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Publication numberUS3323813 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 6, 1967
Filing dateJul 16, 1964
Priority dateJul 16, 1964
Also published asDE1289373B
Publication numberUS 3323813 A, US 3323813A, US-A-3323813, US3323813 A, US3323813A
InventorsGordon Julian D
Original AssigneeJet Spray Cooler Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Manifold assembly
US 3323813 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 6, 1967 J. D. GORDON 3,323,813

MANIFOLD ASSEMBLY Filed July 16, 1964 I 2 Sheets-Sheet l INVENTOR.

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June 6, 1967 J. D. GORDON MANIFOLD ASSEMBLY 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed July 16, 1964 INVENTOR. 9M 11%,

United States Patent 3,323,813 MANIFOLD ASSEMBLY Julian 1). Gordon, Peabody, Mass., assignor to Jet Spray Cooler, Inc., Waltham, Mass., a corporation of Massachusetts Filed July 16, 1964, Ser. No. 383,179 Claims. (Cl. 285137) This invention relates to bulk head fittings and more particularly comprises a new and improved manifold assembly providing a communication for fluids between the inside and outside of a sealed vessel.

One typical application of the manifold assembly of this invention is in beverage dispensing apparatus such as is shown in the copending application of Jacobs, et al., Ser. No. 146,063 filed Oct. 5, 1961, entitled Apparatus and Method for Carbonating and Dispensing Beverages and now Patent No. 3,206,069. In such carbonating and dispensing units a pressurized vessel is provided for the beverage, and cooling apparatus is provided in operative relationship to the vessel so that the beverage may be circulated and cooled. It is necessary to supply water, beverage syrup and carbon dioxide gas to the vessel as well as to provide a purge for the vessel to limit the pressure buildup in it. It is of course essential in such an application that the manifold assembly be free of all leaks. Further, because in this application the manifold assembly carries food products, it must be capable of being completely cleaned and sterilized to meet the standards of cleanliness imposed by local, state and federal agencies.

One important object of this invention is to provide a manifold assembly which forms a leakproof seal about the opening in the vessel through which it is filled and purged.

Another important object of this invention is to provide a manifold assembly which provides a positive leakproof seal about each of the individual ducts or tubes in the assembly.

Still another important object of this invention is to provide a manifold assembly which may be completely disassembled for thorough cleaning and which may be reassembled easily and quickly. In many prior art devices, the individual tubes forming the manifold assembly are permanently secured to the frame so that they may not be disassembled for convenient individual cleaning.

Still another important object of this invention is to provide a manifold assembly in which individual tubes are free to move somewhat so as to facilitate the connection of hoses to the ends of the individual tubes after the assembly is mounted. In certain prior art devices wherein the tubes are rigidly connected to a frame, the tubes cannot move and often shear off when an operator manipulates the tubes to connect hoses to them.

Still another important object of this invention is to provide a manifold assembly which is mechanically held together and is free of welds, etc., between the tubes and frame. In certain prior art devices, individual tubes which make up the assembly are welded to the frame, and the welding operation is particularly critical with thin walled tubes and is extremely expensive.

To accomplish these and other objects, the manifold assembly of this invention comprises a pair of rigid plates separated by a rubber-like gasket, Aligned holes are provided in the plates and gasket through which one or more tubes may extend. The tubes have outwardly projecting sections provided in them which lie in the plane of the gasket but toward one of the two plates. Means are provided for compressing the sandwich made up of the plates and gasket to form a leakproof seal about each of ice the tubes. When assembled in the wall of a chamber, the means serves to compress the sandwich against the Wall of the vessel to form a leakproof seal over the opening in the vessel on which the manifold is assembled.

These and other objects and features of this invention, along with its incident advantages, will be better understood and appreciated from the following detailed description of one embodiment thereof, selected for purposes of illustration, and shown in the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a side view partly in section of a beverage dispenser having a manifold assembly constructed in accordance with this invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged fragmentary detailed view of the manifold assembly of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an exploded view of the manifold assembly shown in FIGS. 1 and 2;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged detail of part of the assembly shown in FIG. 2; and

FIG. 4a is a fragmentary view of one of the components in the assembly.

In FIG. 1 a beverage dispensing assembly 10 is shown having a bowl or vessel 12 in which the beverage to be dispensed is stored and a stand 14 which supports the vessel and houses a portion of the refrigeration system, controls, etc. A dispensing valve (not shown) is secured to the vessel to draw beverage from it. The dispenser shown intended to be used for carbonated beverages is supplied with water, syrup and carbonating gas through the manifold assembly 18. The water may be supplied either from a storage tank or from a line (not shown), a syrup container (not shown) may be connected to the manifold assembly 18 through ducts provided in the stand 14 and a carbon dioxide tank (not shown) may be disposed beneath the counter of the beverage dispenser and be connected to the manifold assembly through another line. A purge line for relieving pressure in the tank is also provided through the manifold assembly' 18 as will be described in detail below.

In FIG. 2 the assembly is shown in enlarged form mounted in an opening 20 in the bottom wall 22 of the vessel 12. The bottom wall 22 of the vessel may be made of stainless steel, plastic or other material, but if made from metal, the opening 20 may be stamped from the metal. If a burr is left about the margin of the opening 20, it will enhance the seal formed about the opening by the manifold assembly if the burr extends upwardly from the opening on the side of the manifold assembly.

The manifold assembly includes a first or lower gasket 24, a first or lower plate or disc 26 made of a rigid material such as stainless steel. a second gasket 28 made of a rubber-like material like the gasket 24, and a second plate or disc 30 substantially identical to the plate 26. In the particular use of the mainfold assembly suggested in FIG. 1, the gaskets 24 and 28 may be made of a natural unfilled gum rubber and the discs 26 and 30 may be made of a stainless steel. In FIG. 3 the gaskets and discs are shown provided with five sets of aligned holes 32, 34, 36, 38 and 40. In the disc 30 the central hole is replaced by a threaded stud 42 spot welded on the center of the discs.

The assembly also includes three manifold tubes 44, 46 and 48 and a purge tube 50. The manifold tubes may all be of the same length as shown in FIG. 3, and the purge tube 50 is substantially longer than the manifold tubes so as to extend above the level of the liquid in the vessel 12 (see FIG. 1). The manifold tubes 44, 46 and 48 are each providedwith outwardly extending beads 52 adjacent their upper ends 54, and an identical bead 56 is provided about the purgedtube 50 substantially-the same distance from its lower end 58 as are the beads 52 from the lower ends 60 of the manifold tubes. The beads 52 and 56 have a greater diameter than the openings 32, 34, 36 and 38 in the discs and gaskets. Therefore, the beads cannot pass through the openings in the different parts. Like the opening in the bottom wall 22 of the vessel, the openings 32-40 in the gaskets and discs may also 'be stamped from the material. The stampings in the metal discs may leave burrs about the margins of the holes, and the peripheries of the discs may also have burrs if the disc bodies are stamped. If the holes are stamped in the gaskets, those holes will take the configuration shown in FIG. 4a with the diameters of the holes diminishing from the surfaces of the gaskets to a minimum diameter at the centers. That is, the holes in the gaskets have a maximum diameter at the surfaces, as the diameters gradually diminish towards the centers. The effect of this configuration for the holes in the gasket is evident in FIGS. 2 and 4.

When the tubes are assembled through the holes in the discs and gaskets, so that the beads 52 and 56 lie generally in the plane of the gasket 28 but slightly to either side of it so as to be engageable by either of the discs 26 or 30, and the discs 26 and are pressed toward one anothenthe beads 52 and 56 wedge into the holes in the gasket 28 because of the tapered configuration of those holes. The flexibility of the gasket material allows the beads to penetrate into the holes, and the inner surface of the plate against which the beads bear serves to hold the beads in position. Therefore, a most effective seal is formed when the beads are wedgedinto the holes in the gasket as is depicted in FIG. 4. It will be evident from an inspection of FIG. 4 that the beads 52 as well as the bead 56 on the purge tube may lie against either of the two plates 26 and 30; that is, they could lie on the upper surface of the plate- 26 and be wedged into the holes in the gasket 28 below the narrowest point identified at 58 in the hole shown.

It is apparent that the seal about the tube 50 shown in FIG. 4 is formed as the result of compressive forces being applied to the assembly of discs and gaskets. The threaded stud-42 on the disc 30 is provided as a means of applying such a compressive load. A retainer '64 having four radially extending arms 66 which terminate in intumed legs 68 has a central hole 70 through which the threaded stud 42 extends; A nut 72 screws onto the stud 42 below the retainer64; When the device is assembled on the bottom wall22 of the vessel, the legs 68 bear against the lower surface 74 of the bottom wall 22 about the periphery of thehole 20. As the'nut 72 is tightened on the stud 42, the entire assembly of discs and gaskets is drawn against the upper surface 76 of the bottom wall 22 of the bowl. Thus, as shown in FIG. 2, the plate 30 is drawn firmly against the beads 52 and 56'on the tubes, the beads themselves are pressed into the tapered holes in the gasket 28, the faces of the gaskets and discs are pressed firmly against one another, and the lower surface of the gasket 24 is firmly pressed against the margin of the opening 20 on the upper surface 76 of the bottom wall 22. Any burrs formed about'the opening 20 in the bottom wall 22 of the vessel as well as any burrs provided about the peripheries of thediscs 26 and 30 and/ or about the margins of the holes in the discs will further enhance the effectiveness of the seals. Therefore, no leakage will occur between the discs and gaskets, between the lower gasket 24 and the wall 22, or about any of the tubes 44, 46, 48 and 50.

From the foregoing description it will be apparent that the manifold assembly may be easily assembled over the opening 20 in the bottom wall of the vessel or over any other opening in which the manifold assembly is to be used. The normal cut-off radii left at the ends 54 and 60 of the tubes are helpful when inserting the tubes through the holes into the plates and gaskets. Thus, it is unnecessar to perform a secondary operation to remove the normal cut-01f radii on the ends of the tubes.

fold assembly after the parts are assembled. Further,

welding of the tubes to the frame, commonly found in the prior art, is eliminated. The individual supports for the tubes allow each of the tubes to pivot about the gasket in a horizontal plane a few degrees, to reduce the tendency of the tubes tosnap old? when the lower ends 58 and 60 are connected to hoses within the platform 14. The individual parts may be made at a minimum of expense, and a most effective seal is made by the assembly about the individual tubes and over the opening in the vessel.

Because numerous modifications of this invention may be made without departing from its spirit, it is not intended that the breadth of this invention be limited to the specific embodiment illustrated and described. Rather, it.

is intended that the scope of this invention be determined by the appended claims and their equivalents.

What is claimed is: 1. In a beverage dispenser having a vessel for cooling the beverage, a fitting in the vessel wall comprising an opening in the vessel wall, a first gasket disposed within the vessel and covering the opening, a first retainer plate made of lying the first gasket, a second gasket made of a rubber-like resilient material and overlying the first plate, a second retainer plate made of a rigid material and overlying the second gasket, means defining aligned holes in the gaskets and plates of substantially equal diameter, a plurality of tubes extending through the aligned holes each having one end within the vessel and the other end outside the vessel, a

rigid material and overoutwardly extending beads provided in each of the tubes and disposed against the margin of the holes in the second gasket and against one of the plates, said beads having'a larger diameter than the holes, a threaded stud secured to the second plate and extending through holes in the other plate and gaskets, and a retainer secured to the stud beyond the first gasket and engaging the margin of the opening in the vessel for pulling the plates and gaskets against the inner surface of the vessel wall. 2. In a fitting for beverage dispensers as defined in claim 1,

the holes in the second gasket through which the tubes pass gradually diminishing in diameter from the outer ends to a minimum diameter intermediate the ends of the holes. 3. In a fitting for beverage dispensers as defined in claim 1,

said plates and tubes being made of stainless steel. 4. A bulk head fitting as defined in claim 1 further characterized by,

said plates being metal stampings producing burrs on the edges of the plates, said burrs being imbedded in the gasket when the plates are compressed. 5. A bulkhead fitting for a wall having an opening therein comprising a a first gasket, first plate, second gasket and second plate stacked in series on the wall and covering the opening, means defining-aligned holesinthe gaskets and plates, tubes extending through the holes from one side of the wall to the other,

5 an outwardly extending bead provided on each of the 2,768,231 tubes in the plane of the second gasket, 2,800,242 and means compressing the plates and gasket against 3,170,607 the wall and forming a seal about the beads in the 3 206 0 9 second gasket. 6

References Cited 6,397 UNITED STATES PATENTS 767,307

852,220 4/1907 Cecil 285--193 1,851,940 3/1932 Williams 285137 2,735,697 2/1956 Zanin 285137 X 6 10/1956 Schwennesen et al. 339103 7/1957 Sauthoff 285137 X 2/1965 Anthon 285-437 X 9/1965 Jacobs et a1. 221-1 FOREIGN PATENTS 3/1914 Great Britain. 1/ 1957 Great Britain.

X 10 CARL W. TOMLIN, Primary Examiner. THOMAS F. CALLAGHAN, Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US852220 *Feb 28, 1906Apr 30, 1907Thomas L CecilClamp for basin-cocks.
US1851940 *Nov 13, 1929Mar 29, 1932Williams Orr HClosure for conduits and the like
US2735697 *Jan 12, 1953Feb 21, 1956 Sealed reducer joint between pipes
US2768231 *Mar 30, 1951Oct 23, 1956Essex Wire CorpLead-in construction
US2800242 *Nov 18, 1954Jul 23, 1957Sauthoff Harold ACombination driller's and pump seal
US3170607 *Sep 1, 1961Feb 23, 1965Warner Lambert PharmaceuticalClosure for pressurized containers
US3206069 *Oct 5, 1961Sep 14, 1965Product R & D IncApparatus and method for carbonating and dispensing beverages
GB767307A * Title not available
GB191406397A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5535600 *Dec 7, 1994Jul 16, 1996Jet Spray Corp.Cooling system for a post-mix beverage dispenser
US5537838 *Nov 2, 1994Jul 23, 1996Jet Spray Corp.Beverage dispenser
Classifications
U.S. Classification285/124.3, 285/193, 277/620
International ClassificationB67D3/00, F16L5/02, F16L5/14
Cooperative ClassificationB67D3/0009, F16L5/14
European ClassificationF16L5/14, B67D3/00C