US 2421478 A
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June 3, 1947. BLEWETT 2,421,478
FIBER CONDITIONER Filed Dec. 21, 1945 2 Sheets-Sheet l June 3, 1947. J, BLEWETT 2,421,478
FIBER CONDITIONER Filed Dec. 21, 1945 2 Sheets-Shet 2 I l: W. .m
Z :Em mL Patented June 3, 1947 FIBER CONDITIONER John Blewett, Dallas, Tex., assignor to The Murray Company, Dallas, Tex.
Application December 21, 1943, Serial No. 515,095
This invention relates to new and useful improvements in fiber conditioners and particularly cotton cleaners.
One object of the invention is to provide, an improved fiber conditioner which efficiently and thoroughly conditions fiber by removing therefrom extraneous matter, such as green leaf, in a substantially whole or intact state, whereby breaking of the extraneous matter and admixing of the same with said fiber is reduced to a minimum.
An important object of the invention is to provide an improved fiber conditioner, such as a cotton cleaner, having means for accommodating the discharge of extraneous matter separated from the fiber in a substantially whole or intact state, there being means for urging the extraneous matter toward and through the discharge means so as to materially decrease the length of time necessary for conditioning the fiber.
A particular object of the invention i to provide an improved fiber conditioner having a discontinuous, grate-type cleaning surface with rotating elements adjacent to and coacting therewith for receiving the fiber therebetween so as to separate and discharge extraneous matter from said fiber, together with means for inducing an air current or stream through the conditioner for urging the extraneous matter into and maintaining the same in engagement with the cleaning surface, whereby said extraneous matter will be separated from the fiber and forced through the discontinuations of said cleaning surface by the interdependent coaction of the cleaning surface, elements and air stream.
Another object of the invention is to provide a fiber conditioner, of the character described, having a cleaning chamber which includes an improved cleaning surface of the discontinuous, grate-type having openings for discharging small extraneous matter and for receiving portions of larger extraneous matter separated from the fiber, the cleaning surface also having additional openings disposed transversely of and communicating with the first-named openings for receiving the larger extraneous matter therefrom and discharging the same from the cleaning chamber, said extraneous matter being urged into and through the openings by an air stream or current.
A further object of the invention is to provide an improved cleaning surface for the cleaning chamber of a fiber conditioner, which surface includes a plurality of longitudinally and transversely spaced fingers extending longitudinally of the chamber and forming openings for accommodating the discharge from said chamber of extraneous matter separated from the fiber, the extraneous matter of greater area than the longitudinal openings being moved along the fingers by the wiping action of rotating elements toward the transverse openings for discharge therethrough by an air stream or current.
Still another object of the invention is to provide an improved fiber conditioner, of the character described, wherein green leaf and other extraneous matter are removed from the fiber in a minimum amount of time and with a minimum amount of cleaning action by th coaction of a cleaning surface, a rotating element and a downwardly-directed air current, whereby the efficiency of the conditioner is materially increased without enlarging the size thereof or the number of rotating elements and without depending upon the beating action of the elements so as to eliminate roping, twisting and machining of the fiber; the extraneous matter being preferably wilted to a soft, flexible or pliable condition prior to the introduction of the fiber into said conditioner and the air being preferably dry and hot.
A construction designed to carry out the invention will be hereinafter described together with other features of the invention.
The invention will be more readily understood from a reading of the following specification and by reference to the accompanying drawings, wherein an example of the invention shown, and wherein:
Figure 1 is a longitudinal sectional View of a fiber conditioner or cotton cleaner constructed in accordance with the invention,
Figure 2 is an enlarged plan view of a transverse portion of the cleaning surface of the cleaning chamber,
Figure 3 is an enlarged elevation of a portion of one of the longitudinal reinforcing members. showing the adjustable mounting of the sleeve sections which carry the fingers of the cleaning surface, and
Figure 4 is an enlarged, isometric view of one of the fingers and showing the relation thereof to its sleeve section.
In the drawings, the numeral ii! designates a conditioner or cleaner which is adapted to clean cotton and which may be of any desired construction, such as the horizontal cylinder type. The cleaner includes a chamber H into one end of which the cotton to be cleaned is introduced through a suitable inlet [2. A plurality of spaced, horizonta1 cleaning cylinders or elements is are mounted transversely within the chamber and are disposed over concave cleaning surfaces i4, each surface being swung on an arc substantially concentric to the'shaft of'its respective cylinder and coacting with the other surfaces to form an undulating bottom for the chamber H. The cylinders rotate in a counter-clockwise direction .so as to carry the cotton from the inlet I2 over the cleaning surfaces [4 to a suitable discharge outlet l5 which communicates with the far-or .op-.
posite end of the chamber. Although .thelcyllinders may be of any suitable construction, .the
4 pending application, Serial No. 515,094, filed De cember 21, 1943.
Each cleaning surface is of the discontinuous, grate-type and includes a plurality of arcuate fingers or elements 26 which are circular in crosssection and which are preferably swung on an arc of greater radius than the cylinders l3. As is clearly shown in Figure 2, the fingers are disposed in spaced, parallel rows which extend transversely of or across the cleaning chamber II and each finger is preferably disposed in the same vertical plane as the contiguous fingers of the adjacent rows, whereby said fingers are alined. Each transverse row of' fingerszis welded or otherwise secured to a sleeve 2 i (Fig.3) which is journaled or telescoped upon an elongate, transverse bolt or rod 22. If desired, each sleeve 2| I ..may.be.divided into several relatively short sections-23, although each bolt 22 extends entirely same are preferably of the'type shown inUnited landlthe outlet] 5 .for preventing :the discharge of -airflfromnsaid chamberwith the cotton.
.This-.air is}de1i-vere'd. to the. chamber in acurrent orestream bymeansof a. pipe .(not shown) which, communicates -witha transition H, .the -.transition j.being connected. to. a fiaredlhood or spreader'llii. which rin= .turn overlies. the .cleaner andcommunicates with. said chamber. It is -pointed out j'thatjthe spreaderisof .suehsize as to.communicate.directlyxwith the major portion of'..'the cross-sectional area of. the .chamber. ii, thereby causingltheair current to be, spread substantially .throughoutthe...entire .area .of said Chamber. .charge-Jduct' .(notshown) connected-thereto, is connected-tothe-lbottom :of the cleaner so .as .to communicate with the: chamber for receiving theair which flows ;therethrough.,andsptheextraneous-1malttervseparated' from the r cotton-z.;and -passing-rthroughtthe Icleaning esurfaces Q.
.arfrequently,..ithe'; cotton to be cleaned is :seedcotton'iwhi'ch hasz-beengathered -or-harvested by mechanicalapparatuses" and consequently contains an excessive quantity-of g-reen'leaves as -vvellas other "extraneous '"matter. "Although a cleaner'of the standard type will satisfactorily remove-most of the. extraneous:matter. from [the 'cotton,"said'cleaners are ineffective .insofar as the removal of the green leaves .is concerned. wInioroler to efficiently remove these green leaves as Well as other largeextraneous matterwithout damaging the-.cotton,..such .as .byexcessive roping, twistingand -machining,-a newtypeof cleaning-surface-has been conceived.- and will hereinafterbe-moreiully described. It has been-found that the efficiency of a cleaner having such a cleaning surface is. increased by reducing the green; :leaves: and: other extraneous matter to. a soft, flexible or,pliable-'. condition and this may beLaccomplished :by. :drying the cotton so as to wilt saidileaves. it is also noted that it is desirable for the air stream within thecleaning chamberll tobe'relativelydryand hot so'as toffurther Wilt"the leaves'within said chamber. If'desired, this air'may be the. same air that is used to'dry the cotton and which is subsequently separated from. said. cotton -as. shown in. my co- A..suitable. hopper 19, having a.-.dis-
.across' the cleaning chamber with the usual head .24 formedon one end and a nut 25 screw-threaded. uponthe other end thereof.
*In'order to support the bolts 22 and to permit the usewof relatively small diameter material, a plurality of thin, vertical, plates or ribs 26 extend longitudinally beneaththe. chamber: Ii in spaced, parallel. relationship ,and. .-have. suitable spaced openings 'formed adjacent -theirrpner marginal edge, portions for. receiving rsaidtbolts. As is clearly showniniEigureB, thempnermarginal edge portionofleach rib-261s, complementary .to the concave. ,eleaningsurfaces.4A, being undulating. so as. to. have concave,.por.tions. 2l.
The are of. each portion; 21.. isv .Of. greater. radius than the radius of itsove'rlyingcylinder, 13,.and of lesser radius 'than'the arc of its underlying cleaning surface or, the fingers. 2fi,..whereby. said portion .is' interposed.therebetween. [The ribs; 26 extend entirely aerossthe chamber, beyond...the
.open upper end, of thephopperle and. preferably have. their ends connected to theJen'd. Walls. of the cleaner.
"For vertically. adjustingthe'fingers, a short'fiat arm or ear'28 is mountedoneach end of...ea'ch sleeve se'c'ti0n123 so .as to extendcontiguous-an'd parallel to the ribs26. .Aitransverse.jslot'j29 is formed'in the outer or freeend .ofea'charmI 28 for receiving a short bolt30,,.which. also. extends through a: suitable opening formedin the rib, coniiguous to. said arm. Althoughiithese openings are disposed adjacent theiupper mar' inalndge portion of their respective ribs, each opening .is locatedtbelow its respective large'tboltopening. Thus, the position of the'fingersmay' be adjusted by'moving the arms 28 relative'to'the b'o'ltsififlaiid thebolts which pass throughthe'. intermediate ribs'may. each receive apair of arms, oneonea'ch side of each rib for adjustablyjfasteninglthesame to said'rib. Duetto' the undulating ,uppenmarginal edge portions of the iribsyitis manifest that neither the large b'olt'openings norlithesho'rt bolt openings are horizontally alind. i. However, the corresponding openingsoflfthe'ribs .areiin transverse, axial alinement' and the. corresponding openings. of each rib .are" horizontallyalind, whereby the cleaning surfaces 14 are identiealras are the portions of each surface betweensaid ribs.
Each finger 2 0 'is.of such length Lthat the. outer ends of thefingersoflea'ch row. will barelyblear the inner por'tionsof ,the alined fingers-of the contiguous, .parallel row .which-are .fastenedito the adjacent sleevesection 23;.saidfreelor outer ends being .preferably .lbevelled upwardly and sou-twardly as shown at 32. It is noted thatithe most desirable position of the fingers is best shown in Figure 3, wherein the bevelled end 32 of each finger is spaced a slight distance above the inner portion of the contiguous finger of the adjacent row so that a contracting throat or space 33 is provided therebetween for accommodating the passage of green leaves as-well as other large extraneous matter. Manifestly, this position of the fingers is attained by properly adjusting the arms 2e. Attention is directed to the fact that the contracting spaces are accentuated by the projecting portions of the cylinders I3 which pass in close proximity thereto.
As has been hereinbefore set forth, the seedcotton, frequently containing green leaves and other large extraneous matter which are preferably in a soft, flexible or pliable condition, is delivered to the cleaning chamber H of the cleaner I through the inlet [2 and passes to the left of and beneath the left-end cylinder [3. The counter-clockwise rotation of the cylinders carries or causes the cotton to travel longitudinally and toward the right of the chamber, over the cleaning surfaces l4 and beneath said cylinders. During this movement of the cotton, the motes, dirt and other small extraneous matter or trash will fall through the longitudinal spaces between the fingers 20. The green leaves, being larger than the spaces between the fingers, ordinarily will not pass through said spaces; however, the air which fiows vertically through the chamber from the spreader I8 to the hopper l9 will cause the leaves to adhere or cling to the fingers so that portions of each individual leaf will be forced partially into these longitudinal spaces. flexible or pliable condition of the green leaves, very little force is required to bend or fold each leaf upon itself and the air stream has sufficient force to accomplish such bending or folding. Thus, it is manifest that a considerable proportion of the leaves will be bent or folded and forced through the longitudinal spaces of the cleaning surfaces It instead of adhering or clin ing to the fingers. Obviously, the wilting of the leaves will tend to prevent the same from bridging the fingers so as to permit discharge of the same. If relatively hot air, approximately 180 F., is employed for a short period of time, as is preferable, it will tend to further increase the flexibility of the leaves. The wiping action of the cleaning cylinders will move each green leaf, which bridges the fingers, longitudinally of said fingers, from the ends of which said leaf will be shed or stripped and drawn through the contracting throats 33 by the air current. Of course, other large extraneous matter or trash also will be forced together with the wilted green leaves through the throats 33 and the longitudinal spaces by the combined action of the downwardly-directed air current and the counterclockwise rotation or wiping action of the cleaning cylinders. Thus, the seed-cotton will be thoroughly cleaned by the time it reaches the vacuum wheel I and is discharged through the outlet l5. The leaves and other extraneous matter which pass through the cleaning surfaces l4 drop into the hopper l9 and are carried by the air current through a discharge duct (not shown) which communicates with said hopper.
From the foregoing, it is readily apparent that mechanically-gathered cotton is efficiently and thoroughly cleaned by the conditioner or cleaner which has been described hereinbefore. Although it is preferable to employ the same air for drying the cotton and for subjecting said cotton while Due to the soft,
passing through the cleaner to an air stream or suction, the air for the latter purpose could be obtained from any source so long as it was relatively dry and hot. The co-action of the downward blast. or current of air and the discontinuous, grate-type cleaning surface together with the wiping action of the cleaning cylinders are the most important and essential elements of the cleaner and could not be successfully eliminated without the substitution of an equivalent arrangement. Of course, the wilting of the green leaves to a soft, flexible or pliable condition is also advantageous, as it tends to prevent said leaves from bridging th fingers, and might be accomplished by any suitable means. This wilting of the leaves facilitates the removal or separation thereof from the cotton in a substantially intact or whole condition, whereby breaking and powdering of said leaves and consequent admixing of the same with the cotton is reduced to a minimum. Obviously, the efiiciency of the cleaning action decreases the time thereof, whereby the relative size of the cleaner or the number of cleaning cylinders may be reduced and whereby roping, twisting and machining of the cotton is substantially eliminated. Also, the necessity for the conventional beating action of the cleaning cylinders is obviated, because it is the wiping action of said cylinders which is essential. All of these features are interdependent and coact to produce the new and improved result. Although the cleaner is primarily designed for the cleaning of mechanically-gathered cotton, the same could be employed to clean the usual handpicked cotton or other fiber.
The foregoing description of the invention is explanatory thereof and various changes in the size, shape and materials, as well as in the details of the illustrated construction may be made, within the scope of the appended claims, without departing from the spirit of the invention.
What I claim and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:
1. A cleaner for cotton admixed with green leaves includin an elongate cleaning chamber open longitudinally throughout the major portion of its top, grate-type arcuate cleaning surfaces disposed in transverse parallel rows longitudinally along the bottom of said chamber, revolving cleaners disposed in the chamber transversely of and above the rows of cleaning surfaces, a, major portion of said cylinders being below the top opening, and means for directing a current of air downwardly into the chamber from said top opening onto and between said cylinders for urging extraneous matter through said surfaces.
2. A cleaner as set forth in claim 1, and means at the discharge end of the chamber for preventing the escape of air to cause substantially all of the air to pass down through the grates.
3. A fiber conditioner including, a cleaner having a chamber, means within the chamber for separating extraneous matter from fiber, th'e separating means having a discontinuous cleaning surface and rotating means disposed adjacent to and coacting with the cleaning surface for receiving the fiber and extraneous matter therebetween, the rotating means moving said fiber and extraneous matter along said cleaning surface, and means for subjecting the fiber and extraneous matter to a current of air directly downward throughout the major portion of the length of the cleaning surface to urge the extraneous matter onto said cleaning surface and through the same