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Publication numberUS2737040 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 6, 1956
Filing dateSep 4, 1951
Priority dateSep 4, 1951
Publication numberUS 2737040 A, US 2737040A, US-A-2737040, US2737040 A, US2737040A
InventorsRobert J Anderson
Original AssigneeRobert J Anderson
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Washing machine
US 2737040 A
Abstract  available in
Images(5)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 6, 1956 R. J. ANDERSON WASHING MACHINE 5 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Sept. 4, 1951 W. m m m m. N m P V m u 4 S m March 6, 1956 R. J. ANDERSON WASHING MACHINE 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Sept. 4, 1951 INVENTOR.

P05627 JflNDEPSO/V OH Cy 7 H/S HTTOPNEYS JIE. Z

March 6, 1956 Filed Sept. 4, 1951 R. J. ANDERSON WASHING MACHINE 5 Sheets-Sheet 3 INVENTOR.

P036787 J flA/DEPSON H/S 7/ TTOP/VE V5 March 6, 1956 R. J. ANDERSON WASHING MACHINE 5 Sheets-Sheet 4 Filed Sept. 4, 1951 w m w m 2,737,040 Patented Mar. 6, 1956 WASHING MACHINE Robert J. Anderson, Sidney, Ohio Application September 4, 1951, Serial No. 244,934

24 Claims. (Cl. 68--23) This invention relates to a washing machine and more particularly to a washing machine automatically operating through a series of cycles.

Automatic washing machines have been manufactured and sold rather extensively over a period of several years. However, these washing machines have several weaknesses. One notable weakness is a tendency of rinsing the clothes in water that has a lower temperature than the water used in washing the clothes. It is definitely known that hot water expands the fibers in clothes, cold water contracts the same, thereby the dirt and detergent cling to the meshes of the fibers, causing gray colored clothes when rinsing in cold water. This condition is evidenced by the fact that present day automatic washing machines are using several spray rinses in an attempt to clear the clothes of dirt and detergents. Furthermore, many of the automatic washing machines now on the market are provided with a perforated liner arranged in spaced relation from the main body of the tub, so as to provide a cavity between the wall of the tub and the liner for the circulation of the water. This has been found necessary with some constructions in order to obtain adequate water circulation, at the expense of sanitation, in that the cavity between the liner and the main body of the tub provides an inaccessible breeding place for germs, bacteria and fungi. Furthermore, some of the washing machines provided with a revolving tub are susceptible to very marked vibrations caused by unbalanced conditions of the weight of the clothes in the tub. Furthermore, vertically mounted tubs which oscillate inner washing devices require counterbalancing weight means to bring the tub while spinning out the water into dynamic balance.

An object of this invention is to provide a ramp and a tub moving in unison, the ramp being so designed as to distribute the clothes in the tub to cause the clothes to move towards the periphery of the tub, thereby subjecting the clothes to the greatest agitation, the ramp being so shaped as to raise the clothes upwardly and outwardly when the ramp and tub are oscillated in one direction and to forcefully shake or vibrate the clothes when the ramp and tub move in the opposite direction.

Another object of this invention is to provide a tub and a ramp that is integral, the tub gradually increasing in diameter from bottom to top, so that as the tub and ramp are spun in one direction, the centrifugal force will cause the water to flow out over the top edge of the tub into a drainage compartment.

Another object of this invention is to provide a tub and a ramp shaker so designed that the clothes and Water will be thoroughly shaken or vibrated without the aid of extraneous pumps or water circulating means.

Another object of this invention is to provide a contrel mechanism so designed that the washing machine will carry out the several cycles required to wash the clothes, which cycles may include heating the water, adding the hot water to .the tub, oscillating the tub and then spinning the tub to discharge the water. While these operations are taking place, a new supply of water is being heated in readiness for a succeeding operation, the temperature of the water being automatically raised to a predetermined temperature, at which time the heating mechanism is cut off. This water that has been heated during the first cycle of the washing operation is added to the tub after the water for the first washing operation has been drained from the tub, the clothes being again agitated, so as to remove the dirt and the detergent from the clothes. When this operation has been completed, the tub is automatically spun for a period sufilcient to extract most of the water from the clothes, after which the washing operation is completed and the washing machine stops. During the second half of the washing cycle a new batch of water is heated, in readiness for a succeeding Wash.

Another object of this invention is to so suspend the tub that unbalanced conditions are so distributed with respect to a given mass as to minimize the vibrations caused by an unbalanced mass. This has been accomplished by mounting the tub upon a shaft, the tub being supported upon the upper end of the shaft a considerable distance above the center of gravity thereof. The shaft is provided with a mass gyrating with it on the lower end thereof, to counteract the effect of unbalanced masses.

Another object is to provide a shaft for supporting the tub used in spinning the clothes that is hung in a floating support, this floating support including a driving motor, a gear case and the other driving equipment, so that the flexible support means counteracts the unbalanced condition that may result by unequal distribution of the mass in the tub.

Another object is to permit a smooth elliptical oscillation. This is accomplished by the use of a multiple formed flat leaf metallic spring fixedly fastened to the gear housing column, the outer end of the spring being cup-shaped to retain a suitable friction molded material, permitting a smooth elliptical oscillation.

Another object of this invention is to dampen out unbalanced vibrations. This has been accomplished by applying a resilient pressure on the under side of a trustum-conical surface of a water drain container diaphragm.

Other objects and advantages reside in the construction of parts, the combination thereof and the mode of operation, as will become more apparent from the following description.

Referring to the drawings, Figure 1 is a vertical cross sectional view of the preferred embodiment of my washing machine, wherein a section of the tub is taken substantially on the line 1-1 in Figure 7.

Figure 2 is a cross sectional View, taken substantially one the line 2-2 of Figure 1.

Figure 3 is a fragmentary, cross sectional view, taken substantially on the line 33 of Figure 1.

Figure 4 is a fragmentary, cross sectional view, taken substantially on the line 44 of Figure 1.

Figure 5 is a fragmentary, cross sectional view, taken substantially on the line 55 of Figure 1.

Figure 6 is a fragmentary, vertical, cross sectional view of a portion of the tub.

Figure 7 is a cross sectional view of the tub, taken substantially on the section line 7-7 of Figure 6.

Figure 8 is a schematic view of the control mechanism.

Figure 9 is a diagrammatic illustration of the effect of the unbalanced forces.

Figure 10 is a diagrammatic view of the operation of the oscillating mechanism.

Figure 11 is an illustration of the cam for actuating the switch mechanism of the control mechanism shown in Figure 8.

Figure 12 is an enlarged perspective view of a portion of the upper margin of the tub.

Figure 13 is a fragmentary cross sectional view, taken substantially on the line 13-13 of Figure 12.

In the drawings, the reference character indicates the lower portion of a casing or cabinet mounted upon a plurality of supports 22. An upper rectangular member 24 is attached to the casing 20 along the seam 26. A marginal cover portion 28, provided with an annular opening, is attached to the top of member 24. A lid 36 is used in closing the opening in the cover portion 2 The upper portion of the casing 20 supports a diaphragm member 32 provided with an upwardly directed and centrally disposed conical portion 34, which will be described more fully later. The diaphragm member 32 supports a Water heater tank 40 provided with electric heater coils 42 and an intake water pipe 44. A thermocouple 46 is attached to the Water pipe 44, shown in Figure 2, and is used for measuring the temperature of the water in the tank 49. The lower end of the water pipe is provided with a water dispenser consisting of a tightly coiled spring having a length equal to the entire length of the heater 42. This coil spring is attached to the end of the pipe 44. The outer end of the spring is closed by a cap 43. The convolutions of the spring are normally in contact with each other, so that the spring is practically water-tight. When the water is turned on, pressure is created in the spring, tending to lengthen the spring, thereby separating the convolutions a slight distance, so as to permit the water to ooze out between the convolutions, thereby preventing gushing of the water.

When water is to be admitted to the tank 40, a suitable electromagneticaliy controlled valve 52 is opened, so as to supply water from mains. The tank 40 is provided with a spout overhanging the margin of a tub 62, provided with a substantially ogee-shaped marginal flange 64, having a plurality of apertures or diagnoal louver slots 66, best seen in Figures 12 and 13, the closed side of the louver to be on the ramp spin rotation position. The function of the louvers is to eliminate air friction drag, aiding jet water extraction and to permit rapid entry of water into the tub in the oscillation cycle, which starts near the end of the fill cycle.

In the event the washing machine is to remain idle for a period of time, the water in the tank 4t) may be drained by opening the drain cock 67 in the bottom of the tank. The bottom of the tub 62 is provided with a ramp 7t? integral with the base and projecting upwardly. This ramp has some of the characteristics in common with the ramp disclosed in my Patent No. 2,230,477, patented February 4, 1941 for Washing Machine; but in the patented device the ramp is oscillated independently of the tub.

As may best be seen by referring to Figures 6 and 7, the ramp 70 consists of a gradually inclined slope 72 and an oppositely disposed slope portion 74. The portion 74 may be practically vertically disposed. The center portion 76 is frustum-conical, so as to provide a cavity for the support for the tub. In Figure 7, the top plan view of the tub shows a plurality of contour lines 1 to 13 inclusive that are taken on the elevations 1 to 13 shown in Figure 6. This ramp has been so designed that when the tub rotates in a clockwise direction, as shown in Figure 7, the clothes and the water are gradually raised upwardly upon the inclined slope 72. When the tub is rotated or oscillated in a counterclockwise direction, as shown in Figure 7, the steep portion '74 of the ramp causes a violent agitation of the clothes.

The tub is provided with a plurality of inwardly directed tapered ribs 80 positioned in spaced relation from the extremities 82 of the ramp. These ribs 8% aid in agitating the water and the clothes as the tub is oscillated.

As may best be seen by referring to Figure 1, the tub is supported upon a shaft 1% having mounted near the top thereof a splined coupling 1&2 fixedly secured by bolts to a conical supporting member 104 projecting upwardly into the frustum-conical portion of the ramp. Member 104 is fixedly secured to the under side of the tub by the outwardly projecting horizontally disposed diaphragm portion 105 by Welding or in any suitable manner. The shaft 100 abuts a curved plate 106, secured to the under side of the apex of the frustum-conical portion, so that the weight of the tub is transmitted directly to the shaft 100. The coupling 102 is splined to the shaft. End thrust bearing 110, as described, is an end face water seal and the rubber 112 is in compression only as a means to hold the end face seal in position and prevent leakage around the shaft. The tub is supported on the end of the shaft by reinforcing member 106. The frustum-conical water shield 112 is mounted upon an upwardly directed annular flange 114 integral with the conical portion 34.

An annular member 116 is provided with a flange 118 fixedly attached to conical portion 34. Member 116 has mounted thereon a plurality of downwardly and outwardly extending rods 120. These flexible rods 120 provide a support for the gear casing and the driving mechanism for the shaft 1&10. The gear casing and the driving mechanism, which will be described more fully later, may be referred to as a floating support, in that the cover member 122 for a gear housing or casing 132 is resiliently attached to the flexible rods 120 by means of rubber bushings 121, each seated against a collar 126a mounted near the lower end of the rods 120. The lower portion of the annular member 116 supports a limiting collar member 124 made of nylon or any other suitable material. This collar member 124 functions as a snubber for the shaft 1% in the event the unbalanced condition of the tub, the contents thereof and the parts carried thereby should cause the shaft to deflect beyond certain limits. in that event, the collar 124 will limit the movement of the shaft, so as to prevent the tub from swinging into engagement with the walls of the cabinet.

The shaft 100 is journalled in the ball bearing 131) fixedly mounted in a tubular portion of the gear housing 132 secured to the plate member 122. The shaft is also journalled in a bearing 134 mounted in the bottom of the gear casing 132, as clearly shown in Figure l.

A collar 136, which may he made of rubber or any other suitable material, is resiliently and frictionally held upon the shaft 100 and positioned above the bearing 139. If water should be spilled so as to flow down along the shaft 100, collar member 136, really an umbrella, would cause the water to be drained from the shaft to prevent the water from passing into the bearing 13!} and into the gear housing 132 which forms a casing for the driving mechanism, which will be described more fully later.

For washing clothes, the tube is oscillated. This has been accomplished by an oscillating mechanism which will now be described. An electric motor 14% is provided with a pulley 142 keyed to the armature shaft and drives a V-belt 144 used in driving a V-bclt 146 keyed to a shaft 148. The V-belt 144 also passes over the pulley 150, as best seen in Figure 5. This pulley 159 is keyed to a shaft 152 used in actuating a pump 154, the frame of which is pivotally supported by a bolt 156. The belt 144 is tightened and held in taut position by a bolt 15S passing through a slot 161) in the frame member for the pump 154. The pump is driven at all times when the motor 149 is energized. The slot 161) is arcuate and concentric with the bolt 156.

The shaft 148 terminates in a pinion 17:) meshing with a gear 172, seen in Figure 1, rotatably mounted upon a shaft 174 secured to the frame 132. The gear 172 is provided wi h an eccentrically mounted annular flange 176, having mounted thereon a sleeve 178 engaging the sides of a channel 180 in rocker arm member 182 pivotally mounted upon a pintle 184 and terminating in gear teeth 186 meshing with a pinion 188 mounted on the shaft 10%. This piniodlSS terminates in a collar or flange 190 provided with a pair of arcuate slots adapted to straddle a pin 192 extending through the shaft 100. The pin 192 cooperates with the flange 190 to form a clutch for drivingly connecting the pinion 188 to the shaft 100. The pinion 188 is biased upwardly by a spring 194 positioned between the pinion 188 and the bearing 134. It can readily be seen that when the motor drives the belt 144, the pulley 146 is rotated and with it the shaft 148 and the pinion 17f) meshing with the gear 172 which rocks the rocker arm 182 provided with the gear teeth 186 meshing with the pinion 188 that drives the shaft 100 through the members 199 and 192 when in the position shown in Figure 1. This oscillates the tub 62 together with the ramp 70 and agitates the contents of the tub.

The members 194) and 192 may be disengaged by a flanged collar 2% that engages the margin of the pinion 188. The pin 192 has a length slightly less than the inside diameter of the annular flanger of the collar 200. The members 190 and 192 are separated by means of an electromagnet 204 provided with an armature 206 connected to a link 268 fixedly attached to an arcuate cam 210 mounted upon a suitable pivot, so that the cam 210 actuates the collar 206 downwardly so as to actuate the pinion 18S downwardly against the force of the compression spring 194 to cause the clutch member 190 to move out of engagement with the clutch member or pin 192. The electromagnet 264 is energized at the proper intervals of time by a control mechanism used in controlling the cycles of operation of the washing machine. This electromagnet is energizes at the completion of one washing operation.

In order to drain the water from the tub 62, it is merely necessary to spin the tub at a sufficiently high speed to cause the centrifugal force acting upon the water to force the water upwardly over the edge of the tub, throwing the water outwardly against the upper rectangular member 24 of the cabinet, permitting the water to accumulate in the annular channel of the diaphragm member 32, the water draining through a sump and through a suitable drain pipe 220 connected to a pump 154 driven by the belt 144. The mechanism for spinning the tub will now be described.

The armature shaft of the electric motor 140 also has keyed thereto a pulley 240 driving a V-belt 242 passing over a pulley 244 keyed to the lower end of the shaft 190. A belt tightener and idler 246 mounted upon a link 248 and pivoted about the pivot 250 is actuated by an armature 252 through a spring 254 by an electromagnet 256 into engagement with the belt 242 whenever the electromagnet 256 is energized. Upon the belt 242 being tightened, the motor drives the shaft 160 at a constant speed in one direction and with it the tub 62, so as to expel the water from the tub by means of centrifugal force, as described above. The electromagnet 256 is only energized when the electromagnet 264 is energized, so as to declutch members 190 and 192, which permits rotation of the shaft 100 and the tub 62.

As is well known to those skilled in the art, unbalanced conditions in rotating bodies set up parasitic vibrations. Furthermore, it is well known that unbalanced conditions in one plane are reflected in other planes of the rotating body. Also, when the rotating body reaches the critical speed, the body will rotate about its own center of gravity. Somewhere between the extremity of the rotating body there may be a neutral axis where there is no vibration.

In the present device, if there is an unbalanced condition in the tub, caused by the mass of clothes or for some other reason, the mounting for the shaft 104), including the gear casing 132 and the parts carried thereby, will be permitted to vibrate due to the resiliency of the rods 120. The gear casing 132 functions as a stabilizing force. This has been illustrated schematically in Figure 9. This would take place even though the parts carried by the shaft below the neutral axis indicated schematically at 265 may be in perfect balance. In other words,

even though the driving mechanism mounted in the gear casing 132 and associated therewith may set up no vibrations, unbalanced conditions in the tub will cause the parts below the neutral axis 265 to vibrate. In other words, the gear casing and the parts mounted therein and associated therewith function as a stabilizer to dampen the vibrations that may be caused by unbalanced conditions in the tub. The position of the neutral axis 265 is dependent upon the relative weights carried by and associated with the shaft 100. As may be seen by referring to Figure 9, the rods will be flexed into a dot-dash position 12% when the unbalanced load swings the gear case towards the right, as viewed in Figure 9. When the gear case is oscillated in the opposite direction by the unbalanced load, the supports 120 will flex in the opposite direction.

When the water has been drained from the tub 62, rotation of the tub is arrested. This is accomplished by means of a brake mechanism, best seen in Figure 3, that includes a brake member 260 rotatably mounted upon the shaft and spring urged by a spring 262 against a brake member 264 secured to the pulley 244. Normally, the brake member 260 rotates with the pulley 244. Rotation of the brake member 260 is interrupted by a lever 266 pivoted upon the end of the shaft 174 and provided with a pawl 268 engaging a suitable opening in an irregular shaped flange 270 forming the outer margin of the brake member 269. The pawl 268 is projected into one of the openings in the irregular flange 270 by means of an electromagnet 272, having its armature 274 connected by means of a spring 276 to the end of the lever 266. Whenever the electromagnet 272 is energized, the pawl 26. is projected into one of the apertures 236 in the flange 27d, thereby causing a braking action between the brake member 260 and the pulley 244, so as to rapidly stop the rotation of the tub 62. This braking action takes place only when the electromagnet 264 and the electromagnet 272 are energized.

In view of the fact that the succeeding operation of the washing machine is either to wash a new batch of clothes or to wash the batch already in the machine a second time, it follows that the next operation is to oscillate the shaft 108 and the tub 62. This takes place when all of the electromagnets are re-energized, at which time the clutch member engages the clutch member 192, causing the rocker arm 182 to oscillate the shaft 100 and the tub 62. When this oscillation first takes place in a counterclockwise direction of rotation of the shaft 100, as viewed in Figure 3, the pawl 268 will continue to hold member 266 in position, thereby applying the brake on at least a portion of the oscillation in a counterblockwise direction, as viewed in Figure 3. When the rocker arm reverses its direction so as to actuate the shaft 100 and the tub 62 supported thereon in a clockwise direction, as viewed in Figure 3, the bevelled portion 282 of the pawl 268 will be actuated by the portion of the flange 270 bounding one of the apertures 286), so as to knock the pawl out of the recess. Due to the fact that the flange 70 does not form a true circle, a portion of the flange 270, namely, the straight portion 284, there being three of them as viewed in Figure 3, will function as a cam. to force the detent or pawl 268 out of the path of the aperture 280 when the oscillation is reversed to the opposite direction.

The control mechanism and the cycles of operation have been illustrated schematically in Figures 8 and 11. Due to the fact that the auxiliary water heater tank 4%) is always full, in that it is automatically maintained at a filled condition by a control mechanism, it can readily be seen that if the washing machine has not been in use for a long period of time, the water in the tank 40 will have the same temperature as the room temperature, or substantially so. The water flow is controlled by selecting a proper size aperture in a metering rubber disc mounted in the electromagnetic water valve. It is preferable to connect the water heater tank 40 to the usual household hot water supply. The household water supply is usually of inadequate capacity for the continuous operation of an automatic washer. Furthermore, in the usual household hot water heater the temperature of the water goes down as water is Withdrawn for succeeding washing operations. Much better results are obtained if the temperature is maintained constant during the wash cycle for each batch of clothes.

The first thing the operator does in initiating the washing operation is to energize the heater coil &2, push the temperature control 392 and turn to the desired temperature. This causes the heater coil 42 to be energized. If the washing machine has not been used for some time, the water in the tank 44 probably has the same temperature as the room temperature. it takes a few minutes for this water to heat from room temperature to the desired temperature. While the water is heating, the clothes may be sorted into the various batches, as is well known to those skilled in the art. For example, white clothes in one pile, fastcolor colored clothes in a second pile, woolens in a third pile, et cetera. Soap or other detergents may be put into the tub and the first batch of clothes placed therein. After the water has been heated as indicated on the temperature control dial, the timer control switch 3453 is actuated from Git position to Start position and switch knob 316 is pushed to begin the wash cycle.

The thermocouple 46 shown in Figure 2 energizes the relay and the temperature control thermostat so as to maintain the water in the tank 40 at the desired washing temperature. As may best be seen by referring to the schematic wiring diagram shown in Figure 8, the push button switch 3th) is connected in parallel with the cam actuated switch 33 for energizing the fill valve solenoid 34 0. This permits the operator to add water to the tub 62 in addition to the water added by the fill valve solenoid 340. For some purposes it may be desirable to use a larger quantity of water than metered out by the solenoid 340. The cam 320 has been shown schematically in Figure 11. An armature 342 is provided with a cam follower portion 34-4 contacting the cam 320. An extension 346 carries a pair of contacts 348 and 350. As the cam follower 344 is raised, the contact 359 closes the switch 332. When the cam follower 344 drops into a depression on the cam 320, the contact 348 closes the switch 339. By this arrangement, two switches are actuated by the same cam and the same cam follower. The cams 322 and 323 and the switches actuated thereby are single acting cams and switches.

After the tub 62 has been filled with water and the cam 32% opens the switch 338, the switch 336 is also opened by the cam 322, in that this switch is normally closed to permit the clutch member 190 to be disengaged from the pin 192. By de-energizing the solenoid 204, the clutch members are engaged, which causes the tub to oscillate. As soon as the wash cycle has been completed, the switch 336 i again energized, so as to disconnect the clutch members. The switch 332 is then closed, so as to energize the solenoid 256, which places a tension on the belt 242, so as to spin the tub 62. As the tub spins, the water is drained from the tub through the action of centrifugal forces upon the water.

When the spinning operation has been completed, the switch 332 is opened by the earn 320. This is followed by the closing of the switch 334 by the cam 323, which energizes the electromagnet 272, to thereby apply the brake to the shaft 100, so as to arrest the movement of the tub.

As soon as the water in the tub has been added to the desired. level, the cycles of operation are repeated, in that by this time all of the electromagnets excepting electromagnet 2i34 have been de-energized and the motor 140 started, so as to repeat the operations. However, the

period of time of each operation may not be the same. When the operations have all been completed, the washing machine is automatically disconnected from the power line.

Although the washing machine lends itself to various dimensions and lengths of cycles, the following is an example of a washing machine for domestic use. The heater tank for the hot water may have capacity of fifteen gallons; but ordinarily, only eleven gallons are used in the washing tub at a time. This excess of four gallons permits the emptying of water from the heater tank into the tub without greatly cooling the water added to the tub by the new charge of water added to the heater tank. A five kw. heater element may be used in the hot water heater tank, which heats the water in the heater tank from 70 to 140 in a comparatively short period of time. The oscillation of the tub, which may be referred to as the washing periods, may consist of eight minute periods. The total time required for completing a wash from the time that the water in the heater tank has been raised to the proper temperature may be on the order of twenty-six minutes. The tub, during the spinning operation may be rotated at a speed of 600 to 860 R. P. M., depending upon the gear ratio and the source of power. The entire cycle for completing a wash may be increased or decreased by changing the speed of the motor 312, or by changing the gear ratio between the motor 312 and the cam shaft. The relative time elements of the various operations may be changed by changing the cams 326 and 322.

As may best be seen by referring to the diagrammatic view shown in Figure 10, the rocker arm 182 completes the stroke in one direction when the eccentrically mounted annular flange 176 travels through the angle B and the rocker arm 182 travels through the stroke in the opposite direction when the eccentrically mounted annular flange 176 travels through the angle 35% minus B. However, from Figure 10 it can be seen that the angle B is much smaller than the angle 360 minus B. As a result thereof, the rocker arm travels faster in one direction than in the opposite. Thus, by arranging the direction of inclination of the gradual slopes of the ramp, such that the wash travels up the ramp during the fast movement of the rocker arm 182, it is possible to cause the tub to oscillate in the opposite direction while the clothes are being agitated by the steep portion '74 of the ramp during the slow movement of the rocker arm. The driving mechanism for the rocker arm, together with the arrangement of the ramps, results in a very gradual raising of the clothes in the wash when the tub is oscillated in one direction and a violent agitation when the tub is oscillated in the opposite direction, thereby effectively washing the clothes. The washing operation may be referred to as a peripheral washing operation, in that the shape of the ramp is such that there is a tendency for the clothes to be urged'upwards towards the periphery of the tub, so that the ribs scrub the clothes.

Although the preferred embodiment of the device has been described, it will be understood that within the purview of this invention various changes may be made in the form, details, proportion and arrangement of parts, the combination thereof and mode of operation, which generally stated consist in a device capable of carrying out the objects set forth, as disclosed and defined in the appended claims.

Having thus described my invention, I claim:

1. In a washing machine, a tub mounted for oscillatory movement and spinning movement, said tub having an elongated transversely disposed ramp projecting upwardly from the bottom thereof and integral therewith, said ramp having a pair of gradually inclined portions directed in the same general direction with respect to the axis of rotation of the tub, and a pair of vertically disposed portions opposite the inclined portions so that as 9 the tub is oscillated in one direction the wash in the tub is gradually raised and when the tub is oscillated in the opposite direction the wash is violently agitated.

2. A tub according to claim 1, wherein a portion of the central portion of the ramp constitutes a conic section.

3. A tub according to claim 1, wherein the wall of the tub is provided with inwardly directed rib portions arranged in spaced relation from the extremities of the ramp.

4. A tub according to claim 1, wherein the outer wall of the tub has a centrally disposed integral ramp and said tub diverges from the bottom to the top so that as the tub is spun the Water is spilled over the top of the tub by centrifugal force.

5. A tub according to claim 1, wherein the maximum length of the ramp is less than the minimum external diameter of the tub.

6. In a washing machine a tub mounted for oscillatory movement, said tub having an elongate transversely disposed ramp projecting upwardly from the bottom thereof and integral therewith, a frustum-conical member projecting upwardly into the center portion of the ramp, means for supporting the tub, said means including a shaft projecting upwardly into the frustum-conical member, said shaft having a shoulder thereon near the lower end thereof, a pair of bearings for rotatably supporting the shaft, one of said bearings engaging the shaft near the lower end thereof and abutting said shoulder, a splined coupling splined to the top of the shaft and abutting the other bearing, the splined coupling supporting the tub, an open ended upwardly directed frustum-conical shaped portion located below the tub, and a conical-shaped flexible sealing member resiliently attached to said other bearing, the upper portion of said open ended frustumconical portion being connected to the flexible sealing member so that the flexible sealing member provides a Water-tight seal between the bearing engaging the splined coupling and the open ended frustum-conical member.

7. In a washing machine according to claim 10, wherein the means for supporting the tub includes a plurality of flexible rods diverging outwardly from a point adjacent the apex of the frustum conical member, and a gear casing supporting an electric motor, a driving mechanism for driving the shaft, said gear casing forming a support for the lower end of the shaft and being suspended upon said flexible rods so that the rods are flexed in response to vibrations of the tub.

8. In a washing machine, a tub mounted for oscillatory movement, said tub having integral with the bottom thereof an upwardly directed ramp forming a cavity on the under side of the tub, means for supporting the tub, said means including a shaft projecting upwardly into the cavity in the bottom of the tub, a member for securing the tub to the shaft, a plurality of bearings for supporting the shaft, one of the bearings being mounted near the top of the shaft and within the cavity of the tub, a frustum conical member surrounding the shaft and terminating in spaced relation from the bearing mounted near the top of the shaft, flexible means providing a water-tight seal extending from the upper bearing to the top of the frustum conical member providing a water-tight seal, said supporting means including a plurality of outwardly flaring rods, driving means for oscillating and spinning the shaft, a housing for the driving means, said housing supporting the lower bearing for the shaft, said housing being supported upon said flexible rods, said driving means oscillating and spinning the shaft and therewith oscillating and spinning the tub, said driving means including a rocker arm and a pinion, a clutch for connecting the pinion and the shaft so that as the driving means oscillates the rocker arm the pinion oscillates the shaft, and electromagnet for releasing the clutch, a belt driven by said drivingmeans for spinning the shaft, and idler, and an electromagnet for actuating the idler into engagement with the belt to it) tighten the same to cause the belt to rotate the shaft in one direction to thereby spin the tub.

9. A driving mechanism for use in a washing machine having a tub mounted for oscillatory and spinning movements, said driving mechanism including a motor, a shaft mounted for rotary and oscillatory movements for actuating the tub, means driven by an electric motor for oscillating the shaft, said means including a rocker arm having a longitudinally extending slot, a circular sleeve mounted in the slot, a main drive gear driven by the electric motor, a rotatable eccentric fixedly attached to the main drive gear and mounted in the circular sleeve in the slot for oscillating the rocker arm, the rocker arm terminating in arcuately disposed gear teeth, a pinion meshing with the gear teeth so as to be oscillated by the rocker arm, clutch means for connecting the pinion to the shaft, and an electromagnet for controlling the clutch means; means for spinning the shaft, said last mentioned means including a V-belt pulley connected to the armature shaft of the motor, a second V-belt pulley keyed to the first mentioned shaft, an idler, and an electromagnet for actuating the idler into engagement with the belt to tighten the same; and control means for energizing the first mentioned electromagnet to disengage the clutch means and for energizing the second electromagnet to cause the idler to tighten the belt to thereby drive the first mentioned shaft directly from the motor to spin the tub.

10. A driving mechanism according to claim 9, wherein the V-belt pulley keyed to the first mentioned shaft is provided with a brake surface, a brake member mounted upon the first mentioned shaft and resiliently biased against the brake surface of said V-belt pulley, said brake member being provided with a flange having apertures and normally rotating with the shaft, a pivotally mounted lever having a pawl adapted to be projected into one of the apertures in the flange of the brake member, and electromagnetic means for actuating the lever to project the pawl into an aperture thereby to arrest rotation of the brake member so as to apply a brake to the shaft.

11. A driving mechanism according to claim 9, wherein the V-belt pulley keyed to the first mentioned shaft is provided with a brake surface, a brake member mounted upon the first mentioned shaft and resiliently biased against the brake surface of the V-belt pulley, said brake member being provided with a flange encirciing the shaft, said flange having irregular shaped sides and being provided with apertures, the apertures being arranged on the portions of the flange closest to the center of rotation, a pivotally mounted lever having a pawl adapted to be projected into one of the apertures of the flange of the brake member, and electromagnetic means for actuating the lever to project the pawl into an aperture and arrest rotation of the brake member to thereby apply a brake to the shaft, the electromagnetic means upon being deenergized permitting the pawl to be projected out of the aperture, the pawl being actuated away from the aperture by the irregularities of the flange.

12. Supporting and driving means for supporting a tub mounted for rotary and oscillatory movements, said supporting and driving means including a vertically disposed shaft, a coupling for attaching the tub to the upper end of the shaft, a gear casing attached to the lower end of the shaft, the shaft supporting the tub in fixed spaced relation from the gear casing, a fixed support located in close proximity to the bottom of the tub and surrounding the shaft, and a plurality of flexible supports for supporting the gear casing the shaft and the tub, the upper ends of the flexible supports being secured to the fixed support, said flexible supports diverging outwardly and downwardly from the fixed support to the gear casing so that as the tub is vibrated in response to unbalanced conditions the shaft is caused to vibrate about a neutral plane, said neutral plane being located in the vicinity of the fixed support, the gear casing functioning as a ballast dampening the vibrations set up by the tub.

13. A device according to claim 12, wherein the tub is provided with a frustum conical centrally disposed outwardly directed recess in the bottom thereof, the upper end of the shaft projecting upwardly into the conical recess, the coupling for attaching the tub to the upper end of the shaft having a contour simulating the contour of the recess so that the coupling supports the bottom of the tub upon the upper end of the shaft.

14. A device according to claim 12, wherein the flexible supports consist of a plurality of flexible rods diverging downwardly and outwardly from the fixed support to the extremities of the gear casing.

15. Supporting and driving means for supporting a tub mounted for rotary and oscillatory movements, said supporting and driving means including a vertically disposed shaft, a tub mounted upon the upper end of the shaft, a gear casing attached to the lower end of the shaft, the shaft supporting the tub in fixed spaced relation from the gear casing, flexible supporting means for supporting the gear casing, the shaft and the tub, said flexible supporting means supporting the gear casing from a position near the neutral axis located below the tub and above the top of the gear casing, unbalanced load conditions in the tub causing the tub, the shaft and the gear casing to vibrate about a neutral axis, said neutral axis moving toward the tub as the unbalanced load condition increases and away from the tub as the unbalanced load condition decreases.

16. A supporting mechanism for supporting a tub upon the upper end of a shaft, the lower end of the shaft being mounted in a gear casing, the shaft driving the tub so that as an unbalanced condition develops in the tub the neutral axis is located between the tub and the gear casing, said supporting mechanism including a fixed support in the approximate vicinity of the neutral axis, and flexible means extending from the fixed support downwardly to the gear casing to support the gear casing.

17. A supporting mechanism for use in supporting a tub mounted for rotation by a shaft projecting up near the center of the tub and extending downwardly into a gear casing, including driving mechanism for driving the shaft and the tub, the neutral axis of the tub and the gear casing being located between the tub and the gear casing, said supporting mechanism including an annular member surrounding the shaft in the vicinity of the neutral axis, a fixed frustum conical support for supporting the annular member, and a plurality of downwardly and outwardly diverging flexible members extending from the annular member and connected thereto and to the gear casing for providing a support for the gear casing and the tub.

18. A supporting mechanism according to claim 17, wherein resilient members are positioned between the gear casing and the Wall of the fixed frustum conical support for dampening vibrations.

19. A supporting mechanism according to claim 17, wherein a conical resilient housing member interconnects the annular member to the shaft so as to provide a watertight seal.

20. A supporting mechanism according to claim 17 wherein a rubber snubber is mounted within the annular member surrounding the shaft in the vicinity of the neutral axis for limiting the movement of the shaft.

21. A supporting mechanism according to claim 17,

wherein the annular member consists of a pair of cylindrical portions joined by a frustum-conical portion, the smaller cylindrical portion housing the snubber used in limiting the movement of the shaft, the frustum-conical portion having fixedly attached thereto the diverging flexible members.

22. A supporting mechanism according to claim 17, wherein the gear casing is provided with a steel stamping cover having a peripheral flange secured to the lower ends of the flexible member.

23. A clothes washing machine unit including the combination of a casing, a water reservoir in the casing, a heater element in the water reservoir, means for supplying water to the reservoir, a tub mounted independently of the reservoir the side wall of which diverges outwardly from the bottom of the tub, means for oscillating the tub for washing clothes, means for spinning the tub for emptying the water from the tub, and thermostatic control means for controlling the heating elements in the reservoir so as to heat the water in the reservoir to the desired washing temperature while the tub is oscillated and spun, and means for automatically supplying water to the tub from the reservoir after the first washing operation so as to supply rinse Water to the-tub that is of the same temperature as the washing Water to thereby maintain the fibers of the clothes being washed at a constant expanded condition during the washing and rinsing cycles.

24. A clothes washing machine unit including the combination of a supporting structure, a water reservoir mounted upon the supporting structure, a heater element in the Water reservoir, means for supplying water to the reservoir, a tub mounted upon the supporting structure and independently of the reservoir, the side wall of said tub diverging outwardly from the bottom of the tub, means for oscillating the tub for washing the clothes, means for spinning the tub for emptying the water from the tub, and thermostatic control means for controlling the heater elements in the reservoir so as to heat the Water in the reservoir to the desired washing temperature while the tub is oscillated and spun, and means for automatically supplying water to the tub from the reservoir after the first washing operation so as to supply rinse Water to the tub that is of the same temperature as the washing water to thereby maintain the fibers of the clothes being washed at a constant expanded condition during the washing and the rinsing cycles.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Wooclson July 17,

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2995917 *Jun 11, 1958Aug 15, 1961American Motors CorpLaundry equipment
US6712082 *May 18, 2001Mar 30, 2004Johnsondiversey, Inc.Kitchenware washing apparatus
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Classifications
U.S. Classification68/23.3, 68/134, 68/23.5
International ClassificationD06F33/02, D06F23/04
Cooperative ClassificationD06F33/02, D06F23/04, D06F2204/04
European ClassificationD06F33/02, D06F23/04