US 3419930 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
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DUAL ACTION CLEANING MOP mea April 6, 1967. Sheet' Orz- I INVENTOR. 24 w VINCENT GRUNERT BY 6 .4mm 1M ATTORNEY Jam 7, 1969 v. GRUNERT 3,419,930
' DUAL ACTION CLEANING MOP I v Filed April e. 196'? I 2 JNVENTOR. I VINCENT GRUNE RT 7 BY 6 AM My A r ran var United States Patent 9 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A mop is provided with a cleaning pad having two substantially flat surfaces disposed at an obtuse angle. The cleaning pad is connected to the mop handle by a transverse rod which is positioned within slots extending across the vertex of the obtuse angle, which vertex is oriented downwardly for contact with a floor. When the mop handle is pushed forward, the transverse rod rides forward in the slots to the forward ends thereof to pivot the cleaning pad about the vertex of the obtuse angle, thereby bringing one of the flat surfaces into forward wiping engagement with the floor. When the mop handle is pulled backward, the transverse rod rides backward in the slots to pivot the cleaning pad in an opposite direction, thereby bringing the other of the flat surfaces into rearward wiping engagement with the floor. A squeeze sheet is also provided for compressing the cleaning pad to expel fluids absorbed therein during use of the mop.
This invention relates to a cleaning mop and more particularly to a mop having an absorbent, compressible cleaning pad such as a resilient sponge.
Conventional sponge mops are well known household items and usually consist of a rectangular sponge attached to an elongated handle so that the sponge may be wiped over the floor to absorb dirt and water by manipulation of the handle from a. standing position. One of the drawbacks of such mops is the fact that the residues and dirt which accumulate on the cleaning surface of the sponge are continuously rubbed on and across the floor as the mop is pushed back and forth. Therefore, the dirt has just as much opportunity to rub off the sponge (especially from the trailing edge thereof) back on to the floor as it has to be picked up, and unless the sponge is rinsed and cleaned at the end of each individual stroke of the handle, this problem cannot be avoided.
The present invention provides a mop which overcomes the above-mentioned problem in a simple and practical manner. More specifically, the mop of the invention is provided with a cleaning pad, of resilient sponge material or any other desired material, having two substantially flat surfaces disposed at an obtuse angle. This pad is attached to a support plate of complementary obtusely-angled configuration and the plate-pad assembly is connected to a handle so that the vertex of the obtuselyangled pad is oriented downwardly for contact with a floor.
The connection consists of a transverse rod at the bottom of the handle cooperatively associated with slots in upstanding cross-braces on the support plate, with the slots extending across the vertex of the obtuse angle of' the pad. The rod is free to ride forward and backward in the slots, and since the slots terminate on opposite sides of the vertex of the obtuse angle, force exerted on the handle by the user is translated into a torque which pivots one or the other of the two flat surfaces of the pad into engagement with the floor. This in turn provides a reciprocating dual action when the mop is pushed forward and backward in the usual manner, whereby first one and then the other of the two flat surfaces are auto- Patented Jan. 7, 1969 matically and alternately brought into wiping engagement with the floor.
In this way, the leading edge of the cleaning pad, after completion of either a forward or backward mop stroke, is always lifted off the floor before the pad changes its direction of motion. Since maximum dirt accumulation occurs in the immediate vicinity of such leading edges, the invention prevents this accumulated dirt from rubbing across, and potentially back on to, the floor. Instead, the dirt is always swept back under the cleaning pad towards its vertex no matter in which direction the mop is being manipulated. Thus, the dirt is effectively always picked up and not deposited back upon the floor, and this action continues until the interior of the pad adjacent the vertex gradually also accumulates dirt.
At this time, the cleaning pad may be rinsed, cleaned and then compressed to expel water or other cleaning fluids by means of a flexible sheet arranged to be wrapped across and around the working surface of the cleaning pad and then tightened. The sheet may be made of any strong material including plastic, textile fabrics and thin metallic sheets.
Further details of the invention will be readily understood by reference to the accompanying drawings of which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a mop constructed in accordance with the principles of the invention.
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a cleaning pad used in the mop of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a side view showing the mop being pushed forward.
FIG. 4 is a side view showing the mop being pulled backward.
FIGS. 5 and 6 are side views showing the cleaning pad being compressed to expel fluids therefrom.
Referring now to FIG. 2, a cleaning pad 10 of resilient sponge material is provided with a backing 12 which may be of flexible fabric material and which is preferably attached to the pad with an adhesive. Sandwiched between the pad 10 and backing 12 are two strips 14 of strong, substantially rigid material, each of which strips supports two, screw-threaded studs 16 extending up through the backing.
Referring to FIG. 1, the studs 16 are inserted into holes 18 in a support plate 2! and are locked in the holes by wing nuts 22 screwed down upon the opposite side of the plate. The support plate 20 is provided with four peripheral flanges, three of which 24, 26 and 28 are turned down over three sides of the pad 10 in nesting relationship, with the fourth flange 30 standing up away from the pad. Two small portions of the support plate 20 are knocked out and bent up to provide upstanding tabs 32 adjacent and spaced from the upstanding peripheral flange 30.
When attached to the support plate 20, the pad 10 provides two substantially flat cleaning surfaces 10A and 10B disposed at an obtuse angle the vertex of which is designated V. The support plate 20 has two integral crossbraces 34 of triangular configuration, including an obtuse angle substantially equal to the obtuse angle of the plate and the cleaning pad 10. Each cross-brace 34 is provided with a slot 36 which extends over and across the vertex V so that opposite ends of the slot are located on opposite sides of the vertex V.
An elongated handle 38 is provided at its lower end with a transverse rod 40, the opposite ends of which are disposed within the slots 36 and secured in that position by retaining collars 42. The rod 40 is free to travel back and forth along the length of the slots 36, and by this motion the rod and the attached lower end of the handle 38 may shift position from one side to the other side of vertex V.
An annular collar 44 is secured to the handle 38 by set screw 46 at a distance from the rod 40 such that the bend of the peripheral flange 26 contacts the collar when the support plate 20 is pivoted about rod 40 in the extreme forward position of the latter within the slots 36 (see FIGS. 5 and 6). Two rods 48 pass through lower integral peripheral loops of a flexible sheet 50 and are screwed into opposite sides of the collar 44 to secure the lower periphery of the sheet at the distance at which the collar is spaced from the rod 40. The upper periphery of sheet 50 also has an integral loop through which a rod 52 extends. The rod 52 also passes through holes in spaced arms 54 of a bracket member 56, which is thereby secured to the rod 52 with the arms 54 being free to pivot about the rod. The free ends of the arms 54 are provided with hooks 58, and two opposite right angle bends in each of the arms bring the other ends of the arms together within the body of a handle 60 which may be friction fitted over such ends. The upper end of the handle 60 is provided with an eyelet 62 which is retained by a hook 64 in order to secure the sheet 50 in a stored position. The size of the sheet 50 is slightly greater than the total surface area of the cleaning surfaces 10A and 10B of pad 10.
The operaion and use of the mop described above will be readily understood by reference to FIGS. 3 and 4. When a person pushes the mop handle 38 forward in the direction indicated by the arrow (FIG. 3), the transverse rod 40 rides forward in the slots 36. Therefore, if the cleaning surface 10A is not already in contact with the floor, the first thing that will happen is that the pad 10 will be pivoted about the vertex V, when the rod 40 reaches its limit of travel at the forward end of the slots 36, to bring the surface 10A down into contact with the floor. Continued pushing on the handle 38 will thereafter move the surface 10A forward in wiping engagement with the floor, and the leading edge 10AL of this surface will pick up the highest concentration of dirt during this forward movement.
When the person has completed the above forward stroke and then pulls on the handle to perform a backward stroke in opposite direction (FIG. 4), the transverse rod 40 will first ride backward in the slots 36, reach the rear ends of the slots and then pivot the pad 10 about vertex V to bring the surface 10B into contact with the floor. Simulaneously, the surface 10A is lifted up off the floor. Continued pulling on the handle 38 will thereafter move surface 10B backward in Wiping engagement with the floor, and now the leading edge 10BL of this surface will pick up the most dirt. However, the leading edge 10AL with its high dirt concentration has had no opportunity to rub back across the floor because it was lifted clear and did not remain in trailing contact with the floor as is true of conventional mops. The same uplifting of edge 10BL is achieved when the cycle starts to repeat with another forward mop stroke.
The above-described reciprocating dual action provides the principal advantage of the invention. With the leading edges 10AL and 10BL always being raised from the floor before the direction of mop movement changes, these edges are never permitted to become trailing edges and the high dirt concentration accumulated beneath these edges is not rubbed across the floor in a trailing motion. Instead, the clean interior portions of the pad 10, in the vicinity of vertex V, always trail the leading edges 10AL and 10BL during operation of the mop, whereby the mop has maximum tendency to pick up dirt and virtually no tendency to redeposit the picked-up dirt. Of course, the initially clean interior portion of the pad 10 gradually becomes dirty also as more and more dirt is rubbed back into the interior portion from the leading edges 10AL and 10BL. However, not until a far greater floor area has been cleaned, as compared to conventional mops, does the interior vertex area of the mop of the present invention accumulate so much dirt as to require rinsing, cleaning and drying of the pad 10.
4 This may be conveniently done by operation of the flexible sheet as illustrated in FIGS. 5 and 6. The eyelet 62 is lifted off hook 64 and the sheet 50 is wrapped over the entire area of the surfaces 10A and 10B of pad 10 by hooking the hooked ends 58 of the spaced arms 54- over the edge of the upstanding peripheral flange 30.
As illustrated in FIG. 5, the dimensions of the sheet 50 I are so chosen that this initial hooking-over maneuver causes some minor compression of the pad 10. Next, the handle 60 is pivoted in the direction of the arrow in FIG. 6 to cause the sheet 50 to bear down with greater pressure upon the pad 10, and the tabs 32 serve as stops and guides to prevent the pivot axis constituted by the interior bends in hooked ends 58 from sliding over the edge of flange 30, since such sliding would prevent an increase in pressure. With the structure shown in FIG. 6, a very substantial and uniform pressure is distributed over the entire pad 10 and, as a result, the pad is very substantially compressed to eliminate a large proportion of rinsing and cleaning fluids that have been absorbed therein. Thereafter, the eyelet 62 may be slipped back over the hook 64 to return the sheet 50 to its storage position and the mop is ready for reuse in the manner described above.
The invention has now been described in terms of its operating principles and one of its specific embodiments. Various changes in the specific embodiment will be obvious to those skilled in the art. For example, the sheet 50 can be provided with perforations to facilitate release of water or other cleaning fluids during compression of the pad 10. Also, other means for mechanical connection between the handle 38 and pad 10 can be used so long as the lower end of the handle is allowed to shift reciprocably from one side to the other side of the vertex of the pad with each forward and backward stroke of the handle. The obtuse angle of the pad can be varied from the angle illustrated in the drawings. For best results, it is preferred that the angle be Within the range from about 130 to about although other obtuse angles may be used. The slots 36 can have shapes other than shown, including straight slots. While the two cleaning surfaces 10A and 10B are shown to have equal areas, the areas or composition of these surfaces can be unequal or different.
What is claimed is:
1. A cleaning mop which comprises a cleaning pad having two substantially flat cleaning surfaces disposed at an obtuse angle, an elongated handle, pivotal means for connecting said pad to one end of said handle with the vertex of said obtuse angle disposed for contact with a floor, said connecting means permitting said connected end of said handle to cross from one side to an opposite side of a line bisecting said obtuse angle, whereby when said handle is alternately pushed and pulled with the cleaning pad on said floor, first one and then the other of said cleaning surfaces is correspondingly alternately pivoted about said vertex down into wiping engagement with said floor.
2. A mop as in claim 1 wherein said cleaning pad is compressible and absorbent, said mop further including a flexible wringing sheet, means for releasably holding said sheet attached to said handle in a storage position, and means for wrapping said sheet over the cleaning surfaces of said pad and then tightening said sheet to compress said pad and expel fluids which have been absorbed therein.
3. A mop as in claim 2 wherein one edge of said sheet is fixedly attached to said handle in a position adjacent one edge of said pad, and the opposite edge of said sheet may be released from said handle to wrap said sheet over the cleaning surfaces of said pad by positioning said releasable sheet edge adjacent an opposite edge of said pad, means for pivoting said releasable sheet edge in a direction which will cause said sheet to apply greater pressure upon said pad than when said sheet is first wrapped over said pad.
4. A mop as in claim 1 wherein said pad is made of resilient sponge material.
5. A mop as in claim 1 wherein said obtuse angle is within the range from about 130 to about 160.
6. A mop as in claim 1 wherein said pad is attached to a support plate, said plate having an obtuse angle substantially equal to the obtuse angle of said pad, and said plate also having four peripheral flanges, three of said flanges extending down over three sides of said pad and the fourth said flange extending away from the fourth side of said pad.
7. A mop as in claim 6 wherein said support plate is provided with a pair of cross-braces on the upper surface thereof, each of said cross-braces having a slot which crosses over the vertex of said obtuse angle in said pad, a transverse rod at the connected end of said handle, said transverse rod extending into said slots and being free to ride from one end to an opposite end thereof, whereby said transverse rod is shifted from one side to an opposite side of said vertex when said handle is alternately pushed and pulled.
8. A mop as in claim 6 wherein said pad is provided with a backing on the surface thereof immediately adjacent said support plate, two strips of rigid material sandwiched between said backing and said pad, each said strip having a pair of threaded studs projecting through said backing, said studs extending up through holes in said support plate and being secured with nuts screwed on to said studs at the opposite side of said plate to lock said pad and plate together.
9. A mopas in claim 6 wherein said two cleaning surfaces have substantially equal areas.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,601,537 6/1952 Lofgren 15231 XR 2,876,476 3/1959 Woods 15-23l XR 2,897,528 8/1959 Greenleaf 151l9.l XR
FOREIGN PATENTS 15,199 6/1914 Great Britain. 213,177 3/ 1924 Great Britain. 235,084 6/ 1925 Great Britain.
DANIEL BLUM, Primary Examiner.
US. Cl. X.R.