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United States Patent Application 20170280838
Kind Code A1
Gray; Lee Antony October 5, 2017

AN ORNAMENTAL COMPONENT FOR A BRACELET AND/OR NECKLACE

Abstract

An ornamental component (300) for a bracelet and/or necklace, comprising a housing with a cavity defining projecting rims of end walls of the housing and a ring manufactured from a resilient friction material, wherein the ring comprises at least two cut-outs in the inside surface (303) of the ring, said cut-outs defining associated at least two inwardly projecting projections of the ring for frictionally gripping a surface of the elongated member so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along an elongated member, an entirety of the cut-outs being free of material.


Inventors: Gray; Lee Antony; (Landskronagade, DK)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Pandora A/S

Havneholmen

DK
Family ID: 1000002705212
Appl. No.: 15/507478
Filed: September 1, 2015
PCT Filed: September 1, 2015
PCT NO: PCT/DK2015/050257
371 Date: February 28, 2017


Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: A44C 25/007 20130101; A44C 15/005 20130101; A44C 5/00 20130101
International Class: A44C 25/00 20060101 A44C025/00; A44C 15/00 20060101 A44C015/00; A44C 5/00 20060101 A44C005/00

Foreign Application Data

DateCodeApplication Number
Sep 2, 2014EP14183278.2

Claims



1. An ornamental component for a bracelet and/or necklace, said ornamental component having a stringing hole defining a stringing hole axis extending in an axial direction, with a radial direction extending radially from the axial direction and a circumferential direction extending about the axial direction, said stringing hole allowing said ornamental component to be strung on an elongated member of a bracelet and/or necklace along said stringing hole axis; said ornamental component comprising: a housing having an ornamental outer surface, a first end wall, and a second, opposite end wall, said end walls extending in said radial direction, said housing further having a first opening in the first end wall, a second opening in the second end wall and an interior cavity, said interior cavity being positioned between said first and second openings, said first and second openings being connected to said interior cavity and forming part of the stringing hole, where a dimension of the cavity in said radial direction is larger than corresponding dimensions of the first and second openings, the housing thereby comprising a radially inwards extending first projecting rim of the first end wall and a radially inwards extending second projecting rim of the second end wall, each said rim forming an inner portion of the respective end wall, which inner portion surrounds a respective said opening; and a ring manufactured from a resilient friction material and having an inner circumference defining a through hole and an opposite, outer circumference, the ring being positioned in said interior cavity of the housing to be encased by the housing, the through hole of the ring forming part of the stringing hole and having a smaller dimension in said radial direction than the first and second openings of the end walls, said ring extending in said axial direction between the first and second rims, said outer circumference of the ring being larger than the first and second openings so that the rims fix the ring in the axial direction, wherein the ring comprises at least two cut-outs in its said inner circumference, each cut-out extending from the inner circumference of the ring towards the outer circumference of the ring, said cut-outs thus providing at least two inwardly projecting projections of the ring, each projection projecting inwards from a mutual circumference defined by bottom surfaces of the cut-outs to said inner circumference of the ring, said projections being adapted to frictionally grip a surface of the elongated member so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member, said cut-outs being fully open to allow the projections to freely resiliently expand in the circumferential direction in an entire radial depth of the cut-outs.

2. An ornamental component according to claim 1, wherein said first opening is provided as a central opening of the first end wall, and the second opening is provided as a central opening of the second end wall.

3. An ornamental component according to claim 1, wherein the ring comprises a third cut-out in the inner circumference of the ring, each of the first to third cut-outs extending towards the outer circumference of the ring, said first to third cut-outs providing at least three inwardly projecting projections of the ring for frictionally gripping a surface of the elongated member so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member, said first to third cut-outs being fully open to allow the projections to freely resiliently expand in the circumferential direction in an entire radial depth of the cut-out.

4. An ornamental component according to claim 3, wherein each of said three cut-outs extend over an angle of approximately 70.degree. to 90.degree. of the inner circumference of the ring.

5. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein each projection comprises a first and a second cut-out side surface defined by the adjacent cut-outs, the side surfaces being substantially straight and extending substantially in the radial direction from the through hole.

6. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein each projection in a cross section parallel to the axial direction has a convex shape.

7. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein each cut-out has a depth dimension in the radial direction that is 1/10 to 1/4 of a total extent of the ring in the radial direction.

8. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein the first rim and/or second rim extend(s) circumferentially around the first opening and/or second opening, respectively.

9. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein the ring has a first lateral surface and a second, opposite lateral surface, the first rim abutting the first lateral surface and the second rim abutting the second lateral surface, wherein the first rim and/or second rim at least partly are substantially leveled with a bottom of the radial depth of the cut-outs in the radial direction.

10. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein the ring has a width in the axial direction of approximately 1 to 5 mm. preferably 1.5 to 4 mm, more preferred 2 to 3 mm.

11. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein the first rim and/or second rim has a width in the axial direction of approximately 0.3 mm to 3 mm, preferably 0.5 mm to 2 mm, more preferred 0.6 to 1 mm.

12. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein the cavity substantially has a cylinder shape, an inner circumference of the cavity forming a cylinder shell extending substantially in the axial direction and abutting an outer circumference of the ring.

13. An ornamental component according to any one of claim 1, wherein each projection comprises a first and a second cut-out side surface defined by the respective adjacent cut-out, said side surfaces being rounded.

14. An ornamental component according to claim 13, wherein each projection extends in an arc shape from a bottom surface circumference of the cut-outs.

15. An ornamental component according to claim 13, wherein the projections have a semi-spherical shape with a semi-circular shape in cross sections parallel to and perpendicular to the axial direction of the ring.

16. A bracelet or a necklace comprising: an elongated member; and an ornamental component and a number of freely movable beads strung on said elongated member; wherein the ornamental component is configured so that the projections resiliently grip the surface of the elongated member to adjustably fix the ornamental component along the elongated member.

17. A method for manufacturing an ornamental component, comprising: providing the housing; providing the ring; resiliently compressing said ring in the radial direction; and inserting said ring in said cavity through the first or second opening; and allowing the ring to resiliently expand inside said cavity so that said ring extends between the first and second rims so that the through hole forms part of the stringing hole.

18. A set of parts for assembly of an ornamental component, comprising: a housing having an ornamental outer surface, a first end wall, and a second, opposite end wall, said end walls extending in said radial direction, said housing further having a first opening in the first end wall, a second opening in the second end wall and an interior cavity, said interior cavity being positioned between said first and second openings, said first and second openings being connected to said interior cavity, where a dimension of the cavity in said radial direction is larger than corresponding dimensions of the first and second openings, the housing thereby comprising a radially inwards extending first projecting rim of the first end wall and a radially extending second projecting rim of the second end wall, each said rim forming an inner portion of the respective end wall, which inner portion surrounds a respective said opening; and a ring manufactured from a resilient friction material and having an inner circumference defining a through hole and an opposite outer circumference, the ring having a smaller dimension in said radial direction than the first and second openings of the housing, said outer circumference of the ring being larger than the first and second openings of the housing, the ring being resiliently compressible in said radial direction so as to be adapted for being inserted in a resiliently compressed state through the first or second opening and then expand to assume a fixed position in said interior cavity so that the through hole forms part of the stringing hole and so that said ring extends between the first and second rims, wherein the ring comprises at least two cut-outs in its said inner circumference, each cut-out extending from the inner circumference of the ring towards the outer circumference of the ring, each projection projecting inwards from a mutual circumference defined by bottom surfaces of the cut-outs to said inner circumference of the ring, said cut-outs thus providing at least two inwardly projecting projections of the ring, each projection projecting inwards from a mutual circumference defined by bottom surfaces of the cut-outs to said inner circumference of the ring, said projections being adapted to frictionally grip a surface of the elongated member so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member.

19. An ornamental component for a bracelet and/or necklace, comprising a housing with an ornamental surface and an interior cavity, wherein rims of end walls of the housing surround openings in the end walls, and a ring manufactured from a resilient friction material is positioned in said cavity between said rims, wherein the ring comprises at least two cut-outs in an inside circumference of the ring, said cut-outs thus providing at least two inwardly projecting projections of the ring for frictionally gripping a surface of an elongated member of the bracelet and/or necklace so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member, an entirety of the cut-outs being free of material.

20. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein said first opening is provided as a central opening of the first end wall, and the second opening is provided as a central opening of the second end wall.

21. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein the ring comprises a third cut-out in the inner circumference of the ring, each of the first to third cut-outs extending towards an outer circumference of the ring, said first to third cut-outs providing at least three inwardly projecting projections of the ring for frictionally gripping a surface of the elongated member so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member, said cut-outs being fully open to allow the projections to freely resiliently expand in the circumferential direction in an entire radial depth of the cut-out.

22. An ornamental component according to claim 21, wherein each of said three cut-outs extend over an angle of approximately 70.degree. to 90.degree. of the inner circumference of the ring.

23. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein each projection comprises a first and a second cut-out side surface defined by the adjacent cut-outs, the side surfaces being substantially straight and extending substantially in the radial direction from the through hole.

24. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein each projection in a cross section parallel to an axial direction of the ring has a convex shape.

25. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein each cut-out has a depth dimension in a radial direction of the ring that is 1/10 to 1/4 of a total extent of the ring in the radial direction.

26. An ornamental component according to claim 19 wherein each rim extends circumferentially around a respective said opening.

27. An ornamental component according to claim 19 wherein the ring has a first lateral surface and a second, opposite lateral surface, a first of said rims abutting the first lateral surface and a second of said rims abutting the second lateral surface, wherein the first rim and/or second rim at least partly are substantially leveled with a bottom of the radial depth of the cut-outs in a radial direction of the ring.

28. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein the ring has a width in the axial direction of approximately 1 to 5 mm. preferably 1.5 to 4 mm, more preferred 2 to 3 mm.

29. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein one or both said rims has/have a width in the axial direction of approximately 0.3 mm to 3 mm, preferably 0.5 mm to 2 mm, more preferred 0.6 to 1 mm.

30. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein the cavity substantially has a cylinder shape, an inner circumference of the cavity forming a cylinder shell extending substantially in an axial direction of the ring and abutting an outer circumference of the ring.

31. An ornamental component according to claim 19, wherein each projection comprises a first and a second cut-out side surface defined by the respective adjacent cut-out, said side surfaces being rounded.

32. An ornamental component according to claim 31, wherein each projection extends in an arc shape from bottom surfaces of the cut-outs.

33. An ornamental component according to claim 31, wherein the projections have a semi-spherical shape with a semi-circular shape in cross sections parallel to and perpendicular to an axial direction of the ring.

34. A bracelet or a necklace comprising: an elongated member; and an ornamental component and a number of freely movable beads strung on said elongated member; wherein the ornamental component is configured so that the projections resiliently grip the surface of the elongated member to adjustably fix the ornamental component along the elongated member.

35. A method for manufacturing an ornamental component, comprising: providing the housing; providing the ring; resiliently compressing said ring in a radial direction; and inserting said ring in said cavity through one of the openings; and allowing the ring to resiliently expand inside said cavity so that said ring extends between the rims so that the through hole forms part of a stringing hole.

36. A set of parts for assembly of an ornamental component, comprising: a housing with an ornamental surface and an interior cavity, wherein rims of end walls of the housing surround openings in the end walls, and a ring manufactured from a resilient friction material for being positioned in said cavity between said rims, wherein the ring comprises at least two cut-outs in an inside circumference of the ring, said cut-outs thus providing at least two inwardly projecting projections of the ring for frictionally gripping a surface of an elongated member of the bracelet and/or necklace so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member, an entirety of the cut-outs being free of material.
Description



FIELD

[0001] The present invention relates jewellery, especially charm jewellery, and specifically to an ornamental component for a bracelet or a necklace, to a bracelet or a necklace comprising such an ornamental component and to a set of parts for and a method of manufacturing an ornamental component.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Jewellery, such as necklaces and bracelets, often consists of a plurality of freely movable ornamental components, e.g. beads or charms, strung on an elongated member, e.g. a chain, wire, or string.

[0003] A widely used type of jewellery in later years is the so-called charm bracelet, which involves a consumer initially buying an elongated member (typically a bracelet chain) and later expands his or her collection of different charms, which can then be assembled in many different ways to produce a special or individualized bracelet. A very large amount of differently designed ornamental components or charms are available on the market.

[0004] To prevent the freely movable ornamental components from grouping together at the bottom of the necklace or bracelet or to group the freely movable beads in certain areas of the elongated member, an ornamental component provided with a stopping mechanism configured to grip the necklace or bracelet may be used. The ornamental component can be fixed or attached to the elongated member in one or more positions along the elongated member and has such dimensions that the freely movable charms are not able to move past the component. A variety of such ornamental components have been suggested in the prior art.

[0005] The Applicant markets an extremely popular charm bracelet type which has been patented in Applicant's U.S. Pat. No. 7,007,507. In this patented bracelet an elongated member (the jewellery chain) comprises threaded bands, which are known as "stoppers". The bands or stoppers are fixed to the elongated member and are configured to interact with an ornamental component to removably attach said component to the band. The band may comprise external threads interacting with internal threads of the ornamental component. The ornamental component may be a clip type charm with two parts hinged to each other. Since the band or stopper is fixed to the elongated member, it is not possible to freely adjust the position of the ornamental component along the elongated member.

[0006] The charm jewellery industry has tried to develop satisfactory alternative solutions, which do not need the provision of a band or stopper fixed to the elongated member to attach charms to the elongated member. On example is disclosed in Applicant's WO 20014/121798, which related to an ornamental component with an insert assembly comprising a tubular element and a gripping element, the insert assembly being inserted into a housing with an ornamental surface. The gripping element is provided to surround the tubular element, and gripping portions of the gripping element extending through holes of the tubular element to frictionally engage an elongated member. The ornamental component of WO 20014/121798 is one successful example of a type of charm where a member of a friction-enhancing material is positioned inside the charm to hold the charm on an elongated member without bands or stoppers.

[0007] However, since millions of bracelet chains with bands or stoppers fixed thereto have been sold to consumers all over the world in later years and are still in use, the charm jewellery industry has long desired to develop charms that can be used with elongated members both with and without bands/stoppers. Such charms could be sold to fit both types of elongated members and thus would have huge market potential. However, with the current prior art charms comprising interior members of friction-enhancing material, these interior members are destroyed during use either immediately or over time due to wear since the edges of the bands or stoppers cut into these members. Thus, in prior art attempts to create ornamental components, which can be attached to an elongated member without the use of "stoppers", the friction-enhancing material on the inside of the ornamental component would either not be able to pass by a stopper or would be destroyed when attempting to do so, or the charm could not be attached sufficiently strongly to the elongated member. In some of these ornamental components the friction-enhancing material is also visible when the ornamental component is positioned on the elongated member, which is disadvantageous to the visual aesthetics of the assembled jewellery item.

[0008] US 2003/0154742 discloses an ornamental component produced with an elastic body within an inside cavity configured to provide a frictional force on an elongated member.

[0009] US 2002/0148250 discloses an ornamental component in which a flexible tube is positioned inside an ornamental shell in alignment with the holes of the shell, the tube having a length that is as great as or greater than the spacing of the holes, an outside diameter that is larger than the diameter of the holes and an inside diameter that is slightly smaller than the maximum cross-sectional dimension of a chain so that the tube resiliently engages the elongated member to adjustably fix the position of the ornamental shell along the chain. This type of ornamental component can thus be adjusted to assume a fixed position potentially anywhere along the length of the elongated member, the tube providing a suitable friction with regards to the chain to allow the ornamental component to be moved by hand along the elongated member, but also to remain in position to provide a stop for the freely movable beads. Providing the tube inside the ornamental shell is a challenge and it is difficult to control the amount of friction in the ornamental component, especially since it may be necessary to apply a rather complicated method, e.g. using thermal deformation, to produce the ornamental component and precise positioning of the tube may be difficult. During manufacture using thermal deformation the characteristics of the tube may be affected, which may again influence optimal functioning of the ornamental component.

[0010] WO 2006/125155 discloses an ornamental component, which uses a friction enhancing material positioned to abut the elongated member to achieve adjustable fixation of the ornamental component along the strand. The friction enhancing material, such as silicone rubber, covers all or a portion of the inside dimensions of an ornamental ring. The material is bonded or moulded onto the interior surface of the ring.

[0011] On this background it is the object of the present invention to improve manufacture and functionality of ornamental components for adjustable fixation to an elongated member.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0012] According to a first aspect, the invention involves an ornamental component for a bracelet and/or necklace as defined in claim 1.

[0013] An ornamental component according to the invention may take the form of any component that can be strung on a bracelet and/or necklace for ornamental purposes, such as a bead or charm. It may also include a clip type charm.

[0014] The present invention has the essential advantage that the ornamental component, which may take the form of a charm, is able to pass over a band or stopper with minimal wear while the projections are still able to releasably fix the ornamental component on the elongated member after having passed the threaded stopper. This means that an ornamental component according to the invention can be used with both types of elongated members on the market today. The ornamental component according to the present invention can thus be used according to its purpose with elongated members both with and without bands or stoppers. The present invention's use of projections alleviates the problem of wear of the friction-enhancing material since each projection is able to expand (more) in both an axial and a circumferential direction of the ring and the ornamental component, allowing for the projections to deform so as to easily pass by the stoppers with less wear.

[0015] Furthermore, during manufacture of an ornamental component according to the above a separate ring may thus be readily inserted through one of the openings of the housing using the resilience of the ring to compress it to fit through the opening's dimensions. The cut-outs make the ring more compressible especially at the inner surface of the ring. This makes it easier to deform the ring during assembly. For example a part of the outer surface of the ring may be pushed inwardly so that the inner surfaces of the ring come in contact with each other and the ring may be folded in on itself at this part of the outer surface to thereby significantly lessen the extent of the outer dimensions of the ring so that it may fit through one of the openings. Assembly using mechanical deformation/compression only is thus possible, and manufacturing costs can be significantly lowered. At the same time the characteristics, such as frictional characteristics, of the ring can be maintained during manufacture. Thermal bonding or deformation can be completely avoided and the assembly of ring and housing can be carried out without use of adhesives. When inserted through the opening the ring may again expand to fit into the cavity and provide the stringing hole. By using the projecting rims to secure the ring inside the housing, the ornamental component may be easily assembled and held in the axial direction with a minimal use of components. Further, the projections protect the potentially more vulnerable ring from damage during use, e.g. from contact with the ornamental component with freely moving beads on the elongated member. If the ring substantially fits in the cavity so that it substantially covers all inside surfaces of the cavity or is slightly compressed within the cavity, any movement of the ring inside the cavity is prevented so that the ring is also held in the desired position.

[0016] That the cut-outs are fully open can alternatively be expressed by an entirety of the cut-outs being free of material. Thereby, expansion of the cut-outs in the circumferential direction is not limited by any physical element positioned in the cut-outs. The cut-outs being fully open or free of material is the case when the ornamental component is not strung onto the elongated member; when the ornamental component is strung on the elongated member, parts of the elongated member, such as a chain joint, may extend partly into one or more cut-outs. The cut-outs of the ring thus further provide improved control of the frictional characteristics of the ring when designing the component, specifically when designing the projections; broader, wider or deeper cut-outs make the projections more flexible in different directions since the projections are able to expand more in those directions. Instead of adjusting the material composition of which the ring is made up it is to a large degree possible to adjust the frictional characteristics of the ring in relation to the elongated member by adjusting the shape and size of the projections. If it is desired to provide projections more flexible in the circumferential direction, the cut-outs can be made deeper; if flexibility is desired in the axial direction, the projections can be designed to at least partly be spaced from the rims. Flexibility of the ring at the inner surface is thus easier to control at the inner surface. This also has the advantage that it provides greater freedom of selection of the composition of the material of the ring. For example it may be desired to manufacture the ring of a relatively hard material to improve the ring's wear resistance. A harder material can be selected to achieve improved frictional wear resistant characteristics of the harder material.

[0017] Furthermore, in the case where no projections are provided at the inner surface of the ring a force on a point on the inner surface of the ring will have a tendency to pull an opposite point on the inner surface toward itself. This means that it may be difficult to push the ornamental component past a widening such as a chain joint on the elongated member since the frictional force may be highly increased in the widened area. Providing a number of separate projections at the inner surface according to the invention may significantly lower this effect since the tendency of the projections to pull each other towards each other is significantly lowered.

[0018] The ornamental component may be forced to move along an elongated member, on which it is positioned by exerting a force in the axial direction, preferably using a hand.

[0019] The projections may project further into the through hole than the rims, and the rims may have such dimensions that they substantially do not exert any frictional force on the elongated member when the ornamental component moves along the stringing direction. The elongated member preferably has such external dimensions, including an external diameter, that when the ornamental component is positioned on the elongated member, the projections will be somewhat compressed in the radial direction. Preferably, only the projections are in contact with the elongated member so that a bottom surface of the cut-outs is not in contact with the elongated member. The projections preferably have such characteristics, including shape, size and material characteristics, that they substantially are not deformed in the axial direction during movement of the ornamental component in the axial direction along the strand. This ensures that the frictional force exerted by the projections on the elongated member is closer to constant during movement of the ornamental component. Depth of the cut-outs and/or projections is preferably 0.1 to 1, more preferred 0.2 to 0.5 of a diameter of the stringing hole. In the context of the present specification the term width refers to an extent in the axial direction and the term depth refers to an extent in the radial direction.

[0020] The ring and/or the housing and/or the ornamental component is/are preferably substantially symmetrical about a symmetry plane extending in the radial direction and/or about a symmetry plane extending in the axial direction.

[0021] The cut-outs and the projections are generally preferably of substantially similar shapes and sizes and are preferably distributed substantially evenly in a circumferential direction of the ring.

[0022] An ornamental component according to the invention may be used to organize freely movable beads on a bracelet or necklace, e.g. two ornamental components may be pulled in the axial direction to a desired position on an elongated member of a bracelet or necklace and released, whereby they resiliently grip the elongated member. This may be used to prevent any freely movable beads from grouping together or to group them in certain areas of the elongated member.

[0023] The ring and housing may each have a generally substantially circular or circular-cylindrical shape, the stringing hole axis extending through a centre of the circular ring and housing, the radial direction extending in a diametrical direction of the ring and housing. The rims and projections may extend substantially in this diametrical direction.

[0024] The housing may be integrally moulded, i.e. moulded in a single piece and it may comprise an ornamental outer surface provided with ornaments such as jewellery stones, patterns, projections etc. The housing may be made of any suitable material such as metal, wood, plastic or the like and does not extend into the cut-outs. The housing may be embellished with a layer comprising pearl, gold, silver or the like, or an element such as pearl, gemstones or the like, constituting the outer surface of the ornamental component for decorative purposes. The housing may comprise different housing parts, such as two half parts that are connected to each other. The decorative elements may be permanently attached or non-permanently attached to the housing.

[0025] The housing may have any suitable shape such as substantially spherical, cylindrical or cubical. The housing may be self-supporting and have a structural strength allowing it to be securely handled during the manufacturing process of the ornamental component. The housing may provide the primary structural strength and/or provide the structural integrity of the ornamental component.

[0026] The cavity of the housing may have a constant width and depth or may have a varying width and depth, e.g. the cavity of the housing may be wider in the central part of the housing than near the first opening and the second opening.

[0027] The rims may have any suitable shape and size. The end of the rims may define the radial extent of the openings and may have any desired shape such as flat, curved or corrugated. The openings are preferably substantially circular and co-axial with the ring. The rims may have a varying width, the width of the rims defining a width of the cavity. Consequently, the rims may in an efficient manner secure the ring inside the cavity of the housing by preventing axial movement of the ring in relation to the housing.

[0028] The ring and housing may be permanently attached or non-permanently attached to each other. An adhesive may be applied between a wall of the cavity and the ring to secure them to each other. The ring may have a set of characteristics including flexibility, elasticity, size and shape, allowing it to be insertable through the first and/or second opening of the housing by means of compression of the ring at least in the radial direction.

[0029] The ring may have any suitable outer shape such as round, cylindrical and rectangular. Correspondingly, the cavity may have any shape such as round, cylindrical and rectangular. Preferably, the cavity has a substantially circular-cylindrical shape, the outer side of the ring forming a circular cylinder shell, the diameters preferably being substantially identical.

[0030] The ring may be integrally moulded, i.e. moulded in one piece, separately from the housing.

[0031] The ring may be made of a resilient material configured to establish a high frictional connection with an elongated member of a bracelet and/or necklace. The ring may be made of a resilient material such as a silicone material including a silicone rubber. Preferably the ring is manufactured from a material comprising at least 50, more preferred at least 80, more preferred at least 95 percent of, most preferred essentially consists of, a material or a combination of materials selected from the group consisting of silicone, silicone rubber, natural rubber, synthetic rubber, PTFE, polyethylene, polypropylene, HDPE, polystyrene and nylon. The ring material may comprise additives and fillers, including colouring agents. The preferred modulus of elasticity (Young's modulus) of the material of the ring is 5 to 200 MPa, more preferred 10 to 150 MPa, more preferred 10 to 100 MPa, more preferred 20 to 80 MPa.

[0032] The term "cut-out" as used in connection with the ring includes for example indentations or depressions that may be cut out, moulded or otherwise provided in the ring. Preferably the cut-outs of the ring are formed by integral moulding of the ring. The "inside surface" of the ring is defined by the parts of the projections closest to the through hole or to a centre of the ring so that the surfaces of the cut-outs do not form part of the inside surface.

[0033] The at least two projections may each have an inner surface extending in a circumferential direction of the ring, defining the inner surface of the ring, said inner surfaces defining part of the stringing hole. The inner surfaces may extend an accumulated amount in the circumferential direction corresponding to an angle of approximately 250.degree. to 310.degree., preferably 260.degree. to 300.degree., more preferred 270.degree. to 290.degree.. The circumferential direction extends about the stringing hole axis.

[0034] In some embodiments the ring comprises three cut-outs forming also a third inwardly projecting integral projection of the ring for frictionally gripping the surface of the elongated member. Hereby a suitable amount of friction may be applied between an inner surface of the projections. With three projections this amount of friction can readily be dimensioned to be high enough to fix the ornamental component to the elongated member whilst also being small enough to allow a user to easily move the ornamental component along the elongated member to a new fixed position with the use of a suitable force provided by hand. If the three projections are substantially equally distributed in the circumferential direction stability of the ring in the axial direction is improved, a force exerted on the inner surface of the projections from the elongated member in the radial direction being substantially evenly distributed to the ring when the ornamental component is fixed in a position on the elongated member.

[0035] In some embodiments said three cut-outs extend an accumulated amount of an inner circumference of the ring corresponding to an angle of approximately 210.degree. to 270.degree., preferably 220.degree. to 260.degree., more preferred 230.degree. to 250.degree.. The three cut-outs may each have an inner opening extending in a circumferential direction of the ring. The inner openings make up an accumulated amount of the inner circumference of the ring corresponding to an angle of approximately 90.degree. to 150.degree., preferably 100.degree. to 140.degree., more preferred 110.degree. to 130.degree.. The cut-outs are generally preferably of similar shapes and sizes and are preferably distributed evenly in the circumferential direction of the ring. The inner openings and inner projections preferably constitute the entire circumference of the inner ring. The ring may comprise more than three cut-outs and consequently more than three projections. However, experiments have shown that three cut-outs forming three projections is an optimal choice in relation to ring stability and friction. In embodiments with more or less than three cut-outs the cut-outs also preferably extend an accumulated amount of an inner circumference of the ring corresponding to an angle of approximately 210.degree. to 270.degree., preferably 220.degree. to 260.degree., more preferred 230.degree. to 250.degree..

[0036] In some embodiments each projection comprises a first and a second lateral side surface defined by the adjacent cut-outs, the side surfaces being substantially straight and extending substantially in the radial direction from the through hole. Hereby the projections may deform in the circumferential direction, allowing the user to easily move the ornamental component along the elongated member. It is preferred that a bottom part of the cut-outs extend farther in the circumferential direction than a top part of the cut-outs. This improves the ability of the projections to deform in the circumferential direction.

[0037] In some embodiments each projection in a cross section parallel to the axial direction has a convex shape, preferably a curved shape, more preferred a substantially semi-circular shape, see also the detailed description below. Preferably the cross section extends through a centre of the through hole. Consequently, a larger surface area of the projections abuts the elongated member, the farther the projections are depressed in the radial direction by the elongated member. Similarly, each projection in a cross section perpendicular to the axial direction may have a concave shape, more preferred a curved shape, and more preferred a substantially semi-circular shape. Preferably this cross section extends through a centre plane of the ring. Consequently, each projection has an inner surface defining part of the through hole, this inner surface being curved or substantially semi-circular, in shape preferably corresponding to a part of an outer surface of the elongated member. Hereby the projections may fit snugly around an elongated member with a substantially circular surface, providing a larger area of contact.

[0038] In some embodiments each cut-out has a depth dimension in the radial direction that is 1/10 to 1/4 of a largest total extent of the ring in the radial direction, preferably 1/8 to 1/5, more preferred approximately 1/6. In case of a ring with a circular shape the largest total extent of the ring in the radial direction corresponds to a diameter of the circle. In other embodiments each cut-out has a depth dimension in the radial direction that is 1/4 to, preferably 3/8 to 5/8 of a distance from the inner to the outer surface of the ring. The dimension of the cut-outs is one of the factors that define the flexibility of the projections in the axial and circumferential directions. Consequently, the projections may deform to a suitable amount during movement along the elongated member.

[0039] In some embodiments the first rim and/or second rim extend(s) circumferentially around the first opening and/or the second opening, respectively. A width of each rim in the axial direction is preferably less than 1/4, more preferred less than 1/5, most preferred less than 1/6 of a total width of the ornamental component.

[0040] In some embodiments the ring has a first lateral surface and a second, opposite lateral surface, the first rim abutting the first lateral surface and the second rim abutting the second lateral surface, wherein the first rim and/or second rim at least partly are substantially leveled with a bottom of the radial depth of the cut-outs in the radial direction. The lateral surfaces thus define parts of the cavity. Consequently, the rims secure the ring inside the housing and provide a circumferential abutment surface for the ring to abut uniformly in the entire circumference of the ring while the projections extend farther towards the stringing hole than the rims. Also, the parts of the ring beyond the cut-outs may be hidden beyond the rims. When the ornamental component is moved in the axial direction of the elongated member, the ring is preferably supported equally in the circumference of the rims ensuring that the ring is deformed uniformly and no excess abrasion is performed at any specific point on the ring. The rims may generally protect the ring from damage during use, e.g. from coming into contact with freely moving ornamental components on the elongated member. Preferably, a bottom surface of each cut-out is substantially in line with the first and second rims.

[0041] In some embodiments the ring has a width in the axial direction of approximately 1 to 5 mm, preferably 1.5 to 4 mm, more preferred 2 to 3 mm. Preferably, the rims each extends in the axial direction 1/10 to 1/2, more preferred 1/5 to 1/4, of the ring's extent in the axial direction. In some embodiments the first rim and/or second rim has a width in the axial direction of approximately 0.3 mm to 3 mm, preferably 0.5 mm to 2 mm, more preferred 0.6 to 1 mm.

[0042] In some embodiments the cavity substantially has a cylinder shape, an inner circumference of the cavity forming a cylinder shell extending substantially in the axial direction and abutting an outer circumference of the ring.

[0043] The ring may be slightly compressed in the radial direction so as to be tightly secured in the cavity in the radial direction. Consequently, the ring may be secured in the cavity without the use of adhesives.

[0044] In some embodiments each projection comprises a first and a second cut-out side surface defined by the respective adjacent cut-out, said side surfaces being rounded, and each projection may extend in an arc-shape from the bottom surfaces of each cut-out and/or may have a semi-spherical shape with a semi-circular shape in cross sections parallel to and perpendicular to said axial direction. Experiments have shown that this embodiment is especially suited in the above-mentioned cases where the elongated member comprises radial projections or "stoppers", such as for example the threaded stoppers disclosed in Applicant's above-mentioned U.S. Pat. No. 7,007,507. It is believed that the more rounded contact surfaces of the projections have the effect that the risk of destroying the projections when they pass over a stopper is lessened.

[0045] In a second aspect the invention involves a bracelet or a necklace according to claim 16.

[0046] Consequently, an improved ornamental component is provided, where the ornamental component is fixed to the elongated member until a particular force is acting on said ornamental component in the axial direction, whereby the ornamental component can be moved along the elongated member.

[0047] In a third aspect the invention involves a method for manufacturing an ornamental component according to the first aspect of the invention according to claim 17.

[0048] Consequently, an uncomplicated method of manufacturing an ornamental component for adjustable fixation to an elongated member is provided as also described above in relation to the first aspect of the invention. By manufacturing the ring separately from the manufacture of the housing, it is possible to control the amount of friction in the assembled ornamental component. Positioning of the ring inside the housing is uncomplicated, since the ring may fit snugly inside the cavity of the housing, the ring being fixed by the rims. Hereby no other process needs to be applied that might affect the characteristics of the ring and influence optimal or intended functioning of the ornamental component.

[0049] In a fourth aspect the invention involves a set of parts for assembly of an ornamental component according to any of the above embodiments of the first aspect of the invention, according to claim 18.

[0050] The set of parts can be put together to form an ornamental component according to the first aspect of the invention, potentially applying the method according to the method according to the third aspect of the invention.

[0051] A sixth aspect of the invention involves an ornamental component for a bracelet and/or necklace as defined in claim 19.

[0052] The sixth aspect of the invention provides advantages identical or similar to the advantages gained by the first aspect of the invention. The sixth aspect of the invention can be combined with any of the optional features as identified in the above embodiments of the first aspect of the invention.

[0053] The different aspects of the present invention can be implemented in different ways, each yielding one or more of the benefits and advantages described in connection with at least one of the aspects described above, and each having one or more preferred embodiments corresponding to the preferred embodiments described in connection with at least one of the aspects described above and/or disclosed in the dependent claims.

[0054] Furthermore, it will be appreciated that embodiments described in connection with one of the aspects described herein may equally be applied to the other aspects.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0055] The above and/or additional objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be further outlined by the following illustrative and nonlimiting detailed description of embodiments of the present invention, with reference to the appended drawings, wherein:

[0056] FIGS. 1a-c show a ring of an ornamental component according to an embodiment of the present invention.

[0057] FIGS. 2a-c show a housing of an ornamental component according to an embodiment of the present invention.

[0058] FIGS. 3a-b show an ornamental component according to an embodiment of the present invention.

[0059] FIG. 4 shows a ring of an ornamental component according to an embodiment of the present invention.

[0060] FIG. 5 shows a ring of an ornamental component according to an embodiment of the present invention.

[0061] FIG. 6 shows a flowchart of a method for assembly of an ornamental component according to an embodiment of the present invention.

[0062] FIGS. 7a-b show a ring of an ornamental component according to an embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0063] In the following description, reference is made to the accompanying figures, which show by way of illustration how the invention may be practiced.

[0064] In the drawings, different parts and embodiments are denoted from numbers 100 to 700. Those elements of the different parts and embodiments that have identical reference signs except for the first digit are identical to each other except for the potential differences noted so that, for example, ring 100 is similar to ring 400 except for the differences noted in the description of FIG. 4.

[0065] FIGS. 1a-1c show a ring of an ornamental component according to an embodiment of the invention. FIG. 1a shows a front view, FIG. 1b shows a cross-sectional side view and FIG. 1c shows a perspective side view.

[0066] The ring 100 has a circular-cylindrical shape, an inside surface 101 and an inner circumference 101a, which defines a through hole 103 of the ring 100, and an opposite, outside surface 102 and outer circumference 102a. The through hole 103 has a circular-cylindrical shape with a centre coinciding with a centre of the circular ring, an axial direction A extending through these centres and a radial direction B extending in a diametrical direction of the ring 100. The through hole 103 has a diameter 180 of approximately 2.5 mm corresponding to the diameter of the circular inside surface 101.

[0067] The ring 100 is integrally moulded, i.e. moulded in one piece. The ring 100 comprises three cut-outs 140, 150, 160 in the inside surface 101. Each cut-out 140, 150, 160 extends towards the outside surface of the ring 102, the three cut-outs 140, 150, 160 defining associated three inwardly projecting integral projections 110, 120, 130. The projections 110, 120, 130 are used for frictionally gripping a surface of an elongated member of a bracelet and/or necklace (not shown) so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member. The ring 100 has a width 105 in the axial direction of approximately 2.5 mm and an outside diameter 181 of approximately 7 mm.

[0068] The ring 100 has a circular-cylindrical shape with a continuous outer surface 102. As used herein the term "continuous surface" refers to a surface without indentations, openings, crevasses and the like.

[0069] Each projection 140, 150, 160 comprises a first 111, 121, 131 and a second 112, 122, 132 lateral surface defined by the adjacent cut-outs 140, 150, 160. The first 111, 121, 131 and second 112, 122, 132 surfaces are straight, i.e. plane surfaces, and extend substantially in the radial direction B from the through hole 103. Each projection 140, 150, 160 has a semi-circular shape in a cross section parallel to the axial direction A, see FIG. 1b. Each projection 140, 150, 160 in a cross section perpendicular to the axial direction has a concave shape of the inner surface 101, see FIG. 1c. Each projection 110, 120, 130 makes up an accumulated amount of the inner circumference 101a of the ring 100. In the embodiment shown is equal to approximately 240.degree..

[0070] The term width refers to an extent in the axial direction A and the term depth refers to an extent in the radial direction B. A depth 143, 153, 163 of the cut-outs 140, 150, 160 in the radial direction B is about 1/7 of an outer diameter 181 of the ring 100 in the radial direction B. Each cut-out 140, 150, 160 has a respective bottom surface 144, 154, 164. The bottom surfaces 144, 154, 164 extend in the circumferential direction. The diameter of a bottom surface circumference 104a is 4.6 mm and is larger than a diameter 103 of the inner circumference 101a. The bottom surfaces 144, 154, 164 have the same width in the axial direction as the general width 105 of the ring 100.

[0071] The cut-outs 140, 150, 160 are formed by integral moulding of the ring, i.e. they are not "cut out" after moulding of the ring. The cut-outs 140, 150, 160 extend an accumulated amount of the inner circumference 101a of the ring 100 corresponding to an angle of approximately 240.degree..

[0072] The ring 100 is manufactured from a resilient friction material configured to establish a high frictional connection with the elongated member. The resilient material consists of silicone rubber. The modulus of elasticity (Young's modulus) of the material of the ring is about 50 MPa.

[0073] The cut-outs 140, 150, 160 provide improved control of the frictional characteristics of the ring 100. Broader, wider or deeper cut-outs may make the projections more flexible in different directions since the projections are able to expand more in those directions.

[0074] FIGS. 2a-2c show a housing of the ornamental component according to the embodiment of the ring shown in FIGS. 1a-1c. FIG. 2a shows a perspective side view, FIG. 2b shows a front view, and FIG. 2c shows a cross sectional side view taken along the line W-W.

[0075] The housing 200 has a general circular-cylindrical shape. The housing 200 has a first plane-shaped and circular end wall 206, a similar second, opposite plane-shaped and circular end wall 207, a first circular opening 208 in the first end wall 206, a second circular opening 209 in the second end wall 207 and an interior cavity 290 having a circular-cylindrical shape. The first 208 and second 209 openings each extend into said cavity 290, see FIG. 2c. A centre of the cavity 290 is coinciding with the axial direction A extending through the cavity 290 and openings 208, 209 and the radial direction B extending in a diametrical direction of the cavity 290.

[0076] A diameter 280 of the cavity 290 is larger than the corresponding diameters 288, 289 of the first 208 and second 209 openings, respectively, thereby defining a radially extending first projecting rim 276 of the first end wall 206 and a radially extending second projecting rim 277 of the second end wall 207, respectively. The first 276 and second 277 rims extend circumferentially around the first 208 and second 209 openings, respectively.

[0077] The ends 278, 279 of the rims 276, 277 define the radial extent of the openings 208, 209. The rims 276, 277 each have a width in the axial direction of 0.7 mm, the width of the rims 276, 277 defining the width of the cavity 290. The width of the cavity 290 is about 2.5 mm. The cavity 290 has a diameter 280 in the radial direction of about 7.7 mm.

[0078] The housing 200 comprises an integrally moulded metal part 200a, i.e. moulded in a single piece, with an ornamental outer surface 202 provided with ornaments i.e. jewellery stones 295, and projections 296 for retaining the jewellery stones 295 in position. The housing 200 is made of a silver alloy. The ornamental outer surface 202 of the housing 200 constitutes an outer surface 302 of the assembled ornamental component 300 shown in FIGS. 3a and 3b, see further below. The housing 200 is self-supporting and provides the primary structural strength and structural integrity of the ornamental component 300.

[0079] The cavity 290 has a plurality of square apertures 293 positioned in the circumference of the cavity 290, the plurality of apertures 293 being perpendicular to the radial direction B. The plurality of apertures 293 each receive a part of a respective jewellery stone 295, the jewellery stones 295 extending through the plurality of apertures 293 in the radial direction B.

[0080] FIGS. 3a and 3b show an ornamental component 300 according to an embodiment of the first aspect of the invention, which comprises the ring 100 and housing 200 described above. FIG. 3a shows a perspective side view of the ring 100 and housing 200 before assembly, and FIG. 3b shows a perspective view of the assembled ornamental component 300.

[0081] The ornamental component 300 has a stringing hole 303 defining a stringing hole axis C coinciding with the axial direction A, the radial direction B extending radially from the stringing hole axis C. The stringing hole 303 allows the ornamental component 300 to be strung on the elongated member of the bracelet and/or necklace (not shown) along the stringing hole axis C. The ornamental component 300 comprises the ring 100 as shown in FIGS. 1a-1c and the housing 200 as shown in FIGS. 2a-2c.

[0082] The ring 100 is positioned in the cavity 290 of the housing 200. The through hole 103 and the first 208 and second 209 openings define the stringing hole 303. The openings 208, 209 are positioned to be co-axial with the ring 100. The diameter 180 of the through hole 103 in the radial direction B is smaller than the diameters 288, 289 of the first 208 and second 209 openings, respectively. The ring 100 extends between the first 278 and second 279 rims. The outside diameter 181 of the ring 100 is larger than the diameters 288, 289 of the first 288 and second 289 openings. The rims 276, 277 thus secure the ring 100 in the housing 200 in the axial direction A. The jewellery stones 293 of the housing 200 may abut the ring 100 and assist in fixating the ring inside the housing 200, specifically in the circumferential direction.

[0083] The ring 100 has a first lateral surface 106 and a second, opposite lateral surface 107. The first rim 276 abuts the first lateral surface 106. The second rim 277 abuts the second lateral surface 107. The first rim 273 and the second rim 277 abut approximately of the first lateral surface 106 and second lateral surface 107. A bottom surface 144, 154, 164 of each cut-out 140, 150, 160 is substantially in line with the first 176 and second 177 rims.

[0084] An inner circumference of the cavity 290 forming a cylinder shell 291 extends substantially in the axial direction A and abuts the outer surface 202 of the ring 100. The ring 100 is slightly compressed in the radial direction B so as to be secured in the housing 200 in the radial direction B.

[0085] The projections 110, 120, 130 project farther towards the stringing hole 303 than the rims 276, 277. The openings 208, 209 have diameters larger than a diameter of the elongated member so that the rims 276, 277 substantially do not exert any frictional force on the elongated member when the ornamental component 300 moves along the stringing direction. The projections 110, 120, 130 have such characteristics, including shape, size and material characteristics, that they substantially are not deformed in the axial direction A during movement of the ornamental component 300 in the axial direction A along the elongated member.

[0086] The ornamental component 300 may be assembled using an embodiment of the method according to the invention in the following manner. The ring 100 and housing 200 are first manufactured as separate parts. Then the ring 100 is inserted through one of the openings 208, 209 of the housing 200 along the axial direction A as shown by the arrow in FIG. 3a using the resilience of the ring 100 to compress it to fit through the opening's dimensions. The cut-outs 140, 150, 160 make the ring 100 more readily compressible and deformable especially at the inner surface 101 of the ring 100. Assembly using mechanical deformation/compression only is thus possible. When inserted through the opening 208; 209 the ring 100 again expands to fit into the cavity 290. The projecting rims 276, 277 secure the ring 100 inside the housing 200 and the ornamental component 300 may thereby be easily assembled and the ring 100 held in the axial direction A with a minimal use of simple components.

[0087] The ornamental component 300 may be forced to move along the elongated member when strung on this which by exerting a force in the axial direction A, e.g. using a hand.

[0088] The ring 100, the housing 200 and the ornamental component 300 are each substantially symmetrical about a symmetry plane extending in the radial direction B as well as about a symmetry plane extending in the axial direction A. The cut-outs 140, 150, 160 and the projections 110, 120, 130 are of substantially similar shapes and sizes and are distributed substantially evenly in a circumferential direction of the ring 100.

[0089] FIGS. 4 and 5 show front views of alternative embodiments of the ring 100 denoted 400 and 500, respectively. Each of the rings 400 and 500 are identical to the ring 100 except for the differences described in the following.

[0090] In the ring 400 in FIG. 4 the through hole has a diameter of approximately 2.5 mm. The ring 400 comprises four cut-outs 450, 460, 470, 480 in the inside surface 401 of the ring 400. Each cut-out 450, 460, 470, 480 extends towards the outside surface 402 of the ring 400 and defines associated four inwardly projecting integral projections 410, 420, 430, 440. As is the case for the ring 100 the projections 410, 420, 430, 440 are used for frictionally gripping a surface of an elongated member of a bracelet and/or necklace so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member. The ring 400 has a width in the axial direction of approximately 2.5 mm and an outside diameter of approximately 7 mm.

[0091] Each projection 410, 420, 430, 440 comprises a first 411, 421, 431, 441 and a second 412, 422, 432, 442 surface defined by the adjacent cut-outs 450, 460, 470, 480. The first 411, 421, 431, 441 and second 412, 422, 432, 442 surfaces are substantially straight and extend substantially in the radial direction from the through hole 403. Each projection 410, 420, 430, 440 has a semi-circular shape in a cross section parallel to the axial direction A. Each projection 410, 420, 430, 440 in a cross section perpendicular to the axial direction A has a concave shape of the inner surface 401. Each of the projections 410, 420, 430, 440 make up an accumulated amount of the inner circumference 401 of the ring 400 equal to approximately 60.degree..

[0092] A depth 453, 463, 473, 483 of the cut-outs 450, 460, 470, 480 in the radial direction B is 1/10 of a total extent/diameter of the ring 400 in the radial direction B. Each cut-out 450, 460, 470, 480 has a bottom surface 454, 464, 474, 484. The bottom surfaces 454, 464, 474, 484 extend in the same circumference 404a. The diameter of the bottom surface circumference 404a is 4.6 mm and is larger than the diameter 480 of an inside circumference 401a. The bottom surfaces 454, 464, 474, 484 have the same width in the axial direction A as the areas of ring 400 not forming part of the projections 410, 420, 430, 440. The cut-outs 450, 460, 470, 480 are cut into the ring 400 and extend an accumulated amount of the inner circumference 401 of the ring 400 corresponding to an angle of approximately 180.degree..

[0093] In the ring 500 in FIG. 5 the through hole has a diameter of approximately 1 mm. The ring 500 comprises two cut-outs 550, 560 in the inside surface 501 of the ring 500. Each cut-out 550, 560 extends towards the outside surface 502 of the ring 500 and defines associated two inwardly projecting integral projections 510, 520. The ring 500 has a width in the axial direction of approximately 2.5 mm and an outside diameter of approximately 7 mm.

[0094] Each projection 510, 520 comprises a first 511, 521 and a second 512, 522 surface defined by the adjacent cut-outs 510, 520. The first 511, 521 and second 512, 522 surfaces are substantially straight. Each projection 510, 520 has a generally semi-circular shape in a cross section parallel to the axial direction A. Each projection 510, 520 in a cross section perpendicular to the axial direction A has a concave shape of the inner surface 501. Each of the projections 510, 520 makes up an accumulated amount of the inner circumference 501 of the ring 500 equal to approximately 35.degree..

[0095] A depth 553, 563 of the cut-outs 550, 560 in the radial direction B is approximately 1/4 of a total extent/diameter of the ring 500 in the radial direction B. Each cut-out 550, 560 has a bottom surface 554, 564. The bottom surfaces 554, 564 are plane.

[0096] FIG. 6 illustrates an embodiment of the method according to the invention for assembly of the ornamental component 300 according to any one of the above embodiments. In the following each step of the method steps will be described in sequence.

[0097] In step I the housing 200 is manufactured as explained above. In step II the ring 100 is manufactured as explained above. In step III the ring 100 is resiliently compressed in the radial direction B. In step IV the ring 100 is inserted in the cavity 290 of the housing 200 through the first 208 or second 209 opening. In step V the ring 100 is allowed to resiliently expand inside the cavity 290 so that the ring 100 extends between the first 276 and second 277 rims so that the through hole 103 forms part of the stringing hole 303.

[0098] FIGS. 7a and 7b show another alternative embodiment of the ring 100, denoted 700. The ring 700 is identical to the ring 100 except for the differences described in the following.

[0099] The through hole 703 is somewhat smaller than the through hole 103, but may be of the same size, smaller or larger. As is the case for the ring 100 three inwardly projecting integral projections 710, 720, 730 are used for frictionally gripping a surface of an elongated member of a bracelet and/or necklace so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member.

[0100] Each projection 710, 720, 730 comprises an arc-shaped first 711, 721, 731 and an arc-shaped, identical, but opposed, second 712, 722, 732 surface defined by adjacent cut-outs 740, 750, 760. The first 711, 721, 731 and second 712, 722, 732, 742 surfaces are rounded so as to produce archshaped and semi-sphere shaped projections 710, 720, 730. Thus, each projection 710, 720, 730 has a semi-circular arc shape in cross sections both parallel to the axial direction A as shown in FIG. 7b and perpendicular to the axial direction A (as well as when seen from the front view in FIG. 7a). Each projection 710, 720, 730 thus forms an elastic semi-spherical bulb that projects towards a centre of the ring from bottom surfaces 744, 754, 764 of the cut-outs 740, 750, 760, i.e. from bottom circumference 704a. Each of the projections 710, 720, 730 make up an accumulated amount of the bottom circumference 704a equal to approximately 50.degree..

[0101] A depth 743, 753, 763 of the cut-outs 740, 750, 760 in the radial direction B is about 1/6 of a total extent/diameter of the ring 700 in the radial direction B. Each cut-out 740, 750, 760 defines one respective of the cut-out bottom surfaces 754, 764, 774. The bottom surfaces 744, 754, 764 extend in the mutual cut-out bottom surface circumference 704a. The diameter of the bottom surface circumference 704a is about 4.6 mm and is larger than a diameter of the inside circumference 701a.

[0102] The cut-outs 740, 750, 760 are cut into the material of the ring 700 and extend an accumulated amount of the inner circumference 701 of the ring 700 corresponding to an accumulated angle of approximately 210.degree. of the bottom circumference 704a.

[0103] As is the case with any of the previous embodiments, one preferred method of manufacture of the ring 700 is using moulding, wherein the projections 710, 720, 730 are moulded integrally with the ring, i.e. so that the cut-outs 740, 750, 760 are not actually "cut out" from an initial ring, but are rather included as spacings or openings provided between the projections during moulding.

[0104] The embodiment of FIGS. 7a and 7b is especially suitable in cases where the elongated member comprises radial projections or "stoppers" as mentioned in the introduction. It is believed that the more rounded contact surfaces of the projections have the effect that the risk of destroying the projections when they pass over a stopper is lessened.

[0105] In the following, embodiments 1-15 of the present invention are described:

Embodiment 1

[0106] An ornamental component for a bracelet and/or necklace, said ornamental component having a stringing hole defining a stringing hole axis extending in an axial direction, with a radial direction extending radially from the axial direction and a circumferential direction extending about the axial direction, said stringing hole allowing said ornamental component to be strung on an elongated member of a bracelet and/or necklace along said stringing hole axis; said ornamental component comprising: [0107] a housing having an ornamental outer surface, a first end wall, and a second, opposite end wall, and having a first opening in the first end wall, a second opening in the second end wall and an interior cavity, said first and second openings each extending into said cavity and forming part of the stringing hole, where a dimension of the cavity in said radial direction is larger than corresponding dimensions of the first and second openings, the housing thereby extending into a radially extending first projecting rim of the first end wall and a radially extending second projecting rim of the second end wall; and [0108] a ring manufactured from a resilient friction material with an inside surface defining a through hole and an opposite, outside surface, the ring being positioned in said cavity to be encased by the housing, the through hole forming part of the stringing hole and having a smaller dimension in said radial direction than the first and second openings, said ring extending between the first and second rims and having an outside dimension in said radial direction that is larger than said dimensions in said radial direction of the first and second openings so that the rims fix the ring in the axial direction,

[0109] wherein the ring comprises at least two cut-outs in the inside surface of the ring, each cut-out extending towards the outside surface of the ring, said cut-outs defining associated at least two inwardly projecting projections of the ring for frictionally gripping a surface of the elongated member so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member, said cut-outs being fully open to allow the projections to freely resiliently expand in the circumferential direction in an entire radial depth of the cut-outs.

Embodiment 2

[0110] An ornamental component according to embodiment 1, wherein the ring comprises three cut-outs forming also a third inwardly projecting projection of the ring for frictionally gripping the surface of the elongated member.

Embodiment 3

[0111] An ornamental component according to embodiment 2, wherein said three cut-outs extend an accumulated amount of an inner circumference of the ring corresponding to an angle of approximately 210.degree. to 270.degree., preferably 220.degree. to 260.degree., more preferred 230.degree. to 250.degree..

Embodiment 4

[0112] An ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 3, wherein each projection comprises a first and a second cut-out side surface defined by the adjacent cut-outs, the side surfaces being substantially straight and extending substantially in the radial direction from the through hole.

Embodiment 5

[0113] An ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 4, wherein each projection in a cross section parallel to the axial direction has a convex shape.

Embodiment 6

[0114] An ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 5, wherein each cut-out has a depth dimension in the radial direction that is 1/10 to 1/4 of a total extent of the ring in the radial direction.

Embodiment 7

[0115] An ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 6, wherein the first rim and/or second rim extend(s) circumferentially around the first opening and/or second opening, respectively.

Embodiment 8

[0116] An ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 7, wherein the ring has a first lateral surface and a second, opposite lateral surface, the first rim abutting the first lateral surface and the second rim abutting the second lateral surface, wherein the first rim and/or second rim at least partly are substantially leveled with a bottom of the radial depth of the cut-outs in the radial direction.

Embodiment 9

[0117] An ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 8, wherein the ring has a width in the axial direction of approximately 1 to 5 mm. preferably 1.5 to 4 mm, more preferred 2 to 3 mm.

Embodiment 10

[0118] An ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 9, wherein the first rim and/or second rim has an width in the axial direction of approximately 0.3 mm to 3 mm, preferably 0.5 mm to 2 mm, more preferred 0.6 to 1 mm.

Embodiment 11

[0119] An ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 10, wherein the cavity substantially has a cylinder shape, an inner circumference of the cavity forming a cylinder shell extending substantially in the axial direction and abutting an outer circumference of the ring.

Embodiment 12

[0120] A bracelet or a necklace comprising: [0121] an elongated member; and [0122] an ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 11 and a number of freely movable beads strung on said elongated member;

[0123] wherein the ornamental component is configured so that the projections resiliently grip the surface of the elongated member to adjustably fix the ornamental component along the elongated member.

Embodiment 13

[0124] A method for manufacturing an ornamental component according to any one of embodiments 1 to 11, comprising the steps of: [0125] providing the housing; [0126] providing the ring; [0127] resiliently compressing said ring in the radial direction; and [0128] inserting said ring in said cavity through the first or second opening; and [0129] allowing the ring to resiliently expand inside said cavity so that said ring extends between the first and second rims so that the through hole forms part of the stringing hole.

Embodiment 14

[0130] A set of parts for assembly of an ornamental component according to any one embodiments 1 to 11, comprising: [0131] a housing having an ornamental outer surface, a first end wall, and a second, opposite end wall, and having a first opening in the first end wall, a second opening in the second end wall and an interior cavity, said first and second openings extending towards each other into said cavity, where a dimension of the cavity in said radial direction is larger than corresponding dimensions of the first and second openings, the housing thereby extending into a radially extending first projecting rim of the first end wall and a radially extending second projecting rim of the second end wall; and [0132] a ring manufactured from a resilient friction material with an inside surface defining a through hole and an opposite outside surface, the ring having a smaller dimension in said radial direction than the first and second openings and an outside dimension in said radial direction that is larger than said dimensions in said radial direction of the first and second openings of the housing, the ring being resiliently compressible in said radial direction so as to be adapted for being inserted in a resiliently compressed state through the first or second opening and then expand to assume a fixed position in said cavity so that the through hole forms part of the stringing hole and so that said ring extends between the first and second radially projecting rims,

[0133] wherein the ring comprises at least two cut-outs in the inside surface of the ring, each cut-out extending towards the outside surface of the ring, said cut-outs defining associated at least two inwardly projecting projections of the ring for frictionally gripping a surface of the elongated member so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member.

Embodiment 15

[0134] An ornamental component for a bracelet and/or necklace, comprising a housing with an ornamental surface with a cavity defining projecting rims of end walls of the housing, said rims surrounding openings in the end walls, a ring manufactured from a resilient friction material positioned in said cavity, wherein the ring comprises at least two cut-outs in an inside surface of the ring, said cut-outs defining associated at least two inwardly projecting projections of the ring for frictionally gripping a surface of an elongated member of the bracelet and/or necklace so as to adjustably fix the ornamental component at selected positions along the elongated member, an entirety of the cut-outs being free of material.

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