1880 – Armored Diving Suit – Stephen P. M. Tasker (American)

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1880 – Armored Diving Suit by Stephen P. M. Tasker. An interesting pose for a patent drawing. Anyone wanting a Mechanical Man costume would be inspired by this.

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Diving Apparatus

Publication number    US236858 A
Publication type    Grant
Publication date    Jan 18, 1881
Filing date    Jun 21, 1880
Inventors    Stephen P. M. Tasker

Heretofore in diving apparatus shaped to the human body it has been difficult to combine with the requisite flexibility of material a rigidity or stiffness sufficient to resist at every portion of the armor the external pressure of the water without re-enforcing or aiding the material of which the apparatus is composed by pumping within it a supply of atmospheric air not only sufficient to ensure life to the diver, but also sufficient to counteract, balance, and resist the external pressure of the water.

The object of my invention is the construction of such an armor, suit, or apparatus as shall overcome this difficulty, and be of itself of sufficient strength to resist at its every portion the external pressures without re-enforcement by an over-supply of internal air, and shall at the same time be of sufficient flexibility to permit the requisite movements of the diver.

It further has for its object a better construction of the armor-lifting devices, whereby the strains in lowering and lifting the apparatus out of the water are not, as heretofore, confined to one portion of the armor, but are distributed more equally over it, so as to act not only upon the head and trunk portions, but also upon the legs, and thereby take from off the joints the strains heretofore imposed upon them in the elevation and lowering of the apparatus.

It further has for its object such an arrangement of the air inlet and exhaust tubes as concentrates them into one and prevents the complexity and entanglement incident to the old arrangements and, further, such a construction of the suit as enables it to be easily put on and taken off; and, finally, such an arrangement of the air-tubes that by the application of suitable floats they are kept continuously elevated and out of the way of the diver.

Tasker soon followed up with another patent, essentially the same but without the metal sections.

Publication number    US237141 A
Publication type    Grant
Publication date    Feb 1, 1881
Filing date    Nov 13, 1880
Inventors    Stephen P. M. Tasker

My invention relates to that class of submarine diving suits or armors which are conformed to the shape of the human body and composed of unjointed sections connected together by flexible joints corresponding to the joints of the body, the unjointed sections being rigid and the joints composed of flat rings covered by flexible material, arranged in bellows structure and united to the contiguous rigid sections.

A diving-armor of the character above referred to was first invented by me, and forms the subject-matter of an application for patent which was executed by me on the 15th day of June, 1880, and filed in the United States Patent Office on the 21st day of June, 1880.

In my former invention the flexible material which formed the bellows portions of the armor extended over the unjointed metallic sections, so as to be practically continuous over the entire suit.

My present invention accords in structure and arrangement of joints with my former invention and it consists in a diving suit or armor conformed to the shape of the human body and composed of unjointed sections of hardened rubber or kindred material and of connecting bellows-joints of pliable rubber or kindred material, the metal sections of my former invention being dispensed with.


See other early Underwater Robots here.


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