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Title:
SAFETY GLOVE WITH FINGERTIP PROTECTIVE MEMBER
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2016/205655
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A safety glove having a protective member or insert extending around the fingertip of the safety glove is provided. The protective member may be positioned along the outer surface or the inner surface of the glove. Alternatively, the protective member may be integrally formed between two layers of glove material. The protective member terminates distally from an interphalangeal joint line to enable finger flexion in order to grasp an item, such as a slab of meat to be deskinned in a skinning machine. The glove may include a rough outer surface formed from thrice dipping the glove and allowing the glove to cure. Additionally, the glove may have a width near the wrist that is wider than the width near the palm to enable the glove to be rapidly removed (i.e., doffed) in an emergency event of the glove getting caught in a rotating blade on the skinning machine.

Inventors:
HULL, James L. (4133 Lace Road, NWMalvern, Ohio, 44644, US)
Application Number:
US2016/038085
Publication Date:
December 22, 2016
Filing Date:
June 17, 2016
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
SUMMIT GLOVE INC. (310 South Grant Street, Minerva, Ohio, 44657-1822, US)
International Classes:
A41D19/015
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WERNOW, Howard L. et al. (4940 Munson Street NW, Aegis Tower Suite 1100Canton, Ohio, 44718, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A protective glove comprising:

a proximal wrist end opposite a distal fingertip end;

a first finger sleeve including a distal tip; and

a protective member adjacent the distal tip and positioned distal from an interphalangeal joint line, wherein the protective member is hardened relative to the first finger sleeve. 2. The glove of Claim 1 , further comprising:

a first layer of material forming the first finger sleeve; and

wherein the protective member is positioned interior the first layer and extending around the distal tip inside the glove. 3. The glove of Claim 1 , further comprising:

a first layer of material;

a second layer of material exterior the first layer of material;

wherein the protective member is positioned between the first layer and the second layer.

4. The glove of Claim 3, wherein the protective member is integrally formed between the first and second layers of material extending from a first end over and around a distal tip region first finger sleeve to a second end. 5. The glove of Claim 4, further comprising an indicator layer positioned between the protective member and the second layer of material.

6. The glove of Claim 5, wherein the indicator layer is acrylic in combination with styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR).

7. The glove of Claim 5, wherein the indicator layer has a color that is different than that of the second layer of material adapted to provide a visual indicator if the second layer of material is ripped, torn, cut, or otherwise broken. 8. The glove of Claim 4, wherein the protective member has a color that is different than that of the second layer of material adapted to provide a visual indicator if the second layer of material is ripped, torn, cut, or otherwise broken.

9. The glove of Claim 4, wherein each protective member is thimble-shaped and includes an annular edge defining an opening opposite a tip, wherein the annular edge is positioned entirely distal of an interphalangeal line associated with the first finger sleeve.

10. The glove of Claim 3, wherein the first layer and the second layer are identical material.

1 1. The glove of Claim 3, wherein the first layer and the second layer are selected from the group comprising: natural rubber, milled rubber, Acrynitrile Butadiene Rubber, Chloroprene, aluminum, and pre-vulcanized latex.

12. The glove of Claim 1 , wherein the protective member is positioned entirely distal of the interphalangeal joint line.

13. The glove of Claim 1 , further comprising:

a wrist region intermediate the proximal end and the distal fingertip end;

a palmar region intermediate the wrist region and the distal fingertip end; wherein the wrist region has a first width, and the palmar region has a second width less than the first width when the glove is laid flat, and the configuration of the first and second widths enables the glove to be rapidly pulled from a wearer's hand if the distal fingertip end is caught in a rotating blade.

14. The glove of Claim 1 , further comprising:

a first layer defining the first finger sleeve, wherein the first layer is formed from dipping a mold at least three times in a bath of liquefied first layer material. 15. The glove of Claim 1 , further comprising a rough outer surface on the first finger sleeve formed from dipping the glove liquefied material that defines a first layer when cured.

16. The glove of Claim 15, wherein the rough outer surface is defined by lateral ridges, valleys, and vertical striations adapted to drain grease byproduct therealong during a meat skinning process.

17. A method comprising the steps of:

donning a protective work glove including a protective layer adjacent a tip of a finger region on the glove, wherein the protective layer is fabricated from a hardened material and is positioned between two layers of flexible material;

skinning meat in a skinning device including a rotating blade; and

protecting a wearer from injury if the protective work glove contacts the rotating blade.

18. The method of Claim 17, wherein prior to the step of skinning the meat comprises the steps of:

grasping the meat that needs skinned in a skinning device such that the an etched outer layer of material contacts the meat and provides a gripping surface with a plurality of randomized alternating ridges and valleys; wherein the plurality of randomized alternating ridges and valleys are formed from dipping a mold at least three times in a bath of liquefied outer layer material.

19. The method of Claim 18, wherein the step of grasping the meat is

accomplished by flexing finger regions in the glove at the interphalangeal joint line to grip the meat, wherein the protective member is entirely distal of the

interphalangeal joint line.

20. The method of Claim 17, wherein the step of skinning the meat is accomplished by:

resting the glove fingertips on a skinning table top while grasping the meat; guiding the meat over the rotating blade narrowly exposed through a hole defined in the skinning table top; and

wherein if the fingertip of the glove comes into contact with the rotating blade, the protective member made of hardened material will protect the tips of a finger in a thimble-like manner.

Description:
SAFETY GLOVE WITH FINGERTIP PROTECTIVE MEMBER

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS This application claims the benefit of prior U.S. Provisional Patent Application Serial No. 62/181 ,967 filed June 19, 2015, the disclosure of which is entirely incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND

TECHNICAL FIELD

The present disclosure relates generally to gloves. More particularly, the present disclosure is directed to work gloves for use in the food processing industry. Specifically, the present disclosure is directed to a protective work glove that includes an etched exterior layer which has improved abrasion resistance and a protective member integrally formed at the tip of each finger and thumb.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

In many industries it is both desirable and necessary for workers to wear protective gloves. One of these industries is the food processing industry, particularly the meat packing industry. In the meat packing industry, many workers have to use knives during the performance of their jobs and, thus, there is a risk of accidentally cutting through the glove and injuring the worker's hand. It is therefore vital that a cut-resistance glove be worn in these particular occupations. Other workers use motorized machinery to perform tasks. One such machine is a deriding skinner which is utilized to simultaneously remove skin and a layer of fat from carcasses during meat processing. These skinners are configured to remove tough, thick layers of skin from a carcass. Consequently, workers gloves have to be strong and abrasion resistant so as to try and prevent a worker's hand from being badly hurt if it coming into contact with the blade region of a deriding skinner.

A number of patents are directed to protective gloves which are cut-resistant and abrasion resistant. For example, U.S. patent no. 4,172,293 and a protective glove commercially known as "Best Nitty Gritty" manufactured by Showa Best Glove of Menlo, Georgia. SUMMARY

Issues continue to exist with protective gloves insofar as they still may lack adequate protection in the fingertip region. Thus, a need exists for an improved protective glove used in the meat packing industry. The present disclosure addresses these and other issues.

In one aspect, an embodiment of the present disclosure may provide a protective glove comprising: a flexible first layer; a hardened second layer; a flexible third layer; a tip of a finger region adapted to receive a user's finger therein; and wherein the hardened second layer is between the flexible first and third layers adjacent the tip of the finger region.

In another aspect, an embodiment of the present disclosure may provide a protective glove comprising: a distal tip of a finger region adapted to receive a user's finger therein; a flexible first layer extending over a distal tip of a finger region; a hardened second layer extending over the distal tip of the finger region and positioned entirely distal from an interphalangeal join plane; and an indicator layer extending over the distal tip of the finger region positioned between the first layer and the second layer, wherein the indicator layer provides a visual identifier to a user in the event that the flexible first layer is broken.

In another aspect, an embodiment may provide a method comprising the steps of: donning a protective work glove including a protective layer adjacent a tip of a finger region on the glove, wherein the protective layer is fabricated from a hardened material and is positioned between two layers of flexible material; skinning meat in a skinning device including a rotating blade; wherein the protective layer protects a user from injury if the protective work glove contacts the rotating blade.

In another aspect, an embodiment of the present disclosure may provide a protective glove comprising: a proximal wrist end opposite a distal fingertip end; a first finger sleeve including a distal tip; and a protective member adjacent the distal tip and positioned distal from an interphalangeal joint line, wherein the protective member is hardened relative to the first finger sleeve.

In another aspect, an embodiment of the present disclosure may provide a method comprising the steps of: donning a protective work glove including a protective layer adjacent a tip of a finger region on the glove, wherein the protective layer is fabricated from a hardened material and is positioned between two layers of flexible material; skinning meat in a skinning device including a rotating blade; and protecting a wearer from injury if the protective work glove contacts the rotating blade.

In another aspect, an embodiment of the present disclosure may provide a safety glove having a protective member or insert extending around the fingertip of the safety glove. The protective member may be positioned along the outer surface or the inner surface of the glove. Alternatively, the protective member may be integrally formed between two layers of glove material. The protective member terminates distally from an interphalangeal joint line to enable finger flexion in order to grasp an item, such as a slab of meat to be deskinned in a skinning machine. The glove may include a rough outer surface formed from thrice dipping the glove and allowing the glove to cure. Additionally, the glove may have a width near the wrist that is wider than the width near the palm to enable the glove to be rapidly removed (i.e., doffed) in an emergency event of the glove getting caught in a rotating blade on the skinning machine.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS

A sample embodiment of the invention is set forth in the following description, is shown in the drawings and is particularly and distinctly pointed out and set forth in the appended claims.

Fig. 1 is a front elevation view of a protective work glove in accordance with an aspect of the present invention;

Fig. 2 is a rear elevation view of the protective work glove of Fig. 1 ;

Fig. 3 is an enlarged front view of the highlighted region of Fig. 1 and showing the etched rubber on the exterior surface of at least part of the work glove;

Fig. 4 is a longitudinal cross-section of a finger region of the work glove taken along line 4-4 of Fig. 2. Fig. 5 is a longitudinal cross-section of a finger region of the work glove taken along line 4-4 of Fig. 2 including an indicator layer positioned between a flexible outer layer and a hardened layer;

Fig. 6 is an enlarged elevation view of a finger region of the work glove detailing a rip or tear or cut in an outer flexible layer such that an indicator layer is visible to provide a visual identifier that the glove is broken and needs replaced; and

Fig. 7 is a cross section view of a finger region for an alternative embodiment glove having a protective member therein.

Similar numbers refer to similar parts throughout the drawings.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Referring to Figs 1-6 there is shown a work glove in accordance with an aspect of the present invention, generally indicated at 10. Glove 10 comprises a wrist region 12, a palm region 14, finger regions 16 and a thumb region 18. Glove

10 is configured to receive a user's hand therein through an opening (not shown) but defined in a first end 12a of wrist region 12.

Wrist region 12 is configured to cover a portion of a user's wrist and forearm and first end 12a thereof is preferably angled such that a first side 12b of wrist region 2 is longer than a second side 12c thereof. First side 12b is that side which is located adjacent thumb region 18.

Wrist region 12 has a first width 13 when glove 10 is laid flat. The wrist region 12 width is widest portion of the glove 0 and defines an opening 15 through which a user or wearer is intended to insert their hand.

Palm region 14 is positioned distally from wrist region 12and positioned proximal from first end 12a. Palm region 14 is configured to cover the palm of the user's hand and the back(i.e., dorsal portion) of their hand. Palm region 14 has a second width associated with it which may referred to as second width 17. Second width 17 is less than the first width 13 of the wrist region 12. As such, when glove 10 is laid flat, side edges 12b, 12c taper inwardly from wrist region 12 towards palm region 14. By enabling wrist region 12 to have a greater width than that of palm region 14, glove 10 is enabled to rapidly and easily be pulled from the wearer's hand. The rapid doffing may occur during the meat skinning process if the distal tip of the glove is caught in a rotating blade.

Finger region 16 extends distally outward from palm region 14 in a direction opposite to wrist region 12. Finger region 16 include the index finger region 16a, middle finger region 16b, ring finger region 16c, and little finger region 16c. The respective finger regions are defined by finger sleeve coverings formed of glove material. The finger sleeves are similarly labeled by reference numerals 16a, 16b, 16c, and 16d.

Thumb region 18 also extends outwardly from palm region 14 in a direction generally opposite to wrist region. Thumb region 18 is located in front of finger region 16.

In accordance with an aspect of the present invention and as illustrated in Fig. 4, glove 10 may be fabricated from a first layer 20. First layer 20 forms part of every region of glove 10. Thus, first layer 20 is provided as part of wrist region 12, palm region 14, finger region 16 and thumb region 18. Fig. 1 shows that first layer 20 is the exterior layer covering most of wrist region 12. First layer 20 is of substantially the same thickness over the entire glove 10 with the exception of the tips of each respective finger region 16a, 16b, 16c, and 16d. As illustrated in Fig. 4, in the tip 22 of each digit, such as index finger region 16a, first layer 20 is thinner than over the rest of glove 10 and a protective member 24 of material is provided exteriorly of first layer 20. In one embodiment, the protective member 24 may be a hardened acrylic and provides additional protection in the tips 22 of each finger. A liner of drilled cotton 26 may be provided interiorly of first layer 20. This drilled cotton liner 26 makes glove 10 more comfortable to wear as it is gentle on the skin and also absorbs perspiration from the user's hand. The drilled cotton liner 26 is secured to first layer 20 in any suitable manner, however normally the cotton liner 26 is fitted to a mold and dipped into liquid rubber creating adhesion between the two. Further, alternative to drilled cotton liner 26, a liner of interlock or jersey cotton may be utilized to provide comfort for the user's skin.

The protective member 24 is integrally formed in glove 10 extending from a first end 40 over and around a distal tip region 22 of each finger region 16 to a second end 44. In the embodiment described above, protective member 24 is a hardened acrylic or hardened rubber however, other hardened materials used to protect the tip region 22 of each finger region 16 are entirely possible. For example, hardened polymers, Kevlar, hardened milled rubbers, and various other hardened non-metals may suffice. It may be undesirable in some instances to use a metal as protective member 24 because protective member 24 is designed to protect the tips of a user's fingers when inside the glove in the event the glove comes in contact with the metal blade on the skinner. The use of a metal protective member 24 contacting a rotating metal blade on the skinning device may damage the blade on the skinning device. However, it may be entirely possible to use a softer metal such as aluminum to fabricate protective member 24.

The first and second ends 40, 44 of protective member 24 terminate distally relative to a distal interphalangeal joint line 46. The interphalangeal line 46 is an imaginary line drawn at the location of the distal interphalangeal joint of a user's hand when the glove 10 is worn. The advantage of terminating protective member 24 distally from interphalangeal line 46 is that this design permits a user to continue to have a full range of motion in flexing the distal interphalangeal joint line 46 while protecting the tip regions 22 of their fingers with a solid protective member 24. The first and second ends 40,44 form a portion of an annular edge defining an opening opposite a tip of the protective member 24, wherein the annular edge is positioned entirely distal of the interphalangeal line 46 associated with the first finger sleeve 16a.

Protective member 24 is integrally formed between first layer 20 and a second etched outer layer 28 (described in further detail below). In one embodiment, the integral formation of a protective member 24 sandwiched between first layer 20 and second layer 28 is accomplished by adhering protective member 24 to first layer 20 with an adhesive and then coating second layer 28 over first layers 20 and protective member 24. In other embodiments, no adhesive is needed to secure protective member 24 to first layer 20.

In accordance with another aspect of the present invention, the second layer 28 of etched material is provided exteriorly over first layer 20 across all of the finger regions 16, the thumb region 18, the palm region 14 and a portion of wrist region 12 adjacent palm region. The second layer 28 comprises a plurality of randomized alternating ridges 28a and valleys 28b. The ridges 28a and valleys 28b are oriented generally horizontally relative to a longitudinal axis "Y" (Fig. 1) of glove 10.

In accordance with yet another aspect of the present invention, second layer 28 also includes a plurality of striations 28c, seen best in Fig. 3. Striations 28c are generally aligned with longitudinal axis "Y". Striations 28c extend across each individual valley 28b generally from one ridge 28a to the adjacent ridge 28a. The ridges 28a, valleys 28b, and striations 28c provides improved abrasion resistance to glove 10. The material of second layer 28 may be natural rubber that is milled, formed, and compressed rubber. The outer etching second layer 28 defining ridges 28a, valley 28b, and striations 28c defines a very rough outer surface of glove 10. The rough outer surface is advantageous in the meat packing industry to allow grease and water to drain through various channels defined by the valleys 28b and striations 28c so that glove 10 is less slippery, especially when working with pork and chicken. The etching of second layer 28 is formed as glove 10 is dipped in liquefied first layer and liquefied second layer material. It is entirely possible and foreseen that other methods of forming a rough surface around a protective member 24 would be entirely possible other than forming it through a dipped process.

As depicted in Fig. 5, another aspect of protective glove 10 includes an indicator layer 50. Indicator layer 50 extends from a first end 52 around the tip 22 to a second end 54. First end 52 and second end 54 of indicator layer 50 are both distal of interphalangeal joint 46. Indicator layer 50 is positioned between hardened protective member 24 and flexible outer second layer 28. Indicator layer 50 is preferably fabricated from acrylic in combination with styrene- butadiene rubber (SBR). Indicator layer 50 has a color that is different than that of flexible outer second layer 28 such that indicator layer 50 provides a visual indicator in the event that flexible outer second layer 28 is ripped or torn or otherwise broken. In one exemplary embodiment, indicator layer 50 is an orange color visually distinct from the color associated with outer flexible second layer 28.

While Fig. 5 details an embodiment of glove 10 having indicator layer 50 to provide a visual representation in the event the flexible outer second layer 28 is torn, it is entirely possible that an embodiment of Fig. 4 having only a hardened protective member 24 and a flexible outer second layer 28 is utilized and wherein the hardened protective member 24 is dyed a color different than that of the flexible outer second layer 28. If this version is employed, the hardened protective member 24 may be an orange thimble-like member that visually identifies a cut or tear or rip or otherwise break in the flexible outer second layer 28 of glove 10.

As depicted in Fig. 6, an exemplary tear or rip 56 is shown near the tip of a finger region of glove 10. The tear or rip 56 extends entirely through flexible outer second layer 28 revealing indicator layer 50 there beneath. Indicator layer 50 shows itself through the aperture defined by tear 56 in order to provide a visual indicator to the user that the glove is broken and needs replaced.

It will be understood that the style of glove 10 illustrated in these figures is a hand-specific glove, but other styles of glove, such as puppet gloves or mitts may utilize include the features of glove 10 which provide improved abrasion resistance.

A pair of gloves 10 in accordance with the above description and figures was fabricated and tested for abrasion resistance. Glove 10 is fabricated by forming the liner of drilled cotton 26 over a mold in the desired shape or form of resultant glove 10. The drilled cotton liner 26 may then be dipped into a liquid solution of first layer 20 and then removed allowing first layer 20 to cool. Protective member 24 may be attached via an adhesive to the tip end 22 of first layer 20. Thus, protective member 24 may be pre-hardened and secured to glove. Alternatively, the cotton liner 26 and first layer 20 may have the finger tips 22 dipped into an acrylic or polymer solution and removed and cured to form protective member 24. Thereafter, portions of the glove having first layer 20 and protective member 24 adhered thereto may be dipped into a bath of liquid second layer material wherein second layer 28 is then permitted to cool. The milled features 28a, 28b, 28c of second layer 28 may be formed while second layer 28 cools and cures. Second layer 28 may be a natural rubber, Acrynitrile Butadiene Rubber, or Chloroprene. Similarly, first layer 20 may be a natural rubber, Acrynitrile Butadiene Rubber, or Chloroprene. Alternatively, first layer 20 and second layer 28 may also be pre-vulcanized latex.

When the layers are formed from pre-vulcanized latex, glove 10 may be dipped at least three times into the bath of liquid pre-vulcanized latex layer material. By dipping three times, glove 10 is formed thicker than conventional protective gloves in the meat packing industry. The thrice dipped thick glove 10 is semi-stiff or semi-rigid and less flexible than conventional protective glove. One exemplary, non-limiting advantage of a thrice dipped semi-rigid glove 10 is that the rigid form enables the glove to be removed from the hand (i.e., doffed) very quickly in the event of an emergency with the glove getting caught in the machine. The thick glove 10 having the wider first width 13 also assists with rapid removal of thick glove 10 in such an emergency.

In the embodiment of glove 10 that includes indicator layer 50 positioned between outer second layer 28 and the hardened protective member 24, the indicator layer 50 is applied over the hardened member 24. Then the glove with the indicator layer 50 is dipped into a liquid bath of the second layer 28 such that the dipping process seals indicator layer 50 therebetween the second layer 28 and the hardened protective member 24.

Once glove 10 is fabricated, a user dons the glove by inserting their hand into the interior portions of the glove contacting cotton liner 26. User may then grasp a piece of meat that needs skinned in a skinning device. When grasping the meat, the etched second layer 28 contacts the meat and provides a gripping surface with the plurality of randomized alternating ridges 28a and valleys 28b. Additionally, the material of first layer 20 and second layer 28 allow the user to flex their fingers to assist in the gripping of the meat. Further, with protective member 24 integrally formed between first and third layer entirely distal of the interphalangeal line 46, the tips 22 of a user's fingers are protected when manipulating the meat onto the skinning device while still allowing fingers to flex about the interphalangeal joint.

During the skinning process, the user guides the meat over a rotating blade narrowly exposed through a hole defined in a skinning table top (i.e., a deriding skinner machine). The user may rest the tips of the glove on the table top and move the piece of meat over the hole having the rotating skinning blades moving therein. In the event that tip region 22 of glove 10 comes into contact with the rotating blade, the protective member 24 made of hardened material will protect the tips of a finger in a thimble-like manner. Stated otherwise, protective member 24 may be generally cup-shaped to cover the tips of a wearer's fingers such that the cup-shaped protective member terminates between the base of a wearers finger nail and the interphalangeal joint. One exemplary and non-limiting deriding skinner machine is manufactured and commercially available for sale under the name "SK 15-340 Pork Skinner" by Marel hf of Reykjavik, Iceland.

Fig. 7 depicts a first finger region 1 16a of a protective glove 1 10 in accordance with one aspect of an alternative embodiment of the present disclosure. Glove 1 10 is formed from a single layer 128 of flexible material. The single layer 128 may form similar rough surfaces (i.e., 28a, 28b) to provide suitable grip during the meat handling process. However, unlike glove 10 which has an integrally formed protective member 24, glove 110 is designed to utilize a protective member 124 which may be retrofitted to an existing protective glove. Stated otherwise, glove 1 10 is formed by retrofitting an ordinary and usual non-slip glove utilized in the meat packing industry with the protective member 124 inserted into the fingertip region. Fig.7 depicts the step of retrofitting an ordinary meat packing protective glove into glove 1 10 by inserting protective member 124 into the fingertip in the direction of Arrow A.

Protective member 124 may fit into the inner surface of layer 128 via a frictional interference fit, or may be attached with a thin layer of adhesive. Alternatively, protective member 124 may fit interiorly of a liner 126 and be connected thereto. In each instance, protective member 124 is shaped similar to a thimble and has an end that terminates distally from imaginary interphalangeal joint line 46, similar to that of glove 10.

In the foregoing description, certain terms have been used for brevity, clearness, and understanding. No unnecessary limitations are to be implied therefrom beyond the requirement of the prior art because such terms are used for descriptive purposes and are intended to be broadly construed.

Moreover, the description and illustration set out herein are an example and the invention is not limited to the exact details shown or described.