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Publication numberUS3164972 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 12, 1965
Filing dateJan 6, 1964
Priority dateJan 6, 1964
Publication numberUS 3164972 A, US 3164972A, US-A-3164972, US3164972 A, US3164972A
InventorsSwanson Donald F
Original AssigneeWhirlpool Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Mounting for ice maker cutting grid
US 3164972 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jan 12 1965 D. F. swANsoN MOUNTING FOR ICE MAKER CUTTING GRID Filed Jan. 6. 1964 INVENTOR United States Patent' 0 3,164,972 y MUNTING FOR ECE MAKER CUTTHJG GRED Donald F. Swanson, St. Paul, Minn., assigner to Whirlpool Corporation, a corporation ot Delaware Filed dan. 6, 1964, Ser. No. 335,854 Claims. (Cl. 62-32tl) This invention relates to refrigeration apparatus and in particular to i maker apparatus.

In one well known form of ice maker apparatus, a slab of ice is formed on an evaporator plate as a result of flowing water over the plate while the plate is suitably refrigerated. The slab forming plate is conventionally slightly inclined permitting the formed slab to slide downwardly therefrom when suitably freed of the plate as by slightly heating the surface engaging the plate. The released slab is directed to fall onto a slab cutting means which functions tov cut the slab into a plurality of discrete portions or cubes. More specifically, the slab cutting means comprises a grid of wires which may be suitably electrically heated so as to cut into the slab resting thereon by melting the slab along intersection lines.

One problem which. has arisen in the use of such apparatus is that at times a relativelyrnoisy delivery of the slab onto the cutting means occurs. More specifically, the relatively heavy slab in falling onto the cutting means strikes the cutting means sharply to produce what is, in certain instances, an objectionable sound. Further, the relatively large quantity of kinetic energy in the falling slab produces substantial shock forces in the cutting means, which may result in damagethereto. Still further, the sharp striking of the slab against the cutting means has in certain instances caused a breaking of the slab, thereby resulting in improperly formed cubes.

The present invention comprehends an improved arrangement of such an ice maker apparatus eliminating the above discussed disadvantages of the presently known apparatus. rihus, a principal feature of the present invention is the provision of anew and improved `slab-type ice maker.

Another feature of the invention is the provision in such a slab-type icemaker of new and vimproved means for effectively minimizing noise developed by the falling of the ice slab onto the cutting means.

A further feature of the invention is the provision of such an ice maker having new and improved means for effectively preventing breakage of the slab as it is delivered onto the cutting means.`

Still another feature of the invention is the provision Y of such an ice maker having new and improved means for preventing damage to the cutting means as a result of the falling of the slab thereonto. Y v

i A yet further feature of the invention is the provision of such an ice maker having apparatus for forming a slab of ice and causing the formed slab to fall to a preselected space, apparatus for dividing the slab into discrete portions comprising slab cutting means, and means movably supporting the cutting means below the preselected space to receive the slab falling thereto'and including means for resiliently absorbing the kinetic energy of the falling slab. p

Other features and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following description taken in con nection with the accompanying drawing wherein:

FIGURE l is a perspective View of a portion of a slab ice maker provided with slab cutting structure embodying the invention;

FIGURE 2 is an enlarged fragmentary broken vertical section taken substantially along the line 2 2 of FIG- URE 1; and

FIGURE 3 is a further enlarged vertical section taken substantially along the line 3 3 of FIGURE 2.

,Nice

In the exemplary embodiment of the invention as disclosed in the drawing, a slab cutting apparatus generally designated i0 isrshown to comprise a portion of a slab` ice maker generally designated 11 including an evaporator plate 12 and a delivery'tube 13 for delivering water onto the plate l2 to form a slab S of ice on the upper surface of the plate. The plate is inclined downwardly slightly and the non-frozen water after flowing thereover is collected in a trough 14 at the lower end. 'Ihe water is conducted from the trough through a conduit 15 to a sump le wherein a pump 17 is provided for returning the water to the delivery device 13 through a conduit 13. Refrigerant is delivered to the evaporator 12 through a suitable conduit 19 which is periodically caused to conduct heated fluid to the evaporator for freeing the ice slab S from the evaporator and allowing it to slide dow-nwardly and fall therefrom (as shown by the dotted lines in FIGURE l) to the space 2Q, at the bottom of which is mounted the slab cutting means I0. Subjacent the slab cutting means is a collecting bin 2l for receiving the cut cubes.

The slab cutting means lll includes a frame 22 defining a rectangular central opening across which is extended a plurality of cutting wires 29 defining a grid. The wires are arranged to be suitably electrically heated so as to effectively cut through the slab S resting thereon and form the slab into a plurality of discrete portions comprising ice cubes VC which are then collected in the bin 2l. As indicated briefly above, the cutting means lil is disposed at the bottom of the space 2t) to which the slab S falls. To this end, the frame 22 is carried by a supporting means including a pair of rear supporting means generally designated 23 and a pair of forward supporting means generally designated 24. The supporting means 23 and 24 are suitably mounted on the walls of the apparatus such as side wall 25, as shown in FIGURE 3.

The support means 23 and 24 support the cutting means 10 to permit a movement thereof in the general direction of the falling slab S onto the cutting means. More speciiically, rear support means 23 comprises a clip 26 secured, such as to the wall 25, by spot welds 27, and a connecting rod 4S. Clip 26 includes a lower Uashaped portion 28. Connecting rod is provided with a lower turned end 3d extending pivotally through the fram 22, and an upper turned end 3i pivotally carried on the U- shaped portion 28 of clip 26. Thus, rear support means 23 is arranged for free pivotal movement of the rear portion of the slab cutting means It) about the axis of the turned portion 31 of the connecting rod 45.

The forward support means 24 effectively defines a snubber and includes a clip 32 iixedly secured to the ice maker cabinet structure, such as to wall 25, by suitable means such as welds 33. As best seen in FIGURE 3, the clip 32 comprises a U-shaped channel member having a down-turned leg 3d spaced outwardly from the inturned leg 35 which is secured to the wall 25. The forward support means 24 further includes a resilient block member 36 having an upper portion 37 secured to theY leg 34 by suitable means, such as screws 38, and a clamp plate 39,. The block 3e further defines a central opening 40 and a lower portion dll which is secured to the frame 22 by suitable means, such as screws 42, and a cooperating clamp plate d3. Illustratively, the block 36 may comprise a 5/16 inch by 21/2 inch by 3% inchblock of rubber provided with a l inch diameter hole 4i?. As `shown in FIGURE 2, the forward supports 24 dispose the forward end of the frame 22 slightly below the rearward end so that the cutting means is inclined downwardly in the forward direction. The forward end of the' frame 22 is defined by an upstanding wall portion 44 acting to limit the forward movement of the slab S as it falls onto the grid of wires 29.

Patented Jam-'12, 1965 The above described pivotal mounting of the rear portion of the cutting means and the resilient yieldable mounting of the forward portion thereof provides an improved mounting of the cutting means eleminating the serious disadvantages of the known slab cutting structures, as discussed briey above. More specically, support means 23 and 24 carry the slab cutting means for yieldable movement with the slab as the slab falls onto the cutting means, the movement of the cutting means being generally in the direction of the movement of the falling slab. Thus, the moving slab is decelerated without the shock inherent in the known structures. Further, the supporting means herein resiliently absorbs the kinetic energy of the falling slab and automatically converts it into potential energy for rest-oring the slab cutting means to the normal position at the bottom of the space 20. In this respect, the rear support portion 23 utilizes the upward swinging of the rear portion of the frame caused by the movement imparted to the cutting means by the falling slab permitting the rear portion to return automatically to the normal position shown in FIGURE 2 as a result of gravity acting thereon when the cutting means moves to its forward most position. The forward support means 24 resilently absorbs the kinetic energy and converts it into potential energy which then acts rearwardly to urge the cutting means back to the position of FIGURE 2.

As the support means 23 and 24 yieldably carry the cutting means, the noise of the slab striking the cutting means is effectively minimized and effectively precluded from passing through the support to the cabinet structure of the ice maker. Further, the yieldable support of the cutting means effectively nnimizes damage to the cutting means by the force of the falling slab and similarly effectively precludes breaking of the slab as a result of the falling thereof onto the cutting means. Thus, not only is the life of the apparatus substantially lengthened, but the ice cube product produced by the cutting means is elfectively assured a uniform cube-shaped characteristic.

While I have shown and described one embodiment of my invention, it is to be understood that it is capable of many modifications. Changes, therefore, in the construction and arrangement may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined in the appended claims.

The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:

1. In an ice maker having apparatus for forming a slab of ice and causing the formed slab to fall to a preselected space, apparatus for dividing the slab into discrete portions comprising:

slab cutting means; and

means movably supporting the cutting means below said preselected space to receive the slab falling there to and including means for resiliently absorbing the kinetic energy of the falling slab.

2. In an ice maker having apparatus for forming a slab of ice and causing the formed slab to fall to a preselected space, apparatus for dividing the slab into discrete portions comprising:

slab cutting means; and

means movably supporting the cutting means below said preselected space to receive the slab falling thereto i and including snubber means for elfectively minimizing the sound of the slab striking the cutting means.

3. In an ice maker having apparatus for forming a slab of ice and causing the formed slab to fall to a preselected space, apparatus for dividing the slab into discrete portions comprising:

slab cutting means; and

means swingably supporting the cutting means below said preselected space to receive the slab falling thereto and including means for resiliently absorbing the kinetic energy of the falling slab.

4. The ice maker apparatus of claim 3 wherein said supporting means 'includes means for freely swingably carrying one portion of the cutting means and said absorbing means comprises means for resistingly swingably carrying another portion of the cutting means.

5. The ice maker apparatus of claim 3 wherein said absorbing means comprises a snubber resistingly swingably supporting one portion of the cutting means.

6. In an ice maker having apparatus for forming a slab of ice and causing the formed slab to fall to a preselected space, apparatus for dividing the slab into discrete portions comprising:

slab cutting means; and

means movably supporting the cutting means at said preselected space to receive the slab falling thereto and including a block of resilient material supporting one portion of the cutting means for resiliently absorbing the kinetic energy of the falling slab.

7. The ice maker apparatus of claim 6 wherein said block is provided with a through hole in a mid-portion thereof.

8. In an ice maker having apparatus for forming a slab of ice and causing the formed slab to fall to a preselected space, apparatus for dividing the slab into discrete portions comprising:

slab cutting means; and

means movably supporting the cutting means below said preselected space to receive the slab falling thereto and move with the slab a substantial distance in the general direction of the movement of the falling slab.

9. In an ice maker having apparatus for forming a slab of ice and causing the formed slab to fall to a preselected space, apparatus for dividing the slab into discrete portions comprising:

slab cutting means;

means movably supporting the cutting means below said preselected space to receive the slab falling thereto and move with the slab a substantial distance in the general direction of the movement of the falling slab; and

means for returning the cutting means to the disposition below said space subsequent to said movement with the slab.

10. The ice maker apparatus of claim 9 wherein said returning means includes means for converting the kinetic energy of the slab into a potential energy for use in producing the returning force.

References Cited in the tile of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,125,216 Turney Jan. 19, 1915 2,078,445 Geyer Apr. 27, 1937 3,019,612 Jaeger Feb. 6, 1962

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1125216 *Mar 20, 1908Jan 19, 1915Artista Piano Player CoSupport for musical-instrument motors.
US2078445 *Aug 3, 1934Apr 27, 1937Gen Motors CorpResilient suspension for mechanical units
US3019612 *Dec 9, 1957Feb 6, 1962Carbonic Dispenser IncIce cube making machine
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3423949 *Apr 28, 1967Jan 28, 1969Schneider Metal Mfg CoAutomatic ice cube maker
US3707334 *Jan 12, 1971Dec 26, 1972Whirlpool CoWater pump with air lock breaking means
US4009595 *Feb 6, 1976Mar 1, 1977Whirlpool CorporationIce maker component mounting means
US4357807 *Jan 9, 1981Nov 9, 1982Jerry AleksandrowLow energy ice making apparatus
US4602489 *Dec 18, 1984Jul 29, 1986Hoshizaki Electric Co., Ltd.Automatic ice making machine
US4715194 *Oct 23, 1986Dec 29, 1987Hoshizaki Electric Co., Ltd.Ice making machine with water distributor
Classifications
U.S. Classification62/320, 62/466, 62/344
International ClassificationF25C1/12
Cooperative ClassificationF25C1/12
European ClassificationF25C1/12