US 2996745 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Aug. 22, 1961 w. A. BALLINGER SPRING LOADED POCKET TYPE MOP ASSEMBLY Filed Nov. 19, 1958 WALLA CE A. BALL M/G Ek ATTORNEY United States Patent 2,996,745 SPRING LOADED POCKET TYPE MOP ASSEMBLY Wallace A. Ballinger, 8 Sycamore Road, Orinda, Calif. Filed Nov. 19, 1958, Ser. No. 775,009 4 Claims. (Cl. 15-229) This invention relates to improvements in mops. More particularly, it relates to an improved mophead holder and an improved mophead of the pocket type.
Much of the total volume of mops in use today is involved in janitorial service organizations contracting for the maintenance of cleanliness in large buildings. The maintenance work of these organizations is carried out mainly by unskilled labor, and therefore the equipment, including mops, must be relatively simple in design and operation. The preferred type of mop for such duties has a washable, interchangeable mophead that is detachable from the holder and handle. One of the principal problems in designing mops of this type is how to obtian quick and easy installation and removal of the mophead from the holder, while permitting a secure, snug fit of the mophead on the holder. This procedure must not be lengthy, for a small saving in time and labor for each mop means a very large saving in the overall cost picture, especially where a large stafif is employed.
Another important factor in mop design is that of efficiency in operation; that is, how quickly and thoroughly will a mop clean, polish, etc., a given area. This involves not only the mechanism by which the mop is urged over the surface, but also the style of mophead. It is readily apparent that the area of the mop effectively held in contact with the floor determines the area cleaned in a given length of time; to put it another way, the greater the mops cleaning area, the less time it will take to cover a given area. A mop with a maximum amount of space devoted to cleaning surface is therefore highly desirable.
Thewide variety of uses to which mops are put, such as washing, drying, Waxing, polishing, and dusting, imparts the need for a mop sufficiently versatile in its performance to serve all these functions. 'It is not economical to purchase an individual, complete mop for each use, and therefore the field is open to a mechanism which will, at a reasonable cost, serve for several jobs.
The economic need is not met by multi-use mops, composed of a great many individual parts and therefore involving a high production cost or requiring too high a degree of mechanical ability to operate them, or by mops which are prone to break down after an all-tooshort period of use. What has been needed is an inexpensive mop with a minimum number of parts, which is very simple to operate and has a long life span.
Furthermore, the mophead should be washable, and to lend itself readily to laundering the mophead should be free of metal parts, while still being readily replaceable and removable on the mophandle.
Many attempts have been made to overcome the above problems, with none as yet being fully successful. Mops with large cleaning surface areas have tended to be bulky and unwieldy. In other mops the cleaning surface has lain only around the edge of the mophead. Still other mops have been composed of an excessive number of parts and have tended to malfunction after relatively short periods of use. Moreover, prior art multipurpose mops have been both costly in construction and costly to purchase. Mops of the removable-mophead type have heretofore been either. complicated in structure, inefficient in the area cleaned in a given time, diffic'ult to handle both in the mopping operation and in x CE" 2 the changing of the mopheads, or short-lived and therefore costly.
The present invention solves the foregoing problems by providing a relatively simple mop of the removablemophead type wherein the mophead is quickly and easily installed and removed and requires minimum mechanical ability to operate.
Another feature of the instant invention is the provision of a highly efficient mop, in which a maximum amount of its surface is used in cleaning, and yet retaining a mechanism which is easily and skillfully handled by the operator.
The invention further provides the user with a mop which is highly suitable for a great variety of uses, including washing, drying, waxing, polishing, dusting and others. Therefore, the ultimate in practicality for the minimum of investment is achieved by using the one mop of the present invention to do a number of jobs.
Another feature of the present invention is that a very small number of individual parts are involved in the entire mop unit, the parts being simple and sturdy in structure and combined in a new and unusual man ner with a resulting comparatively low cost of manufacture and great length of useful service.
The laundering problem is met and overcome by the present invention, which involves a mophead which is easily and quickly removable from the holder and which can be laundered in any conventional washing machine without fear of damage either to the machine or the mophead.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will appear from the following description of a preferred embodiment thereof.
In the drawings:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the lower portion of a mop embodying the principles of the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a View in side elevation of the mophead holder of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a top plan View of the mophead holder of FIG. 1. The holder is shown in solid lines in its retracted position and in broken lines in the expanded position;
FIG. 4 is a perspective View of the lower portion of the mop of FIG. 1, showing the holder in a retracted position ready for removal from or immediately after insertion in two pockets of the mophead; and
FIG. 5 is a bottom view of the mop showing the large surface area of the mophead devoted to mopping.
FIG. 1 shows the lower portion of a mop of the present invention, with a handle 10, most of which is broken off to conserve space, a mophead holder 11, and a mophead 12. As shown in the drawings, the mophead or cleaning portion 12 may comprise an tall fabric assembly of cotton string 13 completely covering the bottom surface of and supported by a fabric backing 14. Pockets 15, 16, and 17 are stitched to the backing 14-. The mophead holder 11 is insertable into the pockets 15, 16, and 17 of the mophead '12 for using the mop and is removable therefrom when the mophead 12 is to be washed or when another mophead is to be used.
The holder 11 of this invention includes a pair of fiat plates 18 and 19 pivotally linked together, as by a rivet 20. The plates 18 and 19 may be made of aluminum, steel, or other hard, strong metal and are of a generally triangular shape with rounded corners, with front ends or apices 18 and 19" and bases 21 and 22. The plate 13 is mounted partially on top of the plate 19 and the two are secured together by the rivet 20 (see FIGS. 2 "and 3) located near the fronts or apices of the plates. The rivet 20 acts as a pivot around which the plates 18, 19 may be rotated relative to each other, permitting lateral expansion or retraction of the rear portion of the mophead holder 11 by divergence or convergence of the plate 3 bases 21 and 22 (see FIG. 3). This structure makes installation and removal of the mophead easy and simultaneously increases or decreases the surface area of the mophead 12 backed up by the holder 11.
In order to aid the user in expanding the mophead holder 11, a spring 23 is mounted on the top of the plates 18 and 19 and its ends secured by tabs 24 and 25 punched out of and stepped out parallel to the top plate 18 and the bottom plate 19, respectively, the outer edges of the tabs 24 and 25 remaining attached to the plates 18 and 19. The tabs 24 and 25 thus entrap and hold the spring ends. The spring 23 is coiled once around the pivot 20, thereby normally urging the plates 18 and 19 outwardly in the holder-expanding direction. The spring 23 aids in installing the mophead holder 11 by expanding the plates 18 and 19 to a snug position in the mophead pockets 15, 16, and 17. Furthermore, it is now seen that rivet 20 serves not only as a pivot but also as an anchor for the spring 23, thereby having a dual purpose and eliminating one element.
Since a constant pressure is being exerted by the spring 23, and in view of the fact that too strong a pressure on the mophead pockets will cause them to stretch, tear, and generally lose their shape and utility, it is desirable that means be provided for limiting expansion of the holder 11 to a predetermined and adjustable amount. This is accomplished by a slot 26 in the top plate 18, through which protrudes a bolt 27 anchored to the bottom plate 19. A washer 28 and wing-nut 29 are placed over the bolt 27, whereby tightening the wing-nut 29 the plates 18 and 19 may be securely held in a wide range of positrons.
Because of the many different uses to which the present invention may be placed and the corresponding number of intricate places to be reached with the mop, as well as the many different sizes of individuals who will use the mop, a means for attaching the handle to the holder which will enable easy operation of the mop in all situations is a highly desirable feature. This has been accomplished by the use of a universal type joint which gives free rotation both from front to back and side to side. The universal joint of the instant invention is simple and inexpensive, yet strong and smooth in operation. Referring again to the drawings, this joint is mounted on tabs 30 and 31 punched out the plate 18 and extending up perpendicularly from the plate 18 at about the center thereof. A pivot 32, which may be a rivet, passes through the tabs 30 and 31; a link 33 is rotatable around the pivot 32 and has link ears 33A and 33B extending up therefrom and reinforced by a spacer washer 34-. A tapered generally cylindrical handle receptacle 37 comprises two identical halves 38 and 39 secured together and having extensions providing a yoke 36 with yoke ears 36A and 3613. The yoke ears 36A and 36B are rotatably joined to the link ears 33A and 33B by a pivot pin 35, which passes successively through the yoke ear 315A, the link ear 33A, the spacer washer 34, the link ear 33B, and the yoke ear 36B. The receptacle 37 has holes 40 and 41, respectively, to receive a nail for securing the mop handle 10 in the receptacle.
From the foregoing description of the elements making up the connection of the mop handle to the mophead holder, it is apparent that in the universal joint the pivot affords a complete 180 rotation from side to side relative to a front-back axis of the holder 11, the pivot 32 enabling the handle 10 to be rotated for 180 along the front-back axis. Since this type of coupling enables the operator to easily and effectively mop in any position, a minimum amount of effort is required to clean a given area. It is further pointed out that a minimum number of simple, sturdy parts are involved in the universal joint, thereby keeping the cost of manufacture low and providing a device capable of long and satisfactory service.
The flat design of the plates 18 and 19 provides the distinct advantage of having a maximum area, relative to the size of the mop, devoted to mopping surface. This feature gives far superior results over other designs wherein, for instance, only the periphery of the area prescribed by the mophead holder is mopping surface. As is evident from the drawings, the entire bottom surface of the mophead 12 is covered with the cotton strings 13 and, by virtue of the pressure applied to the backing fabric 14 at all points by the plates 18 and 19, all the strings 13 are devoted to mopping. With so much more mopping area, the length of time it takes to mop a given area is greatly reduced.
The mophead 12 is so constructed that, by quick and easy maneuvering of the holder, the mop is assembled. The fabric backing 14, as Well as the pockets 15, 16, and 17, are constructed of a strong and durable canvas material, with the pockets 15, 16, and 17 joined to the backing 14. This is done by placing the pockets 16 and 17 on top of the backing 14 along opposite sides thereof, placing pocket 15 on top of the front of backing 14, and slightly overlapping the pockets 16 and 17, then running stitches around the edge of the backing 14. By this manner a mophead of greater wearing quality, devoid of cumbersome metal attachments, ties, lops, etc., which tend to break or tear off in use and especially in laundering, is obtained.
The operation of the subject of this invention is as follows: the mop handle '10 is inserted in the receptacle 37 and the mophead holding plates 18 and 19 are retracted into the closed position (illustrated in FIG. 4) by loosening the wing-nut 29 and moving the bases 21, 22 of the plates 18 and 19 together. The front or toe of the holder 11 is then inserted into the front or toe pocket 15 of the mophead 12 and the side 18 of the holder is inserted in the corresponding side pocket 16. The wing-nut 29 is thereupon loosened, permitting the bases 21 and 22 of the plates 18 and 19 to rotate outwardly around the pivot 20 'by virtue of the action of the spring 23. As the bases 21 and 22 rotate, the plate 19 of the holder is guided into the pocket 17 of the mophead and when a snug fit is obtained the wing-nut 29 is tightened to prevent any further movement of the plates 18 and 19. It is here pointed out that the combination of the slot 26, the bolt 27, the washer 28, and the wing-nut 29 serves at least two purposes; one of restricting the tension on the mophead pockets, thereby reducing their tendency to stretch out of shape, and also one of permitting the mophead holder to be adjusted to a wide range of mophead sizes. To remove the mophead from the holder, the wing-nut 29 is loosened and the plates 18 and 19 compressed, allowing the mophead 12 to be removed with a maximum of speed and a minimum of effort.
It can easily be seen that this assembled mop has many distinct advantages over the prior art structures. Not only is a much greater effective mopping area obtained by the use of the fiat plates 18 and 19, but the unification of these plates via a universal joint type connection to the mop stick 10 enables the operator to more easily, quickly, and effectively mop a given area. Furthermore, by virtue of the particular method of tensioning the plates and securing them to each other, a very simple and quick procedure of installing and removing the mophead is achieved. The overall result is that of increased efiiciency in the mopping operation, reduced labor cost, lower mop purchase price, and a longer lasting and therefore cheaper mop.
To those skilled in the art to which this invention relates, many changes in construction and widely differing embodiments and applications of the invention will suggest themselves without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. The disclosures and the description herein are purely illustrative and are not intended to be in any sense limiting.
1. A dust mop, including in combination a pair of flat plates, each lying completely in a single plane and each having a wide end and a narrow end, one plate lying on top of the other, said plates being pivotally secured together adjacent said narrow end, a wire type spring positioned on top of said plates and anchored to the pivot point of said plates, with one end secured to one plate and the other end to the other plate and normally urging the overlying wide ends of said plates to diverge from each other, means 'for restricting the divergence of said wide ends, a mophead with pockets for receiving said plates, and means for securing a handle to one of said plates.
2. The mop of claim 1 wherein the spring ends are secured to the plates by engaging bent up tabs integral with said plates.
3. A dust mop, including in combination a handle; a mophead holder having a universal joint type coupling attached to said handle and comprising two generally triangular fiat plates each having rounded corners, an apex end, and a base end, and lying one on top of the other, pivot means securing said plates together at said apex ends, a straight wire spring lying on top of said plates and anchored to said pivot means with one end secured to each plate between said pivot means and said base end to urge said base ends normally to diverge, said upper plate having a closed slot adjacent its base end, a threaded stud secured to the lower plate projecting upwardly through said slot, means threaded on said stud for tightening said plates together to prevent movement around the pivot point; and a triangular-shaped mophead with pockets on the top along two sides and on the angle formed thereby and cotton-string-like mopping material completely covering the bottom and supported by said plates over the full bottom area.
4. A dust mop holder for a triangular-shaped mophead comprising: a pair of flat, overlapping, upper and lower plates, each 'with a wide and a narrow end, secured together by a solitary pivot positioned near the narrow end of the plates, said upper plate having an arcuate closed slot adjacent its wide end; two tabs, one punched out of each plate and protruding upwardly and then extending toward each other from opposite sides of the two plates, one tab on each plate; a straight wire spring extending from one tab up to and once around the pivot and thence to the other tab for applying pressure in an outward direction to enlarge the surface area covered by the mophead holder; a bolt attached to the bottom plate and projecting through said slot; a washer and an adjustable wing-nut respectively positioned on the bolt and abutting the top surface of the upper plate so that tightening of the said wing-nut will prevent rotation of the two plates around the pivot; two flat upstanding parallel tabs punched out of and still connected to the upper plate and positioned in the center of the area covered by the mophead holder when in a completely expanded position; a pivot extending from one tab to the other; a link rotatably mounted on the pivot with link ears extending outward therefrom; a yoke terminating in a cylindrical socket for receiving a handle and with ears thereof compressed against the outside of the link ears and a pivot passing through all four ears thereby affording a universal joint connection between the mop handle and the holder.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,007,836 Allison Nov. 7, 1911 1,162,723 Johnson Nov. 30, 1915 1,249,895 Brown Dec. 11, 1917 1,362,900 Severns Dec. 21, 1920 1,922,621 Hertzberg Aug. 15, 1933 2,252,407 Preisser Aug. 12, 1941 2,691,185 Jones Oct. 12, 1954 2,943,892 Hessler et a1. July 5, 1960