The inventor says: "The automatic sprinkler is a device for automatically extinguishing fires through the release of water by means of the heat of the fire, the water escaping in a shower, which is thrown in all directions to a distance of from six to eight feet. The sprinkler is a light brass rose, about 1½ inches diameter and less than two inches high entire, the distributer being a revolving head fitted loosely to the body of the fixed portion, which is made to screw into a half inch tube connection. The revolution of the distributer is effected by the resistance the water meets in escaping through slots cut at an angle in the head. The distribution of water has been found to be the most perfect from this arrangement. Now, this distributing head is covered over with a brass cap, which is soldered to the base beneath with an alloy which melts at from 155 to 160 degrees. No water can escape until the cap is removed. The heat of an insignificant fire is sufficient to effect this, and we have the practical prevention of any serious damage or loss through the multiplication of the sprinkler.
PARMELEE'S PATENT AUTOMATIC SPRINKLER.
FIG. 1.--Section of Sprinkler with Cap on.
The annexed engravings represent the sprinkler at exact size for one-half inch connection. Fig. 1 shows a section with the cap covering over the sprinkler, and soldered on to the base. Fig. 2 shows the sprinkler with the cap off, which, of course, leaves the water free to run from the holes in fine spray in all directions. Fig. 1 shows the base hollowed out so as to allow the heat to circulate in between the pipe and the base of the sprinkler, thus allowing the heat to operate on the inside as well as on the outside of the sprinkler; thus, in case of fire, it is very quickly heated through sufficiently to melt the fusible solder. These sprinklers are all tested at 500 lb., consequently they can never leak, and cannot possibly be opened, except by heat, by any one. As the entire sprinkler is covered by a heavy brass cap, soldered on, it cannot by any means be injured, nor can the openings in the revolving head ever become filled with dust.
PARMELEE'S PATENT AUTOMATIC SPRINKLER.
FIG.2--Sprinkler with cap off.
It is so simple as to be easily understood by any one. As soon as the sprinkler becomes heated to 155 degrees, the cap will become unsoldered, and will then immediately be blown entirely off by the force of the water in the pipes and sprinkler. These caps cannot remain on after the fusible metal melts, if there is the least force of water. A man's breath is sufficient to blow them off.
The arrangement commences with one or more main supply pipes, either fed from a city water pipe or from a tank, as the situation will admit. If desired, the tank need only be of sufficient size to feed a few sprinklers for a short time, and then dependence must be placed upon a pump for a further supply of water, if necessary. The tank, however small, will insure the automatic and prompt working of the sprinklers and alarm, and by the time the tank shall become empty the pumps can be got at work. It is most desirable, however, in all cases to have an abundant water supply without resorting to pumps, if it is possible.
In the main supply pipe or pipes is placed our patent alarm valve, which, as soon as there is any motion of the water in the pipe, opens, and moves a lever, which, by connecting with a steam whistle valve by means of a wire, will blow the whistle and will continue to do so until either the steam or the water is stopped. Tins constitutes the alarm, and is positive in its motion. No water can possibly flow from the line of pipes without opening this valve and blowing the whistle. We also put in an automatic alarm bell when desired.
From the main pipe other pipes are run, generally lengthways of the building, ten feet from each side and twenty feet apart. At every ten feet on these pipes we place five feet of three-quarter inch pipe, reaching each side, at the end of which is placed the sprinkler in an elbow pointing toward the ceiling. This arrangement is as we place them in all cotton and woolen mills, but may be varied to suit different styles of buildings.
The sprinkler is made of brass, and has a revolving head, with four slots, from which the water flies in a very fine and dense spray on everything, and filling the air very completely for a radius of seven or eight feet all around; thus rendering the existence of any fire in that space perfectly impossible; and as the sprinklers are only placed ten feet apart, and a fire cannot start at a greater distance than from five to six feet from one or more of them, it is assured that all parts of a building are fully protected.
Over each one of these sprinklers is placed a brass cap, which fits closely over and passes below the base, where it is soldered on with a fusible metal that melts as soon as it is heated to 155 degrees.
As soon as a fire starts in any part of a building, heat will be generated and immediately rise toward the ceiling, and the sprinkler nearest the fire will become heated in a very few moments to the required 155 degrees, when the cap will become loosened and will be forced off by the power of the water. The water will then be spread in fine spray on the ceiling over the fire, also directly on the fire and all around for a diameter of from fourteen to eighteen feet. This spray has been fully tried, and it is found to be entirely sufficient to extinguish any fire within its reach which can be made of any ordinary materials.
As soon as the cap on any sprinkler becomes loosened by the heat of a fire and is forced off, a current of water is produced in the main pipe where the alarm valve is placed, and as the passage through it is dosed, the water cannot pass without opening the valve and thus moving the lever to which the steam whistle valve is attached; by this motion the whistle valve is opened, and the whistle will blow until it is stopped by some one."