Patent No. 2756917A: Valve For Counter Pressure Filling Apparatus

Today in 1956, US Patent 2756917 A was issued, an invention of John T. Kline, for his “Valve For Counter Pressure Filling Apparatus.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

Briefly outlined they are as follows: The charged liquid is supplied to a reservoir by piping connected to a continuous source of supply forming a closed circuit; air or gas under pressure, such as carbon dioxide, is also supplied to the reservoir by suitable piping leading from a continuous source forming a closed circuit, thereby providing a head above the liquid in the reservoir; and a plurality of filling heads, each one of which contains a rotary fiat valve and means to temporarily seal the containers, is joined to the bottom of the reservoir and connected with the interior thereof by suitable piping to permit removal of the liquid and/ or the air or gas confined therein. By positioning the valve in each filling head in a predetermined pattern, a filling sequence is accomplished which permits the filling of the containers without excessively foaming or effervescing the liquid. This sequence consists of temporarily sealing the container to the filling head; then positioning the valve to permit the air or gas under pressure in the reservoir, commonly called counter pressure, to enter into the container to equalize the pressure between them; then positioning the valve to permit the liquid in the reservoir to enter into the container under its normal hydrostatic pressure and to return the air or gas (counter pressure) in the container back to the reservoir as it is being displaced by the liquid; then positioning the valve to out off the flow of the liquid and the air or gas (counter pressure) to and from the container; then exhausting any air or gas remaining in the container and finally permanently sealing the container.

My invention, while relating generally to apparatus for transferring gaseous liquids from a source of supply to containers, specifically relates to the rotary fiat valve employed by such apparatus and is specifically directed to the method employed in conveying the liquid and air or gas from the reservoir to the container.


Beer Birthday: Jonathan Surratt

Today is the 41st birthday of Jonathan Surratt. Jonathan launched the Beer Mapping Project and also runs the website for DRAFT magazine. He also created National Growler Day, though its exact date from year to year is still fluid, and he’s a twitter diva, too. Join me in wishing Jonathan a very happy birthday.

Horse Brass publican Don Younger bookended by Jonathan’s wife Robin and Jonathan, displaying his excellent taste in attire.

Jonathan & Robin Surratt Sandwiched by Sean Paxton
Jonathan with Sean Paxton and Jonathan’s wife Robin at GABF a few years ago.

Jonathan, Ray McCoy, Robin, and Ray’s wife, Cornelia Corey.

A self-portrait with Matt, from Oakshire Brewing, Jonathan, and me at the Goose Island cask event during CBC in 2010.

Michael Roper, owner of the Hopleaf, Jonathan, and Wendy Littlefield, from Vanberg & DeWulff, when we had dinner there a few years agp.

Patent No. 1235231A: Apparatus For Cooling And Rousing Beer-Wort And For Precipitating Sludge From Same

Today in 1917, US Patent 1235231 A was issued, an invention of Leopold Nathan, for his “Apparatus for Cooling and Rousing Beer-Wort and for Precipitating Sludge from Same.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

In the brewing of beer, especially in breweries in which special stress is laid on the production of high-class beers, the cooler is still in almost general use for cooling down the worts. The cooler, however, constitutes the primary and worst source of infection in the preparation of beer. Owing to the very rapid cooling of. the wort in the cooler, germs which have settled down on the cooler before it is charged with wort are not all killed. Moreover, fresh germs make their appearance during the cooling process, and these are not killed, especially at temperatures from 60 downward.

In spite of these defects of the cooler, it has been impossible hitherto, owing to its valuable properties for certain special types of beer, to dispense with this appliance. In addition to the cooling effect produced in the cooler, vapors are eliminated which carry off with them unpleasant odors formed in consequence of the inevitable access of air. Through the access of air and simultaneous cooling, considerable quantities of protein substances and hop resins are precipitated, and the only way in which these can be separated from the liquid is by allowing them to settle down, for which purpose the extensive surface of the cooler is highly advantageous.

The method employed by me in connection with the apparatus of the present invention consists in the first place in freeing the wort from the said aromatic and flavoring substances by the passage of a current of air or carbon dioxid, or both. If, as was hitherto the case, in this treatment the gas be forced or drawn into the wort from below, a very strong frothing is produced, which prevents the complete removal of the vapors.

The operation is directed, in the first place, to preventing this frothing or to nullifying its ill effects. With this object, the gas is carried, in a powerful current, along the wort in a finely-divided state so as to carry off the vapors from the surface of the liquid. At the same time a cooling effect is also produced; nevertheless the essential portion of the elimination effect can only be accomplished fully by treating the hot wort with a current of gas. The complete deposition of the cooler sludge, occurring as cooling progresses, is facilitated in a special manner, and the possibility of carrying it out in a closed, sterile vessel is afforded, by setting up in said vessel a frame containing a large number of superimposed stages having a total superficial area corresponding to that of the cooler. In order to remove the sludge this staged frame must be taken out of the vessel. The resulting infection is neutralized by allowing the next charge of wort to run into the vessel in a sufficiently hot condition.

This operation can be carried out in two vessels: one for the elimination treatment and one for the deposition of the sludge; or one and the same vessel may be used for both purposes.


Beer In Ads #1633: Early American

Thursday’s ad is for Ballantine Ale, from 1940. A bottle of Ballentine Ale sits in front of a framed picture of a 100-year old ship to celebrate Ballantine’s 100th anniversary. In fact, the ship is coming out of the frame, as is a red flag/handkerchief/whatever, which is actually pretty cool. The subheading, “The Flavor of Ballantine’s Ale is a Century Old — A Century Great” seems odd. I know they don’t mean it this way, but it strikes me that they’re saying the flavor is old, 100 years old, which doesn’t seem like much of a compliment.


Beer Birthday: Dr. Bill

Today is also the 53rd birthday of William Sysak, better known to the beer community as Dr. Bill. Dr. Bill’s massive tastings are the stuff of legends, and he’s now transported them — albeit on a smaller scale — to working at Stone Brewing’s World Bistro & Gardens. He has impeccable taste, be it in beer, wine, whisky, cigars, what have you, and is one of the most fun people to taste with. Join me in wishing Bill a very happy birthday.

Dr. Bill and me sharing a plate of frites before the final judging at the Hard Liver Barleywine Festival in 2008.

Dr. Bill with Matt Bonney, from Brouwer’s/Bottleworks in Seattle at Slow Food Nation 2008 at Fort Mason.

Dr. Bill at Falling Rock, hosting one of his legendary tastings, during GABF in 2006.

Dr. Bill’s player’s card when he joined Stone Brewing.

Patent No. 533747A: Beer-Cooling Device

Today in 1895, US Patent 533747 A was issued, an invention of Otto Ritter, for his “Beer-Cooling Device.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

My invention relates to a beer cooling apparatus, the object of my invention being to so construct an apparatus as that when the wort or beer is passed through said apparatus it will operate a fan, which fan by its rotation sprays and cools the beer.

A further Object of my invention is to so gear the fan upon the central shaft as that said fan will rotate with greater rapidity than does the shaft.

My improved beer cooling apparatus is adapted to be located in an inclosure which is generally located in the top of brew houses, the beer being forced to said inclosure by a pump, or other suitable means, there to be passed through the apparatus and into the vats or pans adapted to receive it.

My invention consists in a suitable hollow casting adapted to besnpported in a position above the beer cooling receptacle, a shaft mounted vertically in said casting, a series of discharge nozzles or apertures located in said casting, a motor or turbine-wheel mounted to receive the beer that is discharged from said nozzles or apertures and to be revolved by the pressure of the beer, anda fan driven by and located below the said motor or turbine wheel in position to receive the beer sprayed above said fan by the movement ot’ said parts.


Patent No. 3749004A: Apparatus For Crushing And/Or Compacting

Today in 1973, US Patent 3749004 A was issued, an invention of William G. Pagdin and Charles F. Constable, assigned to the Schlitz Brewing Co., for their “Apparatus for Crushing and/or Compacting.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

The invention relates to that type of crushing and/or compacting machine or apparatus wherein a plurality of sets or pairs of opposing crushing rollers are arranged in series. Broadly according to the invention, a frame rotatably supports one roller from each set of rollers. The other roller from each set of rollers is rotatably supported by a member movable relative to the frame and the frame supported rollers. The rollers supported by the movable member move with that member relative to the frame supported rollers to provide for relief from shock loading between the sets of opposing rollers. Relative movement between the opposing rollers to relieve shock loading there between is resisted by resilient means.


Beer Birthday: Tom Peters

My good friend Tom Peters, one of the owners of Monk’s Cafe and Belgian Beer Emporium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, turns 61 today. His enthusiasm for and promotion of Belgian beer has few equals. A couple of years ago, I was privileged to travel through France and Belgium with Tom, which was amazing. And he throws perhaps the best late night parties of anyone I’ve ever known. Join me in wishing Tom a very happy birthday.

Tom Peters with Dave Keene, owners of the best two Belgian beer bars on both coasts.

Shaun O’Sullivan from 21st Amendment, Fergie Carey, co-owner of Monk’s, Lucy Saunders, the beer cook, and Tom Peters.

Tom Peters, with Rob Tod from Allagash in Portland, Maine, at GABF.

Me and Tom Peters
Me and Tom after the Great Lambic Summit at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archeology & Anthropology during last year’s Philly Beer Week.

In Belgium, with a perfectly poured Orval, with Daniel Neuner, William Reed and Justin Low.

Also in Belgium, with a Fanta and Frites sandwich.

Patent No. 1138251A: Mash-Filter Plate

Today in 1915, US Patent 1138251 A was issued, an invention of Joseph Schaefer, for his “Mash-Filter Plate.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

My invention relates to mash filters adapted for use in the arts of brewing, distilling or in the manufacture of compressed yeast, and in part is a continuation of my sugars and soluble matter are more completely removed from the lower part of the grains cakes because of the greater water pressure in the lower part of the frames. This results in the loss of more or less of the valuable sugars unless an excessive amount of water is used. The use of too much water is not desirable since this dilutes the wort to such an extent, that, to remove the excess of water, extended boiling is required which, it should be understood, is expensive and detrimental to the final product. To overcome these objections I have arranged the water chambers so that the grains cakes formed there between will be thicker at the bottom than at the top, or substantially trapezoidal in shape. It has been found that with cakes of this shape the sparging 18 more thorough, and with the use of a given quantity of water-the soluble sugars are more formaly and completely removed from the grains cakes.

Another object of my invention is .to facilitate the removal of the grains cakes from their frames when the sparging process is completed, and the series of frames are separated for this purpose. The frame as ordinarily constructed is provided with a flat floor or bottom from which ‘it is difficult to dislodge that part of the cake resting on the bottom, it usually being necessary’ for the workman to scrape it of with a paddle or other device. With my improved construction I overcome this objection by constructing the bottom or floor of each grains cake frame, wedge-shaped or like a tool edge in cross-section. This construction is adapted to save the time of the workman for, as the grains cakes are friable, it will be seen that a mere tap of a hammer will cause the bottom of the grains cake to separate and slide down on each side of the wedge-shaped bottom of the cake frame, and thus leave the frame clean without any further effort on the part of workman.