US 2782425 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Feb. 26, 1957 G. A. SCHROETER 2,732,425v
FLUID CIRCULATING APPARATUS Filed April 21, 1954 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 ATTO R N EY United States Patent This invention relates to portable liquid circulating apparatus for producing gentle massaging effects in therapeutic baths and constitutes an improvement of the apparatus disclosed in my United States Patent No. 2,559,678, granted July 10, 1951.
Liquid circulating apparatus and particularly portable apparatus as shown and described in my aforementioned patent for producing circulating currents and turbulence within a liquid bath has been found particularly useful for securing certain desirable massaging effects on a patient submerged in the bath. While portable equipment of this character eliminates the complicated and expensive structures that were required in the case of fixed installations, such portable devices must be relatively light in weight, easily maneuverable, and readily adjustable so that they may be used with equal facility in diiierent types of baths. This invention attains these ends through the provision of a new and improved structure characterized by its simplicity, lightness of weight and versatility. By reason of the design and arrangement of components, it provides a sturdy, dependable device that is quiet in operation and can be fabricated at relatively low cost.
An object of the invention resides in the provision of simple and effective means for controlling both the direction and magnitude of the circulating currents and turbulence to meet specific requirements. These controls are arranged so that they are easily accessible to the patient and adjustable by him while actually submerged and without any danger of electrical shock or other injury even though the device is in operation.
A further object of the invention is a new and improved portable water circulating apparatus.
The above and other objects and advantages of the invention will become more apparent from the following description and drawings forming part of this application.
In the drawings:
Fig. 1 is a perspective view of the invention shown in position to circulate fluid in a conventional bath as used in the home;
Fig. 2 is a cross-sectional view of the embodiment of the invention shown in Fig. 1;
Fig. 3 is a cross-sectional view along the line 3-3 of Fig. 2;
Fig. 4 is a cross-sectional view of Fig. 3 along the line 4-4 thereof;
Fig. 5 is a cross-sectional view of the circulating pump and air supply means illustrated in elevation in Fig. 2;
Fig. 6 is a bottom view of the pump of Fig. 5 with a partial section taken generally along the line 6-6 thereof; and
Fig. 7 is a cross-sectional view of Fig. 3 along the line 7-7 thereof to illustrate certain features of the invention which facilitate the operation thereof.
The invention broadly comprises a horizontally disposed housing or superstructure 10 containing the operating elements of the apparatus including the control ice switch 10 and a carrying handle 19 and a wheeled undercarriage 11 for adjustably supporting the housing and enable it to be readily transported from one location to another. More specifically, the carriage 11 includes a tripod 12 having three wheels or castors 13 and a vertically adjustable sleeve 14 that may be locked in position relative to the tripod by any suitable means such as the knob and a cooperating threaded screw generally denoted by the numeral 16. Within the sleeve 14, is an inner or telescoping shaft 15 which carries the housing 10 on its upper end. This shaft can be locked in position relative to the sleeve 14 by means of a locking screw 17 threadably engaging sleeve 14 and bearing against the shaft 15. In this way both the height of the housing 10, as well as its angular position relative to the tripod 12, can be easily adjusted.
In Figs. 1 and 2 it will be observed that the pump 18 is supported on the lower end of a shaft 18 which depends from the housing 10. In order to facilitate positioning of the pump within a bath without having to elevate the housing 10, a hinged connection 20 is provided between the housing 10 and shaft 15 (see Fig. 7) so that the housing can be rotated about a horizontal axis to elevate the pump to the level of the housing. This is accomplished by a pair of plates 21 and 22 hinged one to the other by a pin 20. The plate 21 is welded or otherwise secured to the top of shaft 15 while the plate 22 is welded directly to the frame members 23 and 24. When the housing 10 is in the lowered or solid line position or Fig. 7, it is centered over the shaft 15. In the raised position, however, portions of the housing 10 will lie on each side of the shaft 15 so that an approximate balance obtains to prevent the device from accidentally tipping when being moved into position in a bath. With this arrangement therefore the entire unit does not have to be lifted and through the design arrangement and balance of the components little effort is needed to hold the housing 10 in the tilted position.
The operative portion of the invention broadly designated as the housing or superstructure 10, includes a frame formed of two strips of angle iron or the like 23 and 24, a drive motor 29, the pump assembly 18, pump supporting and driving means 18 and an outer shell 19. Referring more specifically to Figs. 2 and 3, the angle iron strips are shaped to form an L-shaped structure with horizontal legs 25 and 26 and vertical legs 27 and 28, the latter providing the support for the motor 29. The horizontal frame sections 25' and 26 are tapered inwardly one of the other to provide a narrowed section for support of the pump assembly 18. Frame members 23 and 24 are secured one to the other by a pair of transverse plates 30 and 31 preferably welded in position. The open area between these plates is closed by a protective screen 32 also welded or otherwise secured to the frame sections 25 and 26. The downwardly depending legs 27 and 28 of the frame are also braced by a transverse plate 33 as shown more clearly in Fig. 2.
The motor 29 which is of conventional configuration and provided with a U-shaped mount 34, is bolted to the frame parts 27 and 28 with its shaft 35 extending in an upwardly direction. Shaft 35 carries a drive pulley 36 preferably having a V-shaped groove for accommodating a V-belt 37 which engages a second V-pulley 38 for driving the pump 18. In order to provide for adequate circulation of cooling air about the motor, the pulley 36 may be provided with at least two air impelling blades 39 for the intake and exhaust of air through screens 32 and 40, the latter being disposed below the motor 29 and supported by frame members 27 and 28.
The supporting and driving assembly for the pump 18 includes a pair of circular members 41 and 42 clamped to the free ends of the frame parts 25 and 26. The upper member 41 is provided with a hearing or journal 43 for rotatably supporting the pump drive shaft 44 which carries the pulley 38 on the upper end thereof and spaced from the journal 43 by a short collar 45. The lower clamping member 42 has an integral depending collar part 46 which rotatably supports the sleeve 47 surrounding shaft 44 by means of a flanged end part 48 on sleeve 47 which is retained within a cooperating recess in the clamping member 42. The sleeve 47 may be fixed against rotation by a suitable locking screw 49 shown in Fig. 2 and the two clamping members are secured to the frame by a pair of screws 50. The use of the clamping members 41 and 42 to support the pump 18, enables the shaft 44 to be moved relative to the frame for adjusting the tension on the V-belt 37.
The centrifugal pump 18, shown more clearly in Figs. and 6, is provided with a housing or shell 51 supported in a horizontal position on the lower end of the sleeve 47. The drive shaft 44 is suitably journalled in the pump housing 51 at 52 and carries the pump impeller 53. The underside of the pump is closed by a perforated plate 54 which forms the pump inlet and the liquid is discharged through the cylindrical outlet 55 formed integrally with the pump housing 51.
The rate of flow of liquid through the pump 18 is attained by means of an outlet valve of which the air inlet tube 56 forms a part. This is attained through the provision of a short vertically disposed housing part 57 joined to the outlet 55 and having a central opening 58 intersecting the outlet and adapted to slidably receive the lower end 56a of tube 56. With this arrangement movement of the tube 56 downwardly closes the outlet 55 while movement upwardly opens the outlet. In addition to the employment of the tube 56 as the flow control, it also functions as the means for aspirating air into the liquid discharged from outlet 55. For this purpose an opening 59 is provided in the wall of tube 56 within the housing part 57 and communicates with an angularly disposed passage 60 terminating in front of the outlet 55 and in a manner to intercept the liquid emerging from the outlet.
Control of the quantity of air aspirated through tube 56 is effected by a valve in the form of a cap 61 on the upper end thereof. This cap is retained in position by a screw 62 secured to the cap and engaging a short helically disposed slot 63. Rotation of the cap 61 in one direction raises it to expose air inlet openings 64 while rotation in the other direction lowers it to close the openings. In order to prevent displacement of the cap 61 by reason of vibration of the apparatus during operation, means in the form of a pair of friction shoes 65 slidably mounted in oppositely disposed openings in the tube 56 are provided, together with an intervening spring 66 which urges them outwardly. These shoes bear against the walls of the cap 61 with sufiicient force to hold it in any adjusted position.
With the structure described above, the entire assembly can be readily and easily positioned in any type of bath with the pump 18 submerged beneath the liquid level and the air tube 56 extending above the liquid. By loosening screw 49, the pump as a whole can be rotated to direct the circulating stream in any desired direct-ion. The quantity of water delivered by the pump is controlled by raising and lowering tube 56 while the air to be aspirated is adjusted by means of cap 61. While in the preferred embodiment of the invention, the speed of the pump 18 is controlled to deliver a maximum of approximately 60 gallons per minute, this delivery can be changed to meet other requirements. In addition, the motor 29 and electrical controls therefor are preferably insulated for at least 2500 volts to prevent any possible injury by reason of electrical shock and the shell 19 completely shields the motor 29, belt 37 and the pulleys 36 and 38.
While only one embodiment of the invention has been illustrated and described, it is apparent that changes,
modifications and alterations thereof may be made without departing from the true scope and spirit thereof.
What I claim is: i
1. Apparatus for circulating fluid in a bath comprising a horizontal frame, a motor depending from one end of said frame with the shaft thereof extending upwardly, a driven shaft including a surrounding sleeve depending from the other end of said frame, a pump on the lower end of said sleeve and coupled with the driven shaft, coupling means between the motor shaft and said driven shaft, and means including a tripod and castor for rotatab ly supporting said frame at a point between the motor and said driven shafts, said last-mentioned means being horizontally hinged to said frame for tilting the latter about said tripod and moving the pump and motor into a raised position, whereby said motor will be operatively engaged to said driven shaft when said frame is rotated or tilted.
2. Apparatus according to claim 1 wherein said pump includes an air intake and means for controlling both the flow of air and water.
3. Apparatus for circulating fluid in a bath comprising a horizontal frame, a motor depending from one end of said frame with the shaft thereof extending upwardly, a driven shaft including a surrounding sleeve depending from the other end of said frame, a centrifugal pump having an inlet and outlet mounted on the lower end of said sleeve and driven shaft, means coupling said motor to said driven shaft, a vertically disposed air inlet tube having a closed bottom end, a tubular mount for said tube extending upwardly from and intersecting said outlet, said tube being adjustably disposed within said mount to control the quantity of liquid issuing from said outlet, said tube including an opening in the wall thereof at a point within said mount, means including a passage communicating at one end with said opening and terminating at its other end at a point in front of said outlet and in the stream of liquid produced by said pump, adjustable valving means on the upper end of said tube for controlling the amount of air aspirated by the fiow of liquid past the end of said passage, means including a tripod and castors for rotatably supporting said frame at a point between the motor and said driven shaft, said last-mentioned means being hinged to said frame for tilting said frame about said tripod and moving the pump and motor into a raised position.
4. In an apparatus for circulating liquid in a bath, a horizontal frame, a circulating pump on one end of said frame adapted to be immersed in the liquid to be circulated, driving means on the other end of said frame, support means for rotatably supporting said frame at a point intermediate said pump and said driving means, said frame being mounted on said support means by a horizontal hinge to permit the frame to be horizontally tilted, and means for operatively coupling said driving means to said pump in continuous operative engagement therewith, whereby said driving means will be operatively engaged to said pump when said frame is rotated or tilted on said horizontal hinge.
5. In a liquid circulating apparatus, a pump having an inlet and a horizontally disposed outlet adapted to be immersed in a bath for producing circulating currents therein, an upright housing communicating with said outlet, a combination air inlet and liquid valve member seated in said housing for vertical adjustment having a tubular upper portion and a solid lower portion, said housing having a pair of openings therein opposite said outlet in spaced vertical relation to each other, an opening in the tubular portion of said member adapted to communicate with the upper opening in the housing when said outlet is in communication with the lower opening in the housing, and means for vertically adjusting said member in said housing for selectively valving said outlet between fully open and fully closed condition.
References Cited in the file of this patent 6 Ille Apr. 8, 1941 Rocke Feb. 10, 1942 Farrelly et a1. June 5, 1951 FOREIGN PATENTS Canada May 15, 1951