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Publication numberUS3100324 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication date13 Aug 1963
Filing date13 Dec 1961
Priority date13 Dec 1961
Publication numberUS 3100324 A, US 3100324A, US-A-3100324, US3100324 A, US3100324A
InventorsTutino Anita L, Tutino Dominick J
Original AssigneeTutino Anita L, Tutino Dominick J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Clothespin with improved self-storing means
US 3100324 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

1963 D. J. TUTINO ETAL 3,100,324

CLOTHESPIN WITH IMPROVED SELF-STORING MEANS Filed Dec. 15, 1961 Dominick J. Turino Anita L. 7Zlfino INVENTORS Q BY M40162 'i it Etta This invention relates to an improved clothespin.

Briefly, the herein disclosed clothespin is characterized by a median body portion having depending resilient line straddling clothes clamping and retaining legs or fingers, manually regulatable binding and locking means for the fingers, and unique self-storing means for suspending and retaining the clothespin on the line, the latter means located at the upper end of the body portion of the clothespin.

One object of the invention is to provide a simple easy-to-use one-piece clothespin preferably, but not necessarily, constructed from a suitable plastic material which is strong and durable and which lends itself to reliable use on single fixed clothesh'nes or endless double strand lines shiftably suspended on supported sheaves or pulleys.

Another object is to provide effective means to clamp ingly lock or retain the legs or fingers in place in a manner which prevents the clothes from loosening and dropping oil the line, for example when outdoors and subjected to swinging and flapping as when high winds are present. To this end the fingers are provided with a novelly constructed and functioning locking ring.

More specifically, .the outer lengthwise edge portions of the fingers at points of juncture with the median body portion are serrated, the serrations providing anti-slipping teeth. The locking ring encircles the fingers and is selectively and reteutively engageable with the teeth, whereby to apply the desired clamping and retaining result.

A further and highly important objective is to obviate the necessity :of bodily detaching the clothespin and hap hazardly holding it between ones teeth (as is commonly done) or having to drop it in a special storing bag in order to free both hands for reliably handling the clothes. To this end the instant clothespin features practical selfstoring means, more particularly, a specially designed and positioned built-in claw-like clip. This clip is such in construction that by its use, the clothespin may be readily attached and detached from a clothesline. To accomplish this expediently the clip has line embracing jaws and a centralized hole or opening to accommodate the clothesline in a manner to be hereinafter described.

Two embodiments or forms of the clothespin are herein shown, described and claimed, one form being illustrated particularly in FIGS. 1 to 3, inclusive, and the other form in FIGS. 4 to 6, inclusive. It will be noted in this connection that the lower end portions of both embodiments of the clothespin are the same in construction. Therefore, the distinct-ion existing between the stated groups of figures resides in the claw-like self-storing clip or means at the upper end of the body portion.

These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawing forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which:

FIGURE 1 is a view in perspective showing a clothespin constructed in accordance with the invention and illustrating the same cooperable with the upper and lower companion strands or runs of an endless-type pulley-sup ported clothesline and illustrating the featured improvements;

3,100,324 Patented Aug. 13, 1963 2 FIGURE 2 is a view in side elevation of the clothespin shown in" FIGURE 1 removed from the clothesline;

FIGURE 3 is an edge elevation, that is, a view observing FIGURE 2 in a direction from right to left;

FIGURE 4 is a view in perspective showing the modified form of the clothespin with the self-storing means in use;

FIGURE 5 is a view on a larger scale of the clothespin of FIGURE 4 removed from the line and with a portion of the locking ring appearing in section; and

FIGURE 6 is a section on the horizontal line 6-6 of FIGURE 5 looking in the direction of the arrows.

With reference first to FIGURES 1 to 3, inclusive, it will be evident that the improved clothespin is of onepiece construction and that it is preferably fashioned or made from a suitable grade of commercial plastics possessed of prerequisite features :of both rigidity and resileincy. The central part constitutes the body portion A which carries, at the lower end (in the drawing) the usual fork or prong-like means here designated generally by the reference character B. The upper part of the body portion A is provided with the novel self-storing means C. The body portion A is substantially rigid and non-circular in cross-section. The means B comprises a pair of duplicate elongated depending legs which are here referred to as line straddling fingers 8. The lower or free end portions 10 are flared outwardly to expedite the step of piloting the fingers into position. The inner lengthwise edge of either one or both fingers is provided with an arcuate recess or notch 11 for line-accommodation use as shown in FIGURE 1. These fingers diverge downwardly and outwardly and are possessed of the prerequisite degree of resiliency. At the juncture of the upper portions of the fingers and body portion A the outer lengthwise edge portions of the fingers are serrated and these serrations define transverse longitudinally spaced anti-slipping teeth 12. These teeth serve to aptly accommodate the upper peripheral concave surface 14 of the finger embracing or encircling and locking ring 16. The ring is also preferably but not necessarily of plastic material and is of the required diameter to cooperate with the teeth. It is shown in an upper or released position in FIGURES 2 and 3, and of course, when it si bodily shoved down to the position of FIGURE 1 it engages the lower teeth and consequently serves to force the fingers 8 toward each other to obtain a more satisfactory grip. With reference to FIG. 1 the lower strand or run of the endless clothesline is denoted at 18 and the article which is hung over the line is denoted at 20. As is customarily the practice the fingers are simply shoved down over the line and article 20' to clampingly hold the latter in the desired suspended drying position. Where the inherent resiliency of the fingers 8 is such as to grip the article 20 too loosely the clamping ring is brought into play and is forced down and in so doing the fingers or legs are pressed together to bring about a more reliable gripping action. This locking ring feature is especially significant and helpful on windy days when one would desire to guard against displacement of the article 20 by securely clamping it to the line 18. The upper run or strand of the line is denoted at 22 and it is with this that the self-storing means C is cooperable. This means is at the upper end portion of the body part A and is of claw-like form and constitutes a line-attaching and pin storing clip. The centralized hole or opening 24 is sufiiciently large to allow free passage of the line or alternatively free sliding of the means C on the line. The jaws in this embodiment open or extend in a direction at right angles to the lengthwise axis of the overall clothespin, this being a side-opening self-storer. The upper jaw 26 is relatively long, is resilient and has a t 3 rounded or blunt terminal end 28 to facilitate piloting the jaw into place over the line 22. The companion lower relative to the line while jaw 30 is relatively short and the entrance portion thereof has an inclined bevel or surface 32 which further facilitates guiding the clip C into itsintended line-engaging selfstoring position. The numeral fl d esighates a slot a or kerf which-opens through the margin or periphery into the body portion A and increases the resiliency particularly of the upperlong jaw 26.

In the embodiment illustrated in FIGURES 4 to 6, in-

elusive, the construction is fundamentally the same as that already described where, for example, the body portion is denoted at A and the clothes and line clamping means at B and the claw-like self-storing means at C.

Here again the means B, comprises a pair of duplicate spaced-apart downwardly diverging'legs, or fingers 36;

having lower outwardly flaring ends or blunt-diesedterminal portions 38, the inner edge of at least one finger having a line clearance and seating notch 40'. The antislipping teeth on the outer lengthwise edges adjacent the body portion A; are denoted by the numeral '42. and serve to accommodate the locking ring 44, more particularly the inner convex peripheral surface 46 (FIG. Obviously, the mode of applying this part of the pin is the same as that illustrated in FIG. 1 and the locking ringfunctions accordingly. I

With respect now to the line-attaching clip or storing means C it will be noted that the central opening or hole is denoted at 48 and cooperates with the longitudinally extending duplicated jaws S0 to provide a sort of an open-mouthed keyhole-shaped slot which facilitates application and removal of the means C. The free term-inal or tip portions 52 areconvexly rounded and the space between the inner edges of the jaws is outwardly divergent so as to facilitate ready application and removal of the means C. The radial notches or kerfs are denoted at 54 and increase the resilient functioning of the duplicate jaws 50. The manner in which these jaws are applied to a the line 56 is illustrated amply and satisfactorily, it is believed in FIG. 4. The manner in which the clamping ring functions in both forms of the invention is illustrated advantageously in 'FIG. 6. It will be further noted that the marginal :edges of all of the line contacting and clothes contacting surfaces are chamfered or beveled aslat 58 to minimize chafing of the clothesline especially if it be of cord or rope.

' In both forms of the invention it will be evident that A to the clothespin or alternativelythe clothespin shiftable still in its line-attached selfstoring position. j e

The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention tethecxagt construct-ion and operation shown and described, andECcordinglyall suitable ,modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention as claimed.

What is claimed as new is as follows:

1. A clothespin comprising a vertically elongated body consisting of a one-piece unitary element having a solid central part 'togetherwith a lowerresilient bifurcated fining at their inner sides a downwardly divergent and smooth-surfaced opening slot therebetween, said legs being sufficiently spacedand haying sufiicient inherent resiliency for wedgingly and yieldingly' clamping a clothesline therebetween, a resiliency regulating memberernbracing the upper portion of said leg and limiting outward flexing of the leg upper portions, means retaining said member in movably adjusted positions upon said leg upper portion for varying the limits of outward flexing of said leg upper portions and thereby varying the resilient gripping action of said legs, said upper portion comprising a pair of jaws defining an opening at their inward extremities for loosely receiving and retaining a second clothesline therein, said jaws having smooth-surfaced inner sides which extend from said opening 'lZQ the outside of said body and are outwardly divergent to provide a guide passage for movement of a clothesline into and out of said opening.

2. The combination of claim 1 wherein at least one of said legs has a single laterally extending recess in its inner side disposed below said regulating member for engaging a clothesline with clothes thereon whereby to oppose slipping of said gripping portion upon a clothesline.

3. The combination of claim 1 wherein said central portion has a slit therein adjacent at least one of said bifurcated and slotted portions for increasing the resiliency of the latter.

when the clothing is placed on the line the clothespin is pushed down in a manner to press the jaws together to assume the so-called locking position. The anti-slipping teeth coacting with the ring provide the desired locking action. As will be evident from the showing in FIG. 1

this results in keeping the clothing or other articles from accidentally loosening onthe clothesline at any time, especially during the presence of heavy winds. Although the duplicate jaw construction in the means C is aptly and satisfactorilyrusable it will be evident that the side opening construction as shown at C, for example, in FIG. 2 affords the user an easier means of applying the clip to the line. With this arrangement the .user has merely to place the upper jaw on the line and press inward. It will be further evident in FIG. 2 that by squeezing the legs 8 together the bottom jaw 30 is pulled down while simultaneously the upper jaw is forced up when removing the clothespin from the line. This novel leverage action is a significant feature of the invention. It follows that the overall clothespin being of moldable 4. The combination of claim l'wherein said adjusting means comprises a plurality of longitudinally spaced notches on the outer faces of said leg upper portions with which said regulating member is selectively engageable and seated.

5. The combination of claim 1 wherein said opening has a smoothly curving interior surface and is of sufficient size to loosely receive and slide readily upon said second clothesline.

6. The combination of claim 1 wherein said jaws and the slot of said upper portion extend transversely of the vertical axis of the body, one of sa d jaws projecting laterally beyond the adjacent side of the clothespin to provide a means for facilitating the passage of a clothesline 1, between said jaws.

plastic one-piece construction is simple and practical, the

lower pant functioning to retain the clothes on the clothes line and the upper part constituting self-storing means, there being no restriction to the' cl-othesline when in the storing position inasmuch as the line is allowed to move freely through the opening through which it extends. Therefore, the line may be said to be movable relative 7. The combination of claim 1 wherein said jaws and the slot of said upper portion extend transversely of the vertical axis of the body, one of said jaws projecting laterally beyond the adjacent side of the clothespin to provide a means for facilitating the passage of a clothesline between said jaws, said upper portion having a resiliency promoting slit therein opposite said jaws.

8. The combination of claim 1 wherein said legs and jaws are in substantial alignment with each other and wherein said central portion has a slit therein adjacent at least o ne of said portions for increasing the resiliency of the latter.

9. The combination of claim 1 wherein said legs and jaws are in substantial alignment with each other and wherein said central portion has a slit therein adjacent at least one of said portions for increasing the resiliency "of the latter wherein said adjusting means comprises a plurality of longitudinally spaced notches and the faces of said leg upper portions with which said regulating member is selectively engageable and seated.

10. A cl-othespin comprising a body having a central portion together with rectilinear upper and lower portions projecting therefrom, said portions having each a longitudinal slot with inwardly convergent inner surfaces smoothly and continuously tapering throughout their length and defining jaws and legs respectively, said jaws being adapted to loosely receive and retain therein a clothesline for storing said clothespins thereon, said legs being laterally resilient and adapted for receiving and clamping therebetween clothes upon a clothesline, said legs having opposite and outwardly divergent outer surfaces extending from said central portion and terminating midway the length of said legs, at least one of said outer surfaces having throughout its length a series of longitudinally spaced locking recesses, a locking member with an opening therethrough slidably embracing said legs and by which it is selectively engaged and retained in said locking recesses in longitudinally adjusted positions thereby adjustably varying the resilience of said legs.

11. The combination of claim 10 wherein one of said jaws is substantially longer than and overhangs the end of the other jaw whereby to provide a guiding action facilitating the insertion of a clothesline into said jaws.

12. The combination of claim 10 wherein said jaws 6 have their inner surfaces outwardly flaring at their outer ends defining guideways iacilitating the insertion of a clothesline into said jaws, the inner end of said jaw slot communicating with a laterally enlarged clothesline receiving opening by a constricted passage opposing egress of a clothesline from said opening.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 161,138 May-o Mar. 23, 1875 1,513,099 Fox Oct. 28, 1924 2,213,376 Bauer Sept. 3, 1940 2,332,772 Amber Oct. 26, 1943 2,519,987 Wernette Aug. 22, 1950 2,779,076 Schenck Jan. 29, 1957 2,888,725 Cudd June 2, 1959 2,916,113 Lee Dec. 8, 1959 2,931,086 Rose Apr. 5, 1960 2,976,593 Exton Mar. 28, 1961 3,013,654 Hoff Dec. 19, 1961 FOREIGN PATENTS 123,444 Australia Feb. 1, 1945 613,338 Great Britain Nov. 25, 1948 1,025,334 France Jan. 21, 1953 1,043,268 Germany Nov. 13, 1958 1,212,165 France Oct. 19, 1959

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U.S. Classification24/346, D32/61, 24/537, 24/542, 223/85
International ClassificationD06F55/00
Cooperative ClassificationD06F55/00
European ClassificationD06F55/00