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Publication numberUS3212457 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 19, 1965
Filing dateJul 18, 1961
Priority dateJul 18, 1961
Publication numberUS 3212457 A, US 3212457A, US-A-3212457, US3212457 A, US3212457A
InventorsRobert Looker
Original AssigneeBrown Line Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Anchor means
US 3212457 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

R. LOOKER ANCHOR MEANS Oct.v 19, 1965 Filed July 18. 1961 um l J' v fifa/'flew United States Patent O 3,212,457 ANCHOR MEANS Robert Looker, Santa Monica, Calif., assignor to Brown- Line Corporation, El Segundo, Calif., a corporation of California Filed .luly 18, 1961, Ser. No. 124,853 3 Claims. (Cl. 10S-369) The present invention relates to means for securely fastening a cargo in position in a cargo carrier and more particularly to anchor means adapted to be adjustably positioned on a track to permit a cargo to be attached thereto for preventing movement of said cargo relative to said track.

Commercial cargo carriers, such as airplanes, are frequently subjected to accelerations of substantial magnitude that produces large forces on the cargo located inside of the carrier. Accordingly, in order to prevent movement f the cargo within the carrier during such conditions, it is essential that the cargo be rigidly and securely fastened in a fixed position during transit. It has been customary heretofore to provide a track which is fastened to the walls and/ or floors of the cargo compartment so that any cargo disposed therein may be attached to the track. The tracks normally employed, and particularly in airplanes, are generally of a standard design wherein a pair of side rails are separated from each other by a space which communicates with an enlarged channel behind the side rails. The side rails include rst portions of reduced width and second portions of increased width so as to vary the access into the channel. In order to secure the cargo tie-down system to the track, anchor means are provided that have one or more members that may lit through the enlarged portion of the clearance space into the channel so as to become locked in position behind the side rails.

Although the foregoing devices have been effective to anchor the load to the track, they have been ditlcult to install and/or remove. In addition, in the prior art devices the means for securing the load to the anchor has necessarily been so positioned that the load tends to exert an eccentric force upon the track. Such eccentric loading tends to produce a twisting or bending of the anchor and the track to which it is secured. This in turn tends to pull the track loose and/or break it and as a result has limited the load-carrying capacity of the track' and the anchor means.

. It is now proposed to provide anchor means for a cargo tie-down system which will overcome the foregoing difliculties. More particularly this is to be accomplished by providing anchor means adapted to be quickly secured to the track with a minimum amount of effort and which will produce forces on the track along lines that will greatly reduce or eliminate eccentric loading thereof. More particularly, it is proposed to provide an anchor having a plane surface thereon adapted to engage or ride on the surface of the track. A plurality of legs project from this surface to extend into a channel in the track whereby enlarged heads on the legs will become attached to the track. A retractable plunger is provided between the legs to engage the track and lock the body in position thereon so that the legs will be securely fastened thereto. anchor to be easily removed from or attached to the track.

In addition, it is proposed to provide an anchor means that has a gimbal ring mounted on the exterior of the body so as to be free to rotate thereon. A hanger is pivotally mounted on the ring for having the load secured thereto. The gimbal ring is preferably mounted on the body member immediately adjacent the track. As a result, since the hanger and the ring are free to move the load will tend to move the gimbal ring and hanger into proper alignment with each other and the track. When so Manually retracting the plunger permits the` 3,212,457 Patented Oct. 19, 1965 ICC aligned the resulting reaction force will act along a line which extends through the track so as to create very little or no eccentric loading of the anchor means to thereby eliminate any twisting of the track. This will permit a greater load to be applied to the anchor means and the track it is secured to, thereby resulting in a more eflicient use of the various portions of the cargo tiedown system.

These and other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following description, of one form of the present invention, particularly when taken in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein like reference numerals indicate like parts and wherein:

FIGURE l is a perspective view of a cargo tie-down system employing anchor means embodying the present mvention.

FIGURE 2 is an end view, on an enlarged scale, of the anchor means employed in FIGURE l disposed in an operative position on the track.

FIGURE 3 is a side view of the anchor means in position to be installed on the track.

FIGURE 4 is a cross sectional view similar to FIG- URE 3 but showing the anchor means locked in position on the track.

FIGURE 5 is a plan view of the track as seen from the plane of line 5-5 in FIGURE 3.

FIGURE 6 is a cross sectional view taken substantially along the plane of line 6 6 in FIGURE 4 and looking in the direction of the arrows thereon.

FIGURE 7 is a plan view of the anchor means taken substantially along the plane of line 7-7 in FIGURE 3.

FIGURE 8 is a bottom view of the anchor means as seen from the plane of line 8 8 in FIGURE 3 and looking in the direction of the arrows thereon.

Referring to the drawings in more detail, the present invention is embodied in anchor means 10 adapted to be employed in a so-called cargo tie-down system 12 for rigidly securing a cargo 14 in a xed position in a cargo carrier. Although the present invention may be employed in any suitable cargo tie-down system 12, in the present instance it is particularly adapted for use in a systern 12 wherein a plurality of tracks 16 are provided so that a plurality of tie-down straps 13 may be attached to anchor means 10 fastened to the track 16 for securing the cargo 14 in position. The tracks 16 which may be secured to the walls or floor 18 of the cargo carrier may be disposed substantially parallel to each other so as to eX- tend longitudinally of the cargo compartment. The tracks 16 are preferably carefully positioned to provide a large number of convenient anchor points so that any form of cargo 14 may be secured in position thereon.

Each of the tracks 16 may be of any suitable design but are preferably of a standardized design such as disclosed in Patent Number 2,743,684. More particularly, this track 16 includes a base 20 having a bottom surface thereon adapted to tit against the surface of a floor 18, onto which it is to be secured. Any suitable fastening means such as screws or bolts may be periodically spaced along the tracks 16 to securely fasten the track in position.

A pair of sides 22 may extend upwardly from the base 20 at the opposite sides thereof. A side rail 24 and 26 may be provided at the top of each of the sides 22 to form a plane surface 28 substantially parallel to the base 18. The side rails 24 and 26 project inwardly toward each other so as to form a channel 29 inside thereof. The side rails 24 and 26 are separated from each other by a substantially uniform distance so as to thereby provide an access space 30 into the channel 29.

The width of the access space 30 is substantially less than the maximum width of the channel 29. As a re-4 sult the rails 24 and 26 will project inwardly over the top of the channel 29 and form a pair of shoulders 32 and 34. A track 16 of this configuration may be formed by any suitable means such as by extruding the shape or by milling the interior out of a solid rectangular bar stock.

In ad-dition, .at periodic intervals along the track 16 enlargements 36 in the access .space 30 may be provided. These enlargements 36 which may be formed by any suitable means such as a drilling or punching operation preferably have a circular shape with a diameter that is substantially equal to the maximum width of the channel 29. As `a result at the outer edges of the enlargements 36 there will be little or no shoulder. Although the spacings between the enlargements 36 may be of any desired amount they are preferably substantially uniform and sufficiently large to leave substantial sections 38 of the access space 28 having the narrow space therebetween for forming the shoulders 32 and 34.

The anchor means 10 includes a body member 4t) consisting of a strong material such as steel. The body 48 has a substantially cylindrical exterior with a plane surface 42 on top thereof and a plane surface 44 on the bottom thereof. 'Ihe bottom surface 44 is preferably adapted to engage the plane surface 28 formed on the top of the track 16 and to be moveable therealong.

A pair of legs 46 may be provided on the body 40 so `as to project downwardly from the bottom surfa-ce and into the channel 29. In order to secure the legs 46 in position a pair of passages 50 may be drilled completely through the body 4t) .substantially parallel to the axis thereof to thereby form openings in the top and bottom :surfaces 42 and 44. The passages 50 may be symmetrically disposed on the opposite `sides `of the axis of the body 40. The spacing between the legs 46 is preferably substantially equal to the spacing between the enlargements 36 and between the sections 38. Each of the passages t) includes a threaded inner portion adjacent the top thereof and an enlarged portion adjacent the bottom thereof.

Each of the legs 46 includes a member that has a shank 52 with an enlarged head 60 on the end thereof. The shank 52 includes a threaded end 54 that is adapted to be threaded into the threaded portion of the passage "S0 to thereby secure the leg in position. The shank 52 also includes a rst enlarged portion that fits into the enlar-ged portion of the passage 50 and a second enlarged portion 56 that is separated from the center portion by a radial shoulder 58. This shoulder 58 is .adapted to be held in tight intimate engagement with the bottom surface 44 of the body 40 when the threaded portion is threaded into the upper end of the passage 50. The second enlarged portion 56 of the shank 52 will thus project from the bottom of the body. The portion 56 preferably has a diameter that is substantially equal to the width of the access space 30 so as to be free to just barely fit therein. As a result this portion 56 of each leg 46 may tit through the access space and down into the channel 28 and when the legs 46 are in the sections 38 the body 40 will not be able to move laterally of the track 16.

Each enlarged head 60 is disposed 0n the outer end of the leg on the portion 56 thereof. Each head 60 forms an upper enlarged annular surface 62 that has an outside diameter approximately equal to the width of the channel 29. The diameter of the enlarged head 60 is slightly less than the diameter of the enlargements 36 so that heads 60 and the legs 46 may pass through the enlargements 36 and into the channel 29. Since the annular surface 62 of each head 60 is approximately equal to the width of the channel 29 it Will extend laterally under the side rails 24 and 26. As a consequence each yannular surface 62 will engage the shoulders 32 and 34 .f formed by the under sides of the side rails 24 `and 26 when the legs are disposed in the sections 38. This of course will prevent the anchor means being lifted verti-cally from the track.

It may thus be seen the heads 60 of the legs 46 may be inserted through the enlargements 36 and into the channel 28 until the bottom 44 of the body 440 rests on the top 28 of the track 16. The body 40 may then be moved axially along the track 16. The legs will simultaneously travel axially along the channel 29 until both of the legs -are disposed in the sections 38. Since the enlarged heads 60 have a diameter substantially equal to the width of the channel 28, they will occupy substantially the full width thereof and the surfaces 62 will engage the shoulders 32 and 34 formed by the underside of the rails 24 and 26. Thus the 'body 40 will be incapable of being removed from the channel 28 at such locations.

It may thus be seen that the enlargement 36 is preferably equal to the spacing between the legs 46 so that both of the heads 60 may be simultaneously inserted through the enlargements 36 and into the bottom of the channel 28. In addition, the spacing between the sections 38 of the standard width is also substantially equal to the spacing between the legs 46 so that annular upper surfaces 62 on both of the heads 60 will simultaneously engage the shoulders 32 and 34 on both sides of the channel 28. Thus in the event the body 40 is to be lifted from the track 16, the ibody 40 will have to be moved axially of the track 16 until the heads 60 .can be removed through the enlargements 36.

In order to insure the body 40 being .securely fastened to the track 16 in the foregoing manner, means may be provided for locking the body 40 on the track 16 against axial movement therealong. In the present instance this comprises a plunger 70 that is mounted on the body 40 and operatively interconnected therewith.

In the present instance, the plunger 78 is reciprocably disposed in a passage 72 that extends completely through the body 40 substantially co-axial therewith `so as to be substantially symmetri-cally disposed between the legs 46. The passage 72 includes an upper cylindrical portion 71 with a reduced diameter that forms an opening in the top 42 of the body and a lower portion 73 of enlarged diameter that forms a large opening in the bottom surface 44 midway between the two legs 46. The lower enlarged portion 73 is separated from the upper portion 71 by a radial 4shoulder 74.

The plunger 70 includes a substantially cylindrical shank 76 which has a diameter substantially equal to the upper portion 71 so that the shank 76 may be slideably disposed in the passage 72. The upper end of the shank 76 may project through the opening in the top 42 of the body 40. A ring 78 or similar means may be provided on the projecting end of the shank 76 to facilitate the application of a manual force to the plunger 70 so that it may be lifted axially upwardly through the passage 72.

The lower end of the plunger 70 includes an enlarged head 80 that is separated from the shank 76 by an annular shoulder 82. The head 80 is adapted to be at least partially disposed in the enlarged portion 71 of the passage 72. A coil spring 84 may be provided in the enlarged portion substantially concentrically about the shank 76 so that the opposite ends of the spring 84 will engage the two shoulders 74 and 82 and bias the plunger 70 downward. The head 80 of the plunger 70 is disposed between the heads 68 of the legs 46 and is too large to pass therebetween. Thus the downward force of the spring 84 will tend to force the head 80 against the two heads 60 which in turn will limit the axial movement of the plunger 70.

The outside diameter of the head 80 of the plunger 70 is preferably approximately equal to the inside diameter of the enlargements 36 between the side rails 24 and 26. Thus the head 80 may t into an enlargement 36 and provide a snug mechanical t therein. As a result when the head 88 is positioned in an enlargement 36 it will be effective to prevent any lateral movement of the body 40 along the track 16. Since the plunger 70 is preferably symmetrically disposed between the two legs 46, the head 80 of the plunger 70 will be aligned with an enlargement 36 when the heads 60 of the legs 46 are disposed in the narrow sections 38.

It may thus be seen that if a sutlicient force is applied to the ring 78, the plunger 70 will be retracted upwardly until the head 80 thereof is liush with the bottom surface 44 of the body 40. The heads 60 on the two legs 46 may then be inserted through the enlargements 36 and into the bottom of the channels 28 so that the bottom surface 44 of the body 40 will rest on the top surface 18 of the track 16. The body 40 may then be moved laterally along the track 16 until the heads 60 of the legs 46 are disposed below the shoulders 32 and 34. When so positioned, the head 80 of the plunger 70 will be aligned with an enlargement 36. Accordingly, if the upward face on the plunger 70 is then released the head 80 of the plunger 70 will be free to move into its extended position and move into an enlargement 36. The plunger 70 will thus lock the body 40 in position on the track 16 and prevent axial movement thereof. This in turn will insure the heads 60 of the legs 46 being retained in engagement with the underside of the shoulders 32 and 34 formed by the side rails 24 and 26. This in turn will prevent the body 40 being lifted from the track 16.

In the event a lifting force is again applied to the ring 78, the plunger 70 will again be retracted and the head 80 thereof positioned substantially ush with the bottom surface 44. Since the head 80 is removed from the enlargement 36 the body 40 may be moved axially along the track 16 until the heads 60 are in line with enlargements 36. This will permit the body 40 to be lifted vertically from the track 16 so as to be free therefrom.

It may thus be seen that when the legs 46 are disposed in the sections 38 and the plunger 70 is in an enlargement 36 the body 40 will be rmly secured to the track so as to form an anchor to which the cargo 14 may be attached.

Accordingly suitable fastening means may be provided to facilitate securing the end of a tie-down strap 13 thereto. In the present instance this fastening means for the end of a tie-down strap 13 comprises a gimbal ring assembly that is disposed on the cylindrical exterior of the body 40. This assembly includes an annular collar 92 that has a cylindrical surface on the interior thereof. This bearing surface forms a snug fit on the exterior of the body 40 so that it will be free to slide therearound. The upper end of the body member 40 may include an annular flange 94 that extends radially outwardly around the top of the cylindrical exterior surface. This flange 94 is adapted to engage the top of the collar so as to limit the axial movement thereof. As a result the collar 92 will be prevented from sliding olf the end of the body 40. In addition it will be possible for the collar 92 to exert very large vertical forces on the bottom of the flange 94 that will tend to lift the body 40 from the track 16.

A ring 96 may be secured to the bottom of the body 40 to project radially outwardly around the bottom of the exterior surface. This ring 96 will thus form a second shoulder that will limit the collar 92 coming off the other end of the body 40. The collar 92 will thus be trapped between the flange 94 and the ring 96 but it will be free to rotate therearound. The ring 96 is preferably very thin and the bottom thereof is adjacent the upper surface 28 of the track 16. Thus the collar 92 will be as close as possible to the top of the track 16. As a consequence the collar 92 will be disposed very close to the points at which the heads 60 on the legs 46 engage the shoulders 32 and 34 formed by the bottoms of the side rails 24 and 26.

The fastening means for the end of a tie-down strap 13 also includes a hanger 98 that is attached to the collar 92. The hanger 98 comprises a C shaped member that has a load-bearing portion 99 and a pair of arms 100 that project from the opposite ends thereof. The ends of the arms 100 include cylindrical portions that are adapted to t into openings in the sides of the ring collar 92. Thus the hanger 9S will be free to pivot on the collar 92. The

load bearing portion 99 is adapted to have a hook or other fastening means on the end of the tie-down str-ap 13 attached thereto.

It may thus be seen that since the collar 92 is free to rotate about the axis of the body 40 and since the hanger 98 is free to pivot relative to the plane of the collar 92, any load that the strap 13 applies thereto will cause the collar 92 and hanger 98 thereon to properly align themselves. The load will thus be effective to act along a single line of force which will pass very close to the point at which the heads 60 engage the shoulders 32 and 34. This will result in little or no torque being applied to the anchor means or the track tending to twist the track loose from its fastenings.

It may thus be seen from the foregoing description and drawings that anchor means have been provided which among other things are not only simple to use but are also reliable in operation and provide an improved loading of the track to which it is secured. Although but one embodiment of the invention is illustrated, it will be readily apparent to persons skilled in the art that numerous modications and changes may be made thereto without departing from the spirit of the invention. AC- cordingly the present invention is not to be limited by the foregoing description or drawings but only by the claims.

What is claimed is:

1. An anchor adapted to be mounted on a track having a pair of side rails separated from each other by a space which includes rst periodically occurring portions of reduced but substantially uniform width and second periodically occurring portions of increased width, said rst and second portions being alternately spaced along said track at substantially uniform increments, said anchor comprising a body member having a cylindrical exterior with a substantially plane surface on one end thereof adapted to engage said side rails, a pair of legs projecting from said surface and adapted to it between said side rails, said legs being separated from each other by the distance between said corresponding portions, each of said legs having an enlargement on the end thereof that is small enough to pass through said second portions and too large to pass through said first portions, a plunger member retractably axially mounted on said body member symmetrically between said legs and being adapted to t into said second portions when said legs are in said first portions to thereby prevent said body member moving axially along said track, and a load bearing member m'oV- ably disposed on said cylindrical exterior of the body member for moving therearound and including means adapted for having a load secured thereto.

2. An anchor adapted to be mounted on a track having a pair of side rails separated from each other by a space which includes first periodically occurring portions of reduced but substantially uniform width and second periodically occurring portions of increased width, said first and second portions being alternately spaced along said track at substantially uniform increments, said anchor comprising a body member having a cylindrical exterior with a substantially plane surface on one end thereof adapted to engage said side rails, a pair of legs projecting from said surface to fit between said side rails, said legs being separated from each other by the distance between corresponding ones of said portions, each of said legs having an enlargement on the end thereof that is small enough to pass through said second portions and too large to pass through said first portions, a plunger member retractably and axially mounted on said body member symmetrically between said legs and being adapted to it into said second portions when said legs are in said first portions to thereby prevent said body member from moving axially along said track, a cylindrical bearing member concentrically disposed on said cylindrical exterior of the body member for sliding movement therearound, and a A hanger member pivotally attached to said bearing member for moving relative thereto, said hanger member being adapted to have fa load secured thereto.

3. An anchor adapted to be mounted on a track having a pair of side rails separated from each other by a space which includes first periodically occurring portions of reduced width and second periodicallyYYY occurring portions of increased width, said tirst and second portions being alternately spaced along said track at substanti-ally uniform increments, said anchor comprising a body member having a cylindrical exterior with a substantially plane surface on the end thereof adapted to engage said side rails, a pair of legs rigidly secured to the body member and projecting from said surface to fit between said side rails, said legs being separated from each other by the distance between corresponding ones of said portions, each of said legs having an enlargement on the end thereof that is small enough to pass through said second portions and too large to pass through said first portions, a plunger member retractably and axially mounted on said body member symmetrically between said legs, one end of said plunger member projecting from said surface to t into one of said second portions when said legs are in said first portions to thereby prevent said body member moving axially along said track, the opposite end of said plunger projecting from an opposite side of the base member and including means for retracting the iirst end of the plunger from the second portion, a cylindrical bearing member concentrically disposed on said exterior surface for sliding circumferentially around said body member, said bearing member being disposed adja-cent and parallel said plane end surface and said side rails and between the opposite ends of the plunger, and a hanger pivotally secured to said bearing member at diametrieally lopposite sides thereof and adjacent said side rails, said hanger being adapted to have a load secured thereto so that any resulting force will cause said hanger and bearing member to move so as to align themselves and produce a reaction force that passes through the plane surface and the side rails adjacent the center of the plunger.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,469,659 5/49 Martin 244-15 2,688,504 9/54 Parker 10S-369 2,743,684 5/56 Elsner 10S-369 MILTON BUCHLER, Primary Examiner.

LEO QUACKENBUSH, Examiner.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification410/105, 244/115
International ClassificationB64D9/00, B60P7/06, B60P7/08, B61D45/00
Cooperative ClassificationB60P7/0815, B64D9/003, B61D45/001
European ClassificationB61D45/00B, B64D9/00A, B60P7/08A3
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Jul 11, 1988ASAssignment
Owner name: AAR CORP., 2100 TOUHY AVENUE, OAK GROVE VILLAGE, I
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:BROOKS & PERKINS, INCORPORATED;REEL/FRAME:004918/0345
Effective date: 19810812