The present invention refers to a support which has been created indistinctly for the cleaning or storage of wine casks during the wine aging.
The purpose of this invention is to achieve a support that apart from storing conveniently a fixed number of casks, allowing a free rotation on their own axis and also allowing piling it up on top of other similar supports. This support is made of a structure that can be dismantled in order to drastically reduce its volumetric occupation for storage and transport, requiring only fast and easy manoeuvre for the assembling and dismantling of its components.
The invention relates therefore to the field of installations for the aging of wines, and more precisely, the accessories that facilitate the storage of casks, and where appropriate, the cleaning of the same.
As it is known, metallic supports are used to store casks in the cellars, made of piled structures that form “beds” to hold the respective casks, and there are supports that only have one bed, for a single cask, and supports with two beds laterally adjacent, for two casks.
These supports incorporate lower legs which hold on the floor, and they constitute parallel ways of mortise joints between the supports when piling-up the same.
It is also known that each of the mentioned “beds” incorporate, as a way of supporting the cask, wheels which have free rotation on the metallic structure, allowing an easy turn of the casks.
There are channeled supports outlined in “U” when these are piled up directly among them, and other supports outlined in “Y”, which are used for casks piled up using the herringbone method.
All these have as a common denominator the fact that the said structure is rigid and occupies the same space when the support is being used and when it is not being used. This brings about the fact that the volumetric occupation is excessive when storing and transporting the same, and therefore not very useful due to the fact that the space occupation of the support affects directly and substantially to the transport costs and the storage costs when the supports are empty.
On the other hand, it would also be desirable that the cask supports could be used in the process of cleaning the said casks, but the supports that are well-known up to now, due to their special system of mortise joints, do not allow this possibility.
The support for cleaning and storage of the casks that this invention suggests, resolves satisfactorily the problems exposed before, in the different aspects already mentioned.
In that sense and in a concrete way, the support that we promote consists of the combination of the three basic parts, an intermediate part which works as a pallet and which is provided in its upper side with a way to settle, and where appropriate, to spin round the casks for which the support has been thought of, for example four, and this intermediate part is complemented by two side parts which give to the support, as a whole, a channeled cross section “U” but with the peculiarity that these three parts are fixed together with screws, allowing therefore an easy assembly and disassembly.
In a more concrete way, the constituent cross sections of the side parts incorporate large lower expansions which work as legs, and these show the peculiarity of incorporating in its inner edge a gradual reduction for the correct settlement of the central part, that is, the said pallet.
If the thickness of the above-mentioned legs coincide with the one of the cross sections that forms the pallet, this makes that the position among the three parts can be very easily reached to achieve that the screws of every part can simultaneously go through the holes of the others.
The mentioned legs are positioned in correspondence with the endings of every lateral part and in correspondence with its middle area. This way the assembled support offers a great structural resistance.
According to other features of this invention, the mentioned side parts of the support are finished off in their upper endings in angular cross-sections, straight and with a length similar to the one of the support, and its cavities are orientated towards the inside, and their endings are closed, making it a holding support which assures a correct assembly and perfect stability for the immediately upper support and for the piling up of the supports.
It is also worth mentioning that, as a consequence of the structure of pallet-type at the base of the support, this can rest over a conveyor belt in order to automate the cleaning of the casks.
In order to improve the description and to help to a better understanding of the invention features, it is included in this report as an integral part of the description, a set of drawings where it is represented in an illustrative but not limiting way the following:
FIG. 1. By means of a perspective general representation, shows a support for cleaning and storage of the casks, purpose of this invention.
FIG. 2. It shows a partial perspective detail of the whole, as represented in the above figure, in parts.
FIG. 3. It shows, in a perspective view, a detail of the inside but amplified in the area where the basic central part and one of the side parts are joined together.
In the above-mentioned figures, especially in FIG. 2, can be observed how the support that we are promoting here comprises three basic parts, a central part (1) and two side parts (2.2′).
The central part is set up by a type of pallet made of metallic cross-sections, specifically panels (3) and cross pieces (4) duly fixed to each other, for example by way of welding them, determining a three-dimensional part with two parallel planes put on top, relating between them through intermediate separators (5), in order to achieve a rigid structure with reduced weight, which can also allow an easy access by any of its sides for the pitchfork of a lift-truck or similar.
The cask supports will be held on the basic structure or intermediate part, which in the drawing shown as an example takes the form of wheels (6) four for every cask, and they allow a free rotation of the same over the support.
This pallet (1) is complemented with the mentioned side parts (2-2′) to adapt the channeled configuration that FIG. 1 shows, and each of these sides is organised (2-2′) by couples of vertical bars and endings (7), an intermediate bar (7′), intermediate diagonal angle that holds the structure (8) and a couple of panels (9-10), welded together, with the peculiarity that each of the above mentioned vertical bars (7-7′), incorporate at their lower ending a large internal expansion (11) similar to a type of leg, with a gradual reduction in the inner area (12) which constitutes the support base of the pallet (3) through the lower and corresponding vertex (13). This way it can be achieved a correct position among the pieces at the moment of joining them, and they are all joined with screws (14) and with the help of complementary nuts (15)
This way it can be achieved an assembly/disassembly among the three basic parts of the support, very quick and easy, as well as being reliable and effective.
As it can be seen in FIG. 2, the intermediate widening (11) of each lateral (2-2′) of the support is considerably bigger that the widening at the endings (11) and this does not have a gradual reduction (12) due to the fact that these intermediate legs (11) do not have a centre effect and their bigger dimensions allow a more solid fixing to the middle area of the pallet (1) also by way of screwing the parts.
As mentioned before, the sides (2-2′) of the support are finished off at the top of the panels (10) and they take the form of angular cross-sections, with their lower part in horizontal position and their upper part in vertical position, and the concavity orientated towards the cross-section (10), in the opposite position, in a way that the angular cross-sections (10) and its closed endings (16) constitute the base for settling another support, piling up among them and assuring a perfect stability.
As it can be seen from the above, during the storage and transport of the supports, these are taken apart and the three parts that comprise it are independent from one another, allowing a parallel fitting among them and reducing the volumetric space of the same. This, in consequence, leaves space during the storage and transport of the casks.