US 3045253 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
H. K. PRICE SAFETY SWIMMING POOL July 24, 1962 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Feb. 27, 1959 Amen/2r.- //0//as A. B'lbe J N BY jjwm 1- 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 H. K. PRICE SAFETY SWIMMING POOL July 24, 1962 Filed Feb July 24, 1962 H. K. PRICE 3,045,253
SAFETY SWIMMING POOL Filed Feb. 27, 1959 4 Sheets-Sheet 3 July 24, 1962 H. K. PRICE 3,045,253
SAFETY SWIMMING POOL Filed Feb. 27, 1959 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 United States Patent 3,045,253 SAFETY SWIMMING POOL Hollas K. Price, Box 701, Oak Hill, W. Va.
Filed Feb. 27, 1959, Ser. No. 796,100
Claims. (Cl. 4--172) This invention relates to new and useful improvements in swimming pools, and the principal object of the inven-' tion is to provide a safety device for such pools whereby to safeguard occupants thereof against drowning.
The above object is attained by the provision of a false bottom which normally rests on the bottom of the pool but, inthe event of an emergency, maybe quickly and easily raised to the top of the pool, thus bringing all the occupants to the surface of the water and preventing drowning of any one or more of them.
An important feature of the invention resides in the provision of power actuated means in the form of motor driven winches and cables for raising the false bottom to the top of the pool, and also for loweringthe false bottom to the bottom of the pool where it rests in readiness for use. i
Another important feature of the invention resides in an arrangement of the invention which renders the same especially adaptable for use in pools with a slanting bottom, that is, pools having a relatively shallow and a relatively deep' end, the false bottom normally resting in a slanting position on the bottom of the pool but the arrangement of the winch means being such that when the false bottom israised to the top, it is substantially horizontal.
Another important feature of the invention resides in the provision of means for guiding the false bottom in its movement between the lowered and raisedpositions.
Another important feature of the invention resides in the provision of a ladder which is carried by and movablewith the false bottom and extends to the top of the pool. Another important feature of the invention involves the provision of a modified embodiment wherein pneumatic or hydraulic cylinders are employed in place of winches and cables for raising and lowering the false bottom.
FIGURE 9 is a fragmentary sectional detail on an enlarged scale, showing a portion of the false bottom with its flexible guard strip;
FIGURE 10 is a fragmentary sectional view, similar to that shown in FIGURE 5 but illustrating a modified arrangement of the invention;
FIGURE 11 is afragmentary plan view of the subject shown in FIGURE 10;
FIGURE 12 is a fragmentary sectional view showing another modified form of the invention;
FIGURE 13 is a fragmentary sectional view, showing still another modified embodiment; and
FIGURES 14 and 15 are diagrammatic views showing two different arrangements of the pneumatic or hydraulic cylinders and their operative connections.
Referring now to the accompanying drawings in detail, more particularly to FIGURES 1-9 inclusive, the general reference numeral 10 designates a swimming pool having a slanting bottom 11, a relatively deep end wall 12, a relatively shallow end wall 13 and a pair of side walls 14, 15, all formed from concrete, or the like, in the conventional manner.
The safety device in accordance with the invention comprises a false bottom or net 16 which normally rests in a slanting position on the slanting bottom 11 of the pool but, by means hereinafter described, may be quickly and easily raised to a substantially horizontal position at the top of the pool to prevent any one or more occupants of the pool from drowning.
The false bottom 16 consists of a frame including a set of longitudinal members 17 and a set of transverse members 18, this frame being covered by a floor 19 of suitable foraminous material such as wire mesh, screening, or the like, as is best shown in FIGURE 9. The floor 19 is preferably made in sections as indicated at 19a in FIGURE 1, these sections having abutting edges overlying the frame members 17, 18, so thatin the event of damage to any of Some of the advantages of the invention reside in its simplicity of construction, in its efiicient and dependable operation, and in its adaptability for use in connection with swimming pools of different sizes and types. 7
With the foregoing more important objects and features in view and such other objects'and features as may become apparent as this specification proceeds, the invention will be understood from the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein like characters of reference are used to designate like parts, and wherein:
FIGURE 1 is a plan view of a swimming pool embodying the safety device of the invention; FIGURE 2 is a longitudinal sectional view thereof,-
taken substantially inthe plane of the line 2-2 in FIG- URE 1;
FIGURE 3 is a cross-sectional view, taken substantially in the plane, of the line 3-3 in FIGURE 1;
7 FIGURE ,4 is a fragmentary sectional view, taken substantially in the plane of the line 4--4 in FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 5 is a fragmentary sectional view on an enlarged scale, taken substantially in the plane of the line 5'-5 in FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 6 is a fragmentary sectional view on an enlarged scale, taken substantially in the plane of the line 66in FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 7 is a fragmentary top plan view on an enlarged scale, showing. the arrangement of one of the winch units and guide pulleys; I
FIGURE 8 is a fragmentary elevational view of the subject shown in FIGURE 7;. t
the sections, they may be individually replaced. As indicated at 21 in FIGURE 5, the bottom 11 of the pool is formed with longitudinally and transversely extending grooves or channels to receive the frame members 17, 18 of the false bottom, so that when the false bottom is in its lowered position, the floor 19 rests directly on the'upper surface of the bottom 11.
The power actuated means for raising and lowering the false bottom 16 are in the form of motor driven winches, cables and guide pulleys. As illustrated, two winch units 22, 23 are secured to the end portions of a shaft24 which is rotatably mounted in suitable bearings 25 and disposed transversely adjacent the deep end of the pool. The mid portion of the shaft 24 carries an additional winch member 26. With reference to FIGURES 7 and 8, it will be noted that the winch unit 23 illustrated therein is substantially cone-shaped and comprises a set of winch members 23a, 23b, 23c, 23d, 232 and 23 The member 23a is relatively large in diameter and of the same diameter as the aforementioned winch member 26. The winch members 23b and 23c are equal in diameter but smaller than the member 23a. Similarly, the members 23d and 23s are equal in diameter but smaller than the members 23b and 23c. The member 23 is smaller in diameter than the members 23d and 23a. The winch unit 22 is the same as the unit 23, with exception that an extra one of the smallest members is provided, as indicated at 22g in FIGURE 1.' o 7 Several cables are windable on the respective winchv members. Thus, a cable 27 is windable on the member 23a, cable 28 on the member 23b, cable 29 on the member 23c, cable 30* on the member 23a; cable 31 on the member 23e, and cable 32 on the member 231. A corresponding cable arrangement is associated with the winch a unit 22, with exception that another cable 33 is provided for the winch member 22g.
Referring again to the false floor or bottom 16, it will be noted that the transverse frame members 18 thereof project laterally beyond the side edges of the false floor or bottom and constitute guide elements 18awhich are slidable in recessed guideways 34 for-med in the side walls 14, of the pool and extending from the bottom to the top of the pool, as shown. As will become hereinafter apparent, when the false bottom 16 is raised from its sloping lowered position to its substantially horizontal raised position, the end of the false bottom at the deep end of the pool is raised at a faster rate than at the shallow end, so as to make such raising action possible. Accordingly, since the false bottom is not raised uniformly in a straight line, the guideways 34 are slanted or inclined somewhat as illustrated in FIGURE 2, to permit sliding of the guide elements 18a therein without binding.
Referring now to FIGURE 1, it will be noted that pairs of guide pulleys 35, 36 are suitably mounted at the upper end of the guideways 34 intermediate the ends of the pool and single guide pulleys 37 are provided at the upper end of the guideways at the shallow end of the pool. Moreover, two sets of three guide pulleys each are provided at the upper end of the guideways at the deep end of the pool, as indicated at 38. A guide pulley 39 is provided at the deep end of the pool centrally of the wall 12 and a corresponding pulley 40 is provided centrally of the shallow end. Additional pulleys 41, 42 are provided at the shallow end of the pool as shown, and single guide pulleys 43, 44 are provided at the lower ends of the guideways 34, below the respective pulleys 35, 36, as is best illustrated in FIGURES 2 and 3.
The cables 27 from the members 23a of the winch units 22, 23 pass over the pulleys 38 and are anchored in any suitable manner to the false bottom 16 at the deep end of the pool. Similarly, a cable 45, windable on the winch member 26, passes over the pulley 39 and is anchored to the false bottom centrally of the points of anchorage of the cables 27, adjacent the deep end wall of the pool. The cables 28 and 29 of the winch members 23b and 230 pass over the pulleys 36, the'cables 29 alsopassing over the pulleys 38. The cables 28, after passing downwardly over the pulleys 36, are anchored to the false bottom 16, but the cables 29 pass around the lower guide pulleys 44 prior to being anchored to the false bottom.
Similarly, the cables 30, 31 of the winch members 23d, 23e pass over the pulleys 35, the cables 30 being anchored to the false bottom and also engaging the pulleys 38, while the cables 31 pass around the lower pulleys 43 prior to being anchored to th false bottom;
The cables 32 of the winch members 23] pass over the pulleys 37 and are anchored to the falsebottom at the shallow end of the pool, while the cable 33 from the extra winch member 22g passes around the pulleys 42, 41 and 40, before being anchored to the false bottom, centrally of the shallow end of the pool.
It is to be noted that the cables27, 28, 30, 32 and 33 are windable on their respective winch members, together with the cable 45, in the same direction, while the cables 29 and 31 are windable on their drums or winch members in a relatively opposite direction, so that when the shaft 24 is rotated in one direction, thecables 27, 28, 30, 32, 33 and 45 are wound for the purpose of raising the false bottom to the top of the pool, while the cables 29 and 31 are unwound. A converse situation prevails during rotation of the shaft in the opposite direction, when the false bottom is being lowered.
It will be understood that while in the drawings the cables have been shown as being anchored to the false bottom only at two spaced points intermediate the ends of the pool, anchorage at more than two such points may be provided by simply increasing the number of cables and winch members, as desired. In any event, the various guide pulleys are rotatably journalled in suitable 4 brackets secured to the walls of the pool as exemplified at 45 in FIGURES 7 and 8.
Rotation of the winch shaft 24 is effected through suitable reduction gearing 46 by a suitable motor 47 as is best shown in FIGURES 1 and 4, and a conventional bra-ke 48 is provided on the shaft 24 to lock the shaft against rotation at any given point when the false bottom is raised off the bottom of the pool. The motor 47 is reversible, whereby the-shaft 24 may be rotated selectively in both directions to raise or lower the false bottom 16. Also, suitable limit switches 49 and 50 are provided adjacent the deep end of the pool for engagement by the false bottom at the upper and lower limits of its travel and thereby automatically interrupt the operation of the motor 47 whenthe false bottom reaches either its raised or its lowered position. I
The various cables, guide pulleys, winch units, gearing 46 and motor 47 are located in suitable troughs or pits 51 formed in the concrete structure Surrounding the sides and ends of the pool, and these troughs or pits are covered by removable plates, as indicated at 52 in FIGURE 6, so that the mechanism contained therein is not exposed.
' Also, in order to prevent possible injury of occupants of the pool by coming in contact with the edges of the false bottom 16 while it is being raised, a guard strip 53 of flexible material is provided at the marginal edges of the false bottom and slidably engages the side and end walls of the pool, as shown in FIGURE 9. The strip 53 is secured in place by suitable fasteners 54.
It will be noted that a ladder 55 is provided, this being carried by and movable with the false bottom 16 by having its lower end secured to the bottom 16 as indicated at 56 in FIGURE 6. The ladder extends to the top of the pool in the usual manner, but its upper end is provided with downwardly projecting extensions 57 which are slidable in tubular guides 58 mounted vertically in the ground at one side of the pool. Thus the ladder, together with any persons thereon, will be raised together with the false bottom, but such a raising action will not subject the occupants of the ladder to injury. The guides 58 serve to retain'the ladder in its properly oriented position while facilitating its raising and lowering. The guides are sufficiently large in diameter to permit a free fit of the extensions 57 and thereby compensate for any variation from true vertical in the movement of the ladder during shifting of the false bottom-between its lowered, slanting position and itsraised horizontal plane.
The accompanying FIGURES 10-15 illustrate modified embodiments of the invention wherein pneumatic or hydraulic cylinders are used for actuating the false bottom, in place of the aforementioned winches and cables. In these modified forms, the arrangement of the pool and false bottom 16 is the same as already described but, as shown in. FIGURES l0 and 11, a pneumatic or hydraulic cylinder 60 is-mounted in each of the guideways 34, such as for example, by a base plate 61. The cylinders vary in length with the difierent guideways in proportion to the varying depth of thepool, and the piston rod 62 of each cylinder is provided with a yoke 63 carrying a pulley64. A cable 65 passes over this pulley and has one end thereof anchored to the false bottom 16 as indicated at 66, while its other end is suitably anchored to the pool, as at 67. The cylinder 60, which may be singleacting, has a fluid inlet port 68 adjacent its lower end, and it will be apparent from the foregoing that when fluid under pressure is admitted into the several cylinders, upward sliding of the piston rods 62 will cause the cables 65 to raise the false bottom 16 to the top of the pool. Since the anchors 67 at one end of: the cables 65 are stationary, the stroke of the piston rods needs to be only one-half the distance between the lowered and raised posi-' tions of the false bottom, and suitable enclosures, indicated by the dotted lines 69, may be provided at the top of the pool to receive the piston rods when they are upwardly projected, whereby to protect persons against coming in contact therewith.
Suitable control valves, hereinafter again mentioned, are provided to regulate the flow of fluid to the cylinders so that the piston rods of the cylinders at the deep end of the pool travel faster than those at the shallow end, to effect faster raising of the false bottom at the deep end than at the shallow end and permit the false bottom to assume a horizontal plane at the top of the .pool. With the cable arrangement and single-acting cylinders shown in FIGURES and 11, the false bottom 16 is lowered by gravity to the bottom of the pool when fluid is permitted to be discharged from the cylinders.
FIGURE '12 illustrates another modified arrangement wherein double-acting cylinders 70 are used for selectively raising and lowering the false bottom. In this arrangement the piston rods 71 are connected in any suitable manner as at 72 to what amount to endless cables 73 which pass around upper and lower guide pulleys 74, 75 in the guideways 34 and are anchored to the false bottom 16 as indicated at 76. As will be apparent, when the piston rods 71 are lowered or retracted into the cylinders 70, the false bottom will be raised, and when the rods are raised or projected from the cylinders, the bottom will be lowered. The stroke of the piston rods is comparable to the distance between the lowered and raised positions of the false bottom, under which circumstances the length of the cylinders 70 may require their lower portions to be embedded in the ground below the bottom level of the pool, as illustrated. However, this arrangement does not require the piston rods to be projected above the top of the pool, so that protective enclosures such as shown at 69 in FIGURE 10 are not necessary.
The double-acting cylinders 70 have upper and lower fluid inlet ports 77, 78 which, as shown in FIGURE 14, are connected by suitable conduits to a four-way valve 79 of any conventional type. This valve also communicates with a fluid reservoir 80 and with a suitable pump 81,-whereby upon appropriate actuation of the valve 79 the piston rods of the cylinders may be either retracted or projected to correspondingly raise or lower the false bottom. The conduits leading to the ports of the individual cylinders are provided with suitable flow control valves 82, one for each port, whereby the rate of fluid flow in and out of the cylinders may be accurately preadjusted so that the piston rods of the several cylinders are moved at different speeds, corresponding to the position of the cylinders relative to the deep and shallow ends of the pool. It may be noted that for illustrative purposes, FIGURE 14 shows the cylinders at only one side of the pool and that the cylinders are duplicated at the opposite side and connected in parallel with the cylinders shown to the valve 79.
The valve, pump, tank and conduit arrangement used in connection with the cylinders 60 of FIGURES 10 and 11 is comparable to that shown in FIGURE 14, with exception that the valve 79 is a three-way valve and only one conduit extends to each of the single-acting cylinders used therein.
Another modified embodiment of the invention is shown in FIGURE 13 wherein double-acting cylinders 83 are anchored, as at 84, to the false bottom 16 for raising and lowering movement therewith. The piston rods 85 of the cylinders 83 are pivoted as at 86 to suitable blocks 87 at the bottom of the guideways 34 and fluid inlet ports 88, 89 are provided at the top and bottom of the cylinders. Flexible hoses (not shown) are connected to these ports to permit raising and lowering movements of the cylinders and it, will be apparent that when fluid under pressure is admitted into the top of the cylinders, the relatively stationary piston rods 85 will cause the cylinders to slide upwardly, thus raising the false bottom 16. Conversely, when fluid is admitted into the bottom of the cylinders, the false bottom will be lowered. Since the cylinders are directly connected to the false bottom, the use of guide pulleys and cables completely eliminated in this form of the invention.
The accompanying FIGURE 15 illustrates a modified cylinder arrangement which eliminates the use of the several flow control valves 82. As such, the arrangement in this figure employs cylinders 9% which are of different diameters, so that the effective area of the pistons therein is proportionately different and coordinated with the particular position of the dilferent cylinders in relation to the deep and shallow ends of the pool. Thus, cylinders of a large diameter are used at the shallow end and those of a small diameter at the deep end, producing relatively slow piston rod travel at the shallow end and fast travel at the deep end, whereby to facilitate raising of the false bottom from a slanting position at the bottom of the pool to a horizontal position at the top, Without the use of flow control valves for each cylinder.
It will be noted that unlike the cable and winch arrangement of FIGURES 1-9 which is primarily intended for use with rectangular pools, the pneumatic or hydraulic arrangements of FIGURES 10-15 may be employed with round, kidney-shaped or other pools having nonrectangular configurations.
While in the foregoing there have been described and shown the preferred embodiments of the invention, various modifications may become apparent 'to those skilled in the art to which the invention relates. Accordingly, it is not desired to limit the invention to this disclosure and various modifications may be resorted to, such as may lie within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.
What is claimed as new is:
1. The combination of a swimming pool having an open top, a perimetric wall and a bottom, and safety apparatus comprising a not substantially coextensive with the area of said pool, said net being movably positioned in the pool for raising and lowering movement between a lowered position on the bottom of the pool and a raised position atthe top of the pool, the perimetric wall of the pool being provided at perimetrically spaced points with vertically elongated recesses, fluid motors positioned in said recesses, each of said fluid motors including a stationary member and a vertically reciprocable member, means operatively connecting the vertically reciprocable members of said fluid motors to said net whereby the latter may be raised and lowered concurrently with reciprocation of said reciprocable members, and means for energizing said fluid motors.
2. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said stationary members of said fluid motors comprise cylinders fixedly mounted in said recesses, said reciprocable members comprising piston rods slidable in and projecting upwardly from said cylinders, said operative connecting means comprising cables connected at one end thereof to said net and anchored at their other end to said perimetric wall at the top of the pool, and pulleys rotatably mounted at the upper ends of said piston rods and engaging intermediate portions of said cables.
3. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said stationary members of said fluid motors comp-rise cylinders fixedly mounted'in said recesses, said reciprocable members comprising piston rods' slidable in and projecting upwardly from said cylinders, said operative connecting means comprising pairs of vertically spaced pulleys rotatably mounted in said recesses, and endless cables engaging said pairs of pulleys, each cable having two vertical stretches movable in relatively opposite directions, one stretch of each cable being secured to said net and the other stretch being secured to the piston rod of the associated fluid motor.
4. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said stationary members of said fluid motors comprise vertical piston rods fixedly mounted at their lower end in said recesses, said reciprocable members comprising cylinders slidable on said piston rods, said operative connecting means comprising fastener elements securing said net to said cylinders.
5. The combination of a swimming pool having an open 7 top and a relatively deep end and a relatively shallow end, said pool including a perimetric wall and a sloping bottom, and safety apparatus comprising a net substantially coextensive with the area of the pool, said net being movably positioned in the pool for raising and lowering movement between a slanting lowered position on the sloping bottom of the vpool and a raised position at the top of the pool, the perimetric wall of the pool being provided 'at the deep and shallow ends with vertically elongated recesses, a first set of fluid motors positioned in said recesses at the deep end, a second set of fluid motors positioned in said recesses at the shallow end, each of said fluid motors including a stationary member and a vertically reciprocable. member, means operatively connecting the vertically reciprocable members of said fluid motors to said net whereby the latter may be raised and lowered concurrently with reciprocation of said reciprocable members, means for energizing the fluid motors in the first set at a predetermined rate of speed, and means for 8 energizingthe fluid motors in the second set at apredetermined slower speedthan the motors in the first set, whereby said net maybe substantially horizontal when in its raised position.
References Cited in the' file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,112,466 Maloon Mar. 29, 1938 2,339,570 Jackson Jan. 18, 1944 2,603,796 Danielsen et a1. July 22, 1952 2,754,523 Bruckner et al July 17, 1956 2,754,899 'Karobonik et al. July 17, 1956 2,803,835 Summers Aug. 27, 1957 2,812,520 Pinckard Nov. 12, 1957 2,825,910 Prudek Mar. 11, 1958 2,958,083 Shook et a1. Nov. 1, 1960 FOREIGN PATENTS 619,263 Germany Sept. '16, 1935