US 2536298 A
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Jan. 2, 1951 c. T. MANLEY CORN POPPING APPARATUS AND VENTILATOR THEREFOR Filed April 10, 1948 W vWamnm attorneys Patented Jan. 2, 1951 CORN POBPING APEARATU S AND VENTILATOR THEREFOR CharlesT. Manley, deceased, late of Kansas City, Mo., by Violet -G. Manley, executrix, Kansas City, Mo., assignor to Manley, 1110., Kansas City, Mo., a corporation of Missouri Application April 10, 1948, Serial No. 20,295
6 Claims. I 1
This invention relates to corn popping apparatus and more particularly to an arrangement for simultaneous ventilation of the cabinet and cooking element therein by inducing flow of air therefrom, the invention constituting an improvement over the apparatus disclosed and claimed in United States Patent No. 2,232,954, granted February 25, 1941.
It is customary in the present day corn popping apparatus, particularly such apparatus as is used in theatres and other public place in the vending of popped corn, to cook or pop the corn in the presence of an oil in a cooking element or kettle located inside of a display compartment. The heat effects vaporization of some of the oil, said vapors escaping from the kettle. Also some of the oil vapors escape into the cabinet as the popped corn is emptied from the cooking element. The oil vapors tend to condense and be deposited on the walls of the cabinet and on the parts of any ventilating apparatus tending to remove the oil vapor-laden air and fumes from the cabinets and/or cooking elements. The oil vapors form a greasy coating on any operating parts of the ventilating system and if a fan is used, the accumulation of the greasy coating destroys the efficiency of the apparatus. Also the greasy coating tends to collect dirt, bacteria and the like, making an unsanitary apparatus.
The objects of the present invention are to provide for substantially evacuating oil vaporbearing fumes from a display compartment and to exhaust smoke and vapor-bearing fumes from the cooking device of the apparatus in such a manner that the oil vapors are prevented from adversely affecting the operating parts, display,
or other functions of the general apparatus; to provide apparatus for inducin flow of oil vaporladen air and fumes simultaneously from the display cabinet and corn cooking apparatus; to provide a ventilating structure adapted for easy removal for cleaning all of the portions of the apparatus subject to coating of grease condensed from the oil vapors, there being no operating parts in the said portion of the apparatus; and to provide a simple, relatively economical and highly efficient ventilating apparatus which is easily maintained in a sanitary condition.
In accomplishing these and other objects of the present invention, there have been provided improved details of structure the preferred form of which is illustrated in the accompanying drawings, wherein:
Fig. 1 is a fragmentary perspective View of a corn popping apparatu showing the arrangement of the cooking element and the ventilating duct leading therefrom.
Fig 2 is a detail vertical cross-section through the corn popping apparatus illustrated in Fig. I, particularly illustrating the ventilating apparatus in its relation to the cooking and display portions of the apparatus for dissipating the oil vapor-laden fumes from the corn popping apparatus.
Fig. 3 is a view of the ventilating apparatus taken on the line 3'3, Fig. 2.
Fig. 4 is a perspective view of the portion of the ventilating apparatus subjected to coating by the oil vapors disassembled from the blower device.
Referring more in detail to the drawings:
I designates a corn popping apparatus embodying the features of the present invention which preferably consists of structural members suitably partitioned to provide a display compartment 2 and a hood element 3. The structural members defining the display compartment 2 are preferably connected by transparent hinged 'or fixed panels 4 and 5 through which popped corn in the display compartment may be easily observed and through which access may be had for cooking and dispensing operations on the corn. The hood element 3 of the apparatus is preferably separated from the display compartment by wall 6 suitably mounted on structural members 7 carried on vertical structural members 8, said wall forming the upper closure of the display compartment 2 and the bottom of the space enclosed by said hood. The hood element includes a top wall 9 terminating in downwardly extending side and end walls I!) and l I mounted on the wall 6 to provide a substantially enclosed space between said hood element and the wall 6, in which are contained operating devices for the apparatus as later described.
Mounted on the wall 6 and depending therefrom into the display compartment are spaced standards I2 and l 3 having suitable bearing openings at their lower ends preferably in alignment for receiving trunnions M which are suitably fixed, preferably in oppositely disposed relation, on bracket members [5 and I6 carried on the cover member ii of a cooking element such as a kettle Hi. The kettle i8 is of suitable material and construction, the principal requisite of which is that it be capable of holding a suflicient amount of popcorn to produce adequate quantities of popped corn when heated as by a suitable heating element (not shown) in the bottom of the kettle, said element being connected by a conduit l9 with a control box (not shown) mounted on the apparatus and having suitable switches for energizing and deenergizing the various mechanisms of the corn popping apparatus and particularly the heating or cooking elements in the kettle.
The cover I? is preferably fixed to the kettle and in order to provide access to the interior of the kettle, a portion 29 thereof is hinged, as at 2],
in such a manner that the portion 29 may be lifted and lowered at will to pour popcorn into the kettle and popped corn out of the kettle. An actuating member in the form of a lever 22 is mounted on the bracket l6 and may be manipulated to tilt the kettle on its trunnions [4 for emptying the kettle of its contents.
As is customary, an agitator is mounted in the kettle and rotated during the popping operation. The agitator is carried by a shaft 23 pivotally mounted in a bearing 24 carried on the cover l'l, said shaft being connected to a flexible drive enclosed in a flexible casing 25 and suitably driven by a motor 25 carried by a motor base 21 mounted on the wall 3 in the space enclosed by the hood 3.
When corn is popped in an apparatus of this character, seasoning oil is customarily employed to condition the corn and render same more palatable. The oil when heated produces fumes, smoke, oil vapors and the like, which, if not effectively dissipated, emanates from the kettle toward the transparent panels of the display compartment and discolors same to the extent that the functions of the display compartment are impaired. Also the oil vapors form a coating of grease to which dirt and bacteria adhere making an unsanitary condition in the apparatus.
In order to overcome the diificulties noted and to efiectively exhaust fumes and greases carried thereby from the apparatus, openings 28 and 2'9 are provided in the motor base and Wall 6 respectively and an exhaust duct 39 is mounted on the cover portion ll of the kettle, which duct opens, as at 3!, into the interior of the kettle.
The duct 39, when the kettle is in position for the cooking of the corn, is substantially in coaxial alignment with the openings 28 and 29. The upper end 32 of the duct is provided with a funnel 33 having upwardly diverging walls 34, the upper edges 35 of said walls being spaced as at 39 from the wall 6 sufficiently for the funnel to move into and out of alignment with the openings 28 and 29 when the kettle is tipped as for emptying popped corn therefrom without the edges 35 of said funnel touching the lower end 91 of a fume discharging device to be later described.
In order to elfectively dissipate the undesirable fumes and oil vapors generated in the kettle and escaping to the display compartment, a blower 38 having an impeller 39 therein driven by a motor 49 is suitably mounted on the motor base 27, said blower having an air intake 4| and a discharge connection 42. The end 43 of the discharge connection 42 is adapted to be tightly received in a fitting 44 of a Venturi tube device 45. The Venturi tube device is preferably a casting of suitable material which may be sterilized and otherwise cleaned without damage thereto, said Venturi tube consisting of a vertically disposed duct 46 extending downwardly through the openings 28 and 29 in the motor base and wall 6 respectively, said duct terminating slightly below the lower surface of the Wall 6. The duct is pro vided with a flange 4'! spaced from the lower end of said duct sufliciently whereby said flange rests on the upper base of the motor base 21 to position the lower end of the duct. Approximately midway the height of the Venturi tube, the vertical duct 46 terminates in an upwardly sloping portion 49 which extends through an opening 59 in the top wall 9 of the hood 3, the sloping portion 49 of the Venturi tube being cut, as at 5|, parallel with the top wall 9 whereby the tube terminates slightly thereabove. The duct 46 and sloping portion 49 provide a continuous passage leading from the display compartment to the exterior of the corn popping apparatus.
Integral with the Venturi tube and extending into the sloping portion 49 of the duct is a nozzle 52, said nozzle terminating as at 53 slightly above the point of connection of the vertical duct 46 and the sloping portion 49. The nozzle is provided with walls 54 converging toward the end 53 thereof and is spaced from the side walls as at 55 to permit passage of fumes from the display cabinet through said tube. The nozzle walls 54 are so arranged as to provide a passage 56 therethrough having communication with the discharge end of the blower 38 whereby air supplied thereby is discharged through the passage 58 and from the nozzle into the sloping portion 49 inducing a flow of air, fumes and oil vapors through the Venturi tube for discharge to the exterior of the popping apparatus.
It is apparent that suitable connection and controls may be made with motor 40 in such a manner that the blower may be energized or deenergized at the will of the operator of the apparatus.
The operation of the corn popping apparatus and particularly the ventilating arrangement therefor is as follows:
The hinged cover on the kettle may be manipulated to open the kettle so that popped corn and seasoning oil in suitable quantities may be applied to the kettle. A suitable switch may then be manipulated to energize the kettle heating element whereupon heat is produced to cook or pop the corn in the kettle. As the heat is increased fumes are released from the oil and corn, which, together with oil vapor, rise upwardly in the kettle and escape through the duct 30. The control for the blower having been manipulated to energize same, the blower draws air through the intake opening 4| and discharges same through the discharge connection through the passage 55 and from the end of the nozzle with relatively high velocity inducing a flow of air through the Venturi tube forming a suction in the vertical duct 46 which exhausts the fumes and oil vapors from the kettle due to the reduction of pressure in the cabinet 2 adjacent the lower end 31 of the Venturi tube, the induced flow through the Venturi tube affecting simultaneous discharge of the fumes and oil vapors to the atmosphere. Fumes escaping from the kettle, due, for example, to leakage, and lifting of the hinged portion of the kettle cover due to the popping action of the corn in the kettle, also rise towards the top of display compartment and are drawn through the space between the edge 35 of the funnel and the lower end of the vertical duct 46 through the duct along with the fumes and oil vapors passing through the duct 39 for effectively inducing evacuation of the fumes from the display compartment of the corn popping apparatus by means of the blower discharge through the nozzle inducing the flow through the Venturi tube.
When the popcorn has been sufliciently popped, the lever 22 may be manipulated to pivot the kettle on its trunnions from the position illustrated in Fig. 2 tilting said kettle for discharge of the contents thereof onto the display compartment floor of the apparatus; hence the funnel 33 is placed below the lower end of the duct 46. Said funnel does not contact said lower edges of the duct and the kettle is free to pivot at the will of the operator. When the handle 22 is released the kettle returns of its own accord to the normal position illustrated in Fig. 2 and the apparatus is prepared for another corn popping operation.
Condensation of the oil vapors will form on the inner walls of the Venturi tube particularly the vertical duct 46 and the sloping portion 59 forming a greasy coating thereon. This grease tends to accumulate dirt and bacteria and becomes unsanitary. In order to clean and sterilize same the Venturi tube is lifted from the openings 28 and 29 and released from the end 43 of the discharge of the blower whereby the Venturi tube may be removed from inside of the hood, placed in hot water or otherwise processed to sterilize and clean said tube. After cleaning the lower end of the duct 46 is again inserted into the openings 28 and 29 and the connection 44 applied to the discharge of the blower. The ventilating device is then ready for further operation. It is apparent therefore that means have been provided for exhausting fumes and oil vapor-laden air from the interior of a corn popping apparatus in a convenient and highly efficient manner and that the ventilating apparatus subjected to condensation of oil vapors is easily removed, facilitating cleaning and maintaining same in a sanitary condition.
What is claimed and desired to secure by Let ters Patent is:
1. In a corn popping apparatus, a cabinet, a cooking element in the cabinet, a Venturi tube communicating th interior of the cabinet with the atmosphere, a duct on the cooking element terminating adjacent to and spaced from the point of communication of the Venturi tube and cabinet, a blower, and means including a nozzle in the tube connected with the blower for directing a jet of air into the Venturi tube towa-rd the atmosphere for inducing flow of fumes simultaneously from the cabinet and. cooking element.
2. In an apparatus of the character described, a cabinet, a cooking element in the cabinet, a hood on the cabinet, a tube in the hood communicating the cabinet with the atmosphere, a blower in the hood, and means including a nozzle in the tube connected with the blower for di recting the blower discharge into the tube intermediate the ends thereof and toward the atmosphere for inducing flow of fumes from the cabinet.
3. In an apparatus of the character described, a cabinet, 2. cooking kettle pivotally mounted in the cabinet, a hood on the cabinet, a tube in the hood communicating the cabinet with the atmosphere, a blower in the hood, and means including a nozzle in the tube removably connected with the blower for directing the blower discharge into the tube intermediate the ends thereof and toward the atmosphere for inducing flow of fumes simultaneously the cabinet and cooking kettle.
In an apparatus of the character described, a cabinet, a cooking kettle pivotally mounted in the cabinet, a duct opening from the kettle and extending toward the top of the cabinet, a hood on the cabinet, a tube removably mounted in the hood communicating the cabinet with the atmosphere, said tube having an inlet adjacent to and spaced from the end of the duct, a blower, and
means including a nozzle in the tube connected with the blower for directing the blower dischar e into the tube intermediate the ends thereof and toward the atmosphere whereb said blower discharge induces flow of air in said tube simultaneously acting on the cabinet and kettle duct for moving fumes and vapors therefrom to the atmosphere.
5. In an apparatus of the character described, a cabinet, a cooking kettle mounted in the cabinet, the duct opening from the kettle and extending toward the top of the cabinet, a removable tube communicating the cabinet with the atmosphere, said tube having an inlet in alignment with and spaced from the end of the duct, a nozzle in the tube having its discharge directed toward the outlet thereof, and an air blast means removably connected with the nozzle whereby said air blast induces flow in said tube simultaneously acting on the cabinet and kettle duct for moving fumes and vapors therefrom to the atmosphere, the removable tube being the only portion of the vapor withdrawing device subjected to condensation of vapors from the cabinet and kettle.
6. In an apparatus of the character described, a cabinet, a cooking kettle pivotally mounted in the cabinet and having a portion allowing access to the kettle for filling and emptying the kettle, the duct opening from the kettle and extending toward the top of the cabinet, a hood on the cabinet, a tube removably mounted in the hood communicating the cabinet with the atmosphere, said tube having an inlet in alignment with and spaced from the end of the duct, a nozzle in the tube having its discharge directed toward the outlet thereof, and a blower having its discharge removably connected with the nozzle whereby said blower discharge induces flow of air in said tube simultaneously acting on the cabinet and kettle duct for moving fumes and vapors therefrom to the atmosphere, the removable tube being the only portion of the vapor Withdrawing device subjected to condensation of vapors from the cabinet and kettle.
VIOLET G. MANLEY,
Executria: of the Estate of Charles T. Manley, De-
REFERENCES CITED UNITED STATES PATENTS Name Date Manley Feb. 25, 1941 Number