US 3749880 A
Apparatus for heating flowable material dispensed from a pressurized container including a housing to receive the pressurized container and a hollow, double walled heat exchanger assembly having a spiral passageway between the double walls through which the material to be heated flows. Hermetically sealed inside the heat exchanger inwardly of the inner wall thereof is an electric heating element and a switch for controlling the heating element. The switch has contacts movable to a closed position by a magnet from outside the heat exchanger and automatically to an open position by a bimetal responsive to a predetermined elevated temperature inside the heat exchanger.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [1 1 Meeks I APPARATUS FOR HEATING FLOWABLE MATERIAL  inventor: Frederick T. Meeks, Asheboro, NC.
 Assignee: General Electric Company,
22 Filed: Sept. 15, 1971 1211 Appl. No.: 180,581
 US. Cl 219/214, 219/304, 219/308,
219/328, 219/512, 222/146 l-lA, 239/135, 337/358  Int. Cl. H051) 1/02, B67d 5/62, 1105b 3/00  Field of Search..'..2l9/296309, 327, 328, 331,
146 HA, 146 R;137/341;239/13 3135  References Cited UN1TED STATES PATENTS 3,098,925 7/1963 Fouls et al. 219/214 1,484,451 2/1924 Shoenberg 219/331 X 2,291,423 7/1942 Tiscornia 219/299 UX 2,268,445 12/1941 Drapeau 337/358 1,419,225 6/1922 Colebrook 219/299 X 3,358,885 12/1967 Flowers 219/214 UX 451 July 31 1973 3,498,504 3/1970 Wilkins 222/146 l-lA 3,207,369 9/1965 Rossi 222/146 HA 3,335,910 8/1967 Rossi 219/214 UX 1,692,869 11/1928 Scanlan... 219/306 UX 10/1934 Staley 219/306 Primary Examiner-A, Bartis Attorney-Lawrence R. Kempton, Leonard .1. Plan a and Frederick P. Weidner et a1.
.[571 ABSTR H Apparatus for heating flowable material dispensed from a pressurized container including a housing to receive the pressurized container and a hollow, double walled heat exchanger assembly having a spiral passageway between the double walls through which the material to be heated flows. Hermetically sealed inside the heat exchanger inwardly of the inner wall thereof 7 is an electric heating element and a switch for controlling the heating element. The switch has contacts movable to a closed position by a magnet from outside the heat exchanger and automatically to an open position by a bimetal responsive to a predetermined elevated temperature inside the heat exchanger.
I 4 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures APPARATUS FOR HEATING FLOWABLE MATERIAL BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION ers, have been known for some time. Conventional pressurized containers use a propellant gas to discharge foam products from the containers. Generally, the propellant gas is dispersed throughout the product under pressure and in liquefied form. Upon release of the discharge outlet of the container, the propellant forces the product out of the container and, simultaneously, expands to form gas bubbles and generate the foam.
Expansion of the propellant from a liquid to a gas, however, has a cooling effect on the foam product. This cooling effect is particularly undesirable in shaving cream because cold shaving cream foams are not only uncomfortable, but also are slow in softening the beard for the shaving operation. Human hair is more easily shaved when softened by the penetration of moisture from the shave cream, and this softening effect increases with increasing shave cream temperature. For this reason, numerous heating apparatus or devices have been proposed for heating foam shave cream as it is discharged from the containers to increase the ease and effectiveness of shaving;
Foam shave cream is difficult to heat, however, since the gas bubbles in the foam act as heat insulatorsnFurther, such foam has a high viscosity and although it is desirable to constrict the passage of foam so that heat can be more quickly transferred to it, such constriction of flow prevents the heated foam from being supplied to the user at a useful rate.
Some of the previously proposed'devices for heating foam shave cream provide a reservoir for hot tap water that has passageway means through the reservoir for the shave cream. This invention, however, relates particularly to a shave cream dispenser utilizing electrical heating means for heating the foam. With such shave cream dispensers being used in a water environment such as in bathrooms, it is important thatthey be constructed so that the electrical components of the dispenser are hermetically sealed to thoroughly protect the components from moisture and also isolate them from the user to minimize potential electrical shock hazard. I
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION v apparatus for heating flowable material discharged from the outlet of a pressurized container, such as.
shave cream, which includes a housing adapted to receive the pressurized container and having an outlet forv ultimate discharge of the heated flowable material from the housing, a heat exchanger assembly having an inlet and an outlet including a'passageway-for conducting the flowable material of the pressurized container from the inlet to the outlet, electric heating means in heat transfer relationship with said passageway, and switch means within the heat exchanger having contacts movable to open and closed positions. The heat exchanger is sealed to prevent any moisture from entering the heat exchanger where the electrical components are located. There is also provided in the apparatus, control means for the electric heating means which includes an actuator for the switch and a first means including said contacts of the switch for moving the contacts to a closed position to complete the circuit across a power source, and a second means to automatically move said contacts to an open position to break the circuit across the power source responsive to a predetermined.ele-- vated temperature.
proved apparatus for heating shave cream utilizing electric heating means for heating shave cream dispensed from a pressurized container.
It is also an object of this invention to provide apparatus utilizing electric heating means to heat flowable material, such as shave cream dispensed from a pressurized container, which has the electrical components sealed against moisture and isolated from the user.
' BRIEF DESCRIPTION or THE DRAWINGS FIG. I is a perspective view of my heatiadshaveh cream dispenser. I
FIG. 2 is a partial cross-sectional view of my heated shave cream dispenser showing the pressurized con- FIG. 4 is a partially cut-away perspective view of the heat exchanger without the switch.
FIG. 5 is' a perspective view'of the pressurized .con tainer, heat exchanger, and mechanism for operating my heated shave cream dispenser.
. FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view of the pressurized DESCRIPTION oF THE'PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the drawings in detail, FIG. 1 illustratesmy heated shave cream dispenser having a plastic molded housing 10, the base 12 of which is readily detachable from the rest of the housing so thatit may be removedfor replacement of the pressurized container.
' The front panel 14 of the housing 10 has attached to it an outlet spout 16 with an opening '18 for discharge of the heated shave cream from the housing. The top 20 In accordance with this invention, there is provided ized container 32 containing shave cream-with the dispensing outlet thereof inserted into an axially movable valve actuator 34 retained bya circular internal upstanding wall 36 having a diameter slightly larger than the valve actuator 34. The pressurized container retention and valve actuator arrangement is shown more I It .an object of this invention to provide an improved apparatus for heating flowable material. It is an object of this invention to provide an imparticularly in FIG. 6. The pressurized container 32 is held in place within the housing by a circular depending wall 38 that engages the inside of a rolled flange 40 of container 32. Wall 38 is slightly resilient so that the container may be readily accepted and easily removed therefrom by the user. There may also be a bead 41 formed around the bottom of the wall 38 to assist in holding the container. Valve actuator 34 has an internal passageway 43 leading from the outlet stem 45 of the pressurized container to the plastic transfer tube 42 that is connected to tubular projection 46 of the heat exchanger assembly 44. Passageway 43 has an O-ring seal'47 retained in place within the valve actuator 34 by a retainer element 49.
Heat exchanger 44 is maintained in its proper location within the housing 10 by securing it against an internal support partition 48 integrally molded with the plastic housing 10. Positioned above the heat exchanger and pressurized container is an elongated rocker arm 26. The rocker arm is pivoted about a pin 50 transverse to the rocker arm and has both ends retained in the side walls of the opening 25 in the top panel 20. Leaf spring 54 secured to the bottom of the top panel by screws 56 acts to retain the rocker arm in its normally horizontal position. The portion of the rocker arm 26 overlying pressurized container 32has a downwardly directed projection or finger 58 that makes contact with the top 59 of the valve actuator34 when that side of the rocker arm is pushed and causes the valve actuator 34 to move downwardly in the direction of the pressurized container thereby releasing the contents within the container. The contents flow up through a passageway 43 in the interior of the valve actuator 34 and into a transfer tube 42. The right-hand side of the rocker arm 26 overlying heat exchanger 44 functions to actuate the electric heating means within the heat exchanger when depressed downwardly, as will be more fully described later. The plastic housing 10 may be formed in any convenient manner from suitable plastic materials such as by molding and in this particular'case the housing is made in three parts, an upper portion 60, a middle portion 62, and the base 12. Upper portion 60 is secured to the middle portion by screws 64 while the base portion 12 is attached to the middle portion 62 by an interfitting lip 66 and held in place by a peripheral bead 68 formed in the middle portion 62 cooperating with a complimentary groove formed in the base portion 12. This permits retention of the base portion 12 to the middle portion 62 but it may be easily removable by grasping with the hand and removing it with some slight force to gain access to the interior of the dispenser to replace the pressurized container. 3
With reference to F168. 3 and 4, the description of the heat exchanger assembly will now be discussed. The heat exchanger is cyllindrical in shape and is double-walled in that there is an outer shell 70 and an inner shell 72 slightly smaller than the outer shell so that it may fit within the outer shell. The inner shell 72 is cupshaped in that it is open at one end and closed at the other. The closed end comprises the top wall 74 of the heat exchanger assembly. The outer shell 70 is a cylindrical tube, the top of which has a peripheral inwardly turned flange 76. The side wall of the outer shell 70 has a spiral continuous groove or channel 78 throughwhich shave cream from the pressurized container will flow. To this end, the outer shell 70 is provided with an inlet opening 80 for introducing the shave cream into the heat exchanger and an outlet opening 82 for dis- 5 jacent the inner surface of the inner shell 72 is a sheet of insulating material 84. inwardly adjacent the insulating material 84 is an electric heating element board 86 which is provided with saw-tooth notches 88 and which has'wound around it an electrical resistance wire 90. The wire is retained in its proper spaced relationship from one winding to the other by each turn being positioned in the bottom of the notches 88. inwardly adjacent the heater board- 86 is a second-sheet 92of insulating material similar to sheet 84 and then finally there is a C-shaped spring 94 having the ends thereof inwardly turned to form portions 96. Spring 94 maintains the structural layers 92, 86 and 84 against each other and urged against the inner wall of the inner shell 72. By this arrangement the heating element is retained in good heat transfer relationship with spiral channel 78 through which the shave cream passes. it will be understood that the outer shell and the inner shell 72 are made from good heat conductive material, such as aluminum. The assembly of the heat exchanger elements as described above are then retained by a plastic molded cap 98 having an outside diameter larger than the outer shell 70. Cap 98 has an upwardly directed circumferential flange 100, 'within which is seated the outer and inner shells. The junction between the shells 70 and 78 and cap 98 is sealed with a suitable waterproofing compound during assembly. Screw 130 through top wall-74 is also surroundedlby waterproofing material. Cap 98 has an open hollow boss 102,
through which line cord 28 may be inserted for supplying electrical current to the heating element within the heat exchanger. Again, after assembly, this opening is sealed witha waterproof compound. Cap 98 and the shells are additionally held together by two spring clips 104, each on opposite sides of the heat exchanger from the other.
Located within the interior of the heat exchanger assembly is a switch assembly 106 for controlling eneigi zation of the heating element wire 90. The switch assembly 106 includes a support bracket 108 upon which are mounted the various electrical contacts and lead connectors separated by ceramic insulator washers 110. Two lead connectors 111 and 113 for attaching wires, such as by solder joints 115 and 117, are provided. Two contact bladesl12 and 114 are fixed in spaced relationship at one end and separated by an inelement 124. Superimposed above and electrically in-' sulated from the blades 112 and'll4' is a thermallyresponsive bimetallic blade. When the bimetallic blade is subjected to heat the difference in coefficient of expansion of the two laminated metals from which theblade 126 is made causes the blade to bend. When the temperatureis elevated the bimetallic blade 126 bends gradually and with'themetal having the lower coefficient of expansion on the side toward the contact blades 112 and 114, the bimetallic blade 126 bends sufficiently to contact the adjusting nut 122 and exert enough force thereagainst to separate contact buttons 1 16 and 118. By moving the adjusting nut 122 on screw 120 the desired calibration of the switch may be achieved.
The entire switch assembly is held together by a flanged shaft 127 that passes through the center of the insulator washers 1 10, the lead connectors 111 and 113, the contact blades 112 and'114, the bimetallic blade 126 and one end of the support bracket 108. The other end of the support bracket 108 is fastened to the terminal board 103.
Secured by the screw 130 to the top wall 74 of the inner shell 72 is a spring member 128. Spring member dispenser is ready to heat the shave cream passing 128 is resiliently biasedupwardly. and atits free end is-f mounted a permanent magnet 132. It should be noted that between the magnet 132 and the magnetically attractable element 124 is interposed the aluminum top panel 74 of the inner shell 72 that prevents actual touching of the magnet 132 and the element 124. With the cup-shaped innershell 78 inside the outer shell and all the electrical components contained 7 within that inner shell and the one open end of the inner shell sealed to the cap 98, the inside of the heat exchanger is hermetically sealed. By this arrangement the electrical components of the heated shave cream dispenser are protected from moisture and they are isolated from the user to minimize any potential electrical shocks.
For a detailed discussion of the operation of my heated shave cream'dispenser and the switch assembly described above and how these components function to control operation, of the dispenser, reference may be had primarily to FIGS. 3, Sand 7 of the drawings. With the power plug 30 inserted into a properoutlet for providing electric current, and it is desired to heat the shave cream, the right-hand portion of therocker arm 26 located above the heat exchanger is depressed caus" ing member 134 to come into contact with the magnet 132. As the downward movement progresses thespring' bias of member 128 is overcome resulting in the magnet being moved down against the top wall 74 of the inner shell 72. At this time the magnet attracts element 124 of the switch within the interior of the heat exchanger assembly. The magnetic attraction overcomes the spring bias of contact blade 114 causing that blade to move upwardly whereupon contact button 118 makes electrical contact with contact button 116 carried by blade 112. The first means for controlling the dispenser is then completed and theelectrical resistance heating wire 90 is energized to heat the heat exchanger to a predetermined temperature at which the bimetallic blade 126 has been calibrated to automatically break the electrical circuit. Preferably, this temperature is one that responds to break the electrical circuit when the wall temperature of the heat exchanger is in the range of 160-220 F. Below 160F. the temperature of the heated shave cream dispensed'is of minimum effectiveness and above 220 F. the shave cream foam deteriorates or is otherwise detriment ally affected. With reference to FIG. 7, an electrical circuit is completed from plug 30 through lead 136, heating wire 90, contact blade 1 12 carrying button 1 16, to contact blade 114 via button 118, fuse link 138 to power lead 140 and back to plug 30. When the predetermined calibrated temperature is reached the bimetallic blade container 32 is depressed so that finger 58 pushes the valve actuator 34 downwardly permitting the contents of the pressurized container to be'ejected therefrom and pass through the internal passageway 43, the transfer tube 42 and into the heat exchanger via the inlet projection 46. The force of the shave cream being ejected from the pressurized container causes the shave cream to be forced spirally around the heat exchanger within the channel 78 between the inner shell 72 and r the outer shellq70. As the shave cream istraveling in I:
" this manner from'the inlet to the outlet the heated heat bends sufficiently to force contact blade 114 down- 6 the magnetic attraction is overcome. At this time the exchanger transfers heat to the shave cream so that upon its being expelled out through'the opening 118 in the housing the shave cream has been adequately heated. It will be appreciated that as long as the lefthand portion of the rocker switch is pressed down shave cream will continue to be expelled through the system and out the opening'118.
The foregoing is a description of the preferred embodiment of the invention and variations may be made to the apparatus without departing from the spirit of the invention, as claimed in the appended claims.
1. Apparatus for heating flowable material dispensed from a pressurized container comprising: 1
a. a housing adapted to receive the pressurized container, v
b. a hollow heat exchanger assembly having an inlet and outlet and an inside wall and said assembly ineluding;
1.1 passageway means for conducting the discharged contents of the pressurized container from the inlet to the outlet,
'1 2. electric heating means in heat transfer'relatiom' tively to open and closed positions, said switch' means being located inside the heat exchanger.
assembly inwardly of said inside wall,
0. control means for said electric heating means including;
1. an actuator for the switch,
2. first means including said contacts for moving said contacts to a closed position responsive to operation-of the actuator to complete the circuit across a power source,
3. second means to automatically move said contactsto an open position to break the circuit across the power source, said second means being temperature responsive to a predetermined elevated temperature of the heat exchanger assembly, and
d. means from the outlet of said pressurized container to the inlet of the heat exchanger for conducting the dispensed material. I
2 The apparatus of claim 1 wherein the heat ex changer is double-walled and the passageway is between the double walls, said inside wall of the heat ex- 4 switch, first, and second means, all being sealed within said cup, said actuator being disposed externally of said cup, and means operatively coupling the first means and actuator through said closure.
3. Apparatus for heating shave cream dispensed from a pressurized container comprising:
a. a housing adapted to receive the'pressurized container and having an outlet for discharge of shave cream therefrom,
b. a hollow double-walled cylindrical heat exchanger assembly having an inlet and outlet and an inside wall and said assembly including;
l. passageway means between the double walls for conducting the shave cream of the pressurized container from the inlet to the outlet,
2. electric heating means in heat transfer relationship with said passageway,
a) said heating means comprising an electrical resistance wire wound on a heater board separated from said inside wall by insulating material and' urged thereagainst by biasing means,
3. switch means having contacts movable to open and closed position, said switch means b eing located inwardly of the inside wall of the heatexchanger assembly,
c. control means for said electric heating means in- 8 eluding;
1. an actuator for the switch,
2. first means including said contacts for moving said contacts to a closed position responsive to operation of the actuator to complete the circuit across a power source,
3. second means to automatically move said contacts to an open position to break the circuit across the power source, said second means being temperature responsive to a predetermined elevated temperature of the heat exchanger assembly,
d means from the outlet of said pressurized containermeans and actuator through said closure.