Outside Shower Assembly

Outside shower assemblies provided herein offer a sleek yet durable outside showers, that are easy, even for a novice and/or non-plumber, to attach in the spring and remove in fall and which hangs flush and securely to the wall. The assemblies comprise: a shower head; a shower valve; an assembly body having openings for the shower head and the shower valve; one or more pipes in fluid communication with the shower valve, each pipe having a fastener for connection to an external water source; and a mounting cleat on the assembly body, the mounting cleat having a contact surface. Methods of making an using the same are also provided.

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Description

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims priority under 35 U.S.C. §119(e) to U.S. patent application Ser. No. 61/836,860, filed Jun. 19, 2013, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

TECHNICAL FIELD

This disclosure relates to an outside shower assembly that is easily removable from a water supply and from its support structure for storing during cold weather.

BACKGROUND

Outside shower systems are readily used, especially in warm weather, for many reasons. Although outside shower systems have been around for a long time, problems often arise when such systems are not properly maintained. Upon arrival of cold and freezing weather, it is important to drain the system to prevent freezing pipes. Even after draining, however, many systems sustain damage during the cold weather and when the system is turned on in the spring, the system, as a result of the damage from the freezing weather, leaks.

As a result, there is an ongoing need for improved outside shower systems and assemblies that facilitate easy maintenance and removal to avoid the damage and resulting leaks that occur when the system is exposed to the cold and freezing weather.

SUMMARY

Provided are outside shower assemblies and methods of making and using the same. In a first aspect, the assembly comprises :a shower head; a shower valve; an assembly body having openings for the shower head and the shower valve; one or more pipes in fluid communication with the shower valve, each pipe having a fastener for connection to an external water source; and a mounting cleat on the assembly body, the mounting cleat having a contact surface.

The contact surface of the mounting cleat may operatively contact or connect to a support surface of a support structure upon placement of the outside shower assembly on the support structure. In one or more embodiments, the contact surface has an angle in the range of 10 to 80°, or 25 to 60°, or is 45°.

The fastener for connection to an external water source may be a swivel connector, or a flexible connector, or combinations thereof. The flexible connector may comprise stainless steel or plastic tubing or other suitable material.

In a second aspect, method of preparing an outside shower system are provided. The methods comprise: providing or obtaining any outside shower assembly disclosed herein; hanging the outside shower assembly on a support structure, where the contact surface of the mounting cleat operatively contacts or connects with a support surface of the support structure; and connecting each fastener to the external water source.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a front elevation of one embodiment of the outside shower invention;

FIG. 2 is a left side elevation of the embodiment if FIG. 1, as mounted to an exterior wall;

FIG. 3 is the same as FIG. 2, except that it shows cut-away of an internal pipe between the showerhead and the mix valve;

FIG. 4 is a front elevation, same as FIG. 1, except that it shows cut-away of the internal pipe between the showerhead and the mix valve, and a cut-away of the mix valve with hot and cold piping extending to swivel connections.

FIG. 5 is a front elevation of another embodiment of the outside shower invention;

FIG. 6 is a left side elevation of the embodiment if FIG. 5, as mounted to an exterior wall 15;

FIG. 7 is the same as FIG. 6, except that it shows cut-away of an internal pipe between a showerhead and a mix valve;

FIG. 8 is a front elevation, same as FIG. 5, except that it shows cut-away of fully encased piping, with a stainless steel flexible connector running from hot and cold swivel connectors to existing hot and cold piping; and

FIG. 9 is a side elevation of the outside shower invention, showing a cut-away of a mounting system.

The figures are not necessarily to scale. Like numbers used in the figures refer to like components. It will be understood, however, that the use of a number to refer to a component in a given figure is not intended to limit the component in another figure labeled with the same number.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The assemblies provided herein offer a sleek yet durable outside showers, that are easy, even for a novice and/or non-plumber, to attach in the spring and remove in fall and which hangs flush and securely to the wall.

The accompanying drawings represent embodiments of an outside shower apparatus in accordance with the present invention, which include rendering of existing hot and cold piping that is partially enclosed in the shower assembly invention (FIGS. 1-4) and existing piping that is fully enclosed in the shower assembly invention (FIGS. 5-8). The shower assembly invention in both instances is designed to be easily attached to and removed from the exterior wall of a building, by means of mounting system (including a mounting cleat, a mounting block, and a fastening screw), which allow for a fully flush wall mount.

Before describing several exemplary embodiments of the invention, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited to the details of construction or process steps set forth in the following description. The invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced or being carried out in various ways.

Turning to FIG. 1, the front view of one embodiment of a shower assembly 100 shows an assembly body 101 having front wall 1 and a tapered roof 3. The shower fixtures, including a showerhead 4 and a shower valve such as a mix valve 5, are provided through openings in the assembly body 101. An accessory such as a soap dish 6 is provided on the assembly body 101. FIG. 1 also shows hot and cold swivel connectors 7, which allow for flexibility instead of rigidity for purposes of attaching the shower assembly to any existing source of water, such as hot and cold pipes 8 located, for example, on an exterior wall of a structure such as a home or a bath house. Optional foot wash 17, in this embodiment, is provided on a cold water pipe.

FIGS. 2 and 3 each provide a side view of the assembly of FIG. 1. In FIG. 2, a sidewall 2 of the assembly 100 is shown in addition to the features already described for FIG. 1. The assembly 100 is attached to an exterior wall 15. FIG. 3 shows a cut-away of an internal pipe 9 between the showerhead 4 and the mix valve 5, as well as the hot and cold swivel connectors 7, which attach to the existing hot and cold piping 8.

FIG. 4 is a front view of the embodiment of FIG. 1, showing a cut-away of the internal pipe 9 between the showerhead 4 and the mix valve 5. In addition, a cut-away of the area around the mix valve 5 is provided showing connections to the hot and cold swivel connectors 7.

In FIG. 5, another embodiment of a shower assembly 200 provides a means of attaching piping to existing hot and cold piping, while also allowing for fully hidden piping. The shower assembly 200 has an assembly body 201 having a front wall 21 and a tapered roof 23. The shower fixtures, including a showerhead 24 and a shower valve such as a mix valve 25 are provided through openings in the assembly body 201. An accessory such as a soap dish 26 is provided on the assembly body 201. Optional first foot wash 14, in this embodiment, is provided on an outlet pipe of the mix valve. Optional second foot wash 17, in this embodiment, is provided on a cold water pipe. The assembly has a base member 32 and a beveled trim 30, which can be removable in order to provide access to the internal piping.

FIGS. 6 and 7 each provide a side view of the assembly of FIG. 5. In FIG. 6, a sidewall 22 of the assembly 200 is shown in addition to the features already described for FIG. 5. The assembly 200 is attached to an exterior wall 15. FIG. 7 shows a cut-away of an internal pipe 29 between the showerhead 24 and the mix valve 25.

FIG. 8 is a front view of the embodiment of FIG. 5, showing a cut-away of the internal pipe 29 between the showerhead 24 and the mix valve 25. An outlet of the mix valve 23 is used to provide warm water to the first optional foot wash 14. In addition, cut-aways of the areas around the mix valve 25 and the optional first foot wash 14 are provided showing connections to exiting hot and cold piping 28. The use of flexible connectors 16, either stainless steel or tubing or the like, in this embodiment is used instead of the hot and cold swivel connectors 7 as shown in FIGS. 1-4.

FIG. 9 shows a side view of the embodiment of FIG. 1 with a cut-away to highlight the unique mounting system, which is used to attach the assembly easily and securely to an exterior wall for a fully flush mount, regardless of the siding material used on the exterior wall (shingles, clapboard, etc.). The mounting system includes a mounting cleat 10, which is tapered and rests on a mounting block 11, which is also tapered in the opposite direction and is fastened to the exterior wall 15 by a fastening screw 12. The mounting block 11 is a support structure that provides a support surface for receipt of and contact with a contact surface of the mounting cleat 10. It is understood that the angle of taper can be adjusted to suit the application, but generally the angle of taper is in the range of 10° to 80°, or even 25° to 60°, or preferably 45°. The mounting system is suitable for the embodiment of FIG. 5 with additional fastening screws in the lower part of the system.

Structural differences between FIGS. 1-4 and FIGS. 5-8, other than the partial versus full encasement of pipes, is that the embodiment shown in FIG. 8: (1) uses flexible connectors 16 instead of hot and cold swivel connectors 7, to attach the assembly to the existing hot and cold piping 8 or 28; and (2) the mounting cleat 10, the mounting block 11 and the fastening screw 12 are used in two spots, while FIG. 9 shows only the upper attachment area on the unit (which is alike on both units).

Reference throughout this specification to “one embodiment,” “certain embodiments,” “one or more embodiments” or “an embodiment” means that a particular feature, structure, material, or characteristic described in connection with the embodiment is included in at least one embodiment of the invention. Thus, the appearances of the phrases such as “in one or more embodiments,” “in certain embodiments,” “in one embodiment” or “in an embodiment” in various places throughout this specification are not necessarily referring to the same embodiment of the invention. Furthermore, the particular features, structures, materials, or characteristics may be combined in any suitable manner in one or more embodiments.

Although the invention herein has been described with reference to particular embodiments, it is to be understood that these embodiments are merely illustrative of the principles and applications of the present invention. It will be apparent to those skilled in the art that various modifications and variations can be made to the method and apparatus of the present invention without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. Thus, it is intended that the present invention include modifications and variations that are within the scope of the appended claims and their equivalents.

Claims

1. An outside shower assembly comprising:

a shower head;
a shower valve;
an assembly body having openings for the shower head and the shower valve;
one or more pipes in fluid communication with the shower valve, each pipe having a fastener for connection to an external water source; and
a mounting cleat on the assembly body, the mounting cleat having a contact surface.

2. The outside shower assembly of claim 1, wherein the contact surface of the mounting cleat operatively contacts or connects to a support surface of a support structure upon placement of the outside shower assembly on the support structure.

3. The outside shower assembly of claim 1, wherein the contact surface has an angle in the range of 10 to 80°.

4. The outside shower assembly of claim 3, wherein the angle is in the range of 25 to 60°.

5. The outside shower assembly of claim 4, wherein the angle is 45°.

6. The outside shower assembly of claim 1, wherein the fastener for connection to an external water source is a swivel connector.

7. The outside shower assembly of claim 1, wherein the fastener for connection to an external water source is a flexible connector.

8. The outside shower assembly of claim 6, wherein the flexible connector comprises stainless steel.

9. A method of preparing an outside shower system, the method comprising:

providing or obtaining the outside shower assembly of claim 1;
hanging the outside shower assembly on a support structure, where the contact surface of the mounting cleat operatively contacts or connects with a support surface of the support structure; and
connecting each fastener to the external water source.

10. The method of claim 9, wherein the contact surface has an angle in the range of 10 to 80°.

11. The method of claim 10, wherein the angle is in the range of 25 to 60°.

12. The method of claim 11, wherein the angle is 45°.

13. The method of claim 9, wherein the fastener for connection to an external water source is a swivel connector.

14. The method of claim 9, wherein the fastener for connection to an external water source is a flexible connector.

15. The method of claim 9, wherein the flexible connector comprises stainless steel.

Patent History

Publication number: 20140373268
Type: Application
Filed: Jun 18, 2014
Publication Date: Dec 25, 2014
Inventor: Glenn R. Sherman (Harwich, MA)
Application Number: 14/308,098

Classifications

Current U.S. Class: Particular Construction (4/612); Gas And Water Specific Plumbing Component Making (29/890.14)
International Classification: A47K 3/28 (20060101);