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Publication numberUS3316577 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 2, 1967
Filing dateMar 1, 1965
Priority dateMar 1, 1965
Also published asDE1938635U
Publication numberUS 3316577 A, US 3316577A, US-A-3316577, US3316577 A, US3316577A
InventorsJoseph F Kravos
Original AssigneeGen Electric
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Battery-powered clothes brush
US 3316577 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

May 2, 1967 J. F. KRAvos 3,316,577

BATTERY-POWERED CLOTHES BRUSH Filed March l, 1965 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 May 2, 1967 J. F. KRAVOS BATTERYPowERED CLOTHES BRUSH 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed March l, 1965 United States Patent() 3,316,577 BATTERY-POWERED CLOTHES BRUSH Joseph F. Kravos, Chesterland, Ohio, assignor to General Electric Company, a corporation of New York Filed Mar. 1, 1965, Ser. No. 435,835 11 Claims. (Cl. 15-23) This invention concerns a battery-powered clothes brush and, more particularly, a compact, self-powered device for effectively removing dirt and lint particles from garments or other surfaces.

Various mechanically and electrically powered devices have been proposed by the prior art for removing dirt and lint particles from clothing. Although brushes or suction air flow have been employed singly, the most effective removal of particles is accomplished by the combination of both techniques. As a Iresult, an impasse has `been encountered in efforts to reduce the size of the cleaner to a more acceptable compact package by the necessity of including a vacuum-inducing fan member in addition to a rotating brush for effectively dislodging and disposing of dirt and lint particles from garments and other surfaces. Furthermore, to achieve improved cleaning effectiveness it would kbe desirable to have a substantially self-cleaning brush so that dirt or lint particles which tend to adhere to the brush would be eliminated therefrom. It would also be desirable to be able to clean entangled threads from the brush while the brush is mounted within the cleaner, or to be able to easily withdraw the brush for cleaning or replacing the same. An additional improvement would be to substantially neutralize the static electric charge on the rotating brush produced by the brush contact with a surface.

It is therefore one object of this invention to provide an improved, more compact cleaner for effectively removing dirt and lint particles from surfaces.

Another object is to provide clothes cleaning apparatus which employs a unique structure for establishing an air flow pattern for effectively sweeping up and depositing lightweight dirt and lint particles into a collection-chamber.

A further object is to provide a clothes cleaning apparatus having a brush which is easily cleaned while mounted within the apparatus, or easily withdrawn for cleaning or for inserting a replacement.

Still Ianot-her object is to provide a clothes cleaning apparatus which neutralizes the effect of static charge produced by brushing contact with garments.

In accordance with this invention in one form thereof, a palm size molded plastic housing is structurally designed -to receive a rotating brush which projects outwardly through a nozzle in one wall of the housing. Air ingestion means and a `discharge gap are disposed relative to the rotating brush and the nozzle to achieve a pumping or vacuum effect which assists the -brush in sweeping up lightweight dirt and lint particles and disposing of these particles which are normally unaffected by conventional centrifugal discharge apparatus. The housing is also structurally arranged to define a collection-chamber adjacent the discharge orifice into which the dirt and lint particles are deposited, and a series of filtered outlet passages throug-h the housing are provided to enable a continuous air flow through the clothes cleaner.

The invention encompasses the features of a clothes cleaner housing in combination with the compact Iarrangement of internal components which will be more fully understood by reference to the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, of which:

FIG. l is a perspective view of the compact clothes brush when manually grasped during operation thereof;

FIG. 2 is an elevation view in section showing the components and their Iarrangement within the compact clothes brush;

FIG. 3 is a vertical section view along the lines 3 3 Iof the elevation view of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view in section illustrating the air flo-w pattern through the clothes cleaner as induced by the unique construction thereof;

FIG. 5 is van enlarged elevation view in section of the brush retainer member which is releasably secured to the housing for permitting manual rotation or withdrawal of the brush;

FIG. 6 is a left end view of the battery-powered clothes bmsh with the Ibrush retainer member removed.

Referring to FIG. l, the compact clothes cleaner is illustrated being manually held by the housing 1 during normal operation. It can readily be appreciated that the relative compactness and the self-powered aspect facilitates convenient use of the clothes cleaner under a wide range of conditions.

The arrangement of the components which permits such a compact cleaner are more clearly indicated in the remaining figures. The housing 1 is composed of a housing base-portion 1a and a housing cover-portion 1b, between which the cleaner components are secured. FIG. 2 illustrates the components as they are mounted on the housing base-portion 1a with the housing cover-portion 1b removed. A cylindrical brush 2 is disposed within the housing 1 along the top wall WT thereof. The brush consists of a plurality of bristles b secured between a pair of helically twisted wires w1.

The left end of the brush 2 is releasably supported in a brush retainer member 3 which is, in turn, releasably attached in an aperture Ab through the left wall WL of Vthe housing 1. As indicated in FIG. 5, the retainer member 3 is comprised of a hollow retainer casing 3a which has spherical bearing pocket 3d within the hollow central portion thereof. The bearing pocket 3d supports a spherical journal portion of a rotator member 3c. The rotator member 3c has an outwardly directed face plate Fp which can be manually turned for rotating the brush 2. One end of the brush wires w1 and W2 are releasably secured within the opposite end of the rotator member 3c, c which has a firs-t thread guard g1 positioned thereon for preventing threads or thread particles from entering the bearing pocket 3d. A pair of studs 3e are positioned on vthe outer peripheral surface of the retainer casing 3a and project through the recess r1 and r2, as indicated in FIG. 6, on ythe peripheral edge of the housing aperture Ab for engaging the inner surface of the housing left wall WL when the retainer is twisted after being inserted into the aperture Ab. The engagement between the studs 3e and the inner surface of the housing left wall WL operates to secure the retainer 3 within the housing 1. The right end of the crush 2 is releasably supported in and secured for rotation with a brush drive shaft `4. A second thread guard g2 is fixed to the left end of the drive shaft 4 to prevent thread or dust particles from passing into the compartment S which is separated from the brush 2 by a first vertical partition member 6 on each of the housing-portions 1a and 1b.

A face gear member 7 is secured to the drive shaft 4 near the right end thereof, and is positioned for meshed engagement with -a pinion 8. The pinion 8 is fixedly secured on the rotating shaft of an electric motor 9 which is, in turn, positioned adjacent the right end wall of the housing 1 and is retained by a rubber spacer member S. A casing extension 9a from the motor 9 supports the right end of the drive shaft -4 and thereby maintains the face gear 7 and the pinion 8 in continuous meshed engagement.

A rechargeable battery B is disposed within the housing 1 adjacent the bottom wall WB there-of. The battery B is also secured between the housing-portions 1a and 1b, and is electrically lconnected to a pair of contact members 10 and 11 which extend outwardly through the housing wall to contact recharging apparatus (not shown). A switching element 12 is disposed on a stud member 13 projecting from the housing base portion 1a and positioned along the left end wall WL of the housing 1. A switch button 14 extends through the left end wall WL of the housing, and a cam member 15 attached 'to the switch button 14 operates to engage and disengage the switch element 12 with the battery B. Electrical conductors C1 and CZ complete the circuit between the battery B and the motor 9 upon engagement and disengagement of the switch element 12 for operating the motor 9 and, consequently, for rotating the brush 2.

A collection-chamber 16 is centrally disposed iwi-thin the housing 1. As illustrated in FIG. 3, the chamber 16 is defined on the lower side by the brush 2 and a brush enclosure member 17 formed integrally with the inner surface of the housing cover-portion 1b. The chamber 16 is defined on the right end by the first vertical partition member `6, on the lower side by a horizontal partition member 1'8, on the left end by a second vertical partition member 19, and on the front and rear sides by the inner surfaces of the housing coverand base-portions 1b and 1a, respectively. The first and second vertical partition members 6 and 19, and the horizontal partition member 18 are formed by complementary shelf structures on the housing baseand cover-portions, 1a and 1b.

The physical relationship between the brush 2 and the collection-chamber 16 can be clearly appreciated by reference to FIGS. 3 and 4. When the housing base-portion 1a and the housing cover-portion 1b are joined to form the over-all housing 1, the brush 2 is substantially enclosed by the interior surfaces of the housing portions, 1a and 1b, and by the brush enclosure extension 17 formed integrally with the inner surface of the housing coverportion 1b and which conforms to `a portion of the peripheral surface of the brush 2. A pair of recessed edge portions 20 and 21 along the top edge of the housing baseand cover-por-tions, 1a and 1b, respectively, define a rectangular nozzle N through which the peripheral surface of the brush 2 projects.

A scroll member 22 is attached to the interior surface of the housing base-portion 1a to form a smooth curvilinear surface which defines a discharge slot or gap G with the -tip of the brush enclosure extension 17. The gap G is substantially tangentially oriented to the rotating brush 2 so that air carried along with the brush is impelled outwardly through the -tangentially oriented discharge gap G.

Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4 which illustrate the clothes cleaner with the housing portions 1a and 1b assembled, the housing cover-portion 1b has a clean-out door 23 releasably hinged and latched thereto for providing ready access to lthe collection-chamber 16 for disposing of the accumulated particles. A plurality of air exhaust slots 24 are provided through the clean-out door 23 and a first filtering membrane 25 on the inner surface of the door 23 covers the door slots 24 to preclude discharge of particles out through the door slots to prevent their redisposition on the garment. A second plurality of slots 26 are disposed through the housing base-portion 1b above the horizontal partition member 18 and below the scroll member 22 through which air may be exhausted from the collection-chamber 16. A second filtering membrane 27 on the inner surface of the housing base-portion 1a covers the base-portion slots 26 for excluding discharge of dirt particles therethrough.

The brush 2, when rotating counterclockwise as indicated in FIGS. 3 and 4, establishes a rotating air flow pattern which is exhausted through the tangentially oriented discharge gap G. A suction force is created at the nozzle N by virtue of the Bernoulli-effec-t produced by liuid flowing thereby. The suction tends to draw the garment into the nozzle, thus cutting off the air fiow around the brush 2. The lightweight dirt and lint particles are not thereafter carried through the discharge gap G, but remain on the rotating brush to be deposited back on the garment and to carry with them the accumulated static electric charge.

To provide a continuous supply of air for sweeping past the nozzle to aid in extracting particles from a garment, a first plurality of air inlet apertures 28 are provided lthrough a first canted surface portion S1 on the top wall WT of the housing 1 adjacent the nozzle side 21 where the brush periphery leaves the housing. The canted orientation of the surface S1 relative to the nozzle N insures that the garment will not cover the first inlet apertures 28. The inlet apertures 28 have their axes a1 oriented radially inwardly to also insure that the air is not impelled outwardly therethrough. If desired, a similarly oriented slot may be used instead of a plurality of apertures.

To provide an additional supply of air for sweeping the dirt and lint particles from the brush 2 to effect selfcleaning, a second plurality of air inlet apertures 29 are provided through a second canted surface portion S2 on the top wall WT adjacent the nozzle side 20 where the brush periphery re-enters the housing. The canted orientation of the surface S2 similarly insures that ythe garment will not cover the second inlet apertures 29, and the axes a2 of the apertures 29 are also radially oriented relative to the brush 2.

The unique structure comprising the air inlet apertures 28 and 29 adjacent the nozzle N, the tangentially oriented discharge gap G between the brush enclosure extension 17 and the scroll 22, the accessible collection-chamber 16, the filtering membranes 25 and 27, and the discharge slots 24 and 26 capitalizes on the rotary motion of the brush to provide a continuous filtered fiow of air through the cleaner. The air flow continues through the air inlet apertures 28 and 29 even while the nozzle N is completely covered by the garment being cleaned. It can also be appreciated that the bristle sweeping action yagainst the cloth in combination with air iiow induced through the rst inlet apertures 28 by the rotating brush operates to pick up dirt and lint particles from the garment, and the additional air flow induced through the second inlet apertures 29 `provides a greater air mass for separating from the brush the dirt and lint particles of small mass which are normally retained in the brush and are deposited back on the garment where they build up a static electric charge at the nozzle. The static electric charge is `also reduced by the apertures 28 and 29 which reduces the amount of possible surface contact between the garment and the cleaner. The structural feature of the retainer 3 and the manual rotator face plate FP en-able manual rotation of the brush '2 to enable removal of threads that have become entangled between the bristles. The removable feature of the retainer also enables easy removal of the brush for more thorough cleaning or for replacing the bnush without disassembling the housing 1.

By employing the unique stnucture of this invention, the brush is self-cleaned, static electric change is reduced, and a vacuum-effect is achieved without having to ernploy a separate pumping' member, thereby providing a more compact, effective clothes cleaner which is easily handled and stored.

As is evident from the foregoing description, certain aspects of my invention are not limited to the particular construction details of the example illustrated, and I contemplate that various and other modifications and applications will ocour to those skilled in the art and to those who employ my invention. It is therefore my intention that the appended claims shall encompass such modifications and applications which do not depart from the true spirit and scope of my invention.

What I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent of the United States is:

1. A compact cleaner apparatus comprising:

(a) a hollow housing having an inside surface and an outside surface, said housing having a nozzle opening therethrough; a 'brush chamber, a dirt collecting chamber, and a motor chamber located in said hous- 111g;

(b) a rotatable generally cylindrical bnush mounted within said housing and positioned adjacent said nozzle so that a peripheral portion of said Ibrush projects outwardly through said nozzle; a motor whose sole output is connected to said brush;

(c) the inside surface of said housing conforming to the shape of said brush and said brush establishing a rotating air flow pattern within said housing;

(d) first aperture means in said housing for admitting a first air ow into the portion of said housing adjacent said brush, said first air flow being caused as a result of a suction force created by said rotating air flow pattern, said rst air flow `being impelled past said nozzle by the rotation of said brush for ingesting dirt particles into said housing and said brush;

(e) second aperture means in said housing for admitting a second air flow into the portion of said housing surrounding said brush, said second air flow Ibeing caused as a result of a suction force created -by said rotating air flow pattern;

(f) means for discharging the combined first and second air flows and said dirt particles away from said brush into said dirt collecting chamber;

(g) means for filtering said dirt particles from said combined first and second air flows; and

(h) aperture means extending through the inside and outside surfaces of said housing for exhausting said combined first and second air flows from said housing.

2. A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim 1 wherein said means in said housing adjacent Ia first side of said nozzle for admitting a first air flow into said housing comprises at least one aperture through said housing, said aperture having its axis substantially radially oriented relative to said brush whereby the rotary motion of said -bnush draws air int-o said housing through said aperture.

3. A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim 1 wherein said means in said housing adjacent a first side of said nozzle for admitting a first air flow into said housing comprises a plurality of apertures through the surface of said housing adjacent said first side of said nozzle, said surface being canted away from said nozzle and from the surface being cleaned, and said apertures having their axes radially oriented relative to said brush whereby the rotary motion of said -brush draws air into said housing through said apertures.

4. A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim 3 wherein said apertures for admitting said first air flow into said housing are spaced from said nozzle in a direction opposite to the direction of rotation of said brush whereby said first air iiow induced through said apertures is impelled past said nozzle by the rotation of said brush.

5. A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim 1 wherein said means in said housing adjacent a second side of said nozzle for ladmitting a second air flow into said housing comprises at least one aperture through said housing, said aperture having its axis substantially radially oriented relative to said brush whereby the rotary motion of said brush draws air into said housing through said aperture.

6. A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim 5 wherein said aperture for admitting said second air flow into said housing is spaced from said nozzle in the `direction of rotation of said lbrush whereby said second air flow combines with said first air flow.

7. A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim 1 wherein said means in said housing adjacent a second side of said nozzle for admitting a second air flow into said housing comprises a plurality of apertures through the surface of said housing adjacent said second side of said nozzle, said surface being canted away from said nozzle and from the surface being cleaned, and said apertures having their axes radially oriented relative to said Ibnush whereby the rotary motion of said brush draws air into said housing through said apertures.

8, A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim i1 wherein said means for discharging the combined first and second air flows and said dirt particles away from said brush comprises a br-ush enclosure member projecting from a first interior wall of said housing and conforming to a peripheral portion of said brush, the end of said `brush enclosure member Ibeing spaced from a second wall, and a scroll member within said housing, said scroll member being attached to `an interior surface of said housing and substantially tangentially oriented to said brush, said scroll and the end of said brush enclosure -member forming a tangentially oriented discharge gap through which said first and second air flows and said dirt particles are impelled 4by the rotary motion of said brush.

9. A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim 1 wherein said means for exhausting said cornbined rst and second air flows from said housing comprises a plurality of air flow exhaust slots through the walls of said housing, said slots being in communication with said means for discharging said combined first and second air ows away from said ybrush whereby said combined air flows are discharged from said 'brush and exhausted through said slots in said housing.

10. A compact surface cleaner apparatus as recited in claim 9 wherein said means for filtering said dirt particles from said combined first and second air flows comprises a filtering membrance positioned against the interior walls of said housing and over said exhaust slots through said housing.

11. A compact surface cleaner apparatus comprising:

(a) a housing having a bottom wall and a side wall;

(b) a nozzle opening formed in said Ibottom wall;

(c) a generally cylindrical rotatable electric motordriven brush mounted within said housing and positioned adjacent said nozzle so that a peripheral portion of said brush projects outwardly through said nozzle, said brush having a centrally positioned shaft and a plurality of bristles extending outwardly therefrom;

(d) a generally circular enlarged aperture formed in said side wall adjacent to said brush, said laperture being larger than said brush shaft |but smaller than said bristles so that said brush may -be pulled through said aperture for cleaning or replacement;

(e) .a generally circular closure member for insertion within said circular aperture;

(f) means on the outside surface of said closure member for locking said closure member Within said generally circular aperture;

(g) an enlarged shaft mounted for rotation within said closure member; and

(h) means for removably fixing said brush shaft to one end of said enlarged shaft as said closure member is locked to said housing, the other end of `said enlarged shaft being accessible from outside of said Casin-g to permit manual rotation of said lbrush by rotation of `said other end of said enlarged shaft.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 9/1910 Backer 15-344 8/ 1922 Pesarillo 15--344 9/1927 Sever et al. 15-344 X 7/ 1932 Jasgur. 5/ 1947 Basinger.

12/1951 Hooban 15-344 FOREIGN PATENTS 10/ 1951 Germany. 4/ 1932 Sweden.

ROBERT W. MICHELL, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US969441 *Feb 19, 1910Sep 6, 1910George BackerVacuum-cleaner.
US1426765 *Apr 11, 1921Aug 22, 1922Pesarillo Francisco MSuit vacuum cleaner
US1643823 *Feb 11, 1925Sep 27, 1927Fred SeverClothes cleaner
US1868170 *Feb 5, 1932Jul 19, 1932Samuel JasgurFabric treating device
US2421235 *Feb 10, 1944May 27, 1947Basinger Elmer ADirect drive vacuum cleaner agitator roller
US2578549 *Jul 26, 1948Dec 11, 1951Hooban Robert OPower-driven clothes-cleaning brush
DE816619C *May 20, 1950Oct 11, 1951Josef PohlnerPutzgeraet fuer Pferde und Rinder
SE74060A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3518711 *May 22, 1968Jul 7, 1970Westinghouse Electric CorpClothes brush
US5537711 *May 5, 1995Jul 23, 1996Tseng; Yu-CheElectric board cleaner
US6058545 *Jun 26, 1998May 9, 2000Roach; Floy ZellBody scrubbing device
US7721372May 31, 2005May 25, 2010S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc.Fabric sweeper
US8015650Jul 13, 2010Sep 13, 2011S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc.Fabric sweeper
US8377218Apr 13, 2010Feb 19, 2013S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc.Fabric sweeper
US20060265823 *May 31, 2005Nov 30, 2006Knopow Jeremy FFabric sweeper
US20100325826 *Jul 13, 2010Dec 30, 2010Knopow Jeremy FFabric Sweeper
USD655513Jun 22, 2011Mar 13, 2012S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc.Fabric sweeper
EP1885229A1 *Apr 3, 2006Feb 13, 2008S.C.JOHNSON & SON, INC.Fabric sweeper
Classifications
U.S. Classification15/23, 15/344, 15/375, 15/392
International ClassificationA46B13/02, A46B15/00
Cooperative ClassificationA46B13/02, A46B2200/3053, A46B15/00, A46B15/0053, A46B15/0051
European ClassificationA46B15/00B8, A46B15/00B7, A46B15/00, A46B13/02
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Sep 27, 1984ASAssignment
Owner name: BLACK & DECKER, INC., 1423 KIRKWOOD HIGHWAY NEWARK
Free format text: ASSIGNS AS OF APRIL 27, 1984 THE ENTIRE INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY A NY CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004349/0275
Effective date: 19840824