US 2900029 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
H. HERKIMER Aug. 18, 1959 DRY PIPE CLAPPER VALVES FOR AUTOMATIC SPRINKLER SYSTEMS Filed June -17, 1957 2 Sheets-Sheet l m m .M ?.P m 4 y! 1 wL A Z J .1 Z
Aug. 18, 1959 H. HERKlMER 2,900,029
DRY P IPE CLAPPER VALVES FOR AUTOMATIC SPRINKLER SYSTEMS Filed June 17, 1957 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 4 1 IN VEN TOR. -q z hpow flier/Me BY 45244;, Q; @z
DRY PIPE CLAPPER VALVES FOR, AUTOMATIC SPRINKLER SYSTEMS Harold Herkimer, New York, N.Y., assignor to The Raisler Corporation, New York, N.Y., a corporation of New York Application June 17, 1957, Serial No. 666,070
3 Claims. (Cl. 16922) This invention relates to dry pipe clapper valves for automatic sprinkler systems.
As is well known, when a dry sprinkler line is employed in an automatic sprinkler system a dry pipe clapper valve is interposed between said line and the source of water under pressure. Ordinarily, the pressure of the air on the dry side of the clapper over-balances the pressure of the water on the reverse side of the clapper so that the valve remains closed and the sprinkler line has only air in it and no water. If the air pressure drops sufliciently, however, the valve opens and water enters the sprinkler line. When the valve and system are operating properly, the air pressure will drop sufficiently to cause the valve to open only when a sprinkler head has opened because of fire.
However, air pressure in the sprinkler line may, of course, drop during testing of the system or because of a leak therein, or because of malfunctioning of the air compressor or a momentary increase in water pressure. When this occurs to a sufficient extent to cause a dry pipe clapper valve to open even partially, for but an instant, it is required that the valve remain open even though thereafter normal conditions are reestablished immediately. Moreover, the valve must be resettable manually after the cause for its opening has been ascertained.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a dry pipe clapper valve including a new and improved means for maintaining the same open.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a dry pipe clapper valve of the character described having new and improved means of access to the parts thereof for cleaning and repair.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a dry pipe clapper valve which is simple in construction, dependable in action and which will not jam.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a dry pipe clapper valve which is durable, long lasting, and inexpensive to manufacture and maintain.
Other objects of my invention in part will be obvious and in part will be pointed out hereinafter.
My invention accordingly consists in the features of construction, combinations of elements and arrangements of parts which will be exemplified in the device hereinafter described and of which the scope of application will be indicated in the appended claims.
In the accompanying drawings, in which are shown various possible embodiments of my invention,
Fig. 1 is a longitudinal central sectional view of a dry pipe clapper valve embodying the instant invention;
Fig. 2 is a fragmentary side view of the dry pipe clapper valve shown in Fig. l with the access plate removed;
Fig. 3 is a reduced bottom view of the clapper employed in the valve;
Fig. 4 is an exploded view of a detail of part of the mounting means for the clapper;
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary sectional view taken substantially along the line 55 of Fig. 2; and
Fig. 6 is a view similar to Fig. 5 but with a part of the clapper shown in a fully open position.
Referring now in detail to the drawings, the reference numeral 10 denotes a dry pipe clapper valve constructed in accordance with the present invention. Said valve includes a casing 12 fabricated, for example, from a strong rigid metal such as cast bronze. The casing is divided by a horizontally disposed clapper 14 into two chambers, i.e. an upper or air chamber 16 and a lower or water chamber 18. The top of the casing includes a flat outwardly extending flange 20 to which a registered flange 22 of an air pipe 24 leading to the sprinkler lines is air-tightly joined as by bolts 26. The bottom of the casing is provided with a flat outwardly extending flange 28 which is water-tightly joined to a registeredv flange 30 of a water pipe 32.
The clapper is mounted over the lower chamber for movement between a closed position as shown in Fig. 1 in which there is no passage of water or air between the two chambers and various open positions. This mounting will be described in detail hereinafter. The clapper is maintained in closed position when the valve is in operation by keeping the pressure in the air chamber at a suflicient level such that the pressure on the top of the clapper exceeds the pressure on its bottom. As is conventional, the air pressure is exerted over a greater area than is the water pressure, so the former need not be as high as the latter to produce the desired result. The air pressure is maintained constant as by a pump (not shown), and the water pressure will be that of the sprinkler water system.
The casing has a large access opening 34 at the side thereof to provide entry to the interior of the casing for cleaning and repairs. An access plate 36 fabricated, for example, from a heavy metal such as cast iron, is employed to close said opening, said plate being removably secured against a flat seat 38 surrounding the opening by means of bolts 40 and nuts 42 projecting-through slots and openings in the plate and seat. A gasket 46 is disposed between the seat and plate so that the closure is hermetic, and a handle 48 is provided on the outside of the access plate to facilitate manipulation thereof.
As is conventional, the dry pipe clapper valve may be used with an accelerator (not shown), the connection between the accelerator and the intermediate air chamber 50 being given the number 52.
The casing includes a conventional annular inner seat- 54 comprising the top of the lower chamber and projecting upwardly a short distance into the upper chamber. An annular peripheral step 56 is formed at the inner edge of said seat, and a sealing ring 58 is disposed on said step. The ring has a greater height than the step, so that the top of the former projects above the step.
The clapper itself is conventional, constituting a heavy disc fabricated, for example, from bronze. Said clapper has a diameter substantially greater than that of the ring 58; it includes a squat downwardly projecting annular broad rib 60 .spaced inwardly from its periphery and adapted to engage the ring 58 in the closed position of the clapper. Due to the weight of the disc, the rib 60 and sealing ring 58 provide a water-tight seal between the air chambers and the water chamber when the clapper is in closed position.
A thin sealing washer 62 fabricated from an elastomeric material such as neoprene, is held against the undersurface of the clapper near the periphery thereof by a clamping ring 64, said sealing washer projecting radially beyond said clapper. Headed bolts 66 passing through openings in the clamping ring and received in tapped openings in the clapper are employed to tightly hold the sealing washer, clamping ring and clapper together. Said'openings do not extend through the clapper completely, so
same (see Fig. :4).
3 there can be no leakage of water.
The sealing washer 62 abuts the flat top surface of an annular ring 70 fabricated, for example, from bronze and secured in the casing around the periphery of the intermediate airI-chamber'StPQ Said sealing washer andtop'surface provide an airtight seal between theupper aircham-v her and the intermediate air chamber when the clapper is inclosed position.
A tapped drainopening 71 locatedat a low point in the upper air chamber adjacent the bottom of the access opening normally is closed by a drain plug 72.
Pursuant to my invention, the clapper is mounted in the casing by two. swing wrists '76 that are operatively associated with gravity hinge clutch brackets 78 secured in the casing. As can. be seen in Figs. 1-3, the wrists "7.6 are parallel to each other and integrallyextend from the top of the clapper toward the access opening, in any conventional manner. Said wrists include downwardly projecting fingers '80. Each finger is provided with a shallow channel 82 in the side thereof facing "away from the other finger, and a transverse through opening 84 is formed in each finger and extends into the channel.
To accomplish the objects of the inventioneach swing wrist is connected to its associated bracket by a dogin the Wrist cooperating with an irregular slot in the bracket. Saiddog must have at least two dimensions, one of which is difierent from the other. The slot must have a first portion in which the dog is freely rotatable and a second portion which will receive a substantial part of the dog, but cannot rotatably accommodate the largest dimension thereof in all directions once a substantial portion of the dog has entered. .Phr-ased differently, the second portion of the slot in the bracket is shapedto catch and hold the dog against rotation once the dog has entered the same.
More specifically, each wrist is connected to its asssociated clutch bracket by a rectangular trunnion 86 one end of which is received in the channel of the wrist. The trunnions are thick enough .so that they will project out of the channels. Each trunnion has a tapped opening 88 in the side facing the channel.
Each clutch bracket includes an irregularzslot 90 which can best be seen in Figs. and 6. Said slot has a substantially semicircular upper portion 92 and a substantially rectangular lower portion 94 extending downwardly from the rear of the upper portion. The rear wall 906 of the lower portion is provided with steps 98 the roofs 100 of which slant upwardly and frontwardly at progressively greater angles to the horizontal. The slots 90 are of such size that the 'trunnions'canrotate freely in the upper portions thereof and slide freely downwardly in the lower portions.
The clutch brackets are mounted in the casing at the rear thereof by means of T-Ishaped tongues 102 integral with the bottoms thereof, said tongues being received in '-T-'slots 103 in the teasing. The brackets are held 'inplace by bolts 104 theheads of which slide in the slots 103, said bolts being fixed behind the brackets by nuts 105.
The clapper mounting is assembled .as follows: The clutch brackets are inserted into the casing (the access .plate having been removed) and the trunnions are placed in the upper portions '92 of the slots '90. The trunnions are wide enough to extend from side to side of :the bracket and also project from the inner side thereof. The wrists 76 then are secured to these projecting portions of the trunnions by sliding the channels thereof over the The assembly is held together by headed bolts 106 the shafts of which screw into the tapped openings 88 in the associated trunnions '86. Steps 108 are disposed between the 'heads 110 of the boltsand the trunnions. The distance between the remote sides of the even can only -be had by removing the clapper.
the clapper are mounted for rotation about an axis defined by the trunnions.
The above described mounting serves to retain the clapper in any partially opened position because as the clapper opens the trunnions first will rotate within the semicircular portions 92 of the slots and then will slide toward the lower portions 94.01? the slots. As the clapper opens, the rearmost edge 112 of each trunnion moves toward a position in which it is disposed under the roof of the uppermost step 114 in its associated clutch bracket. At this point the force of gravity will cause the trunnions to slide into the stepsrand abutment of the aforesaid edges against the roofs of the steps prevents the trunnions from turning retrogradely back into the upper portions when and if opening pressures are removed The only movement which the trunnions can make, accordingly, is further into the lower portions 94, and if such movement occurs, because of further opening of the clapper, the trunnions will fall into the next step which will hold them there in the same manner as described above.
The foregoing may be seen clearly in Figs. 5 and 6. In Fig. 5 the clapper is closed and the edges 112 of the trunnions have not yet entered'the lower portions and been caught under the roofs of the uppermost steps. The trunnions are within the semicircular portions where they are free to rotate without noticeable dropping as the clapperinitially opens. In Fig. 6-the trunnions are shown fully entered into the lower portions of the slots where they no longer are free to turn even if opening forces are removed.
The trunnions will be retained against rotation in either of the two intermediate positions defined by the steps, depending on how far the clapper opens.
The .location and number of steps in the lower portions of the slots will be governed by the various open positions in which it is desired to retain the clapper open. In other words, if it is desired that the clapper be retained in open position even when it has only opened slightly, the first step of each clutch bracket will be located very high up. On the other hand, if it is desired to have the clapper opened a substantial distance before it is prevented from closing, the first or uppermost step will occur further down in the lower portion of the slot. The number .of steps themselves and the distance between them determine the various positions at which the clapper can be held.
Theabove described mounting not only has the advantage of eliminating moving latches for retaining the clapper in any of a number of predetermined open positions, but permits easy access to and removal of the clapper for repair and cleaning purposes. Thus, the whole mounting-may beremoved simply by removing the access plate .and nuts and sliding the clutch brackets out of their T-.slots. A simpler way of-disassembling the mounting, :however, :is to remove the headed bolts 10.6 and slide the mounting arms off the trunnions. In either way the clapper can be removed .and :any necessary .adjustments or repairs :to it can be made. The ease of disassembly is, of course, important since everything below the clapper, and the lower surface of the clapper itself, cannot :be reached in any other way than by removing the clapper. It might be necessary, for example, to adjust the sealing washer .62; access to the bolts..66, how- Likewise, ease of :assembly and disassembly .is important be- .cause dry pipe clapper :valves have ,to be tested and manually reset frequently .in the course .of keeping any sprinkler system inefficient and-safe operating condition.
It thus will be-seen that ILhave provideddr-y-pipeelapper valves for automatic sprinkler systems whichachieve the various objects of my invention and are well adapted to meet the conditions of practical use.
As various possible embodiments .might be made of the above invention and as various changes imightbeanade in the embodiment set forth, it is to .be understood that all matter herein described or shown in the accompanying drawings is to be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
, Having thus described my invention, I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent:
1. In a dry pipe clapper valve comprising a clapper disposed in a casing having an air chamber and a water chamber, combined locking and mounting means for said clapper, said means mounting said clapper for rotatable movement between an open position and a closed position in which it blocks communication between the air and Water chambers, said means also manually resettably locking the clapper in open position, said means comprising a mounting element extending away from and movable with the clapper, a gravity hinge clutch bracket located on the casing, said bracket having an opening including a lateral upper branch running into a vertically elongated vertical branch that is rearwardly eccentrically disposed With respect to the lateral upper branch, the
bottom edge of the upper branch meeting the front edge of the vertical branch at a corner, and a non-circular trunnion non-rotatably secured to the mounting element and located in said opening, said trunnion resting on the bottom edge of the lateral branch in closed position of the clapper and sliding around said corner as the clapper starts to turn away from closed position so that said trunnion will shift into said vertical branch as the clapper opens.
2. A clapper locking and mounting means as set forth 6 in claim 1 wherein the non-circular member is rectangular and wherein the back wall of the vertically elongated vertical branch includes at least one step so that as the clapper moves toward open position the rectangular element will fall into said step before it reaches the bottom of the vertical branch.
3. A clapper locking and mounting means as set forth in claim 1 wherein the non-circular member is rectangular and wherein the back wall of the vertically elongated vertical branch includes a plurality of steps at least some of which have roofs slanting upwardly and frontwardly at progressively greater angles to the horizontal in downward progression so that as the clapper moves toward open position the rectangular element will fall into progressively lower steps before it reaches the bottom of the vertical branch.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 982,719 Hewitt Jan. 24, 1911 1,144,849 Kingberry et al. June 29, 1915 1,505,192 Gervais Aug. 19, 1924 1,599,653 Cranston Sept. 14, 1926 1,911,107 Carter May 23, 1933 2,032,257 Carmichael Feb. 25, 1936 FOREIGN PATENTS 212,460 Great Britain Mar. 13, 1924