|Publication number||US3580008 A|
|Publication date||May 25, 1971|
|Filing date||Apr 24, 1969|
|Priority date||Apr 24, 1969|
|Publication number||US 3580008 A, US 3580008A, US-A-3580008, US3580008 A, US3580008A|
|Inventors||Barnard Walter C, Hodapp Donald C|
|Original Assignee||Whirlpool Co|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (4), Referenced by (14), Classifications (11), Legal Events (1)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
United States Patent  Inventors Walter C. Barnard White Bear Lake; Donald C. Hodapp, St. Paul, Minn.  App]. No. 818,973  Filed Apr. 24, 1969  Patented May 25, 1971 [73 Assignee Whirlpool Corporation  ICEMAKER WITH WATER DISTRIBUTOR 16 Claims, 10 Drawing Figs.
 U.S. Cl 62/347, 165/117, 239/553.5, 239/567  Int. Cl. F256 1/12  Field of Search 62/74, 347; 239/566, 553.5, 567; 165/117 [5 6] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,784,563 3/ 1957 Baker 239/566X 239/566X 239/566X 239/566X 2,865,830 12/1958 Zoldas 3,020,579 2/ 1962 OConnor... 3,126,574 3/1964 Fox Primary Examiner-William E. Wayner Attorney-Hofgren, Wegner, Allen, Stellman & McCord ABSTRACT: An icemaker having a refrigerated member over a surface of which water is directed to form an ice slab and including a water distributor with an internal reservoir means for receiving water and a plurality of outlets for distributing water along the width of the ice slab portion of the refrigerated member and flow-impeding means in the reservoir for impeding flow of water through the reservoir for achieving substantially even distribution of water within the reservoir means before flow through the outlet means in order that the water distribution is even onto the refrigerated member to aid in the formation of an ice slab of substantially uniform thickness.
Patented May 25, 1971 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTORS WALTER C.BARNARD DONALD C.HODAPP BY fi E' ATTORNEYS Patented May 25, 1971 2 shea -Sheet 2 FIG? FIG. IO
ICEMAKER WITH WATER DISTRIBUTOR One of the features of this invention is to provide an icemaker having an improved water distributor for distributing water evenly across a refrigerated member in order that the water and thus the resulting ice slab will be of substantially uniform thickness throughout.
Other features and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following description of several embodiments thereof taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. Of the drawings:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an icemaker embodying the invention.
FIG. 2 is a front elevational view of one embodiment of the water distributor shown in FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken substantially along line 3-3 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is an elevational view of the distributor of FIG. 2 taken from the position of line 4-4 of FIG. 3.
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary longitudinal sectional view taken substantially along line 5-5 of FIG. 3.
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary longitudinal sectional view through a second embodiment of a water distributor.
FIG. 7 is a sectional view taken substantially along line 7-7 of FIG. 6.
FIG. 8 is a fragmentary elevational view of one end of another embodiment of the water distributor.
FIG. 9 is an end elevational view taken from the left end of FIG. 8.
FIG. 10 is a fragmentary sectional view taken substantially along line 10l0 ofFIG. 8.
In the embodiment of FIGS. 1-5 the icemaker as shown in FIG. 1 in perspective is of the same general type as shown and described in Swanson US Pat. No. 3,230,736 assigned to the same assignee as the present application. This icemaker comprises a refrigerated member 10 in the form of an inclined plate having refrigerant passages (not shown) therein, a water distributor 11 mounted adjacent the upper end of the plate 10 on a vertical flange 12 extending upwardly from the raised rear end 13 of the evaporator plate 10, a water-receiving trough 14 beneath the lower end 15 of the plate 10, an electrically heated wire grid 16 onto which the formed slab 17 slides when released from the plate 10 to be cut into cube size portions 18 and an ice receiver 19 into which the cubes 18 fall.
In order to provide distribution of water over the evaporator plate 10 to form the ice slab there is provided a drain 20 from the trough 14 into a waterreceptacle 21 and a water circulating pump 22 having its inlet within thewater in the receptacle and its outlet connected to a tube 23 that connects to the inlet means 24 to the water distributor 11.
With the icemaker as described the pump 22 circulates water over the top inclined surface of the evaporator plate 10 by way of the trough 14, drain 20, receptacle 21, pump 22, tube 23 and back to the water distributor 11. When the ice slab 17 is ofthe desired thickness it is automatically released to slide onto the heated cutter wires 14 which subdivide the slab into cubes 18 which fall into the trough 19, as previously described. I
One embodiment of the water distributor 11 is shown in FIGS. 25. As is disclosed here, the water distributor 11 is in the form of an elongated member or tube 25 whose interior serves as a reservoir means for receiving the water to be distributed. The elongated tube 25 is closed at its opposite ends by removable closures, here shown as rubber plugs 26. The tubular inlet 24 is located at about the center of the elongated tube 25 and as shown in FIG. I is substantially horizontal and is positioned at the front of the tube 25 so that water entering the tubular inlet 24 as indicated by the arrow 27 projects water toward the rear 28 of the elongated tube 25.
The location of the water distributor inlet means relative to the water distributor outlet holes affects the water flow as the more direct the flow path the greater the flow of water. Thus, the more remote distributor outlet holes may not deliver the desired flow of water. This problem is solved by the present invention as described below.
Located within the elongated reservoir member tube 25 are flow-impeding means 30 for impeding or retarding flow of water between the inlet means tube 24 and spaced outlet means 29 which are in the form of a plurality of holes in the elongated tube 25. In the embodiment of FIGS. 35 this impeding means is in the form of spaced baffle members 30 located at the rear 28 of the tube 25. The bafile members 30, between the end ones of which are located the water outlet holes 29, have vertical inner edges 31 that are substantially in a common plane that is generally at right angles to the central axis of the tubular inlet 24. Thus this common plane is also parallel to the longitudinal axis of the elongated reservoir tube 25. Thus, as shown, these inner edges 31 of the bafiles 30 are substantially vertical and the water outlet holes 29 are positioned adjacent the bottoms of the vertical bafiles 30 and at the rear 28 of the tube 25. As shown most clearly in FIG. 3, the holes 29 are positioned adjacent the bottom of the lower rear quadrant of the tube 25.
The baffle members or ribs 30 prevent a direct line flow of the water from the inlet means tube 24 to any of the outlet holes 29. Also, the baffle members 30 define chambers 30a (FIG. 5) in which the water pressure is substantially equal, assuring uniform water flow from the distributor.
As is shown most clearly in FIG. 4 all of the water outlet holes 29 are spaced laterally of the water inlet tube 24 in order that this even distribution'of water through all holes will be maintained.
Additionally, the spacing between certain of the outlets is varied to facilitate uniform water distribution. Specifically,'as shown in FIG. 4, the spacing between adjacent holes 29a and 29b on either side of the inlet 24' is approximately four times greater than the spacing between adjacent holes 29 at locations more remote from the inlet means. This increased spacing between the outlet holes closest to the inlet ensures a relatively indirect water flow path between the inlet and all outlet holes.
Thus, there will be substantially even distribution of water in the interior which serves as the reservoir means prior to the flow of the water from the outlet holes 29, 29a and 29b. This results in an even volumetric flow of water through all of the outlet holes 29, 29a and 29b as indicated in FIG. 5 with the result that the slab 17 of ice that is formed on the refrigerated plate 10 is of substantially uniform thickness throughout and this of course ensures the production of unifonn ice cubes 18.
The present invention provides an even flow of water over the evaporator plate 10 despite variations in the supply water pressure or flow. In addition, the provision of the rib members 30 defining chambers 30a prevents a directed velocity pressure in association with certain of the water outlet holes 29.
As mentioned earlier, the water distributor 11 is positioned against the vertical flange 12 on the rear raised end of the evaporator plate 10. In order to aid the proper positioning-of the member 12 on this flange there are provided on the rear 28 of the tube 25 spaced flanges 32 having coplanar vertical rear surfaces 33 adapted to bear against this flange 12.
As shown in FIG. 3 each water outlet hole 29 is flared outwardly from its inner end 34 to its outer end 35. In the illustrated embodiment this flare is about and is in a vertical plane (FIG. 4) with the inner end 34 being substantially circular and the outer end 35 vertically oval.
In the embodiment of FIGS. 6 and 7 the water distributor 36 is likewise an elongated cylinder and has a tubular inlet 37 at about the center. Within the reservoir portion 38 of the distributor there is provided a single longitudinal baffle 39 extending upwardly from the bottom 40 of the cylinder 38 but short of the top thereof. 'The water inlet 37 is located on one side of the baffle 39 and the plurality of water outlets 41 are located on the other side of the baffle and adjacent the bottom 40 of the distributor.
In the embodiment of FIGS. 8, 9 and 10 the water distributor 42 is again an elongated cylinder but now has a mounting bracket 43 at each end for mounting on the icemaker and the water inlet is axial as indicated by the arrow 44 in FIG. 8 either from one end 45 or from both ends. In this embodiment also there are provided a plurality of spaced bafiles or rib members 46 at the rear of the distributor 42 with water outlet openings 47 located between the baffles 46. lt is preferred here also that the openings 47 be in the lower rear quadrant of the tubular distributor and that the baffles 46 extend upwardly therefrom.
The baffles or rib members 46 may advantageously be provided with sidewalls having an angular disposition of at least with respect to vertical to facilitate periodic cleaning of the water distributor with a bottle brush. Such cleaning is more difi'rcult where the sidewalls are vertical. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 10 the angle a is approximately The water distributor of this invention not only results in an ice slab and thus ice cubes of substantially uniform thickness but also greatly reduces the noise level of water flowing through the icemaker so that additional noise suppressants are not ordinarily required.
Having described our invention as related to the embodiment shown in the accompanying drawings, it is our intention that the invention be not limited by any of the details of description, unless otherwise specified.
The embodiment of the invention in which we claim an exclusive property or privilege, is defined as follows:
1. An icemaker, comprising: a refrigerated member having a surface thereon with width and length over which water is directed to form an ice slab; a water distributor including an internal reservoir means for receiving water under pressure having an inlet means and a plurality of outlet means at the rear of said distributor and above said refrigerated member for projecting water along said width for flow over said length; and flow-impeding means in said reservoir means for impeding flow of water between said inlet means and outlet means and thereby achieving substantially even distribution of water in said reservoir means prior to flow from said outlet means.
2. The icemaker of claim 1 wherein said reservoir means comprises an elongated member positioned adjacent the rear of said refrigerated member for flow of water over said surface from rear to front thereof in the formation of said ice slab, and said reservoir inlet means is located adjacent the front of said reservoir means and projects water toward the rear of the reservoir means, and said impeding means are located at said reservoir means rear adjacent said outlet means.
3. The icemaker of claim 1 wherein said flow-impeding means comprises a plurality of spaced baffle members within said reservoir means.
4. The icemaker of claim 3 wherein said reservoir means comprises an elongated member, said baffle members extend inwardly from said rear thereof and have unconfined inner edges for flow of water thereover, and said outlet means are located between said baffle members.
5. The icemaker of claim 4 wherein said inlet means is located adjacent the front of said reservoir means elongated member and projects water toward the rear of said elongated member where said baffle members are located.
6. The icemaker of claim 5 wherein said inlet means has a central axis substantially at right angles to said elongated member, and said baffle members have said inner edges substantially in a common plane that is at right angles to said axis.
7. The icemaker of claim 6 wherein said baffle members and said edges are substantially vertical, and said water outlet means are located between and adjacent the bottoms of said baffle members.
'8. The icemaker of claim 3 wherein said outlet means comprises a plurality of spaced holes and the spacing of a pair of holes adjacent the inlet means is greater than the spacing of a pair of holes more remote from the inlet means.
9. The icemaker of claim 3 wherein said baffle members are rib members having sides 'with an angular disposition of at least 15 with respect to vertical to facilitate periodic cleaning of the water distributor.
10. The icemaker of claim 4 wherein said water inlet means is located at at least one end of said elongated member,
11. The icemaker of claim 10 wherein each of said elonmember.
13. The icemaker of claim 4 wherein said elongated member is substantially cylindrical and said outlet means are located in the bottom rear quadrant of said elongated member.
14. The icemaker of claim 13 wherein said inlet means has a central axis substantially at right angles to said elongated member, said baffle members have inner edges substantially in a common plane that is at right angles to said axis, said baffle members and said edges are substantially vertical, and said water outlet means are located adjacent the bottoms of said bafile members.
15. The icemaker of claim 4 wherein each of said outlet means comprises a hole that flares outwardly from its inner end to its outer end, thereby distributing an elongated spray of water on said refrigerated member.
16. The icemaker of claim 15 wherein each said flare is substantially entirely in a vertical plane.
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|U.S. Classification||62/347, 165/117, 239/567, 239/553.5|
|International Classification||F25C1/12, F25C5/14, F25C5/00|
|Cooperative Classification||F25C1/12, F25C5/14|
|European Classification||F25C5/14, F25C1/12|
|May 9, 1983||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: KING-SEELEY THERMOS CO., ALBERT LEA, MN A DE CORP.
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:WHIRLPOOL CORPORATION A DE CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004125/0763
Effective date: 19830314