US 3101089 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Aug. 20, 1963 J. A. BROWN ETAL com 'CLUB CLEANING MACHINE 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Dec. 19, 1961 INVENTORJ A. ERoW/V 07-70 4-. pawn-2 47R.
J. A. BROWN ETAL v GOLF CLUB CLEANING MACHINE Aug. 20 1963 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Dec. 19. 1961 V IN V EN TORS J'flM'S 4. BROWN orro s. Peww444 J'R. y STAA/AY 4-. Jane:
Gan dwuet A T TOR/$45K? amines 7 corn onus CLEANING MAQHlNE 7 arts A. Brown and Utto E. Pennell, in, Detroit, Mich,
and Stanley E. .lacke, Ridgefield, Conn, assignors to Oakland Metal Fabricators, Inc, Warren, Mich, a corporation of Michigan Filed Dec. 19,1961, Ser. No. 169,478 8 Claims. (Cl. 134ll8t) United States Patent O of cleaning the heads of golf clubs, and in particular those a surfaces of such heads as are most subject to fouling.
It is an object of the invention to provide a machine having a tank through the open top of which thehead of a golf club may be received for submersion in a cleaning fluid in the tank with the handle of the golf club extending out of the open end of the tank, and With means associated with the tank for directing high frequency 5 acoustic waves in the cleaning solution against the club head.
Another object of the invention is the provision of a machine which will simultaneously clean the heads of a number of golf clubs and which includes an open top tank within which the heads of the golf clubs are disposed for submersion within a cleaning solution and with a plurality of electroacoustic transducers or other means for generating high frequency waves in the cleaning'solntion being associated with the tank and directing such 1 waves against the club heads in the tank.
Another object of the invention is the provision of a machine of the aforesaid character in which the tank for reception of the golfclub heads is so designed as to enable the club heads to be readily received therewithin and provide for support of a plurality of transducers at optimum positions with respect to the faces of the club heads so that high frequency waves generated thereby are directed toward and against such faces. A concomitant object is the provision of a cleaning solution tank so constructed as to prevent improper reception of the golf club heads therewithin while simultaneously enabling all the clubs to be inserted in the tank in the same fashion. Furthermore the tank construction enables the use of a'minimum quantity of cleaning solution, and complete draining of the cleaning solution from the tank when the solution is suflioiently fouled with dirt removed from the club heads. I
The machine is designed so as to be self-contained, that is to say, it includes the tank in which the golf club heads are received, and the means for setting up the high frequency wave motions in the cleaning solution, with the only necessary outside connection being that'rfor connecting the machine to a source of electrical power.
Other objects, advantages, and meritorious features will more fully appear from the specification, claims, and accompanying drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a machine embodying the invention;
FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view taken on the line 22 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view taken on the line 33 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view taken on the line 4-4 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view taken on the line 5-5 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view taken substantially on the line 66 of PEG. 2; and
FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view taken substantially on the line 77 of FIG. 5.
In the illustrative embodiment of the invention shown I ing the cabinet on the ground or floor.
in the 'drawin gsthere is provided a cleaning solution containing tank open at the top and through such open top the head of a golf club may be inserted into the tank for submersion in acleaning fluid disposed in the tank, and with means associated with the tank for generating a high frequency (20 kcs.) acoustic wave in such fluid and directing such wave motion against the club head to clean the same. Means are provided for supporting the golf club so that thehead is disposed within the tank in the proper position to be cleaned. I
Preferably two tanks are provided so that irons may be cleaned in one tank simultaneouslywith woods in the other tank. Tank 10 is adapted to receive the irons and tank 12 to receive woodsl The means for causing the high frequency wave motion in the cleaning solution preferably comprises a plurality of transducers with a pair of transducersbeing provided for each club head. Each pairoftransducers is disposed to direct the wave motions they generate toward and against the surfaces of their respective golf club head which is disposed adjacent them. The machine may, if desired, be coin operated and one or more machines placed at a suitable location on or near the golf course.
The machine may be, and is preferably enclosed by a housing or cabinet 24 having suitable legs 26 for support- The bottom of the cabinet is closed by floor '28. The side walls and floor of the housing are preferably non-magnetic to reduce radiation losses from the electronic generator and to this end maybe constructed of aluminum, fiber glass, etc. The top 30 of the housing is preferably formed integrally with the cleaning solution tanks. In the constructions disclosed herein the top 36 and tanks 10 and 12 are formed of stainless steel. The top is provided with a pair of openings 32 and 34 forming the open top for each of the cleaning solution tanks. The tanks are suspended within I the cabinet from the top 3!} and to this end the walls of the tank may be integrally secured to the top 30.
Each of the tanks is of a shape adapted to give a fixed and restricted radiation field within which the high frequency motion generated in the cleaning solution is confined, with the shape being such that the wave motion is beamed directly toward and against the club heads dis- .4, and 6. As shown in FIGS. 2 and 4 it comprises a pair of downwardly extending front and rear wall portions 36 and 38 respectively which are secured integrally along the upper edges with the top 30 at the margin of the opening 32 through the top 30. Such wall portions provide a club head guiding chute C opening downwardly into a cleaning pocket or wave radiationarea P of the tank. Wall portions 36 and 3% terminate .at their lower edges in a pair of spaced apart parallel wall portions 40 and 42 which are joined by another wall portion 44. End walls 46 and '48 are secured at their upper edges to the top 3% at the opening 32 and to the meeting edges of 'wall portions 36, 3-8, 40, 42 and 44 to provide a fluid. tight tank within which-the cleaning solution 50 may be contained. It will be observed from FIG. 2 that the surface of the cleaning solution within tank 10 extends to substantially the intersection of wall portions 38 and 42. At this level the solutionj'will completely fill the wave radiation or cleaning pocket of the tank and cover the golf club heads disposed within such pocket.
At the lowest point of tank 10, that is to say at the intersection'of wall portions 40 and 44 adrain line 52 is connected as indicated at 53. The drain line may comprise a short nipple rigidly secured to the tank and opening through the bottom thereof with a hose received over the nipple and extending to a valve assembly generally indicated at 54. The valve assembly comprises in effect two valves, having handles 56 and 56 with one of the valves communicating with line 52, and the other with line 52/, such that when handle 56 is in the position shown in FIGS. 2 and 4 the associated valve is open allowing drainage of the' solution and fouling material from the tank, while upon movement of the valve handle to another position the line 52 is closed to prevent the escape of the solution from tank 510.
On the wall portion 42 are mounted the transducers for effecting the high frequency wave motion in the cleaning solution and directing the waves against the club heads disposed in tank 10. As heretofore mentioned there are preferably two transducers for each club head disposed in the tank. The tank is adapted to receive five irons and therefore ten transducers are provided. The transducers are indicated at 58, 6t}, 62, 64, 66 and 68. While four more transducers are provided they are not shown per-se, but it is to be understood that the transducers are arranged in two rows of five each on the wall portion 42" as shown in FIGS. 2 and 6. The transducers are of similar and conventional construction being readily available on the open market such that a very brief description will suftfice. Each transducer is of the electroacoustic type having an electrostrictive converter portion 69 secured to a truncated cone 69' by clamping means 71. The cone 69' may be secured by epoxy resin or other banding, or by a stud-weld to the wall portion 42. of the radiation pocket P to set up a vibration of the wall. While an electrostrictive converter is preferred at this writing, other types may be functionally satisfactory, such as a magnetostrictive type. The vibration of the wall portion 42 is in a direction perpendicular to its surfaces and this in turn sets up an acoustic wave motion in the cleaning solution generally perpendicular to the wall and directed toward the face of the club to be cleaned. The interior .wall surface of wall portion 42 faces in the direction of the club heads disposed in the tank 10 and as shown in FIG. 6 the wave motion is directed along paths indicated by the arrows against the faces of the irons to clean the same. Wall portion 40, which parallels wall portion 42, reflects the waves bouncing off the golf club heads, as for example club head 70 against the back side of the club head 72 as indicated by the dash line 74. Also, the pocket-like shape of the radiation chamber P of the tank tends to confine or restrict the acoustic waves to such chamber, or in other words to the area in which the club heads are dis posed. The wall reflected waves reinforce the radiated waves thereby increasing cleaning effectiveness. The provision of two transducers for each club head insures adequate cleaning of each of the heads disposed in the line of wave motion generated by the transducers. It will be observed from FIG. 6 that the clubs are so disposed within the tank 10 that the pair of transducers for each club head beams the center of the waves against the striking face of each of thecl-ub heads.
To insure proper alignment of the club heads with the transducers, and also to support the clubs in the machine there is provided a golf club handle supporting plate 80 which is mounted at its lower edge upon the top 30 of the machine to extend upwardly therefrom parallel to the wall portion 38 of tank 10. The plate 80 may be secured to the top 30 in any convenient manner as by welding, hinging, or the like, and a bracket 82 may be secured between the top 30 and the plate to rigidify it. The upper face of plate 80 is provided with seven grooves, three of which are indicated at 84 in FIG. 1 for the tank 19, and two being indicated at' 86 for thetank 12. In cross-section the depressions are similar to the dis closure of FIG. 3. A golf club handle 16 is shown in FIG. 3 as resting in groove 86. FIG. '1 shows a pair of golf club handles extending out of tank 10 and resting in their depression in the plate 80. With the club handles in the depressions the clubs are lined up with the transducers associated with the tank 10. The depressions 86 for the tank 12 perform a similar function.
Each of the transducers is excited by a suitable high frequency oscillator generally indicated at 88 in FIG. 2. Each of the transducers is connected to the oscillator 88 by lead wires 90 which are connected to the acoustic wave generator portion 69 of the transducers. Oscillator 88 may be connected by cord f2 to a suitable source of line voltage. The oscillator is tuned to generate a pulsating voltage at the frequency at which it is desired to operate the transducers. It has been found that effective cleaning of the clubs is accomplished where a water base cleaning solution is used when the acoustic wave frequency is between 20 kc.s. and 25 kc.s. (ultrasonic) although frequencies between 10 kc.s. and kc.s. would be suitable.
As shown in FIG. 2 oscillator 88 is supported upon a removable floor portion 94 of floor 28, floor portion 94 being secured to floor 28 by fasteners 96 whereby the oscillator may be readily removed from the cabinet for servicing by tipping the cabinet forwardly and gaining access to the floor portion 94 from underneath with the cabinet in such tipped position.
The tank 12 is best shown in FIGS. 4, 5 and 7 and it comprises-a pair of front and rear walls 100 and 102 secured at their upper edges to the top 30 around the opening 34. To the lower edge of wall portion 109- there is a downwardly slanting front wall portion 104 generally paralleling wall portion 102 and terminating in a reversely inclined front wall 106. Wall 106 is stepped rearwardly as at 107, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 7, to a wall portion 108-. At the lower edge of wall portion 102 there is a downwardly extending wall portion 109 with wall portions 1% and 1% being parallel and terminating at a bottom wall portion 110. The ends of the tank 12 are closed by wall portions 114 and 116 as shown in FIGS. 4 and 7. v
The walls of tank 12 define a chute portion C opening upwardly through the top 30 and downwardly into the radiation pockets P and P", each of which pockets has an overhanging wall portion at 1134- and 109 similar to the overhanging portion 42 of pocket P, which overhanging portions tend to prevent loss of the acoustic waves from the pockets and confine the waves to the pockets so that the waves continually impinge on the golf club heads.
The rearward step 107 of front wall 106 provides means for spacing the clubs apart in stepped relation in tank 12 so that the four transducers 118, 120, 122 and 124 associated with the tank may beam waves in the solution generally perpendicular to the faces of the clubs disposed in the tank, as shown by the arrows in FIG. 7, without any substantial interference of a wave intended for one club face by the club head of the adjacent club.. It will be noted in FIG. 7 that the waves generated by the transducers are beamed directly toward opposite sides of each club head, and that the waves are directed such that some of them impinge directly upon the club faces.
It has been found that a solution of water and any one of a number of readilyavailable mild detergents provides a satisfactory cleaning solution.
The wall portions 3 8 and 102 of the tanks 10 and 12 and the grooves 84 and 86 in the plate 80 provide means defining a plane along which the shaft of a golf club lies 1f the club head is properly poistioned in the pockets. It will be noted in this connection that the pocket P and the aforementioned plane cooperably define a generally L-shape configuration similar to the configuration of a golf club, and that when theshaft of the club lies on such plane the head 14 of the club cannot lie in the pocket unlessit is substantially in the position shown in FIG. 2. It will also be noted that the wall portions 40 and 44 of tank 10 are adopted to underlie and support the head 14 of the clubs received in the pocket P and cooperate with wall portions 38 and the grooves 84 to properly position the club head in front of 42. The same is true in tank 12 where wall portions 11% and res underlie and support one golf club head 14 and wall portions 1% and I 11ft underlie and support another golf club 14 in stepped relation with wall petitions-166, 1% and 11d cooperating with wall portion 1G2 and the grooves 86 in plate so to position the club heads between walls 114, 1117 and 116 as shown in FIG. 7.
In order to drain fouled cleaning solution from tank 12 a drain line 52 similar to line 52 isprovided with extends to valve assembly 54.
What is claimed is:
1. In a golf club cleaning machine, a tank for receiving the heads of the golf clubs to be cleaned, said tank being shaped to provide a chute portion opening downwardly into a radiation reflecting pocket, said pocket having a downward facing wall portion opposite which club heads received downwardly through the chute and disposed the pocket are positioned, said pocket having a second wall portion disposed opposite the said downwardly facing wall portion to position the clubs in the pocket, and acoustic wave generator means mounted on a wall portion of the pocket, other than said second wall portion, which faces in the direction of a golf club head positioned in the pocket to generate and direct acoustic waves in a cleaning solution in the pocket toward the golf club head.
2. The invention as defined in claim 1 characterized in that the generator means is mounted on said downwardly facing wall to beam acoustic waves downwardly into the pocket and against club heads therein.
3. The invention as defined in claim 1 characterized in that one of the walls of said pocket is shaped to support a pair of similarly arranged club heads in spaced stepped relation, and said generator means comprise a plurality of acoustic wave generators mounted on the walls of the pocket to beam acoustic waves in a cleaning solution in the pocket substantially directly at the club faces.
4. The invention as defined in claim 1 characterized in that means are provided adjacent the chute for engaging the shaft of a golf club whose head is disposed in said pocket, said means disposedin such position in relation to the pocket that when a club shaft is supported by such means with the shaft extending completely through the chute, the head of the club is disposed wholly within the pocket.
5. In a golf club cleaning machine, a tank for containing a cleaning solution with the tank open at the top for a reception therein of the heads of a plurality of golf clubs with the handles of the clubs extending outwardly through the open top of the tank, acoustic wave generator means mounted on a wall of the tank opposite the heads of the clubs disposed in the tank, golf club positioning means for engaging the shafts of a plurality of clubs received in the tank and holding the clubs in spaced apart relation for exposing the individual faces thereof to the acoustic waves, and means in the tank for supporting the heads of the clubs spaced from said wall and cooper-ably with said positioning means positioning the club heads in the tank with the striking faces of the heads in front of said generator means. 1
6. A golf club cleaning machine comprising: a cabinet having closed side walls, a top wall for the cabinet provided with a pair of openings therein, -a pair of tanks in the cabinet with each connected to said top beneath one of the openings, each of said tanks having front, rear and end walls defining a downwardly extending chute adjacent each said opening and a radiation pocket below the chute,
. a plurality of acoustic wave generators mounted on one wall of one of the tanks adjacent the radiation pocket of the tank to direct acoustic waves through a cleaning solution in the radiation pocket and against golf club heads in the pocket, means in the radiation pocket of the other tank for supporting a golf club head spaced above another golf club head in such pocket, acoustic wave generating means mounted on the walls of the last mentioned tank to direct acoustic waves through cleaning solution in the radiation pocket thereof, and means in the cabinet for exciting said generating means.
. 7. In a golf club cleaning machine: a tank for containing a cleaning solution with the tank open at the top for reception therein of the head of a golf club with the handle of the club extending outwardly through the open top of the tank, an acoustic wave generator mounted on a wall of the tank in spaced relation above the bottom of the tank, golf club positioning means for engaging the shaft of the club, means in the tank for supporting the head of the club spaced from said wall of the tank upon which the generator is mounted and cooperably with said positioning means positioning the clubhead in the tank with the face of the club to be cleaned disposed in front of said generator.
8. The invention as defined in claim 7 characterized in that the bottom of the tank has a self-draining configuration and a drain port is provided at the bottom of the tank for draining contaminated cleaning solution and sludge from the tank.
References Cited in thefile of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,616,820 Bourgeaux Nov. 4, 1952 2,724,393 Heisc Nov. 22, 1955 2,891,176 Branson June 16, 1959 2,977,962 Zucker Apr. 4, 1961