US 3132657 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
y 12, 1964 A. P. CICCONE 3,132,657
APPARATUS FOR CLEANING DENTURES AND OTHER ARTICLES Filed Nov. 15, 1962 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Ticla INVENTOR ANTHONY P- CICCONE May 12, 1964 A. P. ClCCONE 3,132,657
APPARATUS FOR CLEANING DENTURES AND OTHER ARTICLES 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Nov. 15, 1962 INVENTOR AT RNEY United States Patent The present invention relates to a cleaning apparatus,
and, more particularly, to improved apparatus for cleaning dentures and other articles.
Heretofore, dentures were cleaned at home by soaking the same in a cleaning solution or by brushing the dentures with a cleansing paste or solution. These methods are inadequate to effectively clean dentures because dentures have many minute openings which are difiicult to penetrate with a solution or paste or properly clean the same. Also, the plastic resins used for dentures have some surface porosity which is readily seen under magnification and the cleaning medium must likewise penetrate those pores to remove odors therefrom.
Accordingly, an object of the present invention is to provide a denture cleaner wherein agitation of a cleaning solution is eifected in an improved manner to properly clean dentures.
Another object is to provide a denture cleaner having improved means for effecting such agitation of the cleaning solution.
Another object is to provide such a denture cleaner which is safe and will not damage the dentures or inflict injury to the user of the cleaner.
Another object is to provide such a denture cleaner wherein the dentures are cleaned in a container removably mounted on a stand to facilitate cleaning of the container.
A further object is to accomplish the foregoing in a simple, practical and economical manner.
Other and further objects of the invention will be obvious upon an understanding of the illustrative embodiment about to be described, or will be indicated in the appended claims, and various advantages not referred to herein will occur to one skilled in the art upon employment of the invention in practice.
A preferred embodiment of the invention has been chosen for purposes of illustration and description, and is shown in the accompanying drawings, forming a part of the specification, wherein:
FIG. 1 is a vertical sectional view of a denture cleaner in accordance with the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a sectional view taken along the line 22 on FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along the line 33 on FIG. 1.
Referring to the drawings in detail, cleaning apparatus is shown which generally comprises a cup-shaped container 10 for cleaning solution, a support such as a stand 11 for the container, and a source of power such as a motor 12 in the stand for driving a propeller 14 in the container.
The container has a bottom 15 formed with a circular well 16 for closely confining the propeller 14, and a side wall 17 extending upwardly from the bottom flared at a small angle, for example, five degrees. The side wall is formed with a series of alternate circumferentially arranged arc and chord portions 18 and 19 of the same circle which are effective to produce a desired action in the cleaning solution when agitated by the propeller. The are and chord portions are of substantially equal circumferential extent, and each portion extends upwardly from the bottom between a pair of vertical planes intersecting each other and the central vertical axis of the side wall. As the propeller swirls the solution to produce a "ice central vortex, the solution rises when it contacts the arc portions 18 and descends when it contacts the chord portions 19 to produce a Wavy flow at the surface of the solution which entrains air and carries it into contact with the dentures. In practice, it has been found that three are and chord portions produce this desired action.
It has been found that both large and small dentures can be cleaned by providing an arrangement whereby the well 16 can have a large or a small diameter, respectively. Generally, such an arrangement comprises an annular recess in the bottom 17 which surrounds the well to provide the large diameter and a removable collar adapted to be placed in and fill the recess to provide the small diameter. Preferably, this is accomplished by providing the bottom 17 with an annular-zone 20, inclined towards the well 16 and within a flat annular zone 21 surrounding the zone 20, to spread the swirling solution outwardly when large dentures are being cleaned, and by providing a collar or ring 22 having an annular inclined zone 23 seated on the zone 20 and having an inner upright annular wall 24 which extends the well 16 upwardly to thereby confine the swirling of the solution when small dentures are being cleaned. The collar 22 is removably secured to the bottom 17 by cooperating pins 25 and recesses 26 on the zones 20 and 23 so that it is held in place when small dentures are being cleaned and can be readily removed when large dentures are being cleaned;
The container is provided with one or more screens for supporting the dentures and/or preventing the propeller from damaging the dentures or inflicting injury to the user of the apparatus. Such an arrangement may include a screen 27 extending across the well 16 having a depending portion 28 at its periphery seated on the zone 21, for spacing it therefrom. The screen 27 serves to support the dentures and may have a side wall so that this screen is in the shape of a basket.
If desired, the container may be provided with a cover 29.
The container 10 and stand 11 may be integrally formed or secured, but preferably they are removably coupled to facilitate thorough cleaning of the container without wetting the motor 12 in the stand. This is accomplished by providing circumferentially spaced upwardly extending tabs or projections 30 on the top of the stand and providing a collar 31 on the bottom of the container adapted to be gripped by the projections 30. The collar 31 has fiat outer surfaces thereon and the tabs 30 have fiat inner surfaces for engaging the flat surfaces of the collar to prevent relative rotation between the stand 11 and'the container 10 when the power source 12 is effective to drive the propeller 14. Also, provision is made for coupling and uncoupling the propeller 14 and the motor 12. This is accomplished by mounting the propeller on a shaft 32 which is rotatably mounted in a bearing 34 in the bottom of the well and extends downwardly, securing a cup 35 to the lower end of the shaft 32, and providing the motor with a drive shaft 36 extending upwardly from the stand having a plug 37 secured at its upper end adapted to be inserted into the cup 35 and gripped thereby.
In order to facilitate alignment with and insertion of the plug 37 into the cup 35, the projections 30 extend above the plug and the collar 31 extends below the cup, whereby the collar is first gripped by the tabs to align the container and stand so that the plug thereafter enters the cup without difliculty.
It has been found that a vortex can be established in a container having a diameter of about four inches filled with cleaning solution at a level of one inch, and a three blade propeller having a three quarter inch radius, the blades having a width of about three eighths of an inch, and rotated at a speed of about 2000 r.p.m.
This vortex action entrains air to aerate the cleaning From the foregoing description, it will be seen that the present invention provides improved cleaning apparatus which is simple, practical and economical in construction, and is effective and reliable inoperation. The apparatus is compact and light in weight but yet is sufiiciently rugged to withstand such rough usage to which it may normally be subjected.
As various changes may be made in the form, construction and arrangement of the parts herein, without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention and without sacrificing any of its advantages, it is to be understood that all matter herein is to be interpreted as illustrative and not in any limiting sense.
This application is a continuation-in-part application of co-pending application Serial No. 94,597, filed March 9, 1961, now abandoned.
1. Apparatus comprising a cup-shaped container for cleaning solution having a side wall and having a bottom formed with a well, an annular zone inclined towards said well and in communication therewith, and a flat annular zone surrounding said inclined zone; a removable collar having an annular inclined zone seated on said first mentioned inclined zone, a flat annular zone for extending said first mentioned flat zone inwardly, and an upright annular inner zone for extending said wall upwardly; a propeller in said well; a source of power connected to said propeller for driving the same; and means above said Well for supporting an article thereon.
2. Apparatus according to claim 1, wherein said inclined zones havecooperating meansfor removably securing said collar to said container.
3. Apparatus comprising a cup-shaped container for cleaning solution having a side wall and having a bottom formed with a well provided with an upright cylindrical wall, an annular recess surrounding said well, and an upwardly facing annular zone surrounding said recess;
- an annular removable collar mounted in said recess to fill the same, said collar having an upwardly facing annular zone in alignment with saidfirst mentioned upwardly facing annular zone and an upright cylindrical wall in alignment with said upright wall of said well; a propeller in said well; a source of power connected to said propeller for driving the same; and means above said well for supporting an article thereon.
4. Apparatus according to claim 3, wherein said recess and said collar have cooperating means for removably securing said collar to said container.
5. Apparatus comprising a cup-shaped container for cleaning solution having a bottom formed with a well and having a collar at the lower end .thereof, a propeller in said well and rotatably mounted on said bottom and having a shaft extending downwardly of said bottom, a coupling member on the lower end of said propeller shaft, a stand structurally independent of said container for removably supporting said container and having circumferentially spaced upright tabs adapted to receive and grip said container collar to effect removable securement of said container and said stand, a source .of power in said stand having an upwardly extending drive shaft, and a coupling member at the upper end of said last mentioned shaft for removably engaging said coupling member on said propeller shaft, said tabs and collar being arranged to first effect engagement therebetween upon securement of said container to said stand and guide said coupling members into engagement with each other after initial engagement between said tabs and said collar has been eifected, said container collar having flat outer surfaces thereon and said tabs having fiat inner surfaces for engaging said flat surfaces of said collar to prevent relative rotation between said stand and said container when said power source is effective to drive said propeller.
6. Apparatus comprising a container for cleaning solution having a bottom and having a generally circular side wall formed with a series of alternate circumferentially arranged arc and chord portions of the same circle, said arc and chord portions being of substantially equal circumferential extent with each portion extending upwardly from said bottom between a pair of vertical planes intersecting each other and the central vertical axis of said side wall; a propeller adjacent said bottom and being rotatable at a speed to swirl the cleaning solution to produce a central vortex and to cause the swirling solution to rise as it contacts said are portions and to descend as it contacts said chord portions; a source of power connected to said propeller for driving the same at the aforementioned speed; and means above said propeller for supporting an article thereon to be contacted by the rising and descending swirling solution.
7. Apparatus according to claim 6, wherein said side wall is flared upwardly at a small angle.
8. Apparatus according to claim 6, wherein said side wall is dimensioned to contain a volume of solution having a greater diameter than height.
9. Apparatus according to claim 6, wherein said side wall has three arc portions and three chord portions.
10. Apparatus according to claim 6, wherein said last mentioned means includes a screen.
ll. Apparatus according to claim 10, wherein said screen is in the shape of a basket.
2,342,742 Loeb Feb. 29, 1944 Rogers Jan. 9, 1934-