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Publication numberUS3116710 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 7, 1964
Filing dateFeb 10, 1960
Priority dateFeb 10, 1960
Publication numberUS 3116710 A, US 3116710A, US-A-3116710, US3116710 A, US3116710A
InventorsCass Lester E
Original AssigneeCass Lester E
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for controllably varying the elevation and angle of thrust of outboard moto propellers
US 3116710 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

L. E. cAss 3,116,710 APPARATUS FOR CONTROLLABLY VARYING THE ELEVATION Jan. 7, 1964 AND ANGLE OF THRUST OF OUTBOARD MOTOR PROPELLERS 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Feb. 10, 1960 INVENTOR. Lzsrzzz I C'Ass WWW A T TORNE Y L. E. cAss 3,116,710 APPARATUS FOR CONTROLLABLY VARYING THE ELEVATION Jan. 7, 1964 AND ANGLE OF THRUST OF OUTBOARD MOTOR PROPELLERS 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Feb. 10, 1960 INVENTOR. LESTER E 0.488

ATTORNEY United States Patent Ofiice 3,116,710 Patented Jan. 7, 1964 3,116,710 APPARATUS FOR CONTROLLABLY VARYING THE ELEVATION AND ANGLE OF THRUST F OUTBOARD MQTOR PROPELLERS Lester 1E. Cass, Anolka, Minn. Filed Feb. 1t}, 1950, Ser. No. 7,858 3 Claims. (Cl. 115-41) The present apparatus relates generally to apparatus for controlling the operating angle of thrust of outboard motor propellers, and more particularly relates to an apparatus for controlling and varying the angle of thrust of an outboard motor propeller at any time, including periods while the outboard motor is in actual operation. In addition, the apparatus may be employed to elevate the motor about its pivot axis to a point at which the pro peller is actually raised above the surface of the water.

In the past, apparatus have been utilized whereby the elevation or angle of thrust of an outboard motor propeller could be varied. However, none of these devices are designed to permit the angle of thrust of the propeller to be controllably varied while the motor is actually in operation and the craft under way. In addition, the angle of thrust of a propeller may be controllably varied from a remote control position such as from the operators seat. In boating, it is normally desired to have the boat or craft plane in order that maximum operating efficiency, economy, and speed may be achieved. Inasmuch as boats employing outboard motors are normally loaded somewhat differently upon each individual boating occasion, it is generally desirable to provide means for con trollably varying the angle of thrust of the propeller in order that planing may be achieved under any of the various operating conditions. For a given set of loading conditions, it is initially desirable to provide a maximum lift at the stern ortransom of the boat, and once planing has been achieved, the angle of thrust of the propeller should be modified so that it provides thrust in a direction substantially parallel to the surface of the water. Such a position maintains cavitation at a minimum during operation.

In the past, various apparatus have been proposed to accomplish varying the thrust angle of outboard motors, however, for the most part these apparatus have been designed so as to permit the thrust angle to be modified only while the boat is at rest. Therefore, according to the present invention, it is possible to modify the position of the motor while the same is operating and functioning. Accordingly, the angle of thrust may be varied between different operating characteristics of the boat under a given set of loading conditions.

Therefore, it is an object of the present invention to provide apparatus which is arranged to positively modify and maintain the angle of thrust of a propeller of an outboard motor.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a mounting frame which is attachable to the transom of a boat and which extends rearwardly therefrom with a motor-engaging element associated therewith having power driven actuating means to controllably project the drive shaft housing outwardly or move the same to move inwardly with respect to the transom to thereby vary the angle at which the thrust of the propeller is directed.

Other and further objects of the present invention will be more fully apparent from a study of the following specification, appended claims and accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a side view, of a runabout boat, partially broken away, showing an outboard motor operatively aifixed to the transom thereof;

FIG. 2 is a partial perspective view of a boat transom having an outboard motor afiixed thereto, and having in combination therewith, a certain embodiment of the thrust control apparatus of the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a partial perspective view of the rear portion of a boat having a certain embodiment of the thrust control apparatus of the present invention operatively afixed thereto;

FIG. 4 is a top plan view of a segment of a boat transom having the thrust control apparatus of the present invention affixed thereto, a portion of the control apparatus being shown exploded;

FIG. 5 is a plan view, partly in section, of a portion of a control cylinder utilized in connection with the present invention, this figure being drawn to a slightly enlarged scale;

FIG. 6 is a partial view, on a slightly enlarged scale, of a locking arrangement of an outboard motor in combination with apparatus prepared in accordance with the present invention and showing the reverse gear locking claw operatively connected therewith;

FIG. 7 is a partial perspective view showing the front portion of the arrangement illustrated in FIG. 6, and showing the locking claw in retracted position;

FIG. 8 is a side view, partially in section, of a portion of the thrust plate utilized in connection with the present invention and illustrated in the connection mounting between the thrust plate and the cylinders;

FIG. 9 is an isometric view of the transom portion of a boat having a slightly modified thrust control apparatus prepared in accordance with the present invention attached thereto;

FIG. 10 is an isometric view of the transom portion of a boat having an outboard motor mounted thereon, and having a slightly modified thrust control apparatus shown in FIG. 9 operatively associated therewith;

FIG. 11 is a top plan view of the transom portion of a boat having an apparatus prepared in accordance with the present invention mounted thereon, and showing a portion of the cylinder and the support means of the yoke in exploded condition;

FIG. 12 is a partial view, on a slightly enlarged scale, of a somewhat modified locking arrangement of an outboard motor in combination with a modification of apparatus prepared in accordance with the present invention, and showing the locking claw operatively connected therewith; and

FIG. 13 is a partial perspective view of the locking arrangement showing a part of the yoke, claws, spring and part of the outboard motor bracket.

In accordance with the preferred modification of the present invention, a boat, such as a runabout boat generally designated 10 is shown having a conventional steering wheel and control means 11 and a transom 12 at the rear thereof and being further provided with an outboard motor generally designated 13. The boat and motor are provided with a thrust angle control apparatus generally designated 14, this apparatus being prepared in accordance with the preferred modification of the present invention. The motor 13 includes a power head 16, a drive shaft housing 17 and a propeller 18. A steering control bracket 19 is arranged along one side of the motor, the angular displacement of the bracket 19 being determined by the position of the steering mechanism 11 and correspondingly through cable drive mechanism 20. The motor is mounted and retained on the transom 12 by means of a hanger mechanism generally designated 21, and as is conventional, the hanger 21 is provided with a pair of clamping members, not shown, for securing the hanger 21 to the transom of a boat.

With particular reference to FIGS. 2, 3 and 4, the thrust control apparatus generally designated 14 includes the U- shaped yoke 25 having a thrust bar portion 26 and a pair of parallel disposed arms 27 and 28. Arms 27 and 28 are provided with means in the form of ears 27a and 28a for attaching a control arm thereto. For example, the hydraulic rams 29 and 30 are connected to the arms 27 and 28 respectively, these hydraulic rams being controlled by their respective hydraulic cylinders 31 and 32. It will be observed that cylinders 31 and 32, which are identical, are double acting. In this fashion, it is possible to both forceably raise and lower the yoke member 25 relative to the transom 12 as desired. Referring now in particular to cylinder 31, a pair of supply lines 34 and 35 are arranged in operative relation therewith, cylinder 34 being arranged to supply fluid under pressure for extending ram 29 therefrom, line 35 being arranged to provide fluid under pressure to retract ram 29 into the cylinder housing. A suitable supply pump 36 having a control knob 37 extending therefrom is provided to supply and control the flow of fluid to the cylinder 31 and 32. Of course, it will be appreciated that lines 34 and 35 are arranged to act in a similar fashion on both cylinders 31 and 32. Hydraulic control apparatus of the type shown at 36 and 37 are readily available commercially.

The opposite ends of cylinder 31 and 32 are provided with suitable anchoring shoes 3939, shoe 39 being arranged to rest or be anchored against the rear surface of transom 12. Shoe 39 is further provided with a pivot pin 46 which is arranged to be received through the appropriate mounting eye of cylinders 31. and 32.

Referring now in particular to FIGS. 4 and 5, it will be observed that the ram 30, for example, is anchored to the arm 23 through a pair of flexible bushings 41 and 42 secured thereto by anchoring means 43 and 44. In this connection, vibrational energy or shocks, when encountered from the motor are suppressed or cushioned and the cylinders 31 and 32 are rendered substantially insensitive thereto. In addition, the yoke is protected in this fashion.

During operation, the thrust on the thrust portion 26 of the yoke 25 tends to form one component of force which urges arms 28 and 29 inwardly toward one another. In order to support the arms 27 and 28 against this force, a pair of struts or support arms 46 and 47 are provided, these arms being arranged generally parallel to the plane in which the cylinders 31 and 32 lie, and at a slight angle thereto. In this manner, it is possible to utilize lighter materials for the yoke 25 than would otherwise be possible. It will be further observed that the yoke arms 28 and 29 are necessarily in the same plane and arranged parallel to the cylinders 31 and 32.

Referring now to FIG. 6, there is illustrated a means for counteracting a second component of force which tends to force the yoke downwardly or, in some cases, upwardly. Support bracket 51 which is a part of the motor is arranged to make contact with the face of thrust bar 26 along a mating surface 51a, this being the normal driving point of the motor. In addition, means are provided for retaining the drive shaft housing in place should the operator put the motor 13 in reverse gear. Of course, in reverse gear the directional thrust is such that the motor has a tendency to pivot upwardly from its normal operating position and the claw 48 is arranged as a portion of the thrust bar 26 to prevent this from occurring. The outboard motor is normally provided with a mating claw member or bracket 50. In addition to this feature, the claw member 48 is arranged to retain the yoke in its desired position relative to support bracket 51 and thereby avoid any twisting moment from the support ears 27a and 28a. Of course, member 50 is arranged to be retracted upwardly when the motor is in its forward operating position in order to prevent fracturing of the member 50 or of the yoke 25 in the event the motor strikes a submerged object and is accordingly violently pivoted upwardly. It will be recalled that the rubber bushings 41 and 42 assist in cushioning the shock and thereby tend to protect the yoke 25 from fracturing in such an event.

Referring now to FIGS. 9, 10, ll, 12 and 13 a somewhat modified form of the present invention is disclosed therein. Accordingly, transom 12 is provided with an outboard motor generally designated 55. The motor is mounted on the transom 12 by means of suitable hanger brackets 56 and 57. The thrust angle control apparatus generally designated 58 is provided with a yoke assembly 59 and a pair of hydraulic cylinders 69 and 61 adapted to control the angle of elevation of the yoke. Conventional hydraulic supply lines 62 and 63 are arranged to supply fluid under pressure to the double acting cylinders and 61. The yoke 59 is provided with a thrust member or plate 65 and a pair of parallelly disposed arms 66 and 67. The arms 66 and 67 terminate in ear members, 66a and 67a respectively, the ears being arranged to receive the ram members 68 and 69 therethrough. As was explained previously in connection with the apparatus described in FIGS. 2-8, the cylinders 60 and 61 are double-acting and hence able to control the relative position of the yoke 59 at any desired elevation. The cylinders 60 and 61 are provided with mounting shoes 79 and 71 respectively, the shoes being arranged to be attached to the boat transom and hence operate as an anchor point for the cylinders 65) and 61.

In order to prevent collapse of the yoke number 59, a transverse support arm 72 is arranged between the arms 66 and 67 support arm 72 being pivotally retained adjacent ear 66a by pin 73. A shear pin is provided at 74 to complete the assembly. Therefore, if, during operation, the propeller portion of the drive shaft should strike a submerged object and the reaction elevates the position of the propeller and hence pivots the motor upwardly, shear pin 74 will break thereby permitting the release of arm '72.

Referring now to FIG. 12, the thrust bar 65 has a pair of projecting ears 75 and '76 protruding thereover, and having a retainer pin 77 arranged therebetween. The motor includes a thrust plate '79 and a reverse retaining claw 80 which is arranged to drop into place around the pin 77 upon the occurrence of the operator placing the engine in reverse gear. The dropping of claw 86 into place around the pin 77 prevents upward lift of the motor.

In operation, the operator starts the engine and proceeds, for example, forward at an accelerated rate of speed, under these conditions, the yoke is permitted to move forwardly until a point is reached where maximum lift is given to the stern of the boat. Upon reaching a rate of speed where planing is possible, the operator moves the yoke outwardly by applying force to the end of the cylinders until a point is reached where the propeller lies in a plane substantially parallel to the surface of the water. Under these conditions, maximum efficiency as pointed out hereinabove is obtainable.

A further feature of the invention lies in the preservation of application of thrust along a point at which the motor was designed to deliver this thrust. Accordingly, the thrust bar is arranged to meet the motor at this point for any given outboard motor design.

It will be appreciated that the examples given hereinabove are for purposes of illustration only and that those skilled in the art may be able to prepare apparatus which may vary from the illustrations hereinabove without actually departing from the scope of the present invention.

I claim as follows:

1. Apparatus for adjusting and maintaining a certain operative propelling position in outboard motors having a power head, a propeller, a vertically disposed driveshaft housing disposed therebetween, and a pivot member arranged between said power head and said propeller for tilting said outboard motor to and from an operative propelling position, and said motor being arranged to be mounted on a transom, said apparatus comprising a generally U-shaped yoke including a thrust bar and a pair of generally parallelly disposed support arms, said yoke being adapted to receive said drive shaft housing in abutting relation to said thrust bar, and control means to controllably move said yoke toward and away from said transom and to maintain said motor in a certain predetermined operative propelling position, said control means including a pair of double-acting hydraulically actuated rams pivotally connected at their inner ends to said transom and connected at their outer ends to the respective ends of said yoke and disposed outwardly from and generally parallel to each of said yoke arms, and means for actuating said rams.

2. Apparatus for adjusting and maintaining a certain operative propelling position in outboard motors having a power head, a propeller, a vertically disposed drive shaft housing disposed therebetween, and a pivot member arranged between said power head and said propeller for tilting said outboard motor to and from operative propelling positions, said motor being arranged to be mounted on a transom, said apparatus comprising a generally U- shaped yoke including a thrust bar and a pair of parallelly disposed support arms, said yoke being adapted to receive said drive shaft housing in abutting relation to said thrust bar, and control means to controllably move said yoke toward and away from said transom and to maintain said motor in a certain predetermined operative propelling position, said control means including a pair of doubleacting hydraulically actuated rams disposed outwardly from and generally parallel to each of said yoke arms, said hydraulically actuated rams adapted to be anchored on and to react against said transom.

3. Apparatus for adjusting and maintaining a certain operative propelling position in outboard motors having a power head, a propeller, a vertically disposed drive shaft housing disposed therebetween, and a pivot member arranged between said power head and said propeller for tilting said outboard motor to and from operative propelling positions, said motor being arranged to be mounted on a transom, said apparatus comprising a generally U- shaped yoke including a thrust bar and a pair of parallelly disposed support arms, said yoke being adapted to receive said drive shaft housing adjacent to and abutting said thrust bar, and control means to controllably move said yoke toward and away from said transom and to maintain said motor in a certain predetermined operative propelling position, said control means including a pair of double-acting hydraulically actuated rams disposed outwardly from and generally parallel to each of said yoke arms, and strut means for reinforcing said arms.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,755,766 Wanzer July 24, 1956 2,893,342 Langford July 7, 1959 2,927,552 Mickey Mar. 8, 1960 3,008,445 Frank Nov. 14, 1961

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2755766 *Apr 14, 1954Jul 24, 1956Arthur W WanzerOutboard propeller mechanism for a vessel
US2893342 *May 6, 1957Jul 7, 1959Langford James VOutboard motor tilting unit
US2927552 *Apr 3, 1957Mar 8, 1960Mickey John ROutboard motor tilting device
US3008445 *Aug 4, 1958Nov 14, 1961Herbert H BlackOutboard motor lifting apparatus
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3324821 *May 18, 1965Jun 13, 1967Laughlin Raul GMotor assembly for boats
US4086869 *Feb 7, 1977May 2, 1978James Edward WoodruffBoat trim adjusting apparatus
US4545770 *Apr 30, 1984Oct 8, 1985Outboard Marine CorporationOutboard motor mounting arrangement
US4654014 *Oct 2, 1985Mar 31, 1987Sween CorporationOutboard motor trim system
US4687448 *Dec 13, 1985Aug 18, 1987Peirce James GOutboard motor tilt and trim adaptor apparatus and safety device
US5151057 *Apr 4, 1991Sep 29, 1992Yamaha Hatsudoki Kabushiki KaishaWater jet propulsion boat
US5176547 *Sep 9, 1991Jan 5, 1993Yamaha Hatsudoki Kabushiki KaishaWater jet propulsion unit
US5209683 *Jul 17, 1991May 11, 1993Yamaha Hatsoduki Kabushiki KaishaRemovable jet propulsion unit for watercraft
US5474013 *Mar 17, 1995Dec 12, 1995Trim Master Marine, Inc.Trim tab auto-retract and multiple switching device
US5924379 *Feb 9, 1998Jul 20, 1999Brunswick CorporationActuating mechanism with improved mounting structure
Classifications
U.S. Classification440/61.00R, 440/61.00F, 440/56
International ClassificationB63H20/10, B63H20/00
Cooperative ClassificationB63H20/10
European ClassificationB63H20/10