US3445879A - Cleaning device for fragile flexible hose - Google Patents

Cleaning device for fragile flexible hose Download PDF

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US3445879A
US3445879A US3445879DA US3445879A US 3445879 A US3445879 A US 3445879A US 3445879D A US3445879D A US 3445879DA US 3445879 A US3445879 A US 3445879A
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United States
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hose
end
cleaning device
member
obstruction
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Expired - Lifetime
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Robert L Taylor
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Robert L Taylor
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47LDOMESTIC WASHING OR CLEANING; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47L9/00Details or accessories of suction cleaners, e.g. mechanical means for controlling the suction or for effecting pulsating action; Storing devices specially adapted to suction cleaners or parts thereof; Carrying-vehicles specially adapted for suction cleaners
    • A47L9/24Hoses or pipes; Hose or pipe couplings
    • A47L9/248Parts, details or accessories of hoses or pipes
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B08CLEANING
    • B08BCLEANING IN GENERAL; PREVENTION OF FOULING IN GENERAL
    • B08B9/00Cleaning hollow articles by methods or apparatus specially adapted thereto
    • B08B9/02Cleaning pipes or tubes or systems of pipes or tubes
    • B08B9/027Cleaning the internal surfaces; Removal of blockages
    • B08B9/04Cleaning the internal surfaces; Removal of blockages using cleaning devices introduced into and moved along the pipes
    • B08B9/043Cleaning the internal surfaces; Removal of blockages using cleaning devices introduced into and moved along the pipes moved by externally powered mechanical linkage, e.g. pushed or drawn through the pipes
    • B08B9/045Cleaning the internal surfaces; Removal of blockages using cleaning devices introduced into and moved along the pipes moved by externally powered mechanical linkage, e.g. pushed or drawn through the pipes the cleaning devices being rotated while moved, e.g. flexible rotating shaft or "snake"

Description

l May 27, 1969 ln.' L. vwnrLoR' CLEANING DEVICE FOR FRAGILE FLEXIBLE HOSE Filed Jan. 12, 1968 /N VENTR Paberylor M "ys I United States Patent O U.S. Cl. 15-104.1 7 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An elongated cleaning device for insertion into an obstructed fragile flexible hose, such as a vacuum cleaner hose, the cleaning device having a blunt forward end free of any tendency to puncture the hose. The forward end of the device includes a guard member in which is positioned an obstruction engaging member. When an obstruction is encountered by the guard member, the obstruction engaging member is moved forwardly of the guard member and rotated to engage the obstruction, after which the cleaning device and engaged obstruction are withdrawn from the hose, In some cases the obstruction simply is broken up so it is free to move within the hose.

Background of the invention Applicant has been engaged in the vacuum cleaner eld for many years, and well knows that vacuum cleaner hoses are subject to obstruction or plugging during normal use. The interior of such hose, while perhaps smooth when new, roughens during use, and on occasion will have one or more bits of foreign matter become secured thereto. This foreign matter, in turn, traps additional foreign matter passing through the hose, and quickly produces a blocking obstruction, rendering the vacuum cleaner inoperative.

As far as is known, no cleaning tool is available commercially for removing obstructions from fragile flexible hose, such as vacuum cleaner hose. One procedure commonly followed by vacuum cleaner users is to use the extended wire of a wire coat hanger for the purpose of dislodging or breaking up an obstruction. The end of a coat hanger wire is stiff, and usually relatively sharp. Unless bent back on itself, seldom done, the end quite likely will puncture the fragile hose, requiring unsightly makeshift repair such as winding friction tape on the hose exterior at the puncture. This commonly used procedure for removing obstructions from fragile flexible hose obviously is unsatisfactory.

Applicant has made a patentability investigation, and fails to find in the pertinent patent and literature fields covered on the investigation any prior cleaning device designed or suitable for fragile flexible hose. The prior art, of course, is replete with disclosures of cleaning devices for sewers and other metallic or ceramic piping in the plumbing field. Typical prior patents in this category include 984,473; 1,261,444; 1,918,353; 2,631,114 and 2,694,822.

Summary of the invention A cleaning device designed to prevent damage to a fragile flexible hose, such as vacuum cleaner hose. The device has an elongated flexible guide sheath, a guard member on one end of the guide sheath, the free end thereof being blunt, a flexible cable -extending through the guide sheath, a handle on the end of the flexible cable remote from the guard member, a compression spring extending between the handle and adjacent end of the guide sheath, means imparting stiffness to the assembly ACe of the compression spring and coextensive length of flexible cable, and an obstruction engaging member ou the end of the flexible cable opposite the handle. The obstruction engaging member normally is disposed within the guard member when the cleaning device is inserted into a hose to be cleaned, the guard member being free of any tendency to puncture the fragile hose. The obstruction engaging member, when obstru'ction is encountered, is movable forwardly beyond the guard member and rotatable in response to actuation of the handle, whereby an obstruction is engaged, and removed on withdrawal of the cleaning device from the hose, or broken up into smaller parts that readily will pass through the hose.

Other objects, advantages and details of the invention will be apparent as the description proceeds, reference being had to the accompanying drawing wherein one form of the invention is shown. It is to be understood that the description and drawing are illustrative only, and that the scope of the invention is to be measured by the appended claims.

Brief description of the drawing FIG. 1 is an elevational view, partly in section, of an exemplary cleaning device for fragile flexible hose embodying the invention.

FIG. 2 is an end view on line 2 2 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a sectional view on line 3-3 of FIG. 1.

Description of the preferred embodiment Referring now to the drawing, the illustrated cleaning device, generally designated 10, is used by inserting same in an obstructed fragile flexible hose, a fragmentary portion of which is illustrated and designated 11 in FIG. 1. Hose 11 usually is made of lightweight material such as thin plastic, rubber or fabric, reinforced to prevent collapse, such hose being suitable for use in vacuum cleaning apparatus. Hose of this type is suscepti-ble to puncture, particularly `by makeshift elongated members, such as extended coat hanger wire, commonly used to dislodge or remove obstructions.

Cleaning device 10 includes an elongated flexible guide sheath 15. A flexible tube of plastic material is suitable for guide sheath 15, although tubes of other flexible material equally well may be used. The length of guide sheath 15 preferably is generally equal to at least onehalf the length of the hose to be cleaned. Thus, in cleaning an obstructed hose, the cleaning device is inserted first from one end and then the other. The two ends of guide sheath 15 are designated 16 and 17, the end 16 shown received within a reinforcing member 18.

A relatively rigid guard member 20 is mounted on one end, namely, the forward end 17, of guide sheath 15. As shown, guard member 20 is tubular and has a reduced coupling portion 21 which receives end 17 of guide sheath 15.

In the form of the invention shown, a ring 22 is disposed within coupling portion 21 of guard member 20 and is effective to clamp sheath end 17 between the ring and coupling portion 21. A rigid tubular member 23, the function of which will be mentioned later, is secured to ring 22 and extends forwardly through a portion of the remaining length of guard member 20.

Guard member 20 at the free end 24 thereof has a generally circular periphery of outer diameter less than the inner diameter of hose 11, whereby member 20, the member of greatest diameter in the cleaning device, readily may pass through the interior of hose 11. Free end 24 of guard member 20 has a blunt configuration, rendering the end free of any tendency to puncture the fragile flexible hose 11 during the cleaning process.

A flexible cable 25 of braided wire or like material extends through guide sheath 15, and is of length somewhat greater than that of the guide sheath. As shown in FIG. 1, the excess length of flexible ca-ble 25 normally is located at the end of guide sheath 15 opposite the end having guard member 20. The opposite ends of flexible cable 25 are designated 26 and 27.

A handle 30 is mounted rigidly on end 26 of flexible cable 25. During use of the cleaning device, handle 3i) and associated flexible cable 2S are moved forwardly and rotated, both with reference to guide sheath 15, as will be seen.

A compression spring 35 extends between and abuts handle 30 and reinforcing member 18 on adjacent end 16 of guide sheath 15. As shown, compression spring 35 is a spiral spring which surrounds the exposed end portion of flexible cable 25 and another member presently to be described. The purpose of spring 35 is to apply a bias between guide sheath 15 and flexible cable 25 in such direction that the handle end 26 of the cable tends to be forced away from adjacent end 16 of the guide sheath.

Suitable means, here shown by way of example as a relatively stiff rod 40, is provided to impart requisite stiffness to the assembly comprising spring 35 and the coextensive length of flexible cable 25. In the form of the invention shown, rod 40 is secured rigidly to handle 30, and extends 'between handle 30 and guide sheath 15 in parallelism with the adjacent length of flexible cable 25 and within the convolutions of spiral compression spring 35. The length of rod 40 is such that at all times the free end 41 thereof is disposed within the end portion of guide sheath 15 at the end 16 thereof, as shown in FIG. 1. As will be seen, end 41 of rod 40 moves back and forth within the end portion of guide sheath 15 during use of the cleaning device. Alternatively, the coextensive exposed length of cable 25 could itself be stiff, or rendered stiff by internal or integral means.

An obstruction engaging member, generally designated 45, is rigidly secured to end 27 of flexible cable 25, as shown at the right in FIG. l. Member 45 has one or more elements 46 adapted to make securing engagement with an obstruction encountered in hose 11. As illustrated, three such elements 46 may be used, and each takes the form of a curved, pointed hook. The hook elements 46, best shown in FIG. 2, are mounted in uniformly spaced relation on a tubular hub member 47 received on and secured to end 27 of iiexible cable 25.

The pointed end 48 of each hook element 46 points inwardly of the imaginary circle established by the radially outer portions of the hook elements 46. The purpose of this, of course, is to provide an arrangement whereby the pointed ends of the obstruction engaging member never `can puncture the fragile flexible hose 11. Further, the respective hook elements 46 preferably are inclined forwardly of a plane normal to the axis of tubular hub member 47, as best shown in FIG. l. This inclination facilitates a secure engagement between obstruction engaging member 45 and an encountered obstruction in hose 11.

During use, cleaning device is inserted into one end of a hose 11 to be cleaned for such distance that the end portion of guide sheath having end 16 remains outside the hose, or some shorter distance established by engagement of guard member with an obstruction in the hose. When obstruction is encountered, the operator with one hand manually clamps sheath 15 to the adjacent end of hose 11, and with the other hand presses forwardly on handle 30. This latter action causes flexible cable to move farther into sheath 15, and simultaneously causes obstruction engaging member 45 to move forwardly a short distance such as an inch or two beyond free end 24 of guard member 20. Obstruction engaging member 45 thereby is brought into pressed engagement with the obstruction, and at this time the operator rotates handle which in turn rotates cable 25 and member 45. Such rotary action causes hook elements 46 of member 45 either to engage securely the encountered obstruction, or `to break up the obstruction into smaller parts subject to removal by gravitational or other forces. If secure engagement occurs, the obstruction is removed when the cleaning device is withdrawn from the hose.

If the cleaning device is of such length that the first cleaning effort serves only about one-half of the hose length, the procedure is repeated from the opposite end of hose 11. Thereafter, lengths of hose 11 may be disposed in vertical position to discharge obstruction fragments, if any, or, in the case of vacuum cleaner hose, the low pressure generator may be energized to dispose of the fragments during normal operation of the vacuum cleaner system.

From the above description it is thought that the construction and advantages of this invention `will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art. Various changes in detail may be made without departing from the spirit or losing the advantages of the invention.

Having thus described the invention, what is claimed as new and desired to secure by Letters Patent is:

1. A cleaning device for fragile flexible hose comprislng:

an elongated flexible guide sheath;

a relatively rigid guard member mounted on one end of said guide sheath, said guard member blunt at the free end thereof and having a generally circular periphery of outer diameter less than the inner diameter of said hose;

a iiexible cable of length greater than the length of said `guide sheath extending through said guide sheath;

a handle on the end of said cable remote from said guard member;

a compression spring extending between and abutting said handle and the adjacent end of said guide sheath;

means imparting stiffness to the assembly of said compression spring and the coextensive length of said cable; and

an obstruction engaging member on the end of said flexible cable opposite said handle, said obstruction engaging member normally disposed within said guard member as the cleaning device is inserted that end lirst into a hose to be cleaned, said guard member being free of tendency to puncture the hose, said obstruction engaging member, when obstruction is encountered, movable forwardly beyond said guard member and rotatable in response to actuation -of said handle, whereby an obstruction is engaged and subject to removal on Withdrawal of the cleanin-g device from the hose.

2. The cleaning device of claim 1 wherein said compression spring is a spiral spring surrounding the coextensive length of said cable.

3. The cleaning device of claim 2 wherein said stiffness imparting means is a relatively stiftr rod having one end secured to said handle, said rod extending in parallel relation with said coextensive length of said cable and within the convolutions of said spiral spring, the other end of said rod received within the adjacent end of said guide sheath.

4. The cleaning device of claim 1 wherein said guard member is tubular and has a concentric rigid tubular guide member therein terminating short of the for-ward end thereof, said cable extending through said tubular guide member, said obstruction engaging member normally bearing against the free end of said tubular guide member in response to the bias of said compression spring.

5. The cleaning device of claim 1 wherein said obstruction engaging member includes at least one radially extending hook element having a free end directed inwardly of the circle established by the radially outer portion of the hook element.

5 6 6. The cleaning device of claim 5 wherein said hook References Cited element is inclined forwardly of a plane normal to the UNITED STATES PATENTS axis of said cable at the point of attachment of said 0bstruction engaging member. 1261'444 4/1918 schied' 1,863,460 6/1932 Auringer. 7. The cleaning devlce of claim 1 whereln Sald 0b 5 2,128,822 8/1938 Home 15 104 2 tructlon engaglng member lncludes a tubu1ar hub mem- 2,694,822 11/1954 Murphy.

er recelved on the forward end of sald cable `and a plu- 2 739 585 3 /1956 Ayre rality `of spaced radially extending hook elements having free ends directed inwardly of the circle established by EDWARD L ROBERTS primary Examineh the radially outer portions of the hook elements, said 10 hook elements inclined forwardly of a plane normal to U.S. Cl. X.R.

the axis of said subular hub member. 15-104.16

US3445879D 1968-01-12 1968-01-12 Cleaning device for fragile flexible hose Expired - Lifetime US3445879A (en)

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Cited By (11)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3757375A (en) * 1971-08-18 1973-09-11 M Strom Obstruction removal apparatus
US4837887A (en) * 1988-02-02 1989-06-13 Mclaughlin Thomas L Power cleaning apparatus
US4866871A (en) * 1988-08-09 1989-09-19 Rivers Roy W Gun cleaner
US6276018B1 (en) * 1999-12-28 2001-08-21 Basil C. Leiman Flexible pipe cleaning device and system
EP1772562A1 (en) * 2005-10-07 2007-04-11 Dulevo International s.p.a. Device for suction of waste and similar
US20100229318A1 (en) * 2009-03-16 2010-09-16 Kelly Sparks Flexible, Finger-Mounted Cleaning Device
US8157919B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2012-04-17 Endoclear, Llc Methods for removing debris from medical tubes
US8382908B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2013-02-26 Endoclear, Llc Methods for cleaning endotracheal tubes
US9445714B2 (en) 2010-03-29 2016-09-20 Endoclear Llc Endotracheal tube coupling adapters
US10004863B2 (en) 2012-12-04 2018-06-26 Endoclear Llc Closed suction cleaning devices, systems and methods
US10016575B2 (en) 2014-06-03 2018-07-10 Endoclear Llc Cleaning devices, systems and methods

Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1261444A (en) * 1917-01-27 1918-04-02 Charles W Schied Tool for removing obstructions from plumbing-passageways.
US1863460A (en) * 1931-08-08 1932-06-14 Auringer George Pipe cleaner
US2128822A (en) * 1937-10-11 1938-08-30 Edward D Horne Brush
US2694822A (en) * 1952-03-11 1954-11-23 Murphy James Sewage pipe cleaner
US2739585A (en) * 1953-06-04 1956-03-27 Ayre James Ernest Instrument for obtaining cells for cytodiagnosis

Patent Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1261444A (en) * 1917-01-27 1918-04-02 Charles W Schied Tool for removing obstructions from plumbing-passageways.
US1863460A (en) * 1931-08-08 1932-06-14 Auringer George Pipe cleaner
US2128822A (en) * 1937-10-11 1938-08-30 Edward D Horne Brush
US2694822A (en) * 1952-03-11 1954-11-23 Murphy James Sewage pipe cleaner
US2739585A (en) * 1953-06-04 1956-03-27 Ayre James Ernest Instrument for obtaining cells for cytodiagnosis

Cited By (27)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3757375A (en) * 1971-08-18 1973-09-11 M Strom Obstruction removal apparatus
US4837887A (en) * 1988-02-02 1989-06-13 Mclaughlin Thomas L Power cleaning apparatus
US4866871A (en) * 1988-08-09 1989-09-19 Rivers Roy W Gun cleaner
US6276018B1 (en) * 1999-12-28 2001-08-21 Basil C. Leiman Flexible pipe cleaning device and system
CN1978791B (en) 2005-10-07 2012-10-10 杜勒沃国际股份公司 Device for suction of waste
EP1772562A1 (en) * 2005-10-07 2007-04-11 Dulevo International s.p.a. Device for suction of waste and similar
US20070079475A1 (en) * 2005-10-07 2007-04-12 Dulevo International, S.P.A. Device for suction of waste and similar
US7293327B2 (en) 2005-10-07 2007-11-13 Dulevo International, S.P.A. Device for suction of waste and similar
US8468637B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2013-06-25 Endoclear Llc Mechanically-actuated endotracheal tube cleaning device
US8157919B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2012-04-17 Endoclear, Llc Methods for removing debris from medical tubes
US8382908B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2013-02-26 Endoclear, Llc Methods for cleaning endotracheal tubes
US8381345B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2013-02-26 Endoclear, Llc Devices for cleaning endotracheal tubes
US8458844B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2013-06-11 Endoclear, Llc Medical tube cleaning apparatus
US9962233B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2018-05-08 Endoclear Llc Body-inserted tube cleaning
US8534287B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2013-09-17 Endoclear, Llc Methods for tracheostomy visualization
US8601633B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2013-12-10 Endoclear Llc Cleaning of body-inserted medical tubes
US9095286B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2015-08-04 Endoclear Llc Body-inserted tube cleaning
US9332891B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2016-05-10 Endoclear Llc Tracheostomy visualization
US9386907B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2016-07-12 Endoclear Llc Visualization systems and methods
US9398837B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2016-07-26 Endoclear Llc Methods for confirming placement of endotracheal tubes
US9907624B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2018-03-06 Endoclear Llc Body-inserted tube cleaning with suction
US9579012B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2017-02-28 Endoclear Llc Visualized endotracheal tube placement systems
US9855111B2 (en) 2009-02-06 2018-01-02 Endoclear Llc Methods of removing biofilm from endotracheal tubes
US20100229318A1 (en) * 2009-03-16 2010-09-16 Kelly Sparks Flexible, Finger-Mounted Cleaning Device
US9445714B2 (en) 2010-03-29 2016-09-20 Endoclear Llc Endotracheal tube coupling adapters
US10004863B2 (en) 2012-12-04 2018-06-26 Endoclear Llc Closed suction cleaning devices, systems and methods
US10016575B2 (en) 2014-06-03 2018-07-10 Endoclear Llc Cleaning devices, systems and methods

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