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Publication numberUS2883675 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 28, 1959
Filing dateDec 12, 1955
Priority dateDec 12, 1955
Publication numberUS 2883675 A, US 2883675A, US-A-2883675, US2883675 A, US2883675A
InventorsHartman Jr Fred G
Original AssigneeHartman Jr Fred G
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Flush tank valves
US 2883675 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

April 1959 F. G. HARTMAN, JR 2,883,675

FLUSH TANK VALVES Filed Dec. 12, 1955 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 253 I {44 Q l .h A I 62 LQ GS 4e v-1; I 'lllll'i V 0 INVENTOR. :u



April 28, 1959 -F. G. HARTMAN, JR 7 3,

FLUSH TANK VALVES I Filed Dec. 12, 1955 I 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Q I N VEN TOR.


ATTDRNEY FLUSH TANK VALVES 7 Fred G. Hartman, Jr., Manlius, N.Y. Application December 12, 1955, Serial No. 552,489

1 Claim. (Cl. 4-57 This invention relates to ball flush valves employed in closet flush tanks and more particularly to a float type ball flush valve, the buoyancy of which may be varied to control the extent of flushing and measure the escape of water from the tank.

In flush tanks of the type generally in use, the tank comprises a reservoir for storing a predetermined quantity of flush water, the reservoir being provided with a float controlled water inlet valve to determine the water level in the tank each time the tank is filled, and to maintain that level. The flush valve utilized in such tanks to control the flush discharge is the hollow ball type, which ball is open at the botom, the ball having a spherical or conical valve seat engaging surface surrounding its bottom opening, which is adapted to engage an annular seat which forms the upper end of the discharge outlet to the toilet bowl. Air is retained in the ball as in an air bell. The ball is adapted to be lifted from the seat by manual operation and by reason of its containing air trapped therewithin, the ball tends to float within the limit of movement allowed, to the surface'of the water within the tank. As the water level subsides during a flushing operation the ball floats on the water surface, finally reseating itself on the annular seat when the tank is empty. In such an arrangement once the ball valve is lifted from the seat, the water pressure, due to static head, acts uniformly around the entire surface of: the ball valve instead of the upper surface and that portion of the lower surface not covered by the seat and discharge outlet. Once the ball rises from the seat in the tank and thus becomes buoyant, there is no way of cansing it to reseat until the water level has permitted the valve to float into seating position. In every flushing operation the entire tank of water is consumed and delivered to the toilet bowl. In rural areas and alsewhere, where septic tanks and cesspools are employed there may be drainage difficulties which are being overloaded unnecessarily by repeated flushings of the toilet. If there be a water shortage in the domestic supply and it is necessary to conserve water, it would be desirable to provide mechanism whereby any fractional portion of the Un te S at s water contained in the tank reservoir may be used for flushing, especially when adequate flushing can be obtained without using the full supply. v

The present invention is directed to a ball valve of the floating type, in which the ibuoyancy of the valve is controlled to cause the valve to reseat in advance of floating to a seat as the tank water level recedes. The invention is further directed to a ball valve of the floating air bell type, open at the bottom, in which the air. trapped within the bell is allowed to escape at a preset fixed metered rate commencing each time the flushing operation is initiated whereby in a predetermined time the buoyancy of the valve is destroyed, and the valve allowed to sink and reseat upon partial emptying of the tank. The invention is further directed to: a'ball valve in which provision is made forv the metered escape of air. to.-grad'- Patented Apr. 28,

ually destroy the buoyancy of the valve each time a flush ing operation takes place, and in which such means extends to an accessible location near the rim of the tank, whereby the escape may be manually cut off to conveniently restore normal float valve operation when desired. The arrangement is such that the air escape may be reestablished at any time whereby flushing will be eflected by a reduced quantity of water less than the flush tank capacity. In one form of the invention provision is made for readily adjusting the metered rate of air flow, whereby the quantity of water consumed or a partial flush can be quickly set to that desired. The invention is further directed to an arnangement for automatically effecting flushing by .a partial use of the tank capacity, which automatic operation may be circumvented at any time to provide a full flush utilizing the full tank capacity by efiecting manual control during the flushing operation or in which a subsequent flush utilizing the remainder of the water can be had. The invention is further directed to positive means for accomplishing the purpose, of low cost, and readily adapted to installation in standard toilet flush tanks.

The above and other novel features of the invention will appear more fully hereinafter from the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. It is expressly understood that the drawings are employed for purposes of illustration only and are not designed as a definition of the limits of the invention, reference being had for this purpose to the appended claims.

In the drawings, wherein like reference characters indicate like parts:

Fig. 1 is a sectional view through a flush tank in which the ball valve is shown;

Fig. 2 is a composite view, with parts in section and parts in perspective to illustrate the operative structure;

Fig. 3 is a fragmentary perspective of the air. bleed shown in air bleed cutoff position;

Fig. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the air bleed metering port;

Fig. 5 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the air bleed connection to the ball valve;

Fig. 6 is a fragmentary sectional view of a modified air bleed connection to the ball valve;

Fig. 7 is an elevational view of a modified form of support bracket;

Fig. 8 is a fragmentary view approximately full size with parts shown in section takensubstantially on the line 8--8 of Figure 7;

Fig. 9 is a sectional view taken on the line 9-9 of Fig. 8; and i Fig. 10 is a fragmentary perspective view of the adjustable portion of the bracket, and clamp screw shown in exploded relation. 1

In Figure 1, there is shown the flush tank or reser voir 10 having therein a water inlet pipe 12, such pipe being provided with a float valve 14 actuated by a float 16. The float and valve are adapted to provide a set water level within the tank as is indicated at 18. In the bottom of the tank is a discharge outlet 20 leading to the toilet bowl, as is well understood in the art. Such discharge outlet passes through the bottom of the tank 10 and terminates within the tank in an annular valve seat'22, Formed as a part of the seat but located below the seat is a lateral conduit 24 having an upward extending overflow tube 26, the upper end 28 of which prevents the water level 18 from rising above the rim of the tank. The overflow tube 26 as is well understood in the art is connectedto the outlet 20 at all times.

' Seated onthe valve seat 22, is the ball valve 30 and extending from its upper endv is a stem 32, the upper-end assaars ofwhich is bent as at 34 to provide a shoulder. Such stem is adapted to freely slide vertically in a guide 36 mounted on the overflow pipe 26. The guide 36 tends to holdthe stem and the ball valve in axial alignment withthe seat 22.

In order to actuate the ball valve, the upper end'of the stem has slidably mounted thereon aloop 38formed at right angles to and at the end of the link 40. The loop i's of a diameter to engage the shoulder 34. The link at its upper end is pivotally connected as at 42 to the end of a lever arm 44. The lever arm passes through the tank wall as at 46 where. it is fulcrumed, and an operating handle 48 is provided outside the tank to operatev the lever. Suitable stops to limit the angular movenient of thelever (not shown) are provided.

' As shown in Figures 2 and 3 the ball comprises bottom andtop conically shaped sections Sll and 52 the bottom section being suitably shaped to provide a satisfactory seating engagement with the. valve seat 22. The upper end of the ball valve is provided with a metal insert 54 having a threaded aperture 56 into which the lower end of the stem 32 is threaded.

The valve ball is open in the bottom as at 57 so as to permit water to enter the ball, to the extent that the air trapped within the ball permits, each time the ball is lifted from the seat for a flushing operation. The ball is otherwise irnperforate except for an air bleed connection formed by the insert nipple SS in the upper wall thereof. Such nipple is connected by a flexible tube 60 leading to a metering fitting 62. adapted to be held near the top of the tank, above the water level by a bracket 64. The bracket has a U portion 6a adapted to clip or hook over the upper edge or rim 68 of the tank and a lateral inwardly extending bracket portion 70, having an aperture '72 through which the fitting 62 and tube 60 may freely pass. The fitting has a flange or bead 74 of a diameter greater than the aperture, to support the upper end of the hose in the bracket.

The bracket may have a notch 76 adjacent the aperture for holding the end of the tube, hen a free portion thereof is drawn up through the aperture 72 whereby to provide a pinch shut olf as indicated in Fig. 3, at 78.

It will be understood that the air normally trapped in the valve ball will cause the ball to float, once it is lifted from the seat, so that upon manual operation of the lever 44 to lift the stem 32, the ball is lifted from the seat and rises by its buoyancy, the stem sliding freely through the loop 38. If the air trapped Within the ball, the ball acting as an air bell, is not allowed to escape, the ball will tend to float, and will be prevented from reseating until the water level in the tank has receded sufficiently to float the ball to seating positron.

By means of the air bleed provided by the tube 60, and as controlled by the metering orifice 8% in the fitting 62, air is allowed to escape from the ball, when lifted from its seat. This allows water to enter the ball, and before the level of the water within the ball reaches the lip 82 of the nipple, sufiicient air has escaped so as to destroy the buoyancy. When the ball thus becomes no longer buoyant, it sinks, and reseats, without awaiting the usual recession of the water level within the tank heretofore depended upon to float the ball to its seat. Thus a flush utilizing a partial portion of the tank capacity is effected, conserving the remainder of the water within the tank for a subsequent flush.

As soon as the ball reseats, air flows into the ball through the tube 60, and the water within the ball drops out into the discharge conduit 20.-

It will be seen that by selecting a bleed port 30 of a proper diameter, the time that it takes to cause the ball to lose its buoyancy may be closely controlled, so that accurate control over the flush period is had. If for any reason, it isdesired to'temporarily restorethe flushing cycle to thefloating-controlof theball, the air outlet through tube 60 can be blocked. A convenient means for accompanying this purpose is shown in Fig. 3, wherein the tube is looped and pinched as at 78 and the end or fitting 62 inserted in the slot 76, which holds the tube looped and pinched as shown.

If desired the ball may be provided with a fitting such as 86, which can be interposed between the stem 32 and bushing 54, such fitting having a stem having a male thread at 88, and an internal thread as at to receive the stem 32. The bushing 54 is drilled as at 92 to connect'with the-ball internally, and the fitting is providedwith a port 94, and inclined nipple 96, to which the tube 60 is connected. Since the diameter of the fitting, to apply to standard balls is necessarily of small diameter, the port 94 will be constricted, and may serve as the metering constriction. Thus the fitting 62 would have a relatively non-constricting port 89 of larger diameter.

The apparatus is such as to be readily adapted to any standard flush tank, and once installed, the apparatus automatically controls the flush flow period. At the same time, it will be observed that if it be desired to utilize the entire tank capacity for a flush, the ball may be held in elevated position from its seat by manually holding the lever arm 44 in the up position.

In the form of the invention disclosed in Figures 7-10 inclusive, the support bracket or clip comprises a flat resilient strip formed to provide a central fiat body portion 182, having its upper end bent over as at 84 to form a guide and support for the tube 60, and downwardly as at 186 to form a clip to extend into the overflow pipe 28. The lower end of the portion 186 is bent inwardly as at 87 to engage the internal wall of the pipe 28. The lower end of the body portion is provided with a bent portion 138 forming a second guide for the tube 60 and an upwardly extending portion 1% which is adaptedto be adjustably drawn toward and away from the central body portion, by adjustment of the wing not 192 and screw 194. The bent portion 188 is provided with a hole 196 of about the external diameter of the tube, whereas the portion 84 is provided with a hole 98 which is somewhat smaller than the external diameter of the tube, whereby the tube is frictionally supported from slipping away from the clamp. Both holes are disposed to one side of the vertical center line of the clip, whereas the screw 194 is offset to the other side of the center line, so that the tube can extend substantially straight through the clip.

By regulating the thumb screw and squeezing the tube to any desired degree, the rate of air bleed from the ball is controlled. Thus the rate at which the air is allowed to escape from the ball is preset, and the time delay for destroying the buoyancy of the ball is adjustable. Once adjusted to suit conditions, it may remain so adjusted, and oneach fiush after the tank has filled, the actual quantity of water allowed to escape, will be the same, and the partial flush is thus established.

After a partial flush, if it be desired to augment the flush by utilizing the remaining water in the tank, the operator may manipulate the handle 48 so as to again lift the ball 30 from the seat, and thereby permit the remaining water to act as a secondary flush, such flush being concluded when the ball 35} again reseats.

When the secondary flush is resorted to, there is generally a brief lapse of time during which the ball loses the water which has flowed into the ball during the partial fiush, th e water discharging down the drain Zll. The openingin the bottom of the ball is sutficiently large to permit rapid-simultaneous spillage, an entrance of air, so that emptying the ball to restore its buoyancy when subsequently lifted from the seat is not dependent upon air entering'through the conduit 20.

Although several embodiments of the invention have been-illustrated and described,itis to be understood that the inventionis not limited. thereto. As :various. changes in the construction and arrangement may be made without departing from the sprit of the invention, as will be apparent to those skilled in the art, reference will be had to the appended claims for a definition of the limits of the invention.

This application is a continuation in part of application Serial No. 504,827, filed April 29, 1955, now abandoned.

What is claimed is:

A valve ball assembly for a closet flush tank having an overflow tube comprising a hollow ball having an upper portion and a lower valve seat engaging portion, said lower portion having an aperture, to admit air into the ball to render the same buoyant when submerged and unseated in a flush tank, a port in the upper portion of said ball, a flexible conduit means connecting with said port at one end, and bracket means adapted to support the free end of said tube for exhausting air from said ball to atmosphere to admit water into said ball through the bottom aperture to destroy the buoyancy thereof, said bracket comprising a clip of strip material having a flat central body portion at one end reversely bent over downwardly and adapted for insertion into the overflow tube and said clip having its other end portion reversely bent over and adapted to extend upwardly along the body portion, apertures in each of said reverse bends through which said conduit extends, said conduit extending between said upwardly bent portion and the body portion, and means for adjustably drawing said last named bent portion and body portion together to flatten said conduit, whereby to regulate the rate of air flow therethrough.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 379,159 Harkins Mar. 6, 1888 614,648 DEste et a1 Nov. 22, 1898 914,067 Osborn Mar. 2, 1909

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US379159 *Oct 4, 1887Mar 6, 1888 Automatic valve for water-tanks
US614648 *May 6, 1897Nov 22, 1898THE D ESTE a SEELEY COMPANYCistern for water-closets
US914067 *Apr 13, 1905Mar 2, 1909William H OsbornWater-closet flushing apparatus.
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2988751 *Jul 20, 1959Jun 20, 1961Harry RutherfordSafety flush valve
US3165756 *Dec 12, 1962Jan 19, 1965Simpson Robert LVent means to vary buoyancy of a flush valve
US3324482 *Jan 11, 1966Jun 13, 1967Wustner William EAdjustable toilet tank flush valve
US3331084 *May 25, 1965Jul 18, 1967Wustner William EAdjustable toilet tank flush valve
US3365730 *Dec 30, 1964Jan 30, 1968Peter P. ChiappettaWater saver flush valve
US3466672 *Jun 1, 1966Sep 16, 1969Rathmann JimFluid tank with dump valve
US3733618 *Jan 4, 1972May 22, 1973Wiegand WWater saver attachment for toilet tank flush valve
US3858250 *Aug 16, 1973Jan 7, 1975Coglitore AnthonyActuating mechanism for toilet flush tank or dual flush type
US4145774 *Jun 20, 1977Mar 27, 1979Sullivan Donald EDual flush apparatus for water closets
US4175296 *Oct 11, 1977Nov 27, 1979Goldman Harley RVariable control for toilet flush tanks
US4225987 *Sep 4, 1979Oct 7, 1980Goldman Harley RVariable volume control for toilet flush tanks
US4593419 *Oct 29, 1984Jun 10, 1986Derus Gene AFlush valve control for water closet
US4631760 *Jul 24, 1985Dec 30, 1986Leishman Graham WAutomatic flushing system
US4945580 *May 9, 1989Aug 7, 1990Schmitt Marvin MVolume-selective water closet flushing system
US5004462 *Mar 5, 1990Apr 2, 1991Mahler Leo MAdjustable water-level flushing apparatus
US5138725 *Jul 6, 1990Aug 18, 1992Frugal Fellows Limited PartnershipTravel limiting flapper valve mounting adapter
US5175895 *Apr 27, 1990Jan 5, 1993Fike Jeffrey RFlapper valve mounting adapter
US5228144 *May 18, 1992Jul 20, 1993Kightlinger Paul EWater saving device for toilets
US5459884 *Dec 23, 1994Oct 24, 1995Wesolowsky; Charles L.Selective toilet flush apparatus
US5819329 *Nov 24, 1995Oct 13, 1998Doney; Dennis W.Variable control air valve and flush gate flapper
US6044500 *Oct 20, 1997Apr 4, 2000Bornholms Plastvarefabrik ApsFlushing cistern
US20100275360 *Nov 4, 2010Hammons Paul RFlush controller
WO1981000270A1 *Jul 13, 1979Feb 5, 1981H GoldmanVariable control for toilet flush tanks
WO1981000734A1 *Sep 2, 1980Mar 19, 1981H GoldmanVariable volume control for toilet flush tanks
WO1995002738A1 *Jul 14, 1994Jan 26, 1995Bornholms Plastvarefabrik ApsA flushing cistern
U.S. Classification4/324, 4/404
International ClassificationE03D1/14, E03D1/02
Cooperative ClassificationE03D1/142
European ClassificationE03D1/14D