US 2623363 A
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Va'qyMW/iams 5 Sheets-Sheet 1 TUS FOR MECHANICALL-Y ICING REFRIGERATOR CARS AND THE LIKE V. B. WILLIAMS, SR APPARA Dec. 30, 1952 Flled Dec 1 1947 Dec. 30, 1952 v w s, R 2,623,363
APPARATUS FOR MECHANICALLY ICING REFRIGERATOR CARS AND THE LIKE Filed D90. 1, 1947 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Dec. 30, 1952 v. B. WlLLlAMS, SR 2,523,363
APPARATUS FOR MECHANICALLY ICING REFRIGERATOR CARS AND THE LIKE 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed Dec. 1, 1947 Patented Dec. 30, 1952 APPARATUS FOR MECHANIOALLY ICING REFRIGERATOR CARS AND THE LIKE Vaughan B. Williams, Sin, Dallas, Tex assignor of forty-nine per cent to Charles F. Miller, Jr.,
Falls Church, Va.
Application December 1, 1947, Serial No. 789,045
The present invention relates to an improved apparatus for mechanically icing refrigerator cars and the like and aims generally to improve existing apparatus for that purpose.
A primary object of the invention is the provision of a mechanical ice bunkering apparatus that will effectively and eificiently handle ice from its delivery to the icing platform toits discharge into the car bunkers.
A further object of the invention is the provision of an improved apparatus for breaking the large 300 lb. cakes of ice into smaller, more easily handled and efiicient icing pieces and selectively delivering said crushed ice to opposite sides of an endless carrier from which it may be discharged from selectedlocations along the length thereof into chutes leading to the car bunkers.
A further object of the invention is the provision of an improved apparatus which substantially meohanizes the car-icing operations by cordinating and integrating the operations of mechanically breaking, lateral and longitudinal distribution and selective discharge.
The above and other objects of the invention will be apparent to persons skilled in the art to which the invention relates from a consideration of the accompanying drawings and annexed specification illustrating and describing one preferred embodiment of ice-bunkering systems.
In the drawings:
Fig. 1 is a top plan view illustrating a preferred apparatus suitable for car-icing a plurality of railway refrigerator cars according to the invention;
Fig. 2 is a side elevation of the ice-breaking mechanism and a portion of the icing platform and distributing conveyor;
Fig. 3 is a transverse sectional view of the apparatus adjacent the ice-breaking mechanism and illustrating one of the loader chutes in relation to the distributing conveyor;
Fig. 4 is a detail transverse sectional view as taken on the line 44 of Fig. 1
Fig. 5 is a detail side elevation of the ice-breaker; and
Fig. 6 is a detail longitudinal sectional view, partly in elevation, illustrating the return mechanism of the distributing conveyor and the transverse transfer conveyor.
According to the invention, cake ice, preferably in 300 lb. blocks, is delivered from a suitable storage room by a suitable conveyor (not shown) to an ice-receiving conveyor which moves it to and through an ice-breaking mechanism where the cakes of ice are broken into smaller pieces and selectively discharged onto laterally spaced, substantially horizontally disposed distributor surfaces moving in opposite directions. The distributor surfaces move the broken ice discharged thereon in an endless circuitous path between opposed rows of transversely aligned bunker hatch openings into which ice from the distributor surfaces is selectively discharged by suitable bunker loading means. Ice which is not diverted from the distributor surfaces Will continue to be moved in an endless circuitous path and hence will be continuously available for use at any desired point or for recovery and subsequent use if desired.
A preferred apparatus for practicing the invention comprises an icing platform 5 of desired length and supported in elevated position to be slightly above the plane of the tops of railway refrigerator cars 8 positioned on tracks 9 on opposite sides of the platform. The platform 5 may be about 14 to 18 feet in width as is usual in existing car-icing platforms, which is suflicient to provide a support for a centrally disposed distributing conveyor framework and walks 5 on opposite sides thereof extending substantially the length of the platform.
Ice-receiving, ice-breaking and ice-distributing means are supported upon the platform, preferably centrally thereof, and conveniently are mounted upon a suitable framework I4 comprising uprights [5 arranged in pairs at spaced intervals longitudinally of the platform. Transverse supports l6 may bridge the pairs of uprights to provide a supporting structure for a distributing conveyor 19, which preferably is of an endless fiat belt type having opposed fiat longitudinal runs moving in opposite directions as indicated by the arrows in Fig. 1.
Certain uprights or stanchions l5 for one of the runs are of greater length than the others to provide supports for an elevated ice-receiver for receiving the initial 300 lb. cakes of ice and delivering them to an ice-breaker. Preferably the ice-receiver is disposed above one of the runs of the distributing conveyor l9. This ice-receiver conveniently may comprise an endless belt conveyor l0 trained over rolls II supported on the uprights [5, which rolls are driven by suitable motor drive l2. The ice-receiving conveyor I0 is of sufficient length to support a plurality of cakes of ice and feed them rapidly and. sequentially to an ice-breaker 30 conveniently located above the distributing conveyor, preferably centrally of the platform. Guide members 13 extend upwardly at each side of the conveyor 10 to retain on guides 33 and actuated by means of a motor driven crank and pitman mechanism 34.
Pointed teeth 35 extend downwardly from the head 32 and are carried by a bar 36 hinged to the I head at 31 and yieldingly held in a vertical position by springs 38. As the head 32 reciprocates, the teeth 35 intermittently strike the cakes of ice fed thereunder by the conveyor ID, thus breaking the cakes of ice into smaller pieces of a size dependent upon the rate of reciprocation of the head and the rate of movement of the conveyor 10. The pivotal mounting of the teeth 35 permits them to follow the forward movement of the ice as it is moved by the conveyor [-8, and as the breaker bar is returned to the top of its stroke the hinged bar and teeth "are drawn back into vertical position by the action of springs 38.
After contact with the breaker teeth the broken ice falls or is pushed into a short stationary inclined chute 2 located above the main conveyor belt and which conveys the ice continuously into either of two movable chutes 2 and 2 which in turn feed or discharge it onto the main conveyor belt [9. other of the chutes 2 and 2 by a selector gate -2 pivotally mounted at 2 and swingable :into alternate positions to selectively block one chute while simultaneously directing the ice into the other chute. ice to be selectively discharged onto either run of the distributor conveyor [9. Both of the chutes 2 and 2 are desirably hinged orpivcted at their upper ends and spring-loaded just sufficiently to keep them clear of the main loader .con-
veyor belt system.
The oppositely disposed runs of the conveyor belt l9 extend longitudinally of the platform 5 and are supported on the transverse supports I8 and longitudinal supports 40 of the framework [4- in any suitable manner. Longitudinally extending guide rails 4| are mounted on the framework l4 along the inner edges of the conveyor runs and are oined at the ends by transversely extending guide rails 52.. On the outside-or track side of the conveyor runs a metal guide groove 43 approximately two inches in depth and one inch wide is attached, running parallel to the edges of the runs. This groove is for the operation of the loader described hereinafter.
The conveyor belt propulsion is by a standard continuous drag chain operationwith drag-chain dogs contacting cor-responding downward projections on the under side of theconveyor belt, or by a general type of belt conveyor operating over a roller track and propelled by any standard type of mechanism commonly used to move such loaded conveyor belts.
At each end of the framework 14, the'conveyor belt l9 passes through a flat return mechanism indicated generally by the numeral :6 and returns upon the framework I4 on the other side of'the main platform. A transfer conveyor-belt 45 .receives ice at the point where the main conveyor belt it enters the-flat returnmechanism. Curved The ice is selectively fed into one or the This enables the broken pieces of 1 upright metal deflectors 46 positioned adjacent the ends of the conveyor [9 and extending along the outer side edges of the transfer conveyor 45 prevent ice from being propelled beyond this point in line of travel of the main conveyor belt. The transfer conveyors 45 may be operated by independent motors 45a through gearing 4'! or by gearing to the rollers at either end of the main conveyors. The transfer conveyors carry the ice across the ends of the system from one run of the conveyor I9 to the other run thereof on the opposite icing-side of'the main platform.
The flat return mechanism 6 at each end of the conveyor belt consists of (a) two rollers 48, fixed in horizontal positions at right angles to the line travelled by the main conveyor belt, and slightly lower than the conveyor belt itself; (b) two guide spindles 49 emplaced either directly upon the main platform or on a base built thereon, each having flanges 5| at the ends thereof large enough to accommodate the belt, and positioned by appropriate rigid supports or brackets 52 so as to lean outward at an angle of approximately 60 degrees from the vertical, the lower end of the spindle being fixed approximately in the line of the middle of the main platform, and '(c) a main spindle 53' placed in vertical position approximately 4 feet beyond the guide spindles directly in the line of the middleof the main platform.
The main conveyor belt is at each end thereof passes over one of the horizontal rollers '48, down and around the lower side of one of the guide spindles 43, thence upward and around the outside of the main spindle 53, thencedown and around the lower side of the other guide spindle 49 and thence over the other horizontal roller 48 onto the supporting framework '14 on the other side of the platform. Thus the conveyor belt 13, with the same side exposed, makes a full circuit traversing both sides of the icing platform, in either direction at the will of the operator :and at variable speed.
Ice is selectively diverted and discharged from the conveyor 19 into selected bunker hatch openings by a loader 54 shown in Figs. 1 and 3 and compr'is'ing'a light metal trough or chute '55 having a width of approximately '30 inches at the mouth, a depth-of from 6 inches to 8 inches, and tapering to an overall length from '9 to 14 feet, depending upon the proximity of the track to the ed'geof the platform. The mouth of the loading chute is held in place close to the conveyor belt by an angle iron, a rolled edge arrangement or any similardevice adapted to slide in'theguide groove '43, above described, which parallels the edge of the conveyor belt. A diversion or feeder arm '56 is arranged for'both a vertical lift and to be closed horizontally against the loader mouth or opening as may bedesired .by the operator.
The loading chute 55 has a bottom opening or door 51 approximately .26 inches wide by 30 inches long and located to correspond to the average distance between the guide groove and bunker opening nearest the edge of the platform, or, more specifically, to be over such bunker opening (see Fig. 3). Ordinarily the near side of this opening is arranged with a bottom hinged door so that it may be closed by a pull-bar 58 as shown when the desired quantity of ice has been gravitated into the first bunker opening, thereby enabling the ice to traverse the lower SBQtiOII'Of the chute and .into the opening .of the far bunker. When ice .is feeding .into either bunker thelower eend of the chute rests upon the edge of the bunker opening farthest away from the platform.
The loader is also equipped with a wheel and lift arrangement 69 which enables the operator to raise the lower end of the chute above the bunker lids while sliding the loader along the guide groove d3 from one car to another. This lift is optional insofar as operation is concerned. The leader may be counter-balanced if necessary in order to equalize the weight of the loader to maintain its position in the guide groove. This loader will be made from light-weight material, ordinarily 20 gauge galvanized steel or aluminum having rolled edges for stability, with all openings reinforced by 1" strap iron appropriately bradded and also reinforced at any points necessary to insure rigidity.
While the operation of the improved car icing apparatus of the invention should be readily apparent from the above description, a brief summary of such operation will now be given. Cakes of ice from any suitable source are fed onto the conveyor iii and moved thereon to the ice breaker 3B. The ice breaker cracks or breaks the cakes of ice into smaller pieces which fall or are pushed by the following cakes of ice into a short stationary inclined chute 2 From this chute the pieces of ice are selectively directed by the pivoted gate 2 into one or the other of the inclined chutes 2 and Z from which they are discharged onto the conveyor belt is. This conveyor belt together with the transfer conveyors i5 moves the pieces of ice in a circuitous closed path adjacent the oppositely disposed rows of hatch openings, thus continuously distributing the ice to i;
any desired point of use. Loaders 54 selectively divert the ice from the runs of the conveyor ii! at any desired point or points along the path of movement thereof and discharge it into selected ice bunkers. Ice which is not diverted from the conveyor runs continues to move in a closed circuitous path and so is continuously available for use at any desired point or for recovery and reuse.
It will thus be apparent that the present invention provides an improved apparatus for quickly, economically and efiiciently icing refrigerator cars. While I have illustrated and described a preferred embodiment of the invention, I do not intend to be limited thereby as the scope of the invention is best defined in the appended claims.
1. Apparatus for icing the bunkers of a plurality of refrigerator cars which present longitudinal rows of transversely aligned hatch openings, comprising a platform laterally adjacent one longitudinal row of hatch openings, an endless belt type ice distributing conveyor mounted upon said platform and having laterally spaced substantially horizontally disposed runs movable longitudinally of the platform in opposite directions, means for directing ice into said runs selectively, and bunker loading means connected to said platform movable longitudinally along said runs and providing lateral outlets for ice therefrom.
2. Apparatus for icing the bunkers of refrigerator cars as defined in claim 1 in which said conveyor is provided with end supporting means adapted to support the end portions thereof in substantially vertical positions.
3. Apparatus for icing the bunkers of refrigerator cars as defined in claim 1 including supporting rollers adapted to support the ends of said conveyor in substantially vertical positions, and means adjacent said rollers for twisting said runs to facilitate movement thereof onto and from said rollers.
4. Apparatus for icing the bunkers of refrigerator cars as defined in claim 1 in which said bunker loading means comprises a plurality of ice loaders disposed laterally with respect to a run of said conveyor, means for adjustably supporting said loaders at selected positions alon said conveyor run, and means for selectively distributing ice from said conveyor run to a selected loader.
5. Apparatus for icing the bunkers of refrigorator cars as defined in claim 1 including transverse transfer conveyors mounted between the longitudinally movable runs of the endless belt type conveyor adjacent opposite ends thereof for transferring the ice from one run to the other.
6. Apparatus for icing the bunkers of a plurality of refrigerator cars which present longitudinal rows of transversely aligned hatch openings, comprising a platform laterally adjacent one longitudinal row of hatch openings, an ice breaker disposed above said platform, means for delivering cakes of ice thereto, an endless belt type ice distributing conveyor means disposed above said platform and providing laterally spaced substantially horizontal runs movable longitudinally of the platform in opposite directions below said breaker, means for discharging broken ice from said breaker selectively upon said runs, and bunker loading means movably connected to said platform and providing lateral outlets for ice at selected points longitudinally of said runs.
7. Apparatus for icing the bunkers of a plurality of refrigerator cars as defined in claim 6 in which the means for discharging broken ice from said breaker selectively upon said runs comprises a pivoted gate member.
8. Apparatus for icing the bunkers of a plurality of refrigerator cars which presents a longitudinal row of hatch openings comprising an elongated platform, an ice supply means mounted on said platform, belt conveyor means movably mounted on said platform, said belt conveyor means including laterally spaced substantially parallel runs movable longitudinally in opposite directions on opposite sides of said ice supply means, means for directing ice to said runs selectively, and bunker loading means movably connected to said platform providing lateral outlets for ice from said conveyor runs.
VAUGHAN B. WILLIAMS, SR.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 747,546 Garrett Dec. 22, 1903 925,817 Lorch June 22, 1909 1,407,391 Downer Feb. 21, 1922 1,428,234 Huebsch Sept 5, 1922 1,465,609 McBeth et a1 Aug. 21, 1923 1,479,378 Davis Jan. 1, 1924 1,506,907 Jackson Sept. 2, 1924 1,885,58 Brandt Nov. 1, 1932 2,063,431 Grayson et al. Dec. 8, 1936 2,113,493 Phillips Apr. 5, 1938 2,544,431 McLain et a1 Mar. 6, 1951 FOREIGN PATENTS Number Country Date 475,247 Great Britain 1937