US 3816070 A
This disclosure relates to improved means for treating laundry or the like by tumbling the laundry in a supporting and rotating drum-like member and causing fluid to be forced through the laundry while the same is being compressed between the supporting drum and a nozzle means disposed within the drum, the nozzle means either forcing the fluid from the nozzle means through the compressed laundry or drawing the fluid through the laundry into the nozzle means.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 Candor et al.
[ METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR TREATING POROUS MATERIAL WITH FLUID  Inventors: Robert R. Candor, 5940 Munger Rd., Dayton, Ohio 45459; James T. Candor, 5440 Cynthia Ln., Dayton, Ohio 45429 Notice: The portion of the term of this patent subsequent to June 3, 1986, has been disclaimed.
 Filed: Jan. 27, I971 211 App]. No.: 110,246
Related US. Application Data  Continuation of Ser. No. 788,278, Dec. 31, 196 8, abandoned, which is a continuation-in-part of Ser.
No. 635,848, May 3, 1967, Pat. No. 3,447,174.
 US. Cl 8/l58,'8/159, 34/133,
34/134, 34/138, 68/19.l, 68/21, 68/43  Int. Cl. B08b 3/10, D06f 25/00  Field of Search 68/19, 20, 19.1, 43, 21;
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,432,319 10/1922 Brandwood, 68/158 X ]*June 11, 1974 Johnson 68/19 X 1,949,278 2/ 1 934 2,470,299 5/1949 Furness 8/158 x 2,666,316 1/1954 Candor 68/21 2,752,770 7/1956 Slate 68/21 2,758,463 8/1956 Clarke 68/15 x 3,262,218 7/1966 Cymbalisty 68/58 x FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 820,591 11/1951 Germany 8/151 Primary Examiner-William 1. Price Assistant Examiner-Alan I. Cantor Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Candor, Candor & Tassone  ABSTRACT This disclosure relates to improved means for treating laundry or the like by tumbling the laundry in a supporting and rotating drum-like member and causing fluid to be forced through the laundry while the same is being compressed between the supporting drum and a nozzle means disposed within the drum, the nozzle means either forcing the fluid from the nozzle means through the compressed laundry or drawing the fluid through the laundry into the nozzle means.
2 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR TREATING POROUS MATERIAL WITH FLUID This application is a Continuation application of its copending parent application, Ser. No. 788,278, filed Dec. 31, 1968, now abandoned, which, in turn, is a continuation-in-part patent application of its copending parent patent application, Ser. No. 635,848, filed May 3, 1967, now US. Pat. No. 3,447,174.
This invention relates to a washing machine with a surface effect air pressure or suction nonle means.
The invention is applicable to washing or dry cleaning and the like. These terms are used herein interchangeably.
A feature of this invention includes means for applying air pressure for agitating, wringing, and evaporatively drying clothes and other laundry or materials in a washing machine, or a dry cleaning machine.
Another feature of this invention includes the use of a surface effect, or ground effect, air pressure nozzle for agitating the clothes and other laundry or other materials during the washing, wringing, and evaporatively drying the clothes, etc.
Another feature of this invention includes the use of a flexible air trapping nozzle for producing such washing, wringing, and drying operation.
Another feature of this invention includes the use of a rigid baffle means on a perforated drum to cooperate with the air trapping nozzle for the purpose of washing, wringing, and evaporatively drying the clothes and other laundry, or materials.
Another feature includes the use of the foregoing features for the purpose of dry cleaning the clothes.
Another feature of this invention is to provide a nozzle means for direct contact with the laundry to cause fluid flow directly through the contacted laundry and nozzle means.
Other features of this invention are apparent from this description, the accompanying drawings, and the appended claimed subject matter.
IN THE DRAWINGS:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of one embodiment of this invention, partly in cross section.
FIG. 2 is a cross section transverse to FIG. 1, in vertical cross section.
' FIG. 3 is a view similar to FIG. 2 and showing the perforated drum in another position.
FIG. 4 is a detailed view of one embodiment of the surface effect pressure nozzle.
FIG. 5 is a longitudinal, horizontal cross section of the nozzle supporting portion of FIGS. 14.
FIG. 6 is an embodiment somewhat similar to FIGS. l-4, and using a substantially circular surface effect nozzle and/or a clothes centering drum construction.
FIG. 7 is an enlarged cross section of the circular plate of FIG. 6.
FIG. 8 is a diagrammatic showing of a combined water pump and air blower for circulating air and/or water through the surface effect nozzle.
FIG. 9 is a cross section of a rear support for an eccentrically supported rotatablenozzle and cylindrical drum.
FIG. 10 is an enlarged fragmentary cross section taken on line 10-10 of FIG. 9.
FIG. 11 is a diagrammatic transverse cross section of FIG. 9.
Referring first to FIGS. l-5, a stationary, imperforate, cylindraceous outer drum is provided to retain washing or dry cleaning liquid for washing, dry cleaning, or otherwise treating materials such as laundry or articles to be washed and/or dry cleaned. An inner, cylindraceous, perforate drum 22 is rotatably mounted in the stationary drum 20, within which the articles to be treated, 24, are placed. These articles may be introduced into and removed from the apparatus through an access opening 26, which may be placed at one end of the drums 20 and 22 in a manner well known to those skilled in the art. Such opening 26 may be provided with suitable covering or door means, also well known to those skilled in the art, for the purpose of retaining the articles to be treated and the liquid introduced therein, also as is well known to those skilled in the art.
Under certain conditions the drum 20 may be rotatable, but for the purpose of brief description it may be referred to as a stationary drum, with the understanding that, under certain conditions, the drum 20 may be rotatable.
A surface effect air pressure applying nozzle means 28 may be placed in the perforated drum 22 and may be so mounted that it can rotate simultaneously with such drum 22. In the embodiment shown in FIGS. l-4, such nozzle means 28 may be provided with a relatively rigid plate support 30, which may be supported or secured to one or both of the end members of the rotatable drum 22. For example, such plate may be secured to the end wall 32 of the rotatable drum 22.
The plate 30 may also besecured to the other end .wall 34, which may be the front end wall of the perforate drum 22, which may be provided with an access opening 36, of the character heretofore described. As shown in FIG. 5, the plate support 30 may be secured to the rotatableend walls 32 and 34, so that the plate 30 rotates with the drum 32.
A flexible, air pressure applying curtain or wall 38 may be secured to the plate 30 in such a manner that the curtain 38 tends to hang downwardly from the plate 30, when the plate 30 is in its lowermost position, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2.
The curtain 38 may be a single curtain, or a double curtain, depending how the central part of the curtain is produced. The outer edges 40, FIG. 4, may be secured to the outer edges 42 of the plate 30. The inner edges 44 of the curtain 38 may be united together, if desired, or they may be separately secured to a central air distributing bar 46, which is provided with a central conduit 48, which has one or more branches with one or more openings 52 for distributing the air to the interior or interiors 54 of the curtain 38. The curtain 38 may have small openings 56 for permitting the air to discharge from the interior or interiors 54 into the central plenum portion 58 of the curtain 38.
The curtain 38 may have end closures 60, FIG. 5, to retain the air in the interior or interiors 54.
The central conduit 48 of the plate support 30 may be connected to a compressed air supply pipe 62, which may have an offset portion 64 connected to a central portion 66, which may be connected to an air supply means to be described.
If desired, a rigid longitudinal baffle 68 may be provided on the drum 22.on the rear or following side of the curtain 38, it being understood that the drum 22, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, rotates in a counterclockwise direction. The purpose of the baffle 68 is to cooperate with the curtain 38 to cause the articles to-be treated to form into an accumulation 24, as indicated by the dotted line 70 in FIG. 2, which is partly under the curtain 38 in the position shown in FIG. 2, to cause such accumulation of clothes 24 to rise with the curtain 38 on the right hand of F IG. '2 and to continue completely around with the curtain 38 until it reaches some position on the falling side, as shown in FIG. 3, where the clothes may fall partly or wholly from the curtain 38, as indicated by the line 72. I
The curtain 38 is of such a character that it tends to retain compressed air from the pipe construction 62-66 to press the curtain 38 downwardly to form lobes 74, which tend to press the clothes downwardly against perforated drum 22 and also allow the compressed air to discharge from the lobes 74 into the central plenum part 58 of the curtain construction and then through the clothes and through the openings 76 in the drum 22. The air then may be allowed to escape, such as through a discharge pipe 78, which may be vented to any desired place, such as to the exterior .of the building in which the apparatus is beingused, if desired.
The pipe 62-66 maybe supplied with compressed throughout the length of the drum 22 or may be less wide at the central part than at the ends 1 12, as desired.
The bafile 68A may have higher wall ends, as shown at 112 in FIG. 6. The outer drum 20A of FIG. 6 may have slanting walls 114, similar to slanting walls 109 and 110 of the inner drum 22. v i
The curtain or wall 38A may be similar to the curtain 38, except that the curtain 38A may be circular in horizontalcross section at all parts thereof, including the plate 30A. I I The supply pipe 62A may enter the plate 30A and maydischarge into any part of the curtain 38A,-without the necessity of a distributing device, since the air can air, which, if desired, may also be heated. For example,
the pipe may pass through a packing box or the like,
80, of well-known construction, which allows the pipe section 66 to rotate with the drum 22 and allows the stationary pipe section 82 to be stationary and to be connected to the air compressor 84. The construction is such that the compressor 84 may supply compressed airthrough. the stationary pipe 82, packing box 80, to the rotatable part 66 of the supply sections62, 64, 66. lf desired, the pipe 82 may pass through or be a part of a chamber 86, which may be heated by an electric heater 88, which heats the air which is pumped by the pump 84 and supplies the same in heated condition to be caused to pass through the clothes 24 and dry the same at'th'e proper time. The electric heater 88 may be automatically controlled by a timeroperated switch 90, which energizes the heater during the desired time of the washing operation to produce the drying action- Additionally, the heater 88 may be controlled by the thermostatic switch 92,'which may be responsive to the air temperature in the chamber 86, such as by a thermostatic bulb 94. I
The perforated drum 22 may be driven at a suitable rotational speed, such as to cause the tumbling action heretofore described, and which is diagrammatically indicated in FIGS. 2 and 3. For example, such drum 22 may be rotated by the motor 96, which actuates a-speed reduction transmission 98, of any well-known construction, and which may be manually or automatically ad- 1jus table, so that it drives the rotatable shaft 100, which partly or wholly supports the drum 22 and drivingly rotates the same. The-shaft 100 may be rotated within the bearing 102, which is connected to the rear wall 104 of drum 20. i
The drum 20 may be provided with a front wall 106, having an opening 108 for insertion and removal of articles to be treated. I
The openings 36 and 108 of FIG. 5 may be provided with suitable sealing means and cover means, which are well known in the art, and which need not be specifically disclosed herein.
circulate completely around the interior of the curtain The inner edge 44A, FIG. 7, of the, curtain 38A may be provided with an opening which is coveredby a perforated wall 115, which may be a perforated plate or a wire mesh construction, which may be resiliently supported from the plate 30A by any spring construction 116, which permits the inner edge 44A to rise and fall slightly as desired. Openings 56A maybe provided, if desired, to correspond to openings 56 of the previous Figures, or they may be omitted.
The plate 30A may be supported by any suitable means from the end walls of the drum 22A. For example, the pipe 62A may be constructed to be supported from the end wall 32A of the drum 22A. A suitable rod 118 may extend from the plate 30A to the front end wall of the rotatable'drum 22A such front wall not being shown, but which may be otherwise similar to the front wall 34 ofFIG. 5,'except of smaller diameter, in corresponding fashion to rear wall 32A because of the slanting walls 109 and 110.
The outer drums 20 and 20A may be provided with a suitabledrain 120 at the bottommost part, which may be connected to a drain valve 122. This valve 122 may be solenoid operated to open and close at the proper time. The valve 122 may be connected to a water pump 124, the discharge portion 126 of which may be connected by a suitable flexible hose or the like to a drain or laundry tub, as is obvious.
In the operation .of FIG. 1, clothes may be introduced through the openings 36 and 108 and the various parts of theapparatus may be controlled by a suitable timer in the usual manner which controls the desired operation of the various parts of the machine. The timer may cause the drum 22 to be rotated at a slow speed, such that it allows the articles to be washed or cleaned to be caught by the baffle 68 and be accumulated at under the curtain 38, when the parts reach the lowermost position of FIG. 2. The curtain 38 contacts the top of a portion of the clothes 24 in some such manner as indicated by the dotted line 70 of FIG. 2, so that the compressed air from the pipes 66, 64, and 62 enters the lobes 54 of the curtain 38 and passes through the openings 56 into the cleaning chamber 58 from whence the air is forced through the clothes 24 and may pass out through openings 76 to the drum and out through the discharge pipe 78 to the exterior.
During the initial washing operation, no compressed air need be introduced into the curtain 38 and, the baffle 68 may lift and drop the clothes during the washing operation. On the other hand, if desired, air may be introduced into the curtain 38 during the washing operation and this will aid in the lifting and dropping of the clothes from and into the water at the bottom of the apparatus. The valve 122 is closed during this time.
The drain valve 122 may be opened, and the pump 124 operated, if necessary. The liquid is then drained from the tub 20. The tub 22 may be rotated or allowed to continue to rotate with the curtain 38 inflated by the compressed air. This action lifts and drops the clothes as indicated respectively by the FIGS. 2 and 3 so that different parts of the clothes are subjected to the compressed air from the curtain 38 repeatedly. The action can continue indefinitely to a complete drying of the clothes. The compressd air may be heated continuously, or only during the time of the evaporative drying of the clothes, when the switch 90 may be closed, to energize the heater 88 for the desired time, with or without automatic cycling by the thermostat 92.
Substantially the same action takes place in the embodiment of FIGS. 6 and 7, asis obvious. A feature in FIGS. 6 and 7 is that the clothes are concentrated at the central part during the dropping operation, because of the slanting sides 109 and 110. The curtain 38A may thus be smaller than the curtain 38, which will concentrate the action of the curtain 38A to a relatively small area.
The water pumps 124 of FIGS. 2, 3, 6 may be combined water and air circulators, as shown at 1124A in FIG. 8. Such circulator 124A discharges into a threeway valve 128 which may be solenoid and timer operated, if desired.
The three-way valve 128 may discharge into a drain through. pipe 130 to empty the tub 20. The valve 128 may discharge into pipe 132 which discharges through filter 134 and into heating chamber 86 of FIG. 1 and then into pipe 64 of FIG. 1 or 64A of FIG. 6, etc.
This permits water to be circulated through theclothes by the flexible curtain constructions 38, 38A, etc., during the washing action. It also permits air to be circulated through the clothes by the curtain constructions 38, 38A, etc., during the water, moisture and vapor extraction portions of the wash-dry operation.
If desired, valves 136 may be provided to by-pass the water through pipe 138 around the heating chamber, if desired. Such valves 136 may be solenoid and timer operated, if desired.
In FIG. 8, parts which generally correspond to previously described parts are shown with a suffix B instead of either no suffix or suffix A, as is obvious.
There is a stationary pipe 828, a longitudinally rotatable pipe 668 and a radially rotatable pipe 645.
The pipes 668 and 82B are supported in a stationary cylindrical block 140 which is supported on a pedestal 142.
The block 140 rotationally supports the rotatable sleeve 144 which rotationally supports the rotatable end wall 323 of the rotatable perforate drum 228.
The stationary cylindrical drum 20 has a stationary rear end wall 104B with a stationary sleeve 146 sur- 6 rounding the rotatable sleeve 14-4 and having a seal 148 between the end wall 10413 and sleeve 144. Another seal 150 may be provided between the rotatable sleeve 144 and stationary cylinder block 140.
A bolt 152 is fixed to the end wall 323 and has a rotatable ring 154 which loosely receives the pipe 648 so that the ring 154 causes the pipe 648 and pipe 628 to rotate about the pipe 66B as an axis 156. The drum 22B rotates about the axis 158 eccentrically to the rotation of the pipe 62B. When the pipe 62B has rotated to its uppermost position it will be farther away from the cylindrical wall 228, as illustrated in FIG. 11.
The pipe 628 may support a surface effect carrying member 160 with a flexible impervious surface effect curtain 162 which is closest to the drum 228 at one part of the revolution and farthest away at 180.
In FIG. 11, the pipe 668 may be at about from 30 to 45 away from the vertical plane 164 on the rising side of the drum 225 at approximately the lower right quadrant. The member 160 likewise is closest at from 30 to 45 from such vertical plane. Such member 160 will be farthest away from drum 223 at from 30 to 45 on the topmost position at plane 164, at approximately the upper left quadrant.
A longitudinal baffle 166 may be placed on the trailing side of curtain 162.
As the drum 22 rotates, the baffle 166 gathers an accumulation of clothes at its bottom part of rotation and carries them to be pressed under curtain 162 with pres-V sure air being applied to and through the clothes at the lower right quadrant. The curtain 162 will be removed from the clothes at .theupper left quadrant sufficiently to release the clothes to allow them to fall and redistribute themselves before they are again gathered up by the baffle 166 near the bottom of rotation and then pressed by the curtain 162 at the lower right quadrant.
If desired, the pipe 62B may carry the member 160 somewhat as is done in FIG. 6 at 30A with another support member 118B at left end of FIG. 9.
The support member 1188 may be received in a stationary bearing member 168 in the inward flange 170 which also forms the clothes receiving opening 172.
The drum 22B may have an outward flange 173 which rotates about the inward flange 170 to complete the clothes receiving opening.
A bolt 174 and loose ring 176 may have a similar action on support 118 that is produced by bolt 152 and ring 154 on pipe 648 at the right end of FIG. 9.
What is claimed isi 1. Apparatus for treating porous material comprising movable engaging means for engaging said material and at least assisting in the moving of the same in said apparatus, movable flexible wall means carried by said apparatus and having at least a part thereof provided with a plurality of opening means passing therethrough, means for causing said material to have a section thereof disposed between at least said part of said wall means and said engaging means to move in unison with said part of said wall means and said engaging means, means forcausing said opening means of said part of said wall means to be disposed in substantially sealed relation with said section of material, said means for causing said opening means to be disposed in sealed relation also causing a direct fluid flow between said opening means of said part-of said wall means and said section of material aligned between said opening means of said part of said wall means and said engaging means to treat said section of material with said fluid, said means'for causing said opening means of said part of said wall means to be disposed in said substantially sealed relation with said section of material comprising means for creating a pressure differential across said wall means to cause one side of said part of said wall means to tend to press against said material and thereby press said material against said engaging means, said means for creating said pressure differential across said wall means and for causing said direct fluid flow comprising means for directing fluid under pressure against the other side of said part of said wall means so that'said fluid pressure causes said part of said wall means to press against said material and causes said fluid to pass through said opening means into said material, and means for heating said fluid before the same is directed to said other side of said part of saidwall means. v
2. A method for treating porous material comprising the steps of providing an engaging means for engaging said material to at least assist in moving said material, causing said material to have a section thereof disposed between at least a part of a flexible wall means and said engaging means to move in unison with said part of said wall means and said engaging means, moving said part of said wall means to be disposed in substantially sealed relation with said section of material, forming said wall means with a plurality I of opening means passing through said part thereof, said step of moving said part of said wall means also includes the step of creating a direct fluid flow between a plurality of opening means in said part of said wall means and said section of material aligned between said opening means and said engaging means to treat said section of material with said fluid, said step of moving said part of said wall means to be disposed in substantially sealed relation with said section of material comprising-the step of creating a pressure differential across said part of said wall means to cause one side of said part of said wall means to tend to press against said material and thereby press said material against said engaging means, said steps for creating said pressure differential across said wall means and for causing said direct fluid flow comprising the step of directing fluid under pressure against the other side of said part of said wall means so that said fluid pressure causes said part of said wall means to press against said material and causes said fluid to pass through said opening means into said material, and heating said fluid before said fluid is directed to said other side of said part of said wall means.