GB2155313A - Apparatus for washing cutlery - Google Patents

Apparatus for washing cutlery Download PDF

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Publication number
GB2155313A
GB2155313A GB08406131A GB8406131A GB2155313A GB 2155313 A GB2155313 A GB 2155313A GB 08406131 A GB08406131 A GB 08406131A GB 8406131 A GB8406131 A GB 8406131A GB 2155313 A GB2155313 A GB 2155313A
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GB
United Kingdom
Prior art keywords
flatware
cup
means
pieces
washing apparatus
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Granted
Application number
GB08406131A
Other versions
GB2155313B (en
GB8406131D0 (en
Inventor
Donald E Roberts
Original Assignee
Donald E Roberts
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Application filed by Donald E Roberts filed Critical Donald E Roberts
Priority to GB08406131A priority Critical patent/GB2155313B/en
Publication of GB8406131D0 publication Critical patent/GB8406131D0/en
Publication of GB2155313A publication Critical patent/GB2155313A/en
Priority claimed from GB08721731A external-priority patent/GB2198931B/en
Application granted granted Critical
Publication of GB2155313B publication Critical patent/GB2155313B/en
Expired legal-status Critical Current

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Classifications

    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47LDOMESTIC WASHING OR CLEANING; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47L15/00Washing or rinsing machines for crockery or tableware
    • A47L15/26Washing or rinsing machines for crockery or tableware with movement of the crockery baskets by other means
    • A47L15/30Washing or rinsing machines for crockery or tableware with movement of the crockery baskets by other means by rotating only

Abstract

A machine for washing cutlery comprises an inclined cup (58) mounted for rotation about its own axis to cause cascading of the cutlery and overhead spray units (88), for spraying the cutlery with wash and rinse liquids. Air may be blown onto the washed cutlery to dry it. A raisable platform may be located within the cup. The cup may be rotated by roller (70) driven via gearing (78), (80). In a modification, the cup is rotated about its axis by a rotatable shaft which keys with the base of the cup (Figures 4, 5). <IMAGE>

Description

SPECIFICATION Washing machine This invention relates generally to equipment for use in the restaurant and food service industry and more particularly to apparatus for washing items of reusable flatware utensils such as forks, knives and spoons.

It is common practice in the food service industry to shock or bunch knives, forks and spoons in the handles-down mode in tall, perforated plastic cups after soaking and removal of the gross food accumulations. Thereafter, the cups of flatware are processed through a conventional dishwashing machine in an effort to complete the cleaning.

However, individual pieces of flatware tend to mask adjacent pieces in the shock, preventing the high-pressure washing and rinsing sprays from reaching many surfaces that have been contaminated with smears of food or with substances from the user's mouth. Spoons are particularly susceptible to undesirable nesting, and the inside edges of fork tines constitute a comparatively inaccessible residence of potential contamination.

Moreover, the high-pressure wash sprays of conventional tablewarewashing equipment, being directed generally axially of the pieces of shocked flatware tend to "lock" undesirably nested pieces in that configuration, thus thoroughly frustrating complete cleansing. In addition, research has brought out that freshly washed hospital flatware oftentimes harbours a sufficiently vigorous and varied flora of micro-organisms to cause nosocomial infections. Restaurant flatware poses a somewhat similar source of contagion.

The present invention overcomes the limitations of the prior art by arranging a flatware washing machine to impart a churning motion of the flatware items shocked in the perforated cups or holders in order to maximize the exposure of the flatware surfaces to washing and rinsing sprays and to drying air.

Broadly stated the invention consists in flatware washing apparatus comprising processing means for supporting a flatware-holding cup at an angle inclined from the horizontal and for rotating said cup about its own individual axis to cause the flatware pieces to cascade freely under the influence of gravity, and spray means for directing jets of washing fluid into the path of the cascading flatware pieces generally downhill from the apogee of their orbiting transit.

In one form of the invention, cascading motion is imparted to the flatware utensils. As a supplement or as an alternative, means may be provided for selectively lifting the flatware pieces in the cup in order to fully expose the food-contact surfaces thereof to the washing action.

The invention may be performed in various different ways and two specific embodiments will now be described by way of example with reference to the accompanying drawings wherein: Figure 1 is a perspective view of flatware washing apparatus constructed in compliance with the invention; Figure 2 is an enlarged, side elevational view taken in cross-section through the washing chamber of the apparatus of Fig. 1 to show both the angle of inclination of the cup-supporting platform and the flatware holder drive arrangements; Figure 3 is a perspective view on a reduced scale, taken along the line 3-3 of Fig. 2 and showing the position of the wash and rinse sprays relative to the direction of rotation of the holder and its supporting platform;; Figure 4 is a central sectional view showing a modified cup holder which incorporates a lifter insert, the lifter insert being shown in its retracted position; Figure 5 is a view similar to the showing of Fig.

4 but illustrating the lifter insert in its elevated position for exposing the food-contact surfaces of the flatware utensils to the jets of washing fluids; and Figure 6 is top plan view taken substantially along the line 6-6 of Fig. 5.

Referring now to the first embodiment illustrated in Figures 1-3 of the drawings, the flatware washing apparatus is indicated generally by the reference numeral 10, and comprises a cabinet or housing 12 which encloses a flatware washing chamber 14, a washwater storage chamber 16 and a mechanical equipment chamber 18, the chambers 14, 16 and 18 being vertically stacked in order to minimise the floorspace requirements of the apparatus. Access to the washing chamber 14 is made through a loading door 20 which is swingably mounted on hinges 22 and which is provided with a handle 24 for facility in usage. Inlet water for use in rinsing and in mixing with sanitising materials in the tank of chamber 16 enters through a conduit or (line 26; and a stationary standpipe 28 is arranged to maintain a preselected liquid level in chamber 16, the standpipe 28 draining directly to a sewer line 30.Standpipe 28 also serves to skim scum from the surface of the washing liquid in chamber 16; and advantageously, a slideably removable screen drawer 32 is interposed between chambers 14 and 16 to serve as a baffle and in order to collect gross effluvia accidentally included with the flatware being sanitised in chamber 14.

A recirculation pump 34 draws wash liquid from the chamber 16 through an inlet line 36 and delivers it at a boosted pressure to the wash spray or sprays through a recirculation line 38. The pump 34 is driven by an electrically-operated motor 40 and receives inlet washing fluid from the line 36 through a valve 42 which is manually regulated by a handle, not shown, attached to a shaft 44.

A starter button 46 is provided for selectively electrically energizing the motor 40 and the other electrically energized devices in the apparatus 10 and temperature gages 48 and 50 are included for sensing and displaying the respective thermal levels in the inlet water line 26 and the recirculation washing liquid line 38. In addition, a blower 52 is situated atop the cabinet 12 for free exposure of its air inlet 54, blower 52 including an electrically energized fan motor and suitable arranged blades for delivering drying air to the items of flatware being sanitized in chamber 14. Conventional control circuitry is provided for intermittently operating the blower 52 after completion of the wash and rinse cycles.

Turning to Fig. 2, the apparatus 10 includes a rotatable platform 56 which is housed in washing chamber 14 and which is adapted to receive and support a cylindrical, perforated cup 58 that is used for holding a plurality of flatware pieces 60 in handles down, loosely shocked, shbstantially upright condition as shown. In order to dispose the platform 56 at an angle inclined from the horizontal, a bracket 62 is fastened in the chamber 14 attached to appropriate portions of the cabinet 12. In the illustrated embodiment, the platform 56 is arranged to take disc shape and is secured to a central shaft 64, shaft 64 being, in turn, journaled for free rotation in a bearing unit 66. With the cup or holder 58 thus angularly inclined, its rotation causes the flatware pieces 60 to cascade within its confines under the influence of gravity.

The apparatus 10 accordingly includes drive means for causing rotation of the perforated cup 58, and in the disclosed embodiment, a drive arrangement 68 advantageously includes a pair of resilient drive rollers 70 which are mounted on respective shafts 72, spaced apart by a suitable horizontal distance for engaging the cup 58 at points spaced on one side of the diameter thereof. The shafts 72 are mounted for free rotation in bearings 74 which are secured to the bracket 72, the shafts 72 being journaled at their upper ends to a bracket 76, which is fastened to a cabinet wall of the housing 12. A pinion gear 78 is mounted on each of the shafts 72; and these pinions are engaged by a common worm 80, the worm 80 being rotated from a suitable, electrically energized motor, not shown.

In order to ensure driving engagement between the cup or holder 58 and the drive rollers 70, a pair of resilient, spaced idler rollers 82 are rotatably mounted on the inside surface of door 20 by means of respective shafts 84 and a C-shaped bracket 86. Hence, after a cup filled with flatware has been placed on the platform 56 and the door 20 is closed and latched in the closed position, the idler rollers 82 engage and resiliently urge the cup 58 into frictional, driving engagement with the rollers 70.

The chamber 14 also houses an overhead washspray unit 88 and an overhead rinse-spray unit 90, connected respectively to the recirculation line 38 and the inlet water line 26 through suitably cycled valving, not shown. Continuing with reference to Fig. 2, with supplemental reference to Fig. 3, and in compliance with an important feature of the present invention, the wash-spray unit 88 includes a nozzle 92 which is positioned to direct "knife" pattern fan jets 94 of the washing and sanitizing fluid into the path of the cascading flatware pieces generally downhill from the apogee of their transit as is shown in Fig. 3.So arranged, the wash nozzle 92 cooperates with the rotation imparted to the cup holder 58 in the direction of arrow 95 in Fig. 3. in achieving a contact of the wash and sanitizing fluid with substantially all of the surfaces of the flatware pieces 60, the adverse effects of shading and nesting being substantially circumvented by the relative movement of the flatware pieces in the jets of washing and sanitizing fluid. Pressurizing the fluid delivered by the nozzle 92 enhances both separation of the flatware pieces and the resultant efficacy of the washing action.

The rinse-spray unit 90 includes a nozzle 96 which is positioned to direct jets 98 of heated rinse water from the inlet line 26 generally into the path of the orbiting flatware pieces spaced apart from the path of the jets of washing fluid. Conveniently, the rinse jets 98 are situated nearer the diameter of the cup 58 than the jets 94 for the washing and sanitizing fluid according to the showing of Fig. 3.

As will be appreciated, conventional means are provided for appropriately cycling the action of the wash-spray unit 88 and the rinse-spray unit 90.

Heated drying air from the blower 52 is also cycled in a stream from a blower outlet 100 generally axially of the flatware pieces contained in the holder cup 58 during that portion of the cycle in which the spray units 88 and 90 are not operative.

This axial air flow tends to blow excess water droplets onto the flatware handles where waterspotting is of lesser concern. Because the holder cup 58 and the flatware pieces 60 are rotated, the blower and the water jets may be stationary rather than revolving.

In order to enhance the understanding of the invention, a modified embodiment thereof is shown in Figs. 4-6. Elements in the embodiment of Figs. 4 6 which are similar to those employed in the embodiment of Figs. 1-3 have been identified by like reference numerals with the suffix letter "a" being employed to distinguish these elements associated with the embodiment of Figs. 4-6.

The flatware washing apparatus 10a is characterized by the provision of a lifter platform 100 which is situated in the cup holder 58a for movement between a first retracted position for the flatware pieces 60a, illustrated in Fig. 4, and a second elevated position for raising the food-contact surfaces of the flatware pieces above the lip of the cup 58a and fully into exposure to the washing fluid jets, as shown in Fig. 5. The lifter platform 100 usefully comprises the bottom of a cylindrical, cup-shaped insert member 102; and the bottom lifter platform 100 is also advantageously perforated with a suitable pattern of drain holes 104. In addition, the insert member 102 is dimensioned to be freely slidable axially within the cup holder 58a.

In order to define a mechanical upstop for the insert number 102, a suitable number of radially inwardly projecting, equally arcuately spaced vanes 106 is fastened to the inside wall of the cup holder 58a extending generally longitudinally thereof, bottom end portions 108 of the vanes 106 specifically defining the mechanical stops for the insert member 102 at a distance from the bottom of the cup that typically raises the flatware pieces about oneinch about the rim of the cup. Other forms of stops may be employed to replace the vanes 106; but utilization of radially inwardly projecting, longitudi nally extending vanes is advantageous in that they serve to transmit generally rotative force to the various flatware pieces for promoting agitated motion thereof.Regardless of their form, these upstops preserve the assembled condition of the cup holder and the insert members to prevent undesirable loss of the insert member in the general course of handling.

In accordance with another feature of the modified apparatus 10a, the platform 56a is stationarily mounted and is apertured with a hole 110 which freely passes a vertically reciprocable, rotatably driven shaft 112 into engagement with the cup holder 58a. Cooperatively, the rotatable shaft 112 is fashioned with rectangular cross-section and the bottom of the cup holder 58a is perforated with a matching keyway 114 for fittedly receiving the end of shaft 112 and imparting rotational force from the shaft to the cup holder 58a. In such instance, the various rollers which engage the exterior surface on the cup holder are uniformly arranged to be idlers.When it is desired to lift the insert member 102, suitable mechanical means such as a rackand-pinion arrangement, not shown, are actuated to advance the shaft 112 to elevate the insert member for fanning or splaying the flatware utensils Reverse action lowers the shaft.

The apparatus 10a is particularly arranged to embody a first, upper spray device 116 which is focused generally downwardly toward the lip of the cup holder 58a, as is shown in Figs.4 and 5, from a rotationally upstream relative position, as is shown in Fig. 6. A second spray device 118 is focused generally upwardly toward the lip of the cup holder 58a as is shown in Figs. 4 and 5, where it directs the jets of washing fluid into maximum contact'with the flatware food-contact surfaces in their elevated position, as shown in Fig. 5.Moreover, the second spray device 118 is disposed rotationally subsequent to the spray device 116 in order to create a relatively quiet zone of reduced relative motion for the flatware pieces between the two spray devices, it having been found that transition of the flatware pieces from such a relatively quiet zone and into a zone of agitated motion caused by impinging jets of washing fluid enhances the exposure of the flatware food-contact surfaces to the washing action. As will be appreciated, a secondary quiet zone exists in the major arc of travel in the direction of cup rotation between spray device 118 and spray device 116.Continuing with reference to Fig. 6, it has proved advantageous to space the spray devices 116 and 118 at equal distances from and on the opposite sides of an axial plane 120 which bisects the cup holder 58a, thus tending to balance the effect of jet spray forces on the cup holder 58a.

An upstop 122 is usefully mounted on the shaft 112 to comprise an elastomeric bumper 124 and a back-up plate 126, bumper 124 resiliently engaging the platform 56a in the elevated position of the lifter insert member 102. Furthermore, the described positioning of the several spray devices 116 and 118 in the flatware washing apparatus 10a allows horizontal disposition of the platform 56a and convenient upright situation of the cup holder 58a.

As will be appreciated, the use of the flatware lifter system described immediately hereinabove serves to fan the flatware pieces which have been loaded into the cup or holder 58a. This fanning action is especially important to proper cleaning of the utensils when the soiled pieces have been tightly packed into the holder in the first instance by the kitchen attendants.

The drawings and the foregoing descriptions are not intended to represent the only forms of the invention in regard to the details of its construction and manner of operation. Changes in form and in the proportion of parts, as well as the substitution of equivalents, are contemplated as circumstances may suggest or render expedient; and although specific terms have been employed, they are intended in a generic and descriptive sense only and not for purposes of limitation, the scope of the invention being delineated in the following claims:

Claims (11)

1. Flatware washing apparatus comprising processing means for supporting a flatware-holding cup at an angle inclined from the horizontal and for rotating said cup about its own individual axis to cause the flatware pieces to cascade freely under the influence of gravity, and spray means for directing jets of washing fluid into the path of the cascading flatware pieces generally downhill from the apogee of their orbiting transit.
2. Flatware washing apparatus according to Claim 1, including a rotatable platform for supporting the cup, mounting means for disposing the platform at said angle, and drive means for causing rotation of the cup.
3. Flatware washing apparatus according to Claim 2, which further comprises cabinet means including a loading door, and wherein the drive means includes drive roller means mounted within the cabinet means for drivable engagement with the cup, and idler roller means mounted on the inside wall of the door for automatically urging the cup into frictional engagement with the drive roller means when the door is closed.
4. Flatware washing apparatus according to any of the preceeding Claims, which further comprises second spray means positioned to direct jets of rinse fluid into the path of the orbiting flatware pieces apart from the path of the jets of washing fluid.
5. Flatware washing apparatus according to any of the preceeding Claims, which further comprises lifter platform means disposed within the cup for movement between a first, retracted position for the flatware pieces and a second, elevated position raising the food-contact surfaces of the flatware pieces above the lip of said cup and fully into exposure to said jets; and selectively operable, platform actuating means for relocating the lifter platform means from one to the other of its first and second positions.
6. Flatware washing apparatus according to any of the preceeding Claims, which further comprises a plurality of radially inwardly projecting vanes on the inside wall of said cup, extending longitudinally thereof for transmitting generally rotative mixing forces to the flatware pieces.
7. Flatware washing apparatus according to Claim 6, wherein the vanes include bottom end portions spaced above the bottom of the cup to define mechanical stop means for the platform means at its second position.
8. Flatware washing apparatus according to any of the preceeding Claims, wherein the spray means includes a first spray device focused toward the cup in a first direction and a second spray device focused toward the cup in a second direction rotationally spaced subsequent to said first direction, whereby to create relatively quiet zones of reduced relative motion for the flatware pieces therebetween, transition of the flatware pieces from a relatively quiet zone to a zone of agitated motion caused by impinging jets of washing fluid enhancing the exposure of the flatware food-contact surfaces to the washing action.
9. Flatware washing apparatus according to Claim 8, wherein the first spray device is focused generally downwardly toward the lip of the cup and wherein the second spray device is focused generally upwardly toward the lip of the cup.
10. Flatware washing apparatus according to any of the preceeding Claims, which further comprises means for directing a flow of drying air against the cascading flatware pieces.
11. Flatware washing apparatus substantially as described herein with reference to Figures 1-3, or Figures 4-6, of the accompanying drawings.
GB08406131A 1984-03-08 1984-03-08 Washing machine Expired GB2155313B (en)

Priority Applications (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB08406131A GB2155313B (en) 1984-03-08 1984-03-08 Washing machine

Applications Claiming Priority (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB08406131A GB2155313B (en) 1984-03-08 1984-03-08 Washing machine
GB08721731A GB2198931B (en) 1984-03-08 1987-09-16 Washing machine

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Publication Number Publication Date
GB8406131D0 GB8406131D0 (en) 1984-04-11
GB2155313A true GB2155313A (en) 1985-09-25
GB2155313B GB2155313B (en) 1988-11-30

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GB08406131A Expired GB2155313B (en) 1984-03-08 1984-03-08 Washing machine

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Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
GB2192126A (en) * 1986-07-02 1988-01-06 Hsiung Tseng Cheng Dishwasher
DE4022269A1 (en) * 1990-07-12 1992-01-16 Licentia Gmbh Front-loading electric dishwasher - has auxiliary basket attached directly to inside face of drop-down door
GB2273884A (en) * 1992-12-29 1994-07-06 Hop Kwen Toys Manufactory Co L Toy dishwasher.

Families Citing this family (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
CN107150044A (en) * 2017-07-18 2017-09-12 无锡市白马机械设备有限公司 The cleaning machine of mounting robot dolly traveling cleaning

Citations (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4456022A (en) * 1981-10-16 1984-06-26 Roberts Donald E Flatware washing machine

Patent Citations (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4456022A (en) * 1981-10-16 1984-06-26 Roberts Donald E Flatware washing machine

Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
GB2192126A (en) * 1986-07-02 1988-01-06 Hsiung Tseng Cheng Dishwasher
DE4022269A1 (en) * 1990-07-12 1992-01-16 Licentia Gmbh Front-loading electric dishwasher - has auxiliary basket attached directly to inside face of drop-down door
GB2273884A (en) * 1992-12-29 1994-07-06 Hop Kwen Toys Manufactory Co L Toy dishwasher.
GB2273884B (en) * 1992-12-29 1995-09-06 Hop Kwen Toys Manufactory Co L Toy dishwasher

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Publication number Publication date
GB8406131D0 (en) 1984-04-11
GB2155313B (en) 1988-11-30

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