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Патент USA US2112263

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March 29, 1938. Y
gw. Aî BoHANNoN |=:r AL
2,112,263
ICE TRAY RACK
Filed June 9, 1936
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INVEN'ToRs
W/L L /AMAB UHA NN UN
BY °f1 C ARAB. G/L Em:
2,112,263
Patented Mar. 29, i938
UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE
William A. Bohannon and Clara B. Gilbert,
Hewlett, N1. E
Application June 9, 1936, serian No. time
,_
l
_
5 Claims.
This invention relates to tray racks for elec-4
trical or other types of refrigerators, is par-.
tícularly concerned with means for releasing the
frozen contents `of such trays by the introduc
5 tion of heat, and comprises improvements over
our co-pending i, application Serial-No. 47,260.
' filed October 29,` 1935, now Patent No. 2,061,891,
where frequently, it becomes firmly locked by u
moisture which accumulates and freezes on the
exterior of the tray. A still further objection,
which the present invention overcomes, is thev
tendency for the outer~ ice cubes to drop from
the rack whenA the rack is lifted from the tray.~
This is overcome in the present invention by the
as are outlined in said previous application, but
inclusion of bordering walls, whereby the cubes
are adequately held inthe rack until the rack
is inverted and the cubes are deposited where
are organized to provide a more eíiicient and
they are wanted.
easily operated device.- Further, we include cer-.
tain structural improvements in the device which
are designed to facilitate fabrication and reduce
well as in the previous'invention, it should be
granted November 24, 1936.'
The improvementsmeet the same objectives
costof production.
.
Generally, the invention comprises a removable
rack for insertion in a standard ice cube tray as
utilized in known types of refrigerators, the rack
preferably being made as a casting of non-fer»
rous metal, the rack including a plurality of lon
gitudinal and transverse Walls deñning substan~
tially cubical spaces open at the top and bottom.
In the previous application, a somewhat similar
structure is shown and described, but the rack
li. Q1 is not bordered by integral walls, whereas the
present invention includes such walls which are
adapted to make contact with the normal walls
of the ice tray within which the rack is fitted.
We embed electric heater elements in the border
walls of the rack-both longitudinal and trans
verse border walls-and also in certain of the
ln the present invention, as
pointed out that our construction overcomes cer
tain difficulties which are experienced with prior
art devices. In such prior art devices, heater
elements are provided in a tray having an in- .
tegral rack, and when such a tray is inverted for
the purpose of dumping the ice cubes, although
the cubes are no longer frozen to the rack or
-tray,. they will not drop out, due to the lack of
air relief on the bottomsf'ofV the cubes where thely
contact the bottom of the tray. In the present
invention, which utilizes a removable rack,- one
end of the ra’ck may be tilted with respect to the
tray, by which air relief is provided below the ice 25
cubes to expedite their removal. Thereupon, the
rack, with the contained cubes, may be removed
to aA suitable receptacle, inverœd, and the cubes
immediately drop out with no further ado.
This invention has for objects, the overcoming ,
of certain objections in the prior art devices, an'd
intermediate longitudinal walls so that, when
also to‘ provide a more effective and efficient ice
these heater elements are energized by the ap
plicatiori of electric current, the several walls
cube rack.
,~, in which heater elements are embedded are
quickly warmed,` and certain of those walls which
do not carry heater elements are likewise quickly ‘
warmed by conduction of heat from the heated
walls. In the embodiment described in said co
pending application, we found that certain diffi
culties arose. In that embodiment heater ele
ments are included in the longitudinaly walls
spaced from the sides of the ice tray, and it is
found that although frozen ice cubes are quickly
.i released from the central parts of the rack, re
lease`is delayed where the cubes contact lthe
sides of the tray itself, since heat transmission
is slow from the transverse rack walls to the tray
y
A further object of the'invention is to provide
a simple and readily fabricated structure by -~
which the rack may be produced economically.
The specific organization is clearly Vshown in
the accompanying drawing, in which:
Fig. l is a perspective view, partly broken
away, showing the rack construction;
Fig. 2 is a longitudinal section through the rack
and tray, being a ‘section on the line 2-2 of
Fig. 3;
being a section on the line 3-3 of Fig. 2;
Fig. 4 is a cross-section- of an alternative form
of rack wall;
of the heater elements, and
when the heater elements arev energized, an un
of said heater elements.
tray itself in an amount sufficient to defrost the
exteriorof said tray by which the tray ,as- a unit
can be readily. removed from the refrigerator
.
"
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary sideelevation of one
walls. A further difliculty is experienced with
the devices of the previous application since,
due length of time is consumed inwarming the
‘
Fig. 3 isa transverse section through the rack,
Fig. 6 is an enlarged tränsversesection >of one 50
The drawing `shows a‘conventional pressed
metal tray lll which normally is fabricated of a
non--ferrous~material such as aluminum, this
tray beingwell
standard.
Within
2
2,112,263
\
partment where, as is wellh known, trays are very
this -tray, the rack II is adapted for fitting en
'gagement, the rack comprising longitudinal apt to stick by virtue of the frosting of the
bordering w-alls I2 and I3, a transverse end Wall >mechanism whereby atmospheric moisture or in
I4 and a transverse end wall I5 through which advertent spillage from the -ice trays ñrmly
certain of the heater elements are adapted to -freezes the tray as a whole in the refrigerator,
extend. The rack further comprises a plurality making removal difficult. Therefore, this inven
of transverse intermediate walls I6 and, as shown, tion provides not only for ready removal of ice
cubes from a tray after it has been removed from
a central longitudinal wall I1,' although a plu
a refrigerator, but also permits of ready remov
< rality Vo_f s_uch walls I1 may obviously be pro
al of the tray as a unit from the refrigerator.
vided. The rack II comprises an integral c-ast
lAt one end of the rack, a well- 20 is provided,
ing of aluminum or other preferably non-ferrous
said well having a bottom wall 2| and serving
metal adapted for castingat relatively low tem
perature. Within the Walls I2, I3, and I1 are as a connection box vfor the terminal ends of the
embedded electric heater elements of commercial heater elements I8 and I9. This well is adapted
15 pattern, the preferable type of'heater element to be coveredby an'insulating plate 22 formed 15
comprising a ribbon of resistance Wire 30, wound nof molded plastic or the like, which plate is
upon a strip mica core 3l, the ribbon then being A"screwed by screws 23 to the rack, the vplate also
encased in mica 32 and the thus formed unit carrying connectors 24 from which Wires 25 ex
in turn encased in'a flat metallic tube 33 (see tend into the well 20 for connection to the heater
Figs. 5 and 6) which may conveniently be pressed
element terminals in a manner well known in the 20
around the mica. This form of heater unit is
adapted for operation at or subjection to rather
high temperatures, well in excess of the casting
art.
'
In Fig. 4 I show an alternate form of . rack wall,
containing a heater _element as described, this
' temperature of the non-ferrous metal comprising
wall having parallel upper surfaces 4I and 42
25 the rack. In the fabrication of the rack, then,
l the vheater elements whîch\are designated as to
t-act with the bottom of the ice tray. The flanges
the walls I2 and I3, as I8, and as to the wall
of this component 43 serve to effect good thermal
serted into openings in the rack walls or em-
contact between'the Wall and the tray and like
wise serve to lift the ice cubes with the rack when
the latter is removed from the tray, to break the 30
seal which normally exists between the surface of
the tray and the bottom of the ice cube.
The subject invention has been evolved as a
result of much experimentation, to provide a. de
vice which is commercially practicable and which
- is efficient in use, since prior art devices of the
bedded in the rackwalls with an-insulating ma
teri-al which, of course, not only acts as an elec
v of these respects.
I1, as I9, are supported by suitable chapletsin
the mold, and the molten metal is then cast to
30 form the rack and to embed the heater _elements
I8 and I9 in the rack material by which an ex
cellent thermo contact is established between the
rack Walls and the heater elements. This lcon
struction in itself is a distinct improvement over
prior constructions where heater elements are in
trical insulator but also as a thermal insulator.
40
and having a T-form base 43 adapted for con
It has been proven by experiment that it is
not only desirable but more or less essential that
1 same order have been found -wanting in both
While we have described our invention in detail
in its present preferred embodiment, it will be 40
obvious to those skilled in the art, after under
the heater elements be tightly sealed within _ standing our invention, that various changes and
the metal of the rack or grid. Should this be modifications may be made therein without de
not effected, condensation caused by extreme parting from the spirit or scope thereof. We
aim in the appended claims to cover all suon
45 temperature changes and transmitted by and
through the intervening air space, will ultimately modifications and changes.
ruin or destroy the heater elements. Hence
What is claimed is:
1. A removable ice-cube tray-rack adapted for
the adoption, as herein shown, of flat heater ele
ments, encased in a sheathing of metal around fitting engagement in a refrigerator ice-tray, said
which is cast the metal of _the tray. The shrink
rack being open top and. bottom and com- .
age of the metal, in cooling, develops a tre
prising side, end and partition walls arranged to
mendous pressure, which pressure, in and of define a plurality of substantially cubical spaces
itself, entirely and completely seals the elements
in place. Heat conductivity is accordingly great
ly increased by the pressures thus induced. By
virtue of this tight seal the time interval for
effecting heat transfer between the heater ele
ments and the walls of the rack is greatly re
duced, thus rendering the rack much- more ef
60
ñcient in its functioning.
_
~
The several walls of the rack are made of
tapered form lin cross-section, as shown, to pro
vide draft for the ice cubes by which they may.
easily be removed after their bond with the rack
65 has been _broken by the application of heat, and
the tapered conformation likewise permits of re
moval of the rack II from the tray I0 with the
ice cubes, after which the -rack may be inverted
within which ice is adapted to form, all of said
walls being wider in cross section at the bottom
than at the top, and'said side and end walls be
ing substantially coextensive with the correspond
ing side and end Walls of said tray whereby when
ice- is formed Within said rack adhesion between
it and the end and side walls of the tray is pre
vented, an electrical heater element housed in
each side and end wall of said rack. and a con
tact member carried by said rack and in electrical
Acommunication with said heater element.
2. A removable ice-cube tray-rack adapted for
ñtting engagement ‘ in a refrigerator ice-tray, 65
said rack being open top and bottom and com
prising side, end and partition walls arranged to
define a plurality of substantially cubical spaces
within which icesis adapted to form, said side
to discharge them. The longitudinal border walls
I2 and- I3"of the rack prevent inadvertent dis ~ and end walls being substantially coextensive with
charge of the ice cubes. Likewise, ‘these walls, the corresponding side and end. walls of said" tray
vsince they are in close thermal contact with whereby good thermal contactbetween saidwalls
the tray II), -permit of an eifective transfer of and extending substantially continuously around
' ,_ heat. to tlieîtray Il) byfwhich said tray may easily said rack is established,_electricallheaterfeleinents
ro
»be'withdrawnafrom alrefrigërator freezing com
housed `in each side and endivall _ofsaidrack
2,112,263
adapted, when energized, to break-the adhesion
`between the formed ice and the side and end
walls of said rack as well as the adhesion between
said walls and the corresponding wallsof said
tray, an additional heater element housed in one
yor more .of said partition walls`adapted, when
energized, to break the adhesion ,between the
formed ice and said partition walls, and a con
tact member carried by said rack and in electrical
10 communication with said heater elements.
3. In a removable ice-cube tray-rack adapted
for fitting engagement in a refrigerator ice-tray,
said rack being open top and bottom and com
prising side, end and partition walls arranged to
15 deñne a plurality of substantially cubical spaces
Within which ice is adapted to form, said side and
end walls being substantially coextensive with the
corresponding side- and eñd walls of said tray
whereby good thermal contact between said walls
20
and extending substantially continuously around
said ¿rack is established, a metal sheathed heater
element embedded in each side and end wall of
said rack adapted, when energized, to break the
adhesion between the formed ice and the'side
25 and end walls of said rack as well as the adhesion
between said walls and the corresponding walls
3
turally rigid side, end and partition walls ar
ranged to deñne. a plurality of substantially
cubical spaces within which ice-cubes are adapt
ed tov form, said partition walls being wider in
cross-section at the bottom than at the top where 5
by when said rack is bodily lifted from the tray
the ice-cubes are correspondingly lifted and held
from falling through the open bottom ends of said '
cubical spaces by the partition wall enlargements,
and means for introducing heat to said rack to
break adhesion between it and -the ice-cubes as.
welLas between it and the walls of saidtray, the
introduced heat, by radiation. being adapted also
to break adhesion between the ice-cubes and the
bottom of the tray.
'
5. A removable grid _adapted _for fitting en
gagement in a refrigerator ice-tray, said grid
v15
being open top and bottom and comprising side,
end and partition walls arranged'to deñne a plu- .
rality of spaces or compartments within. which
20
ice-cubes are adapted to form, said side and end -
walls being substantially coextensive with the.
corresponding side and end walls of said tray
whereby when ice is formed within said grid, ad
hesionl between it and the end and side walls of
the tray is prevented, an electrical heater ele-‘
of said tray, an additional metal sheathed heater
element housed in one or more of said partition `merit housed within a wall of said grid adapted _
by heat radiation to break the adhesion be
walls adapted, when energized, to break the ad
30 hesion between the formed ice and said partition ‘ tween the grid and the ice-cubes, between the
walls, and a contact member carried by said rack
and in electrical communication with said heater
elements.
4. As an article -of manufacture, a bodily re
0
movable ice-cube tray-rack adapted for fitting
engagement in a refrigerator ice-tray, said/rack
being open _top and bottom and comprising struc
grid and the tray and between the tray and the
ice-cubes, and a contact element carried by said
grid and in electrical communication with said
heater element and by means of which the in
30
troduction of heat to said grid is Lcontrolled.
WILLIAM A. BOHANNON.
CLARA B. GILBERT.
35
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