US2888889A - Cabinet door safety apparatus - Google Patents

Cabinet door safety apparatus Download PDF

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US2888889A
US2888889A US465629A US46562954A US2888889A US 2888889 A US2888889 A US 2888889A US 465629 A US465629 A US 465629A US 46562954 A US46562954 A US 46562954A US 2888889 A US2888889 A US 2888889A
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door
means
cabinet
stop
position
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US465629A
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Iber C Courson
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Space Systems Loral LLC
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Space Systems Loral LLC
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    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D29/00Arrangement or mounting of control or safety devices
    • F25D29/006Safety devices
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y10TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC
    • Y10TTECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER US CLASSIFICATION
    • Y10T292/00Closure fasteners
    • Y10T292/08Bolts
    • Y10T292/0911Hooked end
    • Y10T292/0926Spring projected
    • Y10T292/0928Operating means
    • Y10T292/0932Lever

Description

June 2, 1959 I. 'c. couRsoN 2,888,889

CABINET DOOR SAFETY APPARATUS Filed Oct. 29, 1954 1' IIIIIA INVENTOR.

United States Patent 56 CABINET DOUR SAFETY APPARATUS Iber C. Courson, Glenside, Pa, assignor to Philco Corporation, Philadelphia, Pa., a corporation of Pennsyl- Vania Application October 29, 1954, Serial No. 465,629

7 Claims. (Cl. 109-635) My invention isv concerned with safety apparatus, and the concepts of the invention are particularly applicable to cabinets which can be sealed in an airtight fashion and which include means normally holding or latching the cabinet door in closed position in which the seal is maintained. While of broader applicability the apparatus of the invention is particularlyuseful in the field of refrigerator cabinetry, and for exemplary purposes the invention is shown, and described hereinafter, in this environment.

Not infrequently there occurs a tragic suffocation of a child who has entered and closed the door of a substantially airtight cabinet, most commonly after discarding or storing of the same. In such cabinets the gasket seal around the door does not permit sufficient flow of air into and out of the cabinet to sustain life for more than a short time.

It is of course widely recognized that every practicable means should be employed to eliminate a hazard of this kind and many difierent approaches have been made to the problem. However it has proven very difficult to provide a really satisfactory solution to the problem since it is necessary not only to meet the safety requirement, but also to provide reasonably priced equipment which can be manufactured and merchandised on a competitive mass-production basis.

With the foregoing in mind it is, broadly, the objective of my invention to minimize the aforesaid hazard by providing door securement apparatus which includes simple and inexpensive safety equipment of such a nature as virtually to eliminate the possibility of accidental entrapment.. In accomplishing this objective I have recognized that most substantially airtight cabinets or enclosures within which entrapment might occur are provided with apparatus adapted to be energized from a power supply located exteriorly of the cabinet, and operation of which apparatus is characteristic of normal usage. Refrigerators and food freezers for example are provided with an electrically energizable system effective to maintain the cabinet at a desired temperature, and which system is energized from the houshold power supply through the agency of a service cord. When cabinets of this general type are discarded or stored it is evident that disconnection of the service cord from the power supply is desirable, and in fact necessary, in order to permit removalof the equipment to a suitable storage area.

Having recognized that this is the case I have provided means automatically operable, in response to disconnection of the power supply, to prevent operation of'the door holding or latching apparatus. To this general end the invention provides means, such as a solenoid device, which is normally held in inoperative or rest position, while the equipment remains connected to the power supply, and which device is of such character as to prevent latching of the door in response to an interruption of the power supply. In the preferred embodiment of the invention which is described hereinafter I provide door stop means normally maintained in a retracted position with respect to the cabinet and adapted to move to an extended position, in which it prevents closing of the door and consequent latching of the same, if the equipment be disconnected from the power supply means.

In accordance with a moredetailed object of the invention, there is provided a safety equipment characterizedin that temporary interruptions of the power supply will not interfere with securement of the door, provided the door has not been opened during the power interruption. In the event that access should be had to the space within the cabinet during a power interruption, and in accordance with another feature of the invention, the safety equipment is so designed as to permit relatching of. the door, in response to a special manipulation which cannot readily be made by an unauthorized person following storage of the equipment.

The manner in which the foregoing and other objects and advantages of the invention may best be achieved, will be fully understood from a consideration of the following description taken together with the accompanying drawing illustrating a preferred embodiment of the invention.

In the drawing:

Figure 1 is a fragmentary perspective illustration, partly in section, showing a refrigerator cabinet embodying the present invention, the view including diagrammatic representation of the electrically energizable apparatus which maintains the cabinet storage space within a desired temperature range;

Figure 2 is a fragmentary sectional view on an enlarged scale, the view being taken. through. a forward corner portion of the cabinet and door assembly and illustrating the apparatus of the invention in its inoperative or rest position; and,

Figure 3 is a view similar to Figure 2 and illustrative of the position of the parts when the refrigerator has been disconnectedfrom its power supply and securement of the door is prevented.

Now making more detailed reference to the drawing, the numeral 10 designates a refrigerator cabinet defining a storage compartment represented diagrammatically by the broken line 11 shown in Figure 1, this compartment being of the open front type which is normally closed by the door shown. at 12. In accordance with common practice the cabinet structure includes an outer shell 13 and an inner shell or liner member 14, the space between said shell and liner member being filled with suitable insulation, as shown at 15. At the forward or throat portion of the cabinet a breaker strip member 16, comprised of material of low thermal conductivity, bridges the gap between the confronting flanges of the outer shell and inner liner, it being understood that this breaker strip member extends around the door opening. Cabinets of this type are well known and further and more detailed description is therefore not neccessary other than to call attention to the fact that a resilient gasket 17 extends about the peripheral edge portions of the door and is adapted to seat against the inturned flange 18 of the outer shell (see Figure 2) to seal the cabinet. Also, a channel member 19' extends upwardly along both sides of the cabinet in forward corner portion thereof. As will be mentioned hereinafter, this channel member serves to support the safety apparatus of the present invention and to strengthen the cabinet shell.

While refrigeration systems of the kind commonly used to maintain the temperature conditions desired within such cabinets are well known and therefore need not be gized by connection of the service supply cord 24 to the receptacle 25, to which latter electrical energy is delivered from the line L. It will be understood that, in practice, provision would be made to provide for cyclic operation of the refrigerating system. However, for the purposes of this invention the diagrammatic representation of Figure l is suflicient.

While a variety of means or devices, including magnetic means, can be utilized to secure or hold the door in closed position, I prefer to employ a latch of the kind more or less diagrammatically represented at 26 in Figure 2. This latch includes a pivotally mounted latch bolt 27, a cabinet-carried keeper 28, and a handle 29 which may be manipulated from the front of the cabinet. A spring 30 normally urges the latch bolt in a clock-wise direction about its pivot in order that said bolt may engage the keeper 23 and hold the door closed. The handle 29 has an extension 31 which bears against a confronting extension 32 provided upon the latch bolt 27 and, in accordance with known practice, manipulation of the handle serves through the agency of extensions 31-42 to move the keeper-engaging portion of the bolt in a counter clock-wise direction, thereby freeing the bolt from the keeper and permitting opening of the door. It will be recognized that this latch construction is shown by way of example, and that the invention is not limited to'use with a latch of the kind described.

In particular accordance with the present invention there is disposed between the outer shell 13 and the inner liner 14, in the forward left-hand corner portion of the cabinet, a solenoid device 33 which is carried by a generally S-shaped bracket 34 fixed to the forward flange of the channel member 19. The solenoid device comprises a winding 35 and a reciprocable armature or plunger 36, to the forward part of which is secured an actuating rod or wire 37 constructed and arranged to rotate a door stop device 38 which is mounted for pivotal movement about a pin 39 carried by the aforesaid channel member 19. A light spring 40 urges the door stop device toward the extended position shown in Figure 3, it being clear that the breaker strip is apertured to accommodate outward movement of the stop device toward the door 12. The solenoid device normally holds the door stop in its retracted position in which its forward end 41 lies substantially in the plane of the breaker strip member 16.

As shown in Figure l, the winding 35 of solenoid device 33 is adapted for connection to the line L through the agency of conductors 42-42 and by means of the service plug 24. The solenoid device is of the so-called f tr'action type in which energization of the coil 35 serves to maintain the armature 36 in the retracted position shown in Figure 2, in which position the stop device 38 is retracted and does not interfere with closure and consequent latching of the door.

t will be appreciated that during handling of the cabinet, or for example if the latter be displayed upon a sales floor without connection to a power supply, the door stop device 38 may readily be held in retracted position by the use of simple means such, for example, as a small plate or suitable tape secured across the door stop in position to prevent extension of the stop toward the door.

As will now be evident in the light of the foregoing description, interruption of the power supply, as by disconnection of the plug 24 from the receptacle 25, deenergizes the solenoid winding 35 thereby permitting forward rotary movement of the door stop 38 through the influence of spring 46. As a result of such rotary movement, which is normally prevented by retraction of the armature and its associated coupling wire, the stop device 38 moves to the position shown in Figure 3. When the stop device occupies this position closure of the door and consequent latching of the same is prevented, since the door gasket impinges against the forwardly presented edge of the stop device. Since the cabinet must be dis- 4 connected prior to storage, it will be appreciated that the safety equipment of this invention is automatic and requires no attention.

To prevent return of the stop device to its retracted position, which would of course permit the door to be latched, there is provided a spring biased detent lever 43 the forward end portion of which moves into engagement with a retaining shoulder 44 provided upon the stop device 38, with the result that retraction of the door stop device and engagement of the latch bolt 27 with the keeper 28 is not possible. In order that the detent lever shall be automatically operable it is urged toward a position in which it will engage the shoulder 44. This is accomplished through the agency of a spring 45 reacting against the S-shaped bracket 34 which latter also carries the detent lever.

If the door is opened during a temporary or inadvertent power interruption not occasioned by disconnection of the plug 24, the stop device 38 will move to its extended position shown in Figure 3, thereby preventing reclosure of the door. In such event it is desirable to retract the stop device to permit relatching of the door, and to this end the inner liner member 14 is provided with a small aperture 46 in a region confronting the inner end of the detent lever 43. By inserting a screw driver or other slender instrument through the aperture 46 it is possible to move the detent lever in a counter clockwise direction against the force of the spring 45, thereby moving the lever out of engagement with the stop device and permitting manual movement of the latter to a position such that the door may -be closed. To prevent unauthorized release of the detent lever 43, after abandonment or storage of the equipment, it is contemplated that the aperture 46 be covered by a small plate or stud (not illustrated) which later may, if desired, serve also as a means for supporting a shelf within the refrigerator.

From the foregoing description it will be understood thatby my invention there is provided door safety apparatus which substantially eliminates the danger of entrapment in an abandoned cabinet or enclosure which is of the type normally requiring connection to an external power supply. Since the great majority of scaled cabinets within which entrapment might occur are of this type, it will be appreciated that the simple, inexpensive, and automatic apparatus provided by this invention makes a significant contribution in the field of safety equipment.

. I claim:

1. In combination with structure defining an enclosure provided with a door and having electrical power supply means operation of which is necessary for normal functioning of apparatus housed within said enclosure, means operable upon closing of the door to hold the door in closed position, door stop means movable between a rest position and an operative position in which said stop means prevents closing of the door and consequent operation of the means for holding the door in closed position, means urging said stop means into operative position, and means operable by said power supply means to maintain said stop means in rest position, and arranged, on interruption of operation of the power supply means to automatically provide, through the intermediation of the mentioned stop-urging means, for movement of said stop means into operative position.

2. Apparatus in accordance with claim 1 and further characterized in that said means operable by said power supply means includes a solenoid device.

3. In combination with cabinet structure provided with a door, electrically energizable means for maintaining within said cabinet structure a condition desired during, and characteristic of, normal use of the cabinet structure, power supply means for said electrically energizable means, latch means for holding the door in closed position, door stop means movable between a rest position and an operative position in which said stop means prevents closing of the door and consequent operation of said latch means for holding the door in closed position, means for moving said stop means into operative position, electrically energized means adapted to maintain said stop means in rest position during normal use of the cabinet structure and arranged automatically to provide, through the intermediation of the mentioned stop-moving means, for movement of said stop means into operative position on interruption of operation of the power supply means, and detent means automatically engageable with said stop means and adapted to maintain the same in operative position, said detent means being releasable to permit return of the stop means to its rest position.

4. Apparatus in accordance with claim 3 and further characterized in that said stop means and detent means are mounted within wall portions of the structure defining said enclosure in adjacency to an edge of the door when the latter is in closed position, and in which apparatus access to the detent means may be had through the Wall structure to permit release of said detent means.

5. In combination with cabinet structure provided with a door, electrically energizable means for maintaining within said cabinet structure a condition desired during, and characteristic of, normal use of the cabinet structure, power supply means for said electrically energizable means, latch means for holding the door in closed position, door stop means movable between a rest position and an operative position in which said stop means prevents closing of the door and consequent operation of said latch means for holding the door in closed position, means urging said stop means into operative position, and means adapted to maintain said stop means in rest position during normal use of the cabinet structure and arranged automatically to provide through the intermediation of the mentioned stop-urging means, for movement of said stop means into operative position on interruption of operation of the power supply means.

6. Apparatus in accordance with claim 5 and further characterized in that said means adapted to maintain said stop means in rest position includes a solenoid device.

7. Apparatus in accordance with claim 6 and further characterized in that said solenoid device is carried by a wall portion of the cabinet structure in adjacency to an edge of the door when the latter is in closed position, the mentioned stop-urging means serving, on said interruption, automatically to move said stop element from a rest position in which it is retracted with respect to said wall portion into an operative position in which it extends from said 'wall portoin preventing closure of said door.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 485,367 Bosch Nov. 1, 1892 1,271,363 Ralston July 2, 1918 2,032,600 Smith Mar. 3, 1936 2,171,365 Harding Aug. 29, 1939 2,252,144 Taylor Aug. 12, 1941 2,253,252 Smith Aug. 19, 1941 2,259,389 Metzerott Oct. 14, 1941 2,281,852 Messler May 5, 1942 2,584,480 Manting Feb. 5, 1952 2,764,874 Sharpe Oct. 2, 1956 2,818,825 Marek Jan. 7, 1958

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Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3026825A (en) * 1960-05-04 1962-03-27 Gaylord B Kidwell Anti-locking device for refrigerators
US3194190A (en) * 1963-10-24 1965-07-13 James F Harger Safety lock for refrigerators
US3322458A (en) * 1965-12-08 1967-05-30 Chrysler Corp Swivel seat for motor vehicle

Citations (11)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US485367A (en) * 1892-11-01 Electrical door-trip for engine-houses
US1271363A (en) * 1918-01-26 1918-07-02 John E Ralston Door-stop.
US2032600A (en) * 1934-11-02 1936-03-03 Smith Frank Allison Vehicle door check
US2171365A (en) * 1937-09-03 1939-08-29 Howard V Harding Automatic holding and releasing device
US2252144A (en) * 1937-12-27 1941-08-12 Servel Inc Refrigerator door latch
US2253252A (en) * 1937-09-28 1941-08-19 Gen Motors Corp Refrigerating apparatus
US2259389A (en) * 1941-01-10 1941-10-14 Metzerott Oliver Latch for the doors of safety deposit structures
US2281852A (en) * 1940-07-08 1942-05-05 Colt S Mfg Co Dishwashing machine
US2584480A (en) * 1950-12-09 1952-02-05 Denham Mfg Company Magnetic latch for doors
US2764874A (en) * 1954-08-17 1956-10-02 Gen Motors Corp Refrigerator door fastener
US2818825A (en) * 1954-03-05 1958-01-07 James F Marek Safety device for refrigerators

Patent Citations (11)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US485367A (en) * 1892-11-01 Electrical door-trip for engine-houses
US1271363A (en) * 1918-01-26 1918-07-02 John E Ralston Door-stop.
US2032600A (en) * 1934-11-02 1936-03-03 Smith Frank Allison Vehicle door check
US2171365A (en) * 1937-09-03 1939-08-29 Howard V Harding Automatic holding and releasing device
US2253252A (en) * 1937-09-28 1941-08-19 Gen Motors Corp Refrigerating apparatus
US2252144A (en) * 1937-12-27 1941-08-12 Servel Inc Refrigerator door latch
US2281852A (en) * 1940-07-08 1942-05-05 Colt S Mfg Co Dishwashing machine
US2259389A (en) * 1941-01-10 1941-10-14 Metzerott Oliver Latch for the doors of safety deposit structures
US2584480A (en) * 1950-12-09 1952-02-05 Denham Mfg Company Magnetic latch for doors
US2818825A (en) * 1954-03-05 1958-01-07 James F Marek Safety device for refrigerators
US2764874A (en) * 1954-08-17 1956-10-02 Gen Motors Corp Refrigerator door fastener

Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3026825A (en) * 1960-05-04 1962-03-27 Gaylord B Kidwell Anti-locking device for refrigerators
US3194190A (en) * 1963-10-24 1965-07-13 James F Harger Safety lock for refrigerators
US3322458A (en) * 1965-12-08 1967-05-30 Chrysler Corp Swivel seat for motor vehicle

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