Title:
Bill Shaper Device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The bill shaper device, is a unique and improved headwear shaping device that combine the following features in one single unit, making it, compact, curved inwardly towards dome of hat and contains a flat channel for receiving the visor portion of a baseball style hat, imparting a desired flat shape to the cap bill. Indicia may be placed on a top surface of the bill shaper device which covers the cap bill that may bear information, images, messages of the like related to any sports teams, advertising, or any communication or expression desired. The unitary shaped body of the invention is comprised of a lightweight, compact, cost-effective rigid material which also provides for enhanced portability of headwear even while in use.



Inventors:
Quinones, Raul David (North Port, FL, US)
Application Number:
15/204950
Publication Date:
01/12/2017
Filing Date:
07/07/2016
Assignee:
Quinones Raul David
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A42B1/00; A42B1/06
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
MATTER, KRISTEN CLARETTE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Raul David Quinones (North Port, FL, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. The bill shaper device may be instantly applied to a cap bill and worn with a baseball style hat with a cap that has a shapeable bill extending forward and side-to-side with a sufficient distance to shade the forehead and eyes of the wearer.

2. The brim shaper device is comprised of: a straight shaper strip slightly greater in length than the width of a shapeable cap bill.

3. The shaper strip has an exposed upper side and a underside adapted to contact the top surface of a shapeable cap bill and is adapted to make a shapeable cap bill conform to the shape of the straight shaper strip.

4. The bill shaper device of claim 2 wherein the straight shaper strip is fabricated of a semi-rigid material capable of bending outwardly to receive the cap bill inserted between the tab and the shaper strip in a relatively flat configuration of the cap bill, shaping the cap bill.

5. The bill shaper device of claim 3 further comprises at least one pointed protrusion extending from the pair of curved arms and at least one pointed protrusion capable of engaging the cap bill and assisting in retaining the cap bill shaper in place on the cap bill.

6. The bill shaper device of claim 3 wherein the exposed upper-side of the shaper strip is capable of receiving indicia applied thereto.

7. The bill shaper device of claim 4 wherein the upper-side of the shaper strip is capable of receiving at least one decal applied thereto.

8. The bill shaper device which may be instantly applied to a cap bill and worn with the bill shaper device in place on the cap bill.

9. The bill shaper device is comprised of: a flat shaper strip slightly greater in length than a width of a cap bill.

10. The shaper strip having an exposed upper side and a underside capable of contacting a top surface of a cap bill and capable of making the cap bill conform to the shape of the straight shaper strip.

11. The shaper strip having an attached spaced tab at each end distanced from an the underside of the shaper strip by an amount equal to the thickness of the cap bill so that the tab is capable of securing the side edges of the cap bill against the underside of the straight shaper strip with a slight tight compression fit.

12. The shaper strip having on the underside structural ribs capable of providing strength while creating a lighter device.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to hat shaping devices and in particular to a shaper for a visor, brim, or bill of a baseball cap or other hat with a forward extending visor or bill which instantly shapes the bill into the desired flat shape. It may be worn on the hat when the hat is on the head of the wearer, which may bear information and images related to sports teams, advertising, or any other desired information and images. The present invention relates generally to a method and apparatus for preserving an original shape. More particularly, the present invention relates to a method and apparatus for causing and maintaining a definite flat shape in the visor portion of a sports cap while the cap is being used, stored, transported or displayed.

2. Description of the Prior Art

When baseball caps are sold the bill or visor of the cap is relatively flat. This was viewed as unacceptable in terms of functionality or general desirability for wearing. That view has changed. Arching or curving the bill so that the two side edges of the bill are much lower than the center of the bill on a baseball cap is not always the accepted trend. The flat bill is seen not for its functional purpose but as a fashion statement.

While there have been many hat shaping devices and a number of devices for shaping the bill or visor of a baseball cap, none provides an instant means of keeping the shape of a bill of a cap intact upon purchasing the cap, such as at a sporting event, and the capability of wearing the shaping device as an integral part of the cap. The purpose of the bill shaper device is to retain the flat shape of the brim, bill, or visor of a baseball style hat from the time of purchase.

What is needed is an inexpensive construction of a simple band which can be fit adjustably around the cap bill and conform attractively to the bill so that it could be instantly applied to a cap upon purchasing the cap and worn with the cap to instantly preserve the shape of the bill of the cap to a desired flat shape. It should also provide a means to display advertising or a unique message of personal expression or an advertising or sports related message and/or image. Various methods for curving the visor of headwear has been used for some time. Headwear in particular sport team memorabilia such as ball caps is fashionable, practical and comfortable. The most common type of headwear includes sports caps which have visors attached to help block out the sun and which are usually constructed of fabric covered cardboard or plastic. The purpose of a visor is to fashionably protect the face of the wearer from the environment, including rain, wind, and sun by providing a lateral appendage which extends from the head of the wearer. Most headwear manufacturers nowadays produce a flat visor.

The visor is usually constructed of a rigid material to help provide support to allow the visor to extend outward from the face and keep the visor from succumbing to the rain and wind. This purpose is not always achieved.

Another known problem is that while traveling, in an effort to store the headwear inside the luggage, the headwear is often crushed or reshaped when other items are packed on top of the headwear or during the transportation of the luggage.

There is a need for a visor shaping device which is compact, lightweight, easy to use, with a fixed-channel for keeping the shape of the visor during non-use, providing a professional and aesthetic display during storage and transportation, while requiring a reduced material composition and therefore a more economical use of material and space.

Many shaping devices have tried to solve these problems. However, each one of them suffers from one or more of the following disadvantages: curving of the bill, not wearable during use of the hat, unequal distribution of pressure, aesthetically distracting, inconsistent curve, overly complex, non-modular design, massive and non-economic use of material and space.

For the foregoing reasons, there is a need for a device which solves these problems by providing a cost effective, compact, lightweight device with a fixed flat shape for a flat visor, curved inwardly towards the dome of the hat to provide a more ergonomically design.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

An object of the present invention is to provide a cap bill shaping device which conforms attractively to the surface of the bill and keeps the bill in a desired flat shape so that the device may instantly be applied to the cap upon purchase of the cap, maintaining the flat shape of the bill of the cap.

Another object of the present invention is to provide an instantly applied cap bill shaping device which may contain an advertising, sports related, personal message or other indicia which may be associated with the event at the place of purchase, such as a sporting event at a sports stadium. This allows for the purchased cap to have the bill shaper, of the present invention, applied at the place of purchase to instantly protect and preserve the shape of the cap bill and be worn to display the indicia related to the event.

One more object of the present invention is to provide a cap bill shaping device which is securely attached to the cap bill and will not slip off even if worn in a sport event.

An additional object of the present invention is to provide a cap bill shaping device that may be constantly on the bill during use in wearing the cap and during storage when the cap is not being worn so that the cap bill always retains its shape.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a cap bill shaping device that is inexpensive to manufacturer while still adhering effectively to the cap bill while being worn through the provision of protruding points built into the bill shaping device. These may pierce or indent the surface of the cap bill on the underside to permanently engage the cap bill if desired.

A contributory object of the present invention is to provide a cap bill shaping device that is fabricated of a printable material, including molded plastic, different colors, which may be imprinted at any time for any given event.

In brief, a flat rigid strip of molded plastic or other material is provided with a cap bill binding element at each end having a rigid tab spaced away from the cap bill shaper a distance slightly less than the thickness of a cap bill, so that the side edges are inserted between the tabs and the cap brim shaper with a slight compression fit. The tab is embedded in the underside of the cap bill, and the cap bill is retained therein with the top surface of the cap bill conforming to the flat shape of the underside of the cap brim shaper so that the cap bill retains the same flat shape.

The cap bill shaper may be further provided with small pointed protrusions from the cap brim shaper extending into the cap bill to indent or pierce the cap bill, preferably on the underside of the cap bill and thereby prevent the cap bill shaper from slipping off of the cap bill. If the cap bill shaper is wider than the length of the cap bill, the cap bill shaper provides a greater surface for imprinting or branding or impressing or otherwise applying indicia thereto.

An advantage of the present invention is that it provides a means for a user to acquire a cap and instantly apply the cap bill shaper to the cap to wear the cap, having the cap bill conforms to the flat shape of the cap brim shaper.

Another advantage of the present invention is that it provides a means for maintaining the desired straight shape of the cap bill at all times by having the cap brim shaper attached to the cap bill at all times, even while wearing the cap, hanging up the cap, transporting the cap, or any other time.

An additional advantage of the present invention is that it allows the user to make a particular statement with the indicia on the cap bill shaper, whether it is a name or a personal statement, showing team spirit, targeting a particular event or any other desired indicia which may be placed on the cap brim shaper.

One more advantage of the present invention is that the cap brim shaper will not fall off of the cap bill even during use of the cap, such as during in a sporting event, because the cap bill shaper grips the cap bill securely at the edges of the cap bill and also indents or pierces the surface of the cap bill to retain the cap brim shaper securely in place on the cap bill.

It is a specific object of the invention to provide such a device which is comprised of a flat shaped structure attached to and supported by a stabilizing support member. The structure has an opening defined by a first terminal end and a second terminal end spaced apart by a sufficient distance to allow the opening to receive the visor portion of headwear. The opening bisects the flat structure into an upper portion and a lower portion such that the upper and lower portions cause uniform pressure along the perimeter of the visor shaping the visor into the fixed flat shape. In addition, the invention provides an improved method for displaying, transporting, shaping and storing the athletic headwear.

In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, the shaping device is comprised of a unitary shaped body which includes a flat structure connected to and supported by a stabilizing arm. The structure provides a channel to receive the visor portion of athletic headwear.

In accordance with a second aspect of the invention, the invention provides an improved method for displaying the headwear such that a graphical image is affixed along the front face of the shaping device.

In accordance with a third aspect of the invention, the invention provides an improved method for storage of the headwear such that the shaping device provides support and spacing for the headwear while being stored.

In accordance with a fourth aspect of the invention, the invention provides an improved method for transporting the headwear such that the lightweight and compact shaping device maintains the shape of the headwear during transportation. These, and further features and advantages of the invention, may be better understood with reference to the accompanying specification and drawings which illustrate by way of example, the principles of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

These and other details of my invention will be described in connection with the accompanying drawings, which are furnished only by way of illustration and not in limitation of the invention, and in which drawings:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view showing the top of the cap brim shaper of the present invention with the indicia displayed as the cap bill shaper is installed on the cap bill, the cap bill shaper being formed in an elongated strip longer in width than the length of the cap bill;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view showing a frontal view of the cap brim shaper device of FIG. 1 installed on the cap bill;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view showing a underside view of the cap brim shaper device of FIG. 1 installed on the cap bill;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view showing the top of the cap brim shaper device of FIG. 1, with the indicia displayed;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view showing the front of the cap brim shaper device of FIG. 1;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view showing the underside of the cap brim shaper device of FIG. 1.

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

In FIGS. 1-6, a cap brim shaper device, which may be instantly applied to a cap visor, brim, or bill 21 of a baseball type cap 20 or other cap having a front visor, bill and worn with the cap brim shaper device in place on the cap bill, comprises a flat shape strip 10 slightly greater in length than a width of a cap bill 21. The shaper strip has an exposed upper-side which may bear indicia 22 imprinted, embossed, burned or otherwise applied to the upper-side 23 of the bill shaper device and exposed to view. The underside 24 containing structural ribs capable of contacting a top surface of a cap bill 21 and capable of making the cap bill 21 conform to the shape of the flat shape strip 10. An attached spaced tab 25 at each end of the shaper strip is distanced from on the underside 24 of the shaper strip by an amount less than the thickness of the cap bill 21 so that the tab 25 is capable of securing the side edges of the cap bill against the underside of the flat shape strip with a tight compression fit.

At least one pointed protrusion 30 extends from the cap bill shaper device and engages the cap bill 21 to assist in retaining the cap bill shaper 10 in place.

The cap bill shaper device of claim 1 wherein the flat shape strip is fabricated of a semi-rigid material, preferably molded plastic or nylon or rubberized plastic or other material, is capable of bending inwardly to receive the cap bill 21 inserted between the tabs 30 and the shaper strip 10 in a relatively flat configuration of the cap bill.

In FIG. 1 the exposed upper-side of the shaper strip 23 is capable of receiving indicia 22 applied thereto, such as sports related information or personal information or advertisements or any type of imprinted or otherwise applied words and images, including decals.

In FIGS. 1, 2, and 3 the cap brim shaper device 10 has a width greater than the length of the cap bill 21.

It is understood that the preceding description is given merely by way of illustration and not in limitation of the invention and that various modifications may be made thereto without departing from the spirit of the invention as claimed. Having thus described the invention, what is claimed as new and desired to be secured by Letters Patent is as follows: