US 3648331 A
A covered button comprises a rigid shell having inward teeth and a resilient one-piece plastic shank having a periphery adapted to snap past the teeth and hold the fabric in place. An annular flange on the shank protects the points of the teeth and forms a ledge into which the teeth dig when the cover is subjected to pull-apart forces.
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Description (Le texte OCR peut contenir des erreurs.)
ilnite States Patent Kruger et all.
[ 1 swam  Mar, M, mm
 COVERED BUTTON  Inventors: James B. Kruger, Oxford; Joseph Cooper,
Westport, both of Conn.
 Assignee: Scovill Manufacturing Company, Waterbury, Conn.
 Filed: July 17, 1970  Appl. No.: 55,758
2,643,430 6/1953 Koehl et a1 ..24/163 FC FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 891,245 11/1943 France ..24/113 1R 816,314 10/1951 Germany ..24/113 R 7,151 1894 Great Britain ..24/113 R Primary ExaminerDona1d A. Griffin Attorney-Ballett Hoopes [5 7] ABSTRACT A covered button comprises a rigid shell having inward teeth and a resilient one-piece plastic shank having a periphery adapted to snap past the teeth and hold the fabric in place. An annular flange on the shank protects the points of the teeth and forms a ledge into which the teeth dig when the cover is subjected to pull-apart forces.
6 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures covsnso BUTTON This invention relates to a covered button. More specifically, the invention relates to a two-piece covered button which is remarkable for its simplicity, strength, and ease of assembly.
In the prior art, there are a large number of patents dealing with covered buttons, one of which is U.S. Pat. No. 25 13,1 82. This patent discloses a metal cover having inward teeth adapted to engage the fabric cover and a metal back having an upset rim which is pressed into the opening at the rear of the button to clamp the fabric against the teeth of the cover.
The structures in the prior art have been extremely difficult to assemble. Many have required use of special gripping devices or hammers and especially when used with heavy fabric have been virtually impossible to assemble.
The present invention presents a rigid cover or shell and a plastic shank or back member which, virtually irrespective of the thickness of the fabric cover, is readily snapped into and engaged by the mouth of the cover opening to hold securely the fabric on the cover. The assembly requires no tools and a minimum of pressure. Further, the structure is such that any pull-apart forces tend only to make the engagement of the parts more secure. The structure is extremely simple to produce.
Further objects of the invention will be apparent from the specification including the drawings describing and showing a non-limiting form of the invention. In the drawings:
FIG. I is a center line sectional view showing the assembled covered button including the fabric;
FIG. 2 is a partially assembled button embodying the invention and showing the shank about to be applied to the cover member;
FIG. 3 shows the shank partly inserted into the cover member;
FIG. t shows the assembled covered button being acted on by a pulling force showing how the engagement of the shank and the cover is enhanced;
FIG. 5 is a bottom view of a covered button embodying the invention; and
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary enlarged sectional view taken on the line 6-6 of FIG. 6 and showing the gripping action of the teeth on the shank.
A covered button assembly embodying the invention in completed form is shown in FIG. I and generally designated It). It comprises a dome-shaped upper cover member 12 or shell and a molded plastic shank 14. As shown, the cover member I2 may have a peripheral skirt 16 from which incline upwardly and inwardly a number of peripheral teeth 18.
The shank M is of molded plastic and is generally mushroom'shaped, its upper portion 20 having an outline similar to the curvature of the upper cover or shell 12. The periphery 22 of the shank extends outward into the space between the teeth and the peripheral skirt I6. Extending downwardly and spaced inwardly from the periphery 22 is an annular flange 24 which together with the periphery 22 defines an annular ledge 26 against which the teeth I8 engage. The flange 24, extending below the level of the teeth, serves as a guard for the points of the teeth 18.
Centrally of the shank is disposed a downward hub 23 which may be hollow and which may have its sides notched away to provide a thread-receiving opening 32.
To give the top portion or disc of the shank member Ml greater flexibility, it is radially slotted as at 34 to define a series of spaced segments 36. Further enhancing flexibility are the circular openings 38 at the inward end of each slot 34.
Steps in the assembly of the covered button are shown in FIGS. 2 and 3. As shown, the fabric F is snugly wrapped over the top of the cover 12 with the margins of the fabric extending upward under the periphery I6 and being impaled by the teeth 18. Thereafter, the shank M is positioned as shown in FIG. 2 and pressed upward with respect to the cover I2 so that its periphery engages the teeth 13 and snaps therebeyond (FIG. 3).
Actual models embodying the invention indicate that this pressing and snapping together of the parts may be accomplished with unusually light pressure virtually irrespective of the weight of the fabric used to cover the button, and in this respect, the invention offers a marked improvement over the art. The parts are proportioned so that the teeth 11% engage in the annular comer between the ledge 26 and the flange 24 blocking the disassembly of the fabric F from the teeth I8 and assuring the unity of the assembly.
FIG. 4i and FIG. 6 show that when a force tending to pull the elements of the button apart is applied to the hub 28, the periphery 22 of the shank is held against outward movement by the teeth 18 and, because of the flexing of the portion 2th, the periphery 22 actually becomes greater in diameter causing the teeth 18 to more definitely engage and penetrate into the shank in the area of annular flange 24 and ledge 26. This action enhances the holding power of the shank within the shell in such a way that despite extreme pulling apart forces, the attachment between the cover and the shank becomes stronger. For disassembly, it is necessary to restore the assembly to the position shown in FIG. 1 and to individually maneuver each segment 36 out from under the teeth 26 by a thin-bladed knife or the like.
The present invention also has the advantage that it is simple, comprises only two parts, and it is extremely easy to as semble.
The invention may be described in the following claim language.
1. An assembly for making a covered button comprising a. a dome-shaped outer cover member having a concave undersurface defining an upward recess and having about its rim circumferentially arranged inward and upwardly directed pointed teeth;
b. a mushroom-shaped shank member molded integrally of plastic comprising a central thread-engaging hub having an outwardly and downwardly curving disc with an annular flange extending downward and spaced inward from the periphery of the disc to define an annular ledge facing downward adjacent the edge of the periphery, the disc being radially slitted from the perimeter inward a distance into the disc whereby, when the shank member is pressed into the recess of the outer cover member, the outer portions of the disc flex as the periphery engages the teeth and the portions snap back as they pass the teeth and lock into the cover member, and subsequent downward pulling of the shank member causes the ledge and flange to expand outward and the shank member to be engaged by the teeth more forcefully.
2. An assembly as described in claim I wherein the hub tapers toward its lower end and has a thread-receiving opening there adjacent.
3. An assembly as described in claim I including additionally a layer of fabric covering the cover member, impaled on the teeth and interposed between the cover and the periphery of the shank member.
l. A covered button comprising a. a rigid dome-shaped upper cover member of sheet metal presenting an upward recess and having a plurality of upwardly and inwardly directed rigid teeth spaced about the periphery thereof and extending into the mouth of the recess;
b. a fabric cover covering the surface of the member and having its margins extending up into the recess, the fabric being impaled on each of the teeth so that the thickness of the fabricdoes not decrease the size of the mouth of the recess;
c. a mushroom-shaped shank molded of resilient plastic and having a periphery slightly larger in dimension than the dimension of the mouth, the shank being disposed in the recess inside the mouth formed by the teeth, the center of the shank being disposed farther in the recess than the periphery and having a downwardly extending thread-en gaging hub, the shank having inward from its periphery, b. an umbrella-shaped shank molded of resilient plastic and an annular downward flange. having a top slightly larger in dimension than the aper- 5, A covered button as described in claim 4 wherein the ture the undersurface of the top having a downward anflange and the undersurface of the shank outward therefrom u flange spaced inward f its periphery; whereby form an annular corner into which the teeth may dig when the 5 after the top is snapped past the aperture into the open hub is pulled in a direction away from the cover.
6. An assembly for making a covered button comprising:
a. a rigid dome-shaped shell having an opening in the bottom thereof surrounded by inwardly directed rigid pointed teeth, the distal ends of the teeth defining a shank-receiving aperture;
ing, the shank cannot be readily withdrawn from the shell and the flange, extending downward beyond the level of the teeth, serves as a guard to shield the points of the teeth.
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