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Publication numberUS3257878 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 28, 1966
Filing dateJun 3, 1964
Priority dateJun 3, 1964
Publication numberUS 3257878 A, US 3257878A, US-A-3257878, US3257878 A, US3257878A
InventorsAndersen Alfred F
Original AssigneeAndersen Alfred F
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Adjustable ratcheting wrench having rack means for immobilizing the jaws
US 3257878 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 28, 1966 A. F. ANDERSEN 3,257,373

ADJUSTABLE RATCHETING WRENCH HAVING RACK MEANS FOR IMMOBILIZING THE JAWS 2 Sheets-Sheet '1 Filed June 5. 1964 June 28, 1966 A. F. ANDERSEN 3,257,878

ADJUSTABLE RATCHETING WRENCH HAVING RACK MEANS FOR IMMOBILIZING THE JAWS Filed June 5, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 United States Patent 3,257,878 ADJUSTABLE RATCHETING WRENCH HAVING RACK MEANS FUR IMMOBILIZING THE JAWS Alfred F. Andersen, Box 181, Rural Route,

Glen Mills, Pa. Filed June 3, 1964, Ser. No. 372,277

6 Claims. (Cl. 81318) The present invention relates to adjustable wrenches.

A purpose of the invention is to provide a quickly adjustable wrench of either the box wrench or the open wrench type which has a ratchet type adjustment that positively clamps in adjusted position.

A further purpose is to permit ready adjustment of the exact position which a movable wrench jaw will assume when clamped, while at the same time facilitating extremely rapid and positive adjustment.

A further purpose in a wrench having a fixed jaw provided with nut engaging means and with handle means, is 'to provide a cooperating movable jaw which has nut engaging means movable with respect to the fixed jaw to move the nut engaging means of the movable jaw toward or away from the nut engaging means on the fixed jaw along a general line of motion, to provide guide means cooperating between the movable jaw and the fixed jaw to guide the movable jaw along this line of motion, to provide serration means cooperating between the fixed and movable jaws along the line of motion, and to provide clamp means which includes handle means for engaging .the serration means of the fixed jaw against the serration means of the movable jaw in one adjusted position, the clamp means being pivotally interconnected to ,the fixed aw.

A further purpose is to pivotally interconnect the clamp means to the fixed jaw by providing a slot in the fixed jaw, and a pivot pin through the movable jaw and the clamp handle means.

A further purpose is to clamp the serrations together by clamp means comprising a cam engaging a cam fol-lower abutment.

- A further purpose is to adjust the jaws transversely to the lengths of the handle means.

A further purpose is to adjust the jaws longitudinally of the handle means.

A further purpose is to spring urge the movable jaw toward closed position and desirably also spring urge the clamping handle means toward opening of the clamp means. i

A further purpose is to provide the spring acting between the two handle means in an integral interconnection between the two handle means.

A further purpose is to permit tightening up of the jaws after they have engaged the nut. I

A further punpose is to provide cam means for positively urging the serrations apart. 1

Further punposes appear in the specification and in the claims.

In the drawings I have chosen to illustrate a ifBW only of the numerous embodiments in which the invention may appear, selecting the forms shown from the standpoints of convenience in illustration, satisfactory operation and clear demonstration of the principles involved.

FIGURE 1 is a front elevation of a preferred embodiment of the adjustable wrench of the invention in closed position, applied to an open wrench.

FIGURE 2 is a side elevation of the wrench of FIG- URE 1.

FIGURE 3 is a fragmentary front elevation of the wrench shown in FIGURE 1 in open position.

FIGURE 4 is a fragmentary rear elevation of the wrench of FIGURE 1 in open position.

Patented June 28, 1966 FIGURE 5 is a fragmentary front elevation of the fixed jaw of the wrench of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 6 is a fragmentary side elevation of the fixed jaw of the wrench .of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 7 is a rear elevation of the movable jaw of the wrench of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 8 is a side elevation of the movable jaw of the wrench of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 9 is a fragmentary front elevation of a modified wrench similar to that shown in FIGURE 1 showing adjustment of the serration means on the fixed jaw.

FIGURE 9a is an enlarged fragmentary elevation of FIGURE 9 in the direction of the line 9a9a.

FIGURE 10 is a fragmentary front elevation of a further embodiment of the device of the invention, applied to a box wrench, and shown in closed position.

FIGURE 11 is a view similar to FIGURE 10 showing the wrench of FIGURE 10 in open position.

FIGURE 12 is a fragmentary side elevation of the wrench of FIGURE 11.

FIGURE 13 is a section of FIGURE 11 on the line 1313 to enlarged scale.

FIGURE 14 is a fragmentary perspective of the movable jaw of the wrench of FIGURES 10 to 13.

FIGURE 15 is -a fragmentary rear elevation of a somewhat modified form of wrench, the position corresponding to that Otf FIGURE 4.

FIGURE 16 is a fragmentary end view of the fixed jaw of the Wrench of FIGURE 15'.

FIGURE 17 is a fragmentary view similar to FIGURE 10 of a modified form of wrench.

Describing in illustration but not inlimitation and referring to the drawings:

There are various types of adjustable wrenches available which permit placing the movable jaws in any of a variety of adjusted positions. cise positioning of the jaws theyoften are slow acting. Where such wrenches act rapidly, in many cases they depend on frictionable engagement and do not permit positive positioning of the movable jaw.

The present invention is concerned with the production of an open wrench or a box wrench in which the jaws can be quickly adjustable but are positively positioned. It offers the advantage of great strength, low maintenance and low cost of production. A minimum of machining is required and many of the surfaces can be rough surfaces as cast or as forged.

In the Wrench of the invention there is a fixed jaw which I has nut engaging means and also has handle means provided thereon. These are ordinarily disposed at opposite ends of the fixed jaw.

The fixed jaw cooperates with a movable jaw which has nut engaging means and is movable with respect to the fixed jaw so that the nut engaging means of the movable jaw moves toward and away from the nut engaging means of .the fixed jaw along a general line of motion. By this it is meant that the two follow a general path in a straight line, but are free to deviate laterally for the purpose of clamping as later explained.

There are suitable tracks or guiding means on the fixed jaw and the movable jaw which cooperate to-assure that.

the movable jaw will remain generally along said line of motion as it adjusts.

Both the fixed jaw and the movable jaw have serration means which are capable of engagement with one another and which extend generally along the line of motion of the movable jaw. In order to avoid confusion it should be made evident that the serration means can have knurling,

ratcheting or thread cutting, or it can simply be roughness of the surfaces which will enable them to interengage or 1 Where these wrenches permit prewhich of course cooperates with the handle on the fixed jaw. The clamp is capable of bringing the serration means on the movable jaw and the serration means on the fixed jaw into engagement with one another so as to hold the movable jaw in a particular adjusted position.

In order that the handle means an operate, there is apivotal connection provided between them. This may be an actual pivot pin working for example in a slot, or it may be an effective pivot means due to a high degree of resiliency of a U-shaped member at the bend of the U.

Considering now the form of FIGURES 1 to 8 inclusive, I there illustrate a wrench having a fixed jaw 25 which may be of any suitable material, conveniently steel, which includes a nut engaging means or surface 26 suitably at one end and a suitably integrally connected handle 27 at the other end.

intervening between the handle and the nut engaging means the fixed jaw 25 has a guiding surface 28 extending generally transverse to the length of the handle 27 and adapted to cooperate with the guiding surface on a movable jaw to be described. Disposed generally in parallel relation to the guiding surface 28 and generally transverse to the length of the handle 27 is a serrated surface or serration means 30 which in the preferred embodiment consists of numerous fine ratchet teeth permitting adjustment of the movable jaw as later explained, but which in a particuar embodiment may simply be a rough surface where precision and adjustment are not important.

Also genera-11y parallel to the serration means and directed toward the handle end of the fixed jaw is a clamping abutment or cam follower abutment 31 which is adapted to engage a clamping cam as later explained.

Interposed between the serration means 30 and the clamping abutment 31 and extending generally parallel thereto is a spring recess 32 which is desirably semi-cylindrical in cross section and which has a semi-circular spring abutment 33 located as best seen in FIGURE with a bottom of the spring recess facing toward the side on which the nut engaging means in located.

Located on the handle side of the clamping abutment 31 and extending generally transverse with respect to the' length of the handle in the first jaw is a pivot slot 34 as later explained.

A movable jaw 35 cooperates with the fixed jaw 25.

It has, opposite to the corresponding portion of the fixed jaw, a nut engaging surface or means 36. When the movable jaw is retracted as shown in FIGURE 1, a stop abutment 37 on the fixed jaw engages a stop abutment 38 on the movable jaw and prevents the jaws from coming closer together, thus determining the limiting closed position of the wrench.

The movable jaw has generally transverse to the length of the handle a guiding surface or means 40, directed toward the nut engaging end of the wrench which slides along the corresponding guiding means 28 on the fixed jaw and thus predetermines the general lateral line of motion of the movable jaw as best seen in FIGURE 3.

The movable jaw has parallel to the general line of motion, and designed to cooperate with the serration means on the fixed jaw, serrationtmeans 41 directed away from the nut engaging end of the wrench, and which is desirably composed of ratchet teeth or the like of the same contour as the serration means on the fixed jaw, but where desired may simply be a rough surface if precision is not required.

Parallel also to the general line of motion and cooperating with the spring recess in the fixed jaw is a spring recess 42 on the movable jaw, suitably a semi-cylindrical recess ending in a semi-circular spring abutment 43 facing in the direction toward the nut engaging surface on the movable jaw as best seen in FIGURE 7. These recesses together desirably form a cylindrical recess in which a helical compression spring can be contained and restrained as later explained.

The movable jaw is desirably thinned at 44 by providing a transversely extending tapered portion 45 to an extension on the movable jaw and the tapered portion 45 rides along a corresponding transversely extending tapered surface 47 on the fixed jaw so as to confine the movable jaws more effectively in the line of motion above referred to.

There is, however, sufficierit freedom so that the movable jaw can move so as to lock against the serration means on the fixed jaw or adjust with respect to it as required.

The movable jaw has at a convenient position on its extension opposite the slot 34 a pivot opening 48 as will be described.

The clamping function is performed by a clamp means 50 which has a handle means 51 in position to oppose the handle means 27 much after the manner of the two handles on a pair of pliers.

At the opposite end from the handle means 51 there is a cam surface 52 which engages the cam abutment 31 on the fixed jaw as previously described. The cam means has a pivot opening at 53 cooperating with the pivot opening 48 on the movable jaw. A pivot pin 54 extends through the pivot opening 48 on the movable jaw, the pivot slot 34 on the fixed jaw and the pivot opening 53 on the cam means, and has suitable heads 55 at both ends to hold the wrench together. The pivot pin 54 must have enough freedom in the slot 34 so that it will provide for the lateral motion required in adjustment and clamping and unclamping.

In the spring recesses 32 and 42, acting between the opposite spring abutments 33 on the fixed jaw and 43 on the movable jaw, is placed a helical compression spring 56 which tends to move the nut engaging means on the movable jaw toward the nut engaging means on the fixed jaw as best seen in FIGURE 1.

To bias the handle 51 on the clamping means to the position for unclamping, the handle 51 is provided with a spring aligning pin 57 shown in FIGURE 1 and the handle 27 has a cooperating spring aligning pin 58 and acting between these handles held at the ends by these pins is a helical compression spring 60.

All of the parts of the wrench including the springs will desirably be of a suitable steel, although suitably nonferrous metals such as bronze may be employed for special purposes if desired.

In operation, it will be evident that when the wrench is inactive the clamping means 50 is urged by the spring 60 acting against the handle 51 to reach unclamping position where the cam on the clamping means does not lock against the clamping abutment 31. The helical compression spring 56 then urges the jaws into the retracting position in which the limiting abutments 37 and 38 engage. The jaws are free to move to this position because the guide means 40 on the movable jaw rides on the guide means 28 on the fixed jaw and the serration means 30 on the fixed jaw and 41 on the movable jaw are not urged into interlocking position. The jaws also guide on the tapered surfaces 45 and 47.

When the wrench is to engage a nut, the movable jaw is displaced from the fixed jaw usually by engaging the end of its nut engaging face on one side of the nut and pushing the entire wrench into the position to open the movable jaw and engage opposite faces of the nut. As the movable jaw moves to this position as shown in FIG- URE 3, the guiding surface on the movable jaw at 40 engages the guiding surface 28 on the fixed jaw, and the guiding surfaces 45 and 47 engage. The helical compression spring 56 tends to urge the nut engaging face 36 of the movable jaw and 26 of the fixed jaw against the opposite sides of the nut and the wrench is then in position to be locked. Locking is accomplished by the operator by pulling handle 51 toward handle 27 against the action of helical compression spring 60. This tightens the clamping face of the cam 5'2 against the locking abutment 31 on the fixed jaw and since the cam is pivoted on hinge 48 on which the movable jaw is also pivoted, there is a tendency to pull the movable jaw and the fixed jaw into engagement of the serration means 41 on the movable jaw with the serration means 30 on the fixed jaw, locking the jaws as best seen in FIGURE 4. The guiding surfaces 28, 40 and 45, 47 permit enough freedom for this motion.

All of this can be accomplished by the user using one hand and manipulating the tool at the handle end rather like a pair of pliers.

In some cases where the nuts are precisely dimensioned it is desirable to be able to accurately adjust to a particular nut size. This requires that there be a proper placement of the teeth on the serration means 30 and 41. With this idea in view, a modified form of the device shown in FIGURE 9 provides a screw 61 which is axially pivoted at 62 in a hole running in the direction of adjustment and which extends out beyond the hole-at the side toward the nut to expose the threads. At the outer end the screw is reduced at 63 so that it cannot fall out, and is partially surrounded by the walls of the opening in which it rests, as shown in FIGURE 9a. The screw can simply be turned against the friction of the opening to adjust the thread position and act as a serration means to engage the corresponding serration means on the movable jaw. The length of the spring 56 is suitably adjusted so that it will not interfere with the screw.

In some cases the invention is applied to a box wrench as shown in FIGURES 10 to 14. In this form thefixed jaw 25 has a nut engaging face 26 at the outer end and a handle 27' as shown.

The fixed jaw has, extending generally longitudinally of the handle, serration means 30' along a portion of the fixed jaw between the handle and the other end. The guiding means in this case are somewhat more elaborate than in the other wrench form. In this case the handle is longitudinally slotted at 64 to provide one guiding means for the movable jaw.

The movable jaw 35 has nut engaging surfaces 36' and 36 at angles to one another as proper in a box wrench. At its lower end it has a wing extension 66 which cooperates with the guiding slot 64 in the fixed jaw. Additional guiding is obtained in this design by bending the wrench near the operating end in a U at 67, and making a clamping means 50' integral by connecting to clamping handle 51', having an elongated longitudinal slot 68 opposite to the elongated slot 64 and this engages an opposite guiding wing extension 70 on the movable jaw.

The movable jaw has serration means 41 extending parallel to its direction of motion and this is capable of being brought into engagement with the serration means 1 32 provided by a suitable lug 71 on the fixed jaw which is cleared against interference in locking position by providing a notch 72in the clamping means 50.

In operation of the device of FIGURES 10 to 14 inclusive, when the handles are not pressed together, the spring of the metal at the U at 67 causes them to separate, relieving against clamping of the serrated surfaces and helical compression spring 56 forces the movable jaw to closed position as limited by motion of the wing extensions 66 and 70 in the slots 64 and 68.

To open the wrench the nut engaging portion of the movable jaw is engaged on the nut and pushed away from the nut engaging portion of the fixed jaw to achieve a position as shown in FIGURE 11. Then the handles are pressed together and the clamping cam portion 52' on the clamping means 50' pushes the clamping abutment'31' on the movable jaw to engage the serration means as shown 6 in FIGURE 10, thus locking the wrench. When the handles are released, however, the wrench will automatically be restored to its inactive position.

In FIGURES 15 and 16 I show a wrench of the invention somewhat modified in respect to the clamping cam and also the fixed jaw. In this case the cam 50 has an extension 50 in the direction remote from the fixed jaw 36 which engages a cam projection 73 from the fixed jaw so that by pressing the clamping handle 51 in the opposite direction to the direction for clamping, the cam portion 50 acts on the cam projection 73 to positively force the serrations 30 and 41 apart, instead of relying on this action by the spring as in the forms previously described. Thus, the motion of the clamping lever 51 in the one direction causes the serrations to engage and grip, and motion in the opposite direction pulls them apart.

The form of FIGURE 17 is a modification of the wrench shown in FIGURES 10 to 14. In this case the movable jaw 36 has an extension 74 between the handles 27' and 51'. A pivotal connection or dolls head 75 is made in the lower end of the extension 74 to an external threaded screw 76 which has threads adapted to engage serrations 30. Opposite serrations 77 can optionally be provided on the clamping lever 51'. The screw 76 has a suitably integral axial stem 78 which extends through and is guided by the walls of an opening 80 in a lug 81 extending from the handle 27. Between the lug 81 and the screw 76, the stem 78 is surrounded by a helical compression spring 82 which tends to retract the movable jaw 36 when the handles of the wrench are separated.

The device functions essentially as the wrench of FIGURES 10 to 14 until the jaws close about the nut. Then the operator can at his option tighten the movable jaw 36 against the fixed jaw by turning a knob 83 on the end of the stem 78 so as to make the threads 76 tighten the movable jaw against the serrations 30' and the serrations 76, if any are used.

The movable jaw can be loosened by reverse turning of the knob 83. When the wrench is inactive the operator can open the movable jaw by pulling on the'knob 83 rather than by pushing the movable jaw against the nut if he prefers.

In view of my invention and disclosure, variations and modifications to meet individual whim or particular need will doubtless become evident to others skilled in the art to obtain all or part of the benefits of my invention without copying the structure shown, and I, therefore, claim all such insofar as they fall within the reasonable spirit and scope of my claims.

Having thus described my invention what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:

1. In an adjustable wrench comprising a first and second handle pivotably interconnected, a jaw member fixed to the first handle, a sliding jaw member slidably mounted for guided movement on the fixed jaw member for movement toward and away from the fixed jaw, serration means cooperating between the slidable jaw and the fixed jaw extending along the line of motion of the sliding jaw, pivot means pivotably interconnecting the sliding jaw to the second handle, said pivot means moving within a slot in the fixed jaw as the sliding jaw is adjusted and locking means acting in opposition as the handles are squeezed together to engage the serration means together to hold the sliding jaw in an adjusted position.

2. In an adjustable wrench according to claim 1, wherein the locking means comprises a spiral cam surface on the second handle rotated toward the direction of increasing radius as the handles are squeezed together against an abutment on the fixed jaw thereby urging said.

jaw in opposition to the pivot means of the sliding jaw acting within the slot of the fixed jaw.

3. In an adjustable wrench according to claim l, in

7 combination with a first spring means resiliently urging the jaw members toward each other.

4. In an adjustable wrench according to claim 3, in combination with a second spring means between said first and second handles urging them apart.

5. An adjustable wrench according to claim 1, wherein vsaid serration means is adjustable and comprises a screw rotatably mounted in one jaw and operatively engaged with serrations on the other jaw for accurately adjusting the relative distances between the jaws.

6. In an adjustable wrench according to claim 2, including a counter cam abutment on the fixed jaw engaged by a counter cam on the second handle to urge the serrations apart as the handles are spread apart.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS Keith 8l384 X' Von Cawenburgh.

Reed 81-146 X Smiley 81- 391 X Gell 81391 X Brown 81391 X Gearhart 81391 X Gross 81391 X Healy 8l165 X Orr 81-126 X 5 WILLIAM FELDMAN, Primary Examiner.

MILTON S. MEHR, Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US567945 *Oct 14, 1895Sep 15, 1896 Lock-jaw wrench
US729544 *Sep 29, 1902Jun 2, 1903Frank Von CawenburghWrench.
US903002 *Jul 7, 1908Nov 3, 1908Jacob S StaufferWrench.
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US1341712 *Jun 28, 1919Jun 1, 1920James GellWrench
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US2407547 *Sep 16, 1943Sep 10, 1946Byram L MccrearyWrench
US2452849 *Oct 5, 1945Nov 2, 1948Gross Oswald MWrench with spring closed jaws and handle and pawl feed
US2769359 *Jan 20, 1955Nov 6, 1956Healy James WToggle wrench
US3000245 *Sep 2, 1959Sep 19, 1961J E BuntinPivoted head, slidable side jaw wrench having ratchet-type actuating means
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5005450 *Mar 21, 1990Apr 9, 1991Vernon FordSelf-locking tool
US5033338 *Oct 4, 1990Jul 23, 1991Ford Jr Vernon J GSelf-locking device
US6014917 *Jul 1, 1998Jan 18, 2000B!G Ventures, L.L.C.Self-adjusting and/or self-locking pliers
US6145415 *Feb 12, 1999Nov 14, 2000Liu; Kuo-ChenAdjustable pliers
US6178855Oct 22, 1999Jan 30, 2001B!G Ventures, L.L.C.Self-adjusting and/or self-locking pliers
US6378404Jan 20, 1999Apr 30, 2002Big Ventures, L.L.C.Self-adjusting and/or self-locking pliers
US6662690Jun 20, 2002Dec 16, 2003Lisle CorporationPliers for clamping a hose or tube
Classifications
U.S. Classification81/318, 81/391, 81/141, D08/22, 81/147, 81/143
International ClassificationB25B13/00, B25B13/46
Cooperative ClassificationB25B13/46
European ClassificationB25B13/46