US 3288082 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Nov. 29, 1966Y D. w. BRosNAN 3,288,082
RAIL HANDLING APPARATUS Filed Feb. 1o, 1965 Y 'r sheets sheet 1 ATTORNEYSv Nov. 29, 1966 D. w. BRosNAN RAIL HANDLING APPARATUS '7 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Feb. l0, 1965 INV ENTOR ATTORNEYS Nov. 29, 1966 D. w. BRosNAN 3,288,082
RAIL HANDLING APPARATUS Filed Feb. 10, 1965 '7 Sher-:its-Sheefl .'5
ATTORNEYS INVEN TOR Nov. 29, 1966 D, w, BROSNAN 3,288,082
RAIL HANDLING APPARATUS Filed Feb. 1o, 1965 '7 sheets-sheet 4 '7 Sheets-Sheefl 5 Filed Feb. 10, 1965 INV ENTOR ATTORS NOV- 29, 1965- D. w. BRosNAN RAIL HANDLING APPARATUS Filed Feb. lO, 1965 7 Sheets-Sheet 6 INV ENTOR ATTORNEYS Nov. 29, 1966 Di W. BROSNAN 3,288,082
RAIL HANDLING APPRATUS Filed Feb. l0, 1965 '7 Sheets-Sheet 7 INV ENTOR ATTORNEYS United States Patent O 3,288,032 RAIL HANDLING APPARATUS Dennis William Brosnan, Box 1808, Washington, D.C. Filed Feb. 10, 1965, Ser. No. 431,644 18 Claims. (Cl. 104-2) This is a continuation-in-part of application Serial No. 305,725, tiled on August 30, 1963.
The present invention relates to apparatus employed in a rail laying and retrieval process wherein the rails being handled are in the form of continuous ribbons or strands. More particularly, the invention is directed to an arrangement for moving continuous ribbons of rail between a rail storage area and the ties of a track structure.
In the copending application Serial No. 305,725, there is disclosed a rail renewal process for Ireplacing the lrails of a standard gauge track on existing ties of a track structure with continuous ribbon rails. Each ribbon of rail comprises a plurality of individual -rail sections of conventional length connected end to end by suitable means, such as welding, to form the extended strand or ribbon o f rail.
Rail laying and renewing operations in which continuous ribbon rails are employed afford tremendous advantages over conventional arrangements by facilitating the completion of the operations over extremely long distances in a relatively short period of time. However, special considerations must be given to the apparatus for transporting, storing, laying and retrieving the continuous ribbons of rail used during this process.
It is a principal object of the invention to provide an integrated arrangement of apparatus for handling continuous ribbons of rail during rail laying, renewal and retrieving operations.
A further object of the invention is to provide storage area and transporting means for a number of continuous ribbons of rail.
Ancillary to the immediately preceding object, it is an additional object of the invention to provide a drive arrangement for selectively drawing from the storage area and inserting therein the ribbons or strands of rail.
Another object of the invention is to provide drive means having independently operating assemblies for simultaneously handling more than one rail ribbon.
A further object of the invention is to provide guide means for positioning track being laid to approximately the desired gauge.
Further objects and the entire scope of the invention will become more Ifully apparent when considered in light of the following detailed description of an illustrative embodiment of the invention and from the appended claims.
The illustrative embodiment may be best understood by reference to the accompanying drawings wherein:
FIGURE l constitutes a flow diagram in perspective illustrating the operational relationship -of the several elements of the rail handling apparatus;
FIGURE 2 is a view in perspective of one portion of the rail storin-g and transporting arrangement, this portion being designated as la rack car;
FIGURE 3 is a view in perspective `of another portion of the rail storing and transporting arrangement, this portion being designated as a tunnel ca r;
FIGURE 4 is a View in perspective of still another portion of the rail storing and transporting arrangement, this portion being designated as a tie down car;
FIGURE 5 is a view in perspective of one type of tie down block used in conjunction with the tie down car;
FIGURE 6 is an end view illustrating the use of the tie down car of FIGURE 5, the rail being shown in dash lines for convenience of illustration;
FIGURE 7 is a view in perspective of another type of tie down block use-d with the tie down car;
FIGURE 8 is a view in perspective of rail guide and support means, in the form of one type of roller car, intermediate the rail storage area and the principal rail drive means;
FIGURE 9 is a view in perspective of a rail pusher car housing the principal rail drive means and an auxiliary drive for moving the rail between the drive means and the storage area; and
FIGURE l0 is a view in perspective of additional rail guide and support means, in the form of a second type of roller car, intermediate the rail pusher car and area where the track is being laid or from which it is being retrieved.
Briefly, the invention includes an arrangement of apparatus mounted on at bed railroad cars, which arrangement comprises an integral accumulation of elements for performing the desired functions of moving a ribbon or strand of rail from a storage area to the track structure and for retrieving rail from the track structure and inserting it into the storage area. The storage area comprises a plurality of cars having divided framework thereon within which the rail ribbons are stored. A sepa-rate rail pusher car is provided with a main drive means for moving the rail lengths, the drive means comprising cooperating pairs of endless tread assemblies which may be driven in forward and reverse directions. The car supporting -this main drive means also carries power Winches which are employed to thread the rail between the appropriate pair of tread assemblies and the storage area. When it is desired to move a rail ribbon from the flat bed storage area, a winch is connected via a cable to the selected rail to draw this rail over suitable support and roller means to one 'of the pair of endless tread assemblies. These treads then move the selected rail rearwardly to pass over -additional roller means supported on a tiat bed located to the rear of the car supporting the drive means. A guide plate arrangement is operatively related to the additional roller means to permit the selected ribbon of rail to be directed to its approximate gauge position on the track structure. When it is desired to retrieve a ribbon of rail previously laid, the auxiliary drive means, or winch, is connected by a cable to the end of the ribbon to draw the -rail through the guide means and over the rollers into position for engagement of one of the pairs of endless tread assemblies. The selected drive assembly is then operated in a direction opposite to that previously described. The tread assembly exerts suicient force to move the rail in a forward direction over suitable roller means to a selected position in the rail storage area.
Now that the invention has been summarized, the details thereof will be set forth. Referring to FIGURE 1 of the drawings, a perspective View of the entire arrangement is shown. This arrangement includes a train which is propelled by a standard source such as locomotive 10. The locomotive draws a number of interconnected cars which will now be described. Immediately following the locomotive is a rail storage area, generally indicated at 12, which includes a plurality of ilat bed cars 14 which are appropriately coupled. The requirement for a plurality of cars 14 will become apparent as the length of each rail ribbon is defined. Each ribbon of rail comprises .a plurality of rail sections which are joined in end-to-end relationship by suitable ymeans such as welding. A conventional section of rail is 36 feet long. In the illustrative embodiment, forty of these sections are joined to form a continuous ribbon 144() feet in length.
Except for the tie down car which is centrally located with respect to the storage area 12, each of the cars 14 includes at its forward portion a vertically extending frame 16 Which is partitioned into separate sections, corresponding sections of each frame serving to house a single strand or ribbon of rail. Each frame 16 is partitioned into 54 sections to thereby permit 54 rail ribbons to be stored in the storage area 12 in an arrangement of six levels of nine rails each. On both the forwardmost and rearmost cars 14 of the storage area 12 there is provided, in addition to the frame element 16, a pair of vvertically adjustable rollers mounted on separate vertical frames. The roller arrangements are indicated generally at 18. The tie down car is also provided With a vertically extending frame structure 19 which will be described in detail hereinafter in relation to the arrangement for securing the central portions of rail ribbons to the tie down car.
Another flat bed railroad car 20 is mounted rearwardly of the last car in the storage area and is coupled thereto. Car 20 is provided With rollers 22 of adjustable height. An additional flat bed railroad car 24 is coupled to the rear of car 20. Car 24 supports the main drive means, generally indicated at 26, comprising two pairs of endless tread assemblies which are arranged in side-by-side relationship on the lat bed. Also supported on the at bed 24 is an `auxiliary drive means comprising a pair of Winches 28. The last element of the rail handling arrangement includes a final at bed car 30 on which a pair of vertically adjustable rollers 32 and guide means, indicated generally at 34, are mounted. When it is desired to remove a ribbon of rail from the storage area 12, a cable associated With one of the Winches 28 is connected to the rearmost end of the selected strand. Rollers 18 of the rearmost car 14 and rollers 22 on car 2() are appropriately adjusted to provide a support path for the selected rail to one of the endless tread assemblies 26, The rail is released from its secured position on the tie down car following Which the Winch 28 is energized to draw the selected ribbon over rollers 18 and 22 `and to thread the end of the rail into engagement With the endless tread assembly. The tread assembly is driven in a reverse direction to continue to draw the selected strand from the storage area. As the rail moves rearwardly of car 24, it passes over one of the rollers 32 and through the `appropriate guide means 34 Which directs the rail to substantially the position of gauge Which it Will occupy on the track structure as determined by the procedure set forth in the copending application Serial No. 305,725 of which the present application is a continuationin-part. It Will be appreciated that since the rail handling apparatus of the illustrative embodiment includes a pair of Winches 28, as Well as pairs ofirollers 18, 22, 32, and track assemblies 26, `a pair of rail ribbons may -be simultaneously removed from the storage area 12. This concept of simultaneous operation is clearly indicated in FIG- URE 1 of the drawings.
When it is desired to retrieve ribbons of rail from the track structure, the operation just described is reversed. In this case the appropriate Winch.28 serves to draw one end of the ribbon through the guide means 34 and over a roller 32 into one of the endless tread assemblies 26 Which is operating in a forward direction. The tread assembly moves the rail over rollers 22 and 18 Which are vertically positioned so as to place the leading end of the rail being retrieved at a level corresponding to the selected storage section into Which the rail is to be inse-rted. Continued operation of the track assembly effects the insertion of the rail into storage. Once in its stored position, the rail is secured to the tie doWn car.
It Will be appreciated that although each strand of rail is 1440 feet long, greater lengths of rail may be laid or retrieved by the apparatus described herein. This is accomplished by joining the strands in end-to-end relationship by means of coupling bolts or the like. The necessary coupling or uncoupling of the strands may be accomplished by stopping the drive means When convenient to permit access to the mating ends of successive strands.
With the overall structure of the rail handling apparatus being set forth With respect to FIGURE l, the details of the various components thereof Will be described by referi ence to FIGURES 2 through lO. In FIGURE 2 there is disclosed the conventional flat bed railroad car 14 on which there is mounted at the forward portion thereof a vertically extending support frame arrangement 16. Frame 16 comprises a pair of vertical elements 36 attached to opposite sides of the flat bed 14 and a horizontal crossbar 38 interconnecting the upper portions of the vertical supports 36. As will become more apparent With reference to FIGURE 3, frame 16 is partitioned into separate storage sections. In the illustrative embodiment, 54 such sections are provided. Each section is provided With a separate roller Which supports the underside of the rail and facilitates the insertion and removal of these rails With respect thereto. Support standards 40, Which serve to p-rovide support for the stored rails against lateral` movement, are also provided at intervals along opposite sides of the flat bed 14. The cars illustrated in FIGURE 2 are known as rack cars. j j
A plurality of, flat beds 14 are required to store the strands of rail. The rearmost and frontmost flat beds 14 of the storage area 12 support identical structure, one such car being illustrated in lFIGURE 3 of the drawings. This car is identified as a tunnel car and serves to support the ends of stored rail ribbons. As stated previously, each `of these cars includes a support frame 16 including vertical elements 36 and a horizontal cross-bar 38 such as described With reference to the rack car of FIGURE 2. The support frame 16 includes vertical and horizontal partitions Which separate the frame into a number of sections 42. A separate roller 43 is mounted Within each section 42 to support the underside of a rail positioned therein. RearWardly of the frame 16 there is illustrated an additional portion 44 of the storage means which comprises a plurality of vertical supports 46 mounted on opposite sides of the at bed car, these supports 46 serving to position and hold a plurality of spacedk horizontally oriented panels 48. The ends of stored rail ribbons rest on panels 48. stantially adjacent roller assemblies 18 are provided at the rear of the rst and final cars 14 of the storage area. Each roller assembly comprises a generally inverted U- shaped support element 50, the flange portions of Which serve to accommodate adjustable rollers S2 which may be set at any desired vertical position by conventional means. It is apparent that by proper orientation of the rollers 52, as shown for example in dash lines, the rail strands may be inserted into appropriate levels of section 44, or drawn therefrom, With ya minimum of effort.
In FIGURE 4 there is illustrated the tie down car Which is located near, or at, the middle of the storage area; At the left end of the flat bed 14 there are mounted four spaced support standards 53, 54, 56 and 58 on either side of the car. Standards 53 and 54 serve to support a horizontal member 60 at one level. Standards 54 and 56 support a second horizontal member 62 at a second level, and standards 56 and 58 support a third horizontal member 64 at a third level. Members 62 and 64 are fragmented for convenience of illustration. The levels of members 6i), 62 and 64 are selected such that these members supportv the upper three levels of the stored rail ribbon. For clarity of illustration, only one rail of each level is shown in FIGURE 4. At the right end of the tie doWn car vertical stanchions 66 are disposed on onposite sides of the car. These stanchions support additional vertically andhorizontally displaced elements 68, 70 and 72 Which support the bottom three levels of the stored rail ribbon. By the arrangement of providing support for half of the rail ribbons at each end of the tie down car, the load is equalized on each of rail trucks on Which flat bed 14 is mounted.
Intermediate the ends of tie down car additional support means are provided. Adjacent standards 5S, ver-` tical elements 74 are joined to flat bed 14 on opposite sides thereof. Elements 74 support vertically spaced A pair of sub- Stringers 76 which in turn support the bottom three levels of the rail and similar vertical elements 78 adjacent stanchions 66 support spaced Stringers 80 which in turn support the upper three levels of rail. 80 are included to support their respective rail levels only when rail ends are moving past the tie down car in loading and unloading operations.
The purpose of the tie down car is to provide an arrangement for anchoring the rail ribbons during storage. The description of actual tie down means will now be set forth. Although the tie down means is generally illustrated in FIGURE 4, the details thereof can best be understood by reference to FIGURES 5-7.
In FIGURE 5 there is illustrated a tie down block 82 having conventional handles 84 at the opposite ends thereof. Block 82 comprises a plate member which is chamfered along its bottom longitudinal edges as indicated generally by the numeral 86. The block is provided with pairs of `boreholes 88 at oppositel ends thereof. The tie down means also includes an additional pair of blocks 90 having threaded boreholes 92 therein which are aligned with holes 86.
The utilization of the tie ldown means is apparent in FIGURE 6. More particularly, the tie down means described with reference to FIGURE 5 is employed in securing the center strands of stored rail to the framework of the tie down car. In FIGURE 6 a pair of rails on one level is illustrated in dash lines. The blockA 82 is positioned such that its charnfered edges 86 cover a portion of the flanges of the adjacent rail ribbons. The blocks 90 are then positioned on the opposite side of the horizontal support element (in this illustration element 60 is employed) from the block 82 such that boreholes 92 are aligned with holes 88. Threaded bolts are then passed through block 82 to engage the threaded boreholes of blocks 90. To insure that enough friction is created to hold the rail securely in place, masonite strips (not shown) are placed between the top of the rail ilanges and the chamfered edges of the block 82 and between the base of the rail and the element 60. The tie down arrangement is made secure by tightening the threaded bolts using pneumatic wrenches powered from a reeled air hose 94 (see FIGURE 4).
The arrangement shown in FIGURE 7 is utilized on the outside rail ribbons. As is obvious from the drawing, only one chamfered edge 86 is utilized on the block 82. Similarly, only one block 90' is required. The employment `of this tie down device is the same as that described with reference to FIGURE 6, but only the outside flange of the outside rails is covered by the chamfered edge 86.
Following the tunnel car which supports the rearmost ends of the stored rail ribbons, there is coupled an additional flat bed 20, as shown in FIGURE 8, having located thereon a pair of adjustable guide rollers 22. Each of these rollers is mounted within a pivotable frame 96 which may be independently actuated by standard means, such as a hydraulic cylinder, to elevate its respective roller to a desired height. The ilat car 20 carries a power source, such as an air compressor indicated generally at 98, for positioning the adjustable rollers 22. This car also includes miscellaneous storage compartments.
The principal portion of the rail handling apparatus is carried on the ilat bed 24 illustrated in FIGURE 9 of the drawings. The main drive means 26 located thereon includes a pair of endless tread assemblies, each pair being positioned on opposite sides of the at car. In the view of FIGURE 9, only one tread assembly may be seen. Each assembly comprises a lower tread portion 100 and an adjustably positioned cooperating upper tread 102.
.Tread 102 is supported by transversely extending bars 104 which may be vertically displaced by conventional Ymeans t'o vary the distance between treads 100 and 102 Stringers 76 and thereby varying the gripping force on a rail positioned therebetween. The lower treads of each assembly are independently and selectively operable in forward and lreverse direction by means of an engine, such as that indicated generally at 106, through suitable clutch means (not shown) associated therewith. Also mounted on the top of the flat bed 24 above the main drive means 26 is a platform 108. This platform supports a pair of winches 28 positioned at opposite corners of the platform. Winches 28 are also powered by engine 106. Selection of the levels of the upper treads 102 and operation of Winches 28 is accomplished by hydraulic control means of conventional nature indicated generally at 110. Positioned forwardly and rearwardly of the main drive means 26, at the ends of dat bed 24, are pairs of spaced rail guides 112. Each of these guides comprises a conventional vertical support means for .the mounting of a stationary horizontal roller 114, which is positioned substantially at the level of the top portion of tread 100 of the main drive means 26, and a pair of stationary vertical rollers 115. Interposed between guides 112 and the main drive 26 are additional pairs of rail guides 116, each rail guide including a stationary horizontal roller 118 and an adjustable pair of vertical rollers 120. Rollers 120 are made adjustable to accommodate different rail configurations for which the width varies in accordance with the weight per yard. As the rail enters into or exits from the main drive means 26, the horizontal rollers 118 support the bottom portions of the rail whereas the vertical rollers contact and support the flange portions thereof. The rail guides 116 are mounted on support standards 122 extending between the dat car 24 and the support platform 108. Suitable stairways 126 are also provided from the support portion of iat car 24 to the platform 108 to permit access to the control means 110 for controlling the operation of the Winches 28 and the spacing between the cooperating treads 100 and 102 of each tread assembly.
The rearmost fiat bed 30 of the rail handling arrangement, as shown in FIGURE l0, includes a pair of rollers 32 mounted at the ends of pivotable frames 128 which may be independently positioned at any suitable location, as shown in dash lines, by conventional means. The other principal portion of this car comprises a pair of adjacent rail guides 34. Each guide 34 includes a pair of vertical plates 130 separated by a centrally located, vertically extending plate 132. The guide area 134 between the central vertical plate and the inner one of the plates 130 directs the rail being laid to a position substantially the same as that which it occupies when secured at the desired gauge to the ties of the track structure. Thus, when the strands of rail are laid in pairs, the ribbons are separated as they exit from the rail handling apparatus by substantially the desired gauge. Areas 136 of each rail guide 34, which areas are defined by the central plates 132 and the outer plates 130, are used to guide rail which is being retrieved from the track structure. The flat bed 30 shown in FIGURE 10 also includes miscellaneous apparatus such as storage compartments 138, a conveyor 140 for the rail cradles on which the track is laid, and an air hose reel 142 used for operating an air impact Wrench employed for removing and/ or applying rail joints at the ends of the rail strands.
Now that the structure has been described in detail, a more thorough explanation of the operation of the apparatus will be set forth. In a rail laying operation, a pair of rail ribbons are selected to be moved from the storage area 12. After the tie down means for the selected rail are released, cables connected to Winches 28 are attached to the trailing ends of the respective ribbons. Each of the pair of rollers 52 of the rearmost Hat bed 14 is adjusted to an appropriate height to receive and support the rail as it is moved by the Winches from the storage area. Similarly, pivotable frames 96 are actuated to elevate the rollers 22 to the desired supporting positions. The Winches are than actuated to draw the rails over their 7 supporting rollers 43 in the storage area 12 and over rollers 52 and 22 to be threaded through guides 112 and 116 into the main drive means 26. The upper tread 102 of each tread assembly is adjusted to provide suicient gripping force for assuming the burden of moving the rail. Once .the rail is threaded into the drive means 26, the cables from the Winches are released. The drive means then moves the strands of rail through the rail guides 116 and 112 mounted at the rear of iiat bed 24 and over the selectively positioned rollers 32 to the nal rail guides 34. The rails are directed by the vertical plates 130 and 132 through the areas 134 to position the rails approximately in the location required by the particular gauge of track structure being laid.
In retrieving rail from the .track structure, the Winches 28 are connected by the cables to the forward free ends of the loose rail. The Winches are actuated to move the rails through the respective areas 136 of the rail guides overlrollers 32 and through rail guides 112 and 116 to .the main drive means 26. The winch cables are then released and the tread assemblies are driven in a direction to draw the rail through the main drive means 26, through rail guides 116 and 112 at the forward end of flat bed 24, 4over rollers 22 and 52 to the end storage rack 44. Desired positioning of the retrieved rail as it enters the rack 44 is achieved by appropriately setting the levels of rollers 52 and 22 and providing a nose guide (not shown) over the loose end of the ribbon. As the rail passes from the forward end of rack 44, it is manually inserted within a particularly storage section 42 of the rearmost frame 16. Continued movement of the rail by the main drive means 26 advances the ribbon forwardly through corresponding storage sections 42 of the various frames 16 and over the selectively positioned rollers 52 of the frontmost car 14 to its final stored position. Subsequent strands of rail are disconnected from the stored strand and are similarly inserted into a selected storage section. The tinal strand of a continuous length is suitably urged into its stored position by .the winch 28 and its associated cable after its trailing end passes the drive means 26. The rail is then secured in the storage area by the previously described tie down means.
The above-described embodiment is illustrative of a preferred embodiment of the invention but is not intended to limit the possibilities of handling continuous ribbons of rail. While there have been shown and described the fundamental novel features of the invention, it will be understood that various omissions and substitutions and changes in the form and details of the process and apparatus for implementing the process may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of the invention. It is the intention, therefore, to be limited only as indicated by the scope of the following claims.
What is claimed is:
1. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation for moving a strand of rail between a rail storage area on a flat car arrangement and a track structure comprising: an additional at car coupled to said storage area flat car arrangement, drive means mounted on said additional flat car for moving said rail between said storage area and the track structure, and additional drive means mounted on said additional ilat car for selectively threading a strand of rail into driving engagement with said rst mentioned drive means. Y
2. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 1 wherein said rst mentioned drive means is reversible to move said rail both from the storage area to the track structure and from the track structure to the storage area.
3. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation for moving a strand of rail between a rail storage area on a flat car arrangement and a track structure comprising: at least one additional flat car coupled to said storage area flat car arrangement, drivev means mounted on said additional flat car and engageable with the rail for moving said rail between the storage area and the track structure, guide means positioned between said storage area and said iirst mentioned drive means, and additional drive means for moving the rail from a particular storage area over the guide means into driving relationship with said rst menl tioned drive means.
4. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as t set forth in claim 3 wherein said guide means is adjustable to support the rail as it moves between the storage area and the irst mentioned drive means.
5. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 3 wherein said rst mentioned drive means is reversible to move said rail both from the storage area to the track structure and from the track structure to the storage area.
6. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation vfor moving strands of rail between a rail storage area on a at car arrangement and a track structure comprising: an
additional at car coupled to said storage area flat car arrangement, a plurality of indedependently operable drive means mounted on said' additional fiat car, each drive means being capable of moving a strand of rail to thereby permit simultaneous movement of a plurality of strands of rail between the storage area and the track structure.
7. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 6 wherein said plurality of drive means are reversible to move said rail both from the storage area to the track structure and from the track structure to the storage area.
8. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 6 further comprising additional drive means for moving rail from a particular storage area to said plurality of drive means.
9. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation for moving strands of rail between a rail storage area on a at car arrangement and a track structure comprising: a partitioned-frame mounted on a plurality of cars of said ilat car arrangement, said partitions defining separate storage sections, corresponding sections within each frame providing a particular storage area for a strand of rail; at least one additional at car coupled to said storage area flat car arrangement, drive means mounted on said additional flat car for moving a strand of rail between said storage area and the track structure, and additional drive means mounted on said additional tlat car for selectively threading a strand of rail into driving engagement with said rst mentioned drive means.
10. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 9 further comprising adjustable guide means positioned between said storage area and said rst mentioned drive means for supporting the strand of rail moved between a particular storage area and the track structure.
11. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as setforth in claim 9l wherein said first mentioned drive means is reversible to move rail both from the storage area to the track structure 'and from the track structure to the storage area.
12. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 9 further comprising guide means positioned between said rst mentioned drive means and said track kstructure for positioning rail being moved to said track structure by said first mentioned drive means to substantially a desired gauge location.
13. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 9 wherein said first mentioned drive means includes a plurality of independently operable drive assemblies to permit simultaneous movement of a plurality of strands of rail between the storage area and the track structure.
14. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation for moving a strand of rail between a rail storage area on a fiat car arrangement and a track structure comprising: an
9 additional at car coupled to said storage area at car arrangement, at least one drive assembly mounted on said additional flat car for moving said rail between the storage area and the track structure, said drive assembly including a pair of cooperating endless treads between which said rail is gripped.
15. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 14 further comprising: means for adjusting the distance between said pair of treads.
16. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 14 wherein said drive assembly is reversible to move said rail both from the storage area to the track structure and from the track structure to the storage area.
17. Apparatus for use iu a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 14 wherein a pair of independently operable drive assemblies are positioned on said additional at car to permit simultaneous movement of a pair of rail strands.
18. Apparatus for use in a rail handling operation as set forth in claim 16 further including means for anchoring said rail when stored in said storage area.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 4/ 1937 Breaker 104-5 OTHER REFERENCES Railway Track and Structures Cyclopedia, 8th edition, y
A Simmons-Boardman publication. Received in Scientific Library Aug. l, 1963, p. 293.
ARTHUR L. LA POINT, Prmaly Examiner.