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Publication numberUS3344447 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 3, 1967
Filing dateSep 11, 1963
Priority dateSep 11, 1963
Publication numberUS 3344447 A, US 3344447A, US-A-3344447, US3344447 A, US3344447A
InventorsCandor James T, Candor Robert R
Original AssigneeCandor James T, Candor Robert R
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Material treating machine and method
US 3344447 A
Abstract  available in
Images(3)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Oct. 3, 1967 Filed Sept. 11, 1963 R. R. CANDOR E L MATERIAL TREATING MACHINE AND METHOD 3 Sheets-Sheet I OWER AND HEATER "OWATER VALVE INVENTORS ROBERT R.CANDOR JAMES T- CANDOR ATTORNEYS 0a. 3, 1967 R ANDQR mp 3,344,447

MATERIAL 'IIREATINGMACHINE AND METHOD Filed Sept. 1 1965 5 Sheets-Sheet H675 INVENTORQ I4 I38 ROBERT R. CANDOR I52 JAMES T- CANDOR FIG-7 Mm T ORNE Oct. 3, 1967 CANDOR ET AL 3,344,447

MATERIAL TREATING MACHINE ANDMETHODv Filed Sept. 11, 1965 3 Shsets-Sheet 3 FIG-8 PUMP OR DISPENSER v INVENTOIQE ROBERT R, CANDOR JAMES T. CANDOR ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,344,447 MATERIAL TREATING MACHINE AND METHOD Robert R. Candor, Miami Township, Montgomery County, Ohio (5940 Munger Road, Dayton, Ohio 45459), and James T. Candor, Centerville, Ohio (5440 Cynthia Lane, Dayton, Ohio 45429) Filed Sept. 11, 1963, Ser. No. 308,262 22 Claims. (Cl. 8-159) This invention relates to a material treating machine and method such as a laundry machine and method for treating or cleaning clothes, fabrics and the like.

For the sake of brevity this disclosure is made in connection with a laundry machine and method such as a domestic or commercial laundry machine and method for cleaning clothes and the like, but many of the features of this invention are applicable in other fields of material treatment.

One feature of this invention is applied to a rotatable drum having a plurality of longitudinal peripheral passageways which are connected with the interior of the drum by perforated or foraminous constructions. Inwardly directed baffies are provided in the drum adjacent the foraminous constructions to lift and drop accumulations of clothes adjacent the baffles and foraminous constructions as the drum rotates about its longitudinal axis.

This clothes lifting and dropping action may be used to produce an agitation and washing and/or rinsing action on the clothes While a body of water and the like is maintained in the drum. The longitudinal peripheral passageways may be used to introduce and/or remove and/ or change the body of water or other liquid in the drum while the drum is rotating or is stationary, as desired.

This clothes lifting and dropping action may also be used to remove water and/or water vapor and the like by suction action from such accumulations of clothes while the drum is rotating to produce a clothes wringing and/ or drying action on the clothes while a vacuum is produced in the longitudinal passageways. The clothes accumulation lifting and dropping action aids in subjecting different portions of the clothes to the vacuum action as different accumulations of clothes are produced and lifted by the baffles during the rotation of the drum. Therefore the rotating drum may be used to wring water from the clothes immediately after they have been washed and rinsed in the drum. The rotating drum may also be used to dry and remove water vapor from the clothes after wringing action has been produced or while such wringing action is being produced.

The longitudinal peripheral passageways may be used to introduce and/ or remove air or other gaseous medium into or from the drum while such drum is stationary or is rotating. Such air or gaseous medium introduction or removal may be accomplished simultaneously and/or at different times from the introduction and/or removal of water and/or other liquid into or out of the drum.

The clothes washing action, clothes wringing action, and/ or vapor removing action may be performed while the interior of the drum is maintained substantially at atmospheric pressure, or while the interior of the drum is maintained at subatmospheric pressure or at superatmospheric pressure.

Washing, and/or wringing, and/or vapor removing actions at subatmospheric pressures may be performed with the addition of heat. This obtains a lower boiling or vaporizing temperature. The washing, wringing, and/ or vaporizing actions can be increased by such use.

The drum construction may be shaped to concentrate the accumulations of clothes adjacent a limited perforated or foraminous constructioin. For example, the wall structure of the drum may be caused to converge, so the clothes are directed toward a point of concentration. The wall structure may be slanted so that the clothes tend to move to a point where the slanted portions converge. To this end the drum may be provided with converging side walls. When a limited or subnormal quantity of clothes is introduced in the drum, this quantity is concentrated at the point where the walls converge, so that a proper vacuum action can be applied to the limited quantity of clothes without undue air leakage through uncovered suction ports or areas.

The words wringing, and the like, are used herein to describe an action where liquid is removed from the clothes without vaporization. The wordswringing and the like are thus used to describe a liquid removal similar to that accomplished when clothes are wrung by hand or by squeezing rollers to drive the liquid out of the clothes. The vacuum action herein disclosed may be used to produce a wringing action similar such hand or squeezing roll action.

Other features are apparent from this description, the appended claimed subject matter, and/ or the accompanying drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is a diagrammatic perspective view of the front of one embodiment of this invention.

FIGURE 2 is a diagrammatic perspective view of the rear of the embodiment of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 3 is a longitudinal vertical cross section along the line 3-3 of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 3A is an enlarged cross section of a portion of FIGURE 3 showing means to limit the maximum flow of fluid through each passageway.

FIGURE 3B is an enlarged cross section showing means for maintaining a sealing pressure at the bearing member and sealing plate.

FIGURE 4 is a transverse vertical cross section along the line 44 of FIGURE 2.

FIGURE 5 is a transverse vertical cross section along the line 5-5 of FIGURE 2.

FIGURE 6 is a transverse vertical cross section along the line 66 of FIGURE 2.

FIGURE 7 is a diagrammatic vertical cross section of one form of a front air flow regulating valve shown as illustrated in connection with the embodiment of FIG- URE 1, and applicable to the embodiment of FIGURE 8.

FIGURE 8 is a diagrammatic longitudinal vertical cross section of another embodiment of this invention.

FIGURE 8A is a fragmentary perspective view of part of the device of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 9 is a transverse vertical cross section along line 9-9 of FIGURE 8.

FIGURE 10 is a transverse vertical cross section along line 1010 of FIGURE 8.

FIGURE 11 is an enlarged view of a portion of another embodiment of a front air flow regulating valve shown in connection with the embodiment of FIGURE 8, and applicable to the embodiment of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 12 is a transverse vertical cross section along line 12-12 of FIGURE 8.

A rotatable drum 20, according to this invention, may have a plurality of longitudinal peripheral passageways 22 which are connected with the interior 24 of the drum 20 by perforated or foraminous constructions 26 which may be formed on the otherwise imperforate or impervious cylindrical wall 28 of the drum 20. The drum 20 also may have a front transverse wall 30 and a rear transverse wall 32, which walls are substantially impervious or imperforate, except as otherwise described.

The front wall 30 may have a front opening 34 for the insertion of clothes and the like, and for the introduction of air into the drum 20, and for other purposes, as will become apparent.

The rear transverse wall 32 may have a plurality of generally radial passageways 36. The outer ends of the passageways 36 may be connected to the passageways 22 in any suitable manner, such as by elbows 38. The inner ends of the passageways 36 may be connected to generally longitudinal passageways 40 which terminate in openings 42 on the transverse sealing wall 44, which wall may be formed, if desired, on a slight longitudinal hub extension 46.

A combined bearing member and sealing plate 48 may be provided with a sealing wall 50 to cooperate and seal with the sealing wall 44 of the drum 20. The sealing wall 50 may be provided with one or more openings, connections, or curved open channels or grooves 52, 54, and the like. These openings or open channels, or grooves may be curved, if desired, as shown in FIGURE 6, so that they are aligned with the openings 42 of the passageways 36 as the openings 42 rotate with the drum 20. As the drum 20 rotates, the various openings 42 of the drum may be aligned with the openings 52 and/or 54, so that any vacuum action or pressure action in the openings 52 and/or 54 is transmitted to the passageways 22 through the passageways 36, 38 and 40.

The bearing member 48 may extend downwardly, and may be supported at its lower end by a suitable base construction 56, which, in turn, may be supported on a floor or the like of a building.

The drum 20 may be supported at its rear end on a shaft 58, which may be secured and sealed to the rear wall- 32, as indicated at 60 by any of the well known screw, bolt, and gasket constructions, as desired. The shaft 58 may extend through and be supported by the bearing member 48, and may extend outwardly beyond the hearing member 48 to receive suitable rotating means for rotating the drum 20. For example, a relatively large V- belt pulley 62 may be secured and keyed to the shaft 58 by any well known construction. A relatively small V-belt pulley 64 may be driven, for example, by the motor 66, which may be supported on the base 56, or on the support plate48, or elsewhere, as desired. A suitable V-belt construction 68 may connect the pulleys 62 and 64 to rotate the drum 20 at the desired rotational speed or speeds. While the V-belt construction 68 and pulley construction 62, 64, and 68 have been shown as an example of a rotational drive for the drum 20, it is to be understood that this is merely a diagrammatic representation of any desirable driving connection between a power source, such as the motor 66, and the drum 20. It is to be understood that this driving connection may be an adjustable one, so that the drum 20 may be rotated at various speeds, as desired. Such constructions are well known, and they may include, for example, variable transmissions between the motor 66 and the shaft 58, variable speed motors, and any other type of suitable variable speed drive or transmission.

If desired, the front end 30 of the drum 20 may also be suitably supported. For example, a pulley receiving band or ring 70 may be secured to the drum 20 at the front end. A suitable supporting pulley constructionmay include two or more pulleys 72, upon which the band 70 rides. The pulleys 72 may be supported by suitable support members 74, which may be supported on any part of the machine structure, such as on the outer casing 57, or on the base structure 56, or elsewhere, as desired. In this manner, the rear end 32 of the drum 20 is supported by the shaft 58 on the support and bearing member 48, and the front end 30 of the drum 20 is supported by the pulleys 72.

A plurality of inwardly directed baffies 76 may be pro vided adjacent the foraminous constructions 26. These baffles 76 are constructed and shaped to lift and drop accumulations 78 of clothes, and the like, adjacent one side of the baflies 76, and adjacent the foraminous constructions 26, as illustrated in FIGURE 5. These accumulations 78 are gathered by the baflles 26 from a generally larger mass of clothes 79 which have been introduced into the drum 20. These accumulations 78 are lifted from the larger mass 79 at the lower part of the drum, as indicated at 80, in FIGURE 5, and are lifted to the upper part of the drum, where they are dropped, as indicated at 82, in FIGURE 5, to fall back into the larger mass 79 of clothes, as the drum rotates counterclockwise, in FIGURE 5, at the desired speed to accomplish this action.

This clothes lifting and dropping action, which is illustrated in FIGURE 5, may be used to produce an agitation and Washing and/ or rinsing action within the tub or drum 20 while such drum 20 is partially filled with water or other liquid, which liquid may have an average depth, for example, such as is diagrammatically indicated at 84 in FIGURE 5. However, it is to be understood that this body of liquid or water will be in a turbulent condition during the rotation of the drum 20, and it will not have a smooth water level 84. This smooth level 84 is indicated merely to show selected average height of the body of water if it were in a static condition.

The longitudinal passageways 22 may be used to introduce and/or remove and/or change the body of water or other liquid 84 in the drum 20, while such drum is rotating, or is stationary, as desired. This may be accomplished by connecting the passageways 22 with suitable liquid removing means and liquid introducing means, during certain parts of the rotation of the drum, as will be more fully hereinafter described.

The clothes lifting and dropping action which is shown in FIGURE 5 may also be used to remove water and/ or water vapor and the like by suctionaction from such accumulations 78 of the clothes while the drum is rotating to produce the clothes wringing and/or drying action on the clothes while a vacuum is produced in the longitudinal passageways 22, as is elsewhere also more fully described. During this wringing and/or drying action, the drum 20 is being emptied of the body of water 84, or has been emptied'of the body of water 84, or other liquid, as more fully elsewhere described.

' The clothes accumulation 78 lifting and dropping action which is illustrated in FIGURE 5 aids in subjecting different portions of the clothes to the vacuum action as different accumulations 78 of clothes are separated from the main body of clothes 79 at 88. These newly separated accumulations 78 are lifted by the baffles 76 and are then dropped at 82. It is thus to be seen that a new and dilierently arranged accumulation 78 of clothes is pro vided at 80 at each rotation of the drum, since the previous accumulation 78 has been dropped at 82, to be mixed with the general body 79 of clothes, and to be redistributed and reselected at 80 to provide a new accumulation 78, so that different portions of clothes are subjected to the vacuum action at each rotation of the drum. This produces a very eiiective washing, rinsing, wringing, and drying action because of the repeated rearrangement of the accumulations of clothes 78, as the drum rotates.

It is to be seen that this very effective washing, rinsing, wringing and drying action may be serially performed on a body of clothes within the drum 20 while the drum rotates at a selected constant, or variable, speed of rotation. This speed of rotation need not be of the centrifugal type, so that violent unbalanced forces need not be produced in the drum 20. Therefore, it is not necessary to provide any complicated counter balancing arrangement, or massive supports, to prevent undue unbalanced vibration of the drum 28 as it rotates.

- It is apparentthat the longitudinal peripheral passageways 22 may be used to introduce and/ or remove :air or other gaseous mediums as well as water or other liquids into or from the drum 20 while the drum is stationary or is rotating. Such air or gaseous medium introduction or removal maybe accomplished simultaneously and/or at different times from the introduction and/or removal of water and/or other liquid into or out of the drum 20. To this end, the openings or arc-shaped grooves 52, 54

and any other openings desired, in the surface 50 f the support 48, may be connected to any desired liquid and/ or gaseous removal members and/or to any desired gaseous or liquid introductory members, or combined removal and introductory members, as desired.

For example, as indicated diagrammatically in FIG- URE 6, the arc-shaped groove 52 may be connected to a longitudinally and laterally extending passageway 90. This passageway 90 may be connected to a liquid removing pump 92. The passageway 90 may be connected directly to the pump 92, or it may include a valve 94, which may be automatically or manually actuatable, such as by a handle, or a solenoid and the like, under the control of a timer, if desired. The pump 92 may bedriven by any suitable means, such as by the motor 66, or by an additional motor, through suitable transmissions, if necessary. Any such driving means may be manually or automatically controlled, such as by a suitable solenoid or the like also which may be controlled by the timer of the machine, not shown, if desired.

hTe pump 92 may be of a character that it may act as a liquid pump and/ or a vacuum air pump, to remove air and to produce a vacuum in the passageways 22 While or after the liquid has been removed from the drum 20. That is, the pump 92 may be of a character that it can remove liquid through the passageways 22 if liquid is present in the drum 20, or in the clothes accumulations 78, and the pump 92 may also be of a character that it can remove air and produce a vacuum in the passageways 22 to remove water vapor or liquid vapor from the accumulations 78 as they are moved upwardly by the drum from a lower position 80 to a higher position 82. The arcshaped groove 52 in FIGURE 6 is illustrated to produce this vacuum or liquid removing action in the passageways 22 as they travel from substantiall the lowest position 80 of rotation, to a higher position 82 in FIGURE 5, Where the accumulations are being dropped or are about to be dropped.

If desired, an additional pump or blower 96 may be connected to the groove 52 through the medium of a longitudinal and laterally extending passageway 98. This passageway 98 may also include a valve 100, Which may be manually or automatically actuated, such as by a lever, or a solenoid, and which may also be controlled by the timer of the apparatus. The additional blower or pump 96 may be controlled by a solenoid or the like under the control of the timer. Such blower or pump 96 may also be controlled and driven by the motor 66 or an additional motor, as desired. It is thus to be seen that the pump 92 alone may produce the water removing and air removing action or the pump 92 may produce the water removing action, and the pump 96 may produce the air or gas removing action. Either of these devices 92 and 96 or other devices may be connected to groove 52 and may also be used to introduce air or liquid into the drum While the accumulations 78 are rising, if desired.

The arc-shaped groove 54 islocated, so liquid and/ or gaseous mediums may be removed and/ or introduced into or from the drum 20 through the passageways 22, as such passageways are traveling in a horizontal and/or downward direction on the left hand side of FIGURES and 6. For example, one or more longitudinal and laterally extending passageways 102, 104, 106, and the like, may each be connected to the groove 54, and these passageways 102, 104, 106, etc. may be connected to various fluid transmitting devices 108, 110, 112, these devices being connectable and/or disconnectable, if desired, by valve constructions respectively 114, 116 and 120. The devices 108, 110 and 112, and the valves 114, 116 and 120 may be controlled by timer action, such as a main timer of the machine, if desired. The devices 108, 110 and 112, may be driven from motor 66 through suitable controllable transmissions, or such devices 108, 110 and 112 may be driven by separate motors, as desired.

The device 108 may be an air blower, for example,

which may blow air into the passageways 22, and such blower may have a built-in electric heater, not shown, to heat the air, if desired, or not heat the air as desired, which is being introduced into the drum 20 through the passageways 22. The device may be a water introducing valve, which may have a hot Water inlet 122 and the cold water inlet 124 which may be connected by separate solenoids, if desired, and a built-in thermostatic control, if desired. Such valve 110 is well known per se, and may be under the control of the timer. The device 112 or any additional similar devices, may be fluid transmitting devices, such as a detergent introducing device, a disinfectant introducing device, and/ or a vacuum producing device, to produce a vacuum in the drum 20, above the body of washing liquid 84 or the like. Any other devices corresponding to 108, 110 and 112 may be added, and they may be connected to grooves or passageways on the surface 50 which are illustrated such as 52 or 54, or any additional grooves or openings desired.

The clothes washing action, clothes wringing action, and/ or vapor removing action may be performed while the interior of the drum 20 is maintained substantially at atmospheric pressure, or while the interior of the drum is maintained at subatm'ospheric pressure or at superatmospheric pressure as desired. Any suitable construction may be used to obtain these atmospheric, subatmospheric and/or superatmospheric pressures in the interior 24 of the drum 20. These pressures may be produced through the passages 22. Also a combined clothes introducing closure member and a pressure controlling member 126 may be provided at the opening 34 at the front of the drum 20, to control some or all of these various pressures.

For example, a closure plate 128, FIGURES 3 and 7, may be removably secured against the front wall 30 of the drum, at the opening 34. This closure member 128 may be removably held against the front wall 30 in any desired manner, so it can be removed for insertion of clothes, and may then be attached and/ or sealed around the periphery of the opening 34 while the drum rotates.

To this end, an inwardly flanged ring 130 has an inward flange slightly larger than the periphery of the plate 128 which may be circular, if desired. The plate 128 may be provided with two or more camming handles 132, which are pivoted on the plate 128 at 134. The handles 132 may be turned so that they are somewhat at right angles to the radii of the plate 128. In that position, the handles 132 will not engage the inner surface of the ring 130 and the plate 128 may be removed from the opening 34. However, when the handles 132 are turned and cammed into a more or less radial direction or inward direction, then cam surfaces, such as illustrated at 136 in FIGURE 11, engage the inner surface of the inward flange 0f the ring 130 and seal the plate 128 against the outer surface of the front wall 30 of the drum. In this manner, the closure 128 may be used to introduce clothes by removing the closure 128 from the opening 34. Then the clothes may be introduced in the interior of the drum 20. Then the closure 128 may be replaced and cammed to prevent any outward splashing of liquid from the drum and to seal the drum, so that a vacuum may be imposed on the interior of the drum or a pressure may be imposed on the interior of the drum, as desired.

Additionally, a pressure regulating valve member 138 may be provided on the closure plate 128 in alignment with an opening 140 in the plate 128. A rotatable handle 142 may be part of a means to cause the interior 24 of the drum 20 to be maintained at atmospheric pressure, subatmospherie pressure, and/ or superatmospheric pressure, as desired.

The handle 142 may be rotated to vary the net pressure resulting from the variable compression spring 144 and variable compression spring 146. The handle 142 may be threadedly mounted on a shaft 148 which is nonrotatably secured to the valve member or dome-shaped member 138 and which is provided with a key 158 where it passes through a keyed opening in another plate 152 which is bolted or keyed at 154 to the plate 128, along the edges of the opening 140. The plate 152 may have holes 156, or a spider construction, to allow air to enter or leave through the holes 156 when the valve or dome 138 is pushed inward by spring action or pressure action as the case may be.

The handle 142 may be turned to impose any desired net spring pressure toward the left or toward the right on the valve or dome 138. For example, when it is desired to impose a leftward pull on the dome 138, the handle 132 may be turned so that it is moved rightward along the threads of the shaft 148 to increase the compression of the spring 146, so that it overcomes the rightward tension of the spring 144, so that the net pull on the valve 138 is leftward, by the dominance of the stronger spring 146. However, if it is desired to have the valve 138 free to move rightwardly or actually to be moved rightwardly by the spring 144, then the handle 142 may be turned on the threads of the shaft 148, to move the handle 142 left-wardly a sufficient distance to expand and reduce the compression action of the spring 146 to the point where the spring 144 becomes the stronger spring, and equalizes or dominates the spring 146 and holds the valve 138 substantially just touching the plate 120, or actually spaced rightwardly, to produce an opening along the edge 158 of dome 138.

In view of this, the valve 138 may be put under a net spring tension to be urged leftwardly. Then a selected vacuum is imposed on the interior 24 of the drum when a vacuum is produced in passageways 22. When the selected vacuum has been attained the dome 138 may be moved by atmospheric pressure rightwardly, by atmospheric air entering through the holes 156 on the left side of the dome 138. In this manner a preselected vacuum may be imposed on the interior of the drum 2.4 by regulation of handle 142.

However, if desired, the pressure of the interior of the drum 20 may be maintained at atmospheric or substantially atmospheric pressure by adjusting the handle 142 leftwardly along the threads of shaft 148. The spring 144 then becomes the stronger or predominating spring to the extent that the edge 158 of the valve 138 may just be touching the plate 128 or may actually be spaced from the plate 128. Then substantially atmospheric pressure is maintained in the interior 24 of the drum even when vacuum action is being imposed to said interior 24 of the drum by either of the pumps 92 or 96, while the other devices 108, 110 and 112 are maintained closed.

The interior of the drum may be maintained at superatmospheric pressure by adjusting the handle 142 to maintain the dome 138 against the plate 128, and then causing any one of the devices 92, 96, 108 and 110 to produce a fluid pressure in the interior 2 4 of the drum. Under these conditions the dome 138 will remain against the plate 128 and prevent the passage of air through this control. If desired, one of the devices, such as 112 or an additional device, may be a pop-off device to limit the extent of superatmosphe'ric pressure. Also, a pop-off device may be provided anywhere on the plate 128, so that the extent of the superatmospheric pressure may be limited. The pop-off device may be of any well known safety valve construction.

With the foregoing adjustments for the valve 138, with or without the pop-off valve, not shown, the clothes washing action, the clothes wringing action, and/ or the vapor removing action may be performed while the interior 24 of the drum 20 is maintained substantially at atmospheric pressure, subatmospheric pressure or at superatmospheric pressure, as desired.

The washing, and/ or wringing and the vapor removing actions at subatmospheric, superatmospheric or normal atmospheric pressures may be performed with the addition of heat. For example, the device 108 may be a blower or merely a valve which can be opened, or the like, which has an electric heater therein. The air passing into the interior 24 of the drum through the passageways 22 may be preheated by the device 108 to introduce heated air into the interior of the drum, to produce a heating action during the wringing action, the washing action, or the vapor removing actions.

Additionally or alternatively, the air which is introduced at the front of the machine, may be used to introduce heat into the air entering at the front end of the drum 20 of FIGURES 1-7 and/or FIGURES 8-12. The air heating embodiment illustrated in FIGURE 11 may be used with either of the embodiments of FIGURES 1-7 or of FIG- URES 8-12. Conversely the corresponding clothes introducing structure of FIGURES 3 and 7 may be used in connection with the embodiments of FIGURES 8 through 12. That is, the clothes introducing device of FIGURES 8-12 can be used on the embodiment of FIGURES 1-7, and conversely the clothes introducing device of FIG- URES 1-7 can be used with the embodiment of FIGURES 8-12.

It is thus to be seen that heat can be applied to the contents of the drum either at the front opening, where the clothes are introduced into the drum, or at the rear end, by heating the air which can be introduced through the passageways 22 into the interior of the drum.

FIGURES 8-12 show an embodiment in which the drum 220 is shaped to concentrate the accumulations of clothes adjacent a limited perforated or foraminous construction. This enables a proper vacuum to be applied to an unusually small load of clothes. For example, the wall structure of the drum 220 may be caused to converge at 222 and 224 toward a point 226 of concentration. The wall structure of the drum may be slanted so that the clothes are moved to the point 226 where the slanted portions converge. When a limited or sub-normal quantity of clothes is introduced into the drum 220, this limited quantity is concentrated at the point 226 where the walls 222 and 224 converge so that an effective accumulation 228 of clothes is produced adjacent the limited perforation area 230, which is adjacent the baffles 232.

Generally longitudinal passageways 234 may be placed outside of the perforated areas 230, which passageways 234 correspond in action to the passageways 22 of FIG- URES 1 through 7. These passageways 234 may be connected to conduits 236 which have their other ends connected to the rotatable hub 238 on the rear wall 240 of the drum 220. The hub 238 has substantially the same function as the rear end wall 32 of FIGURES 1-7. Hence the vacuum action of the passageways 230, the conduits 236, and the hub 238 are substantially the same as in FIGURES 1-7. A bear-ing member and sealing plate 242 may have substantially the same construction and function as the plate 48 of FIGURES 1 through 7, so that description of its method of operation need not be repeated. Also, it is to be seen that connections such as 90, 102 and all of the other connections and vacuum and pressure devices which were disclosed in connection with plate 48 of FIGURES 1-7 are applicable at the plate 242 at the rear end construction of the embodiment of FIGURES 8-12. A shaft 244 is connected to the hub 238 and to the rear wall 240 of the drum 220. This shaft 244 may be supported in the bearing plate 242 substantially the same as in FIGURES 1-7 in connection with plate 48 and shaft 58. The shaft 244 may have attached thereto the large pulley 246 which may receive a V-belt 248 and be driven by the small pulley 250 from a motor 252, all substantially in the same manner as disclosed in connection with FIGURES 1 through 7. The bearing member 242 may be supported on the frame support 254. The outer casing 256 may perform substantially the same functions as the outer casing 57 of FIGURES 1-7. It is to be understood that substantially the same action takes place in the embodiment of FIGURES 8-12 that takes place in the embodiment of FIGURES 1-7, except that a 9 clothes concentrating action is produced by the slanted walls 222 and 244 of FIGURES 812.

A suitable pulley ring 258 may cooperate with two or more pulleys 260 which may be supported on the front portion 262 of the outer casing.

A clothes introducing structure 264 has been illustrated in connection with FIGURES 8 through 12, which is to be interchangeable with the clothes introducing structure 126 of 1 through 7, as previously stated.

In FIGURES 8 through 12, the front wall 266 of the drum 228 is provided with an inwardly flanged ring 268 which is placed adjacent an opening 270 of the front wall 266. A removable clothes introducing plate 272 may be removably secured at the periphery of opening 270 in the front wall 266. A suitable flexible sealing O ring 274 may be provided for the plate 272. Suitable handles 132 and cams 136, and pivots 134, may be used to cam the plate 272 against the front wall 266 in a manner substantially identical to that described in connection with FIG- URES 1-7.

A funnel 280 is sealed to the plate 272 in a relatively rotatable manner at 282, so that the plate 272 can rotate relatively to the funnel 280. The upper part 284 of funnel 280 may be maintained always upwardly directed by a frusto-conical member 286 which is inserted therein while the drum 220 rotates. This member 286 is hinged at 288 to the front wall 262 of the cabinet of the machine, and may be lifted by the lip 290 to the dotted line position shown in FIGURE 8, where it may be hooked in that position by a suitable hook when desired. However, when the member 286 is lowered to the illustrated full line positions of FIGURES 1 and 11, the frusto-conical member 286 is located in the upper part 284 of the funnel 280, and prevents the funnel from rotating with the drum 220.

The frusto-conical member 286 may include perforations in the member 286 and in an inner heater holding frusto-conical member 292 which may carry heating members 294 thereon. The hinged support member 295 is also perforated at 296, so that atmospheric air may enter through the perforations past the heating means 294 and may enter the cone 298.

The cone 298 may have air pressure regulating means. This may include a collar 300, the lower edge of which is sealed by an upwardly spring biased movable plate 302, which is supported by a rod 304 which has a sliding bearing construction 306 in a spider 308. A spring 310 upwardly presses against the plate 312 which is secured to the upper end of rod 304. The spring 310 maintains the plate 302 in closed upward position in the same manner 146 maintains valve 138 in closed position. Another spring 306' is carried by the upper surface of the plate 312. It is engaged by an adjustable nut 314, which is carried by the screw 316 on the bottom of the cone-shaped member 286. Adjustment of the nut 314 on the screw 316 adjusts the compression of the spring 306 which corresponds to the action of the spring 144 of FIGURE 7, in that the spring 306' tends to open the plate 302 and thus regulate the amount of air that can enter through the funnel 280 into the interior of the drum 222. Regulation of the net action of springs 306' and 310 may be obtained by adjusting the nut 314 along the screw 316. By this construction, heated air can be introduced into the interior of the drum 220 either at subatmospheric pressure, superatmospheric pressure, or substantially at at mospheric pressure, as desired.

FIGURE 3A shows a flow control means, such as a resilient bowed flow limiting disc 38A, which may be added to any or all of the suction passageways in FIG- URES 1-7 and/or 812. Such disc 38A may be added, for example on the elbows 38 of FIGURES 1-7 and in the pipes 236 of FIGURES 8-12. However, such flow limiting discs or means 38A may be added anywhere so they may limit the suction flow in each of the passageways 22 and/ or 234 to prevent undue suction flow in any 16 one or more of such passageways 22 and/or 234. Such undue suction flow might otherwise occur when an insufiicient amount of clothes fails to cover its respective foraminous construction 26 and/or 230, and this might cause the breaking of the vacuums in the other passageways 22 and/ or 234.

Such disc 38A may have an opening 38B which may be made smaller and more restrictive by rightward flexing of the disc 38A when an undue rush of suction air is caused to flow rightwardly through a passageway 38 (or 236). Such undue rush of suction air may occur if the corresponding foraminous construction 26 (or 230) fails to be covered by a sufiicient accumulation 78 (or 228) of clothes while the drum 20 (or 220) rotates. Such failure of a suflicient accumulation might be caused by the insertion of an insuflicient main body 79 of clothes.

Throttling discs of the character of disc 38A are well known, per se and therefore no further description need be given. Any other type of suction flow limit control may be used in lieu of the disc 38A.

A description of a typical clothes treating operation and the like may be as follows.

Clothes and the like may be introduced into the drum 20. (It is to be understood that operations similar to those being described in connection with the embodiment of FIGURES l-7 are equally applicable to the embodiment of FIGURES 812, and vice versa, with whatever modifications are caused by the differences in the structures of the embodiments.) The clothes and the like may be introduced by first removing the plate 128, introducing the clothes, and then replacing the plate 128.

Liquid such as hot and/or cold water may be intro duced into the drum 20 from the pipes 122 and 124 through valves and/or 116 into the passageways 22 and into the drum 20. (The Water fill operation may be controlled by a timer, which also may time and control any other appropriate operations herein disclosed.) The valve 110 and/or 116 may have a constant water flow control and the timer may time the water flow to provide the desired quantity of water.

Detergent and the like may be introduced from a source such as 112, under appropriate control, if desired. Alternatively, detergent may have previously been introduced with the clothes when such clothes were introduced into the drum.

If desired, a vacuum may be imposed in the drum while the subsequent washing and/or rinsing, and/or wringing, and/or vaporizing actions take place. Such vacuum may be imposed above the surface of the water or clothes by a device similar to 112.

Heat may be applied in the form of heated air from a device similar to 108.

After a satisfactory washing action with water and de tergent, the wash water may be removed through the passageways 22 and suction pump 92.

Rinsing water may be introduced from the device 110, either hot or cold or both. Such rinsing water may be added while the wash water is being removed, or after the main part of the wash water has been removed.

One or more washing actions and/or rinsing actions may be performed on the clothes.

A beneficial action is produced during the removal of the wash water and/ or rinsing water through the passageways 22. This removal may be performed while the drum 20 continues to rotate and to form repeatedly changed accumulations of clothes 78.

After the clothes have been rinsed, continued rotation of the drum 20 and production of vacuum action in the passageways 22 by the pump 92 and/or 96 initially may cause a wringing action on the accumulations to remove water and water vapor. This may be followed by a vapor removing action also by the pump 92 and/or 96, after all the liquid water has been wrung from the clothes by the vacuum action.

Rotation of the drum 20 may then be continued with ll 1 the addition of heated air from device 108 (or heater 294- of FIGURES 8 and 11 which are also applicable to FIGURES 17) while a vacuum continues to be applied at 92 and/or 96. Such operation may dry the clothes.

The dry clothes may be removed from the apparatus after it has been stopped. Such removal may be accomplished by removing the plate 128 from opening 34.

In the embodiment of FIGURES 8-12, a concentration of clothes at the point 226 insures that a sufficient amount of clothes is concentrated over the openings 230. This concentration may be obtained even if a relatively small amount of clothes is introduced into the drum 220.

Drying air may be introduced into the rear of the drum, as by device 108, or it may be introduced into the front of the drum as by the construction disclosed in connection with FIGURES 8 and 11.

Suitable means 320, FIGURE 313, may be provided for maintaining a suitable sealing pressure between the relatively moving walls 42 and 50. Any suitable means on shaft 58 may be provided to maintain a rightward pressure on such shaft 58 may be provided. For example, a tightening nut 322 may be threaded on shaft 58. A resilient washer or spring 324 may be interposed between the nut 322 and a bearing construction which, for example, may include a rigid washer 326 and a ball or roller bearing construction diagrammatically indicated at 328. Thus by any suitable construction of this type, the hub extension 46 and the drum 20 are continuously rightwardly urged to maintain a sealing pressure between the walls 42 and 50. This means 320 may also be applied to the embodiment of FIGURES 8-12.

Any of the baffies may be formed with a foraminous or perforated side adjacent the accumulation of clothes. Such baffle may have means to produce a vacuum and/ or pressure differential on the other surface of such perforated side, as by making the baffle with a hollow space with a fluid flow passageway in such space. Any of such bafiles may be outwardly directed to form the accumulations of clothes.

If the baffles are outwardly directed the perforations or foraminous constructions may be provided adjacent a point of convergence of the baffle walls which slant toward each other with a longitudinal passageway outside said baffie, so the baffle may have a substantially V- shaped transverse cross section with a channel shaped passageway outside the apex of the V.

The drums of all of the embodiments may be operated at superatmospheric pressure to force the fluid into the passageways by differential pressure. Such passageways may be maintained at atmospheric or subatmospheric pressure to produce the differential pressure while the interior of the drum is maintained at superatmospheric, subatmospheric or atmospheric pressure in any manner to obtain a pressure differential across the perforated or foraminous constructions.

The apparatus and method of this invention enables continuous washing, rinsing, wringing and drying actions to be serially performed within the drums 20 or 220. Such actions are performed without the production of violent forces, such as centrifugal forces.

It is possible to place a load of clothes in the drum. Thereafter, the drum may be continuously rotated, if desired, at the same or different rotational speed, as desired, serially to produce the washing, rinsing, wringing and drying actions in an effective, gentle and economical manner.

It is thus to be seen that a new, useful and unobvious treating or cleaning and/or laundering machine and method have been provided by this invention.

While the form of the invention now preferred has been disclosed as required by statute, other forms may be used, all coming within the scope of the claimed subject matter which follows.

What is claimed is:

1. In combination. a rotatable liquid retaining drum having a plurality of longitudinal passageways adjacent the periphery of said drum; foraminous constructions providing fluid flow connections between said passageways and the interior of said drum; means operatively interconnected to said longitudinal passageways to withdraw fiuid from said drum out through said passageways; and means to rotate said drum to lift and drop accumulations of clothes and the like adjacent the foraminous constructions as said drum rotates about its longitudinal axis.

2. A combination according to claim 1 in which means are provided in connection with said longitudinal passageways for introducing and/ or removing and/ or changing a body of water or other liquid in/ or from said drum while said drum is rotating or is stationary.

3. A combination according to claim 1 in which means are provided in connection with said passageways to remove water and/or water vapor or the like by suction and/or pressure differential action from said accumulations of clothes while the drum is rotating to produce a clothes wringing and/or drying action on the clothes while a vacuum is produced in said longitudinal passageways.

4. A combination according to claim 1 in which said longitudinal passageways have means to introduce and/ or remove air or other gaseous medium into or from said drum while such drum is stationary or is rotating.

5. A combination according to claim 1 in which a clothes wringing action and/0r vapor removing action may be performed while the interior of said drum is maintained substantially at atmospheric pressure, at subatmospheric pressure, or at superatmospheric pressure.

6. A combination according to claim 5 in which said washing, wringing and/ or vapor removing actions may be performed with the addition of heat.

7. A combination according to claim 1 in which said drum construction has means to concentrate the accumulation of clothes adjacent a limited foraminous construction as the drum rotates.

8. A combination according to claim 7 in which the wall structure of said drum has a converging shape to cause the clothes and the like to be directed toward a point of convergence.

9. A combination according to claim 8 in which the outer wall structure of the drum is oppositely slanted so that the clothes and the like tend to move to a point where the slanted portions converge.

10. A combination according to claim 1 in which said drum has substantially longitudinal baffie and foraminous constructions to lift and drop said clothes and the like said drum rotates.

11. A combination according to claim 1 in which means are provided for automatically limiting fluid flow in said longitudinal passageways.

12. A method comprising: retaining liquid in a liquid retaining rotatable drum having a plurality of longitudinal passageways adjacent the periphery of said drum with foraminous constructions providing fluid flow connections between said passageways and the interior of said drum; removing fluid from said drum through said passageways; rotating said drum to lift and drop accumulations of clothes and the like adjacent said foraminous constructions as said drum rotates about its longitudinal axis.

13. A method according to claim 12 in which a body of water or other liquid is introduced and/ or removed and/ or changed in/ or from said drum in connection with said longitudinal passageways while said drum is rotating or is stationary.

14. A method according to claim 12 in which water and/or water vapor or the like is removed in connection with said passageways from said accumulations of clothes while said drum is rotating to produce a clothes wringing and/or drying action on the clothes while vacuum and/or pressure differential pressure is produced in said longitudinal passageways.

15. A method according to claim 12 in which said longitudinal passageways introduce and/or remove air or other gaseous medium into or from said drum while such drum is stationary or is rotating.

16. A method according to claim 12 in which a clothes wringing action and/or vapor removing action is performed while the interior of said drum is maintained substantially at atmospheric pressure, at subatmospheric pressure, or at superatmospheric pressure.

17. A method according to claim 16 in which said washing, wringing and/ or vapor removing actions are performed with the addition of heat.

18. A method according to claim 12 in which an accumulation of clothes is concentrated adjacent a limited foraminous construction as the drum rotates.

19. A method according to claim 18 in which the clothes and the like are directed toward a point of convergence in a Wall structure of said drum which has a converging shape.

20. A method according to claim 19 in which said clothes and the like are given a tendency to move to a point where the outer wall structure of the drum is oppositely slanted to converge to said point.

21. A method according to claim 12 in which said clothes and the like are lifted and dropped as said drum rotates by inwardly directed baifies in said drum adjacent said foraminous constructions.

22. A method according to claim 12 in which fluid flow in said longitudinal passageways is automatically limited.

' References ited UNITED STATES PATENTS 906,816 12/ 1908 Nicolson 685 8 1,077,330 11/1913 Clarke 6820 1,172,296 2/1916 Lester 6858 1,487,907 3/1924 Yates 68--58 1,615,897 2/1927 Aydelotte 68-20 X 2,330,421 9/1943 Haberstump 68144 2,397,268 3/1946 Jorgenson 6858 2,555,268 5/1951 Chamberlin 68-20 2,608,003 8/1952 Tucker 68-2O X IRVING BUNEVICH, Primary Examiner.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3521863 *Feb 1, 1968Jul 28, 1970Graham Robert ACentrifugal mixer having vacuum means
US3604221 *Aug 12, 1969Sep 14, 1971Pellerin Corp MilnorWashing machine equipped with sprinkler for use in loading
US3984201 *Jul 23, 1975Oct 5, 1976General Electric CompanyLaundry machine and method of washing clothes
US3997292 *Jan 19, 1976Dec 14, 1976General Electric CompanyLaundry machine
US5596889 *Oct 20, 1995Jan 28, 1997Electric Power Research InstituteLaundry machine with reduced suds spin cycle
US6386004 *Jun 22, 2001May 14, 2002Bsh Bosch Und Siemens Hausgerate GmbhLaundry drum
US6393873 *Oct 18, 2000May 28, 2002Monotub Industries, PlcWashing machine
US6497122 *Jun 6, 2001Dec 24, 2002Bam Anlagen Und Maschinen Gmbh + Co. KgDrum-type fabric dyeing machine
US6868573 *Jan 26, 2004Mar 22, 2005Bsh Bosch Und Siemens Hausgerate GmbhMethod for operating a programmable washing machine and corresponding washing machine
EP1270793A2 *Jan 7, 2002Jan 2, 2003Lg Electronics IncClothes dryer
Classifications
U.S. Classification8/159, 68/17.00R, 68/58, 68/20, 68/144
International ClassificationD06F37/04, D06F37/00
Cooperative ClassificationD06F37/04
European ClassificationD06F37/04