US 2838208 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 10, 1958 E; c. LEVIT 2,838,208
DISPENSING SYSTEM Filed June 15, 1955 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 fiTVE' ZUP fan A20 LEV/7- June 10, 1958 EC. LEVIT 2,838,208.
DISPENSING SYSTEM Filed June 15, 1955 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 few/12o C [av/r 2,sss,20s DISPENSING SYSTEM Edward. C. Levitt, St. Joseph, Mich, assignor, by mesne assignments, to Whirlpool Corporation, a corporation of Delaware I Application June 15, 1955, Seri l No. 515,739
9 Claims. ((31. 222-133) The present invention relates to a dispensing system, and more particularly to a self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system. V
In dispensing and mixing materials, and particularly where at least one of the materials dispensed is to be dispensed in measured quantities, the apparatus heretofore known and utilized has not been as successful as desired since the apparatus was subject to clogging, particularly in the dispensing valve for the measured material. In general, efforts to construct a valve so that it did not clog have, until now, proven generally unsuccessful and it has therefore been necessary in dispensing and mixing apparatus of this type to stop operation of the apparatus periodically and clean the same.
This problem has been particularly acute in the appliance field, such as the field of automatic or semiautomatic dishwashing and clothes washing since the measured material is a soap or detergent which has a strong tendency to clog the valve therefor. This is true where the soap or detergent is of the liquid or powder or flake or granular variety.
It is, therefore, an important object and feature of the present invention to provide a new and improved self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system. That is, it is an important object and feature of the present invention to provide a new and improved dispensing and mixing system which is a self-flushing and self-cleaning system whereby the dispensing valve istflushed and cleaned upon each full cycle of operation of the system.
This feature of the invention is accomplished by disposing the dispensing valve directly in the stream of the primary material, which in the case of washing'apparatus is water, whereby theprimary material will wash and flush and clean the dispensing valve. 7
Still another object of the present invention is to pro vide .a mechanism of this type .which is operable by a single valve actuator to dispensera measured amount of the additive material while closing the system against fiow, and thereafter closing the reservoir of additive material and opening the system to flow of additive. material and primary material whereby thematerials arerrnixed. In .an embodiment of the invention this feature is provided by the utilization of a double'head valve which .is'actuated between a pair of axially opposed positions including an outlet for all materials and an iniet'for the additive materials respectively, and means selectively moving the double head valve between the described positions therefor. t
,Still' another object of the present invention is to pro vide a new and improved dispensing and mixing system which is operable to dispense a measured quantity of an additive material. g
Yet another object of the present invention is'to provide a new and improved dispensing andv mixing system wherein the system is operable to dispense a measured quantity of a material and is. further operable to be variously adjusted to deliver different measured quantities of the material. This variability of the system is ac- "like parts, and in which:
Figure 1' is a sectional view of adispenser embodying f complished inanembodiment of this invention'by providing the measuring chamberwith a cylinder-like configuration and equipping the same with a piston that is ax1ally movable whereby the volumetric measure of the material filling the measuring chamber may be varied in a ccordance with the variable positioning of the piston.
Still another object of the present'inventionis to provide a new and improveddispenser and dispensing system with an automatically controllable venting mechanism for a reservoir of material to be measured out whereby the dispensing valve and ,th'e vent'for the reservoirare ,substantially simultaneously operated and the vent is sealed atall times in which material is not being dispensed from the reservoir. Still other objects, features and advantages of the pres ent invention will become readily apparent fromt efol,-
lowing detailed description or" the presentinvention and embodiments thereof, from the claims, and frc nrsthexac- I companying drawings in which each and veverydetail shown is fully completely disclosed as a part flof this specification, in which like reference numerals refer to the principles of this invention;
Figure 2 is a fragmental sectional view of the dispenser and mixer of Figure I viewed as taken substantially along the line II- ll of Figure 1;
Figure .3 is a sectional view of another embodiment of a dispenser incorporating the principlesofthisjinvention; and
Figure 4 is a fragmental sectional view of the dispenser of 'Figure 3 viewed as taken substantially along the line IV-IV ofFigure 3.
As shown onthe drawings: j 7
There is fully illustrated in Figure "l, a dispensing .and mixing mechanism and completesystem 10 which is operable to dispense measured quantities ofa material, such as adetergent, from a reservoir or bottle or hopper 11 thereof to, for example, a dishwashing or clothes Washing machinetnotshown) through an outlet 12in a valve'hohs; ing 13. The mechanism and system 18 is also operable toreceive a primary fluid-such aslwater or the like through an inlet 14 in the housing 13 and appropriately connected to any convenient or desired'means such as a conduit-or pipe 15 to as'durce of supply (not shown) thr ough fa valve such as solenoid-operated valve 16 having tangetrically energizable solenoid actuator 17. I The valve mechanism in the dispenser housing 13 includes a double headed valve piston 18 which is reciprocably'disposed in thehousi-ng chamber l9 and controllable between a pair ,mountedaonthe housing 13'by a-sealing diaphragm 25i and connected at its other end 22 to the armature -23: of an electrically energizable solenoid valve actuator 2-4 mounted on a bracket 25 which-is in turnsecured to the housing 13 byany convenient means such as screws 26 or thelike.
In an installation such as an automatic or semi-automatic dishwasher or clothes washer,-the solenoids 17 and 24 are electrically connectable through leads 27- 27and 28-48, :respeotively, to a i source ;of electrical energy through switches '29-,a nd 30 which are coupled through any convenient coupli-ng'means, indicated generally by the broken mechanical coupling lines' 3l and 32,: respectively/to a control system indicated .generallyby- -thelbox 63 which maybe a timer mechanism or the like "The timer mechanism or other control system 33't hjereby controls openingand closing ofthe switches 29 -a;nd 3t) to 'control opening and closing of the valve 16 and tQQQni Also, in such an installation with such control system,
C P a-tented June 10, 195,8 7
the control mechanism 33 will be so operated that generally the solenoid 17 will be energized to open the water valve 16 only when the solenoid 24 is deenergized to close the reservoir 11 from the chamber 19 by moving the double head valve piston 18 upwardly. Also, the valve 16 will be closed by deenergization of the solenoid 17 whenever the solenoid 24 is energized so that the washing machine, most sanitation codes require that valve piston 18 closes the outlet 12 and opens the chamber 19 to the reservoir 11.
By this mode of operation, closure of the water valve 16 results in draining the chamber 19 and a closure of the inlet 14 by a check valve 34 disposed in the inlet 14 within the housing 13. Then, upon energization of the solenoid 24 the outlet 12 will be closed and the chamber 19 will receive a measured quantity of material such as soap or detergent or the like from the reservoir or bottle or hopper 11. Thereafter, closing the reservoir 11 from the chamber 19 by deenergization of the solenoid 24 will open the outlet 12 for drainage of the meas ured quantity of material in the chamber 19 and reenergization of the solenoid 17 will permit water to flow through the chamber 19, opening the check valve 34, and out through the outlet 12 thus mixing with the detergent or soap and at the same time fully flushing and cleaning the chamber 19 and the double head valve piston 18 and the portion of the pivoted member 20 within the chamber 19. This period of flushing fully flushes and cleans the dispenser valve and removes any necessity for disassembly of the valve in order to flush or clean the same. i
For the admission of the soap or detergent into the valve chamber 19 from the reservoir 11, the valve body 13 is provided with a third aperture 35 which threadably receives a valve seat and coupling unit 36 which is also internally threaded to a shoulder 37 to receive the threaded neck 38 of the reservoir 11. At the inner extremity of the annular aperture 39 in the coupling unit 36, there is provided a valve seat 40 contoured to be sealingly engaged by the upper valve head 41 of the double valve head piston 18.
The piston 18 is a substantially cylindrical member which is reciprocably axially movable within the chamber 19 and the opposite end thereof from the upper valve head 41 is also formed as a valve head 42 to sealingly engage a valve seat 43 at the outlet 12 of the chamber 19 in the housing 13. Thus, when the head 41 sealingly engages the seat 40, the reservoir 11 is sealed from the chamber 19, while when the valve head is moved axially, the valve head 42 will sealingly engage the valve seat 43 to open the reservoir 11 and close the outlet 12;
To move the valve piston 18 axially within the chambet, the lever 20 is provided with a ball head 44 at its inner end which is received in a radial substantially conical recess 45 in the valve piston 18. Since the lever 20 is pivotal by its mounting in the sealing diaphragm 21, pivotal movement-f the lever 20 will move the piston 18 axially to either of its valve closing and seating positions. To retain the valve piston 18 in proper coaxial alignment with the seats 40 and 43, the piston 18 is provided with a plurality of radial wings or webs 46 which hold the piston coaxially within the chamber 19 and coaxially with the seats 40 and 43.
A similar but modified construction embodying the principles of the ,present invention whereby dispensing and mixing of a measured quantity of material may be effected is illustrated in Figures 3 and 4 wherein there is shown a dispensing and mixing system for dispensing a measured quantity of a material such as a detergent carried in the reservoir 11 and an outlet 12' provided therein and particularly a valve and measuring housing 13' having a second inlet 14' for admitting a primary material such as water or the like therethrough and through a splash guard 15' secured in the inlet 14'. In an installation such as a dishwashing machine or a clothes there be an anti-backup gap or break in the water line. Therefore, the water is fed into the system of this in vention through a supply tube or a pipe 15" which discharges openly into the splash guard 15" which takes the form of a funnel and venturi nozzle having a throat 50 in its passage to the inlet 14' of the dispensing and mixing mechanism. The water is supplied from an appropriate source and the flow thereof is controlled by a solenoid actuated valve 16 which is operated by a solenoid 17.
Within the mechanism, the valve includes a double head valve piston 18 disposed for axial movement within the measuring and mixing chamber 19 of the housing 13 and axially movable by a lever 20' pivotally connected to the valve piston 18 and pivotally mounted in a sealing diaphragm 21 which is secured onto the housing 13' by a flange 51 having an annular deformation 52 which holds the diaphragm 21 in place, and which flange is in turn secured to the housing 13 by screws or the like 26. The flange is also provided with an aperture 53 to accommodate manipulation of the lever 20' which has its outer end pivotally connected, at 22' to the armature 23' of a solenoid actuator 24'. The solenoid is mounted on a carrying bracket 25' part of which is formed to provide the flange 51.
As in the system illustrated in Figure l, the solenoids 17' and 24' are connectable to a source of electrical energy (not shown) through leads 27 and 28' respectively which include switches 29' and 30 coupled to such a mechanism as a timer or the like 33 as illustrated by the broken mechanical coupling lines 31' and 32' respectively. Herein, the timer mechanism 33' is also illustrated as being electrically energizable and connectable to the source of electrical supply through leads 33 and a on-off switch 33".
The operation of the system of Figures 3 and 4 thus far described is substantially identical to that of the system of Figure 1 so that actuation and energization of the solenoid 24' will move the double head valve piston 18' downwardly whereby the valve head 42' will sealingly close upon the seat 43' of the outlet 12 while deenergization thereof will cause the solenoid 24' to move the valve piston 18' upwardly so that the upper head 41' thereon will sealingly seat on the valve seat 40' on the inlet coupling member 36' secured in a threaded annulus 35' in the housing 13' and carrying the reservoir 11.
At such time as the solenoid 24' is energized to admit material from the reservoir or tank or hopper or bottle 11 into the measuring chamber 19', the solenoid 17 will be deenergized to close the valve 16 and thereby cut off the supply of water or other material through the inlet 14. Thereupon, the check valve assembly 34 which includes a water check valve 54 having a spring 55 biasing a ball 56 towards a ball seat 57 in the inlet 14' will close the inlet. With the admission of material such as a detergent or soap from the hopper 11 into the measuring chamber 19, as the chamber fills a float ball 58 in a vent valve 59 forming a part of the check valve assembly 34 will be raised until it seats on a seat 60 of a vent aperture 61 in the check valve and vent valve block 62 secured in the housing 13' by screws or the like 63. Thus, the float ball 58 will seal the vent and close the chamber 19' when the chamber is filled.
While the check valve assembly 34 has been illustrated and described as including a check valve 54 and a vent valve 59, of the ball type with the vent valve utilizing a float ball 58 which may be of a lightweight material such as cork or hollow nylon or the like it being apparent that such a system would be necessary if the air gap inlet was not provided, it will be understood that the present invention contemplates the utilization of a single valve such as a ball valve wherein the ball is a cork ball and a single aperture in the housing oper'atesboth 'asa'vent while the chamber 19 is filling with detergent from the hopper 11' and as a check valve in the inlet. Under such circumstances, the flow of water will open the inlet and remove the ball from its 'seat while when the -"c1ramse ru11 of detergent the ball will seat in the inlet. There is then no necessity for using a biasing spring such as the spring 55 to close the inlet but an air gap inlet would be necessary. It is also to be noted that in the embodiment of the invention illustrated and described here, as Well as in other embodiments utilizing the principles offthis invention, the entire system. is self-flush ing in that itwill be flushed as described hereinabovelin conjunction with the embodiment of the invention illusmean Figure l, and in Figure 3,:even the vent valve will be flushed since water is applied into the system through apertures 64, 65and 66 in the check valve assembly. Since it is often desired to vary the measured .quantity of detergent dispensed and mixed by the system, the present invention contemplates such variation by forming the housing 13 and the measuring chamber '19 as an elongated cylinder which receives an axiallymovable piston '67 therein. This piston 67 carries an annular sealing ring 68 and is itself carried on a piston rod 69 extending rearwardly outwardly through acylinder cap 70 which is axially apertured whereby the rod 69 may ipa'ss therethrough as at 71 and which is secured in the housing 13 as by threadably engaging .the same at 72. A linking pin 73 near the outer end of the piston rod 69 couples the rod to a measuring indexing crank lever 74 by being received in a slot 75 near the end of one arm 76 of the lever. At its apex, the lever 74 is hingedly and pivotally connected to a pivot bracket 77 which is secured to the exterior of the housing 135, and atthe extremity of -the other arm 78 of the crank 74 it carries a manipulating indexing handle 79 whereby vertical manipulation and displacement of the handle 79 operates through the crank -"7'4"-to axially displace the measuring piston .67 in the measuring chamber 19 to vary the volumetric capacity of the chamber 19' and thereby vary the measured quantity of material to be dispensed from the hopper 11 and from the dispensing and mixing system.
In substantially the same. manner in which the double head valve piston 18 was retained in position in the embodiment of the invention viewed in Figures 1 and 2, the double head piston 18' is also retained in axial alignment with the detergent inlet aperture 39 and the outlet 12' in that it is provided with radially extending wings or rings 46 which maintain a proper alignment of the double head valve piston 18 with the seats and 43. Also, the double head valve piston 18' is provided with a radial substantially conical recess to receive the inner end of the lever 20' which is provided with a slot 80 riding on a pin 81 in the double head valve piston 18'.
As stated hereinabove, the operation of the system 10 is substantially the same as that of the operation of the system 10 illustrated in Figures 1 and 2, but in accordance with the principles of the present invention there is also provided a reservoir or hopper vent 82 on the otherwise closed top of the hopper 11. The vent 82 includes a vent valve 83 having a valve seat 84 and a vent aperture 85 therein. The valve seat 84 is correspondingly configurated to the head 86 of a valve closure rod 87 pivotally carried on a link 88 at one end of the link, the other end of the link being pivotally connected to a pivot bracket 89 by a pin 90, the bracket 89 being secured to the hopper 11' as at 91. The bracket '89 also has an extending arm 92 carrying a pin 93 projecting through a slot 94 and the valve closure rod 87 whereby the rod is held in proper alignment with thevent valve seat 84 for proper closure thereof when opened in the manner hereinafter described.
At an intermediate point between its ends, the link 88 is pivotally connected to an actuator rod or connecting -rod*-'95 which is also pivotally connected, as at 96 to-the lever'ztl between the sealing diaphragm 21' and EitS pivotal connection 22" to the armature 23' of the soletity thereofinto the measuring chamber .19 of this dispens'ing' and mixing system .10 which is self-flushing.
From the foregoing, it will be seen that numerotisvariations and modifications may be effected without departingifrom the true spirit and scope of the novel concepts and principles of this invention. I, therefore, in-
tend to cover all such modifications and variations as fall within the true spirit and scope of the novel concepts and principles of this invention.
I claim as .my invention:
1. A self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chamber therein .with an' outlet therefrom and inlets thereto, a first valve means 'selectivelyopenin'g said outlet and opening one of said .inlets whereby said outlet. is closed when said one inlet'isopen and said one inlet is closed when said ou'tletis open, a secondvalve means to control material flow to the chamber through the other inlet,-a first valve operator connected to operate said first valve, a
:second valve operator connected to operate a said second valve,.means to control both said valve operators to .maintainsaid second valve closed whensaid one inlet is openedby said valve means, and means to vary the capacity of said chamber without openingthe chamber to determine the quantity oflmaterial admissible thereto through said one inlet.
2. A self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chamber therein with an outlet therefrom and an inlet thereto, and valvemeans selectively opening said outlet and opening said inlet whereby said outlet is closed when said inlet is open and said inlet is closed when said outlet is open, and a movable wall for the chamber sealed at its edges against adjacent walls and relatively movable to the adjacent Walls to vary the capacity of said chamber to determine the quantity of material admissible thereto through said inlet. A
3. A self-flushing andcleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chamber therein with an outlet therefrom and an inlet thereto, and valve means selectively opening said outlet and opening said inlet whereby said outlet is closed when said inlet is open and said inlet is closed when said outlet is open, a recipr'ocable piston in said chamber, means cooperatively arranged with said piston external of said chamber and in leak-proof relationship with the chamber to adjustably control the position of the piston in the chamher to vary the capacity of the chamber to determine the quantity of material admissible thereto through said inlet. i
4. A self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chainberrtherein with an outlet therefrom and inlets thereto, and valve means selectively opening said outlet and opening one of said inlets whereby said outlet is closed when said one inlet is open and said one inlet is closed when said outlet is open, a second valve to control material flow to the chamber through the other inlet,,and means to control both said valve means and said second valve to maintain said second valve closed when said one inlet is opened the position of the piston in the chamber, said piston slidable against the walls of the chamber to prevent passage of material and to vary the capacity of the chamber to determine the quantity of material admissible thereto through said one inlet.
5. A self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chamber therein with an outlet therefrom and inlets thereto, and valve means selectively opening said outlet and opening one of said inlets whereby said outlet is closed when said one inlet is open and said one inlet is closed when said outlet is open, a second valve to control material flow to the chamber through the other inlet, and means to control both said valve means and said second valve to maintain said second valve closed when said one inlet is opened by said valve means, a reservoir connected to said one inlet, a vent on said reservoir, and means coupling said vent to said control means whereby said vent is opened only when said one inlet is open.
6. A self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chamber therein with an outlet therefrom and an inlet thereto, and valve means selectively opening said outlet and opening said inlet whereby said outlet is closed when said inlet is open and said inlet is closed when said outlet is open, and means to vary the capacity of said chamber to determine the quantity of material admissible thereto through said inlet, and a vent valve in said chamber to vent said chamber when the chamber is filling with material supplied thereto through said inlet and to close said chamber when the chamber is filled.
7. A self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chamber therein with an outlet therefrom and an inlet thereto, said outlet and said inlet being aligned and havingvalve seats at their junctions with said chamber, a reciprocable double valve head in said chamber displaceable between positions closing said outlet and closing said inlet respectively, and valve actuator means coupled to' said double valve head to selectively move said head to said positions.
8. A self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chamber therein with an outlet therefrom and inlets thereto, said outlet and one of said inlets being aligned and having valve seats at their junctions with said chamber, a reciprocable double valve head in said chamber displaceable between positions closing said outlet and closing one of said inlets respectively, and valve actuator means coupled to said double valve head to selectively move said head to said positions, a second valve to control material flow to the chamber through the other inlet, and means to control both said valve actuator means and said second valve to maintain said second valve closed when said one inlet is opened by said valve actuator means.
9. A self-flushing and cleaning dispensing and mixing system comprising a housing enclosing a chamber therein with an outlet therefrom and an inlet thereto, and valve means selectively opening said outlet and opening said inlet whereby said outlet is closed when said inlet is open and said inlet is closed when said outlet is open, a vent in said chamber to vent the chamber when it is filling with materialsupplied therethrough through said inlet and to close said chamber when it is filled, and means for closing said vent when the chamber is full whereby an accurate measure of quantity of the filled chamber is obtained.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,287,141 Travis Dec. 10, 1918 1,479,103 Lyons Jan. 1, 1924 1,621,861 Woods Mar. 22, 1927 2,573,787 Ganahl et al Nov. 6, 1951 2,578,994 Dunaway Dec. 18, 1951 2,718,334 Notar et al Sept. 20, 1955