US 2607834 A
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Aug. 19, 1952 G. H. coNNoRs 2,607,834 ELECTRICALLY CONTROLLED DEPTH INDICATOR FOR BORING MACHINES Filed March 1, 1948 2 SHEETS-SHEET 1 n 1 b N 1/) m F T INVENTOR.
Aug. 19, 1952 G. H. CONNORS 2,607,834
ELECTRICALLY CONTROLLED DEPTH INDICATOR FOR BORING MACHINES Filed March 1, 1948 2 SHEETS--SHEET 2 Patented Aug. 19, 1952 ELECTRICALLY CONTROLLED DEPTH INDI- CATOR FOR BORING MACHINES:
George 11. Connors, Edgerton, Wis., assignor to Highway Trailer Company, Edgerton, Wis., a
corporation Application March 1, 1948, Serial No. 12,394
3 Claims. 1
My present invention relates to the art of machines of the class designed for boring holes in the earth in which holes, telegraph, electric light, and similar poles or posts to be em-.- ployed.
My invention comprises improved depth indicating means for use in conjunction with machines of the above type, to enable the operator of the machines to determine relatively closely thedepth of the hole being bored, so as to stop theboring operation when a predetermined depth has been obtained.
Boring machines of the class in connection with which my invention is. susceptible of use are disclosed in patents of the prior .art such as that of Spowart, No. 1,511,433, granted October 14, 1924., and the patent of Erdahl, No. 1,921,812, granted AugustB, 1933. The construction of the machine of these patents embodies generally a boring head which is swingably mounted upon a truck or suitable vehicle body so that it may be adjusted angularly longitudinally of the axis of the supporting vehicle and transversely of such axis. This boringheadqcarries a boring bar at the lower end of which is mounted the auger which does the digging, said boring bar being supported in the head for longitudinal move: ment to advance the same and withdraw it in relation to the hole being bored in the earth and also support it in rotation in order to drive the auger in its boring action. The boring bar of said head is housed by a guide tube which extends upwardly from the head so "that ordinarily during the boring operation .and advancing of the auger into the earth it is not possible to determine visually the extent of the boring action of the auger as it penetrates the earth.
'I'heprimary object of my present invention,
therefore, is to provide suitable reliable indicating means to enable the operator of the boring machine to be advised as to the extent of the earth penetrating movement of the auger of the machine so that he may discontinue the boring operation when ya hole of predetermined depth has. been bored. The present invention further involves improvements upon a similar type of invention for a like purpose which is embodied in my application for paten-hSerial No. 2,304, filed January 14, 194-8,-now Patent No. 2,573,640.
In carrying out my invention, I avail of electrically controlled indicating means preferably mounted, though not necessarflyso, upon the boring head, whereby to visually indicate the depth of the hole which is being produced by the actionof the boring tool or auger. My invention further involves certain novel provisions as to detail phases of the construction of electricalindicating means, as willappear more fully hereinafter.
A full understanding of the present invention 2 will be had upon reference to the following dc,- tail description in conjunctiqnwith the annexed drawings, in which- Figure 1 is a side view of the main instrumentalities of a boring machine such as hereinbefore referred to and intended to be improved by the present invention, the view illustrating the rear end portion of a truck or vehicle which supports the parts of the boring machine that are illustrated in order to bring out the mode of application of my present invention thereto.
Figure 2 is a rear end elevation of the vehicle showing substantially the same features of its construction, as Well as the boring machine referred to, as are shown in Figure 1.
Figure 3 is a fragmentary View disclosing primarily the tubular guide for the boring bar and the mounting thereon of the adjustable electric switch slide or panel means for holding the latter in adjusted position.
Figure 4 is a vertical sectional view taken primarily through the tubular guide for the boring bar, showi g the latter mounted therein, with the guide head at the top thereof disposed in proper relation to the indicator operatin switches which are actuated by said boring-bar as the latter is caused to descend in boring the hole, and as it is retracted from the hole to a normal inoperative position, the view taken on line 4-4 of Figure .3.
Figure 5 is a horizontal sectional view taken about on the line 5 5 of Figure 3.
Figure 6 is a fragmentary View showing portions of the guide tube and switch slide, and bringing out more clearly the formation of the slots in the guide tube through which the switches on the switch slide or panel extend so as to project slightly into the tube ,for operation by the guide head on the boring bar, this view being taken 311001113 011 the line ,6?6 of Figure 4, looking in the direction of the arrows.
Figure 7 is a diagrammatic view of the electrical circuit connections employed for the indicating and signal lights or devices, certain conductors broken away and not leading to indicat: ing lights due to lack of space.
First referring to Figures 1 and 2 of the draw ings generally depicating the boring machine and vehicle structure supporting the same, it is noted that the vehicle illustrated comprises a chassis or frame 1 partly shown only at the rear end thereof as supp t d u on e ound Wh s 2. Carried at the rear end of the frame 1 usually is the hole digging or boring mechanism which. n ud pr mar y t e or n h a u ported by suitable mounting means 4 and con.- taining the drive gearing by which the boring bar 5, a portion of which is shown at the top of Figures 1 and 2, is operated. The boring bar shaft 5 is adapted to move downwardly and upwardly in the tubular guide 6 which is suitably attached to the upper portion of the boring head 3, as well known in the art, and as the bar is driven in a downward direction rotation is imparted thereto by suitable gear mechanism within the head 3, all as readily to be understood by those versed in the art in conjunction with the knowledge of machines of the type of the Spowart and Erdahl patents hereinbefore identified.
The boring head 3 is of course adapted to be turned or partly rotated about an axis transverse to the longitudinal axis of the machine or chassis I, an axis designated as A in the drawings, in order that the auger 1 carried by the lower end of the boring bar 5 may be shifted outwardly and inwardly relatively to its vertical position as seen in Figure l.
The boring 3 is capable of being rotated to different angles laterally relatively to the chassis or frame I, as viewed in Figure 2, for boring holes at lateral angles in the earth, under which conditions the head operates about the longitudinal axis B indicated in Figure 2. The foregoing is the conventional mode of adjusting the boring head 3, the adjustments being obtained by certain well known mechanism as disclosed in the prior patents previously mentioned.
The boring bar 5 which, as stated, operates within and longitudinally of the guide tube 5, is equipped, as usual, with the guide head 8 which slides in contact with the inner wall of the tube 6 and prevents whipping of the boring bar shaft during its rotation and longitudinal movement as the auger l is driven into the earth for producing the hole which is to be excavated.
I now refer to the indicating means which I have invented and which is presented in this application, whereby to advise the operator of the machine in regard to the depth of digging action of the boring tool I, incident to the progressive feeding downwardly or at suitable angles into the earth the said auger l in the boring operation.
At the inner side thereof, or the side facing toward the vehicle frame I, the guide tube 6 is cut away to provide a series of vertically disposed and aligned slots designated 9. Extending longitudinally of the guide tube 6, as do the slots 9, I provide a switch casing H] in the form of a long housing member running or attached longitudinally by welding or otherwise to the tube 5. The switch casing is formed with attachment flanges at Illa as seen best in Figure 5, and, as indicated, these may be welded directly or otherwise secured to the guide tube 6. [Ga at the points immediately adjacent the sides of the switch casing II) are slightly upraised or spaced away from the outer wall of the tube 6 to provide guide members designated lllb for a switch slide or panel II that is mounted within the casing l0 and carries a series of oppositely acting conventional type of electrical switches designated l2. These switches 12 are supported on the switch panel II at predetermined intervals of space from one another. Preferably the switches I2 will be so positioned that one switch is spaced from the next switch a distance of one foot. The switches l2 are connected with a conductor 13 which preferably consists of a flexible electric wire or cable of conductive material surrounded by a protective tubing I4 as customary. The conductor I4 is included in a main electric circuit which is more clearly shown in Figure 7 of the drawings. The switches l2 extend through the slots '9.
The flanges Various switches l2 previously referred to are movably mounted upon the tube 6 by means of the slide H, and adjacent to the lower end of the tube 6 there is mounted a stationary switch l5 similar to the switches l2, with which switch l5 the conductor 13 also connects.
The switch slide ll is adapted to be held at difierent adjustments vertically of the tube 5 by means of a spring actuated plunger I6 which is mounted at one side of and near the lower end of the switch casing Ill, said plunger having a handle I! at its outer end by which to pull the same outwardly against the tension of the spring l8 surrounding the plunger. At its inner end the plunger I 6 is adapted to engage a selected one of a series of notches Ila formed in one edge of the slide H near the lower end of the latter. Also, the lower end of the slide II is provided with a handle I9 by which it may be readily moved upwardly or downwardly, as desired.
As seen in Figure 1, on the upper portion of the head 3 there is mounted a light panel which. according to the construction shown, provides a series of nine indicating lights ZEI in upper and lower rows, and in the lower row one of the lights designated at 2! is a special signalling light. The lights 20, nine in number, are adapted to be lighted by reason of the connection of each of them with one of the switches 12, see diagram in Figure 7, in which, however, the connections of certain lights with the switches I2 are omitted for lack of space. The light 2| which is a special signalling light, is connected with the stationary switch [5 previously described and seen well in Figures 3 and 4.
It is contemplated that some general circuit having the electrical conductor features shown diagrammatically in Figure 7 shall be employed, the electric energy for operating the indicating lights 20 and the signal light 2| being supplied by the battery 22 usually provided on the motor vehicle partly illustrated as to its members at l and 2, said vehicle of course carrying the boring machine to which my invention particularly relates.
Since the circuit arrangements in Figure '7 are largely conventional, they are not described in detail, though the parts included in the circuit which have been hereinbefore identified, are designated by the previously used identifying numerals.
The operation of my invention is comparatively simple and may now be described. 'Assumin that a hole is to be bored with the machine parts arranged substantially as in Figures 1 and 2, and further assuming that the bit of the auger 1 is say two feet from the surface level of the ground in which the hole is to be bored, it will be apparent that when the operator of the machine throws in the operating gearing for driving the boring bar 5 downwardly, the head 8 of the bar 5 will engage the switches I '2 in its downward progress in the tube 6. As the head 8 descends, it operates each switch 12 to close the same and light the indicating light. 20 controlled by the switch. Therefore, when the bit of the auger '1 reaches the ground, the head 8 will have operated the two uppermost switches 12, the first one being actuated to close the same after the bar 5 has moved one foot downwardly and the second one being actuated when the bar 5 has been moved two feet so that its bit is about to enter the ground. The operator notes of course that two of the indicating lights 20 are operated when the boring tool reaches the ground, and then, if the hole which is to be bored is to be five feet deep the seventh one of the indicating electrical devices will be operated when the five foot depth has been reached. At this time the operator will discontinue the drive of the mechanism in the head 3 so as to stop the downward movement of the boring bar 5 and its auger I, and the hole will be dug to the predetermined depth. Let it be supposed again that the driving head 3 has been tilted about the axis A so that the head and the tube 6 are inclined rearwar'dly toward the frame I and the auger is inclined with the boring bar in an outward direction. Under these conditions of course, the bit of the auger I will be more than two feet from the ground. It'may be, say, three or four feet from the ground, but if it is four feet from the ground it will have to advance four feet before the bit of the auger I reaches the ground level, and the operator will note when the fourth indicating light 20 is on which will show that the bar 5 has advanced four feet as the auger 1 begins to penetrate the ground. Therefore, to obtain a five foot hole, the operator will note when the ninth light goes on, referring to the lights 28, and this will indicate that a five foot depth of hole has been obtained, whereupon the driving of the boring bar 5 will be discontinued. The same principle of operation of the indicating light 20 will obtain when the boring head 3 and the guide tube 6 are disposed at other angles than the vertical, and also when the vehicle l2 is backed to a position wherein the boring mechanism is disposed above a trench or any other lower ground level than that carrying the machine l2.
Now in reference to the light 2|, it will be recalled that the stationary switch I5 is located below the sliding switch panel II and adjacent to a point on the drill head at which the boring shaft or bar 5 reaches the lower limit of its travel. The switch I5 is therefore used as a safety device and may operate either the signal light 2|, which might be of the color red as distinguished from the indicating light 20 which might be white, so that when the boring bar reaches the limit of its lower movement, the head 8 will strike the switch I5 and put on the warning light 2| to make sure the operator will stop the downward or outward movement of the boring bar in a digging operation when such limit of movement has been reached.
The reason for providing the flexible conductor I3I4 is to enable a certain amount of slack to be provided at the point Ma in the length of said conductor, see Figure 1, enabling the movement of the switch slide I I to different positions where it will be held by the locking plunger I6. The switches I 2 are mounted on the sliding panel II for adjustment purposes for compensating for variation in the height of the frame of the machine in relation to the ground surface on which the vehicle travels. That is to say some vehicles on which the boring machinery will be mounted have a frame at a higher point from the ground than other machines, and it is desirable that the slide ll be adjusted so that the various switches I2 may be positioned to enable the boring bar 8 to operate the switches when they are located approximately accurately a definite number of feet from the ground, the footage readings of course being supplied by reference to the indicating light 20 in the manner previously set forth.
As the boring bar 5 re-enters the guide member during retraction from the hole, or reverse movement from that of digging, it operates the switches I5 and I2 to break the electric circuit connections to the lights 20 and 21 so the latter will be rendered inactive.
Obviously, the signal 2| may be a light, as shown, or an audible signal which would be equally useful.
Having thus described my invention, what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent of the United States, is: V
1. In combination, a hole boring machine comprising a boring head, a guide member extending from the head, a boring bar operable to be projected from the head in its boring operation, an auger carried by the lower end of the boring bar, cooperating means intermediate the guide and bar to prevent the bar from whipping during its hole boring action, and indicating mechanism comprising digging depth indicators coacting with the boring machine, operating devices for the indicators located at predetermined distances apart on the said guide member and operable by the boring bar in its boring movement to render the indicators active for indicating the amount of movement of the bar, and means to adjust the positions of the various operating devices simultaneously relatively to the guide member.
2. In combination, a hole boring machine comprising a boring head, a guide member extending from the head, a boring bar operable to be projected from the head in its boring operation, an auger carried by the lower end of the boring bar, cooperating means intermediate the guide and bar to prevent the bar from whipping during its hole boring action, and indicating mechanism comprising digging depth indicators coacting with the boring machine, operating devices for the indicators located at predetermined distances apart on the said guide member and operable by the boring bar in its boring movement to render the indicators active for indicating the amount of movement of the bar, and a panel member adjustable on the guide member and supporting said operating devices carried by the guide member.
3. In combination, a hole boring machine comprising a boring head, a guide member extending from the head, a boring bar operable to be projected from the head in its boring operation, an auger carried by the lower end of the boring bar, cooperating means intermediate the guide andbar to prevent the bar from whipping during its hole boring action, and indicating mechanism comprising digging depth indicators coacting with the boring machine, operating devices for the indicators located at predetermined distances apart on the said guide member and operable by the boring bar in its boring movement to render the indicators active for indicating the amount of movement of the bar, and a slide adjus-tably supporting the members operable by the guide head.
GEORGE H. CONNORS.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 532,868 Bull Jan. 22, 1895 705,421 Moore July 22, 1902 1,857,172 Wagner May 10, 1932 2,346,066 Conrad Apr. 4, 1944 2,434,138 Adams Jan. 6, 1948