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Publication numberUS3043116 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 10, 1962
Filing dateJul 26, 1961
Priority dateJul 26, 1961
Publication numberUS 3043116 A, US 3043116A, US-A-3043116, US3043116 A, US3043116A
InventorsLeslie T Fuller
Original AssigneeLeslie T Fuller
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
US 3043116 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

July 10, 1962 L. T. FULLER 3,043,116

REFRIGERATOR Filed July 26, 1961 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 r i I 4 4 11 7'7 J 2 W 4; f? I m" i INVENTOR. L s re' rfafn- ATTORN Ers;

July 10, 1962 T. FULLER 3,043,116

REFRIGERATOR Filed July 26, 1961 2 Sheets-Sheet z INVENTOR.


3,043,116 Patented July 10, 1952 3,043,116 REFRIGERATOR Leslie T. Fuller, Rte. 1, Hermleigh, Tex. Filed July 26, 1961, Ser. No. 126,934 1 Claim. (Cl. 62-244) The present invention relates to a refrigerator, and more particularly to a refrigerator for use with a vehicle such as an automobile.

An object of the present invention is to provide a refrigerator which consists of a unit that is adapted to be arranged in a convenient location such as in an automobile or other vehicle whereby cool air that is generated by a vehicle air conditioner can be used for maintaining the interior of the refrigerator of the present invention at a desired cool temperature in order to permit various types of articles such as foodstuffs, beverages or the like to be maintained cool until the same are to be consumed or utilized.

Another object is to provide a refrigerator for a car, truck or the like, and wherein the refrigerator is adapted to be used in conjunction with a conventional vehicle air conditioner, the refrigerator including a flexible tube or duct that is adapted to be connected to any source of supply of cool air such as the vehicle air conditioner whereby the cool air can be conveyed to the interior of the refrigerator or housing so that foods, drinks or the like can be maintained at a desired low temperature, and wherein the present invention also includes adjustable leg assemblies which permit the unit to be readily supported or mounted in difierent locations such as in the front portion of a vehicle, and wherein there is provided louvers for insuring that the cold air flowing through the refrigerator will be directed into the desired or proper manner or direction.

Further objects and advantages are to provide improved elements and arrangements thereof in a device of the character described that is economical to produce, durable in form, and condusive to the most economical use of materials and uniformity of members formed therefrom.

Still further objects and advantages will become apparent in the subsequent description in the specification.

In the drawings:

FIGURE 1 is a side elevational view of the refrigerator of the present invention, showing the movable section of the top in opened position.

FIGURE 2 is a view taken at right angles to the view shown in FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 3 is an enlarged sectional view taken on the line 3-3 of FIGURE 2.

FIGURE 4 is a top plan view of the refrigerator of the present invention.

FIGURE 5 is a front elevational view illustrating the refrigerator positioned on a vehicle or car floor and showing the humy of the car floor relative to the leg assemblies and showing the relative position of the parts such as the dash board of the vehicle.

FIGURE 6 is a view illustrating a modification and looking at the opposite end from that shown in FIGURE 5, and showing a different use of the refrigerator, as for example showing the refrigerator being used outdoors and showing the adjustable leg assemblies permit the refrigerator to be supported above irregular ground surfaces or the like.

Referring in detail to the drawings, the numeral 10 indicates a refrigerator which is shown to comprise a hollow housing that is indicated generally by the numeral 11, and the housing 11 includes horizontally disposed spaced parallel top and bottom portions 9 and 12, and the housing 11 further includes vertically disposed spaced parallel side wall members 13 and 14' as well as spaced parallel vertically disposed end or front and back wall members 15 and 16. The housing 11 includes inner and outer spaced apart casings 17 and 18 which have insulation 19 therebetween, FIGURE 3. In FIGURE 3 the numeral 29 indicates in broken lines an article being kept cool within the housing 11, and the article 20 maybe a vacuum bottle or the like. Other articles such as the articles 21, 22 and 23 may be conveniently supported in the housing 11 and such articles 21, 22 and 23 may consist of foodstuflis, beverages or the like.

As shown in the drawings the top portion 9 includes a horizontally disposed stationary section 24- as well as a movable hingedly mounted section 25, and the section 25 is hingedly supported as at 26, and the section 25 is adapted to be latched or held in closed position as for example by means of a catch or latch 27, FIGURE 3. The numeral 28 indicates a generally rounded sleeve or rotary element which is rotatably connected to the movable section 25, and the upper portion of the sleeve 28 is inclined as indicated by the numeral 29, and a plurality of spaced parallel slats or louvers 30 are mounted in the upper inclined portion of the rotary element 28, for a purpose to be later described.

Connected to the stationary section 24 of the top portion 9 is a support member 31, and the support member 31 includes a lower portion 32 of increased diameter or size which has a filter 33 contiguous thereto so that air entering the housing 11 will be cleaned and will have any foreign matter removed therefrom before entering the housing. The support member 31 further includes an upper end portion 33 of reduced diameter, and the numeral 34 indicates a flexible tube or conduit which is connected to the end portion 33, and the tube 34 is adapted to be connected to a suitable source of supply of cold or cool air, and for example the tube 34 can be connected to a conventional vehicle air conditioner whereby cool air can be conveyed from such an air conditioner and into the interior of the housing 11 in order to maintain the articles 26, 21, 22 and 23 or the like in a desired cooled atmosphere or temperature.

A fan 35 may be arranged in the lower. portion of the support member 31, and the fan 35 is adapted to be driven by a motor 36 which is adapted to be supported by means of a bracket 37, and the motor 36 may be electrically connected to a suitable source of electrical energy such as the vehicle battery by means of an electrical wire or conductor 38, FIGURE 4.

Certain of the wall members of the housing are adapted to be provided with spaced apart inclined slots 39 which define louvered sections 40, and movable or adjustable doors or closures 41 are mounted for movement into and out of opened and closed relation with respect to the slots or louvered sections of the housing. The closure 41 is adapted to be maintained in its proper aligned position by means of guide members 42, and a knob or handle 43 is provided for manually moving the closure 41.

The numerals 44 indicate horizontally disposed brackets or shelf supports which are suitably afixed within the housing 11, and shelves or trays 45 are adapted to be supported on the brackets 44, and the shelves 45 are adapted to be made of reticulated or wire mesh material in order to insure that the cool air can circulate therethrough with a minimum amount of interference.

The refrigerator of the present invention further includes a plurality of independently adjustable leg assemblies which are each indicated generally by the numeral 46, and each of the leg assemblies 46 include a mounting member 47 that is secured to or formed integral with a lower corner portion of the housing 11. The numeral 48 indicates a leg which is adjustably connected to each mounting member 47, and the legs 48 are vertically disposed and the legs 48 may be held stationary in their adjusted positions by means of screw members or set screws 49. Base pieces 50 are aflixed to the lower ends of the legs'48. In FIGURE the refrigerator is shown in position above the usual hump 51 of a vehicle floor 52 which may form part of a conventional vehicle such as an automobile 53, and the numeral 54 indicates the dashboard of the vehicle.

Referring to FIGURE 6 of 'the drawings there is illustrated a modification wherein the refrigerator is shown being used 'in a difierent environment, and as for example the refrigerator can be used outdoors by hunters, campers or the like, and the numeral 55 in FIGURE 6 indicates a portion of a ground surface which may have an irregular contour and due to the provision of the independently adjustable leg assemblies 46, the refrigerator housing can be leveled by independently adjusting the legs to the proper height or length. The numeral 56 indicates a door or panel which may be hingedly connected to the housing by means of a hinge, 58, and the panel 56 may be supported by holding members such as chains 57 whereby various types of articles such as a glass 59 can be conveniently supported on the member 56 when'the member 56 is in a horizontal position. When the member 56' is not being used or when it is not needed, it can be folded up to a vertical position contiguous 'to thehousing so'that the parts will occupy a minimum amount of space for storage or shipment.

In FIGURE 6 the flexible hose 34 may be omitted.

and the unit may be used for causing air to circulate through the housing in a desired manner to permit the circulating air to help maintain the articles in the housing at a desired temperature or humidity.

As shown in FIGURE 4, the movable top section 25 may be provided with a hand grip 60 which can be cons,0 .a,11e

veniently gripped as for example when the top section 25 is to be swung upwardly on its hinge 26' in order to permit access to the interior of the housing so that articles can be removed or replaced therein.

FIGURES l, 2, 3 and 4 show the refrigerator being supported on a generally flat surface which is indicated by the numeral 61, and such a fiat surface 61 may be a suitable part of a vehicle such as an automobile floor or the like. As shown in'FIGURE 5 the adjustable leg assemblies 46 permit the refrigerator to .be'used over irregular surfaces such as'the. hump shaped portion 51 V of a vehicle floor 52.

It will be seen that with the'parts arranged as shown in the drawings, that various types of articles such as foodstuflfs, beverages, or the like can be conveniently maintained at a desired cool temperature, and for example the refrigerator 10 may be arranged in a suit-able part of a vehicle such as an automobile, and the flexible tube 34 can be connected to the outlet of a conventional vehicle air conditioner. Thus, cold air from the air conditioner will flow through the tube 34 and this air will be filtered by the member 33-so that clean cool air will.

enter the interior of the housing 11 whereby articles such as the articles 20, 21, 22' and 23 can be kept cool for a desired period of time. The air will circulate through the housing and leave through the slots or openings such as the openings 39 and the air can also leave through the element 28. If desired, certain of the closures '41 can be moved downwardly to closed position in order to close off one or more sets of the louvered sections tainers or the like can be supported in various parts of the housing. The articles can be supported on the shelves which are adapted to be made of foraminous material in order to permit air to circulate therethrough so that the most efficient circulation and cooling action can take place. The motor 36 is adapted to be connected to a suitable source of electrical energy 'by means of the wires 38, and the motor 36 is adapted to rotate the fan 85 which-can be used to facilitate the movement of air through the refrigerator.

The element 28 may be rotated so that the inclined portion 29 is at a desired angle so that for example maximum benefit can be taken of wind blowing in a certain direction in. order to use such outside wind to most efiiciently aid in outflow of air from the interior of the housing 11. In certain instances the motor 36 and fan 35 may be omitted. The refrigerator'may be supported on a flat surface such as the flat surface 61 which may 'be part of a vehicle floor or the like. Or, the refrigerator can be supported over a vehicle raised portion or hump 51 as shown in FIGURE 5, or else the unit may be used outdoors on irregular surfaces such as the surface 55 which may be ground surface in the vicinity of a wooded area, lawn or the like. Due to the provision of the leg assemblies 46 which can each be adjusted independently of the other, the housing can be maintained level. To adjust the leg assemblies 46 it is only necessary to unloosen the member such as the screw member 49 and the leg 48 can be moved to a desired position in order to cause the base piece to engage a raised or lowered surface and then the screw member 49 can then be tightened in order to maintain the legs 48 stationary in their adjusted positions.

The arrangement shown'in FIGURE 6 is such that the flexible tube 34' can be omitted so that cool air in the vicinity of a wooded area for example can be circulated through the interior of the housing to help mainso that the air can be caused to circulate through different areas or portions of the refrigerator housing as desired or required. Also, these closures 41 may be moved to a partially open or partially closed position in order to provide a further means for controlling the cooling in the refrigerator. Any suitable types of articles can be supported in the refiigerator housing, and for example a vacuum bottle such as the vacuum bottle 20 containing beverages can be arranged inside the housing, or else foodstuffs, beverages or the like in suitable contain the interior of the housing in a desired temperature or humidity. Or, an elongated flexible tube 34 can be used with the arrangement of FIGURE 6 whereby cool air can be conveyed from a'remotely positioned air conditioner of a vehicle, household air conditioner or the like so that with the refrigerator positioned outdoors the articles therein canbe kept cool. The top of the housing 11 can be used as a convenient support for various articles such as the vacuum bottle 20, as shown in FIG- URE 6. p

While the present invention has been described specifically for use as a refrigerator, it is to be understood that the same can be used for other purposes, as for example the device can be used for maintaining articles warm and in such use, the tube 34 can be connected to a suitable source of warm air such as a heater or the like as for example when the device is being used during winter months or during such times that it is desired to maintain various articles in a heated or warmed conditron. e

The device is adapted to be made compact and of a rugged construction so that it can be conveniently used and transported in -a vehicle or the like, and any suitable material can be used for fabricating the various parts, and such parts can be made in diiferent shapes or contours or sizes as desired or required. I

Due to the provision of the rotary element 28 with the louver-s 30'the'rein and the inclined upper section or portion 29,-the element 28 can be rotated or positioned at a desired location whereby the air can be directed outwardly in any direction desired after it has passed through the box or housing. The section 25 may be raised in order to facilitate the removal or replacement of foodstuffs or other articles from the interior of the housing. The blower or fan 35 can be used in such instances where the present invention is connected to an under-dash model the blower is not needed. A unit such as the present invention can be installed as optional equipment during the initial manufacture of the automobile or other vehicle, or else it can be readily installed in existing vehicles as a convenient accessory. Ditferent types of mounting means may be necessary or utilized in order to adapt the unit to difierent locations or vehicles. The device may be made light in weight and of a rugged and compact construction so that it will be portable, and as shown in FIGURE 5 the device can be used so that its legs straddle the hump 51 in the floor board whereby the base pieces 50 will rest solidly on the floor 52.

Although the invention described is fully capable of achieving the objects and providing the advantages hereinbefore mentioned, it is to be understood that it is merely illustrative of the presently preferred embodiment of the invention and that it is not to be limited to the details of construction herein described other than as defined in the appended claim.

What is claimed is:

In combination with a vehicle having an air conditioning unit, a refrigerator comprising a hollow housing mounted in said vehicle, said housing including spaced parallel horizontally disposed top and bottom portions,

said housing further including spaced parallel vertically 25 disposed side wall members and spaced parallel vertically disposed end Wall members, said housing including inner 5 and outer spaced apart casings having insulation therebetween, the top portion of said housing including a stationary section and a hingedly mounted movable section, a support member connected to said stationary section and said support member having a filter arranged adjacent the lower end thereof, said support member including a reduced diameter upper end portion, a flexible tube having one end connected to said reduced diameter upper end portion, the other end of said tube being connected to said air conditioning unit, a motor driven fan mounted in said support member above said filter, a sleeve rotatably connected to said movable section of said top portion and said sleeve including an inclined upper portion, a plurality of spaced parallel louvers mounted in the upper portion of said sleeve, certain of said well members having spaced parallel downwardly inclined slots therein which define louvered sections, movable closures mounted for movement into and out of opened and closed relation with respect to said louvered sections, brackets mounted in said 20 housing, and reticulated shelves supported on said brackets.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2796822 *Oct 6, 1954Jun 25, 1957Nikolajevic Stevan MAir conditioning apparatus
US2998714 *Feb 15, 1960Sep 5, 1961G & B Mfg Co IncPortable car and beverage cooler
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3164971 *Jun 29, 1962Jan 12, 1965Gentz Edward WAuto cooler
US3444700 *Aug 30, 1967May 20, 1969Ford Motor CoAir conditioner console
US3916639 *Jul 12, 1974Nov 4, 1975Atkinson Richard KAutomobile cooler and receptacle
US4841742 *Jan 22, 1988Jun 27, 1989Robert BibyPortable air conditioner for automotive vehicles
US4910970 *Mar 17, 1987Mar 27, 1990Donald KeepingGlass chilling cabinet
US4936103 *Jun 26, 1989Jun 26, 1990Newman Merle EApparatus and method for controlling food temperature during transporting
US5046329 *May 26, 1989Sep 10, 1991Travis Iii John PPortable air conditioning unit
US5159819 *May 13, 1991Nov 3, 1992Wong Charles Y HPalm sized air conditioner
US5203833 *Mar 16, 1992Apr 20, 1993Howell David SFood storage container heated and cooled by conditioned air in a motor vehicle
US5355694 *Apr 21, 1993Oct 18, 1994Morrow Thomas RMobile cooler
US6151912 *Dec 22, 1998Nov 28, 2000Rose; Jim E.Portable apparatus for selectively heating and cooling an object
US6886360Feb 9, 2004May 3, 2005Coolwell Llc.Portable air conditioner and liquid container
US7155924Sep 7, 2004Jan 2, 2007Coolwell, LlcPortable air conditioner
US8613277 *Mar 15, 2010Dec 24, 2013Well traveled livingsOutdoor flame heater
US20050172658 *Sep 7, 2004Aug 11, 2005Zuckerman Raymond S.Portable air conditioner
US20100236544 *Mar 15, 2010Sep 23, 2010Hall Jr Edwin LOutdoor flame heater
U.S. Classification62/244, 62/337, 62/312, 62/420, 62/419
International ClassificationF25D17/00, F25D23/00
Cooperative ClassificationF25D17/00, F25D23/00, F25D2323/0011
European ClassificationF25D17/00, F25D23/00