US 2804629 A
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W. RING Sept. 3, 1957 BATHTUB m we mm m0 M A U H W ""f ATTORNEYS Sept. 3, 1957 w. RING BATHTUB Filed July 12, 1954 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 ATTORNEYS INVENTOR. WILLIAM RI NG Sept. 3, 1957 w, R|NG 2,804,629
BATHTUB Filed July 12, 1954 5 Sheets-Sheet s IIIII/ I III l I I f 3 INVENTOR. 3 8 WILLIAM RING ATTORNEYS 18%,629 Patented S n 3, 1957 forced to remain in the tub during usual relatively slow draining of the water from the tub.
While some of the more salient features, characteristics 2,804,629 and advantages of the instant invention have been above pointed out, others will become apparent from the fol- BATHTUB lowing disclosures, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which- Wllham Ring Cmcagg Figure 1 is a fragmentary side elevational view of a Application July 12, 1954, erial No. 442,588 bathtub structure embodying principles of the instant in vention, showing the same with the side door of the tub 8 Claims. ((14-173) in open Position;
Figure 2 is a view similar in character to Fig. 1, but showing the side door in closed position;
Figure 3 is a fragmentary plan view of the means for This invention relates to improvements in a bathtub, holding the door water tight, with the upper portion and more particularly to a bathtub so constructed as to eliminate the danger of injury in entering or leaving the tub, the invention being highly desirable for use in hospitals, sanitariums, institutions, as well as in hotels, clubs, and many and various locations, as will be apparent to one skilled in the art.
In the past, many and various types of bathtubs have been constructed, but insofar as I am aware not any of these bathtubs were intended to provide the appearance of the customary bathtub utilized in homes and other 10- cations and intended to be used in the same manner as the commonly known bathtub, and yet enable a physically incapacitated person to enter and leave the tub, or be assisted into and out of the tub without danger of injury. When a person sufiering from temporary or permanent physical disability endeavors to step over the side of a bathtub, lower himself into it, ultimately arise from a sitting position in the tub, and again step over the side to leave the tub, there is grave danger of severe injury from slipping or some other form of accident. The same is true when an invalid must be lifted into and out of the bathtub by a nurse or other attendant.
With the foregoing in mind, it is an important object of the instant invention to provide a bathtub which may be entered through the side.
Another object of the invention is the provision of a bathtub structure, wherein the bottom of the tub is substantially at chair seat height from the floor, arrangements being made to enter the tub through the side thereof, whereby the bather need merely sit on the bottom of the tub and swing himself into position in the tub.
A further object of the invention is the provision of a bathtub having an entry way through the side of the tub which may readily be opened, and sealed water tight when closed.
Also a feature of the invention resides in the provision of a bathtub structure in which the bottom of the tub is elevated materially from the floor, and the tub is provided with a drop door in the side wall which, when in open position, permits the bather to merely seat himself on the bottom of the tub and swing into position in the tub.
Another feature of the invention resides in the provision of a bathtub mounted on a tank to be elevated above floor level, the bathtub permitting entry and exit through the side wall thereof, and the tank receiving drainage from the bathtub so that the bather need neither enter nor leave the tub with water therein.
Still a further feature of the invention resides in the provision of an elevated bathtub having an opening in the side thereof, which opening is moved to both open and closed position automatically by means controlled from inside the tub.
It is also an object of this invention to provide an elevated bathtub with automatic means for opening and closin a side door in the tub, and which tub is equipped with extra quick drain means, so that the bather is not of the door shown in plan section;
Figure 4 is a fragmentary enlarged vertical sectional view through the bathtub door and adjacent parts, taken substantially as indicated by the line iV-IV of Fig. 2, looking in the direction of the arrows;
Figure 5 is a top plan view of the bathtub structure, showing the adjacent wall in section, and taken substantially as indicated by the line VV of Fig. 1;
Figure 6 is also a plan sectional view, taken on a lower plane just beneath the bathtub itself, as indicated by the line Vl-Vl of Fig. 1;
Figure 7 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view through the under structure, and taken substantially as indicated by the line VIIVlI of Fig. 6;
Figure 8 is a vertical sectional view through the tub alone taken substantially as indicated by the staggered section line VIIIVIII of Fig. 5;
Figure 9 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view through the entire structure, taken substantially as indicated by line IXIX of Fig. 6, and illustrating the operation of certain parts in dotted lines; and
Figure 10 is an elevational detail view of the door elevating means.
As shown on the drawings:
In the illustrated embodiment of the instant invention, there is shown a tank-like base 1 which may'well be seated upon a floor 2. This base tank is provided with a clean out door 3 in the side Wall thereof. As seen best in Fig. 9 the upper edge of the base tank may be inwardly flanged as indicated at 4 to provide a seat thereon for a bathtub 5.
The bathtub 5 may be of any desirable construction, such as enameled cast iron, stainless steel, or any other satisfactory material. The bathtub is made with an opening 6 in the front side wall thereof. As seen best in Figs. 1 and 3, in the exterior marginal portion adjacent the opening 6, there is an outstanding bead 7 following the contour of the opening, but spaced slightly therefrom. This bead is to effect a water tight seal with a drop door 8 movable in a vertical direction out of the tank 1 over the opening 6 and vice versa. As seen best in Figs. 4 and 5, the door 8 is lined marginally on the inner side thereof with a strip 9 of sealing material such as rubber or the equivalent. On the external side of the door at each end thereof there is a bearing strip 1010.
When the door is moved to elevated position over the side opening 6 in the tub, the door is forced sidewise into tight engagement with the margin of the tub around the opening, so that the sealing strip 9 is compressed over the head '7 as seen in Fig. 3, thus making a water tight closure. Means for locking the door in water tight position are disposed on each side of the door, and supported by a pair of outstanding flanges 1111 on the bathtub 5. Each of the locking means includes a shaft 12 extending through the respective flange 11, and on the outside end of the shaft is a hand lever 13. On the inner end of the shaft is an eccentrically mounted cam 14 so disposed as to exert inward pressure upon the door when the handle is raised to the position seen in Figs. 2 and 4, and release the pressure on the door, when the handle is moved to downward position as seen in Fig. 1.
Automatic means are provided for elevating the door 8 over the opening 6 in the side wall of the bathtub. These means are best seen in Figs. 5, 6, 7, 9 and 10. When the tub structure is mounted adjacent a wall '15, it may be desirable to install at least a part of the-elevating mechanism behind that wall for purposes of appearance, as illustrated in Figs. and 9. In the illustrated instance hydraulic pressure means are disclosed for elevating the door 8.
These hydraulic pressure means include a cylinder 16 in which a piston 17 operates, the piston being carried on the lower end of a piston rod 18. As seen in Fig. 9, this piston rod is provided with a notch 19 in the side thereof. At the upper end thereof the piston rod carries a cross arm 20 centrally mounted on the piston rod. 'An adjustable connector 21 depends from each end of the cross arm 20 and to each connector the end of a cable 22 is attached. Each cable extends downwardly under a pulley 23 carried on a shaft 24 journaled in suitable brackets mounted to the wall 15. The cables then pass through suitable openings in both the wall and the tank base 1, upwardly inside the tank and over a pulley 25 on a shaft 26 journaled in suitable bearings 2727 on a carrier plate 28. Upon passing over its pulley 25, each cable drops down and is connected to a lower portion of the door 8 as indicated at 29. It is preferable to use a pair of cables 2222, as above described, in order to maintain balanced action of the door.
The carrier plate 28 by means of a suitablesaddle bracket 30 depending therefrom supports a relatively large roller 31 which bears lightly against the inside of the door 8 so as to maintain the door in alignment between a pair of inwardly extending flanges 3232 on the tank base 1 which in effect form a track for the slidable movement of the door.
Hydraulic fluid, which may well be water, is admitted,
under pressure to the bottom of the cylinder 16 by way of a pipeline 33, and a 'control valve 34 is mounted in this pipeline. As seen clearly in Fig. 5, a handle 35 is mounted on the valve 3'4, and this handle projects through a-suitable slot or opening in the wall 15 so as to be accessible from inside the bathtub. It is a simple expedient, therefore, for the occupant of the bathtub to mov e the handle 35 to valve opening position as seen in Fig. 1; and then when the door has elevated, return the valve handle to closed position as seen ,inFigs. 2 and 5. The admission of the liquid under pressure to the cy1inder,16 raises the piston 17 together with the piston rod .18 to the dotted line position seen in Fig. 9, thus pulling on the cables 2222 and elevating the door 8. Now, 'still with reference to Fig. 9, it will be seen that when the piston rod 18 reaches elevated position it is automatically locked in that position by means of a,forked retaining member 36 urged toward the piston'rod by a spring 37. This forked retainingmernber engages in the aforesaid notch 19 in the piston rod and prevents .the descent of the piston. A release handle .38 on the bifurcated retainer 36 extendsthrough. the wall '15 as seen clearly in Figs. ,5 and 9, so as to be accessible from inside the bathtub. Pulling on the handle 38 disengages the retainer 36 from the notch 19,; and allows the piston to fall. When .the piston has been elevated by liquid pressure, and locked in its elevated position, the liquid leaks out of the cylinder through a drain pipe 39 which extends through the wall '15 anddischarges into the tank base 1, as seen best in Fig. '9 This drain p ipe is so small in diameter thatwhat liquid escapes through .it during the raising of p the piston does .not interfere with the 'raising operation, but the'drainingof the liquid out of the cylinder after the piston has been raised, permits a free dropping of thepiston when it is desired to drop the door 8.
Now with reference more particularly to Figs. 5 and 8, it will be seen that the bathtub 5 is provided with an oversize drain opening which may be plugged with an oversize plug 40. This permits a very rapid discharge of water from the tub down into the tank base 1. There is also an overflow partition 41 in the corner of the tub, provided with a drain opening 42 in the bottom and an inlet or overflow opening 43 near the top. The upper portion of the overflow arrangement is in the form of a socket as indicated at 44 to provide an air exit, or function as a soap holder or hand hold.
While the tank base 1 is not as long as the bathtub proper as seen in Fig. 1, it is somewhat wider than the bathtub and has considerably greater capacity as is evident from the showing in Fig. 9. In fact, the base tank 1 will hold the entire contents of the bathtub to a point not reaching the entrance opening for the cables 2222 and obviously not reaching the outlet pipe 39 from the pressure cylinder16. The base tank 1 is provided near its bottom with a valved outlet 45 which may extend to any suitable sewage or equivalent connection.
One other feature of the instant invention remains to be described, namely, the mounting of the assembly carried .on the carrier bar 28. As seen best in Figs. 6 and 7, end brackets 46-46 are provided on the inside walls of-the base tank 1. Attached to each end of the carrier bar 28 is a pair'of plates 4747 to form a slot, and the slot so formed embraces the projecting flange of the adjacent bracket 46. A transverse stop member 48 extendst-hroughthe flange of each bracket near the bottom thereof to form a base for the adjacent elements 47. In
this manner, the carrier bar 28 together with the shaft 26, the pulleys -25-25 thereon, the saddle bracket 30, and the large wheel 31, may be merely dropped into position over the projecting flanges of the end brackets, when the structure is assembled. Should anything go wrong, it is a simple expedient to lift this entire assembly out of position for repair services, the tub being pivotal on hinge 49.
In operation, the instant invention is extremely simple and effective. With the door of the tub dropped as shown in Fig. 1, it is a simple expedient for an ambulatory person to seat himself on the bottom of the tub, which is substantially chair seat height and swing himself into position inside the tub. If the person is not ambulatory, he can be very readily transferred from the seat of a wheel chair into the tub. A ll danger of slipping, and all danger of accidents resulting from lifting a person into and out of the tub are eliminated.
Once in the hub, the valve handle 35 is thrown to the position seen in Fig. l, and the door elevates to the position seen in Fig. 2 by virtue of the piston 17 operating in the hydraulic cylinder 16. When the door is raised the handle 35 is moved to the position seen in Fig. 2, and the handles '1313 are moved to elevated position to clamp the door water tight over the tub opening. The tub may then be filled to the desired level and temperature in a well known manner. After the bathing operation has been completed, it is a simple expedient to pull the oversize drain plug 41 and the water from the tub is immediately discharged into the base tank 1. The handles 13 may then be lowered to release the door, and the handle 38 pulled inwardly against the action of the spring 37 to release the piston rod 18', whereupon the door quickly descends by gravity. The occupant of the tub may then readily swing his legs outward, either arise from a sitting position with his feet safely upon the floor, or slide easily onto the seat of a wheel chair. Again, there is no danger or no lifting necessary for the occupant to 7 leave the tub.
it will be noted that the bathtub structure is very economical, consistent with the additional advantages, affords ready access to all parts, is simple in construction,
long lived, and may be very facilely used. All handles that need actuating are well within the reach of the occupant of the tub, and justas readily accessible by an attendant, if the occupant is unable to manipulate them.
It will be understood that modifications and variations may be effected without departing from the scope of the novel concepts of the present invention.
I claim as my invention:
1. In a bathtub assembly, a base tank, a bathtub on said base tank and having a drain port leading into said tank, said bathtub having an opening in the side thereof, and a door movable vertically into and out of said base tank to selectively open and close said opening.
2. In a bathtub assembly, a base tank, a bathtub on said base tank and having a drain port leading into said tank, said bathtub having an opening in the side thereof, a door movable vertically into and out of said base tank to selectively open and close said opening, automatic means for raising and lowering said door, and controls for said means accessible from inside said bathtub.
3. In a bathtub assembly, a base tank, a bathtub on said base tank and having a drain port leading into said tank, said bathtub having an opening in the side thereof, a door movable vertically into and out of said base tank to selectively open and close said opening, hydraulic lift means including a cylinder and piston to raise said door over said opening, means to lock said door in raised position, and controls for said lift and release means for said locking means accessible from inside said bathtub.
4. In a bathtub assembly, a base tank, a bathtub on said base tank and having a drain port leading into said tank, said bathtub having an opening in the side thereof, a door movable vertically into and out of said base tank to selectively open and close said opening, supporting brackets in said base tank, a carrier bar, pulley means and rotary guide means for said door on said carrier bar, said carrier bar being slidable into engagement with said brackets, and door lift means trained over said pulley means.
5. In a bathtub assembly, a base tank, a bathtub on said base tank and having a drain port leading into said tank, said bathtub having an opening in the side thereof, a door movable vertically into and out of said base tank to selectively open and close said opening, hydraulic lift means for said door including a cylinder, a vertically movable piston in said cylinder, a piston rod, door ele-' vating means connected to said piston rod, means to lock said piston rod in elevated position to hold said door elevated, and means accessible from inside said bathtub to release the last said means.
6. In a bathtub assembly, a base tank, a bathtub on said base tank and having a drain port leading into said tank, said bathtub having an opening in the side thereof, a door movable vertically into and out of said base tank to selectively open and close said opening, hydraulic lift means for said door including a cylinder, a vertically movable piston in said cylinder, a piston rod, door elevating means connected to said piston rod, means to lock said piston rod in elevated position to hold said door elevated, drain means from said cylinder into said base tank to free the cylinder of liquid while said door remains elevated, and release means for said locking means to permit the door to drop by gravity when actuated.
7. In a bathtub assembly, a base, a bathtub supported on said base and having a drain port therein, said bathtub having an opening in the side thereof, a door movable vertically to selectively open and close the opening, mechanical means to move said door over said opening, means to lock said door in closed position, and controls for said mechanical means and release means for said locking means accessible from inside said bathtub.
8. A bathtub assembly which comprises a bathtub having an oversized drain port therein, said bathtub having an opening in one side thereof, a door movable vertically to selectively open and close said opening, a power means for raising said door over said opening, clamp means to sealingly lock said door over said opening, means to lock said door in raised position, and controls for said power means and release means for said locking means accessible from inside said bathtub.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 746,390 Schmidt Dec. 8, 1903 1,799,145 Bischof Apr. 7,- 1931 FOREIGN PATENTS 22,624 Great Britain Dec. 28, 1891