US 3798788 A
A boot and glove drying apparatus including an axially extended hollow main member, means supplying drying air, such as moving heated air to the main member and a plurality of hollow branch members attached to the main member and in direct air communication with the interior of such main members so that when boots, etc. are positioned on the branch members air is circulated within the boot to dry the same.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Q United States Patent 1191 1111 3,798,788 Kuntz Mar. 26, 1974 [5 BOOT AND GLOVE DRYING APPARATUS 1,320,076 1/1963 France 34/104 7 9 B 34 2 1161 Inventor: Donald Kuml, 361 Sullivan 3351 1311933 $5326.11??? 341233 Aurora, 111. 60504 22 Filed: une 5, 1972 1 J Primary Examiner-Kenneth W. Sprague  Appl- 259,500 Assistant ExaminerJames C. Yeung Attorney, Agent, or FirmHill, Sherman, Meroni, 52 us. (:1 34/104, 34/151, 34/239 Gross  Int. Cl. F26b 25/00  Field of Search 34/91, 92, 104, 151, 163,
34/232. 239  ABSTRACT  References Cited A boot and glove drying apparatus including an axially UNITED STATES PATENTS extended hollow main member, means supplying dry- 3,256,617 6/1966 Konstandt 34/239 g air, Such as m ing heated air to the main member 1,731,272 10/1929 Schrenkeisem. 34/104 and a plurality of hollow branch members attached to 2,85 00 /1958 ales 34/151 the main member and in direct air communication 2101'161 12/1937 Whitcma" 34/239 with the interior of such main members so that when (3/1948 34/104 boots, etc. are positioned on the branch members air 3,626.60... l /l97l GlOWZlCkl is circulated within the boot to y the Same.
FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS Denmark 34/104 10 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures Pmmmmzs m4 3798.788 sum 1 0r 2 PATENTEU MR 28 1974 SHEEIEUFZ BOOT AND GLOVE DRYING APPARATUS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The invention relates to clothes drying and organizing apparatuses and more particularly to an apparatus for drying and orderly storing boots, gloves and related apparel.
2. Prior Art As is known, boots, gloves and related apparel become moist or wet from perspiration and/or inclement weather so that upon removal, such apparel must be dried and stored for future use and easy access. When a large number of such articles of clothing must be simultaneously dried, a large capacity drying means must be provided and an unsightly scattering of such articles of clothing about a heating duct, a radiator or other conventional drying means results, particularly when children or other non-responsible persons are involved. Boots, gloves and other like apparel are difficult to thoroughly dry in a relatively short period of time because their interiors are not readily ventilated and/or exposed to air for removal of moisture. Some apparatuses are known for drying a single pair of boots or the like, however, they are at best limited utility and do not alleviate the problems of orderly storing a plurality of such apparel so as to be readily accessible for future use. Storage racks or the like do not thoroughly dry apparel placed thereon.
Accordingly, it is highly desirable to provide an economical, large capacity apparatus for drying and orderly storing boots, gloves and related apparel that is safe and readily utilizable by anyone, including children.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention provides an apparatus for drying and orderly storing a plurality of boots, gloves and related apparel. The apparatus generally comprises a base member having a hollow portion, means for supplying drying air to such hollow portion, such as an electrically operated heating element positioned within the hollow portion, or a conduit interconnecting the hollow portion with a source of circulating air, such as a heating duct or the like; a plurality of somewhat .I-shaped auxiliary tube members attached and extending from the periphery of the hollow member for directing the drying air from the interior of the hollow member to the open ends of the auxiliary tubes. In certain embodiments, the apparatus includes a flat cap-like member that fits onto the hollow portion and has a perforated upfacing surface and a plurality of projecting hooks along the peripheral side surfaces thereof. In certain other embodiments, the apparatus includes a support rack for the hollow portion and associated elements. The rack includes storage shelves and hooks. Boots, shoes and similar apparel are individually placed on the auxiliary tubes for drying from the interior thereof and gloves, hats and similar apparel are also placed on the auxiliary tubes or on the perforated upfacing surface of the cap-like member on the shelves for conventional drying. Coats, scarves and similar apparel are hung from the projecting hooks. In this manner, related apparel is quickly and thoroughly dried, orderly stored at a single location and are readily available for future use.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is an elevational view, with parts broken away, of a preferred embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 2 is a top plan view taken along line II-II of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a bottom sectional view taken along line III- --III of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a partial elevational view of another embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 5 is a side elevational perspective view of another preferred embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 6 is a partial elevational view of another embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 7 is a partial elevational view of yet another embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 8 is an elevational view of another embodiment of the invention; and
FIG. 9 is a similar view of a further embodiment of the invention.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS The invention provides an apparatus for readily drying and orderly storing a plurality of boots, shoes, gloves, scarves, hats and related apparel. The apparatus is economical to manufacture, easy to assemble and is efficient and safe for use by anyone, including children. The invention readily dries the interior of boots, shoes, gloves and like articles having hidden recesses in a short period of time to render the same ready for comfortable and sanitary future use. While the invention has many obvious uses in a home, it also has uses in large institutions, for example such as in an army barracks whereat it can be positioned at a given location to dry, sanitize and orderly store for further use the shoes, boots, etc. of the personnel residing at such location. Similary, the invention can be provided in commercial establishments, such as a ski lodge or the like, to dry out customers boots, etc. and make the dried boots readily available for future use.
As shown at FIG. 1, one embodiment 10 of the invention comprises an apparatus having as main components thereof a base member 11, a vertically extending main tube member 15, a plurality of auxiliary members 17 and a flat cap-like member 18.
The base member is preferably a regularly shaped plate of a size sufficient to stably support the apparatus 10 on a floor and prevent it from tipping or the like when it is loaded with apparel. The base member 11 is preferably composed of metal, however, wood, ceramic or other similar material can also be utilized. In an exemplary construction, the member 1 1 is a 24 x 24 inch square composed of a 10 guage metal. An upfacing hollow stub portion 12 is centered onto the base member 11 and rigidly secured thereto, as by welding or the like. A conventional electrically operated heating means Hm (best seen in FIG. 3), such as a V heating'element, is positioned within the hollow stub portion 12 to provide heated air to the apparatus. A fan or the like may be incorporated into the heating means if desired, although it is not necessary. As will be appreciated, heated air will naturally move upwardly so as to circulate within the passage of the apparatus. Further, the amount of heat provided by the heating means Hm is not excessive so that gentle drying occurs. The heating means Hm is operationally connected via power cord P to a suitable source of electrical power. In preferred embodiments, the cord P is provided with a timer mechanism T so that the duration of the heating cycle can easily be regulated.
The vertically extending main tube member fits onto the upstanding stub portion 12 and is secured thereto, as by a pluraity of set screws 15a. In large installations, it is desirable to include cold air openings along the bottom portion of member 15. Heated air produced by the heating means Hm is directed upwardly by the interior walls of the main tube member 15. The main tube member 15 is preferably composed of a relatively thin gauge metal, however, other heatimpervious materials such as certain plastics, ceramics, asbestos, etc. are also useful and can be of any thickness desired. The dimensions of the tube member 15 may be selected in accordance with the proposed use and an exemplary size found convenient for home use, is a 4 foot tube having a 6 inch diameter.
A plurality of hollow somewhat .l-shaped auxiliary tubes 17 are attached to the peripheral side walls of tube member 15 so as to extend upwardly at an angle of less than about 90 to such side walls. The auxiliary or branch tubes17 are in direct communication with the interior of the main tube member 15 so that moving air, which may be heated somewhat above room temperature, is guided therefrom to the open ends 17a of each of the auxiliary tubes 17. In an exemplary construction, short hollow stubs are attached, as by welding, onto the side walls of the tube member 15, which are appropriately pierced to provide direct communication between the interior of the stubs and the interior of the tube 15. The open-ended .l-shaped auxiliary tubes 17 slip-fit onto the protruding stub portion and may be secured thereto, as by metal screws. This type of construction allows simplifiederection of the apparatus by the relatively unskilled user. Of course, the auxiliary tubes 17 may be fastened directly to the main tube 15 if desired. In an exemplary construction, the dimensions of the elongated portion of one of such auxiliary tubes is about 9 inches and the height dimension of the curved portion thereof is about 1 inch. Of course, other sizes are also utilized. In the embodiment here illustrated, all of the tubes'17 are of an identical size, however, as shown in other embodiments their dimensions are variable to accommodate, for example, different length boots.
The flat-cap-like member 18 has a rectangularly shaped cross section with the upfacing surface 18a separated from the downfacing surface 18b by peripheral side walls 180. The space between the surfaces 18a and 18b allow the moving heated air to -be distributed over the entire surface area and provide substantially uniform heat to the upfacing surface 18a. A plurality of substantially uniformly distributed perforations 18110 are disposed on the surface 180, allowing the heated air that is conducted upwardly to escape. A depending hollow neck portion 20 is attached to surface 18b at the approximate center thereof and fits within the interior of the main tube member 15. Of course, surface 18b has an appropriate opening at its center area so'that heated air passes directly from the tube member 15 upwardly through the perforations l8aa. A plurality of hooks 21, such as portions of conventional coat hooks, are attached to the peripheral side walls 180 for support of articles of clothing and the like. The cap-like member 18 is preferably composed of metal but other suitable material can also be utilized. In an exemplary construction, the cap-like member 18 is composed of a relatively light gauge sheet metal formed into a 24 X 24 X 3/4 inch box-like configuration and provided with appropriate perforations and hooks as described above.
In the embodiment 10a illustrated at FIG. 4, a
damper control means C is provided along the upper portion of main tube member 15 so as to prevent heated air from freely escaping through the cap-like member 18. The damper control means C insure that sufficient heating air is directed through the auxiliary tubes 17 to completely dry boots or the like positioned thereon. An exemplary form of the damper control means C comprises an appropriately shaped piece of metal or the like and snugly fits within the interior of main tube 15 having an axial shaft connected thereto which protrudes through the side walls of tube 15 for manual and/or automatic pivoting around such shaft so as to partially block the free passage of air within the tube 15.
The embodiment illustrated at FIG. 5 comprises a rack means 30' that includes four or more upright posts 31 securely fastened to one another by upper cross members 33 and lower shelf members 35 and 35a. The cross members 33 and shelf members 35 and 35a are secured to the posts 31 in a suitably rigid manner, as by welding. Each of the posts 31 is provided with a plurality of projecting hooks 32 for support of larger apparel, such as coats, etc. Each of the shelves 35 and 350 are preferably formed'of expanded metal mesh or the like so as to provide air circulation through such shelves.
An air distribution manifold means 38 is rigidly secured to the underside of at least one of the shelves as 35. The manifold means 38 generally comprises an axially extending hollow member somewhat in the form of a rectangular box having distribution openings 38a such as transverse slots or the like so that drying air provided to the manifold means 38 exits along the upfacing surface of manifold means 38 through such distribution points 38a. The manifold means 38 maybe provided with an internal heating means, such as discussed in conjunction with embodiment l0 and in such forms includes a suitable electrical cord 39 for providing energy to the heating means. In other forms, the manifold means 38 may be provided with a conduit for connection with a forced air means (not shown). A plurality of auxiliary or branch tubes 37 are secured in working relation above the distribution openings 38:; of the manifold 38 and each pair of tubes 37 are joined together by a conduit 37a so that drying air must exit from the manifold means 38 up through conduit 37a and into each of the tubes 37a and into the apparel placed on such tubes.
Dried apparel and the like may be stored in an orderly fashion along bottom shelf35a while smaller apparel such as gloves, scarves, etc. may be stored along the upper shelf 35 since a certain amount of the drying air will be available to such shelf area for drying any apparel thereon. As will be appreciated, the apparatus of embodiment 30 may be made of any size desired, such as for commercial or institutional use.
FIG. 6 illustrates an embodiment 30a which is somewhat similar to the embodiment 30 in construction, except that the auxiliary tubes 37 are of two distinct sizes. The smaller tubes 37c are of a size suitable for regular shoes or childrens boots while the larger tubes 37d have a greater length so as to accommodate longer boots.
The embodiment 30b illustrated at FlG. 7 is also similar in construction to the embodiment 30 except that the auxiliary tubes 37 are comprised of an individual pair of tubes 37e which gradually increase in length to accommodate boots and the like having increased shank portions.
The branch tubes 37 generally comprise two opposing tubes, somewhat similar to tubes 17 in embodiment which are secured along their bottom portions to one another by a flat conduit having an opening along the bottom. In the configuration, a pair of such tubes assume a somewhat V-shaped configuration with the apex of the V being replaced by a flat surface. The downfacing opening of such flat surface is mounted directly above each of the distribution openings 38a of the manifold means 38.
FIG. 8 illustrates an embodiment 10b similar in construction to embodiment 10 except that cold air return openings d are provided along the bottom portion of tube member 15 and a nipple conduit 150 is provided for interconnection with a source of moving air, such as a heating duct or the like. In addition, the auxiliary tubes 17c are of a varying length so as to provide a somewhat Christmas-tree" configuration to allow various lengths of boots to be positioned on appropriately sized tubes.
The embodiment 10c illustrated at FIG. 9 is also similar in construction to the embodiment 10b and includes a plurality of individual baffle means B positioned in the interior of tube 15 above the openings communicating with each set of auxiliary tube members 170. The baffle means B are ofa gradually increasing size so that moving air is diverted by each baffle means to its respective set of auxiliary tubes so that a portion of such air is allowed to by-pass the baffle means for the next set of auxiliary tubes and/or the cap member 18.
in considering the operation of, for'example, the embodiment 10, the apparatus is positioned at a given location and foot apparel Fa such as one or more pair of boots, shoes, slippers, etc. are individually positioned on each of the auxiliary tubes 17 so that the open ends 17a of such tubes are inserted into the remote recesses thereof, as in the toe area of boots or shoes. Other apparel, such as gloves, are positioned on the upfacing surface 18a and/or hung from hooks 21. Of course, such other apparel may also be positioned on the tubes 17, if desired. The heating means Hm is activated in a conventional manner, with or without simultaneous activation of the timer mechanism T and/or the damper control means C. In a relatively short period of time, all apparel on the apparatus 10 are thoroughly dried and ready for future use. As is recognized, dry apparel is materially more sanitary than moist apparel since germs, fungi and other noxious organisms do not thrive in dry areas. Further, the dried apparel is neatly organized on the apparatus and is readily accessible to a user of such apparel.
ln summation, the invention broadly provides an apparel drying apparatus comprised of an axially extended hollow main member, means supplying drying air to the main member and a plurality of hollow branch or auxiliary members attached to the peripheral surfaces of the main member with direct air communication between the main member and the branch members so that drying air passes from the main member to such branch member.
The specific embodiments here described are only illustrative of the invention. Other embodiments, including one-piece construction of the main component, use of other sources of drying air, different shaped auxiliary tubes, etc. are also encompassed by the invention. Various other changes in structure may additionally occur to those skilled in the art; and all of these changes are to be understood as forming a part of the invention insofar as they fall within the true spirit and scope of the appendant claims.
I claim as my invention: 7
l. A drying apparatus for articles of clothing comprising;
a base member having an upstanding hollow stub portion;
a heating means positioned within said stub portion for providing drying air;
an axially extended tube member mounted at a first end thereof on said stub portion for providing a passage for the drying air provided by said heating means;
a plurality of radially extending auxiliary tube members attached about the periphery of said axially extended tube member, one end of each such auxiliary tube members being in direct communication with the interior of such axially extended tube member and the other end being open to atmosphere so that drying air passes through each of said auxiliary tube members; and
a cap-like member having a perforated upfacing surface area for support of articles of clothing, a hollow interior chamber for distribution of heated air over such surface area and a depending hollow neck portion attached thereto and mounted onto a second end of said axially extending tube member, said cap-like member having a plurality of hooks projecting from its peripheral side surfaces.
'2. A drying apparatus as defined in claim 1 wherein the auxiliary tubes are .l-shaped, with the curved portions thereof being open to atmosphere.
3. A drying apparatus as defined in claim 1 wherein the heating means is an electrically operated heating element.
4. A drying apparatus as defined in claim 1 wherein some of the branch members are of different length than other branch members so as to accommodate different length apparel.
5. A boot and glove drying apparatus comprising;
a rectangular base portion having an upstanding hollow stub portion attached at a centered area thereof;
an electrically operated heating means positioned within said hollow stub portion;
a vertically extending main tube member having the first end thereof mounted onto said stub portion;
a plurality of auxiliary tube members attached about the peripheral side walls of said main tube member arranged so as to define an acute angle with said side walls, one end of each of such auxiliary tube members being'in direct communication with the interior of said main member and the other end thereof being open to atmosphere; and
a cap-like member having a perforated upfacing flat surface area, a hollow interior chamber, one boundary of which comprises said surface area and a depending hollow neck portion in direct communication with said hollow interior chamber and mounted on a second end of said main tube memher, said cap-like member having a pluraity of hooks projecting from its peripheral side walls.
6. A boot and glove drying apparatus as defined in claim including a damper control means positioned below the cap-like member for selectively diverting amounts of drying air to the auxiliary tubes and the perforated upfacing flat surface area of said cap-like memher.
7. A boot and glove drying apparatus as defined in claim 5 wherein the plurality of auxiliary tube members comprise a plurality of pairs of tubes, at least one of such pairs being of a length dimension less than the length of at least another of such pairs.
8. A drying apparatus for articles of clothing comprising:
a rack means including a plurality of support posts and a storage shelf means attached to said posts;
a drying air manifold means supported by said shelf means and including a plurality of distribution openings for distributing drying air through such openings;
means for supplying drying air to said manifold means;
a plurality of open-ended conduits supported by said shelf means and spaced from one another; means for interconnecting each of said conduits with a distribution opening; and
a plurality of pairs of hollow tubes for supporting an article of clothing on a tube, each tube having an inner end for mounting an open end of a conduit and a somewhat curved outer end for fitting within recesses of the articles of clothing placed thereon, each tube of said pair of tubes being joined to an end of one of said conduits so that drying air passes through said manifold distribution openings into the conduits and through each pair of tubes for drying articles of clothing thereon.
9. A drying apparatus as defined in claim 8 wherein some of the plurality of pairs of tube members are of a different length dimensionthan other pairs of tube members.
10. In an apparel drying apparatus as defined in claim 8 wherein said means for supplying drying air includes a timer mechanism for regulating the heating cycle.