., which case comprises a bag and a closing means. The bag has an opening, which opening provides access in order to store the accessories in the bag. The bag is furthermore provided with a reinforcing body. The closable watertight case is designed to be used in situations, in which valuable accessories have to be stored in a safe and watertight manner. The closing means is formed by a closure sleeve, which comprises an insertion opening. The bag is inserted at least partly into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve. Characteristic of the invention is the fact that the reinforcing body with the bag can be connected to the closure sleeve by means of a click-fit connection in order to exert a clamping force on the bag in the closed position of the case.



Inventors:
Brouwer, Sven Erik (Rotterdam, NL)
Application Number:
12/514616
Publication Date:
10/29/2009
Filing Date:
11/16/2007
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
53/480, 383/119
International Classes:
B65D33/16; B65B7/02; B65D33/02
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PASCUA, JES F
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
THOMAS | HORSTEMEYER, LLP (ATLANTA, GA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. 1-19. (canceled)

20. Closable watertight case for storing accessories such as car keys, credit cards, etc. which case comprises a bag and a closing means, in which the bag comprises an opening, which opening provides access in order to store accessories in the bag, in which the bag is provided with a reinforcing body, in which the closing means is formed by a closure sleeve, which comprises an insertion opening, in which the insertion opening of the closure sleeve is designed, in a closed position of the case, to exert a clamping force on the reinforcing body together with a part of the bag which are at least partly inserted into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve, wherein the reinforcing body with the bag can be connected to the closure sleeve by means of a click-fit connection in order to exert a clamping force on the bag in the closed position of the case.

21. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the reinforcing body of the bag is provided with at least one gripping element for producing the click-fit connection when the bag is inserted in the closure sleeve.

22. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the reinforcing body extends beyond the outer contour of the bag and in which at least one gripping element is situated outside the outer contour of the bag.

23. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the gripping element has at least two teeth for engaging on the closure sleeve.

24. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the bag, in a closed position of the case, is folded over the reinforcing body.

25. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the bag can be detached from the closure sleeve.

26. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the reinforcing body is provided on the outside of the bag.

27. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the insertion opening of the closure sleeve is dimensionally stable.

28. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the bag is made from a film material.

29. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the bag is formed by stacking at least two film layers, which film layers are attached to one another in a watertight manner at the peripheral edge, and in which a part of the peripheral edge which is not attached forms the opening of the bag.

30. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the bag comprises at least one lip which can be folded over the opening of the bag, in which, in a closed position of the case, the reinforcing body together with the folded-over lip is at least partly inserted into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve.

31. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the insertion opening of the closure sleeve is at least partly narrowed by a vertical edge.

32. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the reinforcing body is provided with a flexible clamping edge, against which, in a closed position of the case, at least a part of the bag bears in order to ensure clamping on the bag.

33. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the closure sleeve comprises a curvature (k) having a radius which is between at least 30 mm and at most 60 mm.

34. Closable watertight case according to claim 1, in which the closure sleeve is connected to an elastic band.

35. Closable watertight case according to claim 1 wherein the closable watertight case comprises part of an assembly, the assembly further including an elastic band, in which the dimensions of a chamber in the elastic band are substantially identical to the dimensions of the outer contour of the closable watertight case.

36. Elastic band for storing objects, such as a closable watertight case, in which the elastic band can be attached to the body of a user, in which the elastic band has a central zone with a chamber, in which the central zone is provided on both sides with fastening parts which are provided with an eye and a strip of hook and loop fastener, wherein the fastening parts are provided with zones of hook and loop fastener in at least two separate locations, in such a manner that when the strip is turned back onto itself through the eye, the strip attaches to the hook and loop fastener in the respective zones.

37. Method for closing a closable watertight case according to claim 1, comprising the following steps: folding a part of the bag over the reinforcing body, in such a manner that the opening of the bag is closed; inserting the folded-over part of the bag with the reinforcing body into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve.

38. Method according to claim 18, in which the part of the bag is folded over a clamping edge before being inserted.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application is the National Stage of International Application no. PCT/NL2007/000286 filed 16 Nov. 2007, which claims the benefit of Netherlands patent application number 1032888 filed 17 Nov. 2006, the contents of all of which are incorporated by reference herein.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a closable watertight case for storing accessories such as car keys, a credit card, a mobile phone or I-pod, etc., which case comprises a bag and a closing means. The bag has an opening, which opening provides access in order to store the accessories in the bag. The bag is furthermore provided with a reinforcing body.

The closable watertight case is designed to be used in situations, in which valuable accessories have to be stored in a safe and watertight manner. Watersports enthusiasts for example need to be able to keep their valuable objects, such as car keys, mobile phones, credit cards, etc. with them while playing sports. It is important that the bag of the case has dimensions which are such that small accessories of this type can be stored safely and that it is sufficiently small not to form an obstruction while playing sports.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

U.S. Pat. No. 2,522,480 discloses a closable watertight case of this type. The known case comprises a bag having a reinforcement around an opening in the bag. The bag can be closed in a watertight manner by folding the opening over a few times, and subsequently sliding the folded-over portion into a sprung clip. This case has the drawback that due to the reinforcement surrounding the opening, the latter is difficult to access. In addition, it is a problem that the closure is not sufficiently reliable. There is a considerable risk that the closure may fail especially due to the user's body movements.

EP-0763337 also discloses a closable watertight case of this type, which is composed of a bag having an opening, in which a closing means is provided around the opening. The closing means comprises two strips, which can be clamped together by means of a bayonet fastening. In order to operate the bayonet fastening, two rotatable knobs are provided on the strips. The bag is clamped between the strips, which results in a watertight closure of the bag.

The known case has the drawback that the closing means of the case is often found to be inconveniently large. The construction of the various components of the closing means is relatively thick.

When a user carries the closable watertight bag with him, the knobs of the closing means protrude a long way and form an obstacle, which can easily get caught behind all kinds of objects.

The user can take the known case with him by means of a cord, which is fixedly connected to the closing means. This way of taking the case along has the drawback that the known case dangles from the user's body and can possibly get caught behind something.

If the known case is worn under clothing, it has the drawback that it is less easily accessible, for example for a watersports enthusiast, to the user if he needs the stored accessories.

It is an object of the present invention to overcome said drawbacks, at least partly, and/or to provide a usable alternative. In particular, it is an object of the invention to provide a case which offers a high degree of wearing comfort and which is furthermore provided with a reliable closure which is easy to operate.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The above object is achieved by a closable watertight case of the present disclosure. In an exemplary embodiment, the present closable watertight case is for storing accessories such as car keys, credit cards, etc. The case comprises a bag and a closing means, in which the bag comprises an opening, which opening provides access in order to store accessories in the bag, and in which the bag is provided with a reinforcing body.

With a case according to the invention, the closing means is formed by a closure sleeve, which comprises an insertion opening. The insertion opening of the closure sleeve is designed, in a closed position of the case, to exert a clamping force on the reinforcing body with a part of the bag which is partly inserted into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve. Characteristic of the invention is the fact that the reinforcing body with the bag can be connected to the closure sleeve by means of a click-fit connection in order to exert a clamping force on the bag in the closed position of the case.

Advantageously, the closure sleeve with insertion opening results in a reliable closing means for the bag which is easy to operate. In order to close the bag in a watertight manner, the bag only has to be inserted into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve together with at least part of the reinforcing body. The closure sleeve exerts a clamping force on the reinforcing body and the bag, which ensures that the bag is watertight.

The reliability of the closure is improved further by the provision of the click-fit connection. As a result of the click-fit connection, the reinforcing body can be fixedly connected to the closure sleeve, at least part of the bag being clamped between the reinforcing body and the closure sleeve in the insertion opening of the closure sleeve. Advantageously, the click-fit connection provides a reliable and simple connection between the bag and the closure sleeve. The presence of the click-fit connection provides an indication to a user of the closable watertight case according to the invention as to whether the case is closed well.

Preferably, the bag is made from a relatively soft film material, such as polyethylene or PVC having a thickness of at most 0.4 mm, so that it can be slightly compressed in order to improve the sealing of the opening of the bag.

In a preferred embodiment, at least one gripping element is provided in order to produce a click-fit connection on the reinforcing body of the bag, which gripping element can engage on the closure sleeve by means of a gripping edge. The gripping element is for example provided with a tooth which engages in a hole in the closure sleeve. Preferably, the gripping element is provided with at least two teeth and, more preferably, three teeth. As a result of at least two teeth being present, the user hears a rattling sound when closing the closing means which gives a clear indication that the click-fit connection has been effected. Due to the rattling sound, the user knows that the case is closed and the risk of the case not being properly closed is minimized according to the invention.

In one embodiment according to the invention, two strip-shaped reinforcing bodies are provided near the opening edge of the bag. The opening of the bag can be closed by pressing the reinforcing bodies against one another. If the reinforcing bodies are subsequently slid into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve, the opening of the bag is closed in such a manner that a watertight closure is obtained.

In a particular embodiment, the bag is provided with a lip, which extends from the opening edge. The lip can be folded over the opening by a user, so that the opening is covered. Then, the bag can be closed in a watertight manner by sliding the bag into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve.

The advantage of this embodiment is that the lip makes it relatively easy to store small accessories, such as jewellery and keys in the small bag. The accessories can first be placed on the lip and then passed through the opening into the bag by holding the bag at an angle.

In a preferred embodiment, the reinforcing body is arranged on the outside of the bag. The bag is for example made of a flexible plastic material which is attached to the reinforcing body by thermal or ultrasonic welding or gluing. The reinforcing body may be attached to the outside of the bag at any location, but is preferably arranged near the opening of the bag.

In a preferred embodiment of the case, the bag has a lip by which the bag is attached to the reinforcing body. Preferably, a slot is provided in the reinforcing body. In order to attach the bag to the reinforcing body, the lip of the bag is folded over by the slot of the reinforcing body and the end of the lip is preferably attached to the bag by means of, for example, a thermal or ultrasonic weld.

In a particular embodiment, the reinforcing body is arranged at a distance of at least one centimetre from the opening edge on the outside of the bag. As a result thereof, it is possible to fold the part of the bag which is between the opening edge and the reinforcing body over the reinforcing body before inserting the bag into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve. By folding a part of the bag over the reinforcing body, additional security is achieved for a reliably watertight closure.

When the folded-over part of the bag is slid into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve, shearing forces are produced on the external surfaces of the bag. The shearing forces pull the bag flat and prevent the bag from creasing or curling up near the opening edge. Thus, the reliability of the watertight closure is increased further.

In a further preferred embodiment according to the invention, the case has a reinforcing body which is provided with a clamping edge. Preferably, the clamping edge is made from a flexible material such as rubber or silicone. In an injection-moulding process, the clamping edge may be moulded on during the production of the reinforcing body. First and foremost, the purpose of the clamping edge is to improve the clamping of the bag between the reinforcing body and the closure sleeve. Furthermore, the clamping edge may offer a user ergonomic grip on the reinforcing body, so that the ease of handling of the case is improved. The clamping edge increases the ease of use, so that the closure of the case can also be operated, for example, using cold or stiff fingers.

Due to the simple closure mechanism, the closing means according to the invention can be designed without protruding parts. Limiting the protruding parts greatly improves the wearing comfort of the closable watertight case according to the invention in particular. The risk of the case becoming caught behind all kinds of objects is greatly reduced.

Preferably, the closure sleeve is made from a dimensionally stable material, such as PC, POM, ABS or PA. Due to the fact that the closure sleeve is preferably made in one piece and does not comprise any moving parts, the closure sleeve will be less susceptible to wear and the risk of failure due to, for example, material fatigue is significantly reduced. Preferably, the insertion opening is closed on all sides and the dimensions of the insertion opening are such that a clamping fit is achieved when a bag with reinforcing body is inserted.

Preferably, the bag can be detached from the closure sleeve. In particular with embodiments in which the closure sleeve is worn on the body by means of an elastic band or a buckle, it is convenient if the bag can be detached from the closure sleeve without the buckle or elastic band having to be removed from the body. This advantageously increases the ease of use of the closable watertight case according to the invention.

In a further preferred embodiment, the closure sleeve has a curvature which corresponds to the curvature of a part of the human body in order to improve the wearing comfort further. The closure sleeve has, for example, a curvature with a radius which is between at least 30 mm and at most 60 mm. Preferably, the closure sleeve has a curvature with a radius which is between at least 40 mm and 50 mm. As a result, the closable watertight case according to the invention is particularly suitable to be worn on the lower arm. The lower arm is a convenient location for wearing the closable watertight case, as the geometry of the lower arm differs relatively little between people with a different build. Compared to, for example, the upper arm or the legs of a person, the lower arms of different people have a relatively similar degree of musculature. Consequently, it is possible to produce one type of closable case which fits many people. If desired, it is possible to produce special versions of the case for men, women and children. Furthermore, it is advantageous to wear the closable case on the lower arm as the case is in the field of vision of the user when it is on the lower arm which gives the user a safe and secure feeling. In addition, it is convenient to wear the closable case on the lower arm as the case hardly impedes the body movements during, for example, skiing or surfing.

The invention also relates to an assembly comprising a closable watertight case according to the present disclosure and an elastic band, in which the dimensions of a chamber in the elastic band are substantially identical to the dimensions of the outer contour of the closable watertight case.

This invention further relates to a method for closing a closable watertight case according to the present disclosure, comprising the steps of: folding a part of the bag over the reinforcing body of the closable watertight case, in such a manner that the opening of the bag is closed; and inserting the folded-over part of the bag with the reinforcing body into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve of the closable watertight case.

Further preferred embodiments are defined in the subclaims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention will be explained in more detail with reference to the attached drawings which illustrate a practical embodiment of the invention, but should not be regarded as limiting and in which:

FIGS. 1A-1B show side views in cross section of different embodiments of a closable watertight case according to the invention;

FIGS. 2A-2D show side views in cross section of different embodiments of a closable watertight case according to the invention, in which a part of a bag is folded over before the case is closed;

FIG. 3A shows a side view in cross section of a closable watertight case with a click-fit connection according to the invention;

FIG. 3B shows a top view of the closable watertight case from FIG. 3A;

FIG. 4A shows various views in projection of a closure sleeve according to the invention;

FIG. 4B shows various views in projection of a reinforcing body according to the invention;

FIG. 4C shows various views in projection of an assembly of the closure sleeve from FIG. 4A with the reinforcing body from FIG. 4B;

FIG. 4D shows various views in projection of an assembly of the closure sleeve from FIG. 4A with the reinforcing body from FIG. 4B and a bag made from film material;

FIG. 5A shows various views in projection of a preferred embodiment of a closure sleeve according to the invention;

FIG. 5B shows various views in projection of a preferred embodiment of a reinforcing body according to the invention;

FIG. 5C shows a longitudinal cross-sectional view of a bag with a fastening lip according to the invention;

FIG. 5D shows various views in projection of an assembly of the closure sleeve from FIG. 5A, the reinforcing body from FIG. 5B and the bag from FIG. 5C;

FIG. 5E shows a perspective view of the assembly from FIG. 5D;

FIG. 6 shows an enlarged view in cross section along the line VI-VI in FIG. 5D;

FIG. 7 shows an enlarged view in cross section along the line VII-VII in FIG. 5D;

FIG. 8A shows a perspective view of an elastic band for wearing the closable watertight case on the body of a user;

FIG. 8B shows a top view of the elastic band from FIG. 8A;

FIG. 9 shows a view of an unfolded elastic band with a chamber for positioning the closable case according to the invention; and

FIGS. 10A and 10B show perspective views of the elastic band from FIG. 9.

For the sake of clarity, identical parts of the closable watertight case are in each case referred to by the same reference numerals in the figures.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

FIG. 1A shows a side view in cross section of a closable watertight case 1 in an embodiment according to the invention. The case 1 comprises a bag 2, in which various accessories can be stored. A strip-shaped reinforcing body 4 is attached to the outside of the bag 2. Preferably, the reinforcing body is strip-shaped and flexible, as illustrated here, so that the bag can readily be held open by manually bending the reinforcing body. Furthermore, the case comprises a closure sleeve 3 with an insertion opening 3a. A part of the bag 2 can be inserted into the insertion opening 3a of the closure sleeve 3, together with the reinforcing body 4, in order to achieve a watertight closure.

A good attachment between the reinforcing body 4 and the bag 2 can be achieved by gluing or welding, but the reinforcing body is preferably welded ultrasonically to the bag 2. More preferably, however, a part of the bag 2, for example in the shape of a lip, is folded over by a slot in the reinforcing body 4 and attached to the bag 2 itself. Advantageously, as a result of folding over the bag 2 by the reinforcing body 4, no connection has to be made between two different kinds of material. Due to the reinforcing body 4, the bag can be slid into the closure sleeve 3, in which curling up or creasing of the bag during insertion is prevented. Preferably, the bag is inserted into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve in the longitudinal direction.

The bag 2 is made from a watertight film material, such as polyethylene or PVC with plasticizers. Preferably, the bag is made from PVC with plasticizers in a ratio of 52 PPH (parts per hundred). The film material has a thickness of at least 0.2 mm and at most 1 mm, preferably the film material has a thickness of approximately 0.4 mm. This makes the film material flexible, which contributes to the wearing comfort. Furthermore, the film material is available in a multitude of colours which makes it possible to produce the case with an attractive appearance.

The bag 2 illustrated is composed of two stacked layers of film material, with the stacked layers being attached to one another along the peripheral edge. At the location of the opening in the bag 2, the peripheral edges of the two layers of film material are not attached to one another. Due to the fact that it is constructed from layers of film material, the bag 2 is flat when empty, which has a positive effect on the wearing comfort.

FIG. 1B shows a side view in cross section of a closable watertight case 1 according to the invention, in which two reinforcing bodies 4 are provided on the outside of the bag 2. Compared to the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 1A, the presence of a second reinforcing body 4 further reduces the risk of the bag 2 curling up or creasing near the opening when being inserted into the closure sleeve 3. As the reinforcing bodies 4 are arranged on the outside, the opening edges of the bag 2 are protected during insertion into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve.

FIG. 2A shows an embodiment of the closable watertight case 1 according to the invention, in which the bag 2 is furthermore provided with a lip 2a. The lip 2a can be folded over the opening of the bag 2, in the direction indicated by the arrow. By folding over the lip 2a, the opening of the bag is closed in a first step. The bag 2 with the folded-over lip 2a is subsequently inserted into the closure sleeve 3.

The advantage of the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 2A is that the lip 2a increases the ease of use of the case by the fact that the storage of accessories in the bag 2 is made simpler. When small accessories, such as earrings or coins have to be stored in the bag 2, these accessories can first be placed on the lip 2a and then passed into the bag in a simple manner by holding the bag 2 at an angle.

FIG. 2B shows a closable watertight case which is of the same design as that in FIG. 1A. However, closing the closable watertight case is effected differently. As FIG. 2B shows, the end of the bag 2, where the reinforcing body 4 is attached near the opening edge of the bag 2, is first folded over once, before the bag 2 is inserted into the closure sleeve 3. By folding over the end of the bag 2, the closure is made more reliable. In addition, curling up or creasing of the bag 2 during insertion of the bag 2 into the closure sleeve 3 is prevented.

FIG. 2C shows a side view in cross section of a variant alternative embodiment of the closable watertight case, as has already been shown in FIG. 2B. The reinforcing body 4 is attached to the outside of the bag 2 in a position which is at least 1 cm from the opening edge of the opening of the bag 2. As a result, a part of the bag 2 near the opening can be folded over the reinforcing body 4, as illustrated in FIG. 2C. As a result of the folding-over, the opening of the bag 2 is closed. By inserting the bag 2 into the insertion opening 3a of the closure sleeve 3, the bag 2 is pressed against the reinforcing body 4. Pressing the bag 2 against the reinforcing body 4 in the insertion opening 3a of the closure sleeve 3 produces a watertight closure of the bag 2.

An advantage of the embodiment as illustrated in FIG. 2C compared to the embodiment as illustrated in FIG. 2B is that, in the case of the embodiment from FIG. 2C, a user is forced to fold the bag over the reinforcing body first before the case can be closed.

FIG. 2D shows an embodiment of the closable watertight case 1, in which the strip-shaped reinforcing body 4 is L-shaped in cross section. The L-shaped reinforcing body 4 increases the reliability of the watertight closure of the bag 2. The reinforcing body 4 has a vertical wall section 4p, around which the bag 2 is situated. In this case, the L-shaped reinforcing body is L-shaped, but in a variant embodiment, it would also be possible to use, for example, a T-shaped reinforcing body. As a result of the vertical wall section 4p in the L-shaped reinforcing body, the folded-over bag 2 has several folding lines 2p, when viewed in cross section. Each of the folding lines 2p contributes favourably to the closure of the bag 2, as a result of which the overall closure improves. During insertion into the closure sleeve, the bag 2 is clamped closed at the location of the vertical wall section 4p. It is advantageous to provide the vertical wall section with a clamping edge made of an elastic material. The clamping edge extends substantially over the entire length of the reinforcing body, so that clamping takes place over substantially the entire width of the bag. As the clamping edge is flexible, it will be slightly compressed when the case is being closed and thus the reliability of the clamping is further improved.

FIG. 3A shows a side view in cross section of an embodiment of the closable watertight case 1, in which the case 1 is provided with a click-fit connection between the bag 2 and the closure sleeve 3. The reinforcing body 4 is provided with gripping elements 4a which comprise a gripping edge 4b which, after the bag 2 has been inserted into the closure sleeve 3, mates with a wall section 3b which is situated in the insertion opening 3a.

FIG. 3B shows a top view of a case 1 as illustrated in FIG. 3A. Dashed lines indicate a key which is stored in the bag 2. The gripping element 4a is outside the contour of the bag 2. After the bag 2 has been inserted into the closure sleeve 3, the two reinforcing bodies 4 are pressed against one another in the insertion opening 3a of the closure sleeve 3. If the case is closed, the gripping element 4a is outside the closure sleeve 3 and is readily accessible for the fingers of a user. If the case 1 is closed, the edge 4b of the gripping element 4a bears against the outer edge 3b of the closure sleeve 3. A user can press the gripping elements 4a together, so that the click-fit connection is released. The user can then easily slide the bag 2 out of the closure sleeve 3.

FIG. 4A shows various views in projection of a preferred embodiment of a closure sleeve 3 of the closable watertight case 1. The closure sleeve 3 has an insertion opening 3a, into which a bag, which is reinforced by a reinforcing body, can be inserted. The insertion opening 3a is in the shape of a slot. At both ends of the slot-shaped insertion opening 3a, the closure sleeve 3 comprises wall sections 3b which can mate with a gripping element in order to produce a click-fit connection.

The closure sleeve 3, as illustrated in FIG. 4A, can mate with a reinforcing body 4, as illustrated in FIG. 4B, so that an assembly is produced which is shown in FIG. 4C.

The reinforcing body 4, as illustrated in FIG. 4B, is strip-shaped and may be produced by means of an injection-moulding process, just like the closure sleeve. The reinforcing body 4 has gripping elements 4a on either end which have a gripping edge 4b which can engage with the wall section 3b of the closure sleeve 3, as illustrated in FIG. 4A. In order to improve the spring action of the gripping element 4a, a slot 4d is provided in the reinforcing body 4 near the gripping element 4a. The slot 4d extends in a direction which is at right angles to the longitudinal direction of the strip-shaped reinforcing body 4. Furthermore, the reinforcing body 4 comprises a pressing member 4c near the gripping element 4a. The pressing member 4c is dimensioned such that it can be operated manually. By pressing the pressing member 4c with a finger, the gripping element 4a is compressed and the click-fit connection between the reinforcing body and the closure sleeve can be released. The pressing member 4c is provided with ridges which provide additional grip for the fingers when the reinforcing body 4 is displaced.

FIG. 4C shows various views of an assembly of the closure sleeve 3 and the reinforcing body 4 from FIGS. 4A and 4B. Cross section ‘Q’ shows that the reinforcing body 4 has been inserted so far into the closure sleeve 3 that a click-fit connection has been produced between the reinforcing body and the closure sleeve. The gripping element 4a engages with the wall section 3b of the closure sleeve 3.

In order to release the bag 2 from the closure sleeve 3, the pressing member 4c has to be pressed and displaced. The pressing member is positioned near the gripping edge 4b and is situated in an opening which is provided in the closure sleeve. At the location of the gripping element 4a, the space in the insertion opening is larger, so that the gripping element has space to spring. By pressing the pressing member 4c, the gripping element springs and the gripping edge 4b comes off the wall section 3b.

As the view in cross section ‘A-A’ shows, a gap is provided between the reinforcing body 4 and the closure sleeve 3 in the insertion opening 3a when the reinforcing body 4 is inserted in the closure sleeve 3, which gap may be filled by the material of the bag 2. The insertion opening 3a is dimensioned in such a manner that a clamping fit is achieved across the entire thickness of the reinforcing body 4 and the wall thickness of the bag. As a result of the clamping action, the bag 2 is closed in a watertight manner.

As FIGS. 4A-4C show, the closable watertight case 1 has a curvature ‘k’ with an outer radius of at most 60 mm, but preferably approximately 50 mm and an inner radius of at least 30 mm, but preferably of approximately 40 mm. The curvature of the case corresponds to the curvature of the human body at the location where the case is to be worn. In this case, the curvature is such that the case is suitable to be worn on the lower arm of a user.

FIG. 4D shows various views in projection of a composite case according to the invention. Cross section A-A shows that the bag 2 made of a film material bears against the reinforcing body 4. When the bag with the reinforcing body is inserted into the insertion opening of the closure sleeve 3, the bag is pressed against the reinforcing body so that a watertight closure is achieved.

FIG. 5A shows various views in projection of a preferred embodiment of a closure sleeve 3 according to the invention. The closure sleeve 3 is provided with a curvature. The curvature is made up of several radii. Due to the curvature which has been produced, the closure sleeve 3 fits the body of a user tightly. The closure sleeve is provided with an insertion opening 3a on the end side for inserting a reinforcing body together with a part of a bag to be closed.

Openings are provided in the outer surface of the closure sleeve 3 for operating a gripping element which may be provided on the reinforcing body. FIG. 5A furthermore shows wall sections 3b, on which a gripping edge or some teeth of a gripping element may engage. The wall sections 3b are inside the insertion opening 3a, so that the outer surface of the closure sleeve 3 remains smooth.

Furthermore, the closure sleeve is provided with hook elements 3c on either side. As a result of the integrated hook elements 3c, the closure sleeve 3 can be hooked into a chamber intended for that purpose in an elastic band. An example of a suitable elastic band is shown in FIG. 9.

FIG. 5B shows various views in projection of a preferred embodiment of a reinforcing body 4 according to the invention. The reinforcing body 4 is strip-shaped and can be inserted into the closure sleeve 3, as illustrated in FIG. 5A. Similar to FIG. 4B, the reinforcing body 4 in the illustrated embodiment is provided with gripping elements 4a on both sides. The gripping elements 4a are provided with pressing members 4c, which remain freely accessible through the openings in the closure sleeve upon insertion into the closure sleeve. The gripping elements are provided with four teeth. Each tooth has a gripping edge 4b which can engage with a corresponding wall section 3b in the closure sleeve. During insertion of the reinforcing body 4 into the closure sleeve 3, the teeth will make a rattling sound over the wall sections 3b, which forms an indication to the user that a reliable closure has been achieved. In an alternative embodiment, a gripping element having one gripping edge may also produce a rattling sound during closure of the case if the closure sleeve is provided with at least two wall sections 3b. Such an embodiment is thus based on a mechanical reversal of the closure principle in the illustrated embodiment.

Furthermore, in the illustrated embodiment, the reinforcing body 4 is provided with a central slot 4e. The slot 4e is at right angles to the slot 4d which has been provided in order to form the gripping element 4a and extends in the longitudinal direction of the strip-shaped reinforcing body. The slot 4e makes it possible to attach a bag in a simple manner.

FIG. 5C shows an embodiment of a bag 2 with a lip 2a. The lip 2a can be used as a fastening lip for attaching the bag 2 to the reinforcing body 4 with slot 4e, as illustrated in FIG. 5B. The fastening lip can easily be looped through the slot 4e, which is illustrated in more detail in FIG. 6.

As FIG. 5B also shows, an end side of the reinforcing body 4, which end side is situated opposite the gripping elements, is provided with a clamping edge 4f. The clamping edge is arranged over a vertical wall section 4p. Preferably, the clamping edge is made of a flexible material, such as rubber or silicone. By pressing on the clamping edge, the reinforcing body can be slid into the insertion opening of the associated closure sleeve. Preferably, the clamping edge is provided with a roughened portion 4f1 in the shape of, for example, local recesses in order to increase the grip on the reinforcing body. The clamping edge 4f may be glued to the reinforcing body or be moulded on during production of the reinforcing body in an injection-moulding process.

FIG. 5C shows a view in longitudinal section of a preferred embodiment of a bag 2 with a fastening lip 2a according to the invention. The bag 2 has been produced by stacking two layers of film which have been attached to one another by thermal or ultrasonic welding. The film layers are attached to one another along the peripheral edge. On the side of the fastening lip, the film layers are not attached to one another and an opening is provided for storing accessories in the bag 2. The width dimension of the fastening lip 2a corresponds to the width of the slot 4e which was illustrated before in FIG. 5B. The longitudinal dimension of the bag 2 is preferably at least 100 mm and at most 150 mm. The width dimension of the bag 2 is preferably at least 50 mm and at most 70 mm. As a result thereof, the bag is sufficiently large for storing keys, coins, mobile phones and other valuable accessories. In addition, a bag of these dimensions is sufficiently small not to impede the body movements of the user. Here, the width dimension of the fastening lip 2a is shown as being constant, but it may also be gradual and reach the width dimension of the bag 2.

FIG. 5D shows various views in projection of an assembly of the closure sleeve from FIG. 5A, the reinforcing body from FIG. 5B and the bag from FIG. 5C. The parts referred to here by reference numerals correspond to the parts described before with reference to FIGS. 5A to 5C. The assembly which forms the closable case is shown in the closed position. By means of the gripping elements, a click-fit connection has been produced between the reinforcing body and the closure sleeve. The bag 2 is partly clamped between the reinforcing body and the closure sleeve in the insertion opening.

As further illustration, FIG. 5E shows a perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the closable case according to the invention.

FIG. 6 shows an enlarged view of the closable case in a closed position in cross section along line VI-VI in FIG. 5D. FIG. 6 shows the bag 2 which is produced by two film layers attached to one another. A part of the bag 2 is clamped inside the insertion opening 3a of the closure sleeve 3. The film layer which bears against the closure sleeve is provided with a lip 2a which is folded over by the slot 4e of the closure sleeve. The returned end of the lip 2a is attached to the lip 2a itself. The opening of the bag 2 is advantageously below the lip 2a of the bag 2. This is advantageous as this prevents the edge of the opening from curling up while the bag is inserted in the closure sleeve. The illustrated arrow indicates the direction of movement for sliding the reinforcing body 4 with the bag 2 in and out. The bag is clamped closed in a zone A. The bag 2 is clamped between an edge of the insertion opening 3a of the closure sleeve 3 and the clamping edge 4f which is provided on the head end of the reinforcing body 4.

FIG. 7 shows an enlarged view in cross section of a closable case in a closed position along the line VII-VII in FIG. 5D. Again, identical parts of the case are provided with reference numerals corresponding to those in previous figures. FIG. 7 clearly shows in particular the gripping element 4a for producing a click-fit connection. The gripping element 4a is provided with a pressing member 4c and has four teeth which move over the wall sections 3b during insertion while producing a rattling sound. When the reinforcing body 4 has been pushed in sufficiently far, the click-fit connection provides a reliable closure of the opening of the bag 2 at the clamping edge 4f.

FIG. 8A shows a perspective view of an embodiment of an elastic band 50, which is designed to be worn on the human body and which is provided with a chamber for storing a closable watertight case according to the invention.

The elastic band is made from multilayered, in this case double-layered Neoprene material with a bottom layer thickness of at least 1 mm and preferably 1.5 mm and a top layer thickness of at least 1 mm and at most 1.5 mm.

The chamber can be produced by folding over a border 51. The border 51 is produced by cutting out part of the top layer of the double-layered material. At the border 51, the top layer is loose from the bottom layer. The border 51 is provided with hook and loop fastener 52 and preferably has at least one press-stud 53. When the border 51 is closed, a chamber is produced, which is indicated by the hatched area. The dimensions of the chamber correspond to the dimensions of the bag of the case according to the invention.

In places, the top layer next to the cut-out part for the border 51 is loose from the bottom layer. By means of stitching, the loose part is delimited and the top layer is attached to the bottom layer. As a result, a space is produced for inserting the closure sleeve. Preferably, the dimensions of the space substantially correspond to the outer contour of the closure sleeve, so that the closure sleeve can be positioned unambiguously.

In order to store the case in the elastic band, the closure sleeve has to be inserted in the space below the top layer first. When the closure sleeve has been inserted sufficiently far into the space, the bag is fitted well below the border on the hatched area in FIG. 8A. By closing the border, the bag is confined in the chamber. A user will not quickly lose the case which is completely underneath the top layer of the multilayered material. In addition, the elastic band offers protection against obstacles which might damage the case.

The chamber in the elastic band has a width of at least 5 cm, but preferably 7 cm, and a length of at most 20 cm, but preferably 13 cm. As a result of these dimensions, the chamber in the elastic band can accommodate a closable watertight case according to the invention completely. Preferably, the dimensions of the chamber substantially correspond with the dimensions of the bag, so that the bag is positioned unambiguously once the border has been closed.

FIG. 8B shows a top view of the elastic band from FIG. 8A. The chamber for storing the case is formed by closing the border 51. The border is provided with a hook and loop fastener on two sides, so that the chamber remains open at the top when the border is closed. When the closable watertight case according to the invention is inside the chamber, the closure sleeve of the case projects outside the hatched area indicating the size of the chamber. In an alternative embodiment, the chamber can be closed completely due to the fact that the third side has also been provided with hook and loop fastener.

FIG. 9 shows a view of an alternative embodiment of the unfolded elastic band 60. The band is composed of two layers of elastic material which have been stitched together. The band has a central zone 61 which is stitched on all sides. A layer of material is provided with an opening, in such a manner that the space between the two layers of material is accessible. The space forms a chamber 62 for the insertion of the closable watertight case according to the invention.

In this particular embodiment, two layers of material are locally stitched together inside the central zone by two seams 63. The seams serve for securing the closure sleeve 3 of the case, the closure sleeve being provided with hook elements. The distance between the seams inside the central zone 61 corresponds to the distance between the hook elements on the closure sleeve. Using the hook elements, the closure sleeve can be secured in the chamber 62 behind the seams 63 within the central zone.

Fastening parts 64 are provided on both sides of the central zone 61. One fastening part is provided with a slotted eye 65 and the opposite fastening part is provided with a loop strip 66 for wearing the elastic band. In order to reduce the risk of losing the band, the band is provided in at least two places with a zone of hook fastener 67.1, 67.2. Preferably, the band is provided with a zone of hook fastener 67.2 on the outside, around the eye. In addition, it is advantageous to also provide the opposite fastening part with a zone 67.1 of hook fastener on the outside of the elastic band. If the band is put on by a user, the loop strip is pulled through the eye and folded back onto itself over the zones of hook fastener. Should the hook and loop fastener strip unexpectedly become detached from one of the locations with hook fastener, then the elastic band will still remain in position and the user will not lose the elastic band. A user may at the most notice that the strip has become detached and press the loop strip against the hook strip again. A further advantage of this method of attachment is that the central zone 61 remains uncovered. As a result, the central zone is very suitable for use as advertising space or the central zone may be provided with an illustration, thus giving the elastic band an attractive appearance.

FIGS. 10A and 10B show perspective views of the elastic band from FIG. 9. The reference numerals in FIGS. 10A and 10B refer to parts which are identical to those of FIG. 9. The elastic band 60 is composed of a multilayered material. The band has a central zone 61 with fastening parts 64 on both sides. In the central zone, the at least two layers of multilayered material are partly separate from one another, so that there is a space between the layers. The space serves as a chamber for storing, for example, a closable watertight case. The chamber is accessible via an opening 62. If desired, the opening may be closable, for example by means of a flap or zip. However, the opening is preferably not closed as the chamber is thus directly accessible when the elastic band has been removed from the body of the user. As the opening of the chamber bears against the body of the user when worn, there is hardly any risk of losing objects from the chamber.

An object, such as a closable watertight case, can be secured in the chamber using the seams 63 which attach the layers of the multilayered material to one another. When the closable watertight case according to the invention has been secured inside the chamber of the elastic band, the bag can be removed from the closure sleeve by operating the click-fit connection from outside the elastic band. Subsequently, the bag with the reinforcing body can be removed from the chamber via the opening 62. Then, the bag with the reinforcing body can be placed back into the chamber in a simple manner by inserting it into the closure sleeve via the opening 62.

As FIG. 10 also shows, a third zone of hook and loop fastener 67.3 is provided around the eye 65 in the fastening part 64. The third zone 67.3 is situated on the inside of the elastic band and further contributes to a safe and reliable attachment of the elastic band to the body of the user.

In addition to the illustrated embodiments in the figures, many different variants are possible which fall within the scope of protection as defined in the claims. Thus, the closure sleeve may be made of many suitable materials, such as PC, POM, ABS or PA. By using transparent PC, the case may be given an attractive appearance. The bag may be made from many kinds of suitable flexible plastics. The reinforcing bodies may be attached to the bag by means of gluing, by single-use press-studs or by thermal or ultrasonic welding.

In one variant, the reinforcing bodies may also be placed inside a chamber provided on the bag in an interlocking manner. In a further variant, the reinforcing bodies may be incorporated in the bag, for example by making the bag thicker locally.

Furthermore, the elastic band can also be used separately from the closable watertight case or for storing other objects. The elastic band may be incorporated in clothing, such as a wetsuit.

Thus, according to the invention, a closable watertight case is obtained which has a high wearing comfort and is simple to operate. The case is functional and convenient to use and, in addition, has an attractive appearance.