Patents by Inventor Kenneth Z. Graham

Kenneth Z. Graham has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 4467498
    Abstract: An apparatus and method are disclosed for pulling out and separating the viscera from a fowl carcass during food processing. The apparatus includes a rotary carrier (B) on which are carried a plurality of gripping devices (A). A rotary axis (35) of the rotary carrier (B) mounted on a frame (70) is inclined to the horizontal at such an angle that the gripping devices (A) penetrate the cavities (24) of fowl carcasses (F) conveyed sequentially past the frame (70). The gripping device (A) includes serrated gripping jaws (10, 14) which clamp a viscera track (18) between the crop and stomach. The jaws are carried by spoke arms (48) carried radially on a hub (36) forming the rotary carrier (B). A spring (61) closes the jaws and cam plates (62, 63) open the jaws through a cam roller (64). Cam roller (64) pushes forward a rack gear (58) to open the jaws via a rotary shaft (54) having a jaw (14) affixed thereto.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 1983
    Date of Patent: August 28, 1984
    Assignee: Cantrell Machine Co., Inc.
    Inventors: Johnny R. Graham, Kenneth Z. Graham
  • Patent number: 4382314
    Abstract: A plurality of birds suspended from an overhead conveyor are received in series at the work stations 30 of the outer rotatable work cylinder 29 of the eviscerator. Bird holders 105 are moved by stationary cams 100 and 119 to hold the birds at each work station for an arc of travel of approximately 180.degree. about the eviscerator, and eviscerator tools 74 are moved by stationary cams 19 and 22 down into the cavity of each bird and then extracted therefrom to remove the viscera from the bird. A pair of vertical guide bars 37 are carried at each work station within the work cylinder and the upper and lower carriages 41 and 94 which support the eviscerator tools 74 and bird holders 105 reciprocate along the lengths of the guide bars. The work cylinder can be progressively raised or lowered by the simultaneous rotation of work cylinder mounting rods 28.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 1981
    Date of Patent: May 10, 1983
    Inventor: Kenneth Z. Graham
  • Patent number: 4282633
    Abstract: A line of poultry suspended on hangers and moving in alignment in series through a processing plant is divided by engaging and urging alternate one of the engaged hangers laterally with respect to the direction of movement of the hangers along the conveyor line, substantially without deflecting the hangers or the poultry carried thereby from their longitudinal movement with the conveyor line. In one embodiment, paddles carried on a continuous separator conveyor move along a path that diverges laterally beneath the conveyor line and the surfaces of the paddles which engage alternate ones of the hangers are oriented at an angle that does not impart movement to the hangers or the poultry carried thereby along the conveyor line.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 1979
    Date of Patent: August 11, 1981
    Inventors: Kenneth Z. Graham, Johnny R. Graham
  • Patent number: 4249284
    Abstract: Poultry gizzards with entrails such as gut and stomach attached are supported at first on a rotary drum with a helical tread and a rotary support bar whereupon the gizzards are urged along a path and are oriented so that the entrails hang therebelow as they move along the path. As the gizzards move beyond the rotary drum they move onto a stationary support bar that also cooperates with an extension of the rotary support bar, and a conveyor moves down into engagement with the gizzards and urges the gizzards further along the path. A rotary cutting disc extending over the support bars severs the entrails from the gizzards, and a second rotary cutting disc protrudes upwardly between the support bars and splits the gizzards. The split gizzards then straddle a support rail and move up on and over helical cleaning wheels which further separates the cut-apart portions of the gizzards to permit water spray to remove the particles from the gizzards.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 1979
    Date of Patent: February 10, 1981
    Inventors: Kenneth Z. Graham, Johnny R. Graham
  • Patent number: 4153972
    Abstract: A lung removal apparatus for poultry in which an access opening to their body cavity has been formed at their vent wherein the apparatus includes a conveyor from which shackle members are flexibly suspended to engage and support the poultry by their hocks, a guide for selectively locating the shackle members, a positioning member having a hook engagable with the poultry at their access opening in opposition to the shackle member and means for selectively varying the spacing between the hook and the shackle member to support poultry between the shackle member and hook so that the access opening is in a fixed plane while the breast portion of the poultry is flexibly supported in a cantilever fashion through its bone and muscle structure. A vacuum tool is reciprocally mounted on a traveling table adjacent the fixed plane in which the access opening is located and extendible through the fixed plane and access opening into the body cavity while the table moves the tool along in alignment with the poultry.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 18, 1975
    Date of Patent: May 15, 1979
    Assignee: Stork-Gamco, Inc.
    Inventors: Grover S. Harben, Kenneth Z. Graham
  • Patent number: 4097960
    Abstract: In a poultry processing plant where birds are conveyed in a suspended series through the plant in a neck-down attitude, a series of bird holders are moved up an incline from below the path of the birds in timed relationship with the movement of the birds until the bird holders at least partially support the birds. The bird holders are then moved with the birds, and cutting implements cut the neck skin and other neck tissue and break the neck of the bird as the bird and bird holders continue to move in the system. Each bird holder comprises a pair of legs formed in a V-shape with the apex of the V lower than the diverging ends of the legs, and the legs receive a bird about its shoulder area so that gravity and the incline of the diverging legs of the bird holder tend to place the neck of the bird at the apex of the V-shape and to tilt the bird so that its usually arcuate neck extends more in a downward direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 28, 1976
    Date of Patent: July 4, 1978
    Inventors: Kenneth Z. Graham, Johnny R. Graham
  • Patent number: 4024603
    Abstract: A viscera removal apparatus for poultry having a preformed access opening to their body cavity including a conveying and positioning means for successively moving poultry along a prescribed path; a plurality of vacuum operated tool assemblies; carriage means for selectively moving the tool assemblies into the body cavities of the poultry through the access openings so that the operating ends thereof overlie the viscera to be removed; vacuum means for imposing a vacuum through the operating ends of the tool assemblies to withdraw the viscera; and muffler means for introducing ambient air into the body cavity to reduce the operating noise level. The method of operation is also contemplated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 1975
    Date of Patent: May 24, 1977
    Assignee: Gainesville Machine Company, Inc.
    Inventors: Grover S. Harben, Jr., Kenneth Z. Graham
  • Patent number: 3992752
    Abstract: A lung removal method for poultry in which an access opening to their body cavity has been formed at their vent including the steps of supporting poultry by its hocks and at an access opening at the vent so as to locate the access opening in a fixed plane while the breast portion of the poultry is flexibly supported therefrom in cantilever fashion through the bone and muscle structure of the poultry. The method also includes inserting an eviscerating tool through the access opening to eviscerate the poultry while it is supported. A separate vacuum may be imposed through the tool on different parts of the viscera to remove same.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 1974
    Date of Patent: November 23, 1976
    Assignee: Gainesville Machine Company, Inc.
    Inventors: Grover S. Harben, Jr., Kenneth Z. Graham
  • Patent number: RE32402
    Abstract: An apparatus and method are disclosed for pulling out and separating the viscera from a fowl carcass during food processing. The apparatus includes a rotary carrier (B) on which are carried a plurality of gripping devices (A). A rotary axis (35) of the rotary carrier (B) mounted on a frame (70) is inclined to the horizontal at such an angle that the gripping devices (A) penetrate the cavities (24) of fowl carcasses (F) conveyed sequentially past the frame (70). The gripping device (A) includes serrated gripping jaws (10, 14) which clamp a viscera track (18) between the crop and stomach. The jaws are carried by spoke arms (48) carried radially on a hub (36) forming the rotary carrier (B). A spring (61) closes the jaws and cam plates (62, 63) open the jaws through a cam roller (64). Cam roller (64) pushes forward a rack gear (58) to open the jaws via a rotary shaft (54) having a jaw (14) affixed thereto.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 24, 1985
    Date of Patent: April 21, 1987
    Assignee: Cantrell Machine Co., Inc.
    Inventors: Johnny R. Graham, Kenneth Z. Graham