US 3716122 A
A mechanical linkage between the line switch generally included in the timer knob, and the interior of a centerpost agitator washing machine which latches the door closed when the switch is moved to an on position and which moves the switch to an off position when contacted due to excessive gyrations of the inner tub from an unbalanced condition.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
[ Feb. 13,1973
United States Patent [191 Bakeretal.
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 Assignee: Email Limited, Sidney, New South wmans  ABSTRACT linkage between the Wales, Australia March 19, 1971 22 Filed:
A mechanical line switch generally included in the timer knob, and the interior  Appl. No.: 126,090
- of a centerpost agitator washing machine which 192/136 200/6145 200/61'7 latches the door closed when the switch is moved to  US. Cl.
an on position and which moves the switch to an off position when contacted due to excessive gyrations of the inner tub from an unbalanced condition.
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4 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,236,530 8/1917 Balzer 192/136 IPATENTEDFEBIB ma 3,716Q122 sum 10F 3 PATENTEUFEB 13 1975 3.716122 I SHEETZUF 3 PAIENTEUEEB 13 I975 r FIG.3.
SHEET 30F 3 machine when contacted from excessive gyrations of the spinning tub or its support, are well known safety features for center-post washing machines.
shown in US. Pat. No. 3,145,818, issued to D. E. Stelli, Aug. 25, 1964, however, as is common both in safety apparatus to latch the door or unbalance apparatus to deenergize the machine, a switch, other than the main switch is utilized which is placed internally of the machine generally adjacent the clothes tub.
tor clothes washing machine;
. FIG. 2 is a sectional side elevation of a safety device as applied to a clothes washing machine of FIG. 1;
Ill-Ill in FIG. 2 withthe door partly open;
LID LATCH FOR WASHING APPARATUS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Description of the Prior Art For safety reasons it is well known to provide a centerpost agitator type washer with a latching mechanism to maintain the door in a closed position. Such is generally accomplished through some electrical con- .trol which is generally energized during the high speed spin extraction mode of operation to prevent the user from opening thelid at least during this operation and for a shortperiod thereafter (to allow the basket to coast to a stop).
Further, unbalance switches which deenergize the A combined door latch and unbalance switch is In the present invention, the mam switch, generally Thus, in accordance with this invention, any time the door to the machine is open, the main switch must be off. Further, if the main switch which is readily visible to the operator is moved to its off position due to an unbalanced condition, it is quite apparent to the operator why the operation of the machine has terminated and that the clothes must be redistributed and the main switch manually re-closed.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION As a safety feature for a washing machine, a latching mechanism is provided for the door which, through appropriate mechanical linkage to the main switch, generally associated with the control knob, requires the door to be closed before the switch can be closed, latches the lid in the closed position once the switch has been manually moved to its on position, and further moves the main switch, and thus the control knob, to the off position in response to excessive vibration of the clothes containing tub.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective top view of a centerpost agita- FIG. 3 is a sectional front elevation taken on line 6 FIG. 4 is a sectional plan taken on line IV-IV in 5 FIG. 2;
FIG. 5 is a plan of a latch bar shown in 'FIG. 2;
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary sectional view taken on line Vl-VI in FIG. 2 but with the door closed.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the illustrated embodiment of the invention, a washing machine of the top load agitator type includes a conventional cabinet structure 7 within which is mounted an open-top rotatable perforate basket 8 nested within an imperforate outer tub 9, which except for being nonrotatable is movable with the basket in that it remains concentric with it. An opening 10 in the top wall 11 of the cabinet gives access to the basket to permit loading and unloading of articles to be washed, and in accordance with usual practice a door 12 is hinged on the cabinet to serve as a closure for the access opening 10. Conveniently, the top wall of the cabinet surrounding the access opening tapers or is stepped downwardly as indicated at the tapered surround 13.
A conventional clothes guard 38 is shown in FIG. 2 inserted in the basket 8 in the normal manner.
An agitator assembly 14 centrally located within the basket is coupled to drive means to carry out work operations, such as washing, on articles in the basket in accordance with a program set by a control device such as a conventional timer mechanism. The drive means includes an electric motor and drive transmission mechanism so that in addition to operating the agitator 14 the basket 8 can be selectively rotated at high speeds to carry out other work operations, such as spindrying of articles in the basket sequentially to or independently of the above program. For a more detailed description of the program control see copending application Ser. No. 735,123 now US. Pat. No. 3,638,457 of common assignee.
In this instance, and as is generally the situation, the control device or timer includes an on-line switch which when actuated energizes the electric circuit of the drive means, the circuit including various elements such as pressure switches, temperature switches and the like commensurate with the cycle or cycles to be controlled by the timer. The timer is mounted on a forwardly facing control panel 15 towards the rear of the top wall of the cabinet structure and it includes an operating shaft 16 adapted to actuate the switch. This shaft projects forwardly of the control panel to terminate in a control member in the form of a handpiece or knob 17. The arrangement is such that the line switch is actuated by pulling the control knob 17 away from the control panel to cause movement of the shaft 16 along its axis, de-energization being effected by the reverse movement of the control knob and shaft.
Referring now to FIG. 2, the latch means of the present invention includes a latch member or bar 18 having an end portion 18a which is slidably mounted on the underside of the top wall 1 l of the cabinet structure to permit longitudinal movement of the latch bar 18. An intermediate portion 19 of the latch bar is angled downwardly so that the other or free end 20 thereof is positioned below the stepped or tapered surround 13 of the access opening 10, the latch'bar 18 terminating just short of the access opening. As is seen, the latch bar is mounted on the underside of the top wall 11 remote from the tapered surround of the access opening and beneath the control panel by means of a pair of spaced apart screws 21 which pass through respective elongated slots 22 in the latch bar and anchor in the top wall, the latch bar being urged towards the top wall by compression springs 23 sleeved on each screw 21 between its head and the bar 18.
The latch means also includes a generally upright lever arm 24 medially fulcrumed at 25 on the control panel 15. The upper end of the lever 24 is engaged about the control knob timer shaft 16 so that pivotal movement of the lever will move the timer shaft axially into the on and off positions of the line switch. That portion of the lever 24 below the fulcrum point 25 is directed rearwardly so that the lower-end 26 of the lever passes freely through an opening in the top wall, and substantially at right angles to a hole 27 in the mounting end 18a of the latch bar 18 between the mounting screws 21. The lower end 26 of the lever arm 24 is received within a hole or slot 28 in a substantially horizontal flange of a bracket 29 dependent from and fixed, as by a spot weld, on the mounting end 18a of the latch bar 18 so that longitudinal movement of the latch bar in either direction will result in pivotal movement the influence of the spring bias of the springs 23 mounting the latch bar, and the latch bar is at the extremity of 30 its travel toward the access opening. Thus, at the beginning of an operating cycle for the washing machine the tab 30 will engage in the slot 31 when the door is open to permit loading of the basket and in so doing will prevent longitudinal movement of the latch bar, and hence pivotal movement of the lever arm, so as to hold the control knob 17 and associated line switch in its off position.
The door is provided witha hook or L-shaped catch 34 (see FIGS. 5 and 6) which, when the door is closed, passes through the slot 31 in the access surround and through an L-shaped slot 32 in the latch bar adjacent the tab 30 so to bear against a deflector plate 33 dependent from and fixed on the latch bar 18 so to depress the latch bar against its spring bias to release the tab 30 from the slot 31. The release of tab 30 frees the latch bar 18, thereby rendering the controlknob movable,
into its on position. When the control knob is then actuated to on position, the lever arm is rocked and the latch bar moved longitudinally away from the access opening. The latch receiving slot 32 in the latch bar is so formed that the lateral arm of the L catch 34 is locked beneath an area 35 of the latch bar 18 upon the movement of the latch bar away from the access opening, thereby locking the door in its closed position until such time as the control device is moved to off position.
In order to cease the operation of the machine upon the occurrence of an undue off-balance load, there is provided on the top of the non-rotatable outer tub 9 a striker bar 36 adapted to bear against a strike plate 37 dependent from and attached to the latch bar when the basket moves too far offcenter, as shown in broken lines in FIG. 2. As will be seen in FIG. 2, the strike plate 37 and the deflector plate 33 may conveniently be formed by a single member fixed to the latch bar as by welding. When the striker bar bears against the plate 37 the latch bar is moved longitudinally towards the access opening and in so doing rocks the lever arm 24 about fulcrum 25 which in turn moves the control knob and line switch to an off position and also moves the latch bar to an unlocking position.
It will be appreciated that various modifications may be made in details of design and construction. For example, the control device or timer may be operated in a reverse manner so that the control knob is pushed towards the control panel and in such case the latch bar and lever are re-arranged to provide and permit opposite movement. Additionally, the latch means and control device could be arranged to energize a brake associated with the drive means, the break acting to bring the basket to a rapid halt instead of coasting to a stop after a spin operation.
1. In a laundry apparatus having cabinet structure housing a rotatable basket nested within a movable tub, said cabinet defining an access opening to said basket, door structure hingedly attached to said cabinet for movement between an open and closed position with respect to said opening, apparatus control means including a switch manually movable between on and off positions for initiating and terminating respectively the operation of said apparatus, wherein the improvement comprises:
means associated with said switch for preventing movement of said switch to an on position when said door is in any position other than closed and including means for moving said switch from an on position to an off position in response to excessive movement of said tub, said means associated with said switch comprising:
latch means connected to said switch and movable between a first position coinciding with a switch off position for blocking movement of said switch to said on position, a second position coinciding with a switch off position for permitting movement of said switch to said on position, and a third position coinciding with said switch on position;
catch means mounted on said door and cooperating with said latch means to move said latch means from said first to said second position when said door is completely closed; and,
strike means on said tub to move said latch means from said third to said second position in response to excessive movement of said tub, whereby,
said door must be closed before said switch can be manually moved to said on position, with movement of said switch to said on position moving said latch means to said third position for access by said strike means during excessive movement of said tub such that said latch means will be moved to said second position and thus said switch to said off position if struck by said strike means.
2. Structure according to claim 1 wherein said latch means includes locking structure movable from a generally recessed position to an interference position for engaging said catch means preventing said door structure from being opened in response to said latch means moving from said second position to said third position, whereby,
said door structure is prevented from being opened when said switch is in said on position.
3. Structure according to claim 2 wherein said latch means comprises:
a latch bar and means mounting said latch bar on said cabinet for permitting movement of said latch bar in two distinct planes;
a lever having one end engaging said latch bar and the opposite end engaging said movable switch, said lever movable to position said switch in either said on or off position in response to movement of said latch bar in one of said planes;
said latch bar including a stop member cooperating with cabinet to prevent movement of said latch bar in said one of said planes; and,
said latch bar further including a portion cooperating with said catch means when said door is closed for moving said latch bar to the other of said two planes to release said stop member from said cabinet and thereby permit movement of the latchbar in said one of said planes, whereby,
said switch is prevented from movement to said on position when said door is in any position other than closed.
4. Structure according to claim 3 wherein said first position of said latch bar corresponds to said stop member being in said position cooperating with said cabinet to prevent movement of said latch bar and said switch is in said off position, said second position of said latch bar corresponds to said door being closed and said catch member abutting said stop member to said release position and said switch is in an off position, and said third position of said latch bar corresponds to said door being closed and said locking structure being in said position cooperating with said catch means preventing said door being opened and said switch is in said on position.