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Publication numberUS3417007 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 17, 1968
Filing dateFeb 24, 1966
Priority dateFeb 24, 1966
Publication numberUS 3417007 A, US 3417007A, US-A-3417007, US3417007 A, US3417007A
InventorsRobinette James B
Original AssigneeStorm Vulcan Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Means for electro-plating crankshafts
US 3417007 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 17, 1968 Filed Feb. 24, 1966 J. a. ROBINETTE 3,417,007


MEANS FOR ELECTRO-PLATING CRANI SHAFTS Filed Feb. 24, 1966 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 ATTORNEY INVENTOR James B. Robineife BY W .hl-M

United States Patent 3,417,007 MEANS FOR ELECTRO-PLATING CRANKSHAFIS James B. Robinetie, Pacolct, S.C., assignor to Storm- Vulcan, Inc., Dallas, Tex a corporation of Minnesota Filed Feb. 24, 1966, Ser. No. 529,695 8 Claims. (Cl. 204-212) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A device for plating crankshafts including a plurality of anode assemblies individually pivotally carried on a frame, each anode assembly including spaced bars of nonconductor material with anode conductor material between the sides wherein the lower edges of the nonconductor bars slidably contact the crankshaft journal and space the anode material therefrom.

This invention is concerned with means for electroplating crankshafts and is particularly concerned with means for applying a chrome-plating to the bearing surfaces of crankshafts by the use of universal anodes.

Crankshafts used in internal combustion engines customarily have alternate main bearing surfaces which rotatably support the crankshaft in the engine'and offset crank bearing surfaces which serve as journals for the connecting rods of the engine.

Since these bearing surfaces are subject to continuous wear it has been the practice to plate them with a hard materials, such as chromium.

It is desirable that the chrome-plating applied to the bearing surfaces be deposited in uniform thickness over the entire area of the bearing in order to preserve the uniform bearing surfaces and to prevent undue wear at some points. At the same time it is desired that the plating material be directed to and confined to the hearing surfaces, where it is primarily needed and that it not be deposited over the other areas of the crankshaft.

The present invention has for its primary object the provision or means for electro-plating the bearing surfaces on crankshafts which would uniformly apply same to the bearing surfaces in even distribution and thickness to eliminate the necessity of post-grinding, but at the same time will prevent the undue dispersion of the chromeplating to the cheek faces between the bearing surfaces.

Another object of the invention is to provide means for uniformly plating both the main bearing surfaces and the crank bearing surfaces simultaneously, or selected ones of the main bearing surfaces or crank bearing surfaces may be plated without plating the others.

Still another object of the invention is to provide means for plating the bearing surfaces on crankshafts which is quickly and easily adjustable along the surfaces of the bearings to provide for uniform distribution for chrome plating over the entire surface of the bearing, without exposing other areas on the crankshaft to chromeplating.

A still further object of the invention is to provide means for chrome-plating bearings on crankshafts which is conformable to different dimensions of crankshafts without adjustment or changing anodes in such device.

A general object of the invention is to provide means for plating bearing surfaces on crankshafts which is relatively inexpensive, is simple to apply and requires a minimum amount of adjustment and substitution and eliminates the necessity for the substitution of anodes for different sizes of crankshafts.

Other and further objects of the invention will become apparent upon reading the detailed specification herein- Patented Dec. 17, 1968 after following and by referring to the drawings annexed hereto.

A suitable embodiment of the invention is shown in the attached drawings, wherein,

FIGURE I is a front elevational view of the crank-.

shaft electro-plating device incorporating the invention, showing same as it would appear while the crankshaft is suspended in a solution tank,

FIGURE II is a transverse sectional view taken on the line II-II of FIGURE I,

FIGURE III is a transverse sectional view taken on the line IlI--III of FIGURE I,

FIGURE tlV is a fragmentary transverse sectional view taken on the line -IV--IV of FIGURE '1,

FIGURE V is a side elevational view of a typical anode assembly used in the device,

FIGURE V1 is a transverse sectional view taken on the line VI-VI of FIGURE V, showing the sectionalized anode assembly in engagement with a crank bearing surface of a crankshaft, and showing the electrical field providing a uniform distribution pattern of the chromeplating over the surface of the bearing journal.

Numeral references are employed to designate the various parts shown in the drawings and like numerals indicate like pans throughout the various figures of the drawings.

The numeral 1 indicates a portable stand for supporting the chrome-plating device, which stand includes corner legs 2 having casters 3 on the lower ends thereof and suitable longitudinal braces 2a.

An anode suspension frame 4 consists of side members 5 and end members 6 providing a rectangular anode support frame. The end members 6 are attached to the side members 5 by means of suitable bolts 7. The end members 8 of the stand 1 have flanges 8a thereon within which the side members 5 of the anode suspension frame may be deposited in the manner hereinafter described.

Lifting plates 9 and 10 are provided at each end of the anode suspension frame, said plates being connected together by a cross beam 11. A lifting eye 12 is provided centrally of the cross beam 11 so. that-the anode suspension frame 4 may be picked up and deposited on the portable stand 1 in the manner hereinafter described.

Spaced bearing suspension arms 13 and 14 are secured to one of the side frames 5 by means of bolts 13a.

A suspension rod 15 has its ends secured to the spaced bearing suspension bracket 13 and 14, and there are a plurality of bearing blocks 16 adjustably disposed on the suspension rod 15. Each of the bearing blocks 16 supports one of the anode assemblies 17, hereinafter described so that the anode assemblies are individually pivotal on the bearing blocks 16 with reference to the end brackets 13 and 14.

The bearing blocks 16 are attached to the rod 15 by set screws 16a so that the set screws may be loosened to allow the bearing blocks and the anode assemblies 17, carried thereby, to be adjusted longitudinally on the rod 15 for the purpose hereinafter mentioned.

Each anode assembly 17 includes spaced side plates 18 (FIGURE VII) made of non-conductive material, such as plastic, between which are disposed an anode 20 made of highly conductive material, such as lead.

The anode material 20 is comprised of spaced sides 20a and 2017 which, as shown, are two ply and extend from the inner end to the outer end of the anode assem- 'bly 17 (see FIGURES -II and V).

A power conductor 23 has an exposed end 24 which is clamped between the double inner end 19 of the anode 20. The sides 18 of the anode assembly 17 and the spaced legs 20a and 20b of the conductor material 20 are held together in spaced relationship by means of titanium screws 22 which pass therethrough, and are spaced apart 3 by appropriate washers 22a dispersed between the legs a and 20b through which the screws 22 pass.

The power conductor cables 23 are attached in electrical communication with a conductor bar 26 by means of attachment eyes 23a thereon which are secured to the conductor bar 26 by means of appropriate bolts passing through the eyes 23a and the bar 26.

Power may be applied to the conductor bar 26 through a power supply cable 27, attached in electrical contact therewith.

Elongated slots are provided through the side walls 18 of the anode assembly 17, and the lower edges 21 of the spaced sides 20a and 20b of the anode conductor 20 are deflected outwardly into said slots so that the edges of such conductor are exposed through said slots. It will also be observed that the conductor 20 is exposed between the lower edges of the sides 18 of the anode assembly (FIGURE VI). The slots 25 provide circulation passages for allowing circulation of plating solution between the sides 18 and anode material 20.

A beating suspension rod 28 is secured medially to a cross-brace 29 extending between the side frame members 5 by means of bolt and nut 30 which extends through the cross-brace 29 and appropriate clamp plates 30a and 30b disposed above and below same. The suspension rod 28 suspends the crankshaft suspension housing 31 to the cross-brace 29.

The end 32 of the crankshaft 33 is rotatably suspended in the suspension housing 31 and is disengageably attaohed therein.

The crankshaft 33 includes crank pin journals 34 and main bearing journals 35.

The crankshaft 33 also includes the usual drive gears 36 and 37 at each end thereof.

'Electric motor 38 is mounted by an appropriate mounting bracket on the anode suspension frame 4. The motor 38 rotates a drive chain 39 which in turn rotates a sprocket 40 which, through gear box 40a rotates a sprocket 41, which in turn drives a chain 42 to rotate a sprocket 43. The sprocket 43 rotates a shaft 44 which is rotatably mounted in a crankshaft suspension housing 45.

A sprocket 46 is secured to the shaft 44, which rotates a chain 47 to rotate a sprocket 49, which is attached to a driven shaft 48, which in turn is rotated. The shaft 48 is mounted on appropriate bearings in the walls of the housing 45.

A balance wheel plate 50 is attached to the outer end of the shaft 48 and is rotatable therewith.

An attachment plate 51 is secured to the inner end of the shaft 48. The attachment flange 52, normally provided on the end of the crankshaft journal, may be secured to the attachment plate 51 by means of appropriate attachment pins 53.

Thus, it will be seen that the crankshaft 33 may be rotatably attached between the suspension bracket 31 and the suspension housing 45.

A plating solution tank or container 54 has support legs 55 on the lower end thereof. The solution tank 54 may be disposed within the frame 1, as shown in FIG- URE I and -II, so that the crankshaft 33, with anodes in place thereon may be lowered thereinto to the position shown in FIGURE I. The solution tank 54 is filled with sufiicient chrome-plating solution so that the crankshaft 33 and the portions of the anode assemblies 17 which are in contact therewith, are immersed below the level of the liquid.

It is recommended that prior to plating the crankshaft areas not desired to be plated be masked such as by taping and immersing in wax, which congcals thereon, and removing the tape and wax from the surfaces to be plated.

In operation, a crankshaft 33 is suspended to the suspension bracket 31 in housing 45 in the manner shown in FIGURE I.

The anode assemblies 17 are then adjusted longitudinally .of the suspension rod 15 so that the lower edges thereof will contact the crank pin journals 34 and the main bearing journals 35 substantially medially of the length of the journals thereof, as show in FIGURE I. The bearing 16 and the anode assemblies will then be fixed against longitudinal movement on the shaft 15. Such suspension of crankshaft 33, and adjustment of anode assembly 17 with relation thereto, may be made before the frame 4 is placed atop the portable frame 1. The suspension frame 4 may be picked up by a suitable hoist attached to the eye 12 and the frame may be set down upon the side frames 8 and end frames 6 of the stand 1. The solution tank 54 has previously been placed under the portable frame 1 so that the crankshaft journals and the anode assemblies with which they are in contact are suspended below the level of the plating solution 56- in the container 54.

If desired the suspension frame 4 could be suspended directly tothe ends of tank 54 by suitable brackets (not shown).

Power is applied to the motor 38 to thereby rotate the crankshaft 33 in the solution 56.

Power is also applied to the supply cable 27 and therefrom to the anode conductor 20 to supply an electrical field, indicated at 58 between the anode conductor 20 and the journals 34 and 35, which act as cathodes, to cause the deposition of chrome-plating on the surface of the journal with which the anode is in contact.

It will be observed that the straight lower surface 57 of the anode assembly is in slidable contact with the journal 34 or 35. It will further be observed that crank pin journals 34 rotate in an eccentric pattern, as shown in FIGURE III, but nevertheless, the anode assembly 17 is maintained in uniform constant contacttherewith as the anode assemlby pivots upwardly and downwardly in response to the eccentric rotation of the crank pin journal.

The main bearing journals rotate in the same horizontal plane and on a common axis, and therefore, the anode assembly 17 does not need to pivot or move up and down while in contact with the main bearing journals.

By virtue of the straight lower edges of the anode assemblies 17 the anode assemblies may be interchangeably used on either the crank pin journals or the main bearing journals and will conform to the surfaces thereof as the crankshaft rotates.

Furthermore, it will be observed that the lower edges of the anode conductors 20 are exposed, both through the slots 25 provided in the wall of the side members 17, and between the lower edges of the side members 18 so that a field or dispersal pattern 58 is provided which is directed downwardly and laterally so as to cover the entire exposed surface of the journal 34 or 35, to thereby provide for even distribution of plating material over the surface thereof.

-It will further be observed that any one or more of the anode assemblies 17 may be eliminated if certain journals 34 or 35 are not desired to be plated, and the remaining anode assemblies on the rod 15 may be adjusted longitudinally to contact any selected journals 34 or 35.

It will further be seen that the anode assembly will accommodate varying sizes of crankshafts and journal diameters without modification and without changing the anode assemblies to accommodate different sizes of crankshafts.

It will thus be seen that 1 have provided a crankshaft plating device which is easy to install and operate, which accommodates itself to different sizes of crankshafts, which provides a uniform plating of chrome or other matcrlal on the crankshaft journals as the crankshaft is rotated in the plating solution.

It will be understood that other and further forms of my invention may be devised without departing from the spirit and scope of the appended claims.

Having described my invention I claim:

1. In a device for electro-plating crankshafts, said crankshafts having main bearing journals and crank pin journals, said device comprising, a support frame, a plurality of longitudinally spaced anode assemblies pivotally carried by the frame at their upper ends and having lower edges slidably supported on the journals; the said journals and the portions of the anode assemblies in contact therewith being arranged to be immersed under the level of plating solution in a container therefor.

2. The combination called for in claim 1 with the addition of means to laterally adjust the spacing between the anode assemblies.

3. The combination called for in claim 1 wherein the support frame includes a portion separable from the rest of the frame, the said anodes being pivotally attached to said portion.

4. The combination called for in claim 1 wherein the lower edges of the anode assemblies contacting the journals are straight.

5. The combination called for in claim 1 wherein the anode assembly is comprised of spaced parallel sides of nonconductor material; anode conductor material disposed between the sides; parallel slots through the sides; the conductor material being formed of spaced parallel legs having lower edges deflected outwardly into said slots.

6. The combination called for in claim 5 wherein the lower edges of the sides space the anode conductor material from the surface of the journals.

7. An anode assembly comprising, spaced bars of nonconductor material; anode conductor material disposed between the bars; the lower edges of the bars being straight and being spaced below the lower edge of the anode conductor material; and at least one aperture through each bar.

8. The combination called for in claim 7 with the addition of parallel slots through the spaced bars; and the anode conductor material is comprised of spaced legs having lower edges deflected outwardly into said slots.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,473,290 6/1949 Millard 204-2l2 2,530,677 11/1950 Berkenkotter et a1. 204-224 2,706,174 4/1955 Wells 204-212 2,931,764 4/1960 Pyles 204-212 3,293,166 12/1966 Cowing 204-224 HOWARD S. WILLIAMS, Primary Examiner.

D. R. JORDAN, Assistant Examiner.

Cl. XJR.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2473290 *Oct 21, 1944Jun 14, 1949George E MillardApparatus for plating journals of crankshafts
US2530677 *Jan 17, 1946Nov 21, 1950Berkenkotter Edward LApparatus for plating crankshafts
US2706174 *Apr 6, 1951Apr 12, 1955Wells Harold RApparatus for electro-plating crankshaft journals
US2931764 *Mar 29, 1956Apr 5, 1960Horst Corp Of America V DApparatus for electroplating bearing surfaces of a crankshaft
US3293166 *May 29, 1963Dec 20, 1966Gen ElectricElectrode for electrolytic machining
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5738769 *Mar 22, 1996Apr 14, 1998Chin; Raymond Yuen KeungAnode holder
U.S. Classification204/212, 204/222, 204/288, 204/224.00R
International ClassificationC25D7/00
Cooperative ClassificationC25D7/00
European ClassificationC25D7/00