US 3826408 A
A portable apparatus comprising a laundry liquid dispenser used in connection with a washing machine delivering by gravity laundry liquids in controlled amounts to a washing machine comprising means for automatically dispensing said laundry liquids in a predetermined order and controlling the quantity of each of said laundry liquids delivered to said washing machine and controlling the interval of time between the passage of each of said laundry liquids to said washing machine and means substituting a manual operation.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent i191 Berndt et al. i
GRAVITY FLOW PORTABLE LAUNDRY LIQUID DISPENSER Inventors: Alvin W. Berndt, 613 l 11th Ave., Minneapolis, Minn. 55434; Alex Freyberger, 936`Parker Ave., Roseville, Minn. 55113 Filed: June 29, 1973 Appl. No.: 374,916
U.S. Cl 222/70, 68/17 R, 222/181 Int. Cl. D06f 29/00 Field of Search 222/70, 132, |81; 68/17 R;
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 7/1959 Federighi 222/181 2/1964 Noakes ..A..' ..222/70X `[111 3,826,408 [451 July 30, 1974 3,336,767 8/1967 MacKenzie 68/17 R 3,349,965 10/1967 Krugger 222/105 X 3,381,699 5/1968 Coffman 222/70 Primary Examiner-Stanley H. Tollberg n Assistant Examiner-Thomas E. Kocovsky Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Leo Gregory  ABSTRACT A portable apparatus comprising a laundry liquid dispenser used in connection with a washing machine delivering by gravity laundry liquids in controlled amounts to a washing machine comprising means for automatically dispensing said laundry liquids in a predetermined order and controlling the quantity of each of said laundry liquids delivered to said washing machine and controlling the interval of time between the passage of each of said laundry liquids to said washing machine and means substituting a manual operation.
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GRAVITY FLOW PORTABLE LAUNDRY LIQUID DISPENSER SUMMARY AND BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION y There are a number of devices in the art which deliver laundry liquids to a commercial type washing machine. Much of the apparatus presently used requires substantial and complex installation and requires the use of trained personnel.
The invention herein relates to a relatively simple piece of apparatus which may be mounted for operation at one side of a washing machine having a line passing into the washing tub of said machine and having mounted thereon for direct gravity feed into the washing machine a plurality of containers of laundry liquids, and an automatically operated timing device controlling the passage of said laundry liquids into said washing machine. The apparatus herein requires no trained personnel for its operation.
In related art, the U.S. Pat. No. 3,336,767 to F. H. MacKenzie, et al, discloses a system for supplying laundry chemicals to a measuringl tank with electrodes being used to determine the level of various liquids in the supply tank and pressure isused to evacuate the supply tank.
The U.S. Pat. No. 3,043,478 to L. V'. Adams, et al, shows a reservoir and pump with a ratchet wheel coded to the revolutions of the pump shaft for operation of a shut off switch. Pumping action is used from the reservoir to the washing machine.
The U.S. Pat. No. 3,044,285 to H. Koplin shows an arrangement of containers from supply drums to supply tanks and thence to a mixing tank for each washing-machine. This is a large commercial installation.
The U.S. Pat. No. 3,133,673 to B. A. Buss discloses the use of a plurality of buckets containing laundry liquids and the buckets are caused to overflow to dispense the liquids therein through a common passage to the washing machine.
It is an object of this invention to provide a readily portable laundry liquid dispensing apparatus or dispenser which may be removably mounted on a commercial type of laundry washing machine.
It is another object of this invention to have a device for dispensing laundry liquids into a washing machine, said device having separate containers for each of the laundry liquids used, said containers being adapted to dispense the laundry liquids therein to the washing machine by gravity flow.
It is also an object herein to have the containers of laundry liquids readily replaceable and retained in conveniently handled frame holders mounted on the device.
It is another object of this invention to have a laundry liquid dispenser as above indicated embodying a timing device controlling the quantity of each of the laundry liquids dispensed into a washing machine and controlling the interval of time between the passage of each of said laundry liquids into said washing machine.
It is a further object with reference to the object above set forth to provide manual control means to alter the relative quantities of the laundry liquids dispensed into a washing machine.
These and other objects and advantages ofthe invention will be set forth in the following description made 2` in connection with the accompanying drawings in which like reference characters refer to similar parts throughout the several views and in which:
FIG. 1 is a fragmentary view of the apparatus herein in end elevation in an operating position;
FIG. 2 is a view in rear elevation with a portion thereof being broken away;
FIG. 3 is a view in end elevation and partially in vertical section on an enlarged scale taken on line 3-3 of FIG. 2 as indicated;
FIG. 4 is a view in front elevation of a panel with a related structure being broken away;
F IG. 5 is a view in perspective of a detail of structure on enlarged scale with a portion thereof being broken away;
FIG. 6 is a broken view' in vertical section on an enlarged scale taken on line 6-6 of FIG. 2 as indicated, showing the electrical system panel which is partially diagramatic;
FIG. 6A is a broken view in elevation showing a detail of a switch and disc operating member;
FIG. 7 is a broken view in front elevation on an enlarged scale showing a modification of a detail of structure;
FIG. 8 is a broken view in horizontal section taken on line 8-8 of FIG. 7 as indicated;
FIG. 9 is a view similar to FIG. 7 in side elevation; andl FIG. l0 shows a schematic wiring diagram.
` DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the drawings, a commercial type of washing machine 10 is indicated and is shown comprising a front wall l2, side walls 14 and 15, a rear wall 17 with said side wall 14 having-an opening 19 thereinleading to the washing tub 20 and forming a top for said washing machine is a hinged lid 21. Hereinafter reference to said washing machine will be understood to embody said washing tub 20.
Mounted on said washing machine is the apparatus 22 representing the subject matter of the invention herein comprising a laundry liquid dispensing apparatus.
Said apparatus 22 consists of a housing 23 substantially parallelepiped in form having a chamber 23a therein and comprising a top wall 24, a bottom wall 2S, end walls 26 and 27, a front wall 28 and a rear wall 29. A removable access plate member is provided for the bottom wall but is not here shown.
Mounted onto said housing 23 and upstanding therefrom are a plurality of frame container holding members 30-33 which will hereinafter be referred to as holders and of which the holder 30 in the embodiment here presented will be described as representative of all.
Referring to FIG. 5, said holder 30 is pivotally supported by a pair of spaced angled plate or bracket members 37 and 38 upstanding from said upper or top wall 24 of said housing and being appropriately secured thereto as with the use of metal screws. Said bracket members are common to all of said holders.
Said holder 30 consists of a pair of upstanding leg portions 40 and 42 having inwardly angled lower end portions 43 and 44 disposed through accommodating apertures 46 and 47 in said bracket members 37 and 38 for pivotal connection therewith. Said leg portions 42 and 44 have upper right angled portions 49 and 50 diverging from one another and having downwardly angled portions 52 and 53 which at their lower ends have inwardly angled portions 55 and 56 which in turn have rearwardly extended portions 58 and 59 which are joined by a rear cross member A60. Said cross member is welded to the members 40 and 42 at its points Aof engagement therewith as shown in FIG. 5. Said portions 52 and 53 have offset shoulders 52a and 53a as shown formed adjacent their lower ends.
An upstanding U-shaped member 63 is welded at its free ends 64 and 65 to the adjacent portions of said Y members 55 and 56 to provide a standing support ers 30-33 are rigid cartons 80-83 respectively having i collapsible liquid containers such as 80a therein held inverted in operatingposition with the neck portions of said collapsible containers depending from said cartons as illustrated with the snap-on closure or cap members such as 80h thereon having conduits or lines 85-88 running therefrom to goose neck or elbow fittings 90-93 carried by saidhousing 23 and which will be further described. A laundry liquid 80C is indicated in the container 80a. Each container will have an appropriate laundry liquid as required for a washing cycle.
The liquid containers as indicated in FIGS. 1 and 3 are of a type in being collapsible which will permit the liquids therein to flow out under the influence of gravity with no venting being required. The containers automatically collapse as liquids flow or pass out therefrom.
' Secured to the end wall 27 of said housing 23 is a control box 96 having a hinged lid 97 having control switches thereon which will be described and having mounted on the inner wall 98 thereof a wiring panel 99 and the operating mechanism in connection therewith which will be hereinafter described.
Said fittings 90-93 respectively provide passage for to the embodiment herein the relative speed of shaft portion 1l7a to l17b will be on the order of l() to I. The relative speed is a matter of design.
, Carried by each of said `disc switches are a pair of switch actuating cam members142 which respectively activate the micro-switches 150-158. For convenience, all of said cam members are indicated by like reference numerals and the same are conventionally mounted on said disc members for circumferential adjustment of placement of position thereabout. The spacing between each pair of cams on each of said disc members will determine the operating interval of time for said microswitches as will be hereinafter described.
Carried on said cover 97 is the main ON-OF F switch 160 and a momentary switch 161. ln circuit respectively with said solenoid valves 101-104 are operating switches 171-174 which are normally in automatic operating position, but are operable to be in OFF position or to be held in INJECT position to override the automatic cyclical time interval for each of said solenoid valves 101-104 to permit a greater flow of a laundry liquid therethrough.
Said wiring system also includes a relay coil 162 having contacts 162e and a terminal board 163. A line 181 is plugged into the receptacle 182 to bring power to the l apparatus from a suitable power supply. The specific said lines 85-88 toand through conventional solenoid valves 101-104 connected thereto and said lines 85-88 in effect continue through said valves to said washing machine through the opening 19. Said valves are operated to permit the gravity flow of liquid through said lines to the washing machine.
Said fittings 90-93 have secured thereto said solenoid valves at the inner side of the upper wall 24 by U- brackets 109 as shown in FIG. 6.
Mounted onto the inner side 98 of said lid 97 comprising the wiring or operating panel is the electrical system 112 of the apparatus.
Said electrical system consists of a timer motor 115 having a cam micro-switch operating shaft 117 journaled within a frame 119 and carrying thereon for rotation therewith is a conventional type of switch assembly comprising switch operating disc members 12S-133.
Said shaft is a split shaft having its portion 1l7a in direct drive with said motor 115 and its portion l17b geared down by a gear train 140 whereby with respect circuits of the present embodiment are shown in the schematic wiring diagram of FIG. 10 and are described in connection therewith.
Said wiring diagram of FIG. l0 will now be described in connection with FIGS. 4 and 6.
The switch 160 is closed to energize the system. Lines A and B are hot lines. The momentary switch 161 is depressed or closed to energize the relay coil 162 through the lines C-D and the double pole double throw switch 158 which normally has its contact 158a in circuit with said lines. The reIay contacts l62a are thus energized to momentarily close the circuit E-I-F and energize the timer motor which rotates the cam shaft 117 and the switch operating members carried thereby.
The disc switch operating member 133 actuates the switch 158 to break the circuit with said relay coil and to close the circuit G-C-I-F to energize the timer motor. This circuit remains closed until a cycle of operation has been completed at which time the disc member 133 again actuates the switch 158 to break said circuit and stop the operation of the timer motor. Thus the system operation is stopped. The circuit C-D is now ready to be energized by the next operation of the switch 161 in another complete cycle of operation.
With the timer motor operating, each of the disc members 12S-133 rotate and their respective switch actuating operations are determined by the spaced relation of the respective pairs of adjustable cams thereon for respectively engaging the micro-switches 1511-158.
The disc members 129-132 are arranged to permit the solenoid valves 101-104 to be energized in sequence as to correspond to the phases of a washing cycle and the disc members -128 determine the length of time that each solenoid valve will be energized to open the respective lines 85-88 for the laundry liquids to pass into the washing machine. By way of example, the disc member 129 will close the switch 151 in circuit with solenoid valve 101 and this circuit becomes closed and the solenoid becomes energized when the disc member 125 closes the micro-switch 150. Each disc. member, as described, has a pair of switch actuating cams. The first cam to engage the switch will close its contacts and the second cam upon engaging the switch will break its contacts. Thus the time interval between the engagement of said switch by said respective cams determines the length of time that a laundry liquid passes into the washing machine or in other words, this determines the quantity of laundry liquid which passes into the washing machine.
lt will be noted that the micro-switches 150-2-4-6 are in series with the micro-switches 151-3-5-7 to complete circuits through the switches l7l-174 and include the solenoid valves lOl-104.
The switches 171-174 may be actuated manually to override the automatic operation above described in order to permit any given laundry liquid to be provided in a larger quantity than through automatic operation. This may be required from time to time. The switches 171-174 selectively may be put in OFF position.
The lid 97 has a latch 180.
OPERATION The operation of the apparatus herein is believed to be clearly understandable from the description given above, particularly in connection with the wiring diagram.
The rigid containers 80-83 are readily positioned in the holders 30-33 as illustrated. Each rigid container has a self-collapsible container therein of a laundry liquid.
ln a normal washing operation, the first container will have a laundry liquid to reduce alkali, the second container will have a detergent to put soil into suspension, the third container will have a bleach and the'fourth container will have a neutralizer and a softener. This particular arrangement is merely for illustration.
The novel use of the collapsible inner container permits a gravity flow of laundry liquid out of each such container into the washing machine. A gravity flow of a laundry liquid into a washing machine represents a novel arrangement in view of the known art.
The operation of the solenoid valves 101-104 permits the respective laundry liquids to flow into the washing machine through an automatic time arrangement. lf it is desirable to increase the amount of any given laundry liquid into the wash, the operator merely manually actuates the appropriate switch 171-174 to inject a larger quantity than otherwise of laundry liquid into any given phase ofthe wash cycle. Thus the operator may readily override the automatic operation.
The apparatus is portable being readily mounted by hanging brackets on to the side of a washing machine and the lines carrying the laundry liquids are dropped into the washing tub.
The replacement of laundry liquids is very simply accomplished by swinging one of the holders 30-33 as shown in FIG. 3, removing the snap-on cap 80b, removing the old rigid and collapsible containers therein and substituting the new one. The cap 80b is merely snapped into position on the new container and the holder is swung upwardly into operating position resting on the housing 23.
MODIFICATION Referring to FIGS. 7-9, a modification is shown which is a simplification of the frame container holding members 30-33 as illustrated by the representative container holding member 200.
Said member 200 comprises a bail member having a top frame member 201 having from each end thereof side portions 203-204 kangled downwardly therefrom each having lower end portions 205-206 angled inwardly at right angles and downwardly and having depending portions 207-208 having inwardly angled lower end portions 210-211 disposed into and pivotally supported by a pair of said plate brackets 37-38.
A hook member 213 is secured to said side portions 203-204 adjacent their upper ends and extending therebetween is a resilient or elastic member 215 shown here as a coil spring.
Extending between the upper ends of said depending portions 207-208 is a shallow U-shaped support 216 secured as by welding and forming an inward shelf as shown in FIG. 9.
In place of the individual support members 63 is a support member 224 which comprises a bar 225 having a length sufficient to support all of the container holding members 200 by having the leading lower end portionsof the containers rest thereon as shown in FIG. 9. Said bar 224 has leg portions 225-226 upstanding from the upper wall 24 of the housing 23 and being secured thereto as by welding.
The use and operation of the above holders is believed apparent from the description.
The apparatus has been very successful in use particularly because of its portability, that it is readily installed by merely hooking onto the side of a washing machine, that no trained operator is required and laundry liquids are readily installed for use.
It will of course be understood that various changes may be made in form, details, arrangement and proportions of the parts without departing from the scope of the invention herein which, generally stated, consists in an apparatus capable of carrying out the objects above set forth, in the parts and combinations of parts disclosed and defined in the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
l. A laundry liquid dispenser having in combination a portable housing,
a plurality of holders carried by said housing,
a container of laundry liquid removably disposed in each of said holders, s aid containers passing said liquid therefrom by gravity,
a line passing said liquid from each of said containers,
a first means comprising solenoid valves carried in said housing controlling the passage of said liquid through said lines,
micro-switches respectively in circuit with said solenoid valves,
a second means regulating said first means controlling the quantity of liquid passing through said lines from each of said containers,
a third means regulating said first means as to the sei quential intervals of time of said passage of said liquids through said lines from each of` said containers,
said holder comprises a wire frame member,
means carried by said housing pivotally securing said holder thereto, and
means carried by said holder reieasably securing said container therein.
3. The structure set forth in claim 1, including means manually overriding said second means.
4. The structure set forth in claim 1, including means manually operable to de-energize microswitches with respect to any selected one of said solenoid valves.