Patent application title: Hat retaining device/multi-purpose strap
Roy C. Tremoureux (Dayton, NV, US)
IPC8 Class: AA42B700FI
Class name: Garment supporters and retainers elements belt, strap, or strip constructions
Publication date: 2015-11-19
Patent application number: 20150327620
This device was originated to keep a hat on a head. The device attaches
to the lower edge of a hat, and is easily removed. It uses a simple,
small tensioning device; to secure the strap under the chin of the
wearer. When in use, the strap will not interfere with the activity of
the wearer. This invention has turned out to also be very useful as a
general utility strap to secure, or hang a wide variety of objects.
1. Though there have been other patents for hat retaining devices, this
device uses a unique combination of elements. A cord (line, rope, string,
or strap); two spring clips (such as alligator clips); and two "O" rings
combined together to form a friction tensioning device.
2. The two "O" rings work in conjunction with each other, mated perpendicular to each other. One is vertical in use and the other is horizontal. Both "O" rings are the same size. The horizontal "O" ring passes through the vertical "O" ring, so the horizontal "O" ring is slightly compressed into an oblong shape. The cord then passes down through the horizontal "O" ring, makes a loop, and passes back up through the other side of the horizontal "O" ring.
3. The hat retaining device can be made with a variety of sizes of cord, rope, line, string or strap. The "O" ring size can be changed to accommodate the different materials. The concept of the tensioning device remains the same. This patent shall cover the use of any "O" ring, washer, or other similar shaped object, in this described configuration.
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 A strap to keep headwear on the head of the user that also has other multi-purpose utility. The device is composed of one cord (line, string, strap, rope) with alligator style spring clips attached to the two free ends. The alligator clips attach to the lower edge of the hat just forward of the wearers ears, and the cord passes under the chin of the wearer. There is a tensioning device on the strap where it passes under the chin. The tensioning device is made from two "O" rings mated together perpendicular to each other, one vertical and one horizontal, the horizontal one is slightly compressed to an oval shape as it passes through the vertical "O" ring. The cord passes through the horizontal "O" ring going down one side and back up through it on the other side, forming a loop below the tensioning device. This device offers choice of attachment location on the hat to accommodate various head shapes, and the tensioning device allows for a gentle but secure fit under the chin. The tensioning device is small and light, so it does not interfere with the activities of the wearer.
 The device was designed to keep headwear in place during wind or vigorous activity, but it has proven its value as a general purpose tie down strap. For this purpose it can be made with either limited stretch cord (rope, line, strap, rope) or a stretch type material. The device will be used much the same way as a "Bungee Cord," but will have some advantages with the ability to clip onto items; also with the closed loop, and the tensioning device, the strap can fasten to a variety of places.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 1. While outdoors in windy conditions working at a golf course, the inventor was required to drive a vehicle with no windshield. A visored cap was needed to keep the sun out of the eyes, but the wind was pulling the hat off. The inventor then held the hat on with one hand and was then driving with the other; a dangerous situation. That necessity led to the invention of the device.
 2. If the inventor had a readily available solution, he could have purchased that, and the new device may have never been invented. No such product was available to the knowledge of the inventor.
 3. The inventor was unaware of the prior art in the area of hat retaining devices, so every development in the prototypes was a new invention. The current design was first produced on Apr. 10, 2014, by mid-May 2014; more than 100 have been produced for local sale.
 4. Some of the prior art that has been uncovered during research for the patent are as follows:
 a. Schweizer U.S. Pat. No. 5,144,695--Though a similar device, this inventor did not foresee the advantages of the closed loop at the bottom of the device, and he did not produce the innovative tensioning device made from the two "O" rings.
 b. Bibbee U.S. Pat. No. 5,611,118--This device is similar in utility. The design is obviously different. The attachment to the visor of the hat places the strap in a less advantageous angle for holding the strap under the chin. The strap may appear in the wearer's peripheral vision. This inventor also did not anticipate the innovative design for the tensioning device.
 c. Duffy et. al. U.S. Pat. No. 6,877,168--This one is not very similar, but it really is designed to prevent losing headwear, not keeping it on the head. This device requires modification of the hat, and is not readily transferrable from one hat to another.
 d. The other devices examined compare to this new invention in much the same way as these three. There is some common utility, but the new invention is an innovation with ease of use, light weight, portability, effective in the basic use, and useful in a wide variety of other areas.
 5. After the prototypes were in use, the other uses for the device started to become apparent. These other uses are somewhat unique to this invention, and are not necessarily uses that the other prior art can be used for.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS
 FIG. 1 is a drawing of the whole device.
 FIG. 2 is a detail of the cord passing through the tensioning device.
 FIG. 3 is a detail of the tensioning device plan view with a cross section of the cord passing through it.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
 The following is the process for making the device. The description will use the actual parts that have been in use currently, but other sizes and materials may be substituted and used in the same basic device.
 2--Spring Clips (Alligator style)
 1--20'' Length of 550 Paracord
 2--"O" rings
 2--Pieces of Heat Shrink tubing
 1. Pass the cord through "O" ring B.
 2. Place "O" ring B inside of "O" ring A.
 3. Pass the cord back through the other side of "O" ring B. The cord will form a closed loop on one side of the combined "O" rings, and will leave the two free ends on the other side (see FIG. 2).
 4. Slide the 1 piece of heat shrink tubing loosely over the each of the two free ends of cord.
 5. Place the tubular end of the alligator clips over the free ends of the cord, and crimp them on with pliers
 6. Slide the heat shrink tubing over the crimped area of the alligator clip, and heat to shrink the tubing, to make a nice finished look. The heat shrink tubing should cover the tubular end of the alligator clip and a small portion of the cord.
Patent applications in class Belt, strap, or strip constructions
Patent applications in all subclasses Belt, strap, or strip constructions