How DUCS® work

How DUCS Work Exhibit I AExhibit I A: Prototype DUCS® harness. On the left an attached “bridle” is intended for attachment to buttons in trousers. Right side shows lower unit (and an optional “Jaw Clamp” lower unit), in an unattached mode. How DUCS Work Exhibit I BExhibit I B: Shows the DUCS® harness on user. (Positioning of attachment points may vary with user build or if heavy items are worn on belt or in pockets.)

A major disadvantage of conventional suspenders (and clothing with built-in suspenders) arises from the fact that, when worn under one or more outer garments, it is necessary to first remove those outer garments before the trousers (the garment being held up by the suspenders) can be lowered or removed. This is because conventional suspenders attach to the trousers in three or four places, one or more of which is at the rear of the wearer and difficult to reach. To lower one's trousers, all outer clothing must be removed, and one's arms slipped back through the suspenders, allowing the trousers to drop. A secondary consequence is that this then allows the suspender straps to lay on the floor (not desirable in a dirty, wet rest room).

How DUCS Work Exhibit II AExhibit II A: Shows cross over in rear. In this version, the straps pass through an adjustable, sliding connector. How DUCS Work Exhibit II BExhibit II B: Shows DUCS® harness, viewed from the side. Note the strap in the back attaches to top buckle.

Detachable, Under Clothing Suspenders (DUCS®) is a new type of breakaway suspender harness system that eliminates this problem by providing for a suspender harness which will remain on the wearer when disconnected from the lower parts of the harness which is connected to the trousers or other lower garment(s) (waders, foul weather pants, wet suits, ski pants, protective pants, overalls, etc.) which are to be held up by the suspenders. The lower part of the harness is semi-permanently or permanently connected to the trousers by way of an attachment at two or four points, with a quick release provision, that allows the harness to breakaway and detach from the trousers, even if several layers of outer clothing are being worn, permitting the trousers to be lowered or removed while the wearer continues to wear the harness. Chemical Protective pants could be put on AFTER the outer garments and gear are in place.

In its "universal version" the lower part of the quick release buckle attaches to the trousers with conventional spring loaded jaw clamps at either two points (at about 2-3 o'clock and 9-10 o'clock) or four points (at about 4 and 2 o'clock on one side and at about 8 and 10 o'clock on the other). The four point attachment serves to distribute the lifting force of the DUCS® and more uniformly carry the load of heavy trousers or outer pants or when heavy items are carried on the belt or in the pockets. The attachment devise(s) on either side are connected to the lower part (by a "bridle" in the four point version) of a quick release buckle which mates to the upper part of said buckle. (See Exhibit I). In the simplest version, the straps cross in the back (where they are connected to one another in a variety of fashions) and pass under the user's arms and then attach back on to the upper part of the quick release clip, creating a harness effect, similar to a shoulder holster. (see Exhibit II)

How DUCS Work Exhibit III AExhibit III A: Shows the right side being released under a sweater. How DUCS Work Exhibit III BExhibit III B: Shows both sides released with harness in place, under sweater.

This completes the "harness" and keeps the unit on the user when it is disconnected from the trousers. Unlike conventional suspenders, there is no tendency for the straps to slide off the shoulders. Because there is no attachment in the rear, there is no binding when one bends forward, making these suspenders much more comfortable, as well as far more practical.

In each mode, it is possible to use elastic or no-elastic material, or a combination. When used with non-elastic straps, a tensioning and releasing adjustment, at the front, is envisioned, to facilitate putting on by putting the users arm through the strap.

When the wearer wishes to lower his or her trousers, with outer garments in place, the wearer simply pulls up or opens the outer garment sufficient to expose the quick release clips, un-clip them from the lower part which is connected to the trousers, leaving the suspender harness in place. When the trousers are raised the clips are re-attached and the outer clothing pulled back down. (See Exhibit III).

A unique feature of this concept is that it will work with virtually all types of trousers, without modification, and with most outer garments.

The lower quick release clip can be attached to a standard spring loaded jaw clip(s) (See Exhibit I), or to any number of devises to attach the system to the trousers, for example, a strap "bridle" designed to fit onto buttons provided or installed in the trousers, as shown in Exhibit I. This latter form of attachment can support the trousers at four points. Alternatively, a "continuous" form of attachment could be provided by sewing in a triangular piece of fabric along several inches of the waistline, the upper part of the triangular piece being connected to the lower part of the quick release buckle. Such a fabric piece could also be attached with a zipper and could be made to also cover the lower back area. This form of attachment may be best for waist high garments designed specifically for use with DUCS® such as waders, foul weather or construction pants, ski pants, etc.( Note: See separate section for use with chest high, "bib" type garments) It could also be attached to a belt which requires added support, as may be the case with construction workers, police men or military personnel who may attach tools, guns and other heavy appurtenances to the belts which are attached to the trousers. They could also be attached to "work belts" which hold tools, etc., but are not attached to trousers.

As the quick release buckle consists of an upper part semi-permanently or permanently secured to the harness, multiple garments with compatible lower buckles can have the lower part of the quick release buckle permanently attached, if desirable. It should be emphasized that the essence of the system is a quick release system that allows the harness to easily breakaway from the lower part (and the trousers or pants) allowing the pants, which can be of totally conventional design, to be lowered or completely removed, while the harness remains on the user.