US 3756321 A
A sprinkler is provided mounted flush in a ceiling and has an overlapping outer escutcheon plate releasably held in place by resilient upwardly extending members connected to the escutcheon plate by heat responsive elements. The escutcheon plate is normally secured in covering relation to the sprinkler which has a strut containing a heat responsive element with a different selected heat release temperature. Heat sensing fins in contact with the escutcheon plate are movable downwardly below the ceiling line to an exposed position upon release of the plate and thereby increase the sensitivity of the strut heat responsive element. Provisions are made for positioning of the sprinkler in the ceiling to insure proper liquid discharge and to protect the structure against ceiling tiles disrupting the distribution.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1 Gloeckler Sept. 4, 1973 1 FLUSH TYPE SPRINKLER Primary Examiner-Richard A. Schacher 75 In ntor. F ed A. Gloeclrl H t t l 1 ve Valley Pa un mg on Assistant ExaminerMichael Mar Attorney-Zachary T. Wobensmith  Assignee: Star Sprinkler Corporation of Florida, Philadelphia, Pa. 57 ABSTRACT  Filed; A r, 5', 1972 A sprinkler is provided mounted flush in a ceiling and pp No 241 212 has an overlapping outer escutcheon plate releasably Related US. Application Data Continuation-in-part of Ser. No. 150,474,June 7, 1971.
held in place by resilient upwardly extending members connected to the escutcheon plate by heat responsive elements. The escutcheon plate is normally secured in covering relation to the sprinkler which has a strut containing a heat responsive element with a different selected heat release temperature. Heat sensing fins in contact with the escutcheon plate are movable downwardly below the ceiling line to an exposed position upon release of the plate and thereby increase the sensitivity of the strut heat responsive element. Provisions are made for positioning of the sprinkler in the ceiling to insure proper liquid discharge and to protect the structure against ceiling tiles disrupting the distribution.
5 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures FLUSH TYPE SPRINKLER CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates to sprinklers and more particularly to sprinklers that are flush mounted in a ceiling and discharge when predetermined temperatures are attained.
2. Description of the Prior Art Various types of sprinklers flush mounted in a ceiling have been proposed. One such sprinkler is shown in my prior US. Pat. No. 3,633,676, wherein the escutcheon plate is held by temperature sensitive elements that release it at a predetermined temperature. This structure has been found to be highly satisfactory but does not provide for differences in ceiling thickness and valve and pipe mounting variations.
In myprior US. Pat. application Ser. No. 150,474, filed June 7, 1971, a number of improvements over the structure shown in my prior US. Pat. No. 3,633,676 have been set forth. The invention as now to be described incorporates still further improvements looking to locating the sprinkler in the ceiling so as to have the best distribution of water and to prevent ceiling tiles from sagging after installation and disrupting the distribution.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In accordance with the invention, a sprinkler is provided having a sprinkler valve disposed above the level of a ceiling, the valve being retained in closed position by a strut and lever, the strut being releasable at a predetermined temperature. The strut is provided with heat sensing fins which are normally held in a horizon tal position by an escutcheon plate which covers the valve and its release mechanism. The escutcheon plate is held in place by resilient members that are attached to clips on the escutcheon plate, the clips being held to the plate by an eutetic alloy, and the resilient members are attached to a plate on the sprinkler valve. The heat sensing flns help to transmit heat to the heat responsive element for fast strut release upon their downward movement. The valve has a one piece cross head and a deflector plate. The sprinkler is provided with a gage and shield which aids in proper positioning in the ceiling and protects the structure from sagging ceiling tiles.
It is the principal object of the invention to provide a sprinkler flush mounted at the ceiling and concealed by an escutcheon plate and which has improved operating characteristics.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a sprinkler of the character aforesaid in which provisions are made for properly positioning the sprinkler in the ceiling.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a sprinkler of the character aforesaid which includes structure to prevent disruption by sagging ceiling tiles.
Other objects and advantageous features of the invention will be apparent from the description and claims.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The nature and characteristic features of the invention will be more readily understood from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings forming part thereof, in which:
FIG. 1 is a vertical sectional view of a sprinkler in accordance with the invention ready for use when required;
FIG. 2 is a horizontal sectional view taken approximately on the line 22 of FIG. 1; and
FIG. 3 is a view in perspective of the gage and shield removed from the sprinkler.
It should, of course, be understood that the description and drawings herein are illustrative merely and 1 that various modifications and changes can be made in the structure disclosed without departing from the spirit of the invention.
Like numerals refer to like parts throughout the several views.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now more particularly to the drawings, a portion of a ceiling 10 is illustrated, with an opening 11 therein at which the sprinkler G to be described is mounted, and with a lower exposed ceiling face 12.
The sprinkler G includes a body 15 in threaded engagement at its upper end 16 in a water supply fitting 17, which is connected to a supply of water under pressure.
The body 15 has an internal bore 19 with a seat 20 and rim 21 spaced inwardly from the lower end thereof.
The body 15 has a transverse flange 22 with a cylin drical frame 23 in threaded engagement therewith and held against unloosening by one or more pins 24 in engagement therewith.
A cover 25 is provided preferably held in place by a press fit and carried on the upper end of the body 15.
The flange 22 has a pair of spaced openings 30 therein for the reception of a pair of guide rods 31 which have stop collars 32 at their upper ends to limit the downward movement thereof. The rods 31 are carried at their lower ends in a combined cross head and liquid deflector plate 33. A compression cone 34 is provided in engagement with the cross head 33, and includes a lower end 35.
The cone 34 has a spherical upper end 36 which is in bearing engagement with a valve plug 37 and is of a shape selected to obtain a profile that will assist in retaining the valve plug 37 in the body 15.
The valve plug 37 has a lower rim 38 which engages the rim 21 and a sealing packing 39, such as an O-ring, which engages the seat 20 of the body 15 and prevents fluid leakage.
The lower end 35 of the compression cone 34 has control lever 42 in engagement therewith.
The lever 42 is supported at one end of a pin 43 carried in the frame 23 and has its opposite end in engagement with a heat releasable strut 45.
The strut 45 has a rod portion 46 with a locating collar 47. One end of the rod portion 46 is supported on an inwardly extending rim 48 on the frame 23.
The strut 45 at the other end thereof has a cup portion 49 within which an insert 50 is provided of fusible eutectic alloy material, and melting at a predetermined temperature. In a particular embodiment this temperaturc can be 135 degrees F. The insert 50 normally rctains a ball 51 in its outward position and bearing on the rim 48, but upon melting permits the ball 51 to move inwardly in the cup portion 49 from its support position to a release position.
The outer surface of the cup portion 49 has secured thereto metallic ribbon-like heat sensing fins 52, which are normally held in substantially horizontal position by an escutcheon plate 53 but the free ends of which can swing downwardly when released. The escutcheon plate 53 is of dish shape with a flat central portion 54 and an outer rim 55.
The escutcheon plate 53 covers the opening 11 in the ceiling l and is held firmly against the ceiling by clips 56 which are engaged by springs 57 which at their upper ends are engaged with a spring plate 58 which has a central opening 59 in engagement with the upper end portion of the body 15.
The clips 56 are secured to the escutcheon plate 53 by a layer of eutectic alloy 60 which, in the particular embodiment illustrated, melts at 117 F.
A gage 65 is provided which includes an upper plate portion 66 with an upstanding collar 67 in press fit engagement on the cover 25. The plate portion 66 has downwardly and outwardly extending legs 68 each of which has an outwardly extending foot 69. The feet 69 are located so as to have their upper faces flush with and engaging the lower exposed ceiling face 12.
The gage 65 prevents the sprinkler from being installed too far above the ceiling face which would disrupt the distribution and thus positions the sprinkler for effective discharge as referred to below. The gage 65 also protects the sprinkler from disruption of the distribution which might occur upon sagging of ceiling tiles after installation.
The mode of operation will now be pointed out.
The sprinkler G as shown in FIG. 1 is ready and in condition for operation when required.
If the ambient temperature at the escutcheon plate 53 rises to the set temperature, that is to an extent to melt the eutectic alloy 60, the escutcheon plate 53 will be released from the clips 56 and fall. The free ends of the heat sensing fins 50 will then fall and become effective for heat transfer to the strut 45.
If and when the temperature effective on the insert 50 reaches the set value, i.e., the temperature at which the insert 50 melts, the pressure effective from above on the strut 45 due to the water pressure in bore 19 on plug 37 and cone 34 and therefrom onto the ball 51, causes the ball 51 to move inwardly so that the strut 45 is also urged downwardly by force imparted thereto through the actuator lever 42 by cone lower end 35.
The strut 45 and lever 42 drop and the valve plug 37 is moved outwardly and downwardly by the water pressure thereon. The cross and deflector plate 33 and guide rods 31 drop to the extent permitted by the stop collars 32, and as determined by the locating action of the gage 65.
Water discharging through the bore 19 strikes the deflector plate 33 by which it is diverted outwardly in a well known manner.
lt will thus be seen that structure has been provided for carrying out the objects of the invention.
1. A sprinkler for mounting in a ceiling comprising a body with a frame normally disposed above the lower face of the ceiling,
said body having a fluid supply connection and a discharge bore,
a valve plug normally closing said bore,
a cross head member vertically slidably mounted with respect to said body and including a deflector plate for diverting water discharged from said discharge bore,
means engaged with said member for retaining said valve plug in closed position including transversely collapsible first temperature sensitive means carried by said frame,
cover means disposed on the lower face of the ceiling in covering relation to said frame,
temperature sensitive releasable means for holding said cover means in position and including members normally urging said cover in an upward direction, and
a member for positioning said sprinkler with respect to said lower face of said ceiling.
2. A sprinkler as defined in claim 1 in which said last mentioned member is carried at a fixed position with respect to said body.
3. A sprinkler as defined in claim 1 in which said last mentioned member comprises a plate portion with downwardly extending portions and outwardly extending feet for location in a predetermined relation to the lower face of the ceiling.
4. A sprinkler as defined in claim 3 in which said feet are engageable with the lower face of the ceiling.
5. A sprinkler as defined in claim 3 in which said cover means is in concealing relation to said feet.