Title:
BRACKET FOR SUSPENDING A CELL PHONE EAR PIECE FROM A CAP
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An earpiece bracket that conveniently attaches to a cap worn by a user with length adjustment such that the distance between the cap to the earpiece is adjustable in the bracket. The attachment is pivotable so the bracket may swing the earpiece into and out of its operational position. In use, the earpiece depends in the bracket from the cap into an operational position with the speaker portion of the earpiece urged against the user's ear at the external auditory meatus. The earpiece swings into place during use and away from the ear when not use. The earpiece speaker portion is held against ear at the external auditory meatus under spring bias in the attachment of the bracket to the cap.



Inventors:
Wagemans, Gregory Anthony (Milton, WA, US)
Application Number:
12/504121
Publication Date:
01/21/2010
Filing Date:
07/16/2009
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A42B1/24
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
THEIS, MATTHEW T
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Joseph Z. Ellsworth (Kent, WA, US)
Claims:
Having described the invention, I claim as follows:

1. A bracket for suspending a cell phone ear piece from a user's headgear, comprising a clip adapted to attach to the headgear; an elongate member mounted to the clip near an elongate member first end and adapted to secure an earpiece to an earpiece position in the elongate member at an elongate member second end; wherein the elongate member is adjustable such that with the clip attached to the headgear the earpiece when secured to the elongate member earpiece position may move between a first position over the user's external auditory meatus and a second position spaced apart from the first position away from the user's ear.

2. The bracket of claim 1 wherein the elongate member is mounted pivotably to the clip such that the elongate member may rotate on the clip thereby moving the earpiece in the earpiece position between first and second positions.

3. The bracket of claim 1 wherein the elongate member is curved inward at least a portion of which is resiliently flexible such that in use the earpiece when secured in the elongate member earpiece position is urged under spring bias against the user's ear.

4. The bracket of claim 1 wherein the elongate member is adjustable in length such that the position of the earpiece position relative to the clip is adjustable to facilitate positioning of the earpiece over the external auditory meatus of the user.

5. The bracket of claim 4 wherein the elongate member is slidably mounted to the clip therein providing adjustment of distance between the earpiece and the clip.

6. The bracket of claim 5 wherein the elongate member is mounted to the clip with a friction interface such that the elongate member moves relative to the clip under positive action by the user and otherwise maintains a fixed position during use.

7. The bracket of claim 6 further comprising at least one friction member on a side of the elongate member.

8. The bracket of claim 6 further comprising a friction member on each side of the elongate member.

9. The bracket of claim 8 further comprising a shaft extending from the clip and passing through a slot longitudinal in the elongate member, the shaft being disposed to bind the at least one friction member against the elongate member at a preferred pressure by a securing member on the shaft.

10. The bracket of claim 9 wherein the shaft passes through the at least one friction member and the slot of the elongate member.

11. The bracket of claim 10 further comprising a coil spring through which the shaft passes, the securing member compressing the spring in cooperation with the shaft, the spring maintaining a preferred pressure against the friction member or members.

12. The bracket of claim 11 wherein the clip comprises two opposing members mutually bending from each other at a line of flexure forming a channel, the cap rim being temporarily receivable into the channel under spring bias from the line of flexure binding the cap rim between the opposing members.

13. A bracket for suspending a cell phone ear piece from a user's headgear, comprising a clip adapted to attach to the headgear; an elongate member mounted to the clip near an elongate member first end and adapted to secure an earpiece to an earpiece position in the elongate member at an elongate member second end, wherein the elongate member is curved inward at least a portion of which is resiliently flexible such that in use the earpiece when secured in the elongate member earpiece position is urged under spring bias against the user's ear; wherein the elongate member is adjustable such that with the clip attached to the headgear the earpiece when secured to the elongate member earpiece position may move between a first position over the user's external auditory meatus and a second position spaced apart from the first position away from the user's ear; wherein the clip is mounted pivotably to the clip on a shaft extending from the clip, such that the elongate member may rotate on the clip thereby moving the earpiece in the earpiece position between first and second positions.

14. The bracket of claim 13 wherein the elongate member has a longitudinal slot with the shaft passing therethrough and movable through the slot therein providing adjustment of distance between the clip and the receiver position in the elongate member to facilitate positioning of the earpiece over the external auditory meatus of the user.

15. The bracket of claim 13 further comprising at least one friction member on a side of the elongate member whereby the elongate member is mounted to the clip with a friction interface such that the elongate member moves relative to the clip under positive action by the user and otherwise maintains a fixed position during use.

16. The bracket of claim 15 further comprising a securing member on the shaft, the shaft being disposed to pass through the at least one friction member and the securing member in cooperation with shaft binding the at least one friction member against the elongate member at a preferred pressure.

17. The bracket of claim 1 wherein the clip comprises two opposing members mutually bending from each other at a line of flexure forming a channel, a rim of a headgear being temporarily receivable into the channel under spring bias from the line of flexure binding the cap rim between the opposing members.

18. A bracket for suspending a cell phone ear piece from a user's cap having a rim to which the clip temporarily attaches, comprising a clip comprising two opposing members mutually bending from each other at a line of flexure forming a channel, the cap rim being temporarily receivable into the channel under spring bias from the line of flexure binding the cap rim between the opposing members. an elongate member mounted to the clip near an elongate member first end and adapted to secure an earpiece to an earpiece position in the elongate member at an elongate member second end, wherein the elongate member is curved inward at least a portion of which is resiliently flexible such that in use the earpiece when secured in the elongate member earpiece position is urged under spring bias against the user's ear; wherein the elongate member is adjustable such that with the clip attached to the rim of the cap the earpiece when secured to the elongate member earpiece position may move between a first position over the user's external auditory meatus and a second position spaced apart from the first position away from the user's ear; wherein the elongate member is mounted pivotably to the clip on a shaft extending from the clip, such that the elongate member may rotate on the clip thereby moving the earpiece in the earpiece position between first and second positions.

19. The bracket of claim 1 wherein the elongate member has a longitudinal slot with the shaft passing therethrough and movable through the slot therein providing adjustment of distance between the clip and the receiver position in the elongate member to facilitate positioning of the earpiece over the external auditory meatus of the user.

20. The bracket of claim 1 further comprising at least one friction member on a side of the elongate member whereby the elongate member is mounted to the clip with a friction interface such that the elongate member moves relative to the clip under positive action by the user and otherwise maintains a fixed position during use, wherein the shaft passes through the at least one friction member and in cooperation with the securing member binds the at least one friction member against the elongate member at a preferred pressure, and a coil spring through which the shaft passes, the securing member compressing the spring in cooperation with the shaft, the spring maintaining a preferred pressure against the friction member or members.

Description:

This application is derived from the provisional application filed Jul. 16, 2008 under Ser. No. 61081101 and claims the benefit of that filing date

BACKGROUND

1. Field of the Invention

This invention relates generally to cell phone earpieces and more specifically to a bracket for suspending an earpiece from a cap instead of from an auricle of an ear.

2. Prior Art

Ear pieces that work in coordination with a cell phone are now becoming common, allowing hands free cell phone use, both for convenience and for operation of a vehicle. The operation of the ear piece depends on maintaining placement of the speaker portion of the ear piece at the external auditory meatus so very little volume is required and external noise is minimized. Typically, an ear piece is sold with a mount that has a C-shaped portion that wraps around and behind a user's auricle. The ear piece in the mount is then adjusted with its speaker portion at the acoustic meatus where it is partially held in place by the tragus in combination with the C-shaped portion of the mount.

The ear piece mount is uncomfortable and unsightly. Because it is sometimes offensive to a user, it is often separated from the earpiece and the earpiece is used without the mount, in which case the earpiece is held to the ear only by placing the speaker portion inside the tragus. This is less than a stable mount but still sometimes preferable to using the C-shaped portion of the mount. A mount that is comfortable and still affective is still needed.

It is then an object of the present invention to provide an ear piece mounting bracket that is comfortable to use even for extended periods of time. It is a further object that the bracket be urged to the user's external auditory meatus. It is another object that the bracket hold the ear piece to the external auditory meatus independent of the user's auricle. It is a still further object that the ear piece be conveniently movable away from the auricle and external auditory meatus when not in use so it does not become an irritant to the user and still quickly returned to its operational position when needed for use.

SUMMARY

These objects are obtained in an earpiece bracket that conveniently attaches to a cap worn by a user. The attachment is pivotable so the bracket may swing the earpiece into and out of its operational position. In use, the earpiece depends in the bracket from the cap into an operational position with the speaker portion of the earpiece urged against the user's ear at the external auditory meatus. The earpiece swings into place during use and away from the ear when not use. The earpiece speaker portion is held against ear at the external auditory meatus under spring bias in the attachment of the bracket to the cap. With the earpiece swung temporarily to the external auditory meatus for a brief period of use and then swung back to the cap until it is needed again, the earpiece is comfortable when in use and does not become an irritant to the ear because of its brief periods of contact with the ear.

Persons will have a slightly different manner in regard to where they prefer to wear a cap. Therefore bracket provides a length adjustment such that the distance between the cap to the earpiece is adjustable in the bracket.

The earpiece mounting device can be used with any product designed to provide sound to the ear by adapting the product for mounting to the earpiece mounting device of the present invention as described herein. In referring to an earpiece generally for ease of description, the earpiece is meant to include a wireless telephone earpiece used in association with a cellular phone for hands free operation of the cellular phone, a music player and any similar sound device mountable to the ear for receiving a wireless signal and producing sound to the ear. Use of the term “wireless” is also used for ease and simplicity of description and for all purposes herein should be deemed to include all methods and protocols of transmitting and receiving a data signal without wires. The well-known protocol known as Bluetooth is one such protocol commonly used presently.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

FIG. 1 is an exploded perspective view of the bracket of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the assembled bracket of FIG. 1 with a cap aligned to cover a portion of the assembly.

FIG. 3 is perspective view of the bracket of FIG. 1 partially assembled showing a clip, a friction member on the clip, an elongate member with a slot over the friction member with a spacer within the slot, and a shaft of a bolt extending upward through the clip and continuing through a hole in the friction member and a hole in the spacer.

FIG. 4 is an artistic view of the bracket of FIG. 1 attached to a cap in its operational first position.

FIG. 5 is an artistic view of the bracket of FIG. 1 attached to the cap of FIG. 4, rotated to a non-operational second position alongside the cap.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

The bracket 5 of the present invention for suspending a cell phone earpiece 100 from a user's headgear 102 primarily comprises a clip 10 temporarily attachable to the headgear 102 and an elongate member 12 to which an earpiece 100 may be secured. Typically the headgear 102 is a cap that has a rim 104 to which the clip 10 temporarily attaches. To attach to the headgear 102 the clip 10 comprises two opposing members 14 mutually bending from each other at a line of flexure 16 forming a channel 18 therebetween. The cap rim 104 is then receivable temporarily into the channel 18 under spring bias from the line of flexure 16 that binds the cap rim 104 between the opposing members 14.

The elongate member 12 is mounted pivotably to the clip 10 near an elongate member first end 20 on a bolt 21 extending from the clip 10. The elongate member 12 may thus rotate on the clip 10 thereby moving the earpiece 100 secured in an earpiece position 22 on the elongate member 12 between first and second positions 24, 26. In the first position 24, the earpiece when mounted in the earpiece position 22 is over the external auditor meatus 106 of the user. The elongate member 12 comprises first and second sections 23, 25 curved inward at least a portion of which is resiliently flexible such that the earpiece 100 in the earpiece position 22 is urged under spring bias against the user's ear 108 in use. Clearly, the elongate member 12 may instead comprise an actual curve. In the second position 26, the earpiece 100 is swiveled away from the user's ear 108, which may be conveniently alongside the headgear 102 so as not to interfere with or distract the user.

The earpiece 100 is secured to the earpiece position 22 at an elongate member second end 28. The elongate member second end 28 may comprise a resilient wire form with a pair of legs 30, in which case the earpiece position 22 may be along the legs 30 but is preferably at the end of the legs 32 with the legs 30 grasping the earpiece 100 between them.

The elongate member 12 is also slidably mounted to the clip 10. The bolt 21 passes through a slot 32 longitudinal in the elongate member 12 therein providing adjustment of distance between the clip 10 and the earpiece position 22 in the elongate member 12 to facilitate positioning of the earpiece 100 over the external auditory meatus 106 of the user.

At least one friction member 34 is installed over the bolt 21 on a side 36 of the elongate member 12, and typically over and under the elongate member 12, providing a friction interface between the elongate member 12 and the clip 10.

A nut 38 on the bolt end 40 binds the friction member or members 34 against the elongate member 12 at a preferred pressure as the nut 38 is tightened on the bolt 21. Under the friction provided by the friction members, which may be fiber washers, the elongate member 12 moves relative to the clip 10 under positive action by the user and otherwise maintains a fixed position during use.

A coil spring 42 may be provided through which the bolt 21 passes and which the nut 38 compresses as the nut 38 is tightened to maintain a preferred pressure against the friction member or members 34. For ease of description the shaft that extends from the clip 10 through the spring 42 and the friction member or members 34 is represented by a bolt 21 with the assembly held in place by a nut 38 in cooperation with the bolt 21. The bolt and nut are common and well known parts used for this purpose. However, there are also other parts, such as rivots and pins, etc. that are suitable to perform the same function. A locking nut or a second nut also can be used along with the first nut to prevent the nut from unthreading on a bolt. There are similar other parts that can be used to prevent the nut from unthreading. All of these parts are represented by the use of the term ‘nut’ and for all purposes herein should be deemed included in the use of the term ‘nut.’ For all purposes herein, use of the terms ‘bolt’ and ‘nut’ are for ease of description only and should be deemed to represent all other common and well known parts that perform the same function. For generality, the bolt and similarly functioning parts may be described as a shaft herein and the nut and similarly function parts may be described as a securing member.