US 3773258 A
An ornamental fountain comprises a housing which defines therein upper and lower chambers separated by a septum. A vertical duct member is connected to the housing to have its lower end in communication with the upper chamber. An open ended tube is disposed within the duct member and extends through the upper chamber and the septem to have its lower end communicating with the lower chamber. The upper end of the tube is disposed above the upper end of the duct member. Water inlet means are provided to the lower chamber. Also, water inlet means are provided to the upper chamber and are arranged with relation to the chamber to produce a spiral flow of water in the upper chamber and along the duct member around the tube to and through the upper end of the duct member.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [191 Hruby, Jr.
[451 Nov. 20, 1973 CONTROLLABLE MULTITIER FOUNTAIN [7 5] Inventor: John 0. Hruby, Jr., Burbank, Calif.
 Assignee: Rain Jet Corp., Burbank, Calif.
 Filed: Dec. 11, 1972  Appl. No.: 313,990
Primary Examiner-M. Henson Wood, Jr. Assistant Examiner-John J. Love Attorney-Robert L. Parker et al.
[ 5 7 ABSTRACT An ornamental fountain comprises a housing which defines therein upper and lower chambers separated by a septum. A vertical duct member is connected to the housing to have its lower end in communication with the upper chamber. An open ended tube is disposed within the duct member and extends through the upper chamber and the septem to have its lower end communicating with the lower chamber. The upper end of the tube is disposed above the upper end of the duct member. Water inlet means are provided to the lower chamber. Also, water inlet means are provided to the upper chamber and are arranged with relation to the chamber to produce a spiral flow of water in the upper chamber and along the duct member around the tube to and through the upper end of the duct member.
. 0 Claims, 2,2 win f u ss PATENTED NOV 20 I873 FEE CONTROLLABLE MULTITIER FOUNTAIN BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates to liquid discharge devices, and more particularly, to multitier fountain assemblies.
2. Review of the Prior Art The water discharge nozzles shown in my prior U.S. Pats. Nos. 2,5 89,942 and 2,639,191, for example, were originally designed as lawn sprinkler nozzles. These structures, however, have been adapted as shown in my prior U.S. Pats. Nos. 3,081,036 and 3,301,490, for example, to serve as nozzles in ornamental water fountains; as so modified, the nozzles are useful to produce the distinctive fountain patterns shown in my U.S. Design Pats. Nos. 208,754 and 208,755, for example. These fountain nozzles are characterized by a tubular body through which water flows to an open discharge end of the body. An elongated stem is disposed in the body and extends from the discharge end of the body. The stem is loosely joumalled in the body so that it is freely pivotable about a fulcrum point lying within the length of the body. The stem is so mounted that it is secured from movement out of the open end of the body. At least one annular bearing, through which the stern extends, is carried by the body at a location spaced from the fulcrum point and has an inner diameter greater than the diameter of the journal at the fulcrum point. When the device is operated by supplying water to it, the water is caused to flow spirally along and around the stern. This liquid flow pattern causes the stem to gyrate, or pivot and revolve, about the fulcrum point. The portion of the stem at the open end of the body thus rolls rapidly around the outlet opening to break into discrete drops the stream of water which passes between the stem and the body. The stem functions as a gyrating pendulum as these devices are operated.
Except where the teachings of my prior U.S. Pat. No. 3,369,758 are utilized, it has not heretofore been possible to provide these rotary pendulum fountain nozzles in large sizes, such as for use in fountains intended to be viewed from a distance.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention provides an improved ornamental fountain assembly which is useful to produce the types of discharge patterns such as are shown in the previously mentioned design patents, but in which the discharge pattern is substantially larger and more massive than has heretofore been realized. These benefits are provided in a structure which is simple, effective and reliable. Also, due to the structure of the present fountains, the relative proportions of various components of the discharge pattern may be adjusted or varied either as a part of a varying fountain program, or to produce the best effect for prevailing conditions at the time.
Generally speaking, a fountain assembly according to this invention includes a housing which defines therein upper and lower chambers. The chambers areseparated by a septum. A vertical duct member is fixedly connected to the housing to have its lower end in communication with the upper chamber. An open-ended tube is disposed within the duct member and extends through the upper chamber and the septum to have its lower end in communication with the lower chamber. The upper end of the tube is disposed above the upper end of the duct member. Water inlet means are provided to the lower chamber. Also, water inlet means are provided to the upper chamber and are arranged with relation to the upper chamber to produce a spiral flow of water in the upper chamber, and then spirally therefrom along the duct member around the tube to and through the upper end of the duct member.
In one embodiment of thepresent fountain, the tube is rotatably joumalled in the septum so that, during use of the fountain, the tube performs as the stem mentioned above with reference to U.S. Pats. Nos. 2,589,942 and 2,639,191, for example.
In another embodiment, the stem is fixed in the septum to be disposed coaxially of the duct member. In this case, the discharge pattern produced by operation of the fountain is similar to the discharge pattern produced by operation of the structure shown in my prior U.S. Pat. No. 3,645,449; in this discharge pattern a central plume of water rises above the upper extent of an inverted coaxial cone of water. In this second embodiment, the discharge pattern produced by the fountain can be comprised only of the plume, or only of the inverted cone, or both, in any desired proportion relative to each other.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The above-mentioned and other features of this invention are more fully set forth in the following detailed description of presently preferred embodiments of the invention, which description is presented with reference to the accompanying drawings, wherein:
FIG. 1 is an elevation view of the fountain discharge pattern produced by operation of a first embodiment of the fountain;
FIG. 2 is a cross-section elevation view of the first embodiment of the fountain;
FIG. 3 is a view taken along lines 3-3 in FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a view taken along line 4-4 in FIG. 2;
FIG. 5 is a cross-section elevation view of a second embodiment of the present fountain;
FIG. 6 is a schematic representation of the water supply valving and ducting for the nozzle shown in FIG. 5;
FIG. 7 is an elevation view of the discharge pattern produced by the fountain in FIG. 5 for one state of the valving;
FIG. 8 is an elevation view of another discharge pattern produced by the fountain shown in FIG. 5 for a second state of the valving; and
FIG. 9 is an elevation view of another discharge pattern produced by the fountain shown in FIG. 5 for a third state of the valving.
DESCRIPTION OF THE ILLUSTRATED EMBODIMENTS Referring initially to FIG. 2, a multitier fountain 10 includes a right circularly cylindrical base housing 11 having an axis of symmetry 12. The housing is composed of a body 13, a top closure plate 14, and a bottom closure plate 15. A lower chamber 16 of right circularly cylindrical configuration is formed in the body concentric to axis 12 to open through the bottom surface of the body and to be closed by bottom closure plate 15. An upper right circular cylindrical chamber 17 is formed in the upper extent of the body concentric to axis 12 and is closed by top closure plate 14. The upper and lower chambers are separated by a horizontal partition or septum 18 defined by the body. 'The housing body and closure plates are secured together by a plurality of through-bolts 19 and cooperating nuts 20, as shown. Water is supplied to lower chamber 16 through inlet openings defined by a pair of coaxially aligned inlet nipples 21 which extend through the side walls of the chamber to receive suitable water supply conduits 22. Nipples 21 open to lower chamber 16 at diametrically opposed locations of the chamber. The total water flow area of the two nipples is greater than the water flow area of an elongate hollow tube 24 which has its lower end disposed in communication with the lower chamber. A vertically disposed tubular duct member 25 is fixedly carried by housing upper closure plate 14 in coaxial alignment with chambers 16 and 17. The duct member has an open lower end which communicates with upper chamber 17. The upper end 26 of the duct member is also open and is disposed sufficiently far above top closure plate 14 that it lies above thesurface 27 of a fountain pool 28 when fountain is supported upon a floor surface 29 of the pool.
Tube 24 is disposed through an oversized hole 31 formed through septum l8 concentric to axis 12. An annular bearing member 31 is secured to the top surface of lower chamber 16 concentric to hole 31 and cooperates with a bearing collar 33 carried by the tube adjacent its open lower end 35. The upper surface 36 of the bearing collar is spherically curved and has a large radius of curvature for cooperation with the flat lower surface of bearing member 32. A keeper collar 37 is secured to tube 34 above septum 18 and is of larger diameter than hole 31. The spacing between collars 33 and 37 is sufficient that when bearing collar 33 is engaged with bearing member 32, as shown in FIG. 2, keeper collar 37 is disposed sufficiently above the upper end of hole 31 that it does not make contact with the bottom surface of upper chamber 17 during rotation and gyration of tube 24, as described below. On the other hand, the spacing between collars 33 and 37 is sufficient that when fountain 10 is not in use, collar 37 cooperates with the floor of chamber 17 to prevent the lower end of tube 24 from moving into contact with the bottom of lower chamber 16.
Tube 24 is sufficiently long that its upper end 38 is disposed above upper end 26 of duct member 25.
The inner diameter of duct member 25 is substantially greater than the outer diameter of tube 24. An annular bearing sleeve 39 is carried by the inner walls of duct member 25 at its upper end. The inner diameter of the bearing sleeve is greater than the diameter of hole 31.
As shown best in FIG. 3, water is supplied to upper chamber 17 through a pair of inlet nipples 40 which extend through the chamber side walls to have their outer ends disposed outside base housing 11 for cooperation with the adjacent ends of a pair of suitable water supply conduits 41. Nipples 40 open to upper chamber 17 at diametrically opposed locations of the chamber. Also, the nipples are aligned parallel to each other, but are not coaxially aligned. The nipples are disposed so that they open substantially tangentially to the circularly cylindrical configuration of upper chamber 17. Accordingly, as water flows into upper chamber 17 through nipples 40, the water flows spirally around the upper chamber, and then spirally upwardly around tube 24 to be discharged through bearing sleeve 39 and the open upper end of duct member 25. The centrifugal forces associated with the spiral flow of the water emerging from the upper end of the duct member causes such water to be thrown upwardly and outwardly in all directions from the nozzle axis to define a relatively large diameter, shallow inverted cone lower tier 44 of the overall fountain discharge pattern 45, as shown in FIG. 1.
A nozzle assembly 47 is mounted to the upper end of tube 24 above the upper end of duct member 25. The nozzle assembly includes a body 48 which defines therein a chamber 49 to which the interior of tube 24 communicates. The lower exterior surface 50 of the body is configured to serve as a deflector for water emerging from the upper end of duct member 25. A central, relatively small diameter nozzle tube 51 is carried by the body of the nozzle assembly coaxially of tube 24. Three additional nozzle tubes 52 are also carried by the upper portion of the nozzle assembly body to communicate with chamber 49. Nozzle tubes 52 are all disposed at a common angle relative to the axis of tube 24, and are inclined upwardly and outwardly relative to the axis of tube 24. As shown best in FIG. 4, nozzle tubes 52 are disposed at uniformly spaced locations about the circumference of central nozzle tube 51.
During the operation of fountain 10, water is supplied to lower chamber 16 through inlet nipples 21, and through inlet nipples 40 to chamber 17. As noted above, the flow of water in chamber 17 and through duct members 25 is spiral flow upwardly along and around the exterior of tube 24. The spiral flow of water along and around tube 24 causes tube 24 to be gyrated about a fulcrum point associated with the lower end of the tube. Accordingly, tube 24 adjacent its upper end rolls around the inner diameter of bearing sleeve 39. The cooperation between the exterior surfaces of tube 24 and the inner surfaces of bearing sleeve 39 produces rotation of tube 24 about its axis. Accordingly, tube 24 both rotates about its axis and gyrates relative to the axis of symmetry of the fountain. The rotary and gyra tory motion of the tube is accommodated by the cooperation of bearing collar 33 with annular bearing member 32 in lower chamber 16. The annular bearing collar is urged into contact with the annular bearing member during operation of the fountain by virtue of the pressure of water supplied to lower chamber 16.
The water which enters lower chamber 16 through inlet nipples 21 is discharged from fountain 10 via nozzle tubes 51 and 52 of nozzle assembly 47. The water which is discharged through nozzle tube 51, because of the rotary and gyratory action of the supporting tube, is caused to break up into a plurality of discrete unaerated water droplets which form a central, inverted cone upper tier 55 in fountain pattern 45 symmetrically about fountain axis 12. Also, the water which is discharged through nozzle tubes 52 is broken up into a plurality of discrete unaerated water droplets by virtue of the gryatory and rotary movement of tube 24. The water discharged from each inclined nozzle tube 52 defines a corresponding one of three inclined inverted cones of water 56, which cones collectively define the intermediate tier 57 of the three-tiered discharge pattern 45, as shown in FIG. 1. Fountain discharge pattern 45 is similar to the fountain pattern shown in my prior U.S. Design Pat. No. 208,754.
It is desired that the aggregate water flow area of nozzle tubes 51 and 52 not exceed the water flow area of tube 24.
Workers skilled in the art to which this invention pertains will appreciate that nozzle assembly 47 may be deleted from the structure of fountain 10, if desired. In such a case, water emerging from the rotating and gyrating tube 24 defines a single inverted cone coaxially aligned with fountain axis 12, and composed of discrete droplets of unaerated water. Alternatively, by substitution of an appropriately structured nozzle assembly for nozzle assembly 47, a fountain pattern similar to that shown in my prior U.S. Design Pat. No. 208,755 may be produced.
Best aesthetic results are produced by fountain when the fountain is disposed on pool floor surface 29 so that fountain axis 12 corresponds to a plumb line. Appropriate leveling of the fountain relative to the pool floor surface is facilitated by the inclusion in fountain 10 of three positioning assemblies 60. As shown best in FIG. 3, the positioning assemblies are disposed at uniformly spaced locations about the circumference of nozzle 11. Each positioning assembly is comprised of a lug 61 which extends radially outwardly from bottom closure plate 15. An externally threaded stud 62 is passed through an oversize hole 63 in the lug and is engaged adjacent the top and bottom surfaces of the lug in corresponding jam nuts 64. A circular foot 65 is carried by the lower end of stud 62.
By appropriate valving of the water flow paths provided to chambers 16 and 17 through conduits 22 and 41, respectively, the water flow rates to these chambers may be regulated as desired. In this manner, the rate of rotation and gyration of the tube 24 may be adjusted for best aesthetic effects under particular conditions. Also, the size of lower tier 44 relative to the other tiers of the fountain pattern may be adjusted by regulating the relative volumes of water supplied to chambers 17 and 16, respectively. For example, on a windy day it may be desirable to reduce the volume of water supplied to chamber 16 and to increase the volume of water supplied to chamber 16 and to increase the volume of water supplied to chamber 17, as compared to the volume of water supplied to these chambers during use of fountain 10 on calm days.
In a second embodiment of the invention, a fountain 70 (see FIG. 5) includes a base housing 71 which is similar to base housing 11 of fountain 10. Accordingly, housing 71 is comprised of a body 72 and top and bottom closure plate 73 and 74 which cooperate with the body to close upper and lower chambers 75 and 76 defined on opposite sides of a septum portion 77 of the body. The closure plates are secured to the body by through-bolts and nuts (not shown) similar to those described with reference to FIG. 2. Housing 71 and the chambers defined therein are symmetrical about an axis of symmetry 78 for the fountain.
An enlarged diameter duct member 79 is fixedly connected at its open lower end to top closure plate 73 to be in water flow communication with upper chamber 75; and the duct member is concentric to axis 78. An elongate, hollow, open-ended tube 80 is disposed coaxially of the fountain and has its upper end 81 disposed above the upper end of duct member 79. The lower terminal portion of tube 80 is intimately received in a bore 82 formed through septum portion 77 so that the lower end 83 of the tube is in water flow communication with lower chamber 76. The cooperation of the lower terminal portion of the tube within bore 82 is sufficiently snug that no water flow path exists through bore 82 or around the exterior of the tube, and that the tube is held fixed relative to body 72.
An inlet connection nipple 84 is disposed through the side walls of lower chamber 76 and has its outer end disposed exteriorly of the housing for cooperation with a suitable water flow conduit 85. Preferably the elongate extent of connection nipple 84 is aligned radially of axis 78. Water is supplied to upper chamber via a connection nipple 86 to the outer end of which is connected a suitable water supply conduit 87. Connection nipple 86 is disposed through the side walls of upper chamber 75 so that it communicates substantially tangentially with the circular configuration of the upper chamber. Accordingly, water introduced into the upper chamber through connection nipple 86 from conduit 87 flows spirally within chamber 75 and spirally upwardly along and around tube through duct member 79.
The structure of fountain 70 illustrates a feature which may be provided, if desired, in the structure of fountain 10, namely, that only one of water inlet opening may be provided to each of the two chambers in a fountain according to this invention. Whether or not one or two water inlet openings are provided to either or both chambers is dependent, in part, upon the volume of water to be discharged by the fountain during use.
Preferably fountain 10 is connected to a source of pressurized water via a three-way valve 88 interposed between a source water conduit 89 and conduits and 87 for the lower and upper chambers of the fountain, respectively. Valve 88 may be operated to provide communication from source conduit 89 only to conduit 85, or only to conduit 87, or to both conduits 85 and 87. Accordingly, fountain 70 may be operated to produce any one of the three fountain patterns 90, 91 and 92 illustrated in FIGS. 7, 8 and 9, respectively.
Fountain pattern is composed of a single inverted cone 93 of water which rises to moderate height above the top of duct member 79 to fall back to the surface 94 of a fountain pool in which fountain 70 is installed. The inverted water cone 93 is produced as a result of the centrifugal energy present in water discharged through the upper end of duct member 79 in response to the supply of water to upper chamber 75 through conduit 87. During those periods when fountain 70 is operated to produce discharge pattern 90, no water is supplied to lower chamber 76 through conduit 85.
Discharge pattern 91 consists of a vertical plume of water 95 which rises to substantial height above fountain 70 before the water falls back to pool surface 94. Plume 95 is formed by the discharge of water through tube 80, and therefore is essentially coaxial with fountain 70. During those periods when the fountain is operated to produce discharge pattern 91, no water is introduced into upper chamber 75 through conduit 87.
Discharge pattern 92 is composed of the combination of discharge patterns 90 and 91, i.e., the combination of inverted water cone 93 and coaxial higher plume 95, as shown best in FIG. 9. To produce fountain pattern 92, valve 88 is operated to provide water flow communication from source conduit 89 to both of conduits 85 and 87.
It should be appreciated that separate flow control valves (not shown) may be disposed in each of conduits 85 and 87 in addition to or in place of flow control valve 88, and may be operated to produce fountain patterns 90, 91 and 92. Where each of conduits 85 and 87 includes a flow control valve in combination with three-way control valve 88, the relative proportions of cone 93 and plume 95 may be adjusted for best aesthetic effects relative to each other, or individually, in the context of the particular environment of a given fountain at a given time.
It should be understood that, if desired, one or more of water inlet openings may be provided to lower chamber 76, either at regularly spaced locations around the circumference of the chamber or through the bottom plate of the chamber at locations symmetrically disposed about axis 78. Also, it is within the scope of this invention that two or more tangential water inlet openings may be provided to upper chamber 75.
Workers skilled in the art to which this invention pertains will readily understand that modifications and alterations may be made in the structures of the two embodiments of this invention which are described above while still using the teachings provided by this invention. Such workers will also understand that it is not essential to the practice of this invention that a nozzle assembly similar to nozzle assembly 47 be mounted to the upper end of rotating and gyrating tube 24, and that if a nozzle assembly is used, it can be a nozzle assembly of the type shown in any of the previously issued patents pertaining to a rotary pendulum fountains and owned by the assignee of this invention. In this respect, many of the teachings of the previously issued, commonly owned patents pertaining to rotary pendulum lawn sprinklers and the like may be used to advantage in the embodiment shown in FIG. 2. It will also be understood that, if desired, artificial illumination assemblies may be mounted to the base housings of the fountains of this invention. Accordingly, in view of the foregoing considerations, it will be apparent that the present invention is not limited specifically to the structural arrangements described above, and that the foregoing description is not be regarded as limiting the scope of this invention.
What is claimed is:
1. An ornamental fountain comprising a housing defining therein upper and lower chambers having a septum therebetween, a vertical duct member connected to the housing with its lower end communicating with the upper chamber, an open ended tube disposed within the duct member and extending through the upper chamber and the septum to have its lower end communicating with the lower chamber, the upper end of the tube being disposed above the upper end of the duct member, water inlet means to the lower chamber, and water inlet means to the upper chamber arranged in relation to the chamber to produce a spiral flow of water in the upper chamber and along the duct member around the tube to and through the upper end of the duct member. v
2. A fountain according to claim 1 wherein the chambers and the duct member are coaxially aligned along a vertical axis of the fountain.
3. A fountain according to claim 2 wherein the outer diameter of the tube is substantially less than the inner diameter of the duct member.
4. A fountain according to claim 3 wherein the septum defines a hole therethrough concentric to the axis which is greater in diameter than the tube and through which the tube passes to communication with the lower chamber, and bearing means cooperating between the housing and a lower portion of the tube for accomodating rotation of the tube about its own axis andgyration of the tuberelative to the fountain axis.
5. A fountain according to claim 4 wherein the bearing means comprises a bearing member carried by the tube in the lower chamber.
6. A fountain according to claim 4 including annular bearing means carried by the duct member adjacent its upper end for cooperation with the tube, the annular bearing means having an inner diameter greater than the hole in the septum.
7. A fountain according to claim 4 including a nozzle assembly carried by the upper end of the tube for receiving water from the tube and for discharging received water from the fountain.
8. A fountain according to claim 3 wherein the tube is fixedly supported in the septum to be coaxially aligned with the fountain axis.
9. A fountain according to claim 1 including separate water supply conduit means connected from the inlet means for the upper and lower chambers, and valve means coupled to the conduit means for controlling the rate of water flow through the upper chamber inlet means relative to the rate of water flow through the lower chamber inlet means.
10. A fountain according to claim 9 wherein the valve means is operable to supply water either only to the upper chamber, or only to the lower chamber, or
to both the upper and lower chambers.