US 3776313 A
An automatic fire extinguisher having a heat-sensitive assembly mounted on a conventional fire extinguisher container. Heat sensors are operably connected to a housing which contains a bellows and valve arrangement. Within the sensors, housing and surrounding the bellows is a fluid which expands in response to heat which causes the bellows to collapse and move a valve to an open position permitting fire extinguisher material to excape through a nozzle provided in the container. A squeeze grip manual actuator is provided for manipulating the valve at any time.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 11 1 DePalma 1451 Dec. 4, 1973 TEMPERATURE RESPONSIVE AUTOMATIC FIRE EXTINGUISHER  Inventor: Joseph S. DePalma, 109 Carlson CL,
Closter, NJ. 07624  Filed: Feb. 4, 1972  Appl. No.: 223,507
52 us. 01 169/19, 169/26, 9/30 151 A621: 13/00  Field 61 Search 169 19, 20, 26, 3o, 1 169/2 R  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,414,127 1/1947 Shaw 169/19UX 2,824,614 2/1958 Bowman 1,630,251 5/1927 Bechard 3,389,753 6/1968 Howard 144,493 1 l/ 1873 Ashcroft 1,004,794 10/ 1911 Keeton 3,530,941 9/1970 Arne '& Hansen et 169/30 X FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 47,538 9/1962 Poland 169/26 Primary ExaminerRobert S. Ward, Jr. Attorneyl-larvey B. Jacobson 57 ABSTRACT An automatic fire extinguisher having a heat-sensitive assembly mounted on a conventional fire extinguisher container. Heat sensors are operably connected to a housing which contains a bellows and valve arrangemerit. Within-the sensors, housing and surrounding the bellows is a fluid which expands in response to heat which causes the bellows to collapse and move a valve to an open position permitting fire extinguisher material to excape through a nozzle provided in the con tainer. A squeeze grip manual actuator is provided for manipulating the valve at any time.
13 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures PAIENIEDBEB M975 3.776313 SHEET 1 UF 2 y, 25 am 36 .MHKMgIngMfiI- l r d 1 TEMPERATURE RESPONSIVE AUTOMATIC FIRE EXTINGUISHER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION It is axiomatic that when a fire Occurs speed in putting out the blaze is the prime concern. It would therefore be most beneficial if a fire extinguisher could be made readily available at the incipiency of the blaze It is common in most installations such as garages, homes, schools, hospitals, etc., to have a portable fire extinguisher mounted on the walls at various locations thereof. When a fire occurs itis necessary to go to the fire station and bring the extinguisher to the location of the blaze. Consequently, installations relying on this method of fire prevention and extinguishment are at a distinct disadvantage since considerable damage, if not total destructiomcould occur long before a fire extinguisher could be carried to the scene of the blaze. In order to alleviate this delay in extinguishing fires many installations have installed overhead water sprinkler systems which respond to heat generated by a blaze to. spray the area with water. This system' is useful as far as it goes but it subjects the user not only to the likelihood of considerable water damage but also to considerable expense for installation of the water sprinkler system. Also such a system is not effectual in certain kinds of fire, for example, burning oil; Moreover, extinguishing fires by means of water is not the most efficient method of quenching fires. This is true since it is known that certain chemicals in the .form of liquids, gases or foams are far more efficient extinguishing materials.
Thus, it is seen that the most efficient fire extinguishing systemwould be one which comes into play as soon as possible after the start of the fire, or senses an abnormal increase in temperature. In this regard, there have been proposed in the past systems which attempted to afford fast fire detection and extinguishment. In the main, these systems have not been provedsuccessful because they required considerable time before reacting to the presence of a blaze or because the fire detector means could not be calibrated with any degree of reliability to ensure operation within predetermined limits. Some of these past systems have relied upon fusible links, plugs or similar devices to detect heat. In use these devices were destroyed in the detection of heat and thereby release the extinguishing materials. It is apparent that such systems are unduly complex as to arrangement of parts required as well as to reliability of their performance.
OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION It is yet another object of this invention to provide an automatic fire extinguisher which senses the presence of an abnormal temperature condition by expansion of a fluid.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION The present invention'provides an automatic fire extinguisher wherein a container holding a quantity of fire extinguisher material under pressure is permitted to eject the material by thermally responsive means which reacts to the expansion of a fluid. Heat sensors are operably connected to a housing containing a bellows and valve arrangement. Within the housing and surrounding the bellows is a heat-sensitive fluid which expands as a result of heat conducted to it by the heat sensors. The expansion of the fluid causes the bellows and valve to move from a first position to a second position. The valve becomes unseated thereby permitting the fire extinguisher material to escape through a port provided in the container. Manual'means are also provided to actuate the bellows and valve for releasing the fire extinguishing material. When a plurality of automatic fire extinguishers of the type taught by the invention are strategically placed about an installation a system of fire extinguishing is provided which is not only low in cost but simple in construction and operation.
These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part thereof,
wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout,
and in which:
FIG. 1 is an elevational view of the invention;
FIG. 2 is a partial sectional view, on an enlarged scale; showing the thermally responsive means mounted on the container;
FIG. 3 is a fragmental sectional view similar to the upper portion of FIG. 2 but illustrating the manual control removed; v
FIG. 4 is a detailed sectional view of the pressure gauge valve assembly;
FIG. 5 is an end view of the discharge nozzle; and
FIG. 6 is a face view of the pressure gauge.
Referring now to FIG. l, reference nu'meral 10 designates the automatic fire extinguisher which incorporates the principles of the present invention mounted on a container or tank 12 which holds a quantity of fire extinguisher material. The extinguisher material may be of conventional kind, such as a bicarbonate solution which is to mix with an acid. Alternatively, the extinguisher material may be a foam, a gas or other fire quenching material. The extinguisher material employed herein will be maintained under pressure in con tainer 12 in the manner well known by those skilled in the art.
The upper end of the container 12 is provided with a substantially cylindrical neck 14 that is internally threaded as at 16 for detachably mounting an externally threaded valve body 18 therein with the valve body 18 having a flange surface 20 in abutting engagement with the upper end of the neck 14 thus forming a closure cap for the container 12 and releasably mounting the automatic control device to the container.
The valve body 18 is generally cylindrical in construction with the central portion thereof being hollow as at 22 with the hollow area being defined by a lower wall 24 having a downwardly opening substantially conical valve seat 26 formed therein. Disposedbelow the wall 24, the valve body 18 is provided with a hollow area 28 that communicates with the upper externally threaded end of a vertically elongated tube 30 which extends downwardly to apoint adjacent the bottom of the tank or container 12. The tube 30 is provided with an internal annular flange 32 which forms a seat for engaging the bottom end of a coil type valve spring 34.
Disposed in the hollow area 28 and engagable with the valve seat 26 is avalve member 36 which has a con ical surface corresponding with and engaging with the surface of the valve seat. The lower end of the valve member 36 is provided with a downward projection 38 having a transverse slot 40 therein for receiving a screwdriver or similar instrument for purpose described hereinafter. Also, the projection 38 and the adjacent bottom surface of the valve member 36 forms a seat for receiving the upper end of the valve spring 34 with the projection 38 extending dowwardly into the interior of the spring 34 to retain the spring and valve member in alignment. Thus, the spring 34 spring biases the valve member 36 into seated engagement with the valve seat 26 with the threaded connection 42 between the .upper end of the tube 30 and the valve body 18 providing an adjustment for the tension on the spring 34.
The upper end of the valve member 36 is provided with an elongated valve stem 44 having an externally threaded upper end 46. The valve stem 44 is slidably guided by a transverse wall 48 which defines the upper limit of the hollow area 22 with the plate 48 including a cylindrical boss 50 which is externally threaded at 52 and which includes internal seal structures 54, such as a pair of O-n'ngs, for sealing and slidable engagement with the valve stem 44 thereby forming a seal for the valve stem but enabling it to reciprocate in relation to the valve body 18.
Communicated with the hollow area 22 is a discharge nozzle assembly generally designated by the numeral 56 for discharging fire extinguishing material when the valve member 36 is opened. Also provided in the valve body 18 is a pressure gauge and refill valve assembly generally designated by the numeral 58 which is in communication with the interior of the container 12 at all times thus enabling the pressure conditions within the container 12 to be monitored thereby enabling the container 12 to be retained in properly filled condition at all times.
Attached to the upper end of the valve body and engaged with the valve stem is a temperature responsive,
mechanism generally designated by the numeral 60 for moving the valve stem 44 downwardly thus opening the valve member 36 when the ambient temperature reaches a predetermined preset value.
The temperature responsive mechanism 60 includes a cylindrical housing 62 having a plurality of radially extending tubular sensors 64 rigid or integral therewith with the interior of the sensors 64 being communicated with the interior of the housing 62 through apertures 66. Also, the sensors 64 serve as handles for the unit and it is pointed out that the sensors may be any shape or configuration and may be located remotely if desired. For example, the sensors may be in the form of a sensing tube located remotely and communicated with the housing 62 by a suitable tube or other conduit. The lower end of the housing 62 is joined with and sealed to the upper end of the valve body 18 at 68 and the upper end of the housing 62 is closed by a top plate 70 thus forming a sealed unit which is filled with a gas or other fluid which expands when subjected to heat.
Disposed interiorly of the housing 62 is an elongated cylindrical bellows '72 having a lower plate 74 connected thereto in sealed relation in any suitable manner. The center of the plate 74 is provided with an internally threaded boss 76that is attached to the boss 50 by the external threads 52 thereof thereby connecting the lower end of the bellows 72 stationarily to the valve body 18 with the threaded connection 52 enabling detachment of the bellows 72 when necessary. The upper end of the bellows 72 is provided with a closure plate 78 that is provided with a central downwardly extending internally threaded boss 80 which is in threaded engagement with the upper externally threaded end 46 of the valve stem 44 with this threaded connection enabling the valve stem 44 to be detached from the bellows by employing a screwdriver in the transverse slot or kerf 40 by holding the bellows 72 from rotation thereby enabling replacement of the components as necessary.
The expansible gas or fluid in the housing 62 is externally of the bellows and the valve spring 34 normally retains the valve member 36 in closed position and the bellows 72 in extended condition. When temperature around the housing and sensors 64 increases, the fluid or gas therein will expand thus causing the bellows 72 to collapse inwardly and effectively shortening the length of the bellows 72 thereby moving the valve stem 44 downwardly .thus moving the valve member 36 downwardly off of the valve seat 26 thereby enabling pressurizedfire extinguishing material within the container 12 to be discharged through the discharge nozzle 56.
The top plate 78 is provided with an upwardly extending internally threaded boss 82 extending from. the top surface thereof and the undersurface of the top plate is provided with a conical valve seat 84 which is engaged by a correspondingly tapered actuating member 86 that forms a closure for the valve seat 84 when engaged therewith. The actuator 86 includes an upwardly extending cylindrical member 88 having external threads 90 and internal threads 92 formed therein. The external threads 90 extend to the tapered surface of the actuator 86 while the internal threads 92 extend throughout the internal bore of the cylindrical member 88 with the external threads 90 threadedly engaging the internally threaded boss 82 as at 94. The upper end of the externally threaded member 88 is provided with a manual handle structure generally designated by the numeral 96 and which includes a plate 98 having a depending internally threaded boss 100 thereon that is in threaded engagement with the external threads 90 of the cylindrical member 88 as illustrated in FIG. 2. The plate 98 is detachably mounted on the cylindrical member 88 by a set screw 102 thus locking the plate 98 to thecylindrical member 88 but enabling the manual handle assembly 96 to be removed. One side of the plate or transverse rod 98 is provided an upstanding handle 104 terminating in a knob 106 or the like to facilitate rotation of the manual handle 96. With the manual handle 96 mounted onthe cylindrical member 88 and locked nonrotatably thereto by the set screw 102, the handle 104 may be rotated thus causing the cylindrical member 88 and the actuator 86 on the lower end thereof to move inwardly in relation to the top plate 70 thus causing the actuator 86 to engage the top plate 78 attached to the bellows 72 and move the top plate along with the valve stem 44 and valve member 36 downwardly .to move the valve member 36 away from the valve seat 26 thus manually discharging fire extinguishing material through the nozzle 56. Thus, while the device is normally automatic in operation in response to temperature increase, the device is also manually actuated when desired by merely rotating the knob 106 or. handle 104.
The cylindrical member 88 also includes a'valve assembly 108 for refilling the interior of the housing 62 and the sensors 64 with expansible fluid or gas. This valve structure 108 includes a valve seat 110 that is screw threaded into the lower end of the cylindrical member 88 by engagement with the internal threads 92. As illustrated, the valve seat 110 is recessed upwardly into the bottom of 'the actuator 86 which includes a recess 112 therein to space the valve seat 110 upwardly above the lower edge of the actuator 86. A
valve member 114 is engaged with the valve seat 110 and includes a stem 116 extending upwardly through the valve seat 110 and through a valve stem guide 118 in the upper end portion of the cylindrical member 88 which is also in threaded engagement with the internal threads 92. Surrounding the valve stem 116 is a coil compression valve spring 120 which has the lower end thereof engaged with the upper surface of the valve seat 110 and the upper end engaged with a flangel22 that is rigid with the valve stem 116 with engagement of the flange 112 with the valve stem guide 118 serving to limit the upward movement of the valve stem 116 but the assembly is installed so that the spring 120 will effectively retain the valve member 114 against the valve seat 110 thereby retaining the expansible fluid or gas within the housing 62. The upper end of the valve stem 116 terminates at or slightly below the upper end of the cylindrical member 88 and may be provided with a spherical enlargement 124 or any other suitable structure for enabling an actuator to open the valve when a source of pressurized expansible fluid is con nected with the cylindrical member 88 such as by using the external threads 90 so that as an adapter unit is screwed onto the threads 90, an actuator therein will engage the upper end of the valve stem 124 and open the valve 1 14 so that a supply of expansible fluid or gas within the housing 62 may be replenished. Thus, in-
order toreplenish the supply of expansible fluid, it is only necessary to release the set screw 102 and rotate the manual handle 96 in a manner to remove it from the upper end of the cylindrical member 88 as illustrated in FIG. 3 thus enabling a refill device to be attached to the upper end of the cylindrical member 88, open the valve 114 and replenish the supply of expansible gas within the housing 62.
The discharge nozzle 56 is in the form of a cylindrical body 126 having screw threaded engagement with an internally threaded aperture or bore as at 128. The aperture or bore in the valve body 18 extendslaterally from the hollow area 22 and the screw threaded connection 128 enables the nozzle 56 to be removed and interchanged with other nozzles having different discharge characteristics orto enable a conduit or the like to be connected thereto for discharging the fire extinguishing material in any suitable location or direction. The inner end of the cylindrical member 126 is provided with a plate 130 having aplurality of apertures 132 extending therethrough with the apertures being disposed adjacent the periphery of the cylindrical member 126 thus leaving the center of the plate 130 imperforate. The center of the plate is provided with an externally threaded stud 134 thereon which de tachably receives a cylindrical member 136 having a deflector plate 138 on the outer end thereof exteriorly of the end of the cylindrical member 126 so that extinguishing material passing out through the passageway 140 defined by the interior of the cylindrical member 126 and the exterior of the rod like cylindrical member 136 will be deflected outwardly by the deflector 138; The discharge characteristics from the nozzle may be varied by replacing the deflector 138 with other types of deflectors or if desired, the entire nozzle 56 may be replaced by other types of nozzles or replaced with a conduit to enable remote discharge of the fire extinguishing material if desired.
The pressure gauge and refill assembly 58 is also mounted in an internally threaded bore 142 in the valve body 18 which communicates with the hollow area 28 below the valve member 36 and the transverse plate 24 thus communicating the bore 142 with the interior of the container or tank 12. Threaded into the inner end of the bore 142 is a valve seat 144 with a valve member 146 engaging the inner end of the valve seat 144 as illustrated in FIG. 4. Also threaded into the threaded bore 142 is a valve stem guide 148 which slidably receives a valve stem 150 that isfixed to the valve member 146. A valve spring 152 of the coil compression type encircles the valve stem 150 with one end engaging the valve seat 144 and the other end engaging a.
flange 154 stationarily mounted on the valve stem 150 thus serving to retain the valve member 146 against the valve seat 144 in a known manner. The valve stem guide 146 is provided with passageway 156 extending therethrough to enable communication with the interior of the container 12 when the valve member 146 is opened. The outer end of the valve stem 150 is provided with a spherical enlargement 158 or other suit able actuating means which is normally disposed inwardly of the outer surface of the valve body 18 as illus trated in FIG. 4.
A pressure gauge 160 of anysuitable type and having an indicating dial and needle assembly 162 includes an externally threaded boss 164 that is threaded into the bore 142. The inner end of the threaded boss 164 on the gauge 160 is provided with a transverse actuator 166 that engages the outer end 158 of the valve stem 150 when the pressure gauge 160 is threaded inwardly into the bore 142 thereby opening the valve 146 and communicating the interior of the container with the pressure gauge 160 so that the pressure within the tank or container 12 will be reflected by the dial and needle assembly 162 thus enabling an observer, inspector orthe like to readily determine the pressure condition within the container 12 and thus enable the container 12 to be refilledwhen necessary. Refilling is accomplished by removing the pressure gauge 160 and threading an adapter from a supply of pressurized fire extinguishing material into the bore 140 with the adapter including an actuator for engaging the valve stem head 158 thus opening the valve v164 after which the fire extinguishing material in the container 12 may be replenished. After the tire extinguishing material has been discharged into the container 12, the refill adapter may be removed and the pressure gauge 160 replaced.
. An alternative method of filling the container is by removal of the discharge nozzle 56 from its threaded opening and a threaded attachment which permits pressurizing the container through the valve 36 may be employed with the valve opening downwardly and creceive one of the chemical reagents if the type of fire ex-' tinguishing material disclosed in the above-mentioned patents is used. If chemical reagents such as soda and acid or a foam type extinguisher are used, a discharge tube 31 is employed with a nozzle 57 provided therefor for discharging the fire extinguishing material when the chemical reagents are mixed. This structure, of course, would not be used when a pressurized type fire extinguishing material is employed since it is open to the ambient atmosphere and communicates with the tank 12 adjacent the bottom thereof as illustrated in broken line in FIG. 1.
A squeeze grip handle assembly 168 is mounted on the valve body 18 and includes a lower handle member I 170 that is rigidly affixed to the valve body or housing 18 in any suitable manner and is curved to conform with a persons hand so that the fire extinguisher may be carried by gripping the handle 170 if desired. Also, a valve actuator 172 is slidably mounted in the valve housing 18 within the cavity 22 and includes a pointed inner end 174 and a downwardly facing cam surface 176 which engages the inclined bottom edge of a longitudinal slot 178 formed in the valve stem 44 so that when the actuator 172 is moved inwardly, the cam surface 176 will force the valve 36 downwardly to an open position. This provides for manual actuation of the valve 36 independent of the bellows 72.
The outer end of the actuator 172 is provided with an enlarged head 180 with a coil compression spring 182 encircling the actuator 172 and spring biasing the actuator 172 to a retracted position as illustrated in FIG. 2 which enables the spimg 34 to retain the valve 36 against the valve seat 26.
An actuating and protecting plate 184 is provided in overlying relation to the outer end portion of the actuator 172 with the inner lower surface of the plate 184 engaging the rounded outer surface of the enlarged head 180 on the actuator 172 so that as the plate 184 is swung about a central fulcrum, the lower end thereof will move inwardly while the upper end thereof will move outwardly to the position illustrated in FIG. 1.
A pivotal handle 186 is provided for actuating the plate 184 with the free end of the handle 186 being disposed adjacent the lower surface of the sensor arm 64 and retained releasably adjacent the tubular housing 62 by a resilient O-ring 188 or the like. The lower end of the handle 184 is provided with a pair of lugs 190 pivoted to stationary bracket lugs 192 on the housing 18 for pivotally supporting the handle 186 for swinging movement from the position illustrated in FIG. 2 which is the normal retracted position to the position illustrated in FIG. 1 so that as the handles 186 and 170 are squeezed together, the valve actuator 172 will open the valve 36 for discharging fire extinguishing material.
As illustrated in FIG. 2, the lower end of the handle 186 is provided with an inward projection 194 which engages the plate 184 below the center thereof so that as the handle 186 is swung downwardly, the projecting end 194 will engage the outer surface of the plate 184 and pivot it about the same pivot axis as the handle lugs 190 with the lugs on the plate 184 being independent of the lugs 190 on the handle 186 so that the plate 184 is actually independent of the handle 186 except when the handle is pivoted downwardly toward the position illustrated in FIG. 1 which moves the lower end portion of the plate 184 inwardly which opens the valve 36.
When the pivotal handle l86.is released, the valve actuator 172 is retracted by the spring 182 and also by the camming force exerted by the inclined surface 176 engaging the inclined bottom surface of the slot- 178 and the spring 34 urging the valve 36 toward closed position. Thus, this device is effective as a potable fire extinguisher which can be manually operated and also effective as a portable fire extinguisher which incorporates a thermally sensitive device to provide for automatic operation upon rise in temperature to or beyond a predetermined high temperature.
The specific construction of the tank and the various threaded connec-tions may be varied to enable the thermally and manually actuated device of the present invention to be assembled therewith. Also, this fire extinguisher employs sensors having an orifice of predetermined size in each sensor arm thus controlling the expansion of the expansible heat-sensitive fluid. The expansible fluid acting on the greater surface of the bellows will cause the hollow bellows to move downwardly to open the valve thus allowing pressurized fire extinguishing material within the tank to be discharged through the nozzle. The temperature sensing device does not depend exclusively upon the impingement of flames to react but will react to a rise in temperature thus providing protection that is highly desirable in fire protection objectives. This type of fire extinguisher is especially desirable where it can be mounted in an area where it will be responsive to a rise in temperature for promptlyactivating a fire extinguisher so that a fire may be extinguished during the initial stages of the fire. Exemplary of such areas are bedrooms, garages, boiler rooms, storage areas, living rooms, and places of business and other areas in which fires may occur.
The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur'to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention.
What is claimed as new is as follows:
1. A fire extinguisher comprising a container for receiving fire extinguishing -material, a valve body mounted on said container, said valve 'body including a valve seat therein, a valve member engaging said valve seat, a discharge nozzle in said valve body for discharging fire extinguishing material from the container when the valve member is opened, and temperature responsive means for opening said valve member in response to ambient temperature rise to a predetermined temperature, said temperature responsive means including heat sensor means having an expansible fluid therein oriented for sensing a rise in ambient temperature, and bellows means connected with the valve member and oriented for movement of the valve member from one position to another in response to expan sion of the expansible fluid in the heat sensor means, said valve member including an elongated valve stem extending outwardly from said valve body in sealed relation thereto, said bellows means including a bellows having one end attached to the valve body and the other end attached to the valve stem with the valve stem extending axially of the bellows, a housing surrounding said bellows in sealed relation to the valve body and enclosing the bellows in spaced relation thereto, said sensor means being communicated with the housing with the space between thebellows and housing being filled with expansible fluid whereby expansion of the expansible fluid in the heat sensor means will collapse the bellows longitudinally thus moving the valve stem and opening the valve member.
2. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said heat sensor means includes at least one heat sensor arm extending outwardly from the housing, said housing including an orifice of predetermined size communicating the heat sensor arm with the housing for controlling expansion of the expansible fluid into the housing.
3. The structure as defined in claim 1 together with a manual actuating means mounted on said housing for engagement with the end of the bellows having the valve stem attached thereto thereby enabling inward movement of the bellows for manually opening the valve member.
4. The structure as defined in claim 3 wherein said manual actuating means includes a screw threaded member threaded through the housing and having an inner end engaging the bellows, handle means on the outer end thereof to enable actuation of the screw threaded member for opening the valve member.
5. The structure as defined in claim 4 wherein said threaded member having the handle means thereon is hollow and provided with a spring biased valve assembly in communication with the interior of the housing, said handle means being removable to enable access to the interior of the hollow member and valve assembly to enable filling of the housing and sensor means with expansible fluid.
6. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said discharge nozzle includes a tubular member screw threaded into the valve body to enable removal of and interchange of the nozzle, and a deflector removably mounted on the tubular member to deflect fire extinguishing material in a predetermined pattern.
7. The structure a defined in claim 1 together with a pressure gauge assembly screw threaded into the valve body, a valve assembly in said valve body to communicate the gauge assembly with the interior of the container when the gauge assembly is threaded inwardly for measuring the pressure of fire extinguishing material in the container, said pressure gauge assembly being removable to enable the container to be filled with fire extinguishing material.
8. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said heat sensor means includes a plurality of hollow tubular members filled with expansible fluid and operatively associated with the housing to actuate the bellows and valve member in response to heat applied to the tubular members.
9. The fire extinguisher as defined in claim 1 together with handle means connected to the container to facilitate handling and carrying thereof to provide a portable fire extinguisher, and manually actuated valve operating means mounted in said valve body and engaging said valve member to manually open said valve member independent of actuation of the temperature responsive means.
10. The fire extinguisher as defined in claim 9 wherein said manually actuated valve operating means includes a pivotally mounted squeeze handle disposed exteriorly of the valve body, releasable means retaining the squeeze handle in inoperative position, but releasable to enable the squeeze handle to move to a position for opening the valve member.
11. The fire extinguisher as defined in claim 10 wherein said valve member and manually actuated valve operating means includes coating cam surfaces for reciprocating the valve member in response to lateral movement of the manually actuated valve operating means.
12. A thermally resposive fire extinguishing apparatus comprising a valve body including a valve seat therein, a valve member engaging said valve seat, a discharge nozzle communicated with said valve body for discharging fire extinguishing material when the valve member is moved away from the valve seat, and temperature responsive means for opening said valve member in response to ambient temperature rise to a predetermined temperature, said temperature responsive means including bellows means connected with the valve member and oriented for movement of the valve member from one position to another upon collapse of the bellows means, said bellows means including a bellows having one end attached to the valve body and the other end attached to the valve member in sealed relation thereto, a housing suroundi'ng said bellows in sealed relation to the valve body and enclosing the bellows in spaced relation thereto the space between the bellows and housing being filled with expansible fluid whereby expansion of the expansible fluid caused by a rise in ambient temperature above a predetermined temperature will collapse the bellows thus moving the valve member away from the valve seat for discharging fire extinguishing material.
13. The structure as defined in claim 12 wherein said bellows is constructed of flexible, resilient material, said valve member including spring means biasing the valve member toward the valve seat whereby reduction in ambient temperature will reduce the volume of the expansible fluid enabling the bellows to return to nor mal condition and the valve member to automatically return to a closed position upon reduction in ambient temperature, said valve member including a stem extending axially into the bellows and having a terminal end attached to the end of the bellows remote from the valve body, the other end of the bellows being attached to the valve body whereby inward collapse of the bellows will move the ends of the bellows towards each other thereby moving the valve stem and valve member longitudinally for moving the valve member away from the valve seat.