US 3731319 A
A suit for surfing, diving, sailing, marine survival and the like is provided wherein the suit is provided with tight inturned seals at the neck, ankles, and wrists so that it is substantially water tight. An inflater valve is provided so that buoyancy can be given to the suit if this is desired. The suit is made in one piece with a single zipper across the back of the shoulders extending from arm to arm.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [191 ONeill [5 4] COMBINATION DRY AND WET SUIT  Inventor: Jack E. 0 m, 1071-4151 Avenue,
' Santa Cruz, Calif. 95060 22 Filed: Aug. 4, 1971 i 21 Appl. No.: 168,988
52 U.S. (31.; ..2/2.1 R [51 1111.0 ....A62b 17/00, B63c 11/04  Field of Search ..2/2.l R, 2.1 A, 81,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,517,748 8/1950 Williams ..2/82 3,337,876 8/1967 Armstrong ..2/2.l R 1,706,097 3/1929 Aud ..2/2.1 RUX 3,164,840 1/1965 Reynolds ..2/81 X FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 11/1951 France ..2/82 1,133,323 7/1962 Germany 842,768 7/1960- Great Britain... 1,473,129 2/1967 France Primary Exarhiner-Alfred R. Guest Attorney-Carl Hoppe et a1.
57 ABSTRACT 4 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures PAIEN EB 3.731.319
I N VENTOR.
JACK E. O'NEILL PATENTEDHAY 81m SHEU 2 OF 2 "JACK EINVOEWEIILLL r Ii .'5
FIG--3- COMBINATION DRY AND WET SUIT SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Wet suits have had a number of disadvantages. As their name implies, a certain amount of water gets into the wet suit so this initially chills the user. According to the present invention a suit is provided which has inturned tight seals at the neck, ankles, and wrists so that very little, if any, water gets into the suit. With this inturned seals, as later described in detail, pressure inside the suit actually increases the effectiveness of the seals. At the same time, it is not of the cumbersome construction of the dry suit.
In the past suits have been somewhat difficult to put on and required various snap and zipper arrangements. The suit of the present invention is preferably made as a single piece garment with a single zipper across the back of the shoulders extending into both arms. This makes it easy to put the suit on and take if off as well as providing a simple water proof seal. The user requires no help in taking the suit off or putting it on.
Another feature of the present invention is that it incorporates an inflater so that the user can obtain buoyancy merely by blowing a few breaths of air into his suit. This, of course, requires the efficient seals of the suit of .the present invention and adds much to the safety of the suit. Thus, a user can stay afloat for an indefinite length of time. At the same time if one desires to release the air, it is only necessary to give a slight tug at the neck or sleeve or depress valve to let the air out of the suit.
Various other features of the invention will be apparent from the detailed description which follows:
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a rear perspective view of a suit embodying the present invention.
FIG. 2 is an enlarged sectional side view of the suit showing the top portion thereof.
F IG. 3 is a section of the cuff as it is initially put on.
FIG. 4 is a sectional view of the cuff after it has been turned in.
FIG. 5 is a sectional view of a cuff showing the use of an auxiliary band to improve the seal.
FIG. 6 is a perspective view showing the suit in use.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring now to the drawings by reference characters, the suit of the present invention is made of a rubber or rubber-like material which may or may not be reinforced with fabric as is well known to those skilled in the art of making such suits. Preferably the suit is made of a sponge-like thin, rubber material having a smooth outer surface of rubber and an inner surface of fabric. The suit is formed with arm portions 7 and 9, fastened to a body portion 11 and leg portions I3 and 15. The suit can be formed from various pattern pieces as shown. The curved seam 14 is designed in such a matter to make it improbable that a strain will be placed directly on the seam. Also, since all seams are stiff, this curve design allows greater elongation by the fact that when tension is put on a curve seam, there is greater flexibility than if it is a straight seam. The sections are joined by means well known to those skilled in the art such as cementing or sewing or, preferably, a combination of both sewing and cementing.
A feature of the suit of the present invention is the location of the large single zipper. The zipper 7, generally designated 17, extends from a point 19 beyond one shoulder to a point 21 beyond the opposite shoulder. This, as will be later apparent, makes the suit extremely easy to put on and take off.
The outstanding feature of the present suit is the method of sealing at the neck, ankles and wrists and this will be described as applied to the neck seal. The neck seal includes a collar portion generally designated 23. The collar 23 has an upstanding rim 25 which slopes inwardly as is shown in dash lines in FIG. 2 forming a truncated cone. After the suit is put on, the ends of the collar are tucked down inside as at 27. This contributes to the waterproof qualities of the suit since this forces the material in as at 28. Further, if one now pressurizes the suit, the pressure between the folds as at 30 will tend to tighten the collar even more. Thus, pressure inside the suit increases the sealing action.
The cuffs, generally designated 29 terminate in an inwardly turned conical portion 31 as is shown in FIG. 3. After the suit has been put on, the ends are turned in as at 31A in FIG. 4. Thus, the same seal is achieved as is described in conjunction with the neck. Although it is generally not necessary, an elastic band 33 can then be placed over the ends of the turned in cuffs as is shown in FIG. 5.
The ankles 35 are generally the same structure as the cuffs and are therefore not described in detail.
An inflation tube 37 is provided having the usual valve therein and may be provided with a valve cap 39. If it is desired to inflate the suit it is only necessary to bend the tube 37 upwardly as is shown in dot dash lines in FIG. 2 to blow a few breaths into the suit. This is particularly valuable for skin divers and the like who may be some distance from shore and wish to rest in the water. This is an obvious safety feature of the suit.
It is extremely easy to put the suit on or take it off. In order to put the suit on, the feet are naturally inserted in the leg portions first and the suit is then pulled over the heels. The arms are next placed in the suit and finally the head is placed through the neck portion. Now the collar, cuffs, and ankles can be tucked in and the zipper zipped. If it is desired, cuff bands as at 33 can then be placed over the ankles and/or wrists.
From the foregoing it is obvious that a suit has been provided which gives great freedom to the wearer, which is more comfortable than the conventional wet suit and which has a built-in safety feature because of this buoyancy.
1. A combination wet and dry suit adapted to be pressurized, comprising in combination:
a. a suit of a rubberized fabric-like material, said suit having a smooth, truncated conical opening for the neck, said opening including an elongated collar portion extending from the suit for a length substantially longer than the neck of the user, said truncated collar portion being folded and turned inwardly upon itself and extending into the body of the suit whereby the material of the neck is forced in at the fold to make a seal and permitting air'to enter between said intumed portion of the neck said zipper extending across the back of the shoulders and the body of the suit whereby air entering said from beyond one shoulder to beyond the other.
fold, increases the sealing action of the opening. 2. The suit of claim 1 having intumed conical openings at the feet and arms as defined in claim 1.
3. The suit of claim 1 having a single zipper closing,
4. The suit of claim 1 wherein an inflation valve is 5 provided whereby the wearer can blow air into the suit.