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Publication numberUS2729961 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 10, 1956
Filing dateSep 20, 1950
Priority dateSep 20, 1950
Publication numberUS 2729961 A, US 2729961A, US-A-2729961, US2729961 A, US2729961A
InventorsSarkis Shields Carl
Original AssigneeSarkis Shields Carl
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Dry cleaning apparatus
US 2729961 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jan. 10, 1956 c, s, SHIELDS 2,729,961

DRY CLEANING APPARATUS Filed Sept. 20, 1950 2 Sheets-Sheet l INVENTORI. CAEL $42,445 H/ELDS ATTOE/VEYS 1956 c. s. SHIELDS 2,729,961

DRY CLEANING APPARATUS Filed Sept. 20, 1950 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR.

CAEL 5143K IS JH/ELDJ A EA/EYJ United States Patent 2,729,961 DRY CLEANING APPARATUS Carl Sarkis Shields, Wicklilfe, Ohio Application September 20, 1950, Serial No. 185,711

13 Claims. (Cl. 63-48) The present invention relates generally to the dry clean ing art and is more particularly concerned with novel apparatus for dry cleaning.

The apparatus of the prior art presently in commercial use in dry cleaning establishments represents the results of a relatively long evolutionary process and incorporates a number of desirable features, both from the standpoints of structure andoperation. In addition, the cleaning results obtained through the use of this apparatus are, by comparison with those obtained with the best commercial apparatus of thirty to forty years ago, generally of high quality. Nevertheless, this prior art equipment is uniformly large and cumbersome and relatively difficult to install and maintain, and has other shortcomings of significance. Because of its bulk and mass, this apparatus is costly in terms of materials of construction as well as in terms of space requirements. Furthermore, the operation of these prior devices has evolved a water separation problem which, to the best of my knowledge, has never heretofore been satisfactorily solved.

In accordance with the present invention, there is pro vided a dry cleaning machine which eliminates or materially reduces the shortcomings and difficulties of the prior art devices set forth above. Furthermore, the present apparatus does not involveor incorporate any offsetting disadvantage; and it, therefore, represents a very substantial contribution to the dry cleaning art.

Further important objects and advantages of the method and apparatus of this invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of this invention, reference being had to the drawings accompanying and forming a part of this specification, in which: t t

Fig. 1 is afragmentary, schematic view of a dry cleaning apparatus and fluid system embodying the present invention in a preferred form;

Fig. 2 is a fragmentary, elevational view of a portion of the apparatus and system of Fig. 1 showing the novel valve means of the fluid system whereby dry cleaning solvent is continuously filtered and flowed intermittentlyfrom the filter to the washing compartment and is flowed alternatively intermittently to the reservoir;

Fig. 3 is a fragmentary, elevational view of the Fig.2 device taken on line 3-3 thereof;

Fig. 4 is a fragmentary, plan view, partly in section, of lock mechanism shownin Fig. 3 for locking the valve of the Fig. 2 device in open position;

Fig. 5 is a fragmentary, elevational View partly in section of the novel dump valve device of this invention and actuating mechanism therefor;

Fig. 6 is a fragmentary, elevational view of the actuating mechanism of the apparatus of Fig. 5 taken on line 6--6 thereof;

Fig. 7 is a sectional elevational view of the novel water separating apparatus of this invention shown in Fig. 1; and,

Fig. 8 is a fragmentary, sectional view of the device of Fig. 7 taken on line 8-8 thereof.

Broadly, the apparatus of this invention as incorporated known in the dry cleaning art.

2,729,961 Patented Jan. 10, 1956 in a dry cleaning machine including a washing compartment, a reservoir for dry cleaning solvent, a filter for the solvent communicating with the reservoir and a pump to draw solvent from the reservoir and deliver it to the washing compartment, comprises the combination of a conduit connecting the filter to the washing compartment for solvent flow to the compartment, means including a pipe communicating with the conduit and reservoir and having a portion between said conduit and reservoir disposed upwardly to conduct solvent liquid to a level substantially above the normal solvent liquid level in the said compartment and above the uppermost portion of said conduit, and valve means associated with said conduit to control the flow of solvent through the portion of said conduit between the point of communication of said conduit and pipe and the said compartment. Thus, solvent liquid carried as a head in the pipe bend portion will run through the conduit when the valve is open and will be delivered into the washing compartment and into contact with the articles, such as garments therein to be dry cleaned.

More specifically, the apparatus of Fig. 1 comprises a washing compartment 10 such as described and shown in my copending application, Serial No. 163,732, filed May 23, 1950, from which U. S. Patent No. 2,674,869 was issued on April 13, 1954-, and is equipped with an access door 11, means for locking the door indicated fragmentarily at 12, a fan 13 for venting solvent vapors from the compartment through a manifold 14 leading to a recovery unit 15 wherein the vapors thus exhausted from compartment ltl are condensed. The condensate mixture of solvent and a small quantity of water is drawn off from the recovery unit through a line 18 and thereby delivered into a water separating device 19 comprising a vessel 20, an upper wall portion of which is provided with an elongated horizontally extending slot 21 through which water-free solvent condensate flows continuously to an adjoining solvent reserve vessel 22 having in its upper portion a slotlike aperture 24 in register with aperture 21 and of substantially the same size as said aperture 21. A stand pipe 25 extends into the vessel 20 through the top thereof and is removable therefrom to facilitate cleaning and has a lower open end disposed adjacent to the bottom of vessel 20 and substantially below aperture 21. Adjacent to the upper closed end of stand pipe 25 line 18 enters stand pipe. A second opening is provided in this upper portion of stand pipe 25 through which water separated by gravity from the heavier solvent fraction of the condensate in the stand pipe and collected in the upper part of the stand pipe, flows through this second opening into a pipe 27 leading to a disposal point (not shown). Thus, substantially all the water burden of the condensate coming from recovery unit 15 and the still is separated from solvent liquid in the stand pipe and only solvent liquid is contained in vessel 20 outside the stand pipe. This arrangement enables relatively rapid and constant flow of solvent-water mixtures into separating apparatus with correspondingly rapid withdrawal of solvent-free water through pipe 27 and similarly rapid withdrawal of water free solvent through apertures 21 and 24, all of which is in sharp contrast to the relatively slow functioning, bulky and inefiiciently operating water separating means heretofore As an additional important advantage, the condition of the liquid fractions is substantially always stable as to level, thus assuring a minimum of mixing between them and a clean rapid separation of water from solvent. This unique stability characteristic is attributable in large part to the unusual manner in which the solvent liquid flows from device 19. Normally, this flow through openings 21 and 24 is in a large volume but a shallow stream due to the novel shape of theseopenings. As the volume increases'this depth of solventin the openings also increases but the relationship is substantially a straight line function in contrast to the condition prevailing in heretofore conventional devices of this general type.

This apparatus of Fig. 1 also includes a drain pipe 30 communicating with the washing compartment at its lowermost portion for removing; solvent liquid from the compartment and delivering the solvent to dump valve mechanism 32, and a lint and button trap 33 from which thesolvent liquid flowsdown into a reservoir 34. Trap 33 may suitably be of generally conventional construction, but dump valve 32, as illustrated in Figs. and 6; is novel and comprises a valve body 35 having an inlet opening 36 communicating with the lower end of pipe 30 and the valve chamber 37 wherein a valve seat 38 is provided for fluid tight and sealing engagement with a valve disc 39 disposed inchamber 37 and carried by a valve stem 40 extending through the'top of the body for motion in a generally vertical direction. The valve closure means including disc 39 and stem 40 is actuated to open and close the valve by means of a lever 42 which is connected at one end pivotally to stationary superstructure 43 of the valve body by means ofa link 44 and is'pivoted between its ends to the upper portion of stem 40, thus being movable at its free end up and down to .open and clos'ethe valve. A solenoid 46 is connected to stem 40 and supported by superstructure 43 and is-electrically operatively associated in any conventional manner with means (not shown) to open the valve at predetermined times when it is desired to run solvent liquid through the valve at a maximum rate, as when the washing compartment is being dumped at the end of a dry cleaning cycle. A latch or locking mechanism 47 is also associated with the valve stem and is located adjacent to the free end of actuating lever 42 and comprises a stationary slotted frame member 48 through which said lever 42'extends, and a pivoted latch element 50 supported by the member '48 and having a portion to engage and hold lever 42 against forces urging the valve toward a closed position. Latch 50 is secured to a screw 51 carrying a thumb nut 52 supported by a block 54 attached to stationary frame member 48 for motion vertically relative to said member 48 to adjust the valve orifice. By virtue of this adjustability feature, the valve may be regulated as to flow therethrough in order to compensate for variations in solvent fiow and thus assure a substantially constant solvent liquid level in the washing compartment.

-A tube57 connects reservoir 34 with a pump 58 which in turn is connected to a filter 59 by a tube 60. A conduit 62 consisting of several segments leads from filter 59 to vessel 10 but is connected by means of a T fitting to a pipe 63 leading back to reservoir 34. A segment of pipe 63 adjacent to said T fitting is formed to define a bend of substantially U-shape, the ends of said segment being directed substantially straight downwardly and the mid section of said bend being situated substantially abovethe uppermost portion'of conduit 62 and above the normal solvent liquid level in the washer 10, and having a small vent in its top portion to prevent syphon effects.

Valve means 68 is provided in pipe 62, comprising suitably a small and simple, fast-acting one-way valve. This valve maybe equipped to close automatically by means under "pressure resiliently applied through tension spring 71. Thus, when solenoid 75 is actuated in response 'to some predetermined operation, as when the delivery of solvent to the washing vessel has reached a predetermined stage, tongue 77 may be withdrawn from locking engagement with lever 70, whereupon valve 68 is closed by this spring 71. It will be understood by those skilled in the art to which the present invention pertains, that various electrical circuits of conventional design may be used to accomplish this purpose and that this invention contemplates manual as well as automatic operation of this valve to the foregoing ends in which event the spring is not required.

Having thus described the present invention so that those skilled in the art will be able to gain a better understanding and practice the same, I state that what I desire to secure by Letters Patent is defined in what is claimed.

What is claimed is:

1. Dry cleaning apparatus comprising a washing compartment, a reservoir for dry cleaning solvent, a filter for said solvent, and apump connected to the reservoir and to the filter for drawing solvent from the reservoir and forcing it through the filter to the washing compartment, a conduit connecting the filter and washing compartment 'for solvent flow to said compartment, means including a pipe communicating with said conduit and with the reservoir and having a portion between the point of connection to said conduit and reservoir disposed upwardly to a level substantially above the normal solvent liquid level in the said compartment and above the uppermost portion of said conduit, and a valve in said conduit and disposed between the pipe and compartment to'control flow of solvent to the washing compartment and to the reservoir.

2. Dry cleaning apparatus comprising a washing compartment, a reservoir for dry cleaning solvent, a filter for said solvent, and a pump connected to the reservoir and to the filter for drawing solvent from the reservoir and delivering it to the filter, a conduit connecting the filter and washing compartment for solvent flow to said compartment, said conduit having an opening spaced from its ends, means including a continuously open pipe communicating with said conduit through said opening and with the reservoir and having a bend portion between said conduit and reservoir directed generally upwardly and disposed substantially abovethe normal solventliquid level in the said compartment and above the uppermost portion of said conduit, and valve means in the conduit between the pipe and the washing compartment to permit flow of filtered: solvent to the washing compartment when the valve is'open and to return filtered solvent to the reservoir when the valve is closed.

3. Dry cleaning apparatus comprising a washing compartment, a reservoir for dry cleaning solvent, a filter for said solvent, and a pump connected to the reservoir and to the filter=for drawing solvent from the reservoir and forcing it through the filter to the washing compartment, a conduit connecting the filter and washing compartment for transmitting solvent to the compartment, means including apipe providing a continuous uninterrupted passageway between said conduit and the reservoir and having a generally U-shaped portion between said conduit an reservoir, said U-shaped portion having ends disposed substantially downwardly and its bend section situated substantially above the normal solvent liquid level in the said compartment andabove the uppermost portion of said conduit and having a vent in its upper extremity to prevent siphoning action in said pipe, and a valve in said conduit and disposed between the pipe and the compartment to control flow of solvent to the washing compartment and to the reservoir.

4. In dry cleaning apparatus including a washing compartment, a reservoir for dry cleaning solvent, a filter for said solvent communicating with said reservoir, a pump to draw solvent from the reservoir and deliver it to the washing compartment, and a condenser for liquifying solvent vapors flowing from the washing compartmentthe combination of a conduit connecting the'filte'r and washing compartment for solvent flow to said compartment, said conduit having an opening spaced from its ends, means including a pipe communicating with said conduit through said opening and with the reservoir and having a portion between said conduit and reservoir disposed upwardly to conduct solvent liquid to a level substantially above the normal solvent liquid level in the said compartment and above the uppermost portion of said conduit, valve means associated with said conduit to control flow of solvent therethrough between said opening and the washing compartment, and means for separating water from condensed solvent, said waterseparating means including a vessel having a slot-like aperture horizontally disposed in an upper side wall portion, a stand-pipe in said vessel and having its lower end portion substantially below said aperture, said stand pipe having an intake opening substantially above said vessel aperture for receiving liquid from the condenser and having a water outlet opening in its upper portion substantially above the said aperture, a reserve vessel communicating with the first vessel through the aper ture and a conduit extending between the reserve vessel and the reservoir for permitting return of accumulated solvent to the reservoir.

5. In dry cleaning apparatus including a washing compartment, a reservoir for dry cleaning solvent, and a condenser for liquifying solvent vapors flowing from the washing compartment, the combination of means for separating water from the condensed solvent, said waterseparating means including a vessel having a horizontally disposed slot-like aperture in an upper side wall portion thereof, a stand-pipe disposed in said vessel and having its lower end portion substantially below said aperture, said stand-pipe having a solvent intake opening substantially above said vessel aperture and having a water outlet opening in its upper portion substantially above the said aperture, and a reserve vessel communicating with the first vessel through the aperture and adapted to be connected to the reservoir by a conduit.

6. In a dry cleaning apparatus, the combination of a washing compartment, means for removing solvent from said compartment in liquid form, and means for removing solvent from said compartment in vaporous form including an exhaust fan and a manifold, a condenser connected to the said manifold for liquifying vapors so removed, and means for separating water from the condensed solvent comprising a vessel having a horizontally disposed slot-like aperture in an upper side wall thereof, a stand-pipe disposed in said vessel and having its lower end portion substantially below said aperture, said stand-pipe having a condensate intake comprising a conduit connected to said condenser and extending downwardly into the interior of the stand-pipe from the upper portion thereof, and a water outlet in the upper part of said stand-pipe and substantially above said aperture, and a reserve vessel communicating with said aperture for receiving solvent therethrough.

7. In a dry cleaning apparatus, the combination of a Washing compartment, means for removing solvent from said compartment in vaporous form including an exhaust fan and a manifold, a condenser connected to the said manifold for liquifying vapors so removed, and means for separating water from the condensed solvent comprising a vessel having a horizontally disposed slot-like aperture in an upper side wall thereof, a stand-pipe disposed in said vessel and having its lower end portion substantially below said aperture, said stand-pipe having a condensate intake comprising a conduit connected to said condenser and extending downwardly into the interior of the stand-pipe from the upper portion thereof, and a water outlet in the upper part of said stand-pipe and substantially above said aperture, and a reserve vessel communicating with said aperture for receiving solvent therethrough.

8. In a dry cleaning apparatus, the combination of a washing compartment, a reservoir for dry cleaning solvent disposed below the washing compartment, a drainpipe connected to the washing compartment and the reservoir and a flow regulating valve in the drain pipe for continuously draining solvent from the washing compartment to the reservoir at a predetermined rate, a solvent filter and a pump having the inlet thereof connected to the reservoir and the outlet connected to the filter, a conduit connected to the filter and to the washing compartment for transmitting filtered solvent from the filter to the washing compartment, and an on-oif valve in the conduit, and means for returning filtered solvent to the reservoir when the valve is closed including a pipe connected to the conduit ahead of the valve and to the reservoir, and an inverted U-shaped portion in the pipe extending above the level of the conduit and the level of solvent in the Washing compartment and having a vent in its upper extremity to prevent siphoning action in said pipe, whereby solvent liquid may be continuously filtered both during washing operations and when the Washing compartment is being used for extracting and drying operations.

9. In a dry cleaning apparatus, the combination of a washing compartment for holding dry cleaning solvent and washing garments therein, means for continuously filtering a part of the dry cleaning solvent during washing operations comprising a reservoir, and means for continuously draining solvent from the washing compartment to the reservoir at a predetermined rate, a solvent filter and a pump having the inlet thereof connected to the reservoir, and the outlet connected to the filter, a conduit connected to the filter and to the washing compartment for transmitting filtered solvent from the filter to the Washing compartment, and means for continuously filtering solvent when the Washing compartment is emptied of liquid solvent including an on-olf valve in the conduit and means for returning filtered solvent to the reservoir when the valve is closed, means for removing solvent and water vapors from the washing compartment including an exhaust fan and a manifold, a condenser connected to the said manifold for liquifying vapors so removed, means for separating water from the condensed solvent, and a reserve vessel communicating with said water separator for receiving solvent therethrough.

10. In a dry cleaning apparatus, the combination of a washing compartment for holding dry cleaning solvent and washing garments therein, means for continuously filtering a part of the dry cleaning solvent during Washing operations comprising a reservoir disposed below the washing compartment, a drainpipe connected to the washing compartment and to the reservoir and a flow regulating valve in the drainpipe for continuously draining solvent from the washing compartment to the reservoir at a predetermined rate, a solvent filter and a pump having the inlet thereof connected to the reservoir, and the outlet connected to the filter, a conduit connected to the filter and to the washing compartment for transmitting filtered solvent from the filter to the washing compartment, and means for continuously filtering solvent when the Washing compartment is emptied of liquid solvent including an on-otf valve in the conduit and means for returning filtered solvent to the reservoir when the valve is closed including a pipe connected to the conduit ahead of the valve and to the reservoir and an inverted. J-shaped portion in the pipe extending above the level of the conduit and the level of the solvent in the washing compartment, means for removing solvent and water vapors from the washing compartment including an exhaust fan and a manifold, a condenser connected to the said manifold for liquifying vapors so removed, means for separating water from the condensed solvent comprising a vessel having a horizontally disposed slot-like aperture in an upper side wall thereof, a stand-pipe in said vessel having its lower end portion substantially below said aperture, said standpipe having a condensate intake comprising a conduit into the interior of the stand-pipe from the upper portion thereof and a water outlet in the upper part of the standpipe and substantially above the aperture, and a reserve vessel communicating with said aperture for receiving solvent therethrough.

11. The invention in accordance with claim 10, including a conduit connected from the reserve vessel to the reservoir for returning the separated solvent to the reservoir for subsequent reuse in washing operations.

12. The invention'in accordance with claim 10, said on-off valve comprising a rotary valve having a lever therefor, a solenoid device having an element adapted to engage the lever and hold the valve in an open position and a spring connected to the lever for pulling the valve to a closed position upon energization of the solenoid to disengage the lever.

' 13. Dry cleaning apparatus comprising a washing compartment, a reservoir for dry cleaning solvent, 9. filter for said solvent, a conduit leading from the reservoir to the filter, a pump in said conduit, a pipe line leading from the filter to the washing compartment, a valve in said pipe line and a constantly open pipe leading to the reservoir from said pipe line between the filter and said valve, said pipe having a generally U-shaped part disposed above the normal liquid level in said compartment and having a vacuum breaking vent, said pump serving to draw solvent continuously from said reservoir and to propel it through;

said filter and pipe line and into the compartment when the valve is open and into the reservoir when the valve is closed.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 774,025 Barbe Nov. 1, 1904 1,271,599 Messer ,July 9,1918 1,385,724 Smith et al. July 26, 1 921 1,404,467 Mohr Jan. 24, 1922 1,545,091 Flowers July 7, 1925 1,613,135 Scherer Jan. 4, 1927 1,649,572 Clark Nov. 15, 1927 1,669,235 Fenton May 8, 1928 1,795,006 Boiney Mar. 3, 1931 1,814,212 Glover July 14, .1931 1,947,873 Norquistetal Feb. 20, 1934 1,990,691 'Hatfield Feb. 12 1935 2,022,791 Tetlow Dec. 3, 1935 2,087,775 Matthews July 20, 1937 2,114,776 Davis Apr. 19, 1938 2,313,539 Groome Mar. 9, 1943 2,630,694 Creswick Mar. 10, 1953

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2928268 *Aug 3, 1956Mar 15, 1960Western Laundry Machinery CompCleaning system with automatic by-pass
US3097164 *Jan 29, 1960Jul 9, 1963Noubar S AbdalianDry cleaning process
US3246493 *Dec 24, 1963Apr 19, 1966Hupp CorpDry cleaning apparatus
US3444708 *May 8, 1967May 20, 1969Dow Chemical CoDrycleaning apparatus
US4283279 *Jul 18, 1980Aug 11, 1981Kleen-Rite, Inc.Means for mixing with steam; safety valve
US4444625 *Apr 18, 1983Apr 24, 1984Kleen-Rite, Inc.Method and apparatus for reclaiming drycleaning fluid
Classifications
U.S. Classification68/18.00R, 8/142, 210/540, 210/167.1, 210/532.1
International ClassificationD06F39/08, D06F43/02, D06F43/00
Cooperative ClassificationD06F43/02, D06F39/08
European ClassificationD06F39/08, D06F43/02