Patent No. 2064748A: Machine For Plucking Hops

Today in 1871, US Patent 2064748 A was issued, an invention of George Arthur Hinds, for his “Machine For Plucking Hops.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

This invention has for its object to provide an improved machine for plucking hops, that is to say for detaching the flowers or cones from the main parts of the plants (commonly termed vines or bines).

The invention comprises, for use in such a machine, a plucker in the form of a comb-like device having notches adapted to be engaged by only the thinner stems of the plants, namely those attached to or in the immediate neighbourhood of the flowers.

The invention also comprises the combination of a plurality of the aforesaid pluckers, movable means on which the pluckers are mounted, means for suspending the hop plants in the inverted condition adjacent to the pluckers, and means for producing relative movements between the pluckers and plants.

In particular the invention comprises the combination of an endless conveyor, pluckers as aforesaid carried on this conveyor, an overhead conveyor fitted with means from which the hop plants can be suspended, the second conveyor being movable in a line parallel with a plane containing the working side of the plucker conveyor, and means for reciprocating or swinging the hop plants towards and away from the working side of the plucker conveyor.

Further the invention comprises the combination with plucker and plant conveyors, of means for producing an air stream whereby the plants are moved towards the pluckers, and means for intermittently interrupting the air stream.


Patent No. 2863579A: Case Unloader With Bottle Rejecting Head

Today in 1958, US Patent 2863579 A was issued, an invention of George L.N. Meyer, for his “Case Unloader with Bottle Rejecting Head.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

This invention relates to a case unloader adapted to unload empty bottles from a case and to reject bottles with corks, caps or other obstructions in the neck of the bottle.

In case unloaders used to remove empty beer, carbonated beverage bottles, etc., from cases and deliver them to a bottle washer, or the like, prior to refilling, much trouble has been experienced with bottles that have been re-capped or which have a cork or other obstruction in the neck. Case unloaders heretofore made had no provision for rejecting such bottles and as a result bottles with caps or corks on the necks were processed through the bottle washer. When such bottles reached the inside brush station, or the rinsing station, the brush spindle, or the rinse nozzle, would strike the cap, cork or other obstruction and bend either the spindle or the nozzle, necessitating stopping of the machine to replace the damaged element.

It is an object of the present invention to provide a case unloader for bottles which will reject any bottles having a crown, cork or other such obstruction in the neck, and so prevent such bottles from going through the washing machine.

Another object is to provide a case unloader which will remove only those bottles from the case which have the necks of the bottles free of obstructions.

A further object of the invention is to provide a case unloader for beverage bottles, or the like, which will reduce break-downs in the bottle washing machinery.

A still further object is to provide a case unloader which will reduce the amount of supervision required to load bottles onto a bottle washer.

A still further object of the invention is to reduce the overall cost of washing bottles.


Patent No. 572708A: Beer Bottling Apparatus

Today in 1896, US Patent 572708 A was issued, an invention of Charles Meldrum, for his “Beer Bottling Apparatus.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

Prior to my invention it has been the usual custom to fill bottles with beer from the keg by employing flexible rubber tubes which are passed down through the open bung-hole into the beer and siphoning the beer through these tubes into the bottles. The disadvantages in bottling beer in this manner are that too much air is admitted through the open bung-hole and the beer is subjected to unnecessary agitation in being siphoned over, all of which results in the liberation and escape of sufficient gas to materially effect the life of the beer. Then, too, any sediment or impurities which may be present in the beer in the keg are carried over into the bottles, which is also a serious objection.

-The object of my present invention is to overcome these defects in a simple and effective manner; and to that end it consists of a passage or conductor one end of which is adapted for tight insertion and removable retention in the bung-hole on the lower side of the keg and provided with a vent-tube which passes up through the beer and into the air-space above, the other end having a chamber across which is placed a strainer and a series of outlet-passages arranged in the wall of the straining-chamber and adapted for engagement with a series of flexible tubes, through which the strained beer passes by gravity into the bottles.


Patent No. 331873A: Baling Press

Today in 1885, US Patent 331873 A was issued, an invention of Murray H. Durst, for his “Baling Press.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

My invention relates to certain improvements in balling-presses; and it consists in certain details of construction, power, and means of application, all of which will be more fully described by reference to the accompanying drawings, in which- Figure 1 is a general view of the press. Fig. 2 shows the lower part of the press with the door closed. Fig. 3 is a view of the mechanism for raising and lowering the follower. Fig. 4 is a section of the same. Fig. 5 is a vertical section of the press.

This press is especially designed for the pressing of hops, and is preferably so built that the upper end of the vertical case or box A will be on a level with or under the floor upon which the hops are contained, while the lower end, having discharge-doors B, communicates with the floor below. The follower C fits the press-box A, and has arms D extend ing Vertically upward from it and hinged to a crossbar, E, the ends of which are strongly secured to the vertical timbers F. These timbers move in vertical guides G, as shown, and when drawn down will force the follower down to the bottom of the press-box, and when raised will elevate it, so that when it arrives at a point just above the top of the box and the level of the floor with which it communicates the follower will be swung to one side about the hinges by which its supporting-timbers D are connected with the transverse bar E, before described.


Patent No. 5473161A: Method For Testing Carbonation Loss From Beverage Bottles Using IR Spectroscopy

Today in 1995, US Patent 5473161 A was issued, an invention of John A. Nix, Stephen W. Zagarola, and Louis Jolie, for their “Method for Testing Carbonation Loss from Beverage Bottles using IR Spectroscopy.” Here’s the Abstract:

A method for measuring carbonation loss in beverage bottles and predicting shelf-life thereof utilizes infrared (IR) absorption spectroscopy. The concentration of CO2 gas in a bottle being tested is measured with an infrared beam according to Beer’s Law. In one embodiment the CO2 gas measured is in the headspace of a test bottle partially filled with carbonated water. The walls of the bottle are clamped in a fixture to maintain the bottle diameter substantially constant. An IR beam is transmitted through the bottle just below the fixture, and absorption values of the beam are measured. Shelf-life is calculated from the absorption values. In another embodiment the test bottle is filled with compressed CO2 gas generated by dry ice placed in the bottle.


Patent No. 197744A: Improvement In Hop-Vine Stripper And Separator

Today in 1877, US Patent 197744 A was issued, an invention of Moses C. Smith, for his “Improvement in Hop-Vine Stripper and Separator.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

This invention is in the nature of an improvement in machinery for picking or stripping hops from their vines for separating the hops from the vine-leaves; for separating or breaking up bunches or clusters, and for delivering the hops into bags ready for the kiln, the said machinery being portable, and designed for use in the field.

The invention consists in rolls of soft yielding material for feeding the vines to the stripping mechanism; of moving stripping-teeth disengaging the hops from the vines as they are fed forward, and carrying said vines forward; of a table beneath said moving teeth for receiving the vines from the feed-rolls, and made yielding, so as to avoid choking by accumulation of the vines; of a toothed revolving apron, operating in connection with a toothed bar, for delivering said hops into a chute, from which they are discharged into bags in condition for the drying-kiln, these several elements being combined as hereinafter claimed.

The invention further consists, in connection with the above-described or equivalent mechanism, in a fan located in the forward end of the machine; a fan-hood, the throat of which is guarded by a number of tongues depending from the yielding table before described, to prevent the escape of hops and leaves into the fan-casing; a perforated apron moving over rollers, and. a shaker or sieve placed beneath the said apron, and over the and the perforated apron, over which the vines pass, and between which the hops fall onto the toothed apron.

The invention also consists in arms or rests secured to the frame of the machine, and projecting laterally therefrom at either side of the feed-opening, for the purpose of permitting the stacking of the hop-poles, with the vines thereon, in convenient reach of those feeding the machine.


Patent No. 416157A: Apparatus For Drying Hops

Today in 1889, US Patent 416157 A was issued, an invention of Samuel Cleland Davidson, for his “Apparatus For Drying Tea, Hops, SLiced Fruit, &c.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

The object of this invention is the construction of an apparatus in which a very strong current of heated air or cool desiccated air can be used for rapidly drying tea, coffee, cocoa, cinchona, hops, sliced fruits, seeds, meal, or other such substances, on sieves or perforated trays arranged in a drying-chamber one above the other on a vertical column, and movable in successive order of rotation from bottom to top of the column without the martial being whirled by the strength of the current into heaps on the trays while in the drying-chamber, or blown away off them by it when the trays are being put into or taken out of the apparatus.


Patent No. 268186A: Measuring Vessel

Today in 1882, US Patent 268186 A was issued, an invention of George J. Gave, for his “Measuring Vessel.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

This invention relates to that class of measuring-vessels designed to automatically indicate from the outside the quantity of beer or other fermenting liquor as it is poured into said measuring vessels, the object being to save labor and material in the construction and render the vessels less liable to get out of repair.


Patent No. 775780A: Art Of Brewing

Today in 1904, US Patent 775780 A was issued, an invention of Joseph Schneible, for his “Art Of Brewing.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

This invention relates particularly to the preparation of beer-wort, and has for its object to make-it possible to produce with certainty a wort of definite character, with reference particularly to the relationship between sugar and non-sugar, maltodextrins and dextrin, etc.

According to the methods of brewing now practiced the production of a wort of a definite or the best character in so far as it is dependent upon the relative amounts present in it of the different starch derivatives is practically impossible. This is largely due to the fact that the malt mash is subjected for a time long enough to permit conversion of the starch to take place to varying temperatures without so controlling the temperatures as to obtain the different starch derivatives in the desired proportions. This variation of temperature necessarily results from delivering, as is the customary practice, the cooked unmalted cereal mash or other heating medium,”such as hot water, which in some systems of brewing is used to raise the temperature of the malt mash, at substantially the boiling temperature to the mash-tub, which already contains the peptonized malt mash, which is at a temperature much below the boiling-point. The stream of boiling-hot cooked mash raises the temperature of the adjacent portions of the malt mash to a heat approximating its own temperature,which unduly elevated temperature continues long enough for conversion of the starch obviously where the hot cereal to begin. mash or other heating medium is thus introduced into the malt mash it is not only impossible to regulate the temperature to which portions of the malt mash are thus raised, but it is also impossible to regulate the quantity of the malt mash which has its temperature thus unduly raised, and the degree and extent Serial No. 186,592. (No specimens) of conversion or saccharification is therefore impossible of regulation under such methods.

According to the present invention the temperature of the peptonized malt mash is raised to the proper converting degree by the heat of the cooked unmalted cereal mash or other heating medium; but the attainment of the desired temperature .,is effected in so short a space of time that no reaction at other temperatures will take place, the contact of the malt mash at the peptonizing temperature with the substantially boiling hot cooked mash or other heating medium being only momentary, or rather the thorough mixture of the two being so quickly effected that no undesired reaction takes place. The contact or mingling of the malt mash and cooked mash or other heating medium preferably takes place as the two mashes or the malt mash and heating medium are moving on together in a comparatively small stream, and no portion of the malt mash remains in contact for any appreciable length of time with the cooked mash or other heating medium while the latter is at boiling temperature. In other words, the malt mash is raised to the desired converting temperature without subjecting the malt mash to reaction at any temperature other than that which is predetermined.

It will be obvious that the invention can be practiced in different ways and with different forms of apparatus, the most convenient and practicable mode of practicing the invention being to thoroughly mingle the malt mash and the hot cooked mash or other heating medium while in movement from the respective tanks or sources of supply tothe common mash-tub or strainer-tub, so that the desired converting temperature is attained at once in the commingled mashes or commingled malt mash and heating medium. After being so mingled the combined liquor is allowed to stand for the usual period of time required for conversion.


Patent Nos. 805305A & 805306A: Air Filter

Today in 1905, both US Patent 805305 A and US Patent 805306 A were issued, and both are related inventions of Albert Lieber, under the same name: “Air Filter.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims for the first one:

The object of this invention is to provide an improved construction of air-filter for filtering compressed air and removing from it impurities as well as chemically treating it during its passage through the filter.

The use to which I. have put this filter is for pitching the interior of beer-kegs and the like for blowing and spreading the warm pitch upon the internal surface of a keg by compressed air passing through this filter. In such case the bacteria and germs in the air will be embedded in the pitch and thus affect the beer, impairing its preserving qualities as well as its taste. It is therefore found very important by me that the compressed air used for the purpose mentioned be rendered chemically pure by passing the air through medicated cotton, thus arresting the particles of dust, microbes, germs, and the like. Beer-kegs treated in this way can be used immediately after being pitched and after prior use without the necessity of treating the kegs as heretofore.


And here’s a description of the claims for the second patent:

The chief feature of this invention consists of means for compressing the cotton or filtering material to the degree best suited for the chemical through which the air passed through the device is being treated.

The purpose of the invention, therefore, is to more thoroughly arrest the bacteria and germs of the air in the filter before the same passes through the filter. I have used it for pitching the interior of beer-kegs, the air being passed through the filter and compressed for blowing and spreading warm pitch upon the internal surface of the keg. This device prevents the bacteria and germs from the air entering the pitch.