US 3083895 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 1963 D. P. wr zLu-zs, JR
COMPRESSOR Filed Feb. 28, 1961 w, ya Z Z 4% Z B a rates 3,fld3,895 Fatentecl Apr. 2, 1953 3,683,895 CUP/IPRESSOR Donald P. Welles, Ira, Rockford, lll., assignor to Besly- Welles (lorporation, South lleloit, lib, a corporation of Illinois Filed Feb. 23, 1%1, Ser. No. 92,331 8 Claims. (Cl. 230-473) This invention is in the field of compressors, for example, air compressors, although it might be applied to other forms of compressible elastic fluid-s, such as various gases and the like. The invention may as well be used as a pump for incompressible iluids, such as a water pump.
A primary object of the invention is an inexpensive pump with a piston that both rotates and reciprocates.
Another object is a compressor which does not require complicated valving.
Another object is an air compressor which may be mounted on the outside of an automobile so as to be driven by the air thrust created by car movement.
Another object is a simple air compressor of the above type with a bearing structure balancing side torque.
Another object is a novel structure for an air compressor of the above type providing fortreciprocation.
Another object is an air compressor which, while simple, is nevertheless reliable in operation.
Other objects will appear from time to time in the ensuing specification and drawings in which:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective of the compressor and its use;
FIGURE 2 is a side view, on an enlarged scale, of the compressor of FIGURE 1 with the cylinder in section;
FIGURE 3 is a top view, on an enlarged scale, of a detail;
FIGURE 4 is a front view of the FIGURE 3 detail;
FlGURE 5 shows four opera-ting positions of the inlet and exhaust ports; and
FIGURE 6 is a section, with parts in full, of a modified form.
In FIGURES 1 and 2, the compressor includes a cylinder Ill closed at one end by a cylinder head 12 with a piston 14 mounted therein to both reciprocate and rotate. The piston is connected to a drive shaft or piston rod 16 which in turn is connected to a source of power, shown in the case of FIGURE 1 as a propeller 13. But it should be understood that I might use a belt and pulley drive or any suitable means or source of power for rotating the piston.
The piston defines a compression chamber 28 at the other end of the cylinder and I provide inlet and exhaust ports 22 and 24 disposed generally on opposite sides of the cylinder, each communicating with the compression space under certain circumstances.
The head end 26 of the piston has a relief area 28 found on the side thereof which extends generally through 180 degrees or one-half of the circumferential extent of the piston. The relief area extends from the head end of the piston axially toward the inlet and exhaust ports so that they will be properly opened and closed in timed relationship in a manner set forth hereinafter.
I provide two bearing races around the piston toward the other end, designated generally at 3tl and 32, each being filled with balls to give smooth rolling support to the piston in the cylinder. One of the bearing races, shown in this case at 39, is disposed in a relief area 31 and on a helix and then comes back on itself on the opposite side. The bottom of the race, as at 34, is generally flat so that the balls roll between two generally parallel concentric surfaces, the fiat 34 and the inside 36 of the cylinder.
I provide an opening 38 in the cylinder generally opposite raceway 3t A retainer or guide 40 is positioned in the opening and is held in by a suitable clip or latch 4-2. The legs of the U-shaped insert or guide are both arcuate as at 44 and are concave toeach other. It will be noted in FIGURE 2 that the legs 34 both extend beyond the inner surface of the cylinder into the groove of the bearing race and the balls pass between the legs when the piston is rotated. It will also be understood in FIG- URE 2 that the ball race 34 comes back on itself or is helical in the other direction on the other side of the piston to form a continuous groove. Thus, the insert 46, when held in place by its clip or retainer 42, will cause the rotating piston to reciprocate back and forth. In a sense, the insert or guide functions like a cam but at the same time allows free movement of the balls so that the pistons will be supported at both ends by ball bearing raceways.
The other bearing 32 may also be a continuous groove with balls, but it will be noted that the bearing race lies entirely in a plane at right angles to the axis of the piston or is completely angular. The bottom of the groove may be somewhat flattened, as at 46, to provide two parallel concentric surfaces between which the balls roll.
I may have a flexible tube 48 or the like connected to the outlet 24 with an air stone 54) on the end of the tube exposed below the surface of water in a suitable tank or container 52. Thus, the compressor, in FIG- URE i, may be used to bubble air through the water in a suitable container, such as a minnow bucket or the like, to aerate the water and keep the minnows, or any suitable form of marine life, alive and in better condition for a longer period of time.
In FIGURE 6, I have shown a modified form in which the piston 54 has a similar raceway 56. However, in this case a plug 58 projects through an opening in the outer cylinder and is held by a suitable clip or latch 68. The lower end of the plug, as at 62, may be tapered somewhat to match the slanting sides of the raceway or groove 56. Gr the plug might be cylindrical throughout with the side walls of the groove generally at right angles to the axis of the piston. Or the plug might be tapered throughout with the opening through the cylinder correspondingly tapered.
The use, operation and function of my invention are as follows:
I provide a simple cylindrical piston for compressing air or any suitable elastic fluid, such as a gas or the like. The piston is supported by two ball bearing raceways, one angular, and the other helical. I position a guide in the helical raceway so that as the piston is rotated it will automatically reciprocate back and forth through a given compression stroke.
I have inlet and outlet ports communicating with the compression chamber in the piston, approximately degrees forward and on opposite sides of the cylinder.
I provide a relief area on the side of the piston which cooperates with the inlet and exhaust ports during rotation of the piston and is related to the helical ball race such that when the piston is moving to the left in FIG- URE 2 in what might be termed its compression stroke, the inlet port 22 will be opposite the solid portion of the piston and covered and the exhaust port 24 will be uncovered or opposite the relief area at 21% of the piston and therefore in communication with the compression chamher 2%. But when the piston moves to the right in FIG- URE 2 through what I might term its suction or intake stroke, the ports reverse with the exhaust port 24 covered or opposite the solid portion of the piston and the intake port 22 uncovered or opposite the relief area 2 8 and therefore in communication with the compression space 2%. These various positions are shown in FIGURE 5,
the first being the beginning of a compression stroke, the second being the middle of the compression stroke, the third being the end of 'the compression stroke and the start of an intake stroke, and the fourth being the middleof the intake stroke.
I may construct the unit so that the compressor itself may'be mounted by a suitable bracket or the likeon the outside of an automobile, for example on the window or rain gutter. Thus the air thrust created by the movement of the automobile would rotate propeller 18 and therefore operate the piston. The unit could be easily. mounted on an automobile to keep bait and minnows alive on the way to or from a fishing or camping trip. Since the air thrust against the propeller and piston would tend to torque the piston about the guide 40, the two complete bearing units prevent the piston from skewingor canting in the cylinder. I
Also,the use of a relief area onthe side of an otherwise solid piston is important. The head end of the piston 26 may, for all intents and purposes, completely. close the compression space 20 at the end of a compression stroke, the clearance in effect being only the volume of the relief area 28, Therefore, even though the unit has'a' quite short stroke, I nevertheless can contain fairly high compression,
While I have shown and described the preferredform and suggested several variations of my invention, it should be understood that suitable additional modifications, changes, substitutions and alterations may be made without departing from the inventions fundamental theme. While I have shown the unit as only single acting, it should be'understood highly duplicating the porting and relief arrangement on'the other end of the piston create a double acting unit. I'h ave stated that the unit is primarily an air compressor but it should be understood that it may be used to compress gases or any-suitable compressible elastic fluid. I
, Further, it might -be'used as a pump, for example, for pumping Wateror otherwise. So no particular effort should be made to'restrict the invention to elastic fluids.
With these and other modifications in mind, I wish that the'invention be unrestricted, except as by theappended claims,
1. In a-pump, a housing,-a piston mounted in the housing for both rotation and reciprocation and defining a compression chamber with the housing, an inlet 'port comrounicating with the compression chamber for admitting fluid to be pumped, an outlet port communicating with the compressionchamber for exhausting fluid, a relief on the side of the'piston cooperating with the inlet and outle'tports so as to alternately open and close them as the piston rotates; at least two axially spaced continuous ball bearing tracks between the piston and housing to provide rotational support for the piston in the housing, at least a portion of one of the tracks being helically disposed, and a guide in the housing'engaging the said one track for reciprocating the piston, as it is rotated, in timed relationship to the opening and closing of the ports so that fluid will be drawn in and exhausted from the compression chamber.
2. Thestructure of claim l'further characterized in that the relief extends around'one side of the piston for approximately 180 thereof, the inlet and outlet ports being on opposite sides of the cylinder approximately 180 apart.
3. The structure of claim 1 further characterized in that each ball bearing track includes a raceway in the piston, a plurality of ball hearings in the raceway, the bottom of the raceway having a flat surface so that the balls roll between two generallyparallel concentric surfaces, the flat surface in the bottom of the raceway and the inner surface of the cylinder.
4. The structure of claim 1 further characterized in that the means for rotating the piston includes a propeller connected to the piston so that when the unit is mounted on the outside of an automobile, the propeller and piston will be rotated by the air thrust created by movement of the automobile, andfurtherincluding a tube connected to the outlet port leading to and submerged'in a portable tankfor bait so that the compressed airwill aeratewater in the tank.
5. In a compressor, a cylinder and piston definin'g'a compression chamber, the piston being mounted for both rotation and reciprocation, at least two axially spaced continuous ball bearing tracks between the piston and housing to provide rotational supportfor the piston in the housing, at least a portion of one of the tracks being heli cally disposed, and a guid'e'in the housing engaging the said one track for'reciprocating the piston, as it is rotated, in timed'relation'shipto the opening 'andclosing of the ports so that fluid will be drawn in and exhausted from the compression chamber, and means forrotating the piston.
6. The structure of claim 5 further characterized in that each ball bearing track includes a raceway in the piston, a'plurality of ball bearings in said raceway, the bottom of each raceway having a flat surface so that the balls in the raceway will roll between two generally parallel concentric surfaces, the flat surfacein the bottom of the raceway andthe inside ofthe cylinder. 7. The structure of claim 5 further characterized in that the guide is removably positioned in an opening in the cylinder, and further including means for releasably holding theguide in the cylinder opening.
8. The structure of claim 5 further characterized by and in'cludin'g inlet and outletports communicating with the ccitripiession chamberandopening against thepiston, and a relief area on the side of the piston opposite the inlet'ar'idoutlet ports and extending a circumferential disstance relative to the distance between the ports such that the ports will be alternately communicated to or shut oft from the compression chamber, the reciprocation of the piston defining suction and compression sti'oke's an'dbeirig such relative to the relationship between the relief areaand the ports so that during the suction stroke, the compression chamber will be in communication with the inlet port throughthe relief area and during the compression stroke the exhaust port will be in communication with the compression chamber through the relief area.
References Cited in thefile of thispatent UNITED STATES PATENTS 312,726 Johnston Feb, 24, 1885 2,460,527 Oliveros Feb. 1, 1949 FOREIGN PATENTS 158 Italy of 1876 392,359 France -4 Sept. 22, 1908 565,829 France Nov. 12, 1923