Title:
Safety hose system and method of manufacture
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A safety hose system for connecting an inlet connector of a washing machine to an outlet connector of a water supply. The safety hose system comprises an inner hose unit engaged with an outside hose unit. The inner hose unit comprises an inner hose having first and second end portions and a first channel to transport the flow of water from the water supply to the washing machine. The inner hose unit further comprises first and second fittings engaged with the first and second end portions of the inner hose. The outside hose unit comprising an outside hose having first and second end portions. The outside hose unit further comprises first and second connectors engaged with the outside hose. The outside hose unit is compressed to provide a positively biased force upon the first and second fittings to provide a sealed channel about the inner hose and to allow the first and second connectors to be engaged with the inlet connector of the washing machine and the outlet connector of the water supply, respectively. Upon fracture of the inner hose the water flows into the sealed channel.



Inventors:
Selby, William J. (Stoughton, MA, US)
Selby, Ronald A. (Canton, MA, US)
Application Number:
09/954479
Publication Date:
07/11/2002
Filing Date:
09/17/2001
Assignee:
SELBY WILLIAM J.
SELBY RONALD A.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
F17D5/04; (IPC1-7): G01M3/04
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
WALTON, GEORGE L
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WILLIAM E NOONAN (FORT MYERS, FL, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A safety hose system for connecting an inlet connector of a washing machine to an outlet connector of a water supply, the system comprises: (a) an inner hose unit comprising an inner hose having first and second end portions and a first channel to transport the flow of water from the water supply to the washing machine, said inner hose unit further comprises first and second fittings engaged with said first and second end portions of said inner hose; and (b) an outside hose unit comprising an outside hose having first and second end portions, said outside hose unit further comprising first and second connectors engaged with said outside hose, said outside hose unit being compressed to provide a positively biased force upon said first and second fittings to provide a sealed channel about said inner hose and to allow said first and second connectors to be engaged with the inlet connector of the washing machine and the outlet connector of the water supply, respectively, whereby upon fracture of said inner hose the water flows into said sealed channel.

2. The system of claim 1, wherein said outside hose unit further comprises first and second pre-mold inserts engaged with said first and second end portions of said outside hose, each of said first and second pre-mold inserts comprise first and second end portions and a cavity portion.

3. The system of claim 2, wherein said outside hose unit further comprises first and second end-cap members engaged with said first and second pre-mold inserts and said first and second end portions of said outside hose, respectively.

4. The device of claim 3, wherein each of said first and second end-cap members comprise a shroud portion engaged with said first and second connectors, respectively.

5. The system of claim 4, wherein said outside hose unit further comprising a drain tube member in communication with said sealed channel.

6. The system of claim 5, wherein said first insert further comprising a drain inlet portion.

7. The system of claim 6, wherein said drain tube member comprises a first end portion engaged with said drain tube inlet portion and a second end portion engageable with the drain pipe.

8. The system of claim 7, wherein said first and second end-cap members are substantially rigid.

9. The system of claim 8, wherein said first and second pre-molds inserts are substantially rigid.

10. The system of claim 9, wherein said first and second pre-molds inserts and said first and second end cap members are made from a thermosetting material.

11. The system of claim 10 wherein said outside hose is made from a plastic material and is formed to having a plurality of corrugations.

12. A process for manufacturing a safety hose system comprising the steps of: (a) providing an inner hose having first and second end portion; (b) attaching a first fitting to said first end portion of said inner hose; (c) providing an outside hose unit having first and second connectors; (d) passing said second end portion of said inner hose through said outside hose unit; (e) pulling said second end portion to engage said first connector with said first fitting; (f) compressing said outside hose unit; (g) cutting said second end portion of said inner hose to provide a cut end portion; (h) attaching a second fitting to said cut end portion; and (i) releasing said outside hose unit to engage said first connector with said first fitting and said second connector with said second fitting.

13. The method of claim 12, further comprising the step of inserting first and second washers into said first and second connector members, respectively.

Description:

REFERENCE TO OTHER APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application is a continuation-in-part of application Ser. No. 09/687,566, filed on Oct. 13, 2000, now pending.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] U.S. Pat. No. 6,039,066 discloses a safety hose system for use with a washer machine to prevent spillage of water resulting from failure of the primary hot water hose. Safety hose systems of the type exemplified by U.S. Pat. No. 6,039,066 are difficult to manufacture at a low cost while maintaining durability and reliability.

OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION

[0003] The primary object of the present invention is to provide a reliable and durable safety hose system.

[0004] Another object of the present invention is to provide a safety hose system that is less expensive and easier to manufacture than conventional systems.

SUMMARY OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

[0005] A safety hose system for connecting an inlet connector of a washing machine to an outlet connector of a water supply. The safety hose system comprises an inner hose unit disposed within an outside hose unit. The inner hose unit comprises an inner hose having first and second end portions and a first channel to transport the flow of water from the water supply to the washing machine. The inner hose unit further comprises first and second fittings engaged with the first and second end portions of the inner hose. The outside hose unit comprises an outside hose having first and second end portions. The outside hose unit further comprises first and second connectors engaged with the outside hose. The outside hose unit is compressed to provide a positively biased force upon the first and second fittings to provide a sealed channel about the inner hose and to allow the first and second connectors to be engaged with the inlet connector of the washing machine and the outlet connector of the water supply, respectively. Upon fracture of the inner hose the water flows into the sealed channel.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0006] The following detailed description of the invention will be better understood with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:

[0007] FIGS. 1 and 2 are perspective view of the safety hose system;

[0008] FIG. 3 is a cross-section view taken along line 2-2 of FIG. 1;

[0009] FIG. 4 is an enlarged partial cross-section view of the safety hose system;

[0010] FIG. 5 is a cross-section view of the fitting that is engaged to each end of the inside hose;

[0011] FIG. 6 is a top plan view of a pre-mold insert;

[0012] FIG. 7 is an side elevation view of the pre-mold insert;

[0013] FIG. 8 is a cross-section view of the pre-mold insert taken along line 8-8 of FIG. 6;

[0014] FIG. 9 is a flow chart showing a first embodiment of a process for manufacturing the safety hose system of the present invention; and

[0015] FIG. 10 is a flow chart showing a first embodiment of a process for manufacturing an outside hose unit of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0016] Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, wherein a pair of safety hose systems 10 of the present invention are shown connected between a washing machine 130 having hot and cold water inlet connectors 132 and 134 and hot and cold water supply connectors 136 and 138, respectively. The safety hose system 10 generally comprises an inner hose unit 12 engaged to and within an outside hose unit 50. The inner hose unit 12 generally comprises an inner hose 14 suitable for transporting hot and/or cold water to the washing machine 130. The outside hose unit 50 generally comprises an outside hose 54 and first and second connector assemblies 102 and 114. The outside hose unit 50 is compressed to provide a positively biased force to maintain engagement with the inner hose unit 12 and to provide a sealed channel 140 about the inner hose 14 and to allow the first and second connector assemblies 102 and 114 to be engaged with the inlet connector 132 of the washing machine and the outlet connector 136 of the water supply, respectively. The outside hose unit 50 further comprises a drain tube or hose 84 in communication with the sealed channel 140. Also shown is a drain pipe 144 having a drain pipe adaptor 146. The drain pipe adaptor 146 comprises a plurality of drain ports 148. Upon fracture of the inner hose 14 the water flows into the sealed channel 140, out the drain tube 84, and into the drain pipe adaptor 146 and the drain pipe 144, thereby preventing any spillage of water on the surrounding floor.

[0017] Referring to FIGS. 3-8, the inner hose unit 12 comprises an inner hose 14 having a channel portion 16, a first end portion 18, and second end portion 20. The inner hose unit 12 further comprises a first fitting 22 having a flange portion 24 and an end portion 26. The end portion 26 has a channel portion 28 and an annular recess portion 30. The first end portion 18 is engaged within the annular recess portion 30 and crimped together with a first inside/outside crimp 32. The inside/outside crimp 32 may be formed using conventional crimping machines. The inner hose unit 12 further comprises a first o-ring 34 mounted adjacent to the flange portion 24. The inner hose unit 12 further comprises a second fitting 36 having a flange portion 38 and an end portion 40. The end portion 40 has a channel portion 42 and an annular recess portion 44. The second end portion 20 is engaged within the annular recess portion 44 and crimped together with a second inside/outside crimp 46. The inside/outside crimp 46 may be formed using conventional crimping machines. The inner hose unit 12 further comprises a second o-ring 48 mounted adjacent to the flange portion 38. The inner hose 14 is preferably made from rubber and is available as Part No. 5-IN38BS, from Good Year Tire and Rubber, Co., Atlanta, Ga. 30384. The first and second fittings 22 and 36 are available as Part No. 9-SM8538-NF from Winzeler Stamping, Co., Montpelier, Ohio. The first and second O-rings 34 and 58 available as Part No. 5-3001-RING from AME, Corporation, 195 Towaco, N.J. 07082.

[0018] The outside hose unit 50 generally comprises an outside hose unit 52 and first and second connector assemblies 102 and 114. The outside hose unit 52 comprises an outside hose 54 having a first end portion 56 and a second end portion 58. The outside hose 58 is preferably made from corrugated plastic and is available as Part No. 5-3001-6B from Global Med, Inc., 155 North Murphy Street, Trenton, Ontario, Canada. The outside hose unit 52 further comprises a first pre-mold insert 60 and a second pre-mold insert 72. The first pre-mold insert 60 comprises a first end portion 62, a second end portion 64, a cavity portion 66, an opening 68, and a drain tube inlet portion 70. The drain inlet portion 70 comprises a flanged mounting portion 82 having an opening or channel 83 in communication with the cavity portion 66. The second pre-mold insert 72 comprises a first end portion 74, a second end portion 76, a cavity portion 78, and an opening 80. In the embodiment of FIGS. 3 and 4, the second pre-mold insert 72 does not have a drain tube inlet portion. The first and second pre-mold inserts 60 and 72 are preferably molded from a low density polyethylene available under the brand name Tek Run 4200 by Teknor Apex of Pawtucket, R.I. The first and second pre-mold inserts 60 and 62 may be molded using a 3.5 ton hydraulic mechanical and vertical molding machine available as Part No. WDHS-35-S1 from Autojector Corporation of P.O. Box 709, Auillay, Ind., 46170, and at a temperature of about 420 Fahrenheit for about thirty (30) second cycles.

[0019] The outside hose unit 52 further comprises a first drain tube or hose tube 84 having a first end portion 86 and a second end portion 88. The first end portion 86 of first drain hose 84 is engaged with and about the flanged mounting portion 82 of the drain tube inlet portion 70 and the second end portion 88 is connected to a port 148 of the drain pipe adaptor 146 (FIG. 1). The drain tube 84 is available as Part No. 5-3001-6N from Global Med, Inc. 155 North Murphy Street, Trenton, Ontario, Canada.

[0020] The outside hose unit 52 further comprises first and second molded end-cap members 90 and 96. The first molded end cap member 90 comprises a first end portion 92 and a second end or shroud portion 94. The second molded end-cap member 96 comprises a first end portion 98 and a second end portion 100. The first and second molded end cap members 90 and 96 are molded to the first and second end portions 18 and 21 of the inner hose 14 and the first and second pre-mold inserts 60 and 72, respectively. The first and second molded end cap members 90 and 96 are preferably made from a low density polyethylene available under the brand name Tek Run 4200 by Teknor Apex of Pawtucket, R.I. The first and second end-cap members 90 and 96 may be molded using a 3.5 ton hydraulic mechanical and vertical molding machine available as Part No. WDHS-35-S1 from Autojector Corporation of P.O. Box 709, Auillay, Ind., 46170, and at a temperature of about 420 Fahrenheit for about thirty (30) second cycles.

[0021] The first connector assembly 102 comprises a female connector 104, a tube portion 106, and a ferrule member 108. The ferrule member 108 has a cavity portion 110. The shroud end portion 94 is engaged within the cavity portion 110 and about the tube portion 106 and crimped together with an inside crimp 112. The inside crimp 112 may be formed using conventional crimping machines. The second connector assembly 114 comprises a female connector 116, a tube portion 118, and a ferrule member 120. The ferrule member 120 has a cavity portion 122. The shroud end portion 100 is engaged within the cavity portion 122 and about the tube portion 118 and crimped together with an inside crimp 124. The inside crimp 124 may be formed using conventional crimping machines. Female connector 104 and 116 are purchased with tube portions 106 and 118 engaged thereon, respectively, and are available as Part No. 9-1485-NF from Winzeler Stamping, Montpelier, Ohio. The ferrule members 108 and 129 are available as Part No. 9-7400-NF from Winzeler Stamping, Montpelier, Ohio 43543.

[0022] A first rubber washer 126 is disposed within the female connector 104 and adjacent the flange portion 24 of the first fitting 22. A second rubber washer 128 is disposed within the female connector 116 and adjacent the flange 38 of the second fitting 36. The first and second washers are available as Part No. 5-3001-Washer from Jasper rubber Products, Inc., 1010 First Avenue, Jasper, Ind. 47547.

[0023] Referring to FIG. 9, wherein a process for manufacturing the safety hose system 10 of the present invention is shown. As indicated by block 802, the process comprises the step of providing an inner hose having first and second end portions. As indicated by block 804, the process comprises the further step of attaching a first fitting to the first end portion of the inner hose. As indicated by block 806, the process comprises the further step of providing an outside hose unit having first and second connectors. As indicated by block 808, the process comprises the further step of passing the second end portion 20 of the inner hose 14 through the outside hose unit 50. As indicated by block 810, the process comprises the further step of pulling the second end portion 20 to engage the first connector 104 with the first fitting 22. As indicated by block 812, the process comprises the further step of compressing the outside hose unit 50. As indicated by block 814, the process comprises the further step of cutting the second end portion 20 of the inner hose 14 to provide a cut or finished end portion 21. As indicated by block 816, the process comprises the further step of attaching a second fitting 36 to the cut or finished end portion 21. As indicated by block 818, the process comprises the further step of releasing the outside hose unit 50 to engage the first connector 104 with the first fitting 22 and the second connector 116 with the second fitting 36.

[0024] Referring to FIG. 10, and as indicated by block 902, the step of providing an outside hose unit 50 having first and second connectors assemblies 102 and 114 further comprises the step of cutting the outside hose 54 to a specified length. As indicated by block 904, the step of providing an outside hose unit 50 having first and second connectors assemblies 102 and 114 further comprises the step of providing first and second pre-mold inserts 60 and 72. As indicated by block 906, the step of providing an outside hose unit 50 having first and second connectors assemblies 102 and 114 further comprises the step of inserting the outside hose 54, the first and second pre-mold inserts 60 and 72 and the drain tube interconnect member 82 into a mold. As indicated by block 908, the step of providing an outside hose unit 50 having first and second connectors assemblies 102 and 114 further comprises the step of molding the end portions 56 and 58 of the outside hose 54, the second pre-mold inserts 60 and 72, and the drain tube interconnect member 82, to form first and second end cap members 90 and 96. As indicated by block 910, the step of providing an outside hose unit 50 having first and second connectors assemblies 102 and 114 further comprises the step of removing the outside hose unit 50 from the mold.

[0025] The foregoing description is intended for purposes of illustration. The invention may be embodied in other forms or carried out in other ways without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention. Modifications and variations still falling within the spirit or the scope of the invention will be readily apparent to those of skill in the art.