US 3545652 A
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united States Patent Eugene W. Davis 425 Kerr Road, Tipp City, Ohio 45371 [2!] Appl. No. 781,068
[22} Filed Dec. 4, 1968  Patented Dec. 8, 1970  Inventor  SOAP DISPENSING DEVICE FOR AUTOMATIC DISHWASHERS 3 Claims, 2 Drawing Figs.
 0.8. CI. 222/484 B67d 3/00 Field of Search 222/484,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 70l,086 5/1902 Puddefoot 222/484 3,207,483 9/ I965 Ranson 220/8X 3,317,093 5/1967 Moran 222/484 Primary Examiner-Stanley H. Tollberg Attorney-Dybvig & Dybvig ABSTRACT: A simple, inexpensive device for mixing and discharging cleansing powders in water solutions isdisclosed, the device comprising a tray and a sleeve encircling the tray. The sleeve and the tray have appropriate openings for water inlet and discharge. The areas of the water inlet and discharge openings are simultaneously changed by movement of the sleeve on the tray.
PATENTEU DEC 8 I978 INVENTOR.
EUGENE W DAVIS is: J 5 Z H/S ATTORNEYS SOAP DISPENSING DEVICE FOR AUTOMATIC DISHWASHERS This invention relates to a soap dispensing device and more particularly to a soap dispensing device for use in automatic dishwashers and the like.
Automatic dishwashers, such as used in restaurants and cafeterias, should have an automatic soap dispensing device for maintaining adequate quantities of soap in the cleansing solution throughout the dishwashing cycle. Very elaborate dispensing devices have been developed especially for use in automatic dishwashers which are in continuous or nearly continuous operation. For smaller restaurants or cafeterias, which use a dishwasher only two or three times a day, the more elaborate dispensing devices are prohibitively expensive. As a result, some have no automatic soap dispenser and occasionally the person in charge of-washing dishes neglects to add soap during the wash cycle. Some soap dispensing devices have been developed for use in less elaborate dishwashers but these have either been too expensive or inadequate for long periods of use. For example, they frequently become clogged without the knowledge of the person in charge of dishwashing and inadequate quantities of soap are then added to the cleansing solution.
In accordance with this invention, a soap dispensing device is provided which is simple and inexpensive yet rugged and which satisfactorily operates to insure that soap is added to a cleansing solution throughout a dishwashing cycle. The device, which comprises a soap tray with a sliding valve member for its water inlet and discharge openings, can easily be adjusted to vary the quantities of soap added to the cleansing solution. The device is extremely simple in operation and, therefore, can be used by relatively unskilled people.
Referring to the drawing:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a soap dispensing device made in accordance with this invention; and
FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view of the device of FIG. 1.
Referring to the drawing in greater detail, a soap dispensing device in accordance with this invention is generally designated and comprises a tray or reservoir 12 of a rectangular construction having a rectangular bottom wall 14, parallel, rectangular front and rear end walls 16 and 18, respectively, and parallel, rectangular side walls 20 and 22. Joining the side walls 20 and 22 and the rear end wall 18 is a partial cover plate 24, the leading edge of which is spaced from the front end wall 16 as best illustrated in FIG. 2. The tray 12 is of a hollow, thin-walled construction and its various walls and the cover plate 24 may be made from sheet metal or plastic. The uncovered or open top portion of the tray 12 between the leading edge of the partial cover 24 and the front end wall 16 serves as an inlet opening, designated 26, for water circulating in an automatic dishwasher, as indicated by the arrows A in FIG. 1. Formed in the side wall 22 immediately adjacent the bottom wall 14 is an elongate rectangular slot or opening 28 defined by surface portions of the side wall 22 and the bottom wall 14 which serves as a water outlet or discharge slot for solutions of soap and water as indicated by the arrows B in FIG. 1.
Slidably mounted on the tray 12 is a thin-walled, hollow, rectangular, tubular valve member or sleeve 30 which has a top plate 32, bottom plate 34 and side plates 36 and 38. An elongate rectangular slot or opening 40 is formed in the sleeve side plate 38 and defined by surface portions of the side plate 38 and the bottom plate 34. The apertures 28 and 40 can be alined and may be substantially identical in size and shape. As apparent, when the tray 12 and sleeve 30 are assembled, the top plate 32 of the sleeve 30 covers a portion of the inlet opening 26 thus limiting its size. Stop means are provided for preventing the inlet opening 26 to be completely closed by the confronting the leading edge 44 from the tray front end wall 16 thus determines the minimum uncovered size of the inlet opening 26.
In operation a powdered soap or detergent is poured through the inlet opening 26 into the front end of the tray 12. The assembled device 10 is then placed on the scrap tray or other convenient surface in the wash tank of an automatic dishwasher. During the wash cycles, the covered rear portion of the tray 12 serves as a mixing chamber for the soap or detergent and water, the mixed solution thereof flowing out of the water outlet slot 28. It will be observed that the area of the outlet slot 28 is less than the size of the inlet opening 26 re gardless of the position of the sleeve 30. Accordingly, the
discharge of the cleansing solution from the outlet slot 28 will occur at a slower rate than the flow of circulated water into the device 10 through the inlet opening 26. Thorough mixing of the soap or detergent and water in the mixing chamber is thus assured.
The open area of both the inlet opening 26 and the outlet slot 28 are easily and simultaneously changed by sliding the sleeve 30 along the tray 12. As the sleeve 30 is advanced toward the front end wall 16 from the position illustrated in FIG. 1, the uncovered area of both the inlet opening 26 and the outlet slot 28 are reduced. Thus it is seen that the sleeve 30 serves as a valve member for changing the open area of both the inlet and discharge openings simultaneously. The sleeve 30 preferably fits snugly on the tray 12 so that it is frictionally held into adjusted position. If desired, ribs, knurlings or the like (not shown) canbe formed on adjoining surfaces of the tray '12 and sleeve 30 to enhance the frictional force therebetween.
It is apparent that the greatest amount of soap or detergent will be added to the cleansing solution at the beginning of the wash cycle and, when the device 10 is properly adjusted, an adequate level of soap or detergent is maintained in the cleaning solution throughout the wash cycle. By trial and error the operator of the dishwashing equipment can determine how much soap or detergent should be loaded into the tray 12 and the appropriate position of the sleeve 30 on the tray 12.
The inlet opening and outlet slot are desirably sufiiciently large that they will not become clogged during use. For example, the slot 28 may be on the order of one-half inch by 2% inches and the width of the tray on the order of 6 inches. The device 10 can easily be kept clean simply by disassembling the parts 12 and 30 and rinsing them with fresh water.
1. A soap dispensing device for use in an automatic dishwasher comprising a tray having a water inlet opening in its top and a water outlet slot located along a sidewall portion thereof; said water inlet opening being larger than said water outlet slot; a portion of said tray defining a mixing chamber; a
sleeve snugly received and slidable on said tray; said sleeve having a slot adapted to be alined with said water outlet slot and having surface portions adapted to cover portions of said water inlet opening; and said sleeve being arranged for sliding movement on said tray to increase or decrease the uncovered areas of both said water inlet opening and said water outlet slot simultaneously.
2. The device of claim 1 wherein said tray has a generally rectangular configuration and said sleeve is of a generally rectangular, tubular construction.
3. The device of claim 1 further including a stop member on said tray positioned to limit the minimum size of said water inlet opening.