US 3403860 A
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Oct-1,1968 j H.SHAMES ETAL 3,403,860 ADJUSTABLE SPRAY SHOWER HEADS I Filed Oct. 29, 1965 70 L8 I 51 88 84 22 Jim/anions: 5 I 54 a l arold Shaina;
United States Patent 3,403,860 ADJUSTABLE SPRAY SHOWER HEADS Harold Shames, Agnes Circle, and Sidney J. Shames, 19 Agnes Circle, both of Ardsley, N. 10502 Filed Oct. 29, 1965, Ser. No. 505,626 Claims. (Cl. 239-460) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A shower head is provided constructed primarily from four parts, an outer shell, a hollow piston-like inner body, a shaped control shaft and an assembly retainer. The outer shell has axially spaced coaxial bores of different diameter. The inner body has aperture means with a height dimension intermediate the bore diameters of the outer shell. When the apertures are aligned, the control shaft may be projected laterally through the apertures to assemble the shower head. A snap-on retainer on the control shaft prevents disassembly. The control shaft has a crank portion offset from its pivot axis for cooperation with the aperture means of the inner body to selectively adjust the relative position of the inner body and to thereby vary the spray defining apertures that are defined by tapering grooves on the inner body cooperating with a resilient seal ring carried by and projecting inwardly from the outer shell. The periphery of the crank portion isfiatted to retain the inner body at selected axial portions. Preferably all major parts are made of inexpensive moulded plastic.
This invention relates to a selectively adjustable shower head and more particularly relates to a simplified shower head assembly of the selectively adjustable type that is characterized by economy of construction.
Shower heads which are selectively adjustable as to the volume flow of water therethrough have had greatly increased popularity in recent years. However, such devices have continued to have substantially enlarged cost factors when compared with fixed-discharge type shower heads. The principal reason for such enlarged cost factors lies in the fact that assembly of such units is usually more complicated and almost without exception such devices have been made of expensive brass. Furthermore, means must usually be provided for restraining the control therefor in its selected position, and inclusion of such means is usually reflected in accuracy of forming of parts, or in addition of parts, all of which contributes to increased costs. It would be desirable, therefore, to provide a selectively adjustable shower head of reduced cost.
It has also been known heretofore to provide an cecentric on a pivotable control shaft for effecting selective axial movement between parts of an adjustable shower head. In all such constructions the eccentric iscantilever mounted on the pivot control which is made of heavy brass to achieve strength. Such constructions do not suggest how to design an adjustable shower head where the control shaft thereof is made of plastic material having a significantly lower material strength.
The invention herein seeks to achieve lower costs in a selectively adjustable shower head by simplifying construction, by utilizing parts molded of plastic material, and by providing a simplified assembly which permits use of plastic as the material from which the major parts of the shower head are formed.
Thus, the principal object of this invention is to provide a selectively adjustable shower head of Very simplified assembly, thus providing for economy and simplicity of construction and permitting of manufacture of the major parts thereof from molded plastic materials.
3,403,860 Patented Oct. 1, 1968 "ice A further object of this invention is to provide a selectively adjustable shower head which is constructed so as to permit of effective utilization of a unitary control shaft and handle formed of plastic material and constructed to provide a plurality of pre-selected positions at which the shower head will operate to deliver water therefrom at different rates of flow.
Another object of this invention is to provide a shower head construction having simplified means for achieving selective control of at least a portion of the liquid flow discharge therethrough.
Further objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent as the following description proceeds and the features of novelty which characterize this invention will be pointed out with particularity in the claims annexed to and forming part of this specification.
A preferred embodiment of the invention is shown in the accompanying drawing, in which FIG. 1 is a vertical cross-sectional view through a selectively adjustable shower head constructed in accordance with the invention herein and showing the movable inner body at its extreme raised axial position;
FIG. 2 is a cross-section view taken substantially on line 22 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a view similar to FIG. 1 showing the movable inner body at its extreme axial position;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary cross-section view taken substantially on line 44 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4 but showing the parts of FIG. 4 in an intermediate position for the eccentric portion of the control shaft;
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the inner body member; and
FIG. 7 is a fragmentary view of the lower edge portion of the outer shell and inner body showing a modified construction.
Referring now to the drawings, there is shown in FIG. 1 a shower head generally indicated at 10 which embodies the features of the invention. At the upper end of FIG. 1 there is illustrated a portion of a conduit 12 through which water is fed into the shower head 10. As is well known in the art, an adapter, or connector, 14 with tubular neck 16 connected to bored ball means 18 provides a pivot connection for the head 10.
Now the shower head of this invention is formed basically of only four major parts or subassemblies. These four parts are: a molded outer shell 22, a molded inner body 24 positioned inwardly of the hollow shell 22, a control shaft 26 with integral handle for manipulating the inner body, and a retainer clip 28 for securing the assemblage together.
Referring now in greater detail to the features of construction shown, the outer shell 22 provided an upper tubular end 30 threaded exteriorly at 32 and defining an inwardly extending inner shoulder 34 against which is adapted to be seated a sealing gasket 36 which also serves as a spherical seat for pivotal engagement with the wall of the bored ball member .18. The swivel connection is completed by means of an annular nut-type member 38, which screws onto threads 32, and whose central bore is just large enough to receive the ball 18 therethrough. The transverse flange of the nut member 38 is recessed to receive thereinto a metal snap ring 40 of stainless steel or brass which is adapted to engage the wall of ball member 18 so as to complete the assemblage and prevent the ball pulling out through the nut 38.
Turning back to the shell member 22, the said member is generally of annular shape and formed of a plastic material that has been molded to define a pair of journal enlargements or bosses 42 and 44 located diametrically opposite each other. Below the journal embossments 42 and 44, the shell 22 is shaped to define a radially extending wall 46 which turns downwardly to define an annular flange 47 shaped to provide exterior stepped shoulder that provides an upright wall 48 and an adjacent support wall 49 for receiving and supporting the lower end of an escutcheon E which telescopes over the upper end of shell 22 before the control shaft 26 is assembled. The nut member 38 is also designed and arranged to overlay the upper end of escutcheon E to provide a neat appearance. The inner wall of the annular flange 47 is also shaped to provide a stepped shoulder construction which includes an upright cylindrical Wall 50 and an adjacent upper annular shoulder 51. The shell also defines a corner construction which provides an annular horizontal wall 53, located outwardly of cylindrical wall 50 and spaced below annular wall 51, and a conically diverging upright wall 54.
A sealing gasket 56 of square cross-section, and formed of rubber or the like, is positioned in engagement with the walls 50 and 51 and extends radially inwardly of said wall 51. The sealing gasket 56 is retained in position by a gasket retainer 58 spaced from wall 51. The retainer 58 may be formed integral with shell 22 or it may be separate therefrom and be secured by any appropriate means such as by adhesives or welding to the walls 53 and/ or 54 of the shell 22. In a preferred construction, retainer 58 is welded to shell 22 by use of ultrasonic power, and such construction avoids machining of the recess in which the gasket 56 is positioned. The size and shape of gasket retainer 58 is such that the innermost edge terminates short of the innermost right cylindrical edge of the gasket 56. The shell 22 is also provided with a pair of reinforcing ribs, or webs, 60 that are best seen in FIG. 2 and which lie diametrically opposite each other and in a plane perpendicular to the diametric plane through the journal enlargements 42 and 44.
The journal enlargement 42 is apertured or bored to provide an elongated sleeve 62, while the embossment 44 is similarly apertured to provide an elongated sleeve 64. The sleeves 62 and 64 are arranged coaxially and in precise alignment. The axial length of sleeve 62 is less than that of sleeve 64, and this permits the interior of shell 22, immediately adjacent the embossment 42, to be recessed at 66 to permit of movement therein of the eccentric crank as hereinafter disclosed.
The inner body 24 is a piston-like member that is arranged to enter shell 22 through the downstream end of said shell which has a generally increasing interior dimension as one moves in a downstream direction. The inner body is generally shaped to provide a relatively large diameter lower end and a reduced diameter upper stem section. The lower end of body 24 includes a transverse annular wall 70 with an inclined outer flange or skirt 72 and a cupshaped center 74 having a lower central wall 76 which transversely bounds the central hollow chamber 78. The reduced upper section of body 24, that extends above transverse annular wall 70, includes two pairs of spaced walls, of which one pair 80 are flat and parallel to one another, while the other pair 82 are in the form of arcuate sections that are best seen in FIG. 2 and FIG. 6.
The transverse annular wall 70 is provided with a series of spray apertures 84 therein, and the lower central wall 76 may also be provided with a plurality of spray apertures 86 therein. The outer periphery of the upright wall 72 is provided with a series of inclined grooves 88 formed therein which operate to provide alternate grooves and ridges. The upright wall 72 also is arranged in sliding engagement with the inner edge of the gasket 56 so that those lands, or portions between grooves 88, which engage the gasket are in sealing relation therewith. The inclined grooves 88 begin in the upper surface of the transverse wall 70 and extend at an incline downwardly through the upright wall 72 but terminate in the upright outer surface of the wall 72 at a point spaced above the lower edge 73 of the wall 72. The pair of flat parallel walls 80 are provided with a first pair of registering apertures 90 which are best seen in FIGS. 2, 4 and and each of which is elongated laterally to provide a straight upper bearing edge 92, that lies in a plane perpendicular to the directions in which the body 24 is axially movable relative to outer shell 22. Spaced below the apertures in each of the walls 80 is a laterally enlarged flow aperture 94 which communicates the interior, or hollow center, 78 of the piston-like inner body 24 with the flow space defined between the inner body 24 and the outer shell 22. It will be understood that water flowing into the upper open end of the stem of body 24 and into the space 78 will move laterally through apertures 94 and then through the discharge openings 84 and 86 and along the grooves 88 to provide a shower pattern. The spacing of the walls of grooves 88 from the adjacent upright walls on the shell cooperates to define the discharge apertures around the exterior periphery of body 24.
The control shaft 26 includes a stem portion generally indicated. at 96 and a handle 98 formed integral therewith. The stem portion 96 has a cylindrical portion of relatively large diameter which slidably fits in the sleeve 64 and which is provided with an annular groove 100 for receiving thereinto an O-ring type sealing gasket 102 which is slidably received in sleeve 64 but which operates to effect sealing contact with the walls of sleeve 64. Another portion of stem 96 is in the form of a reduced cylindrical part 104 which slidably enters into and through sleeve 62, and which is annularly recessed at 106 to receive thereinto an O-ring type seal 108 which slidably enters sleeve 62, but which provides the necessary sealing contact therewith. The stem sections 96 and 104 are substantially precisely coaxial with each other. Another portion of stem 96 is shaped to provide an elongated eccentric 110 which is located offset from the axis of stem section 104 but which is located within the laterally projected confines of the greatest cylindrical surface of stem 96, and which eccentric is connected to the cylindrical portion 104 by .a crankar-m 112. The portions of eccentric 110 which extend through and are located in the plane of the apertures 90 defined in the upright walls 80 are shaped to provide an octagon cross section, as best seen in FIGS. 4 and 5. The spaced octagon sections are at 114, and the peripheral flat bearing faces thereof are indicated at 116.
The retainer clip 28 is shaped to define a central portion 118 that may be gripped or grasped as a handle and which merges into an axially elongated, bifurcated, or saddle, portion 120 that provides a pair of spaced arms with inwardly extending shoulders 122 spaced closer than the maximum diameter of eccentric 110 and which thus provides for snap-on engagement with the eccentric portion 110 that is located between the octagonal portions 114. The maximum width of the retainer clip 28 is such as to permit it to enter shell 22 through the upper tubular end 30, and to and past shoulder 34 slidably enter between the walls 80 and to fit in closely spaced relationship thereto, while still permitting snap-on fitting of the retainer clip onto the eccentric 110. The inner periphery of saddle 120 is rounded to permit of rotation of the eccentric 110 relative to clip 28.
In the modified form of construction shown in FIG. 7, parts similar to those in the previous figures, are similarly numbered. In FIG. 7 the annular sealing gasket between the shell 22 and the inner body 24 is shown at 56' and is generally of U-shape with an inner leg 56a, an outer leg 56b and a bight 56c. The bight 560 is positioned flat against the gasket retainer 58 and the legs of the U extend from the bight generally axially of shell 22 and upstream so that the pressurized liquid in the shower head 10 tends to enter between legs 56a and 56b thus forcing leg 56a to tend to flex radially inwardly and sealingly more tightly against the portions of wall 72 of the inner body 26.
In the assembly of the head 10, the escutcheon E with lateral aperture therein is telescoped onto shell 22 with inner body 24 positioned therein. Axial movement between body 24 and shell 22 will locate apertures 90 in alignment with sleeves 64 and 62 to permit of simple slipthrough assembly of control shaft 26 through the lateral aperture of the escutcheon and through said aligned apertures and sleeves. Then, entry of retainer clip 28 through the upstream end of shell 22 and securement to shaft 26 secures the parts together, after which the swivel connection including nut-type member 38 is connected to the upstream end of the shell 22.
With regard to the octagonal shaped sections 114 of the eccentric 110', it has been found that the flats 116 defined by the faces of the octagonal periphery operate to serve as positioning means to retain the movable inner body 24 in a plurality of pre-selected or dwell positions relative to shell 22. Furthermore, the flats 116 provide elongated bearing surfaces cooperating with the flat edges 92 of apertures 90. The latter factor increases the stability of the inner body 24 to be retained in the various pre-set positions because of increased friction between such cooperating bearing surfaces and by reducing the effective length of the moment arm of forces on the eccentric relative to what the friction and moment arm would be if the eccentric was merely cylindrical.
It will be understood that when the inner body 24 is moved downstream relative to shell 22 the peripheral channels defined by grooves 88 are opened up permitting greater volume of water to flow therethrough for a heavy stream, and when the body 24 is retracted upstream the effective size of grooves 88 is reduced to provide a finer spray, such as a needle shower in the extreme upper position. In all positions there is flow through apertures 84 and 86. The grooves 88 may all be of the same size and shape or may be of such size as to provide alternate deep and shallow grooves, so as to provide two sets of peripheral streams of difierent relative size and discharge character. An important feature in the construction disclosed is terminating the grooves 88 in the side surface above the lower edge 73 of wall 72, because when the inner body 24 is molded, there is avoided any flash that might occur if the grooves terminated at edge 73.
While there has been shown and described a particular embodiment of this invention, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that various changes and modifications may be made therein without departing from the invention and, therefore, it is intended in the appended claims to cover all such changes and modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.
What We claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent of the United States is:
1. In an adjustable shower head of the type having an outer axially-elongated shell, an inner body movable axially of the outer shell to vary the pattern of Water flow discharged through flow apertures that are partially defined by adjacent surfaces on the body and shell, and a manual control for selectively varying the relative positions of the shell and inner body, the improved construction comprising, in combination: the outer shell and inner body each defining thereon a pair of spaced registering apertures which are registrable with the other pair of apertures, an elongated pivotable control shaft arranged to extend through and into the registered pairs of apertures to axially retain the inner body in assembled position in the outer shell, a snap-on type retainer clip on said control shaft arranged to engage one of the parts through which said control shaft extends to prevent said control shaft from being withdrawn from any of said apertures, the pair of registering spaced apertures in the outer shell being coaxial but of different diameter and being elongated to define registering cylindrical bearing sleeves, said control shaft defining thereon a pair of spaced coaxial cylindrical bearing segments of different diameter respectively positioned simultaneously in said cylindrical bearing sleeves, and each said cylindrical segment carrying an O-ring for slidable scaling engagement with the cylindrical bearing sleeves in the outer shell.
2. A device as in claim 1 wherein said inner body defines a central hollow passageway bounded by a pair of spaced parallel walls in which are located the said pair of registering apertures, and the retainer clip being of a size to enter the central hollow passageway of the inner body and being axially elongated to fit between said pair of spaced parallel walls on the inner body in closely spaced relation to said walls.
3. A device as in claim 1 wherein the spaced coaxial bearing segments of the control shaft are interconnected by an elongated shaft segment whose axis is eccentric to the axis of said bearing segments but is located within the axially projected cylindrical confines of the bearing segment of greatest diameter, and spaced portions of said eccentric shaft segment having a plurality of flats formed thereon.
4. A device as in claim 2 wherein the apertures in said spaced parallel walls are elongated with one elongated edge of each said aperture located in a plane perpendicular to the directions in which the inner body is axially movable relative to the outer shell, and the portions of said control shaft extending through said spaced apertures each being eccentric relative to the pivot axis of said control shaft and having a plurality of flats defined thereon for bearing engage-ment with the said one elongated edge of said aperture, to provide for positioning the inner body in a plurality of selective positions axially of the outer shell.
5. A device as in claim 1 wherein the outer shell has a discharge end, axially spaced walls on the outer shell adjacent said discharge end defining an inwardly opening peripheral recess, and an annular resilient sealing member in said peripheral recess extending inwardly of said spaced walls to sealingly but slidingly engage portions of the inner body, and to provide wall means for in part defining the apertures through which water spray is discharged.
6. A device as in claim 5 wherein the annular resilient sealing member is generally U-shape with the legs of the U positioned to extend from the bight thereof generally axially and upstream relative to the outer shell, so that liquid pressure in the shower head will urge the inner peripheral leg of the resilient member toward sealing engagement with the inner body.
7. A device as in claim 1 wherein the exterior of the outer shell is shouldered generally adjacent the downstream end, the upstream end of the outer shell being exteriorly threaded, an annular escutcheon shell telescopingly receiving the upstream end of the outer shell and supported on said shoulder, and ball mounting means for cooperating with the upstream end of the outer shell including a threaded nut member cooperating with the threaded end of the shell and arranged to retain the escutcheon shell axially in position on said outer shell.
8. A device as in claim 1 wherein the outer shell is generally of annular shape with the shell increasing in size in the direction downstream, the inner body being generally piston shaped for entrance into said outer shell through the downstream end thereof, the upstream end of the piston shaped inner body being tubular to provide a water passageway, and the retainer clip being of smaller dimension than the opening at the upstream end of the inner shell, so as to enter the inner shell for snap-on securement to the control shaft.
9. In an adjustable shower head of the type having an outer axially-elongated shell, an inner body movable axially of the outer shell to vary the pattern of water flow discharged through flow apertures that are partially defined by adjacent surfaces on the body and shell, and a manual control for selectively varying the relative positions of the shell and inner body, the improved construction comprising, in combination: the outer shell and inner body being formed of plastic, the outer shell having a pair of diametrically spaced sleeve-like bearings of different diameter formed integrally thereon, the inner body defining an aperture therein whose periphery serves in part as a cam follower, the dimension of the aperture in the inner body in the direction of axial movement of said inner body being intermediate the different diameters of the pair of sleeve-like bearings, and an elongated control shaft molded of plastic and defining thereon two spaced journal portions of diiferent diameter, one of said journal portions being adapted to enter and move through the aperture in the inner body, said journal portions being respectively arranged to be pivotally mounted in said spaced sleevelike bearings, and a cam portion on the control shaft spaced between said journal portions and arranged to engage the cam follower portion of said aperture in the inner body.
10. In an adjustable shower head of the type having an outer axially-elongated shell, an inner body movable axially of the outer shell to vary the pattern of water flow discharged through flow apertures that are partially defined by adjacent surfaces on the body and shell, and a manual control for selectively varying the relative positions of the shell and inner body, the improved construction comprising, in combination: the outer shell and inner body being formed of plastic material upon which watercarried minerals do not tend to deposit, said outer shell defining a pair of spaced coaxial apertures of different diameters, the inner body defining a laterally elongated aperture having a minimum height dimension intermediate the said two diameter dimensions, the outer shell and inner body being adapted for assembly with all said apertures in register to provide a laterally extending passageway in which the three different size apertures are arranged in sequence of size, an elongated pivotable control shaft formed of plastic material and arranged to extend through all the said registering apertures of said laterally extending passageway to assemble the shower head and to axially retain the inner body in assembled position in the inner shell, and a snap-on type retainer clip attached on said control shaft after the shower head is assembled and arranged to engage one of the parts through which said control shaft extends to prevent said control shaft from being withdrawn from any of said apertures.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,012,623 8/1935 Boyd 239- 460 X 2,423,015 6/1947 Goepfrich et al. 292 2,949,242 8/1960 Blumberg et a1. 239--456 X 2,968,443 1/1961 Manning 239-456 X 2,990,123 6/1961 Hyde 239*107 X 3,109,591 11/1963 Moen 239107 3,130,911 4/1964 Billeter 239109 M. HENSON WOOD, JR., Primary Examiner.
H. NATTER, Assistant Examiner.