US 3785579 A
Safety release clutch for two part liquidizer container in which the cutter clutch member that is journalled in the lower part is resiliently retracted from engagement with the motor clutch member when the upper part is separated from the lower part for cleansing either one or both parts. In its retracted position the cutters may be locked against relative rotation or permitted to rotate free of the drive clutch member, but in either event there is no projection of elements below the lower part whether the two parts are assembled or not.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [1 1 1111 3,785,579 Voglesonger  J 15-, 1974  LIQUIDIZER SAFETY CLUTCH 3,612,126 10/1971 Emmons et a]. 24l/l99.l2  Inventor: Harry voglesonger Rivenon 3,627,008 12/1971 Samuehan 259/108 x Conn. Primary Examiner-Granvil1e Y. Custer, Jr. Asslgneei y a Corporation of America, Assistant ExaminerHoward N. Goldberg New York, NY. AztornyWatson D. Harbaugh et al.  Filed: Mar. 27, 1972 211 Appl. NIL; 238,385 [571 ABSTRACT Safety release clutch for two part liquidizer container 521 0.8. CI. 241/282.1 259/108 which the chhch member that isjwmaued 51 1m. 01. B02c 18/12 the Part is resiliently retracted fmm engagement  Field of Search 192/89 R 89 A 129 A 'With the Chltch member when the PPer Part is 192/130. 259/108 DIG. 2 2821 separated from the lower part for cleansing either one 282,2 19912 4617 v or both parts In its retracted position the cutters may be locked against relative rotation or permitted to re-  References Cited' tate free of the drive clutch member, but in either event there is no projection of elements below the UNITED STATES PATENTS lower part whether the two parts are assembled or not. 2,755,900 7/1956 Seyfried 259/108 X 2,930,596 3/1960 Waters 259/108 X 17 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures PAIENTE JAN 1 51974 SHEUIBFZ 'LIQUIDIZER SAFETY CLUTCH BACKGROUND OF INVENTION Referring to the co-owned- Emmons US Pat. No. 3,612,126, containers for home use liquidizers are generally provided with high speed cutters carried by a ver tical shaft that is journalled in its bottom wall and driven by a clutch member on its lower end. A jar portion surrounding the cutters has side walls tall enough therabove to discourage a user from manually reaching in far enough to contact the cutters during operation.
There are two types of containers. One is a molded unitary jar with a downwardly opening cavity on the bottom concealing the driven clutch member that is disengaged by removal of the jar; and the other is a two-piece container having a threaded connection between a jar and bottom member at approximately the level of the cutters. The cutters are journalled in the base member.
Several advantages are attained by the use of a two part liquidizing container. The base and jar portions can be more easily and better'cleaned when separated; freedom of design for specialized operation is afforded; and, when desired, different upper portions can be used interchangeably with the base portion, including jars that are narrow or closed at the top. On the other hand, dangers are created for the user with a base portion having exposed cutters when the jar is removed. Not only does the remote possibility still exist that the user might reach into the container and contact the cutters, but with the jar portion removed, the base portion alone, with the cutters openly exposed, can be left on or be returned to the power unit and the cutter clutch element becomes engaged with the motor driven clutch member. The user may unthread the jar portion while retaining the container on the power unit so that the power unit can be used as a wrench on the base portion in manually unthreading them; or, after unthreading the two parts the base portion may be put back in drive position on the power unit to avoid misplacement for either temporary or prolonged storage-without the user disconnecting the plug-in power cord from the house current; or, the base portion can be set on the power unit in a random position in contact with the clutch drive member.
In any event the power switch can be closed thoughtlessly, accidentally or prankishly, and the series wound motor which has high initial torque and high-speed characteristics with a fast start can either fling the base portion as an animated missile,'or almost instantly whirl the cutters at such a speed that they are not likely to be seen by a person reacting quickly to turn off the motor. Also intentional use of exposed'cutters for any purpose is to be discouraged. I
Heretofore the base assembly as a unit alone, without the weight of the jar, has been raised out of its clutch engaging position on a power unit to disengage the clutch members when the jar alone is removed. However, in doing this, a lifter element in the assembly is resiliently projected downwardly below to base assembly and engages only the power unit but also any table top on which it is set with and without the jar mounted in place. The danger of marring a table top or unwittingly tipping the container can be greatly reduced by making the projectable member of a plastic, or redesigning to locate the clutch engagement level higher in the base of the container. Space in this area is at a premium cost-wise even though safety is to be served.
Other endeavors to protect users against injury from the cutters if the power unit is inadvertently energized with or without the jar removed from the base member in drive position include devices in which weight actuated safety cut-off switches have been employed, or the clutch elements are left in engagement and rotation is prevented under a dangerous or damaging locked motor condition, which with a flexible clutch connection, can flip the base portion and-provide a dangerous missile.
SUMMARY OF INVENTION In the present invention the relative movable clutch elements are disposed in a cavity in the bottom of a bottom assembly member where engagement and disengagement takes place within theheight of the bottom assembly. The bottom assembly includes a threaded ring member which defines the cavity, a closure member disposed within the ring member to journal a shaft carrying the cutters at its top, and the driven member threaded on the lower end confines the excursion of the closure member and clutch member to approximately the height of the cavity. A coiled spring interengages the ring and closure members for purposes of declutching and retracts the driven clutch member remotely to the top of the cavity. The spring is overcome when the jar portion is threaded back into position on the ring member into sealed relationship with the closure member, and this returns the driven clutch member to its clutch engaging position.
Preferably locking elements are carried by the closure member at the top of the cavity to lock with the driven clutch member and prevent its rotation when it is declutched. Also,.a normally open safety switch is preferably connected in series with the main power switch with its control button disposed to be depressed by the closure means in its lower position when the container is in sealed relationship therewith.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a liquidizer embodying the preferred embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged vertical sectional view showing the jar and bottom portion of the two piece container assembled and mounted in working position on a power unit with the clutch members in driving engagement;
FIG. 3 is a view similar to FIG. 2 showing the relationship and relative positions of the base portion and power unit with the two portions separated, the clutch members disengaged, and the-bottom portion left on the motor unit; and
FIG. 4 is an enlarged sectional view, taken along line 4-4 of FIG. 3, showing the anti-loosening sealing engagement of the jar and closure means;
FIG. 5 is a schematic circuit associated with the embodiment of FIG. 3.
THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to FIG. 1 in further detail, a liquidizer is illustrated having a multi-part container 10 supported on a power unit 12 that is controlled by a manual switch 14 (FIG. 3). As shown in FIG. 2 the container 10 includes a bottom assembly 16 removably threaded to the upper jar portion 18 as at 17 and may be closed at the top by a suitable removable cap 15.
The power unit 12 includes a housing 20 provided with a series wound motor 22 (FIG. supported therein concentrically with a top wall 24 that has a collar means 26 thereon. The wall 28 of the collar (FIGS. 2 and 3) defines a recess 30 having four angularly spaced resilient L-shaped inserts 32 which serve as lugs 33 that receive the bottom assembly 16 in weight bearing and non-rotative relationship.
The upper end of the vertical shaft 34 of the motor 22 is journalled in a bearing 36 located in the center of the recess 30 on the wall 24 and carries a clutch drive element 25. The upper ends of the lugs 33 are beveled as at 40 to guide the bottom assembly 16 when lowered into place. I
The bottom assembly 16 is made up ofa ring member 42, a closure member 44 and a compression spring 46. The ring member 42 has an outer wall 48 whose outer surface 50 is provided with eight vertical flutes 52 to receive the four lugs 33 vertically in any one of eight predetermined non-rotative positions that are upwardly and readily releasable in that both elements taper slightly in a downward direction. The wall 48 inwardly defines a coarse female thread 54 and preferably tightens in the direction of cutter rotation. The lower wall 58 of the ring member 42 is a spider 60 having eight openings 61 that are oriented with respect to the flutes 52 to receive the push button 62 ofa switch 64 extending through them in each of the eight positions, as later described. The hub 66 of the spider 60 defines a cavity 68 having a depth as much as twice the height of the clutch teeth 70 on the clutch drive element 25. The upper wall 72 of the cavity 68 hasan opening 74 therethrough to receive the cutter shaft 76 and preferably is provided with depending lock lugs 78 engaged by the driven clutch member 80 when in its uppermost position in the cavity (FIG. 3). The wall 82 of the cavity serves as a guide for the spring 46.
The closure member 44 comprises a main circular member 84 provided with a cavity 86 centrally in it receiving the elements defining cavity 68 and of the same depth but with space between their telescoping walls 88 and 82 to accommodate the spring 46. At the center of the upper wall 92 of the cavity 86 a boss 94 is provided having a vertical opening 96 therethrough in which a sintered metal sleeve bearing 98 is press fitted to journal the driven cutter shaft 76 which carries the cutter 100 at the upper end in a conventional manner against a shoulder 102 with a running seal washer 104 between the bearing 98 and cutters 100. The lower end of the shaft 76 is shouldered as at 106 to cooperate with the upper shoulder 102 for axial support of the shaft and the cutters and the driven clutch member 80 thereon. The adjacent ends of the motor drive and driven cutter shafts 34 and 76 are shouldered and threaded to receive engaging clutch members 25 and 80, the driven clutch member 80 having rigid radiating spokes 108 interdigitating with the circularly arranged resilient teeth 70 of the drive clutch member 25. The spokes and teeth are offset whereby their drive faces are on true radii and are movable into and out of engagement with each other within the depth of the cavity 68. Outwardly of the lower edge of the cavity wall 88 a radial flange 112 is provided which carries on its upper surface a neoprene washer 114 coextensive with the outer edge of the flange which coacts with the centering guide 56 to center the closure assembly with respect to the lugs 32.
The jar I8 is preferably made of glass sothat it can withstand being washed in a dishwasher at a high temperature. The inner wall 118 of the jar tapers upwardly with the clover leaf flutes 120 preferably radially higher at the bottom than at the top for thorough turbulent movement of the jar contents with respect to the cutters 100.
As shown in FIG. 4, whether or not the threads 17 lead in a direction against possible loosening of the jar 18 in the ring member 42 under the hydraulic influence of the swirling contents of the jar, it is to be noted that in lieu thereof or in combination therewith the ring member 42 and closure member 44 may be lightly latched when tightened. They are preferably made of molded plastic and engage in face-to-face contact. The sealing washer 114 is resiliently compressible to augment the separation effort of the spring 46 upon the closure member 44 and ring member 42, and, although a releasable spring detent and ratchet relationship may be provided between the ring and closure members that opposes a relative loosening movement between them, it has been found that several cam protrusions 115 on the bottom face 117 of the flange 112 concentrically coacting with elements 121 on the ring member 42 that may be mating cam protrusions on the upper face 123 of the ring member provide a substantial holding force against hydraulic loosening.
The mating cams define circumferentially elongated, slidably contacting surfaces inclined with the lead of the threads 17 in the direction of tightening and terminate in steeper inclines that oppose tightening whereby .once tightening is being accomplished there terminally feeling of quick release. The thickness and resiliency of the seal is related to this result to provide the camming action described for the last couple increments of movement. The height of each cam is approximately 0.005 inch, and, as noted, the incline of the faces 117 and 123 is that of the threads 17.
In operation, assuming the parts described are in their assembled relation as shown in FIG. 2 and a liquidizing operation has been completed and the parts touched by the ingredients are to be cleansed, reference is made to FIG. 3. The jar 18 is unthreaded for separate handling, the spring 46 is thereby released and lifts the closure member 44 to move the driven clutch member upwardly to disengage with the drive clutch member 25 and engage the locking elements 78 against rotation. The ring member 42 and the closure member 48 are thereby separated far enough for cleansing liquid to move freely in and around all parts and through spider openings 61 for a thorough cleaning with or without the sealing washer 114 being removed.
In event the jar 18 is stored separately and the bottom assembly 16 of the ring member 42 and closure member 44 are placed back upon the power unit for storage the button 62 of the safety switch 64 is not actuated by the closure member, the clutch members 25 and 80 are disengaged and the cutters are locked against rotation for the sake of safety if and when the lower portion of the container is stored on the power unit without the jar attached. Moreover, the jar 18 can be loosely rested on the ring member 42 and the end turns of the coarse threads will weight support the jar without actuating the safety switch 64. Moreover, with the switch button 62 being located towards the center of the top wall 24 of the power unit it is not likely that it will be contacted by the ring member 32 if resting askew, and if such happened the clutch members would be in declutched relation by their relative remoteness.
Accordingly, if the main switch 14 happened to be closed under any of these circumstances several safety factors are protective against personal injury. The drive clutch 25 being above the upper wall 24 of the power unit 12 would serve with the cavity 86 as a guide to locate the ring member 42 in its working position with the cutters 100 remaining locked, and, the closure member 44 is out of contact with the safety switch button either because of the spring 46 or the button 62 would only be received in a spider opening 61 with the closure member 44 remote from it, or the ring member 42 cannot touch the button because of non-alignment of the lugs 32 with the grooves 52 which establishes alignment. Thus, inadvertent injury to users is minimized when the two container parts are separated for improved cleansing conditions including both parts being cleanable in a dishwasher, if desired.
What is claimed is:
l. A liquidizing container having an opening at its basefor receiving a rotatable liquefying cutter unit therethrough comprising,
an open bottom jar member having a rim,
.a ring member receiving the bottom end of the jar in axial supported relationship around said rim,
a closure member having a radial peripheral flange thereon defining a marginal shoulder facing the lower end of the jar,
a sealing gasket disposed between said shoulder and said ring member axially receiving the closure member and having a lower wallportion engaging said closure member to compress said sealing gasket between said flange and saidrim,
resilient means between said closure member and ring member urging said closure member upwardly when said ring member and jar member are separated for cleaning purposes, and
cutter means journalled in said closure means and including on its lower end'a driven member supported for relative axial movement when assembling and separating said closure and ring members.
2. The combination called for in claim 1 in which the ring member has a recess in the bottom thereof, and
said driven member reciprocates in the recess on the bottom of the base member above the plane of its lower extremity and being held in working position by the jar assembled in place.
3. The combination called for in claim 2 in which said recess comprises a cavity having a wall spaced a predetermined distance above the upper face of said driven member with said jar assembled on the base member, and
said closure member has a cavity with a wall defining a space between the vertical walls receiving said resilient means in guided relation.
4. The liquidizing container called for in claim 1 in which said ring member has a cavity accommodating 6V said driven member at its spring retracted position of said axial movement, and
locking means disposed between said driven member and said cavity wall interengaged by relative movement induced by said resilient means.
5. The liquidizing container called for in claim 1 in which saidring member and closure member have surfaces in face-to-face contact for locating said driven member in its operative position, and
said sealing gasket being resilient and being free to turn with the gasket and jar rim when tightening.
6. The liquidizing container called for in claim 5 in which the surfaces in said face-to-face contact include rotatively interengaging axial elements at least one of which has an incline upstream of its tightening motion.
7. The liquidizing container called for in claim 5 including rotatively interengaging axial elements of a minimized axial dimension on said surfaces to locally pass each other under resilience remaining in said sealing gasket under hand tightened assembly, of said ring member and closure member.
8. In a liquidizer a container comprising a threadably engaged jar and a removable bottom assembly,
said bottom assembly comprising,
bottom closure means for said jar,
resilient sealing means disposed between said bottom closure means and the lower end of said jar,
ring means threadably engaging the lower end of said jar in a tightening direction and including an element engaging said closure means to compress said sealing means in sealing relationship,
said element and the bottom closure having interface rotatably actuated cam elements placing pressure upon said sealing means as the ring means is tightened, one of said cams having the incline on it of said threadable relationship.
9. A liquidizer comprising,
a power unit having a housing member,
a container having a bottom assembly whose lower end is removably supported on the housing member, and
a rotatable drive clutch member rotatably supported on the housing member and extending above said lower end when the bottom assembly is supported thereon,
said bottom assembly including a. a ring member having a cavity therein accommodating said drive clutch member and an opening centrally of said cavity, andb. a closure member comprising a cutter carrying shaft journalled therein extending through said opening and a driven clutch member on the lower end of the shaft axially reciprocable in said cavity to engage and disengage said drive clutch member,
resilient means between said ring and closure members urging disengagement of said clutch members, and
cutter protective means interengaging said ring and closure members to counteract said resilient means and move said closure member axially with respect to said ring member and said housing member to engage said clutch members.
10. The liquidizer defined 'in claim 9 in which said cutter protective means is a liquidizing container having an opening at its bottom, a sealing means between said container and closure member, and elements surrounding said opening interlocking with said ring member for placing said sealing means under compression.
11. The liquidizer defined in claim 9 in which said ring member has a wall defining external locating guides spaced with equal angularity therearound and a spider defining openings angularly spaced at angles equai to those of said guides,
by a manual switch having a housing with a motor supported beneath an upper wall thereof,
collar means on said wall defining a recess having a plurality of angularly spaced lugs around it,
a motor shaft journalled in said housing and carrying a drive clutch element above the top wall within the configuration defined by said lugs,
a bottom assembly including,
a. a ring member having a cavity means therein accommodating said drive clutch member and flutes on its outer wall surface engaging said lugs in centering relation and securing means on its inner wall surface,
b. a closure member received within said inner wall surface journalling a cutter shaft carrying cutters on its upper end and a driven clutch member on its lower end disposed reciprocably in said cavity coaxially with said drive clutch member to engage and disengage said drive clutch member with relative movement of the closure member,
0. resilient means between said ring member and closure member urging disengagement of said clutch members, and
cutter enclosing means releasably interengaging said closure member and securing means to overcome said resilient means and move said closure member axially with respect to said ring member and said housing member to engage said clutch members. 13. The liquidizer called for in claim 12 in which said ring member has openings in its bottom wall around said cavity providing physical access therethrough to said clousre member from below.
14. The liquidizer called for in claim 12 in which said closure means has a recess receiving said cavity means, said cavity means and recess defining a depth above said upper wall that is at least equal to the overall axial displacement of said clutch members when disengaged with the ring member in place in said collar means.
15. The liquidizer called for in claim 12 in which said driven clutch member has radially spaced elements exposed on its upper sides and the top wall of said cavity has stop elements engaged by said spaced elements to lock said driven clutch against rotation during clutch disengagement.
16. The liquidizer called for in claim 13 including a safety switch carried by said upper wall and having a button located to engage said closure member through one of said openings during the time the clutch members are in engagement.
17. In a liquidizer container comprising threadably engaged jar and removable bottom assembly,
means and said jar.