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Publication numberUS2650032 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 25, 1953
Filing dateDec 8, 1949
Priority dateDec 8, 1949
Publication numberUS 2650032 A, US 2650032A, US-A-2650032, US2650032 A, US2650032A
InventorsCharles E Godfrey
Original AssigneeAmerican Brake Shoe Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Track spike with circumferentially extending deformable projection
US 2650032 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


TRACK SPIKE WITH CIRCUMFERENTIALLY EXTENDING DEFORMABLE PROJECTION Charles E. Godfrey, Batavia, Ill., assignor to American Brake Shoe Company, New York, N. Y., a corporation of Delaware Application December 8, 1949, Serial No. 131,781


The invention relates in general to railroad track equipment, and more particularly to an improved railroad spike. The invention constitutes an improvement over Sandberg Patent No. 2,401,967, dated June 11, 1946.

The Sandberg spike, in its more specific aspects, relates to a railroad spike of the ordinary cut type, to the throat or neck of which is applied a series of longitudinally extending, deformable splines. The purpose of these splines is to take up, or compensate for, the relatively loose fit between the ordinary cut spike and the ordinary tie plate hole, due to tolerance variations.

The spike, according to the Sandberg patent, has in general performed quite satisfactorily its intended function of providing a tight bond between the spike and the tie plate. When properly applied, the Sandberg spike does not work out of its hole due to track movement under passage of trains and other causes; throat cutting of the spike has been entirely eliminated and spike killing of the wooden tie has been greatly reduced.

The spike shown in the Sandberg patent, however, h-as certain drawbacks. Under certain conditions, excessive driving force is required, especially when driving a spike whose size approaches the upper tolerance limit into a hole whose size approaches the lower tolerance limit; the Sandberg spike is also costly to manufacture in commercial quantities. Among the objects of the present invention are to overcome these drawbacks.

According to a preferred embodiment of my present invention, a spike (hereafter sometimes called a stud) is provided having a circular shank, a circular neck and a circular head. The deformable projections are in the form of cireumferenti-ally extending ribs or rings. These may be conveniently formed by rolling them into the body of the neck during manufacture. The neck is laid out on an upwardly diverging, slight taper extending a considerably greater distance than the depth of the hole in which the spike is to be used.

The spike is intended to be used primarily in anchor holes. The same spike may be used either in a square anchor hole or a round anchor hole. The end of the shank may be chamfered to provide a blunt point which is easily insertable and driven into the usual pre-bored hole in a wooden tie. If desired, the shank may be somewhat shorter than the shank of the conventional spike.

If desired, instead of rolling the circumferentially extending projections of my spike in the form of separate rings, they may be rolled in the form of a continuous helix. Or, if desired, the projections may be in the form of dimples or knobs formed by rolling during manufacture, by a process sometimes referred to as knurling. Also, if desired, instead of a blunt point, a chisel point may be provided.

The knobs or circumferentially extending ribs of my spike provide an entirely satisfactory bond with the Walls of either a round hole or a square anchor hole. The spaces between the knobs or ribs provide relief areas to accommodate the metal deformed when the spike is driven home. The combination of the slow taper and knobs or circularly extending ribs provides more of a take-up to accommodate the varying fits between each particular spike and each particular tie plate hole, due to tolerance variations.

The invention also consists in certain new and original features and combinations hereinafter set forth and claimed.

Although the novel features which are believed to be characteristic of this invention will be particularly pointed out in the claims appended hereto, the invention itself, as to its objects and advantages, and the manner in which it may be carried out, may be better understood by referring to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings forming apart hereof, in which:

Fig. 1 is a side view of a spike according to my invention;

Fig. 2 is a cross section through the neck of the spike taken on the line 22 of Fig. 1;

Fig. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary detail illustrating the condition of the spike during one stage of the process of manufacture, before the ribs or rings are rolled into the neck;

Fig. 4 is a view corresponding to Fig. 3, but illustrating the configuration of the spike after the ribs or rings have been rolled in;

Fig. 5 is an outside view of a modified form of spike having a chisel point and having its circumferentially extending ribs in the form of a helix;

Fig. 6 is a view of the chisel point, taken at right angles to the View shown in Fig. 5;

Fig. '7 is a fragmentary plan view of a tie plate assembly showing a spike according to the invention in anchor position and a conventional spike in line position;

Fig. 8 is a vertical section on the line 8-8 of Fig. 7. This figure illustrates, somewhat diagrammatically, the actual fit that may be obtained between a large tolerance spike and a small tolerance hole;

Fig. 9 is a detailed vertical section through an anchor hole illustrating, somewhat diagrammatically, the actual fit which may be obtained between a small tolerance spike and a large tolerance hole, in contrast to the fit shown in Fig. 8;

Fig. 10 is a detail of another form of tie plate, having circular anchor holes with which my spike may be used; and

Fig. 11 represents a transverse section through the neck of a further modified form of spike, taken along a line corresponding to the line 2-2 of Fig. 1; this form illustrates the projections in the form of knobs or dimples formed by knurl- In the following description and in the claims, various details will be identified by specific names for convenience, but they are intended to be as generic in their application as the art will permit.

Like reference characters denote like parts in the several figures of the drawings.

In the drawings accompanying and forming part of this specification, certain specific disclosure of the invention is made for purposes of explanation, but it will be understood that the details may be modified in various respects without departure from the broad aspect of the invention.

Referring now to the drawings, and more particularly to Figs. '7 to 9, a conventional rail H] is shown supported by a conventional tie plate I l which in turn rests upon a conventional wooden tie l2. Spikes, according to my present invention, denoted by l3, are shown in anchor position only. Conventional cut spikes 19 are shown in line position. It will be noted that these conventional spikes also illustrate the loose fit of the conventional cut spike in the conventional tie plate hole, as explained in the above-mentioned Sandberg patent. It will be understood that, if desired, spikes according to the present invention may also be used in line position but, at the present time, I intend to use my spikes in anchor position only. So far as the present invention is concerned, any other spike, including those shown in the Sandberg patent, may be used in line position.

The plate ll may have the usual seat 15 with ribs or shoulders 16 extending lengthwise of the rail. The plate, as shown, has four holes on each side of the rail; the two line holes H pass through the shoulders l6 and the two anchor holes [8 are spaced outwardly therefrom. All holes are of the same nominal size. It will be noted that the opposite walls of the holes II and i8 are parallel from the bottom up to a point part way their length, from which point they fiare slightly upwardly. This flare is caused by the punching operation during manufacture.

The rail may be a standard T-rail having head 20, web 2! and base flange 22. The tie I2 is the conventional wooden tie which may be of either so-called hard wood or soft wood, with the grain usually running the length of the tie. The tie maybe pre-bored for spikes, in accordance with conventional practice.

Referring now to Figs. 1 to 4, my new spike (sometimes referred to as a stud) will now be described. It consists, basically, of a spike made from circular stock and comprises a shank 2% whose end is chamfered to form a blunt point 25. At the neck, annular deformable ribs or rings 26 are provided adjoining the symmetrical head 21. It will be understood that, because the metal of the spike is softer than the metal of the plate, when the spike is driven, the annular splines 26 will be compressed or sheared off by the walls of the anchor hole to form a drive-tight fit, or bond, between the spike and the tie plate; this is discussed more in detail hereinafter.-

The construction of the spike or stud may be better understood by considering briefly the method by which it is made. The annular ribs 26 are rolled into the metal during manufacture, in a manner similar to rolling the threads in a conventional bolt or lag screw. This contributes largely to the low cost of manufacture.

In manufacturing the stud, the enlarged throat or neck portion 28, the head 21 and the cylindrical portion 3| below the head are formed on rod stock by upsetting, in any desired manner, during the process of manufacture; this results in a construction somewhat as illustrated in Figure 3. It will be noted that the neck 28 has a relatively long, slightly tapered, outside surface terminating in the cylindrical portion 3!. This is sometimes referred to as a slow taper. When the annular ribs 26 are rolled into the blank, the metal of the neck 28 fiows from the valleys 29 into the ribs 26. The dot-and-dash line 36 in Fig. 4 indicates the taper of the neck before the rolling operation.

It will be noted that the height of the rings 28 outside of the taper line 30, and the depth of the valleys 29 below this line, are substantially equal; and that the height of the rings is substantially equal throughout the length of the neck. It will be noted, too, that the diameter of the shank 24 approximates the diameter of the smallest valley 29 and that the diameter of the cylindrical portion 3| approximates the diameter at the midpoint of the height of the largest ring 26.

It will be understood that the shape of the rings 26 and their dimensions with respect to the shank 2d and to the underside of the head may vary depending upon the shape of the tie plate hole and other characteristics; and that the exact shapes of the deformable rings may vary somewhat from the form shown, depending upon the exact characteristics desired and also upon manufacturing considerations.

The spike or stud [3 may be driven in substantially the same manner as conventional spikes. As the spike is driven through the square tie plate hole l8 and into the pre-bored hole in the tie, it will pass loosely through the anchor hole l8; but since the pre-bored hole in the tie is smaller than the shank diameter, the shank 24 Will compress the fibres of the wooden tie as it is driven home. Thus, until the deformable rings 26 reach the tie plate hole, the driving force will be resisted only by the wooden tie. The blunt point 25 eases its way into the wood. Tests have shown that a chisel point is unnecessary with pre-bored holes. The shank 24 forms a snug and tight fit with the wood of the tie l2. If desired, the shank 24 may be somewhat shorter than the conventional shank.

As the deformable rings 26 contact the square tie plate hole 18, they are partly sheared off by the edges of the hole; the number of deformable rings entering the hole in the tie plate depends upon the particular fit v(compare Figs. 8 and 9). In the case of a large tolerance spike fitting a small tolerance hole, fewer of the rings 26 will enter the hole than in the case of a small tolerance spike fitting a-large tolerance hole.

'In any event, the rings 26 will be compressed and sheared by the straight sides of the tie plate hole and will deform and flow into the valleys 29 between the rings, and also somewhat into the corners of the square hole. The driving operation causes a tight bond to obtain between the neck. of the spike and the tie plate. Part of the deformation. will be a resilient deformation, with the result that the rings will be under compression by the walls of the tie plate hole and will firmly grip the tie plate.

It will be noted from Fig. 8 that, with a maximum tolerance spike in a minimum tolerance hole, only the four lower rings 26 engage the walls of the hole after the spike is driven home. It will be noted from Fig. 9 that, with a minimum tolerance spike in a maximum tolerance hole, the upper four rings 26 engage the walls of the hole after the spike is driven home. It will be understood that the average size spike will engage the average size hole somewhere in between these two extremes.

It will be noted that the longitudinal extent of the neck area having the deformable rings 26 extends somewhat more than the depth of the anchor hole; also, that the rings gradually increase in diameter upwardly, following the gradual taper. This is provided for the purpose of giving additional take-up so that greater tolerance compensation can be obtained, than could be obtained merely from the use of the deformable projections on a uniform diameter shank or with a shank having a shorter taper or a taper on only certain sides. It will be noted also that a substantial part of the cylindrical portion 3| projects above the tie plate to provide room for the ordinary pulling tool (referred to below) to be inserted under the head 21.

In the present case, the slow taper is of uniform slope throughout the entire length of the neck and around the neck, and the rings are of uniform depth with respect to the body of the neck from which they project, both circumferentially and lengthwise of the spike.

Referring now to Fig. 10, the construction here follows the construction of Figs. '7 to 9, except that circular holes 33 are provided in anchor position. It will be understood that the circular holes have a flare similar to the square holes, caused by the punching operation when the holes are punched in the tie plate during manufacture. Since this construction is otherwise the same as that of Figs. 7 to 9, no further comment is necessaryexcept to say that the deformable neck rings here will be engaged substantially around the entire periphery of the round hole instead of mainly at the flat sides of the square hole.

Referring now to Figs. 5 and 6, a further modification is illustrated. Here the spike is provided with a chisel point 36; and the deformable projections are shown in the form of a true helix 3! which follows the same slow taper as the separate rings in Fig. 4. The true helical thread 31 is formed, by rolling it into the enlarged neck 28 of the blank in a manner similar to that which the separate rings are rolled into the metal, during the process of manufacturing the spike.

Referring now to Fig. 11, the deformable projections in this form comprise a series of knobs or dimples indicated by 38. In this form the separate rings are circumferentially interrupted to form courses of knobs or dimples 38. The helical form may also be interrupted to form courses of kriobsor dimples. The knobs or dimples mayalso be arranged at random along the neck of the spike. In any case, the knobs or dimples are formed by rolling them into the enlarged throat or neck portion 28 of the blank shown in Fig. '3, during manufacture, by the well known process of knurling. The shape and height of the knobs or dimples, and the depth of the valleys between, may be varied as necessary or desirable.

In either the case of the separate annular ribs or in the case of the helical rib, it will be noted that the ribs are continuous circumferentially and are discontinuouslongitudinally. The valleysibetween the ribs providerelief areas in which the metal of the'ribs can flow when the ribs are compressed and deformed as the spike is driven home into the anchor hole. In the case of the knurled projections, additional relief is provided since the knobs or dimples have relief areas on all sides; this is advantageous in case of using the spike in a round hole.

It will be understood that the chisel point and the blunt point may be used with any of the above described constructions of deformable projections.

Thus, an improved spike or stud is provided which has deformable projections, which compensate for tolerance variations and which form a drive-tight fit or bond between the spike and the anchor hole, whether the anchor hole is round or square or of some other shape. The valleys between the ribs, whether in the separate ring form or in the helical rib form, provide clearance to take the metal deformed from the ribs; the valleys on all sides of the dimples or knobs perform the same function. Ordinary driving and pulling tools, such as used for conventional spikes, may be used; no excessive driv-' ing or pulling pressure is required. The spike is driven until a good drive-tight fit is obtained; the slight taper takes up tolerance variations between the one extreme of a large spike in a small hole and the other extreme of a small spike in a large hole. This relieves the deformable projections themselves of taking up all the variation in tolerance conditions and more nearly equalizes the deformation that the ribs must undergo under all tolerance conditions. The separate rings, the helical rib, and the knobs or dimples may be applied to the spike at low cost. The flare at the upper end of the tie plate hole and curved contour of the deformable projections facilitates starting the neck into the tie plate hole. In cases where the tie plate holes are punched with closer tolerance than customarily employed in conventional tie plates, the slight taper may be omitted and the deformable projections alone used to compensate for variations in size of spike and hole.

While certain novel features of the invention have been disclosed herein, and are pointed out in the annexed claims, it will be understood that various omissions, substitutions and changes may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of the invention.

What is claimed is:

1. In a railroad track assembly, a wooden tie having abored cylindrical hole, a metal tie'plate resting on said tie, said tie plate having a hole whose surrounding walls extend between the upper and lower faces of the tie plate, said tie plate hole being in register with said bored tie hole, and a spike disposed in said registered holes, said spike having a head, a cylindrical shank and a round neck, said neck having projecting portions engaging said surrounding walls of the tie plate hole and held in a state of elastic compression by said surrounding walls, thus bonding the spike to the tie plate so that said tie plate and its bonded spike will move as a unit, said cylindrical shank snugly engaging the cylindrical walls of the bored tie hole.

2. A track assembly according to claim 1 in which said neck has a slight, upwardly diverging taper extending a somewhat greater distance than the thickness of the tie plate and said projecting portions are in the form of rings extending all the way around said neck.

3. A railroad track assembly according to claim 1 in which the tie plate hole is square, so that the relationship of the round neck to the square hole protects the projecting portions at the corners of the hole from deformation so that, after pulling the spike, fresh deformable projections are available for re-driving the spike.

4. A railroad track spike for use with a metal tie plate resting on a wooden tie for the purpose of minimizing sliding movement of the tie plate on the tie under the action of railroad traffic, said tie plate havin a hole, said tie having a bored cylindrical hole in register with the tie plate hole; said spike being of a metal softer than the tie plate, said spike including a cylindrical shank, a round neck and a head, said neck having deformable projecting portions disposed uniformly around the neck, said projecting portions being spaced apart from adjacent projecting portions to provide relief valleys therebetween, said shank being of such diameter as to pass freely through the tie plate hole and to engage snugly in the bored tie hole, said projecting portions standing out from the body of the neck a sufficient distance to enter into the tie plate hole and to firmly engage with the walls of the tie plate hole when the spike is driven home, the length of said cylindrical shank being considerably greater than the length of said neck to provide bearing surface between the spike and the wooden tie.

5. A railroad spike according to claim 4 in which the neck has a slight, upwardly diverging taper extending at least the thickness of the tie plate but not greatly below the bottom of the tie plate, which taper is substantially uniform around the neck, and said projecting portions are in the form of rings extending around the neck.


References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 264,953 Maynadier Sept. 26, 1882 1,170,603 Brunner Feb. 8, 1916 1,203,546 Parsons Oct. 31, 1916 1,216,344 Miller Feb. 20, 1917 1,306,641 Steenstrup June 10, 1919 1,373,875 Fallon Apr. 5, 1921 1,802,560 Kerwin Apr. 28, 1931 2,049,105 Clarke July 28, 1936 2,147,343 Hokanson Feb. 14, 1939 2,196,144 Eckler Apr. 2, 1940 2,231,771 Murphy Feb. 11, 1941 2,314,898 Purinton May 30, 1943 2,389,464 Snyder Nov. 20, 1945 2,401,967 Sandberg June 11, 1946 2,417,385 Tilly Mar. 11, 1947 2,432,697 Task Dec. 10, 1947 FOREIGN PATENTS Number Country Date 242,098 Germany Dec. 23, 1911

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U.S. Classification238/375, 411/922, 411/455
International ClassificationE01B9/06
Cooperative ClassificationY10S411/922, E01B9/06
European ClassificationE01B9/06