US 3112114 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Nov. 26, 1963 w. H. JACOBS SEALING GASKET FOR BEVERAGE DISPENSERS 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Sept. 28. 1960 W. H. JACOBS SEALING GASKET FOR BEVERAGE DISPENSERS Nov. 26, 1963 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Sept. 28, 1960 W y flifna nqy United States Patent 3,112,114 SEAUNG GASKET FGR BEVERAGE DISPENSERS William H. Jacobs, Brookline, Mass. (195 Bear Hill Road, Waltham 54, Mass.) Filed Sept. 28, 19-50, Ser. No. 59,096 3 Claims. (Cl. 277-205) This invention relates to beverage dispensers of the type having a removable storage tank and a refrigerating element extending through an opening in the tank, and pertains more particularly to means for forming a liquidtight seal between the bowl and the refrigerating element.
Beverage dispensers of the general type here described include a stand, on which a refrigerating element is mounted, and a storage tank, having an opening to receive the refrigerating element, removably mounted on the stand. The tank ordinarily has a dispensing valve for drawing off portions of the beverage from the tank, and may also be equipped with a circulating or agitating device. Such dispensers are used in soda fountains, restaurants, and similar establishments. The tank is removable to permit cleaning. Some means is required for forming a liquidtight seal between the refrigerating element and the tank when the latter is in place on the stand. This seal is commonly provided by a gasket cemented or mechanically attached to the bowl.
The principal of this invention is to provide a gasket which will effectively seal the junction between the tank and the refrigerating element in a beverage dispenser of the type here described. Another object is to provide a gasket which requires no cement or complicated mechanical attaching means and which may be readily separated from both the tank and the refrigerating element. Other advantages and novel features of the invention will be apparent from the following description.
in the drawings illustrating the invention:
FIG. 1 is a side elevation of a beverage dispenser employing a gasket constructed according to the invention, certain parts in the region of the gasket being shown in cross-section;
FIG. 2 is a top plan view, somewhat enlarged, of the gasket as it appears when not installed;
FIG. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary cross-section of the gasket taken along line 3-3 of FIG. 2;
MG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary cross-section showing the gasket installed on the refrigerating element; and
PEG. 5 is an enlarged fragmentary cross-section of the gasket with the tank installed.
The dispenser is mounted on a. stand 14) which houses the compressor and other equipment necessary for refrigeration and the drive for the circulating device. As these elements are not a part of the present invention they are not shown in detail. The refrigerating element ill, in the form of a cylindrical heat-conductive jacket containing coils for circulation of refrigerant, is mounted on the stand and projects upward from a drip pan 12 which forms the top wall of the stand. The removable storage tank 13 is supported on the drip pan and has a circular opening in its bottom wall 13a through which the refrigerating element extends. The sealing gasket, generally indicated by the numeral '14, is disposed around the refrigerating element between the element and the edges of the circular opening in the bottom wall of the tank.
The dispenser also has an agitating or circulating pump l5, driven through a magnetic coupling by a suitable drive element in the stand. The pump circulates liquid up "ice through a standpipe 16. The tank also has a dispensing valve 17 for drawing off portions of beverage from time to time. These parts may be constructed as described in my copending application Serial No. 48,036, filed August 8, 1960. The tank has a cover 18.
The gasket 14 is made in one piece, of soft rubber or similar material, and has a generally tubular body portion 29, an inwardly extending flange 21, and an outwardly extending flange 22. The body has a thickened portion Ztl'a on its upper inside part, and has a number of circumferential fins 23 around the outside. Flange 21 has an upwardly projecting bead 24 around its inner rim, and flange 22 has an upwardly projecting outer rim 25.
The inside diameter of body portion 20 is somewhat smaller than the outside diameter of the refrigerating element 11, and the inside diameter of flange 21 is still smaller. For example, this flange may project inwardly about a quarter of an inch from the body in the unstressed condition of the gasket. The gasket is installed by pushing it down over the top of the refrigerating element. As this is done, flange 21 is stretched and bent upward, as indicated by the dotted outline 26 in FIG. 3. Body portion 24} is also stretched, causing flange 22 to bend downward, as indicated by the dotted outline 27 in FIG. 3. When the gasket is in its final position, around the bottom part of the refrigerating element, it appears as shown in FIG. 4. Portion 20a is compressed by the element and forms a tight seal. Flange 21 also embraces the element tightly, especially in the region of reinforcing rib 24. A liquid-tight seal is thus formed between the gasket and the refrigerating element.
The tank 13 is installed by lowering over the refrigerating element and pressing it down around flange 22 of the gasket. The proportions of the gasket are such that its overall thickness when flange 22 is bent down and engaging fins 23, is greater than the spacing between the refrigerating element and the surrounding edge of wall 13a of the tank. The tank is pressed down on to rim 25, which lies horizontal in its final position. The resulting compression of fins 23 forces flange 22 tightly against the adjacent edge of wall 13a forming a liquid-tight seal when the tank is in place. However, because fins 23 are free to bend as well as yield to compression, it is easier to slide the tank on and off a gasket of this construction than it would be in the case of a solid gasket of comparable thickness.
When the dispenser is to be cleaned, the tank is removed first, then the gasket is removed from the refrigerating element. The gasket, when removed, springs back to its original shape, leaving all its surfaces accessible for cleaning. The portions of the tank and refrigerating element which engage the gasket are entirely exposed so that they may be thoroughly cleaned. There are no inaccessible joints or crevices.
This gasket construction eliminates the complicated moldings sometimes used around the tank opening. A simple flat rim around the opening is adequate for forming the seal.
What is claimed:
1. In a beverage dispenser: the combination of a generally cylindrical refrigeration element, a removable tank having an opening through which said element extends, and an elastic sealing gasket surrounding said element and removably engaged with said element and tank; said gasket comprising a tubular body portion having an upper end and a first and a second flange extending from said upper end, said first flange extending axially upward and embracing said element, and said second flange extending downward around said body portion and through 3 said opening and engaging said tank, said first flange in the unassembled state of the gasket being adapted to extend inward to a diameter smaller than that of said cicment and said second flange being adapted to extend outward.
2. The combination described in claim 1, said body portion having at least one external circumferential fin spaced downward from the upper end of said body portion engaging said second flange.
3. The combination described in claim 1, said second flange having a lip underlying said tank around said opening.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Pen-0w July 24, l95l