US 3069121 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 18, 1962 F. L. HOOPER- 3, 9, 1
CONSTRUCTION OF COLLAPSIBLE SANITARY WIRE BELTS INVENTOR. FR E 0 H O OPER United States Patent Ofifice 3,069,l21 Patented Dec. 18, 1962 3,969,121 CONSTRUCTION OF COLLAPSIBLE SANITARY WIRE BELTS Fred L. Hooper, 304 Talbot Ave., Cambridge, Md. Filed Dec. 1, 1959, Ser. No. 856,460
1 Claim. (Cl. 245-6) This invention relates to types of construction for woven wire fabric such as is used in conveyor belts in which connecting rods having loops on the ends extend through convolutions of adjoining spirals, the end convolutions of the spirals also having loops thereon whereby the fabric may be collapsed or moved into a configuration which permits removal of all foreign matter or as described hereafter, permits the fabric to be completely sanitized with a detergent or other cleansing agent.
The purpose of this invention is to provide fabric constructions for woven wire belts which enable the user to quickly and easily clean the fabric of all foreign matter.
I The specific present use is as a belt to convey products in the food industry where the possibility of bacteria growth being transferred from the belt to the product must be held to a minimum. In the past this possibility presented little difliculty due to the fact that the food product, at least once during the processing, was subjected to a temperature sufficiently high to kill all bacteria. However, with the advent of frozen foods the industry underwent an abrupt change. Any bacteria allowed to grow on the belt may be transferred to the food product being carried by the belt as such bacteria will remain in a dormant state while frozen and will not be killed by the freezing process. Subsequently, when the consumer thaws the product, the bacteria initially present will initiate an action whereby the quantity of bacteria will double at a late on the order of once each 20 minutes. This bacteria growth during the thawing process causes deterioration of the pro-duct. Consequently, the pro-duct must be prepared and frozen with an absolute minimum of bacteria present and hence the belt must be one that is easily sanitized.
Belt constructions used at present in the frozen food industry are composed of transversely disposed spirals connected by rods. In this construction the spirals will move longitudinally with respect to each other and will permit sanitizing.
The object of this invention is, therefore, to provide constructions whereby the individual components of the belt may be moved out of intimate contact one with another and allow sanitizing. In the construction of this invention the belt utilizes rods as bearing surfaces between spirals and it is another object of this invention to provide a construction whereby the spirals and rods may be moved longitudinally, one with respect to another into a configuration which permits free and open access to all parts of the spirals and rods for sanitizing with a detergent or other cleansing agent.
Another object of this invention is to present types of construction whereby the component parts are given limited freedom of movement longitudinally for sanitizing, but which upon return to normal operating conditions causes all component parts to return exactly to their initial relative positions. In other words the spirals must not tend to rotate with respect to each other and the spirals anltli rods must not displace laterally with respect to each ot er.
Another important object of this invention is, therefore, to provide means for closing ends of rods and spirals at the sides of a woven wire conveyor belt whereby both the rods and spirals are free to move longitudinally in respect to each other in a belt and in which elongated loops are provided on ends of the spirals and rods.
Consequently, no single component is rigidly fastened to any other component and each may move with re- 2 spect to another. However, when the belt is pulled taut all components will return to their initial positions.
Other features and advantages of the invention will appear from the following description taken in connection with the drawings, wherein:
FIGURE 1 is a plan view of a section of a wire conveyor belt in which spirals are joined by rods and in which the spirals and rods are self contained.
FIGURE 2 is an edge elevational view of the section of Wire chain shown in FIGURE 1.
FIGURE 3 is a plan view similar to that shown in FIG- URE 1 showing the parts collapsed wherein the spirals and rods are moved longitudinally of the belt whereby spaces are provided between all parts.
FIGURE 4 is an edge elevational view of the wire conveyor belt shown in FIGURE 3.
FIGURE 5 is a view showing portions of a rod and coil illustrating the loops at the ends of the rods and coils and showing the par-ts in spaced relation.
Referring now to the drawings wherein like reference characters denote corresponding parts the improved wire fabric conveyor belt of this invention includes a plurality of rods 10 which each have a plurality of spaced apart corrugations that define ofiset portions 11, and the ends of the rods are shaped to provide closed generally elliptical loops 12. The loops of one red have projecting therethrough a portion of an adjoining rod as shown in the drawings.
The belt further includes a plurality of spiral elements 13 which each include a plurality of convolutions 14 that embody straight portions 15, and the straight portions 15 are interconnected by curved sections 16. The curved sections 16 are arranged in engagement with the offset portions 11 of adjacent rods 10.
The ends of the spiral elements are provided with loops 17 that are coiled around an adjacent rod and the last named coils are secured as at 18 to contiguous straight portions of an adjoining convolution.
The loops on the spiral elements are arranged in spaced parallel relation with respect to each other, and the loops on the rods are arranged in spaced parallel relation with respect to each other. As shown in the drawings the loops on the rods are arranged .angularly with respect to the loops on the spiral elements. Also, the loops on the rods are oriented in the same direction with respect to each other. Similarly, the loops on the spiral elements are oriented in the same direction relative to each other.
The loops of the rods are not connected to loops on the ends of the spirals and, consequently, the rods are free to slide longitudinally of the spiral elements and the spiral elements are free to slide transversely of the rods.
A belt constructed in accordance with this invention provides the user with a unit, by which a cleaning or sanitizing agent may reach every part of the belt. When the belt is collapsed by a means at the descretion of the user each individual component will move out of close contact with other components and will allow various sanitizing methods to adequately clean every pant of the belt. Then when the belt is again pulled taut and normal operation resumes every individual component will return to its initial position leaving the belt clean and transferring a minimum of foreign matter or bacteria to the product being carried.
It will be understood that modifications, within the scope of the appended claim, may be made in the design and arrangement of the parts without departing from the spirit of the invention.
What is claimed is:
As a new article of manufacture, a conveyor belt having a woven wire fabric construction and said belt comprising a plurality of rods which are each provided with a plurality of spaced apart corrugations that define offset portions, the ends of the rods being shaped to provide closed generally elliptical loops, the loops of 'one rod having projecting therethrough a portion of an adjacent rod, said belt further including a plurality of spiral elements which each include a plurality of convolutions that embody straight portions which are interconnected by curved sections, said curved sections being arranged in engagement with the offset portions of adjacent rods, the ends of the spiral elements being provided with loops that are coiled around a contiguous rod, said last named loops being affixed to contiguous straight portions of adjoining convolutions, the loops on the spiral elements being arranged in spaced parallel relation with respect to each other and being oriented in the same direction; the loops on the rods being arranged in spaced parallel relation with respect to each other and being oriented in the same direction, the loops on the rods being arranged angularly with respect to the loops on the spinal elements.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS