US 2756570 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
July 3l, 1956 R. GALE 2,756,570
REFRIGERATION UNIT FOR COOLING AND DISFENSING BOTTLED BEVERAGES Filed May 21, 1952 2 Sheets-Sheet l 112 5@ 22 12 e2 M Z July 31, 1956 R, GALE 2,756,570
REFRIGERATION UNIT FOR COOLING AND DISPENSING BoTT Es LED BEVERAG Filed May 21, 1952 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 l5 13 @4 13 l /ll/l REFRIGERATION UNIT FOR COOLING AND DISPENSING BOTTLED BEVERAGES Ronald Gale, Elgin, Ill.
Application May 21, 1952, Serial No. 289,136
6 Claims. (Cl. 62-141) The present invention relates to a novel refrigerating unit for cooling bottled beverages and more particularly to a novel means and manner of arranging and mounting the bottles in the cooling unit for most effectively cooling such beverages.
Among the objects of the present invention is the provision of a novel refrigerating unit in which the refrigerant coils of an evaporator unit are formed of extruded metal sections longitudinally cored to provide spaced passages for the entry and return of the refrigerant through each coil and in series through a plurality of such coils.
The present invention further comprehends the provision of a novel cooling or evaporating unit formed of longitudinally extending cooling coils so constructed and arranged in spaced relation for receiving the bottled beverages and in which the individual bottles being cooled king passage for the refrigerant and with longitudinally extending and outwardly projecting cooling fins, said secnited States Patent O tions being spaced apart an amount such that the neck of each bottle projects therethrough and with the bottles suspended between adjacent sections by the bead or collar on the bottle directly beneath the sealing cap.
ln the disclosed embodiment, the ends of these extruded sections stop short of the end walls of the cabinet to permit the bottles to be readily and easily inserted in upright position between the adjacent sections at one end thereof for supplying to or replenishing the stock of bottles in the cooling compartment of the cabinet, and permitting the cooled bottles to be readily and easily removed or dispensed at the other end of the cooling compartment upon opening the lid.
A further important object of the present invention is to provide a novel cooling or refrigerating unit for a cabinet for cooling and dispensing bottled beverages, the novel unit requiring no blower or air circulating means for eifectively cooling the compartment or space receiving the bottles and by eliminating such blower or air circulating means and associated parts greatly augments the space available for pre-cooling.
The present invention is further provided with novel means for preventing the surreptitious removal of the caps of the bottles and withdrawal of the contents while the bottles are mounted between the cooling coils. Such means comprises spaced overhanging and inturned flanges on the adjacent coils which partially and closely overlie the top of the caps whereby to prevent the lifting and removal of the caps by an opener or other tool, but permitting the operator or attendant to move the bottles longitudinally.
Another important feature of the present invention is the novel arrangement of the cooling coils in a depressed position in a cabinet such that the lid of the cabinet may Yrice be retained open for extended periods of time without any appreciable loss in eiciency.
Further objects are to provide a construction of maximum simplicity, eiciency, economy and ease of assembly and operation, and such further objects, advantages and capabilities as will later more fully appear and are inherently possessed thereby.
ln the drawings:
Figure 1 is a view in perspective of a beverage dispensing cabinet equipped with the novel refrigeration unit, the service door for supplying bottles to the unit and the pre-cooling space of the cabinet and the lid for removal of the cooled bottles being shown in open position.
Fig. 2 is a fragmentary View in perspective showing the arrangement of the upper cooling compartment of the cabinet with the refrigeration unit removed, the cornpartment for the motor-compressor and condenser unit, and the compartment or space for pre-cooling bottles of beverage.
Fig. 3 is a view in vertical cross section through the closed cabinet and lshowing the bottles in the bending channels, the view being taken in a plane represented by the line 3-3 of Fig. l.
Fig. 4 is an enlarged, fragmentary view in perspective of the coils'of the evaporator unit disassembled from the cabinet and showing the ends thereof opposite to those shown in Fig. 3.
Fig. 5 is a view in vertical cross section through one of the coils of Fig. 4.
Referring more particularly to the disclosure in the drawings and to the novel embodiment therein selected to illustrate the present invention, the novel refrigerating unit for cooling bottles orreceptacles 10 containing various flavors or makes ofbeverages, consists of a plurality of the cooling coils 11 collectively providing an evaporator unit mounted in spaced parallel relation in a suitable cabinet 12.
l The bottles or containers are arranged and held in upright relation between adjacent coils in a manner to permit exposure of the caps of, these bottles when the lid or cover of the cabinet is opened for access to and removal of a bottle of a selected beverage. As disclosed in Figs. l, 3 and 4, the coils are spaced apart an amount suicient to provide vending channels 13 therebetween adapted to receive the upper portion of the bottles 10 therebetween and suspend these bottles as shown in Fig. 3, the bottles being inserted into these vending channels through a service opening14 adjacent one end 15 of the coils with this opening adapted to be closed by an end door 16 or closure, and with the cooled bottles removed at the other end 17 of the coils which, like'the end 15, stop short of the end wall 18. These coils are held rigid by connection to and suspended from the depending anged ends 19 of suitably spaced cross braces 20, the extreme ends of the cross braces being secured by brackets or other attaching means 21 to the interior of the front and rear walls 22 of the cabinet 12.
The bottles 1@ in cooling lposition are suspended by the bead or shoulder 23 on the neck of the bottle directly beneath the caps A with the lower edge of the bead or shoulder seating upon the adjacent and oppositely disposed and longitudinally extending edges or horizontal ledges of the longitudinally extending flanges 24 at the top of each cooling coil 11 of the evaporator unit. The bottles are slidable in the vending channels 13, with the cross braces 2t) being notched at 25 between the depending flanged ends 19 to permit the bottles to be slid therethrough and pushed along in suspended position between adjacent cooling coils 11 as other bottles at the discharge end of the vending channels are dispensed. Any number of these vending channels may be provided depending upon the size and capacity of the cabinet em- 3 -ployed and the number of flavors or brands of beverage to be dispensed, with those of the same flavor preferably arranged in the same channel to facilitate access thereto and ready removal of a bottle'offa desired flavor or brand.
The refrigerating system employed may be of any suitable type including a motor-compressor and condensor unit shown generally at 26 mounted in a compartment 27 in the base of and insulated from the remainder of the cabinet l2 for circulating a suitable refrigerant through the system. rlhe refrigerant which is compressed in the compressor unit and condensed to extract its heat in the condensor, passes through a -liquefying restrictor, such as an expansion valve 28, before it is supplied to the heat absorbing portion of the refrigeration system. Such heat absorbing portion comprises the cooling coils El of the evaporator unit disposed in upper portion of the cabinet.
These cooling coils lll of the evaporator unit are connected in the manner shown in Figs. 3 and 4, with the refrigerant entering the lower passageway 29 (Fig. 5) of an end coil at 3l, passing through this lower passageway and then through a U-shaped conduit 32 at the other end of this coil connecting this lower passageway 29 to the upper passageway 33 of the same coil, then through this upper passageway and out through an inclined connecting conduit 3ft to the lower passageway 29 of an adjoining Coil l1, and then through the remaining coils in series or sequence. Upon leaving the last coil in the series the refrigerant enters the suction line 35 and is returned to the motor-compressor and condensor unit 26 where the absorbed heat is removed and the refrigerant compressed. This refrigeration system is operated in a closed and continuous cycle to absorb the heat in the upper cooling compartment 36 of the cabinet 12 whereby to lower the temperature of the bottled beverages and maintain them at a desired low.
As clearly disclosed in Figs, 3 to 5 inclusive, each coil is cored to provide the lower and upper passageways 29 and 33, and is also provided with longitudinally extending ns 37 and the top flanges 24 for increasing the heat absorbing capacity of the evaporator or cooling coils and with the flanges 24 providing a supporting means for carrying the bottles in suspended position.
Although the novel refrigeration unit may be employed in any suitable cabinet and with or without vending ap paratus, the cabinet l2 is preferably provided with a large pre-cooling compartment 38 in the base thereof for receiving and pre-cooling bottles prior to their being received in the vending channels 13. The bottles llt) from the pre-cooling compartment 38 (Figs. l and 2) may be inserted into the vending channels t3 to replenish the supf ply of bottles thereat, or bottles may be directly inserted into the vending channels without prior cooling. The bottles entering the vending channels 13 are inserted from adjacent the ends l of the cooling coils 11, these ends being spaced inwardly of the end wall 39 containing the service opening lid by the series connecting conduits 34 which provide sufficient space to permit the operator or vendor to quickly insert and align the necks of the bottles lt) with the adjacent end of the evaporator coils l1 and slide the bottles singly into the position shown in Fig. 3.
To prevent the surreptitious opening of a cap A and the withdrawal of the contents of the bottle by a straw or the like without actually removing the bottle as when the cooler is unattended, the coils lll are provided with longitudinally extending upstanding and oppositely projecting flanges du that overlap or overhang the caps A an amount sufficient to prevent the removal of a cap by an opener or other tool. The space between the adjacent inturned ends of these flanges 40 is such as to permit the operator or attendant to insert his finger therebetween and move the bottles longitudinally of the coils from the point of entry to the discharge or dispensing end thereof, and to expose the printing on the cap to disclose the contents of the bottles.
Access to the bottles lll to be dispensed may be had by raising a cover or lid 41 and sliding out a bottle from between the end 17 of adjacent coils 11 (Fig. 4), space being provided therefor by the U-shaped conduits 32 and with the adjacent end i7 of the coils stopping short of the adjacent end wall 1S of the cabinet. Adding bottles to the other end of the vending channels 13 moves the bottles within these channels along the top ilanges 24 toward the left end of the cabinet as viewed in Figs. l and 2.
The individual coils 11 connected in series to form thc evaporator or heat absorbing means are preferably constructed of extruded aluminum with the lower and upper passageways 29 and 33 for carrying the refrigerant cored or extending longitudinally through the coils, and with these passageways of the individual and adjoining coils connected in series for most effectively cooling the cabinet and bottles of beverage inserted therein. By providing these coils with outwardly projecting and longitudinally extending fins or flanges 37, the top ones 24 of which are adapted to support and suspend the bottles ll() in the manner shown in Fig. l, and the flanges 40 which prevent removal of the caps A when located between the coils, quick and effective absorption of the heat is assured. The generated cool air circulates over the bottles in the cabinet 36, the walls of which are heavily insulated at 42, and pre-cools the bottles in the pre-cooling compartment 38 without the necessity of any fan or blower whereby all available space in the cabinet is effectively employed. This assures maximum capacity for beverages and maximum storage space.
By arranging the cooling or refrigeration unit a substantial distance below the upper end of the cooler cabinet 12, the lid 41 thereof may be retained open for extended periods of time without appreciable loss in efficiency of the cooling unit.
Having thus disclosed the invention, I claim:
l. In a beverage cooling and dispensing cabinet, a refrigeration unit mounted in the cabinet for cooling and supporting bottled beverages of the type in which the bottle is provided with a bead on the neck thereof, said unit comprising laterally spaced and longitudinally extending, depending coils having vertically spaced passages therethrough for the 'flow of a refrigerant and laterally projecting fins about each passage, and longitudinally extending, opposed flanges on the adjacent coils providing horizontally disposed shoulders adjacent the upper end of the coils and spaced apart to loosely receive therebetween the neck of aligned bottles and with the bead on the neck only of each bottle resting on these shoulders whereby to support the bottles between the adjacent coils, the fins of adjacent coils projecting into close proximity to the neck and sides of each bottle depending therebetween to effect rapid cooling of the bottles.
2. In a beverage cooling and dispensing cabinet, a refrigeration unit mounted in the cabinet for cooling and supporting bottled beverages in which the bottle is provided with an annular shoulder on the neck thereof, said unit including horizontally arranged cooling coils of extruded aluminum sections having vertically spaced and longitudinally extending passages for the flow of refrigerant therethrough and radially projecting fins about each passage, these sections being arranged in laterally spaced and aligned relation for receiving the upper ends of the bottles therebetween and depending for a substantial portion of the length of these bottles for quick and effective cooling, and longitudinally extending ilanges at the upper edge of adjacent sections spaced apart somewhat less than the maximum diameter of the shoulder on the neck whereby the bottles inserted between the adjacent sections are suspended therefrom by their annular shoulder.
3. In a refrigeration system for cabinets for cooling bottled beverages having a removable cap, a cooling unit comprising multiple longitudinally extending extruded metal sections cored to provide longitudinal passages for `the refrigerant and said sections spaced apart for receiving the bottles therebetween, and opstanding anges on said sections overhanging the upper end of the bottles to prevent surreptitious opening of the bottles, said anges being spaced apart an amount suflicient to expose a portion only of the caps of the bottles and permit the entry between said flanges of the fingers of an attendant to move the bottles longitudinally between adjacent sections, but insuflcient to remove the bottles or their caps.
4. In a refrigerating unit adapted to be mounted in a cabinet for cooling and dispensing bottled beverages provided with a removable cap for access to the contents, a plurality of longitudinally extending cooling members each provided with vertically spaced passages therethrough for the transmission of a refrigerant, longitudinally extending cooling ns on said members and longitudinally extending shoulders thereon spaced apart to conformably receive and support thereon the neck of each bottle and thereby suspend each bottle of a row of bottles from its neck, the cooling tins of spaced cooling members being disposed at the opposite sides of the row of bottles and extended for a substantial distance longitudinally of and in close proximity to the bottles to eifect rapid cooling thereof, and longitudinally extending spaced flanges projecting upwardly from the shoulders and adapted to' partially overlie the removable caps of the bottles to prevent surreptitious removal of the caps and access to the contents of the bottles.
5. In a refrigerating unit adapted to be mounted in a cabinet for cooling and dispensing bottled beverages having an annular bead on the neck of the bottle and a closure for the open end of the bottle, a plurality of longitudinally extending cooling members depending into the space at the opposite sides of a row of bottles and each member provided with passages therethrough for the transmission of a refrigerant, oppositely projecting longitudinally extending shoulders on each member with the shoulders of adjacent members spaced apart to conformably receive and support thereon the bead on the neck of each bottle and thereby retain each bottle suspended between adjacent cooling members, and spaced flanges on said shoulders projecting thereabove to partially overlie the closure on the bottles to permit the attendant to engage and move the bottles but prevent surreptitious opening of the closure of each bottle and removal of the contents thereof.
6. In a refrigeration system for a cabinet for cooling bottled beverages having a top dispensing opening and a closure for said opening, a cooling unit comprising multiple longitudinally extending extruded metal sections spaced apart to receive and retain a row of said bottles suspended therebetween with the bottles disposed in close proximity to adjacent sections to be cooled thereby, each section being provided with an upper and a lower longitudinal passage with the lower passage arranged above the major portion of the contents of the bottles and a connection therebetween at one end for receiving and directing the refrigerant through one passage and then returning it through the other, means at the other end of said sections for connecting adjacent sections in series, and means for mounting said sections in the cabinet a substantial distance below the opening whereby opening or retaining open the closure for extended periods does not substantially affect the etliciency of the refrigeration system.
References Cited in the fileof this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS