Humans frequently wear metal adornments that have a small chance of being caught on something. Under most circumstances, this is fine, but occasionally this may lead to situations with a high probability of disaster (e.g. operating a lathe while wearing a dangly necklace).
Somehow, it is still the case that very little jewelry has a “break-away” safety feature that ensures that the object will disassemble itself before the attached body part is disassembled—generally, the situation that arises is the one shown in Figure 1.
This is surprising, since “break-away safety connector” has existed for decades, in:
- Kitchen counter hot-water boilers, which often have a magnetically-attached power cord.
- The Apple “MagSafe” laptop connector that (usually) disconnects if someone trips over the power cord.
- The 2001 Microsoft Xbox wired controller’s break-away cable.
But for whatever reason, search terms like “break-away earring,” “magnetic safety earring,” and “Apple MagSafe connector earring” seem to indicate that break-away safety earrings are not a product under widespread commercial production!
The proposal is simple and low-cost: simply add a magnetic safety section to earrings, jewelry, ties, rings, and other adornments that might be caught on something.
As shown in Figure 2, this break-away safety section will detach if pulled with sufficient force, reducing the likelihood of disaster.
Although earrings are the most immediately obvious application of this type of safety connector, it would also be feasible for:
- Rings (see The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King for a situation in which this would have been useful)
- Ties (see Who Framed Roger Rabbit for a situation where this would have been useful)
- Capes (see The Incredibles for a situation where this would have been useful)
PROS: Saves the wearer from experiencing traumatic unscheduled disassembly.
CONS: Significantly increases the chance of losing the earring / ring in question. But this is a small price to pay!