|Publication number||USRE34551 E|
|Application number||US 07/886,230|
|Publication date||Feb 22, 1994|
|Filing date||May 21, 1992|
|Priority date||Jan 9, 1989|
|Also published as||US4927324|
|Publication number||07886230, 886230, US RE34551 E, US RE34551E, US-E-RE34551, USRE34551 E, USRE34551E|
|Inventors||Michael C. Coup, Gary P. Israel, Glen W. Ediger, Donald J. Moore|
|Original Assignee||Vornado Air Circulation Systems, Inc.|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (16), Referenced by (14), Classifications (11), Legal Events (5)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
The present invention is an improved design of the ducted fan set forth in U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,554,602, 2,554,600 and 2,554,601.
The general concept of providing ducted fans with a multiplicity of concentrically spaced cone-shaped ducts in their intakes to increase the air output of the fan has been well known for many decades as typified in U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,287,822 and 2,330,907. Having a ducted fan with multiple cones co-axially spaced in telescoping relation not only provides an increased output at a given power use but also functions as a safety grill in conjunction with the connecting ribs. The outer cowling also can function as a bumper housing to deflect and absorb energy when the fan falls or impacts a stationary object.
All of the above-mentioned patents illustrate fans which could not be sold today by reason of the large grill openings on the front and back of the fans. Current OSHA requirements require consumer fans to have grills with a maximum lateral opening of one-half inch.
It is therefore the principal object of the present invention to provide a new and improved front grill and duct structure which increases the fan's capacity and efficiency while decreasing its sound over the prior art grills or no grills at all.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a new and improved ducted fan wherein the front grill and the inner cowling are integral and are easily removable by deflecting four separate tabs positioned around the periphery of the outer cowling.
Another object of the invention is to provide a new and improved single leg support for the fan which allows the fan to pivotally turn on the support while a preloaded spring counteracts the offset weight of the fan and retains it in place. The support leg also is a conduit for the wires which supply the motor.
Further advantages and features of the invention are set forth in the following detailed description and accompanying drawings which embody the present invention.
FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of the fan in longitudinal section;
FIG. 2 is a front view of the fan normal to the grill;
FIG. 3 is a front perspective view of the fan;
FIG. 4 is a rear perspective view of the fan;
FIG. 5 is a partial plan view of the fan grill to an enlarged scale;
FIG. 6 is a sectional view to an enlarged scale taken along line 6--6 of FIG. 5;
FIG. 7 is a partial sectional view to an enlarged scale of the inner and outer cowling;
FIG. 8 is a sectional view to an enlarged scale taken along line 8--8 of FIG. 9; and
FIG. 9 is a plan view of the fan base and its support leg with the cover plate removed.
The drawings illustrate a ducted blade-type fan which is generally referred to by reference numeral 10. The fan 10 is mounted on a tubular support leg 12. The leg 12 includes a curved floor-engaging portion 14 and a short horizontal mounting portion 16 to which the fan base 32 is rotatably attached. Support leg 2 is fabricated from steel tubing and bent to its particular shape by commonly-known tube-bending techniques. Support leg 12 also functions as a conduit for the electrical wires 18 from motor 20 which enter leg 12 at its upper end, as seen in FIG. 9, and exit the leg 2 at its lower end 22.
Fan motor 20 carries an impeller blade 24 on its drive shaft which includes three blades 26, 28 and 30. Fan motor 20 is concentrically bolted to base member 32 by four bolts 34. Base member 32 is a plastic injection molded part formed at the same time with duct 62 and outer cowling 68, later described in detail. Formed on base 32 are a series of motor-mounting pads 36. Attaching the support leg 12 to the fan base 32 are a pair of u-shaped straps 38 which urge leg portion 16 against an arcuate-shaped saddle 40 molded in base member 32, as best seen in FIG. 8.
Positioned around leg portion 16, as seen in FIGS. 8 and 9, is a coil spring 42 having straight end sections 44 and 46. End section 44 is restrained from movement around the support leg by a small offset tab 48 which is spotwelded to tube 16. The amount of rotating friction between tube 16, saddle 40, and the straps 38 can be determined by tightening nuts 50 on bolts 34. Coil spring 42 when installed, has a preload force acting on motor 20, as best seen in FIG. 8, which urges the motor in a clockwise direction. This preload from spring 42 will offset the weight-created moment from the fan and its ducts attempting to rotate the fan 10 in a counterclockwise direction, as seen in FIG. 1. Also positioned on bolts 34 are a pair of rubber mounts 52 which have the ends of mounting straps 38 sandwiched therebetween.
Base member 32 includes a peripheral ridge 54 which supports a cover plate 56. The cover plate has a matching retention groove 58 around its inside diameter which allows it to be snapped to the base member 32. Cover plate 56 has an circulate opening 60 therein, as seen in FIG. 8, permitting the support leg 12 to pass through.
Formed with base 32 is a funnel-shaped duct 62, as best seen in FIG. 1, which connects through a series of radially extending ribs 64, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 4. Duct 62 is tapered outward at its inlet end 66 to a diameter substantially increasing its cross sectional area.
The outer cowling 68 is also formed with duct 62 and is connected to duct 62 by a second series of ribs 70, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 4, which have a similar lateral spacing, as previously-mentioned ribs 64. Base member 32, duct 62 and outer cowling 68 are all molded in a single piece through joining ribs 64 and 70.
Removably positioned within outer cowling 68 is an inner cowling 72 which is also funnel-shaped from its larger intake end 74 to its smaller discharge end 76. Most of the axial length of cowling 68 is a constant diameter similar to discharge end 76.
Attached to the discharge end 76 is a circular grill 80. Inner cowling 72 is held in place by a series of four tabs 78, as seen in FIG. 7, which are positioned quadrantally around the periphery of the intake end 74 of the cowling. Tabs 78 have hook-shaped ends which, when fully inserted within the outer cowling 68, will engage the edge of outlet cowling 68. These four tabs 78 can be deflected inwardly individually by finger pressure, allowing the grill and inner cowling to separate from the fan structure so as to provide the necessary access to the interior of the fan. The remote posititoning of the four tabs requires at least two separate hand operations which is also a current safety requirement for fan design.
Grill 80 includes a small center hub 82 and a series of arcuate-shaped ribs 84 extending inwardly from the hub, curving to the left, as seen in FIGS. 2 and 5, to the outer radius 86 of the grill. The center of curvature point for each rib 84 lies on a circle 88, as shown in FIG. 5, the radius of curvature of ribs 84 is approximately two-thirds the outer radius of the overall grill. The circle 88 includes a locus of points for the center of curvature of each rib 84 and has a radius approximately one-half the outer radius 86 of the grill. The radius of hub 82 is approximately one-fifth (1/5) the outer radius 86 of the grill. The maximum lateral spacing between any pair of ribs 84 is inwardly from the outer radius 86 of the grill at a point approximate dimension X, as shown in FIG. 5. The impeller blade's point of maximum power is located at approximately 0.6 times its radius. This places the maximum power in a region of the grill wherein the rib spacing is at its maximum. The longer length curved ribs 84, as compared with a conventional straight rib, provides a less rigid grill structure which can be desirable under certain circumstances such as impact shocks.
In viewing FIG. 5, the fan blades not shown move in a clockwise direction from left to right, while the grill ribs 84 curve to the left from the center in the opposite direction which provides an optimum flow of air at a standard power usage.
FIG. 6 shows a lateral cross section of a rib 84 with the upstream edge 90 being curved with the remainder of the rib slightly tapered in the overall shape of an airfoil.
Outer cowling 68 is convex in shape with a curve leading edge 92 which together with inner cowling 72 forms the cross sectional shape of an airfoil which minimizes the amount of turbulence and drag produced at the leading edge.
A conventional switch and rheostat for controlling the fan can be located any place on wire 18 either remote of the support leg 12 or preferably at the end 22.
Located between inner cowling 72 and outer cowling 68 is an annular opening 94 which provides a handle for lifting the fan.
|Cited Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US1062258 *||Jul 7, 1911||May 20, 1913||Georg Arthur Schlotter||Propeller.|
|US2100994 *||Feb 6, 1936||Nov 30, 1937||Casco Products Corp||Fan guard|
|US2154313 *||Apr 1, 1938||Apr 11, 1939||Gen Electric||Directing vane|
|US2169232 *||Apr 8, 1939||Aug 15, 1939||Westinghouse Electric & Mfg Co||Blower apparatus|
|US2287822 *||Jul 26, 1940||Jun 30, 1942||Barney Crawford H||Blower|
|US2330907 *||Sep 10, 1938||Oct 5, 1943||Barney Crawford H||Aerodynamic device|
|US2554600 *||Oct 10, 1949||May 29, 1951||O A Sutton Corp Inc||Mounting yoke for fans or similar appliances|
|US2554601 *||Oct 10, 1949||May 29, 1951||O A Sutton Corp Inc||Mounting means for guard grilles of fans or similar appliances|
|US2554602 *||Oct 10, 1949||May 29, 1951||O A Sutton Corp Inc||Cowl for fans|
|US2652974 *||May 15, 1950||Sep 22, 1953||Fettel Martin G||Electric fan|
|US3173478 *||Jan 16, 1962||Mar 16, 1965||Othmar F Maycen||Air distributing unit|
|US3620644 *||Jul 6, 1970||Nov 16, 1971||Mclarty Gordon||Universal fan mount and fan|
|US3883264 *||Apr 8, 1971||May 13, 1975||Gadicherla V R Rao||Quiet fan with non-radial elements|
|US4140433 *||May 18, 1977||Feb 20, 1979||Eckel Oliver C||Wind turbine|
|US4189281 *||Dec 20, 1977||Feb 19, 1980||Kabushiki Kaisha Toyota Chuo Kenkyusho||Axial flow fan having auxiliary blades|
|US4657483 *||Nov 16, 1984||Apr 14, 1987||Bede James D||Shrouded household fan|
|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US5795133 *||Dec 9, 1996||Aug 18, 1998||Emerson Electric Co.||Hinged fan guard with snap fit|
|US6283709||Nov 2, 1998||Sep 4, 2001||Emerson Electric Co.||Variable position fan assembly|
|US6293755 *||Jan 24, 2000||Sep 25, 2001||Chiac Fu||Electric fan adjustable support|
|US6364618||Feb 3, 2000||Apr 2, 2002||Lakewood Engineering & Mfg. Co.||Fan body assembly|
|US6378322||Feb 28, 2001||Apr 30, 2002||General Shelters Of Texas S.B., Ltd.||High-performance molded fan|
|US6481233||Mar 12, 2002||Nov 19, 2002||General Shelters Of Texas, S.B., Ltd.||High-performance molded fan|
|US6692231||Feb 28, 2001||Feb 17, 2004||General Shelters Of Texas S.B., Ltd.||Molded fan having repositionable blades|
|US7007403||Sep 27, 2004||Mar 7, 2006||Roy Studebaker||Shrouded floor drying fan|
|US7201563||Sep 27, 2004||Apr 10, 2007||Studebaker Enterprises, Inc.||Louvered fan grille for a shrouded floor drying fan|
|US7238006||Sep 27, 2004||Jul 3, 2007||Studebaker Enterprises, Inc.||Multiple impeller fan for a shrouded floor drying fan|
|US7530783||Oct 28, 2005||May 12, 2009||Vornado Air Circulation Systems, Inc.||Grill mounting and retaining assembly|
|US7971369||Feb 28, 2006||Jul 5, 2011||Roy Studebaker||Shrouded floor drying fan|
|US20060067812 *||Sep 27, 2004||Mar 30, 2006||Roy Studebaker||Louvered fan grille for a shrouded floor drying fan|
|US20080101933 *||Oct 17, 2006||May 1, 2008||Inventec Corporation||Airflow generating apparatus|
|U.S. Classification||415/121.2, 415/211.2, 416/63, 416/247.00R, 415/181|
|International Classification||F04D29/70, F04D25/08|
|Cooperative Classification||F04D25/08, F04D29/703|
|European Classification||F04D29/70C2, F04D25/08|
|Jan 10, 1994||REMI||Maintenance fee reminder mailed|
|May 17, 1994||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: MERCANTILE BANK OF KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:VORNADO AIR CICULATION SYSTEMS, INC.;REEL/FRAME:006994/0507
Effective date: 19940429
|Oct 20, 1997||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8
|Aug 27, 2001||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 12
|Jan 5, 2007||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: VORNADO AIR, LLC F/K/A KANSAS AIR HOLDINGS, LLC, K
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:VORNADO AIR CIRCULATION SYSTEMS, INC.;REEL/FRAME:018711/0400
Effective date: 20061222