US 2897330 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Filed Oct. 22, 1957 J. P. HOPKINS 2,897,330
UTILITIES ISLAND FOR KITCHENS 2 Sheets-Sheet l JOHN P. HOPKINS INVENTOR.
y 1959 J. P. HOPKINS UTILITIES ISLAND FOR KITCHENS 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Oct. 22, 1957 JOHN F! HOPKINS INVENTOR. BY M v.7
United States Patent UTILITIES ISLAND FOR KITCHENS John P. Hopkins, Mercer Island, Wash.
Application October 22, 1957, Serial No. 691,771
1 Claim. (Cl. 219-419) Ths present equipment relates to the general art of kitchen utility units and more particularly to a circular island which provides a stove unit which is revolvably supported, at substantially table height, by a substantially round base member which is adapted to house one or more utility units as a dish washer, oven and where sewer connections are adequate also a garbage disposal and sink. Disposed concentrically with the center of the revolvable stove top is a demountable segmental table, the individual segments being disposed to extend outwardly from the central base member.
Present day housing conditions make it very desirable to provide means for using floor space to a maximum and this normally means a reduction of the enclosing walls of a kitchen to the extent that they are limited and so often provide inadequate wall space for all of the various cupboards, refrigerators, freezers and other units which are now deemed to be so necessary in a modern home. This combination unit which is designed to set out in the floor well removed from any wall makes it possible to build kitchens in the economical substantially square form and to provide in an island unit a number of utilities as well as eating space so that an overall gain in the use of available space can be effected and all for the convenience and reduced first cost to the home owner.
The principal object of this present invention therefore is to provide in a single unit designed to stand alone without the necessity of utilizing any wall space, a plurality of the utility units of a kitchen so that the wall space itself may be put to other needed uses.
A further object of this present invention is to provide a cooking stove top in a form that makes it possible for several persons to work at the stove at the same time, each within their own sector so they will not interfere with each other.
A further object of this invention is to provide a base member which may house typical utility units such as dishwashers, ovens, garbage disposal units, sinks, refrigerator and to use the top surface of this unit for the mounting of a Lazy Susan type electric range.
A further object of this invention is to provide in a combination island unit means whereby a plurality of segmental type dining table units may be provided around the cooking top.
A further object of the invention is to provide means whereby the cooking top may be revolved so as to bring the cooking unit desired in front of the housewife and to provide means so that the revolving of the burner units will not interfere with the continuous flow of electric current thereto.
Further objects, advantages and capabilities will be apparent from the description and disclosure in the drawing, or may be comprehended or are inherent in the device.
In the drawings:
Figure 1 is a perspective view illustrating one embodiment of this present invention with the table and table support means removed therefrom.
Figure 2 is a cross sectional view taken along the line 22 of Figure 1 and showing certain parts of the equipment in vertical sectional view.
Figure 3 is a top plan view of a two contactor pivoted electric brush of which three are employed on the unit to make it possible to revolve the stove top units while the current is being used.
Figure 4 is a fragmentary cross sectional view which is in effect an enlargement of the upper right hand corner of Figure 2.
Figure 5 is a top plan view of the island unit showing the burner cooking top of the stove unit and showing several units of the segmental eating table arrangement employed with this island equipment.
Figure 6 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view similar to Figure 2 but illustrating the employment of a garbage disposal unit and sink arrangement.
Figure 7 illustrates the manner in which the individual and segmental table units are supported from the island central base member.
Throughout the drawings in which like references indicate like parts, numeral 19 designates the outer housing member which also acts as the principal supporting member for the utility island. It is desirable that this member be made of relatively heavy material to the end that it will not be easily dented as by children running toys into it and further it is very desirable that the track-way which supports the revolvable cooking top 12 be adequately supported so that it will turn easily with the minimum of friction and little likelihood of losing its co-ncentricity even after long periods of use.
Secured inside of shell or sheathing 10 and at its upper inside surface is a disc-like member 14 which stitfens the upper edge of sheathing 10 and also provides means for securely anchoring in place any of the various utilities that it may be desirable to house within the confines of sheathing 10. In Figures 1 and 2 there is illustrated, as an example, a conventional type of pull-out dishwasher. This unit is arranged to be pulled out on tracks 18 which support a plurality of rollers 20 which in turn are secured to unit 16 and support the same for movement. Any of the various accepted forms of dishwashers, for instance the impeller type 22 having its external and protected motor 24 may be employed. In other circumstances it may be desirable to employ a garbage disposal unit having the driven ring type knife 30 which is driven from electric motor 32 through suitable right angle gearing of the type and a flushing spray 31; substantially as illustrated in Figure 6. It will be apparent, it is believed that most any form of utility might be employed in addition to a stove or dishwasher. It might also include such items as a refrigerator, oven, tab-1e height hot water tank and the like.
Referring to Figure 4 it is to be noted that a plurality of anti-friction rollers 40 are provided. These are disposed at intervals around the periphery of the island and the bearing support members 42 are secured near the upper margin of sheathing 10 at a point where it is further reinforced by the top disc member 14. Rollers 40 are preferably made from or at least faced with plastic to insure that they will be quiet in operation. The plurality of rollers 40 revolvably support the stove top 12. This member is disc-like in form and has a margin which is probably best illustrated in Figure 4 and consists of a downwardly extending portion 44 followed by an inwardly extending portion 46. This arrangement forms a very substantial margin for the table top. A plurality of angle brackets 50 are employed largely from the standpoint of having a strong member available to take care of any unusual downward or side thrust that may be placed upon the revolving top 12. Normally, however, there should be plenty of clearance so that the inwardly disposed margin 46 will not bear on bracket 50 and to the same end there should be clearance at 52 so that the central guide pin 54 may center the table top normally and rollers 40 support it and when these are so used then top 12 will move with the minimum friction or noise.
Disposed substantially equi-distant around the outer margin of top 12 are a plurality of inset wells 56. These wells provide support for the electric heating elements 58 which are disposed in the bottom of the wells. A marginal rim is provided at 60 for each of the element units. It is proven desirable to have these various elements set down below the surface of top 12, so that any cooking utensils that may be placed on them will be carried around without danger of them sliding off the elements when top 12 is revolved. Each of the cooking elements 58 is provided with its own multi-heat switch as 62, preferably between the elements substantially as illustrated in Figures 1 and 5. This places them in a convenient position for use and observation and of course these units must travel around as top 12 is revolved Lazy Susan fashion. Axially disposed with respect to top 12 is a central unit made very similarly to containers 56. This is shown at 68 and is provided with a suitable cover arrangement 68 in which are preferably disposed a number of plug-in receptacles 70 so additional cooking units and particularly thermostatic pans, toasters and the like may be employed in conjunction with the electrical elements 58.
In order that top 12 can be revolved while the various cooking elements are in use, a current distributor capable of distributing the heavy current for these electrical units is employed. This unit follows more or less conventional design and consists of a central unit 74 having three conductor rings 75, 76 and 77. These rings are connected to the three wires forming the conventional 220 volts electrical cooking circuit. In this case member 74 is stationary and suitably positioned to be carried around member 74 are the contact members 80. These brush holders are preferably pivoted at one point as at 82 and carry two brushes 84 and 85. These brushes contact one of the conductor rings as 75, 76 or 77 so that the current which is led to the centrally disposed fixed member 74 may through this unit, be made available to the top cooking units 58 and the plug-in outlets 70'. The actual wiring required has not been illustrated as this is quite common and well-known to anyone who follows electrical work of this order.
In order to adapt this island arrangement to serve to a maximum, provision is made so that segmental eating table arrangements 86 may be employed. These are preferably dished at 87 to accept a plate and at a couple of points 88 to hold a glass or a cup. The table elements may be made of any suitable material with preference being given to molded plastic material or to molded plywood. One satisfactory means for supporting the table units in operational position is to employ a ringlike support rail 90 preferably made from pipe which is adequately supported from sheathing by the triangular bracket member 92. The inner or small end of table 86 is engaged preferably by the channel member 94. This arrangement takes strain either upwardly or downwardly. To insure that table member 86 will be retained within the channel member 94 the side portions of the table as 95 are notched at 96 so as to engage pipe 90 at each of the side margins of the table member. This holds the table units well in place while at the same time permitting any desired number of these units to be employed. It is to be understood that rail 90 and channel 94 are both secured to the fixed sheathing 10 and do not revolve. It has been found desirable to have the table units removable so that two or more of these members may be removed to permit the housewife to get close enough to the various burners so she can make fullest convenient use of them. Experience seems to indicate that it is best not to have members 86 too wide and that in order to space them adequately filler members as 97 may be employed. Considering the fact that the side margins of members 86 and 97 diverse radial to center 54 the present arrangement gives wide latitude of the equipment and it is desired to point out that to get maximum use of equipment of this order itv must be flexible so that it can be made to serve the particular circumstances met in a particular home.
It is believed that it will be clearly apparent from the above description and the disclosure in the drawings that the invention comprehends a novel construction of utilities island for kitchens.
Having thus disclosed the invention, I claim:
A utilities island for kitchens, comprising: a substantially cylindrical base member of work table height; an outer base housing member formed of substantial sheet material and forming the principal support for said island; a concentrical top for said island disposed on roller means for revolution in Lazy Susan fashion; a plurality of heating elements disposed, at spaced intervals, in recesses supported from said top, with the top cooking 1 surfaces disposed below said top to provide retaining means for vessels disposed upon said elements when the top is revolved; a plurality of control means one for each heating element, secured to said top adjacent the heating element it serves; peripheral stiffening means for said top; a plurality of female plug-in electrical connectors disposed on a plate secured to and coaxially disposed with respect to said top; and means for supplying heating energy to said heating elements; a plurality of dining table segments detachably secured, below the level of said island top, to the outer housing member at normal using height; said outer base housing having a concentrically disposed rail around its upper periphery and spaced away from the said housing, a plurality of rail supporting brackets secured to said housing, one at each segmental eating table, the upper end of said bracket having an outward, horizontal overhanging channel adapted to engage the inner end of said table segments and each of said table segments having a notch on the lower portion of said segment adapted to engage said rail in a manner to coact with said channel to secure said segment in its using position.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 791,708 Matcovitch June 6, 1905 1,120,758 Stirn Dec. 15, 1914 1,158,475 Fox Nov. 2, 1915 1,763,272 Staege June 10, 1930 2,061,637 Schulz Nov. 24, 1936 2,261,514 Dunigan Nov. 4, 1941 2,309,513 Kramer Jan. 26, 1943 2,771,536 Page Nov. 20, 1956