US 2740880 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 3, 1956 T. E; MEAD 2,740,880
TRAVEL CQOKER Filed Jan. 26, 1955 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 MUM g V 2N TOR.
T. E. MEAD TRAVEL COOKER April 3, 1956 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Jan. 26, 1955 I VENTOR. Mam
BY Z2411 ATTORN yaw United States Patent 2,740,880 TRAVEL COOKER Theodore E. Mead, Wilmette, Ill. Application January 26, 1955, Serial No. 484,118
3 Claims. (Cl. 219-37) This invention relates to a travel cooker, and more particularly to an electric cooker device which may be collapsed within small space and expanded, when desired, to form a cooking unit.
An object of the present invention is to provide an electric cooking unit which may be packed within small space while at the same time being convertible into a toasting, broiling, frying, etc., unit by making a minimum of changes. Another object is to provide a unit in which all the necessary parts of a cooking device, including an electric heating coil, a case therefor, an insulating support for the case, a connector cord, and cooking pans, are provided in a single, compact structure suitable for carrying in automobiles and other vehicles, while at the same time being readily set up into cooking units for making coffee, toast, frying, broiling, etc. Other specific objects and advantages will appear as the specification proceeds.
The invention is shown, in an illustrative embodiment, by the accompanying drawings, in which- Figure l is a perspective view of the cooking unit in collapsed or compact form for shipping; Fig.- 2, an exploded perspective view showing the various parts in spaced-apart relation; Fig. 3, a perspective view showing the unit set up in position for broiling, toasting, etc.; and Fig. 4, a perspective view of the unit set up for frying, boiling, or other forms of cooking.
In the illustration given, designates a base which has a U-shaped general form and which is provided at its top with inwardly-extending support straps 11. The straps 11 are preferably provided at their inner ends with upwardly-extending flanges 12. The bottom portion of the U-shaped member 10 may be equipped with insulation steps or supports 13. The side walls 14 of the U- shaped member preferably have their edges turned inwardly, as indicated at 15, leaving at the bottom of the base an open area for receiving a pan 16 equipped with a handle 17.
Above the U-shaped member 10 and carried by the inwardly-extending straps 11 is a resistance coil housing 18 having supported therein a resistance coil 19 exposed on the underside of the housing 18. Terminals for the coil are connected with outwardly-extending pins 20 adapted to be received within a socket 21 connected to an electric cord 22 and ending with a plug-in connection 23. Secured to the top of the housing 18 is an insulation block 24 having a flat top surface 25' adapted, when the unit is inverted, as illustrated in Fig. 4, to rest upon a floor or table so as to provide a support for the coil housing in the inverted position shown, with the coil 19 now being uppermost and exposed for heating a container there-above. In the specific illustration given, the insulation block 24 is formed of wood, Bakelite, or other material, and screws extend through the housing 18 and through insulating sleeves 26 into threaded recesses in the insulation block 24.
A pan 16 is conveniently supported in the lower portion of the U-shaped member 10 to support toast, cheese on toast, or food to be broiled below the coil 19. A second larger pan 27, which may also be equipped with a handle such as handle 17, may be supported upon the inverted unit 18, as illustrated in Fig. 4, to carry food which is to be cooked. The pan 27 also is effective in providing a closure for the case when the other parts are inserted within the U-shaped member 10, as illustrated in Figs. 1 and 2.
Operation In the operation of the structure, the unit may be packed within small compass in the manner illustrated in Figs. 1 and 2. The pan 16 is inserted in the lower portion of the member 10 and the housing 18 is also inserted through the end openings of the U-shaped member to the position illustrated, with the insulation block 24 extending there-above and providing a core about which the cord 22 is wound and held in a compact arrangement during shipment. Finally, the pan 27 is extended downwardly over the assembled parts to hold them in firm position within the composite structure.
When it is desired to set up the heating units, the case or pan member 27 is removed, and the pan 16 and housing 18 moved laterally through the side opening of the U-shaped member 10 to free them from the member. The unit 18 is then placed upon the inwardly-extending straps 11 so that it is supported in the position shown in Fig. 3 with the coil 19 extending downwardly. In this position, food may be cooked within the bottom portion of the structure 10 or within the pan 16 which may be inserted into the position shown in Fig. 3.
For cooking in the vessel 27 or in another vessel, the housing 18 may be lifted from the position shown in Fig. 3 and turned to the position shown in Fig. 4. In this operation, the block 24 which preferably has downwardly and inwardly-inclined sides, provides a convenient cold handle for the moving of the heater unit 18.
By way of example, a traveler staying in a motel and wishing to prepare his morning breakfast, may disassemble the unit as above described and place first the unit in the position shown in Fig. 4. Coifee may then be cooked in a coffee-pot or other vessel resting upon the exposed upper portion of the coil 19. After the coifee is cooked, the unit may be lifted and moved to the position shown in Fig. 3 and toast, etc. may be made in the lower portion of the unit or in pan 16. Cheese on toast may also be exposed for a toasting operation, and many different types of foods may be prepared. After the meal is thus prepared, the unit may be disassembled and arranged in the compact form illustrated in Figs. 1 and 2 for further travel.
It will be understood that many changes may be made in the structure as described above. In other words, instead of using a one-heat element as described, a two-heat element may be used, and three prongs may be employed, one pair for high heat and the other for low or simmering heat.
While, in the foregoing specification, I have set forth a specific structure in considerable detail for the purpose of illustrating an embodiment of the invention, it will be understood that such details of structure may be varied widely by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of my invention.
1. In combination, a U-shaped base member having a fiat bottom wall and deep integral side walls extending upwardly and terminating in inwardly-turned supporting straps adapted to receive thereon a heating unit housing, a heating unit housing adapted to be carried by said straps and provided on its underside with an electric resistance coil exposed for directing heat toward the botawasso tomwall of said base, an insulation block secured to the top of said housing and having a flattop adapted to provide a base support for said housing when said housing is inverted, a pan adapted to be supported upon the bottom wall of said base and to be stored thereon in inverted position to provide a base for the heating unit housing when the same is stored Within the base, and a deep pan telescopically received by said U-shaped' base and extending downwardly over said heating unit housing to lock the same within said base.
2. The structure of claim 1, in which said inwardlyextending straps are provided at their inner ends with upwardly-extending flanges.
3. In combination, a U-shaped base having a fiat bottom wall and deep side walls extending upwardly there-- from, said side walls having inwardly-turned edges ata spaced distance above said bottom wall to provide enlarged end openings throughlwhich a pan may bereceivedon the bottom wall. of said base,,said side walls terminating in inwardly-extending straps, a heating unit housingladapted to be carried by said straps andlprovided on its underside withlan electric resistance coil exposed for. directing heat toward the bottom of .said base,.
an insulation block secured to the top of saidhousing and having a fiat top adapted to provide a base support for said housing when said housing is inverted, said insulation block being smaller than the top of said housing to provide a winding area there-above for receiving an electric cord, said housing having also prong connections extending laterally therefrom at a spaced distance below the top of said housing, a pan adapted to be received through the openings at the bottom of the base and to be stored in inverted position thereon, said housing being also stored between said side walls and upon said pan, and a deep-sided pan telescopically engaging the side walls of said base and enclosing the upper portion of said housing above said prongs'and releasably confining said housing in stored relation within said base.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,857,781 Hanyzer et a1. May 10, 1932 2,135,318 Barkinskyet' a1. Nov. 1, 1938 2,183,866 Hutchens'et a] Dec. 19, 1939 2,188,757 Moon Ian. 30 1940 2,510,116 Kaplan' June 6, 1950 2,518,015 Jefirey Aug. 8, 1950