US 2639958 A
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A. W. STEPHENSON HUMIDOR CIGAR CASE May 26, 1953 2 Sheets-Sheet l Filed Oct. 4, 1951 )ma www May 26, 1953 A. w. sTEPHENsoN 2,639,958.
HUMIDOR CIGAR CASE Filed Oct. 4, v1951 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 A INVENTOR. W0//o 5f@ 4o/)amb phenson zat/w@ lai Patented May 26, 1953 l signor to The E. O. BulmanManufacturing Company, Inc.,A Grand` Rapids, Mich., acorp ration of Michigan Application'October 4, 1951, Serial No. 249,770
1 This invention relates toa humidifled selfservice cigar case. It is particularly intended to display boxed. cigars in a conspicuous manner so that they may be selected by they customer without the help of a clerk, and the casel also provides Istorage space fora reserve stock of cigars and tobacco, both theA reserve stockvand the cigars on display being constantly humidified by a controlled ow of moist air which flows under pressure through the stockchambers` and thence over the displayed cigars, and a part of the moist air, combined with fresh air from the exterior of the case, is returned into the case where it is rehumidied and continually passes over and `around theA reserve and display stock, keeping them in proper fresh and `moist condition.
The device is provided with various knovel features of construction and .arrangement .fas hereinafter particularly described, referencebef' ing had to the accompanying drawings in which:
Fig. 1 is a front perspective View ofa case embodying the invention,
Fig. 2 is a longitudin-al sectional elevationxon the line 2-2r of Fig. 3,
Fig. 3 is a transverse sectional elevation [on the line 3--3 of Fig. 2,
Fig. 4 is a fragmentary plan .view ofthe humidifying chamber showing the air ilow control valve, and
Fig. 5 is an elevatiom partly in section on the line 5-5 of Fig. 3, of the humdifying chamber.
Like reference numerals apply to like parts in all of the figures.
The display case is mounted on a suitable base I which forms'no part of'` the invention. The case has ends 2, a bottom 3, a top 4, and an intermediate shelf whi'ch divides the :interior of the case into upper and lower compartments 6 and 1. The back of the case is closed by conventional sliding doors 8 which t quite closely to provide yadequate air seal.
Within the lower compartment I is located the humidifying chamber which comprises a box 9 having a removable topl I0. The interior of the box is divided into two chambers Il and I2. The chamber II has an air inlet opening I3 and contains a blower fan I4, which has a delivery outlet I4a into the chamber I2. The fan is provided with suitable driving means such as a small electric motor (not shown).
The chamber I2 contains the humidifying device which comprises a water container I5 open at its top, and preferably made of glass or a plastic material which will resist lime deposit and cor- 2 rosion. A series of horizontal bars It extend across the container I5 near its top, and fabric wicking or suitable absorbtive material I'I is draped over the rods I6 and hangs clown between the rods intoA water in the container. A float I8 is mounted onan arm I9 pivoted to a .side of the box 9, andan upwardly extending rod 20 on the arm lextends through an opening in the top I 0 of the box. The float rests upon the water in the 1 container I5 and rises or lowers with its level and indicates by the rod 20 the amount of water in the container. The rod 2li may be calibrated for this purpose. The chamber l2'is provided witha pluralityv of outlet openings I2enear its top and also with a controllable air outlet 'which consists of a plurality of openings 2i inthe cover I0, and a plate 22 having similar openings 23 isslidably mounted over the cover and may be movedv so that its openings 23 are' either in full register or partial register with the openings 22 in the cover, thereby providing means for controlling the amount of humidied air emitted from the humidifier into the cigar case.
Thestock compartments and lare partially closed at their fronts by vertical walls 25 and 2E, which `extend upwardly from the compartment bottoms 3 and 5 nearly to the tops of the compartments. Small spaces or gaps 25a and 2lia are leftA along the upper edges of the walls 25 and'2l, and the upper edges `are beveled inwardly,- which provide restricted funnel-shaped air outlets from the compartments E and 'E at their top'front corners. The front wall 2S for the lower compartment l' is provided at its lower edgewith an opening Zb which serves as a return aix-inlet which communicates with the inlet opening into the fan chamber I3 of the humidiiier. Air passages 21 are'provided in the bottom of the compartment E.
The forward portions of the shelves 3 and 5 in front of the vertical walls 25 and 2E serve as supportsv for cigar boxes. Molding strips 28 are preferably attached to the front edges of these shelves and extend slightly above them and serve as stops against which the forward edgesof the cigar boxes on display may be aligned. These shelves forward of the walls 25 and 26 are somewhat wider than the Widths of the cigar boxes, and when resting on the shelves ,with their fronts aligned against the moldings 28 the cigar box lids, which are hinged to the rear of the boxes, are opened and lean in an inclined position against the vertical walls 25 and 25, leaving air circulation spaces between the cigar boxes and their lids and the said vertical Walls.
Deecting plates 30 of glass or other suitable transparent material, extend downwardly at an angle from the forward edges of the top 4 and shelf 5, being spaced forwardly from the vertical walls 25 and 26 and having the upper edges of the cigar box lids located behind them. These plates 30 deflect the air emitted from the passageways 25a and 2lia in a downward direction so that it will flow over and into the cigar boxes and cigars within them.
A humidity controlled electric switch of conventional design is provided in a box 35 within the compartment 'I where it is exposed to the air therein, and this switch is wired into the electric circuit for the motor which drives the blower I4 and acts to automatically stop or start operation of the blower in accordance with the humidity of the air in the chamber.
Operation Boxes of cigars are placed on the forward parts of the shelves 3 and 5, their fronts aligned against the moldings 28 and their lids inclined rearwardly against the walls 25 and 26 with their upper portions behind the transparent deflector plates 30. The reserve stock of cigars and tobacco is placed within the -compartments 6 and 'I but spaced therein to provide air circulation space around them. The water container I is provided with the desired amount of water, the fan I4 set in motion and the rear doors 8 are closed.
Air from the exterior entering the case through the passage 2Gb is drawn into the chamber` II of the humidifier box 8 through the opening I3 by the fan I4, which forces it into the chamber I2 where it picks up moisture from the wicking I'I. This moist air is then expelled from the box through the outlet opening I2a and the valved outlet openings 2| and 23 into the compartment 1 from which part of it finds its way linto the compartment 6 through the passage 21.
After circulating amongst and Iconditioning the stock in these compartments, the humidied air,
still under pressure from the fan, passes out of the compartments E and 'l which have become plenum chambers in which the air in all parts of them is under substantially uniform pressure. Under this uniform pressure the moist air ows out of the passages 25'1 and 2lia equally throughout their entire lengths and then is directed downwardly by the deflector plates 30 onto the cigar boxes and their contents, and finds its way into the boxes and around and behind them through the spaces between the boxes as they do not t tightly against each other. The moist air being relatively heavy, drops by gravity and after circulating around the cigar boxes some of it will pass away from the case, but a part of it which still maintains some of its moisture will be returned, mixed with fresh air from the exterior of the case, through the passage 26b from where the process of rehumidifying and circulation is repeated.
4 The extent of humidiiication can be controlled both by adjusting the valve plate 22 to control the volume of air emitted into the compartments and by varying the amount or depth of water in the container I5, as indicated by the gauge rod 2U. Also, the humidity controlled switch in the box 35 acts to automatically control operation of the fan in accordance with the degree of humidity within the compartments.
This device serves to maintain both the displayed cigars and the reserve stock in proper moist condition, and distributes the moist air uniformly amongst the reserve stock in the case and also over and around the cigars in the boxes on display.
The case provides an open display of cigars Within easy reach where the customer can make his own selection without waiting several minutes for clerk service. It takes the customer only a few seconds to select his cigars and hand the pay to the clerk, there being practically no loss of time for the customer or the clerk.
The deflector plates 30 of transparent material serve not only their usefulness in deflecting the air downwardly over the cigars, but do not obscure the box lids on which the manufacturers display appears, and also add a touch of glitter to the general appearance of the display.
The invention is dened in the appended claims and is to be considered comprehensive of all forms of construction coming within their scope.
1. A humidor cigar case comprising a cabinet having a substantially closed interior, a substantially horizontal shelf on the exterior of the cabinet, a substantially vertical back for said shelf, said back being a wall of said cabinet, means for humidifying air and injecting it under pressure into the interior of the cabinet, an outlet passage from said interior through said back wall in the upper region thereof above said shelf and a ldownwardly extending deflector plate in front of said outlet passage and spaced from said back and above said shelf, whereby a box of cigars may be supported on said shelf below said deflector with its open cover leaning against said back and behind said deflector.
2. The elements of claim 1 in which said deflector is transparent.
3. Theelements of claim 1 in which there are a plurality of said shelves in steppedrelation to each other, each having a said back Wall, outlet passage and deflector plate whereby humidied |air ejected through said outlet passages will cascade downwardly from shelf to shelf and over the cigars in the boxes thereon.
ALPHA W. STEPHENSON.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 467,708 Rice Jan. 26, 1892 1,205,040 .Skall Nov. 14, 1916 1,971,405 Harris Aug. 28, 1934 2,386,208 Godfrey Oct. 9, 1945