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Publication numberUS3172461 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 9, 1965
Filing dateDec 19, 1962
Priority dateDec 19, 1962
Publication numberUS 3172461 A, US 3172461A, US-A-3172461, US3172461 A, US3172461A
InventorsJoseph A Langer
Original AssigneeJoseph A Langer
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Door driving mechanism
US 3172461 A
Abstract  available in
Images(3)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 9, 1965 LANGER 3,172,461

DOOR DRIVING MECHANISM Filed D60. 19, 1962 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 34 3 35 4 V I y INVENTOR. JOSEPH A. LA/VGEI? ATTORNEYS March 9, 1965 J. A. LANGER 3,172,461

DOOR DRIVING MECHANISM Filed Dec. 19, 1962 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR. JOSEPH A- LA/VG'ER 2 -61 uromvsrs March 9, 1965 A LANGER 3,172,461

DOOR DRIVING MECHANISM Filed Dec. 19, 1962 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 V AV U 2 l1 1 4 4 5 5422222 INVENTOR.

JOSEPH ALA/V651? k -KW- ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,172,461 DOOR DRIVING MEQHANISM Joseph A. Langer, 941 Geary Sh, dan Francisco, Qalit. Filed Dec. 19, 1962, tier. No. 245,725 6 Claims. (Cl. 169-133) This invention relates to vertically opening or rolling type doors for buildings, and more particularly it relates to an improved barrel drive mechanism for such doors.

As commonly referred to in the building industry a rolling type door is one composed of a series of connected pieces which give it a flexibility in one dimension and enable it to be lifted vertically by either winding it up on a roller like a window shade or by moving it along tracks into a stowed position. Such doors are particularly adaptable in buildings having large door openings for accommodating freight handling vehicles or for service or garage facilities. In smaller buildings including private dwellings, such doors are particularly suitable as garage closures. Since in many installations rolling doors are made of relatively heavy durable material and are large so as to cover an extensive opening, such doors are usually heavy, and a considerable amount of power is required to manipulate them from the closed to the open position. In some rolling door constructions heretofore devised, a complicated and expensive reduction gear mechanism was utilized to provide the power necessary to rotate the barrel and thus wind up the door. In my Patent Number 2,540,742, I was able to eliminate the need for a reduction gear mechanism by utilizing a coiled spring mechanism within the barrel for lifting the door and winding it around the barrel when opening the door. While this arrangement provided the necessary power in many rolling door installations it had several inherent disadvantages which now have been overcome by the present invention.

One major object of the present invention is to provide an improved rolling door drive mechanism that will provide increased power and smoother operation for doors of greater size.

Another object oi the invention is to provide a driving mechanism well adapted for operating vertically lifting doors of several difierent types.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a rolling door mechanism that will eliminate any binding and will reduce friction between components within the barrel, thereby making the door easy to control with a minimum of effort during its opening and closing. With my invention the winding barrel mechanism provides a steady torsional force during the entire travel of the door that results in remarkably smooth operation.

Still another object of my invention is to provide an improved rolling door mechanism with fewer parts that can be arranged in a more compact package, and which is more durable.

Another object of my invention is to provide a rolling door mechanism that is particularly well adapted for ease and economy of manufacture.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a rolling door mechanism wherein the wind-up power for the flexible door can be readily adjusted with initial torsional energy to obtain the desired operating characteristics.

The foregoing and other important objects of my inven tion are accomplished by a driving barrel mechanism which, broadly considered, comprises a series of nested torque tubes supported within the barrel housing and connected at alternate ends. The innermost tube extending outside the barrel is restrained in a fixed position and the outermost tube is fixed internally to one end of the barrel, so that rotation of the barrel causes the 3,172,461 Patented Mar. 9, 1965 tubes to twist and store or release torsional energy when the door is operated. When the door is being lowered its weight helps to rotate the barrel in windingmp the torque tubes, whereas when the door is to be opened by raising it, the stored torsional energy is released to overcome the door weight and any mechanical friction.

Other objects, advantages and features of my invention will become apparent from the following detailed description and from the drawing, in which:

FIG. 1 is a view in front elevation of a typical flexible door installation according to the invention with portions of the door removed to conserve space;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged view in elevation and in section showing the internal details of a barrel mechanism embodying principles of the invention with a central portion removed to conserve space;

FIG. 3 is a view in section taken along the line 33 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4- is a view in section taken along the line 4-4 of F IG. 2;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged view in elevation and in section showing the internal details of a modified form of barrel mechanism in accordance with the invention;

FIG. 6 is a fragmentary view in front elevation of a barrel mechanism according to the invention in combination with a sliding type door;

FIG. 7 is a view in side elevation and in section taken along line 7-7 of FIG. 6;

FIG. 8 is an enlarged fragmentary view in section taken along line 88 of FIG. 7.

Referring to the drawing, FIG. 1 shows a typical lifting rolling type door installation having a barrel drive mechanism 10 embodying the principles of the invention. The door 11 is ailixed to the outer surface of a barrel 12 which is an elongated tubular member. The barrel is held in place above the doorway 13 and attached to the wall 14 of the building by some appropriate means such as a pair of support brackets 15. The brackets 15 may be provided with an inner race of ball bearings so that barrel 12 can rotate freely during its operation. To one end of the barrel 12 is rigidly attached a star or gear wheel 17 or some equivalent device by a control chain it; that hangs downward at one side of the doorway 13. As the chain 18 is pulled, the gear wheel 17 rotates the barrel in the proper direction and causes the door 11 to be raised or lowered.

In accordance with the invention, the barrel drive mechanism 10 as shown in detail in FIG. 2, continuously supplies the necessary torsional power so that the door 11 Will operate smoothly with a minimum of effort. This torsional power within the barrel 12 is provided by a torsion spring 19 comprising a series of interconnected coaxial torque tubes. The tubes are connected consecutively to each other and to the barrel 12 in a unique manner so that their equivalent operating length is much greater than the barrel itself.

In the embodiment of FIG. 2, the barrel casing 12 is provided with a pair of hub members 21 and 22 that are atiixed rigidly to its opposite ends. On its outer end surface the hub member 21 is rigidly attached to the gear wheel 17 by means of a flanged fitting 23. Extending axially inwardly the inner end surface 24 of the hub 21 Within the barrel 12 is a cylindrical cavity 25 that forms a bearing support or journal for one end of the coaxial torsion spring 19. A suitable bushing or bearing 26 is installed within the cavity 25.

At the opposite end of the barrel casing 12 the hub member 22 has a central bore 27 which is provided with a bearing 28 at its outer end that also supports the torsion spring 19. In the embodiment of FIG. 2 the torsion spring consists of a first inner tubular member 29 that extends into the barrel casing 12 and is supported by the ice ,3), bearing 28.. The free end of the first tubular member; 29 extending outside the barrel casing 12 is held rigidly by some suitable means. As shown in FIG. 2, I prefer to hold the tube 29 near its'end 3% by means of a tension whee-1'31 which has a series of circumferentially spaced apart lugs 32 each with a radial opening 33. The wheel 31 can then berotated to place an initial twist and thus store torsional energy in the spring motor 19 withthe door in the up position. 7 When the whce'l fnl has been turned initially the desired amount, the nearest opening 33 can be aligned with an opening 34 in a fixed bracket 35 that is fixed tothe wall or to a bracket 15 adjacent the'wheel 31. A removable pin 36 then can be inserted through the aligned openings 33 and 34 to hold the wheel 31 in position. Other suitable means could also be'used for holding the free end 36 of the inner tubular member 29' in a fixed position within the scope of the invention.

. The inner tubular ,member 29, held tightly as its outside endfill extends axially within the barrel casing 12 and is fixed at its opposite end 37 to asecond larger coaxial tubular member 3%. The tubular member 38 has a relatively short necked-down end portion 39 that fits tightly around the end of the inner tubular member 29.

the torque tubes 2% and 38 together. At their joined together ends il, the members 29 and 38 are rotatably supported within the cavity 25 by the bearing 26. Except at the end connection ill of the outer tube 38 is outer tube 38 is afiixed to the inner side of the hub member 22 by means of a sleeve member 42 that is held to the end of the. tube 33 by a pair of clamps 43 or by welding, if desired. a

In solving the problem that certain materials provide more beneficialcharacterof providing a smooth operating rolling door drive mechanism '10 I have discovered ber of connected torque tubes can be utilizedwithin the scope of the invention. 7

FIGS. 6-8 show an installation for a flexible door 50 comprising a pluralityof individual members 51 that are hinged together longitudinally. The ends of the members 51 are provided with rollers 52 (FIG. 8) which are adapted to ride in channel shaped tracks '53. The tracks 53 extend upward from opposite sides of the door opening 54 and curve inwardly above it to provide the storage position fol-the door in the opening position.

The embodiment shown in FIGS; 6-8 illustrates the versatility of the barrel drive mechanism ltlb embodying the principles of my invention. In this arrangement the barrelhousing 12b is supported by hanging brackets- 15b in the aforesaid manner and is alsoprovided with both a gear wheel. l'iband a torquewhe'el 31b. However,

7 fixedly mounted on the barrel near; its opposite ends are i a considerably larger and therefore does not touch or interfere with the inner coaxial tube 29. At its other end the a istics. For example, it is preferred that the torque tubes be preferably made of a strong, resilient form of. steel'with good elastic properties, such as a heat treated high carbon H .steel. A feature of my invention is that, in using metal tubes forsupplying thetorsional energy to operate a rolling door, a strong, positive but smooth operating force can, be provided, and the operating characteristics of the drive mechanism, such as theamount of wind-upper force exerted can be readily tailored for a certain door size and weight by using tubes with particular lengths and wall thicknesses.

As shown in the embodiment of FIG. 5, more than two 7 coaxial torque tubes can be utilized if desired to provide the force and operating characteristics required. In FIG. 5, the barrelmechanism ltla has end hub members 2111 and 22a and aninner torque tube 2% that is fixed at one end outsidegthe barrel 12a and is connected to a'second tube 38;: which in turn is connected to a third tube a pair of'drums or large sheaves 54; A pair of flexible cables 55' are each tiedat oneoftheir ends to the drums 54 and at their other end by a bracket 56 to the lowermost members 51 of flexible/door 50. Thus, when the door 5% is to be raised the torsional energy stored'in the barrel mechanism ltib'by the end connected concentric tubes as shown in FIGS. 2-5 drives thedrumsto pull the door St? upward with its rollers SZguidirig. through the tracks From the foregoing, the operation of my improved rolling door mechanism should be apparent However, in summary, with reference to FIGSJI and'Qr the free end 3% of the torsion spring 19. extending from the barrel casing 12 is first rotated by means'such asthejtorque wheel 31' to. supply some. initial twist and thus an amount of potential torsional energy in the barrel mechanism ltl which is suflleient to hold 'the. rolled up door .11 in place. When the door ll is to unwound, from the barrellZ and thus lowered, the barrel is rotated by the ichain lfi which.

turns the gear wheel 17. This rotation providesadditiona1 twist to the torsion spring 19,fnarnely,jthe-connccted tubes29 and 38-.(EIGL 2).; Thus, Wiicfi lhe chain .lti'is released and pulled in the opposite direction the door 11 will rise easily'and rewind itself around the barrel ll.

Because of the torquetube arrangement the operation is smooth, yet positive and will remain so 'overa'long .pe-

riodot" use due to the lack'of 'fatigue and the. inherent elasticity properties of the metal; torque tubes, the lack of friction, and-the elimination of thrust force compd nents in my mechanism. Y

To those skilled in the art. to which 'lthis invention relates, many changes in-construction and widely differing embodiments and applications of the invention suggest themselves witho'ut" departing, from the spirit and feren'ce between the concentric tubes, at suitable bearing member 48 is provided between the end connection of the tion ofthe tubes 45 and 46 and the tubes 38a. The resuiting torsion spring provided by the connected tubes 29a; 38a, 45 and 45 is equivalent to a single tube having almost four times the length of the barrel 12a. The over- 4 7 all etfect of a longer torque tube is to increase. the

amount of wind-up that can be afforded'tothe barrel 12a and thus the length of door that be rolled on the barrel.

Within the practicallimits of barrel diameter any nume scope of the invention. Thedisclosures and the' description herein are purely illustrative and are not intended to 'be in anysense limiting.

I claim;

the combination comprisingzf t a barrel casing, connectedtothe door and adapted to raise or lower it when said 'barrelcasingrotates; a pair of hub membersfixedat opposite ends of said barrel casing; e V a plurality of concentric radially spaced apart torsionally elastic tubes withinsaid barrel casing; including 1. Ina drive mechanism for a' vertically opening door,

an innermost tube having one end extending axially 7 outside said barrel casing. and an outermost'tube completely within said barrelcasing, said outermost tube beingfixed at one end to one of said hub members within said barrel; i p 7 each of said tubes. being connected to their adjacent inner :and outertubes at one: end, thereby forming a continuous segmented tube within saidlbarrel casing and having an effective length substantially'greater than that of said barrelcasing; a'first bearing means in one of said hub members' tor supporting the innermost tube and the adjacent tube connected thereto;

a second bearing means in the other said hub member for supporting said innermost tube near its end extending outside said barrel casing;

and means adjacent said barrel casing for holding the end of said innermost tube outside said barrel in a fixed predetermined position;

whereby all of said connected tubes will twist and store potential torsional energy when said barrel casing is rotated as the door is lowered and thereby provide driving power for opening the door when the energy is released.

2. In a drive mechanism for a vertically opening rolling door, the combination comprising:

a barrel casing attached to one end of the door and adapted to raise or lower it when said barrel casing rotates;

a pair of hub members fixed at opposite ends of said barrel casing;

a plurality of concentric metal torsion tubes within said barrel casing including an innermost tube having one end extending axially outside said barrel casing and an outermost tube completely within said barrel casing, all said tubes being engaged with an adjacent tube only at a limited connection area at one end and being otherwise spaced outwardly and thereby providing clearance with the adjoining tube, said outermost tube being fixed at one end to one of said hub members within said barrel;

each of said tubes being connected to their adjacent inner and outer tubes at one end, thereby forming a continuous segmented tube within said barrel casing that has an effective length substantially greater than that of said barrel casing;

a first bearing means in one of said hub members for supporting the innermost tube and the adjacent tube connected thereto;

a second bearing means in the other said hub member for supporting said innermost tube near its end extending outside said barrel casing;

and means adjacent said barrel casing for holding the end of said innermost tube outside said barrel in a fixed predetermined position;

whereby all of said connected tubes will twist and store potential torsional energy when said barrel casing is rotated as the door is lowered.

3. In a drive mechanism for a vertically opening door,

the combination comprising:

a barrel casing connected to the door and adapted to raise or lower it when said barrel casing rotates;

a pair of hub members fixed at opposite ends of said barrel casing;

a plurality of concentric metal torsion tubes within said barrel casing including an innermost tube having one end extending axially outside said barrel casing and an outermost tube completely within said barrel casing, said outermost tube being fixed at one end within said barrel;

each of said tubes except said innermost tube having a necked-down portion at one end adapted to fit tightly around the adjacent inner tube, said tubes being connected to their adjacent inner and outer tubes at one end, thereby forming a continuous segmented tube within said barrel casing that has an effective length substantially greater than that of said barrel casing;

a first bearing means in one of said hub members for supporting the innermost tube and the necked-down end portion of the adjacent tube connected thereto;

a second bearing means in the other said hub member for supporting said innermost tube near its end extending outside said barrel casing;

and means adjacent said barrel casing for holding the 6 end of said innermost tube outside said barrel in a fixed predetermined position;

whereby all of said connected tubes will twist and store potential torsional energy when said barrel casing is rotated as the door is lowered.

4. In a drive mechanism for a vertically opening door,

the combination comprising:

a barrel casing connected to the door and adapted to raise or lower it when said barrel casing rotates;

a pair of hub members fixed within said barrel casing at opposite ends thereof;

a pair of concentric metal torsion tubes connected together within said barrel casing including an innermost tube having one end extending axially outside said barrel and an outermost tube completely within said barrel casing, said outermost tube having a necked down end portion connected to said innermost tube and being fixed at its other end to a said hub member within said barrel;

one of said hub members having a bore providing bearing means for supporting said innermost tube with said barrel casing, and the other said hub member having a central axially aligned cavity for supporting the necked down end portion of said outermost tube and the connected innermost tube;

and means adjacent said barrel casing for holding the end of said innermost tube outside said barrel in a fixed predetermined position;

whereby said connected tubes will twist and store potential torsional energy when said barrel casing is rotated as the door is lowered and will provide driving power for opening the door when the stored energy is released.

5. In a drive mechanism for a vertically opening door,

the combination comprising:

a barrel casing connected to the door and adapted to raise or lower it when said barrel casing rotates;

a plurality of interconnected concentric metal torsion tubes within said barrel casing including an innermost tube having one end extending axially outside said barrel casing and an outermost tube completely within said barrel casing, said outermost tube being fixed at one end within said barrel;

all of said tubes except said innermost tube having a necked down end portion, and means for connecting each of said tubes to their adjacent inner and outer tubes at a necked down end portion on one end, thereby forming a continuous segmented tube within said barrel casing having an effective length substantially greater than that of said barrel casing;

and means adjacent said barrel casing for holding the end of said innermost tube outside said barrel in a fixed predetermined position;

whereby all of said connected tubes will twist and store potential torsional energy when said barrel casing is rotated as the door is lowered and thereby provide driving power for opening the door when the energy is released.

6. The driving mechanism as described in claim 5 including annular means mounted between said concentric tubes within said barrel casing for preventing engagement between adjacent tubes during actuation of the mechanism.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,416,071 5/22 Smurr -189 2,032,951 3/36 Pixley 160-191 2,311,703 2/43 Sihvonen et al. 160-191 2,811,347 10/57 Cass 267-57 2,831,219 4/58 Nelson 268-74 2,867,841 1/59 Baldauf 267-1 2,878,531 3/59 Benham 16-75 HARRISON R. MOSELEY, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1416071 *Feb 3, 1919May 16, 1922Variety Mfg CompanyClosure operator
US2032951 *Dec 14, 1931Mar 3, 1936Milton A PixleyClosure
US2311703 *May 16, 1940Feb 23, 1943Quad Mfg CompanyFlexible door and mechanism for operating the same
US2811347 *Sep 12, 1955Oct 29, 1957Thompson Prod IncVariable rate torsion spring
US2831219 *Apr 18, 1955Apr 22, 1958Nelson Corless BDoor and supporting structure therefor
US2867841 *Dec 15, 1954Jan 13, 1959Baldauf Reginald BSpring-urged hinge construction for doors, covers and the like
US2878531 *Nov 25, 1957Mar 24, 1959Sanymetal Products Co IncDoor operating torsional rod assembly
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3389739 *Feb 20, 1964Jun 25, 1968Macgregor & Company Naval ArchClosing device for hatch covers and the like
US3748687 *Feb 25, 1972Jul 31, 1973Romberg FTorsion closer device
US4738296 *Sep 15, 1986Apr 19, 1988Bernard E. HatchRolling steel door
US4807840 *Oct 18, 1985Feb 28, 1989Baker George STuned mass damping system and method
Classifications
U.S. Classification160/133, 160/321, 160/201, 160/189, 267/154
International ClassificationE05F15/16
Cooperative ClassificationE05F15/1661, E05Y2900/106
European ClassificationE05F15/16B9D