Title:
REFUSE COMPACTOR
United States Patent 3613566
Abstract:
A refuse compactor having a ram adapted to move downwardly into a drawer to compact refuse deposited in the drawer whereby a substantial quantity of refuse may be collected in a limited space. The compactor is adapted for use in a household kitchen for compacting household refuse. The drawer is provided with a movable sidewall permitting the user, such as a housewife, to remove the compressed refuse laterally from the drawer while yet arranging the drawer to define upright sidewalls to contain the refuse effectively positively therein during compacting thereof by the ram means. Manually operable means are provided for selectively latching the sidewall in the upright position. The refuse may be collected in a bag in the drawer whereby the compacted refuse therein may be readily removed by the lateral removal of the bag with the movable sidewall portion in a downwardly disposed arrangement.


Inventors:
Shapleigh Jr., Lloyd P. (Stevensville, MI)
Difley, Charles R. (Niles, MI)
Application Number:
04/867746
Publication Date:
10/19/1971
Filing Date:
10/20/1969
Assignee:
LLOYD P. SHAPLEIGH JR.
CHARLES R. DIFLEY
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
53/527, 100/229A, 100/255, 220/495.06, 229/122, 292/54, 312/322
International Classes:
B30B9/30; (IPC1-7): B30B15/32
Field of Search:
100/218,229A,226 229
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3537390REFUSE COMPACTOR1970-11-03Hinkel et al.
2970533Trash basket1961-02-07Allen
2468596Tiltable cabinet with holding mechanism1949-04-26Geis et al.
2261718Ledger tray1941-11-04Connor et al.
1712238Filing tray1929-05-07Welk
1498414Baling press1924-06-17Widell
0703688N/A1902-07-01
Primary Examiner:
Wilhite, Billy J.
Claims:
The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows

1. In a refuse compactor having wall means defining the front of a compacting space and having an opening, and ram means within said space for compacting refuse which selectively may be received in disposable bag means, drawer means for receiving refuse to be compacted, means for guiding said drawer means through said opening selectively to an exposed, refuse receiving position outwardly of said space, and an inner, refuse compacting position within said space wherein said ram means may compact refuse therein, said drawer means having a bottom wall and an upright wall defining an upwardly opening refuse receiving space therein wherein refuse is compacted by the ram means and urged downwardly forcible against said bottom wall, and means movable mounting a portion of said bottom and upright walls to permit movement thereof to lift said compacted refuse and provide access to said refuse receiving space from laterally thereof, thereby to facilitate freeing of compacted refuse from adhesion to the drawer means walls.

2. The refuse compactor structure of claim 1 wherein said movable wall portion comprises a minor portion of the upright wall of the drawer means.

3. The refuse compactor structure of claim 2 wherein said movably mounted wall portion comprises a first class lever which pivots about a fulcrum defined by said mounting means.

4. The refuse compactor structure of claim 3 including detent means selectively supporting the movable wall portion at an intermediate position of said wall portion and operable to permit the sidewall portion to be swung to a horizontal position when desired.

5. The refuse compactor structure of claim 1 wherein said mounting means comprises means movably mounting said wall portion at a position spaced above said bottom wall.

6. The refuse compactor of claim 1 wherein said mounting means comprises means hingedly mounting said wall portion at a lower portion thereof spaced above said bottom wall whereby said wall portion swings downwardly about a longitudinal axis from the upright position thereof.

7. The refuse compactor structure of claim 1 wherein said wall portion includes an integral bottom wall and turned side portions movable therewith.

8. The refuse compactor structure of claim 1 including rotatably manually operable latch means releasably locking said wall portion in the upright disposition.

9. In a refuse compactor having wall means defining the front of a compacting space and having an opening, and ram means within said space for compacting refuse which selectively may be received in disposable bag means, drawer means for receiving refuse to be compacted, means for guiding said drawer means through said opening selectively to an exposed, refuse receiving position outwardly of said space, and an inner, refuse compacting position within said space wherein said ram means may compact refuse therein, said drawer means including first and second wall portions and means movably associating said wall portions to define selectively a solely upwardly opening, laterally enclosed refuse receiving space, or an upwardly and at least partially laterally opening space, said drawer means being arranged to support the disposable bag means for receiving therein refuse delivered to said refuse receiving space, said second wall portion of the drawer means including a bottom wall for subjacently carrying said bag means and movable to dispose said bag means at least partially laterally of said refuse receiving space for facilitated removal thereof when said drawer means is arranged to define said laterally opening space.

10. The refuse compactor of claim 9 including means for pivotally mounting the second wall portion above the level of the bottom wall in the trash receiving position thereof whereby the bagged compacted trash is elevated as a result of the moving of the second wall portion to define said laterally opening space.

11. The refuse compactor of claim 9 wherein said bottom wall extends over a major portion of the horizontal cross section of said refuse receiving space.

12. The refuse compactor of claim 9 wherein said second wall portion includes spaced means for releasably holding said wall portions in said solely upwardly opening space-defining disposition and means for reinforcing said second wall portion between said holding means.

Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

This invention relates to refuse compactors and in particular to refuse compactors having a movable drawer for receiving refuse to be compacted.

2. Description of the Prior Art

In one improved form of refuse compactor, a drawer is movably carried in a cabinet structure for selective disposition within the compactor wherein refuse in the drawer is compacted by the operation of a ram means movably mounted within the cabinet. The drawer is movable to an exposed position permitting refuse to be delivered into the drawer for such compaction.

To facilitate removal of the refuse, the drawer may be lined with a suitable bag, such as a plastic lined paper bag, in which the refuse is deposited. It has been found that there is a tendency for the bag to stick to the sidewalls of the drawer thereby making it difficult for the user to remove the bag upwardly through the upper opening of the drawer. The drawer may be relatively deep and where the user comprises a relatively weak person, such as a housewife of perhaps less than average strength, difficulty has been encountered in the removal of the refuse-containing bag. The difficulty may be increased by the presence of any liquids which may infiltrate between the bag and drawer wall. When such liquids dry, they cause adhesion of the bag to the wall thus making it extremely difficult at times to remove the bag of relatively heavy compacted refuse.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention comprehends an improved refuse compactor of such a drawer type having new and improved means for facilitating the removal of the compacted refuse. More specifically, the invention comprehends the provision of a drawer means having upright walls normally defining the compaction space. During the compacting operation, the refuse is retained in the compaction space by the sidewalls against the substantial forces developed by the ram means of the compactor. When it is desired to remove the compacted refuse, however, a portion of the upright walls may be rearranged to permit the compacted refuse to be removed laterally from the compaction space rather than requiring that it be lifted upwardly therefrom as in refuse compactors of the prior art.

More specifically, the invention comprehends that a movable wall portion may comprise a sidewall of the drawer. The sidewall may be movably associated with the drawer as by hinge means. The hinge means is mounted at a lower portion of the movable sidewall whereby the sidewall may be pivoted downwardly from the upright position about the hinge means to provide the lateral accessibility to the refuse, eliminating the need for lifting a relatively heavy package of refuse a vertical height equivalent to the height of the upright walls of the drawer. The movable wall may be releasably latched in the upright position by suitable manually operated latch means.

The movable or tiltable wall portion may be provided with a bottom wall integrally associated therewith for carrying the refuse. Thus, when the wall portion is swung to the position wherein the compacting space is laterally accessible, the bottom wall may be moved therewith to bring the refuse at least partially outwardly from the compacting space for further facilitated removal thereof.

The movable wall portion may further include edge wall means telescoping into the refuse compacting space for further precluding adhesion of the compacted refuse to the stationary portion of the drawer.

The wall portion may be provided with suitable stiffeners for providing improved rigidity of the sidewall against the relatively large forces generated during the compacting operation.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

Other features and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawing wherein:

FIG. 1 is an isometric view of a refuse compactor provided with a drawer structure embodying the invention, the drawer being shown in the refuse receiving position;

FIG. 2 is an isometric view similar to that of FIG. 1 but with the drawer disposed in a position to provide lateral accessibility to the refuse compacting space;

FIG. 3 is a fragmentary vertical section taken substantially along the line 3--3 of FIG. 2 and with a bag of refuse carried by the movable wall portion of the drawer, and with an intermediate position of the movable wall portion of the drawer indicated in broken lines;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary enlarged vertical section illustrating the forward means for latching the movable wall portion in the upright position;

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary vertical section taken substantially along the line 5--5 of FIG. 1 showing the rearward means for latching the movable wall portion in the upright position; and

FIG. 6 is a fragmentary vertical section taken substantially along the line 6--6 of FIG. 1 showing the detent means for releasably holding the movable wall in an intermediate position.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

In the exemplary embodiment of the invention as disclosed in the drawing, a refuse compactor generally designated 10 is shown to comprise a cabinet 11 defining a front opening 12. A compacting ram means 13 is provided within the cabinet 11 for compacting refuse placed in a drawer generally designated 14. Drawer 14 is movable through opening 12 on a suitable guide 15 between a refuse receiving position as shown in FIG. 1 and a refuse compacting position wherein the drawer is fully received within the cabinet 11 in association with ram means 13, and ram means 13 may move downwardly into the drawer 14 to compact refuse therein. Illustratively, the compactor 10 may be utilized to compact household refuse, and thus may be installed in a household kitchen.

The present invention is concerned with the construction of drawer 14 to permit facilitated removal of the compacted refuse when desired. As shown in FIG. 1, in the refuse receiving and refuse compacting arrangement, drawer 14 is defined by upright wall means generally designated 16 and including a front wall 17, a first fixed sidewall 18, a rear wall 19, and a movable, or tiltable, sidewall 20. The drawer, as shown in FIG. 3, further includes a bottom wall 21 which cooperates with the upright wall means 16 to define an upwardly opening refuse receiving and compacting space 22. As best seen in FIG. 1, the refuse receiving space 22 is relatively deep so as to hold a substantial quantity of refuse. Illustratively, it has been found that such a refuse compactor may hold the normal household refuse accumulating over a relatively long period such as 3 to 5 days or more, thereby minimizing the work of transferring refuse from the household to outside the household for pickup by collectors. The drawer 14 may advantageously be lined with a suitable bag 23 for receiving the refuse and providing facilitated transfer of the compacted refuse from the compactor when desired. As shown in FIG. 1, the upper edge 24 of the bag may be provided with a cuff portion 24a, folded over the upright walls 17, 18, 19, and 20, for facilitated delivery of refuse into the bag and compaction of refuse in the bag. A pair of bag retainers 27 are secured to the drawer sidewalls 18 and 20, with upper edge portions 27a of the bag retainers being spaced from the walls of the drawer 14 to define slots 27b adapted to receive and retain the cuff portion 24a on the upper edge 24 of the bag 23.

As discussed above, difficulty is encountered at times in the removal of the bagged compacted refuse from conventional forms of such drawers. Conventionally, the bagged compacted refuse is removed from the drawer by application of an upward pull on the upper edge 24 of the bag. It has been found, however, that the relatively large forces exerted by the ram means 13 on the refuse force the bag 23 into intimate contact with the sidewalls and bottom wall of the drawer whereby bonding, or sticking, of the bag to the drawer walls may occur. This problem is aggravated where liquids infiltrate the bag material and subsequently dry between the bag and the drawer walls so as to effectively cement, or bond, the bag to the drawer walls. Further it has been found that in addition to the relatively heavy weight of such compacted or densified refuse, the bag may become wedged into frictionally locked engagement with the drawer walls as a result of uneven compaction of different refuse materials. Such adhesion, heavy weight, wedging, etc. have made it difficult for a user to remove the bag of compacted refuse, and where the user is a relatively weak person, such as a housewife of less than average strength, the problem is further aggravated.

In alleviation of this removal problem, the present invention comprehends the arrangement of the movable wall portion 20 so as to provide lateral access to the compaction space 22 as best seen in FIGS. 2 and 3. Thus, in the illustrated embodiment, sidewall 20 is hingedly carried in the drawer 14 by suitable hinge means such as a piano hinge 25 permitting the sidewall 20 to swing downwardly from the upright position of FIG. 1 to the laterally inclined position of FIGS. 2 and 3 wherein the bag 23 containing the compacted refuse may be readily laterally removed by the user. Sidewalls 18 and 20 may be provided with suitable stiffeners such as corrugated wall members 26 for reinforcing the wall against the substantial force generated by the ram means 13 during the compacting operations.

Movable wall 20 may be securely latched in the upright position by suitable manually operated latches 28 and 29 as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5 respectively. As shown, latch 28 includes a movable element 28a on the sidewall 20 and a fixed latch portion 28b on the front wall 17 of the drawer 14. Latch 29 includes a movable portion 29a on the rear wall 19 of the drawer and a fixed portion 29b on the sidewall 20. In the illustrated embodiment, the latches 28 and 29 comprise conventional window sash latches, it being understood that any suitable latching means capable of resisting the substantial forces generated by the ram means during the compacting operation may be used.

As best seen in FIGS. 2 and 3, the sidewall 20 further includes a bottom wall portion 30 extending inwardly from the lower end of the sidewall 20 and a pair of edge walls 31 and 32 extending transversely to space 22 from movable sidewall 20 toward fixed sidewall 18 to define a three-sided receptacle structure generally designated 33 effectively carrying the bagged compacted refuse to the readily accessible position of FIG. 3 when the receptacle structure 33 is swung outwardly as shown in FIG. 3. In this arrangement, the adhesion between the bag and the fixed sidewall 18 may be readily broken by an upward force caused by pivoting of the receptacle structure 33 tending to progressively release the bag from the sidewall 18 thereby facilitating the removal thereof. In effect, after the latches 28 and 29 are released, the receptacle structure 33 functions as a lever which pivots about a fulcrum defined by the hinge means 25 as force is applied to the upper edge of movable wall 20 to lift the heavy refuse bag 23 via wall portion 30 away from bottom wall 21. Further, as the structure 33 is inclined laterally, the bag may be subsequently removed from receptacle structure 33 by a lateral movement rather than requiring the relatively heavy bag of compacted refuse to be lifted vertically a substantial distance as where the sidewalls of the drawer are fixed in the upright position. By permitting the bag to be thus progressively separated from the drawer 14, the possibility of rupture of the bag during removal, with resultant further difficulty in transfer of the compacted refuse, is effectively minimized.

The illustrated embodiment may advantageously include detent means 33a to stop the pivotal movement of the receptacle structure 33 at an intermediate position indicated in broken lines in FIG. 3. In the illustrated embodiment, the detent means comprises a conventional spring loaded plunger type catch, or detent, 33a mounted at the rear of front wall 17 in a lower edge portion thereof and projecting into the path of movement of the receptacle structure 33 as shown in FIGS. 1 and 3. The detent means 33a provides a control of the pivotal movement of receptacle structure 33 preventing undesirable overshoot in the pivotal movement of the receptacle structure 33 with possible spillage of refuse. In the cleaning of receptacle structure 33, maximum access to the receptacle and drawer structure is desired and, thus, the plunger of detent 33a can be depressed and the receptacle structure 33 pivoted past the intermediate position (indicated in broken line in FIG. 3) to the position shown in FIG. 2, or if it be desired, beyond the position of FIG. 2 such as to provide access to drawer bottom wall 21.

The tilting of structure 33 to the laterally angled position further permits facilitated cleaning of the drawer when desired. As discussed above, from time to time, liquids may infiltrate the bag and, thus, maintenance of the drawer to remove any vestiges of refuse causing odors and the like is highly desirable.

In use, the bag 23 is firstly installed in the drawer, as shown in FIG. 1, with the upper cuffed portion 24a folded over the top of the upright walls 18, 19, and 20, to receive refuse through the open top of the drawer. Refuse deposited in the bag 23 is compacted by the ram means 13 so as to permit deposit of a substantial amount of refuse therein before the bag is filled, requiring removal thereof.

When it is desired to remove the compacted refuse, the user merely moves the drawer to the exposed position of FIG. 2, releases the latches 28 and 29, swings structure 33 from the position wherein the structure is telescoped into the space 22 within the walls 17, 18 and 19 of the drawer to the laterally inclined position of FIGS. 2 and 3, and removes the bag of compacted refuse as discussed above. Upon such removal, structure 33 is swung on the hinge 25 back to the upright position of FIG. 1 and latched in this position for subsequent further refuse reception and compaction.

The foregoing disclosure of specific embodiments is illustrative of the broad inventive concepts comprehended by the invention.