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Publication numberUS2510400 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 6, 1950
Filing dateOct 8, 1948
Priority dateOct 8, 1948
Publication numberUS 2510400 A, US 2510400A, US-A-2510400, US2510400 A, US2510400A
InventorsHurley Frederick A
Original AssigneeHurley Frederick A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Ice-cube dispensing machine
US 2510400 A
Abstract  available in
Images(5)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 6, 1 950 A. 'HURLEY 2,510,400

1cm CUBE nIsPENsIm-mcam'r:

Filed Oct. 8, 1948 5 Sheets-Sheet 1 ITWEME Y3 June 6, 1950 F. A. HURL'EY 2,510,400

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AITOBIVE 9S June 6, 1950 0 F. A. HURLEY 2,510,400

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INVENTOR.

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ICE CUBE DISPENSING MACHINE 5 Sheets-Sheet 4 I30 I32 24 53 A INVENTOR.

. r E-eden'ckA Illa-k9 ATTOKEV- June 6, 1950 F. A. HURLEY 2,510,400

ICE cuss msmsmc MACHINE Filed Oct 8, 1948 5 Shets-Sheet 5 IN V EN TOR.

Patented June 6, 1950 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE ICE-CUBE DISPENSING MACHINE Frederick A. Hurley, Miami, Fla.

13 Claims.

The present invention relates to improvements in ice cube dispensing machines, and has for an object to provide a machine for freezing and delivering ice in cube or other form in adequate quantities directly to drinking glasses or other containers, more particularly for use in the home, in bars, restaurants, drug stores and the like places where iced beverages are apt to be mixed and served.

It is another object of the invention to provide an ice cube dispensing machine so compactly constructed and arranged as to admit of its inclusion in a home or other electric refrigerator without interfering with the normal service of such refrigerator, and in which delivery of the ice cubes is had without requiring the opening of the general refrigerator door.

A further object of the invention resides in providing an ice cube dispensing machine incorporated into a refrigerator or other housing having an ice cube delivery door which on opening controls the delivery of one or more ice cubes, without handling, directly to a receptacle held in front of the door, and in which the door acts as the controlling member for one or more electric switches designed to set in motion the machinery by which water is delivered to movable cups or containers in which the water is subsequently frozen into the ice cubes, advanced through the machine to an exit point and there delivered to a delivery chute by which the formed and frozen ice cubes are directed to and through the open dispensin door and into the receptacle held in the hand of the operator below such dispensing door.

The invention has for its further objects and purposes the provision of a combined conveyor and freezing chamber with means to advance the ice cube receptacles carried by the conveyor in a step by step motion through such freezing chamher from an origin point where an automatic mechanism delivers precooled water to the receptacles to a delivery point where the ice cubes are loosened from the walls of the receptacles and eventually pinched out of the receptacles to the delivery chute, in the provision of a novel form of motor by which the conveyor is given this step by step actuating movement, and in the provision of an improved electric arrangement by which solenoids are controlled for actuating in a proper sequence and timed relationship the delivery of the precooled water to the conveyor cube receptacles and the intermittent actuation of the conveyor. 7

Application October 8, 1948, Serial No. 53,407

2v the invention will be hereinafter more fully described and more particularly pointed out in the appended claims.

In the drawings in which like or corresponding parts are denoted by the same reference characters throughout the several views Figure 1 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view taken through a refrigerator structure showing one form of ice cube dispensing machine constructed according to the present invention.

Figure 2 is a vertical section taken on an enlarged scale through the water delivery mechanism.

Figure 3 is a side elevational view of the ice cube container conveyor showing the ejecting device, delivery chute and dispensing door in section.

Figure .4 is a top plan view of a form of conveyor employed.

Figure 5 is a fragmentary longitudinal section through a portion of the conveyor showing a form of ice cube container.

Figure 6 is a perspective view of a pyramidal form of ice cube container.

Figure '7 is a similar view of a frusto-conical form of ice cube container.

Figure 8 is a circuit diagram showing one arrangement for actuating the various devices in a predetermined sequence of a selected cycle of operations.

Figure 9 is an end elevational view of the conveyor.

Figure 10 is an end elevational view of the ejecting and delivery mechanism taken on the line Ill-l0 inFigure 3.

Figure 11 is a transverse sectional view taken on the line il--li of Figure 3.

Figure 12 is a front elevational view of a delivery door and associated electrical control switches.

Figure 13 is an enlarged front elevational view, taken on an enlarged scale, showing the lower door switch.

Figure 14 is a horizontal section taken on an enlarged scale through the driving motor and gear assembly units.

Figure 15 is a longitudinal vertical section taken on the line l5 I5 in Figure 14 through the gear assembly unit.

Figure 16 is a similar view taken on the line lG-IG of Figure 14 showing the conveyor'driving motor unit.

Figure 17 is a fragmentary section of a detail of an adiusting set screw.

with the foregoing and other objects in view I! ,Figure 18 is a fragmentary vertical section 3 through a portion of the motor unit showing the pawl and ratchet mechanism.

Figure 19 is a similar view showing the pawl slot in the motor casing wall.

Figure 20 is also a fragmentary vertical section through a portion of the motor unit showing the locking dog.

Figure 21 is a perspective view, with parts broken away and parts shown in section, of the motor unit.

Figures 22 and 23 are inner face views of the two sections of the motor casing.

Figures 24 and 25 are similar views of the two sections of the gear assembly housing.

Figure 26 is a cross section through one section of the conveyor showing the ejector bars squeezin the ice cube from the container.

Referring more particularly to the drawings 25 designates a wall of a domestic or other refrigerator or housing in which the machine is contained either by incorporation in the original manufacture of the refrigerator or housing or by subsequent installation of the machine as a unit in the existing construction; and 26 indicates a tank or reservoir for precooled supply of water. The water in the tank 26 may be precooled by virtue of its inclusion in the refrigerating space of the refrigerator, or in the case of an unrefrigerated housing, such water may be precooled by a refrigerating coil 21 extending about or in other refrigerating relationship to the tank 26.

Adjacent the water supply tank 26 is a measuring dispensing chamber 28 which communicates with the main tank 26 through ports 29 and 30 in adjacent but spaced walls 3| and 32 of the tank 26 and chamber 28 respectively. In the space between the walls a vertically reciprocating valve 33 is fitted having a cross port 34 adapted in the lowered position to register with the ports 29 and 38. The port 3|! is deeper vertically than the companion port 29 and is opened in the upper position of the valve 33 to a discharge nozzle 35 by means of a removed lower corner section 36 of the valve 33.

The valve 33 is biased to its upper position by a coil spring 31 mounted in the refrigerator housing 25 and connected to the armature 38 of the solenoid 39. A non-magnetic shaft 40 extends through the solenoid 39 and connects the armature 38 with the valve 33 which valve is also of non-magnetic material.

The spring 31 by contraction tends to lift the valve 33 to the position where its cross port 34 is masked by the blank walls 3| and 32 and with the lower removed section 36 setting up communication between the measuring chamber 28 and the discharge nozzle 35. When the solenoid 39 is energized the armature 38 is sucked inwardly, that is downwardly, carrying the valve 33 to its lower position in which the discharge nozzle 35 is plugged by the lower portion of the valve and the cross port 34 of the valve aligns horizontally a plurality of rows of such containers 4|. In the single embodiment of the invention illustrated in and preferably comprise endless chains 42 and with the ports 29, 3|), thus setting up a communication between the main precooled water tank 26 and the measuring chamber 28, whereby a predetermined volume of the precooled water may be transferred from the tank 26 to the chamber 28 preparatory to its delivery in the raised posltion of the valve 33 through the discharge nozzle 35 to cups or other containers 4| carried upon a conveyor and passing in sequence beneath the discharge nozzle 35.

The conveyor carrying the ice cube containers 4| may be so constructed as to support a single line of such containers 4| in an endless path, or

43 which are trained over pairs of toothed sprockets 44 and 45. Where a second row of ice cube containers 4| are provided a third endless chain 46 is provided together with additional sprockets to engage the end portions of the same; it being understood that in this case the intermediate chain 43 serves to support the containers 4| of both endless rows.

The containers 4| as shown in Figure 4 are supported across the chains 42, 43 and 43, 46 in any appropriate manner. Preferably conveyor webs 41 and 48 of rubber, rubber composition, or other elastic or resilient material is stretched across between the chains or belts 42, 43 and 43, 46. In practice the chains or belts 42, 43 and 46 may be moulded with the elastic or resilient compositions of the webs 41, 48 and the containers 4| into a single integral structure. The ice cube containers 4| are suspended from these webs 41 and 48 and are made from rubber, rubber composition or other elastic or resilient material. Such containers are in the form of inverted pyramids or inverted cones with the apexes removed and replaced by rounded bottoms 49, as shown in Figure 5, 6 and 7. These rounded bottoms are concave on the interiors of the receptacles and convex outwardly. The side and end walls of the containers 4| flare toward their open ends. In other words cross sectionally the containers 4| are larger at their open ends and progressively decrease in cross sectional area toward their closed rounded bottom walls 49. The relationship between the containers 4| and their supporting conveyor webs 41, 48 is such that the resilient bottom convex walls 49 are suspended between the chains or belts and are positioned to contact the mutually convex surfaces of ejection wheels 56 and 5| which are mounted in conjunction with the sprockets 45 at the discharge end of the conveyor. The ejection wheels 50, 5|, as shown in Figure 11, exert on the convex bottoms 49 a radial outward thrust placing a forceful pressure on the convex bottom surfaces 49 of the containers 4| and upon the ice cubes 52 contained therein. This pressure forces the normally convex bottom walls 49 0f the elastic ice cube containers 4| upward and into a concave position. The ice cubes 52 not being flexible or elastic like the container 4| are forced outward relatively to such containers 4|. As the ice cube moves outwardly it is of necessity loosened from all side walls of the ice cube containers 4| due to the pyramidal or conical construction of such walls of the ice cube containers.

The ejection wheels 50 and 5| may be mounted upon a shaft 53 at the ejection end of the machine. At the ejection end of the machine are mounted pairs of stationary ejector bars 54, 55, 56 and 51 with rounded or curved edges presented to the side walls of the elastic containers 4|. These ejection bars 54, 55, 56 and 51 are approximately tangent to the surface of the ejection wheels 50, 5| and at their upper inner portions these ejection bars 54, 55, 56 and 51 are slightly tapered to present wide mouths into which the elastic containers 4| move incident to the travel of the conveyor belt. As the elastic containers 4| descend between these pairs of ejection bars the side walls of the containers are progressively collapsed or pinched slightly toward one another at a point beginning approximately at the bases of the containers ii and at an initial point approximately inwardly of the convex outer bottom surfaces of the ice cubes 52. As the cube containers progress in their travel around the ejection wheel 50 and 5|, the pressure exerted by the ejection bars 54, 55, 56 and 51, due to their being positioned tangent to the arc of the ejection wheels 50 and 5|, is applied progressively along the entire lateral sides of each cube container, beginning at .the base and eventually extending to the mouth of each container as it finally passes completely through the ejection bars. This pressure acts to force and guide the ice cubes out of the containers 4| and into the delivery chute 80.

These ejection bars 58, 55, 56, 51 are carried in any appropriate manner for instance by a part of the framework 58 which may also act as a support for refrigerating coils 59.

A delivery chute 50 is positioned with its upperend below and forwardly of the ejector bars 54, 55 and 56, 51 in position to receive the ice cubes 52 from the receptacles 4|. In the chute 60 is a trap 6| mounted on the spring hinge 52 which tends to maintain the trap or gate in the upper closed position thus minimizing undesirable circulation of air in the freezing chamber. The load of the spring on the hinge 62 is such that the trap M will yield to the weight of an ice cube 52 opening to permit the ice cube to fall by the force of gravity. The chute 60 delivers the ice cubes 52 to a delivery opening 63 in the door or other wall of the refrigerator case 25 and a drinking glass or other recept'acle'may be held'beneath this delivery opening 63 to receive the ice.

The delivery opening is opened and closed by a vertically sliding door 68 mounted to slide in channel or other guides 55 mounted in the refrigerator wall or door 25. This door may be conveniently lifted by a handle 86. Projecting into I the path of the door at one side and at the lower portion of the door frame 85 is a lever 51 pivoted at 58 in the refrigerator structure 25 and having an inclined wall 69 disposed in the path of the door 60 to require the lever 51 to swing outwardly when the door is slid down to a closed position. The lever 57 is connected to a rod I carrying an electrical contact bar II adapted to close against the contacts I2 and I3 in the circuit I4. The rod I0 is connected to an armature I5 of a relay 16. When the sliding door is returned to a lower closed position it causes the rod upon which are mounted a series of corrugated bands, I50, to

slide under a springed dog I49. This springed dog is mounted on the wall 25 of the refrigerator door and in conjunction with the corrugated bands, I50, serves the purpose of maintaining the bar II across the electrical contacts I2 and 13. Thus when the sliding door is raised and pressure is removed from the lever 61 the circuit 14 remains unbroken. across contacts I2 and 13. With the sliding door in a raised position, and the dispensing machine functioning at the proper moment the circuit 94 becomes actuated, thereby moving the armature 15 of solenoid I6 in such a direction as to move the contact bar II, through the rod 10, away from the contacts I2 and I3 thereby opening circuit 14. This type of relay is generally known as a reset relay and the sliding door in returning to its closed position accomplishes the resetting of the contacts I2 and I3.

Projecting into the upper portion of the door frame is a wedge-shaped lever 11 pivoted at 18 so as to be swung outwardly of the door frame on engagement by the upwardly sliding door 84.

To this lever is pivoted a rod 19 having afllxed thereon a collar 80 engaged by a coil spring 8| which abuts against a guide 88 through which the rod 19 slides. The rod 19 carries an electrical contact bar 82 adapted to close against the spaced electrical contacts 83 and 88 which are also in the circuit 14. The spring 8| normally maintains the bar 82 out of engagement with the contacts 83 and 88 and holds the circuit open at this point. The raising of the door 64 shifts the'rod 19 to compress the spring 0| and close the bar 82 against the contacts 83 and 84.

Referring to the circuit diagram, the water dispensing solenoid 39 is in a circuit 85 which may be opened at the contacts 81 and 88 by movement of the electrical contact bar 89. This bar is under the control of a relay 90 in a circuit 9|. This circuit 9| is open at the contacts 92 and 93 while the circuit 94 for the relay I5 is opened at the contact 95. The contacts 92 and 93 are very close together while the contact 95 is spaced substantially from the contact 93. All of these contacts 92, 93 and 95 are in substantial alignment to be all closed in succession by a slidable contact bar 96 mounted upon a sliding bar 91 which is a part of one form of motor for driving th conveyor in its step by step progressive movement. A solenoid 98 is also a part of this motor; this solenoid being included in the circuit II.

Although an electric motor or other suitable motor ma be employed for the purpose it is preferred that the type of motor herein illustrated be used for intermittently driving the conveyor. This motor consists of the solenoid 98 having the armature 99 connected by a rod I00 to a floating pawl carrier IOI loosely mounted to rotate about the conveyor drive shaft I02 to which the sprockets 44 are keyed or otherwise aflixed. Th rod I00 has an end engaged in a, radial slot I03 of the pawl carrier IM and the rod itself plays through a cut-away portion I04 of the carrier in order to permit the rectilinear motion of the rod I00 imparting rotary motion to the pawl carrier IN.

The connection of the rod I00 is in the low r portion of the pawl carrier I0l. Pivotall connected to its upper portion in the cut-awa part I05 is a rod I06 connected to one end of a coil retractile spring I01 having its opposite end anchored at I08 to an appropriate part of the framework of the device.

The pawl carrier at its upper portion is provided with a' radial slot I09 for receiving there through the pawl rod I I0 which projects laterally beyond the rotary pawl carrier IOI for engagement with the teeth of a ratchet wheel I I I which is keyed or otherwis affixed to the conveyor drive shaft I02 alongside said rotary pawl carrier MI. The angular distance between the inclined and shouldered teeth of the ratchet wheel III is preselected to give th desired degree of linear movement to the conveyor at each actuation thereof.

The motor is contained in a case which in this instance may comprise two plates or sections I I2 and H3. These case sections H2 and H3 are mounted between the chains 42, 43 and between the sprockets 64 of such claims. One section of the case fits against the ratchet wheel III and the other section of the case I I2 has a thickened wall portion H4 in which is produced a slot II5 for receiving the end of the pawl rod H0 opposite-that engaging the ratchet wheel I I I. This slot II has a curved wall portion H6 at its outer end leading to a downwardly offset portion 1.

The case sections H2 and H3 have apertures H8, III! to fit about the conveyor drive shaft I02 and perforations I20, I2I, I22 and I23 for receiving connecting bolts or fastenings I24 by which the two sections of the case are held together. Other perforations I25 and I26 in the case sections H2, H3 are for th purpose of receiving fastenings to hold the armature guide I2I in place.

A delay return mechanism for the pawl carrier IN is provided which may consist in the instance shown of a reduction gear train comprising a gear wheel I20 fast on the conveyor drive shaft I02 and meshing with the comparatively smaller pinion I29 in turn driving a large gear wheel I30 meshing with a much smaller pinion I 3| which in turn drives a larger gear wheel I32 meshing with a pinion I33 driving the flat fan I34 which when revolving sets up an air resistance which impedes the speed of the reduction gears. In this way the rate of speed of the conveyor belt is controlled.

This gear train and fan are preferably contained in a speed control housing mounted in the space between the conveyor chains or belts 43 and 45. Such housing comprises the sections I35 and I36 having bearing apertures I 31 and I3 8 to fit over the conveyor drive shaft and other bearing apertures I39 and I40 to receive the shafts I4I, I42 and I43 of the gear assembly and fan. Perforations I44 and I45 are for the purpose of receiving bolts or other fastenings by which the two housing sections I35 and I36 are held together upon the reduction gear assembly.

A spring I85 is preferably coupled between the pawl rod H0 and the pawl carrier IOI tending to draw the pawl rod IIO radially inward to assure its engagement with the teeth of th ratchet II. A pivoted spring-pressed dog I 46 mounted horizontally adjacent but spaced from the securing point of the spring I45 but under the spring tension is also preferably engaged with the teeth of the ratchet wheel ii I to prevent reverse or retrograde rotation of the ratchet wheel I I I and its entrained parts including the conveyor drive shaft I02 and the conveyor and ic cube containers.

In operation, it will be noted from the circuit diagram that the contacts I2 and 13 for the relay I6 are normally closed by the electrical contact bar II when the machine has completed one cycle of its operation. When the door 64 is fully raised it encounters the lever TI swinging the same outwardly and causing the closing of the normally open switch 82, 83 and 84 whereby the circuit is completed through the driving solenoid 98. The driving solenoid 98 when energized causes its armature 99 to move through the armature guide I21. As this armature 39 moves toward its solenoid 98, the rod 91 is moving therewith, shifting the electrical contact bar 96 into a position bridging all three contacts 92, 93 and 95. In bridging these three contacts the circuit 94 is closed through the contacts 92 and 95, thus energizing the relay I6 and causing the same to break the contacts I2, 73 and thereby opening the circuit I4 and deenergizing the driving conveyor solenoid 98.

However, while the drive solenoid 98 was still energized it has caused the armature 99 through the connecting rod I00 to move the floating pawl carrier IOI counter-clockwise through approximately 45. This floating pawl carrier IOI revolves on the conveyor drive shaft I02 but is not keyed to such drive shaft I02 and therefore does not entrain that drive shaft I02 to move in this counter-clockwise direction. In other words the locking dog I46 acting on theratchet wheel III which is keyed to the conveyor drive shaft I02 prevents any counter-clockwise motion of the drive shaft I 02 or conveyor. This (punter-clockwise motion of the floating pawl carrier IOI distends the spring I07 and places the same under tension through the connecting rod I06.

As the floating pawl carrier IOI executes this counter-clockwise angular movement, the rod pawl H0 is rotated therewith approximately the distance of one tooth over the ratchet wheel III moving from the position a to the position b in Figure 20. The pawl spring I45 will yield to permit the rod pawl IIO to ride radiall out on the inclined surface of the ratchet tooth between the positions a and b and after clearing the shoulder of the tooth such spring I45 will act to draw the pawl rOd IIO radially inward to a position back of the shoulder of the tooth b in position to engage such shoulder and entrain the ratchet wheel III with the floating pawl carrier IOI on the return rotary movement of such floating pawl carrier IOI.

When the circuit I4 to the driving solenoid 98 is broken, as previously explained, the tension on the spring I0'I through the connecting rod I05 causes the floating pawl carrier IOI to return approx mately 45 clockwise to its at-rest position shown in Figure 16. In returning clockwise the pawl rod IIO carries the ratchet wheel III therewith from position b to a, thus rotating the conveyor drive shaft I02 and moving the conveyor and its ice cube containers through a predetermined distance and the ejection wheels 50, 5I through a predetermined distance.

As the conveyor belt moves clockwise 45 around the ejection wheel 50 such conveyor belt carries with it the ice cube container 4i shown in position A in Figure 3 to move to position B. In doing so the convex surface of the ejection wheel 50 places a forceful pressure on the convex bottom 49 of the ice cube container M and the ice cube 52 contained therein. This action forces the normally convex bottom 49 of the resilient ice cube container 4I outwards and into a concave position. The ice cube 52, not being flexible like the container 4|, is forced outwards. As the ice cube 52 moves outwards it is of necessity loosened from all sides of the ice cube container 4I due to the conical or pyramidal construction of the wall or walls of the ice cube container 4|. As the ice cube 52 and cube container 4i shown in position C moves to position D in Figure 3, the cube container 4i passes between the stationary ejector bars 54, 55, 56 and 51 which exert a slight pinching pressure on the resilient wall or walls of the ice cube container 4I. Such pressure forces and guides the ice cube 52 to fall free of its container 4i into the dispensing slot or chute 60.

As the ice cubes 52 fall onto the trap BI their weight opens the trap 6| allowing such ice cubes to fall into the chute 60 which delivers them by the force of gravity to the dispensing aperture 63 shown in Figure 3. The dispensing trap GI then returns to its at-rest upper position shown in Figure 3 caused by its spring hinge 62. The purpose of the trap BI is to minimize undesirable circulation of air in the freezing chamber.

To return to thecircuit diagram, as soon as the electrical contact bar 96 moves a short distance and thereafter for the entire forward and backward movement of this contact bar 93, it maintains-a closed circuit 9! through the relay 90. Relay 99.-closes its contacts 91, 98 completing circuit 93 through the water dispensing solenoid '39. This is the circuit which operates the water dispensing valve 33 whose purpose is to inject the proper amount of water into each empty ice cube container ll as it is required. When the water dispensing solenoid 39 is energized, as previously described, it causes the armature 39 to movedownwards at the same time placing a tension on the spring 31. In this energized position the precooled water tank 26 becomes connected through valve port 34 with the dispensing chamber 29 which is normally empty of water but which will lift the valve to the position shown in Figure 2, closing the communication with the "main tank 26 and opening the' dispensing and measuring chamber 28 to the discharge nozzle 35 through which the measured quantity of water in the chamber 28 will be allowed to flow out into .ice cube container 4| below. This completes the cycle of operations which in time, for example,

may occupy approximately two seconds and is controlled by the speed reduction assembly contained in the case or housing I35, I36. This gear assembly places a load on the spring I91 of the motor thus slowing down the return or contraction of this spring I01. This causes the conveyor to move-very slowly and results in a controlled movement of such conveyor.

Preferably the motor case and the gear assembly housing will be sealed against moisture and air. Such adjustment as may be necessary to govern the distance that the nail carrier moves during each individual cycle of its operation may be made by a set screw 8 the head of which screw is available on the outside of the motor housing.

A refrigerator or other structure containing an ice cube dispensing machine according to the present invention has many advantages over the conventional refrigerator. For instance as a matter of saving time, one or more cubes may be obtained in a matter of seconds; greater convenience is realized because there are no ice trays to break loose from a freezing chamber,

no wasting and splashing of water in the sink to loosen ice cubes from trays and no juggling and spilling of a tray full of water in carrying same back to the refrigerator; greater economy results because when only a few cubes are desired it is not necessary to remove a tray full of cubes melting a portion of them, less defrosting due to less opening of the main door, better preservation of food because of less defrosting, less loss of energy due to less loss of refrigerated air together with less unnecessary cube meltage, less space required for the mechanism than for the normal complement of ice trays in conventional refrigerators and consequently more space available for other use.

While I have disclosed herein the best form of the invention known to me at the present time, I desire it to be understood that I reserve 10 the right to make changes and modifications in the herein described embodiment of the invert.- tion provided such changes'fall within the scope of the following claims.

What is claimed is:

1. An ice cube dispensing machine comprising a conveyor, means for imparting movement to said conveyor, ice cube containers carried by and movable with said conveyor and of elastic or resilient material, and ejecting means disposed in the path of the side walls of the containers for exerting an inwardly squeezing movement on the castle or resilient side walls to eject the ice cakes therefrom.

2. An ice cube dispensing machine as claimed in claiml characterized by the fact that said means comprises stationary ejector bars having rounded inner corner portions to guide the sides of the elastic containers into the bars.

3. An ice cube dispensing machine comprising a conveyor, elastic'containei's for ice cubes having outwardly convex bottoms and outwardly flaring walls, and a dislodging'wheel with a convex surface over which said convex bottoms aremoved in the course of movement of the conveyor to press upon the convex bottoms and the ice cubes contained therein to dislodge the ice'cubes from the outwardly flaring walls of the containers, and ejecting means positioned relativel to the; conveyor to pinch the walls of the elastic containers at or about the bottom portions thereof at a point back of the dislodged cubesto eject the cubes from the containers.

4. -An ice cube dispensing machine as claimed in claim 3 in which the bottoms are internally concave to impart a convex formation to the inner ends of the ice cubes to enable a camming action by the ejector means beneath the ice cubes in the pinching action of the vwalls of the elastic containers, said camming action occurring as the cube containers move through and away from the ejector means in its travel around a dislodging wheel.

5. An ice cube dispensing machine comprising an endless conveyor, means for imparting movement to said conveyor, ice cube containers on and moving with said conveyor, means for ejecting the cubes from the containers, a delivery chute positioned to receive the ejected cubes from the containers, and a normally closed trap in said delivery chute openable automatically by weight of an ice cube.

6. A device for delivering water in measured quantities comprising a main tank, a measuring chamber in position to receive water from the main tank by gravity flow and having an outlet, a valve for opening the communication between the tank and chamber and for opening and closing said outlet biased to a position in which the outlet is open and communication closed between the tank and chamber, and means for shifting said valve to a position closing the outlet and opening the communication between tank and chamber. a

7. A device as claimed in claim 6 characterized by the fact that a spring moves the valve to one position and a solenoid moves the valve to its opposite position, and means for energizing said solenoid, and with means for precooling the water.

8. An ice cube dispensing machine comprising a conveyor, containers for ice cubes on said conveyor, means for ejecting the cubes from the containers, and a motor for intermittently moving said conveyor comprising a drive sprocket shaft for said conveyor, a ratchet wheel affixed to said shaft, a pawl engaged with said ratchet wheel, a floating pawl carrier on said shaft beside said ratchet wheel; a solenoid connected to rock said pawl carrier in one direction, and a spring connected to the pawl carrier to be placed under tension on the solenoid movement of said pawl carrier to return the pawl carrier to at-rest position when the solenoid is deenergized.

9. An ice cube dispensing machine as claimed in claim 8 characterized by the fact that the pawl has a rod portion moving in a curved slot of a fixed casing part to cause the pawl when rotated to move radially inward to engage back of a shoulder of a ratchet tooth.

10. An ice cube dispensing machine comprising an endless conveyor, containers for ice cubes on the conveyor, a water delivery device to the empty containers at one end portion of the conveyor, a freezing chamber enveloping a portion of the upper run of the conveyor and the containers thereon, means for ejecting from the containers the frozen cubes at the other end portion of the conveyor, a motor for driving the conveyor step by step, a solenoid for actuating said motor, a second solenoid for actuating said water delivery device, relays for controlling the closing of the circuits through said solenoids, a delivery opening positioned to receive the ejected ice cubes from the containers, a door for such opening and switches positioned to be operated by said door in the opening and closing movements thereof and coupled to the circuits of the relays for starting and arresting the operation of the machine.

11. An ice cube dispensing machine as claimed in claim 10 characterized by the fact that said motor solenoid when energized shifts an electrical contact bar into engagement with contacts for closing circuits through both relays, the contact bar for the relay of the motor solenoid being spaced remotely from the other contacts whereby such relay circuit is promptly opened on the return movement of the contact bar after deenergizing the motor solenoid but the relay circuit 01' the water delivery solenoid is maintained closed through the major movement of the contact bar in both directions of its movement.

12. An ice cube dispensing machine according to claim 11 characterized by the fact that said motor solenoid cocks a ratchet mechanism and stretches a return spring for actuating the ratchet mechanism to advance the conveyor, with means to slow the return contracting movement of the spring.

13. An ice cube dispensing machine according to claim 12 characterized by the fact that the means to slow the action of said spring comprises a reduction gear train and a flat fan driven thereby connected to a drive shaft of the conveyor.

FREDERICK A. HURLEY.

REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,857,122 Sherman May 3, 1932 2,025,711 Bemis Dec. 31, 1935 2,273,479 Wahl Feb. 17, 1942 2,407,402 Clem Sept. 10, 1946

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1857122 *Jan 16, 1930May 3, 1932Sherman Alvin GIce cube forming and dispensing device
US2025711 *Mar 23, 1932Dec 31, 1935Bemis Waldo EApparatus for making ice
US2273479 *Jun 15, 1940Feb 17, 1942Wahl John CArticle dispensing or vending machine
US2407402 *Jul 27, 1942Sep 10, 1946Clem James RDispensing device
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2697918 *Nov 16, 1949Dec 28, 1954Comstock Alfred EIce dispensing apparatus
US2718124 *Jun 1, 1953Sep 20, 1955Gilliam Thomas BIce cube apparatus and method
US2767557 *Oct 29, 1953Oct 23, 1956Gen ElectricSemi-automatic ice maker
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Classifications
U.S. Classification62/137, 62/345, 312/97, 221/10, 141/165, 62/1, 221/78, 222/451
International ClassificationF25C1/10
Cooperative ClassificationF25C1/10
European ClassificationF25C1/10