US 3213994 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 26, 1965 H- J. HOHLER COIN OPERATED ENGINE HEATER Filed NOV. 23, 1964 INVENTOR Herbert 11H /7/ 1 United States Patent ()fiice 3,213,994 Patented Oct. 26, 1965 l 3,213,994 COIN OPERATED ENGINE HEATER Herbert J. Hohler, RR. 1, Tracy, Minn. Filed Nov. 23, 1964, Ser. No. 412,936 1 Claim. (Cl. 194-4.)
This invention relates generally to coin operated meters, and more'specifically to a coin operated electricity dispensing meter for use in heating the engine of parked cars, or for the actuation of other power operated equipment such as truck refrigerators etc.
The problem of starting vehicles that must be left out in the open during cold weather is well known to everyone. There is a distinct need for some means for the owners of such vehicles to obtain heat or power so that their engine will readily start when desired. A similar problem exists for refrigerated trucks wherein the refrigeration must be continued while the vehicle is parked. It is a primary object of this invention to provide a coin operated electric power dispensing machine for locating in parking areas and it will serve to solve the above mentioned problems.
A further object of this invention is to provide a coin operated electric power dispensing machine which may be pre-set at will to dispense power for any chosen period of time and starting at any hour of the day or night.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a coin operated machine for parking lots which is designed to operate an engine heating device and can be set to warm the engine immediately prior to the required use of the vehicle.
A full understanding of the details of the invention, together with further advantages, will become apparent by reference to the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment thereof, taken in conjunction with the attached drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a side elevation of a passenger vehicle utilizing the engine heater metering device which comprises my invention.
FIG. 2 is a plan view of a typical parking lot wherein an engine heater meter is positioned adjacent a conventional parking meter for use if and when desired.
FIG. 3 is a front elevation of the electric power dispensing meter and associated connected engine heating device for carrying out one of the objectives of this invention.
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary side elevation of the coin operated meter.
FIG. 5 is a cross sectional side elevation taken through the locking device along the lines 5-5 of FIG. 3.
FIG. 6 is a cross sectional plan view of the locking device taken along the lines 6-6 of FIG. 3.
FIG. 7 is a diagrammatic lay-out of the wiring diagram involved in the construction of this invention.
Similar reference characters indicate corresponding parts throughout the several views in the drawing.
Referring now to the drawings in detail, the numeral 10 represents a passenger vehicle parked against a stop 11 and being connected with a coin operated engine heater device 12 in accordance with the invention. FIG. 2, shows a plan view of several adjacent parking spaces 13 having stops such as 11 aligned with each other at one end, and further provided with parking meters 14 in a conventional manner. An engine heater device and meter such as 12 is located adjacent one of the parking :meters 14 for dispensing electric power on a metered system for anyone requiring such service.
The meter of this invention comprises a substantially rectangular container 15 having a bushing 16 secured normally to one end. A support pipe 17 is seated in the bushing 16 and supports the container 15 at a conventional height above the ground where it is secured by a flanged bushing 18 suitably bolted at 19 to a ground plate 20. The pipe 17 forms a conduit through which power is supplied to the meter by means of wires 21 as clearly seen in FIG. 3. Mounted on the other end of the container 15 is a coin receiving standard 22 having a circular opening 23 formed therein to receive coins.
Mounted in the upper portion of the container is an electric clock 24 which is constantly in operation to indicate the time of day. The face of the clock is visible through the side 25 of the container. The lower portion of the container contains a timing meter 26 which has a front face graduated in hours as indicated at 27, one side of the face relating the hours am. and the other side marked with hours in the pm. A pointer 28 is mounted for rotation centrally of the timing meter and a knob 29 projecting outwardly through the cover 30 so as to per mit the setting of the meter to initiate a heating cycle at any desired time of day or night.
A cable junction 31 communicates through the bushing 16 for dispensing the purchased power through a flexible cable 32 which connects with any desired type of engine heater unit. By way of example I have shown an electric blanket 33, but it will be appreciated that other types of engine block heating units can be substituted as desired. The electric blanket 33 has resistance wiring 34 threaded therein which extends outwardly through a cable 35 terminating with a plug 36. The plug 36 en gages in a socket 37 which forms the termination of the flexible cable 32. The socket and plug each have a peripheral sleeve 38 secured therearound which terminates with a small radial flange 39 adapted to abut with each other when the plug is received in the socket. A padlock 40 has a U shaped arm 41 lockably retained therein. A small groove 42 is formed around the inner periphery of the arm 41 and is adapted to engage about the flanges 39 and so ensure that the plug and socket are permanently connected and that the heating device cannot readily be stolen.
Referring to FIG. 7, the timing meter 26 actuates a solenoid coil 43 which closes contacts 44 and permits power from the wires 21 to feed the cable 32 for dispensing power. The coil will remain actuated for the number of hours which has been paid for by inserting coins into the device and the time at which this power will be initiated will be that indicated by the pointer 28 which has been set by the user. In operation then the person desiring to use this equipment will place the heating device in position and will set the timing meter 26 to the hour of the day at which he wishes to commence heating his vehicle. He then places coin into the machine to purchase the number of hours of electric power which he desires to use. In this way he can be assured that his vehicle will be warm by the time he plans to use it.
Having described the invention in a preferred form, it will be appreciated that some modifications may be made to the precise configuration, without departing from the scope or spirit of the invention, as defined by the following claim.
A coin operated electric power dispensing device for parked vehicles comprising, a meter container having a power supply line and a power delivery cable, a pipe sup porting the container above the ground, an electric clock mounted for visual inspection in one section of said container, an electric timer carried Within said container having graduations marked thereon to indicate the time of day and night at which the power dispensing may be initiated, a knob for setting said timer to any desired hour, a coin operated mechanism connected to said timer for receiving payment for a desired period of power dispensing, a solenoid switch connected between said power