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Publication numberUS3604755 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 14, 1971
Filing dateJul 24, 1969
Priority dateJul 24, 1969
Also published asCA943565A1
Publication numberUS 3604755 A, US 3604755A, US-A-3604755, US3604755 A, US3604755A
InventorsKrekeler Claude B
Original AssigneeCincinnati Mine Machinery Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Cutter bar, cutter chain and sprocket assembly
US 3604755 A
Images(5)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [72] inventor Claude B. Krekeler Cincinnati, Ohio 1211 Appl. No. 844,551 {22] Filed July 24, 1969 [45] Patented Sept. 14, 1971 [73] Assignee The Cincinnati Mine Machinery Co. Cincinnati, Ohio [54] CUTTER BAR, CUTTER CHAIN AND SPROCKET ASSEMBLY 46 Claims, 20 Drawing Figs. [52] US. Cl 299/84, 74/229, 74/250, 143/32 [51] Int. Cl ..E2lc 25/30, E210 25/34 [50] Field of Search 299/82, 83, 84; 74/229,250; 143/32 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,239,384 9/1917 Gisch 143/32 1,349,557 8/1920 Boswell 143/32 2,418,199 4/1947 Simmons 74/250 Primary Examiner-Emest R. Purser Attorney-Melville, Strasser, Foster & Hoffman ABSTRACT: A cutter bar, cutter chain and sprocket assembly wherein means are provided to maintain the pintles joining the chain links in spaced relationship to and beyond the chain guide surfaces on the peripheral edges of the cutter bar. The ends of the pintles are free to extend beyond the exterior surfaces of the links they join, although they do not necessarily have to be so arranged. The pintles are preferably freely rotatable and means may be provided at their ends to hold the pintles in place with respect to the links they join. The pintles are so located and the link so configured that the line of force passing through the pintles also passes through body portions of the links which support cutter bits so that the distance between this line of force and the points of contact between the cutter bits and the material being mined is greatly reduced.

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ATTOR N EYS CUTTER BAR, CUTTER CHAIN AND SPROCKET ASSEMBLY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the invention The invention relates to a cutter bar, cutter chain and sprocket assembly for mining machines and the like, and more particularly to improvements in the individual parts thereof.

2. Description of the Prior Art Prior art workers have made extensive use of cutter bars as, for example, in undercutting a seam of material to be mined, preparatory to loosening a portion of the material by blasting. Cutter bars have taken various forms depending upon the use to which they have been put. In some instances, for example, a cutter bar is rigidly mounted on a mining machine so that the machine itself must be moved in order to move the cutter bar. In other instances, a cutter bar is pivotally mounted to a mining machine so that it may be traversed in the direction of the out.

In general, a cutter bar comprises an elongated element having a cutter chain passing about its peripheral portions and driven by the mining machine to which the cutter bar is affixed. In its usual form, the cutter bar is so constructed as to have a peripheral channel or passageway in which the cutter chain rides. For example, in its most typical form, a cutter bar comprises a pair of parallel spaced beams having plate members affixed to the top and bottom surfaces thereof. Edge portions of the plate members define the sidewalls of the cutter chain channel while the beams themselves form the channel bottoms. The end of the cutter bar is semicircular in configuration so that the channel is continuous about the periphery of the cutter bar. The sides and bottom of the cutter bar channel are frequently lined with wear strips of hardened steel which may be replaced as needed.

Cutter chains have taken many forms. In general, however, a cutter chain comprises a plurality of link members pivoted together by pintles. Certain of the link members have means for mounting cutter bits. in the normal cutter chain, there is a plurality of double-link members providing spaced cheeks interconnected at the top by blocklike portions or lugs, which are perforated so as to receive the shanks of cutter bits or cutter bit holders. Alternate link members are single elements, the ends of which lie between the cheeks of the double-link members, the various elements being pivoted together by pintle means. The pintle means are generally cylindrical elements which pass through perforations in the cheeks of the doublelink members and perforations in the ends of the alternate single-link members.

Cutter bar-cutter chain assemblies of the general type described above have been in widespread and successful use for many years. However, they are characterized by a number of problems and disadvantages. For example, since each of the double-link members providing spaced cheeks has its cheeks interconnected at the top by a block or lug for mounting a cutter bit, the point of contact between the cutter bit tip and the material being mined lies at a considerable distance from the line of force on the chain passing through the chain pintles. As a consequence, there is a strong tendency for the lugbearing link members to pivot in a direction opposite to the cutting direction. This, in turn, creates considerable vibration and kick in the cutter chain and the assembly as a whole.

The various cutting forces and vibrational strains of the cutter bar have a tendency, in time, to cause the cutter bar channel sidewall to spread apart. This spreading of the channel walls results in additional vibration of the parts and additional wear thereof. The undesirable effects created by the spreading of the channel walls is cumulative because the cutter bar normally outlasts a number of cutter chains.

Finally, since the cutter chain in prior art structures passes about the cutter bar in a peripheral channel, and since the pintles connecting the chain link members lie within the peripheral channel, the pintles cannot have their ends extend beyond the outside surfaces of the checks of the doublecheeked link members. As a result, great difficulties have been encountered in devising means for keeping the pintles in place. Prior art workers have developed many forms of specifically configured pintles together with a multitude of keys, clips and other keeping devices. In most embodiments the pintles are nonrotatively held either by the single-link elements or the double-link elements with the result that they were not subject to even wean.

The present invention is directed to improved means for solving the various problems outlined above.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention is directed to improved cutter bar, cutter chain and sprocket assemblies. in general, the cutter bar may comprise an elongated platelike member. The cutter bar is suitable mounted on a mining machine. The forward end of the cutter bar has guide means for the cutter chain. A sprocket is mounted in association with the rearward end of the cutter bar to drive the chain about the peripheral edges thereof.

The present invention contemplates a number of embodiments of cutter chain-cutter bar assemblies. in on embodiment the cutter chain may be of a type comprising a plurality of link members each having a body portion adapted to mount a cutter bit. The body portion has a single-link extension at its forward end and a pair of spaced link extensions at its rearward end. These link extensions are so configured that the forward extension of one link member is adapted to be received between the spaced link extensions of an adjacent link member. Pintle means pass through the coaxial perforations in the nested link extensions. Each link member has a pair of spaced legs adapted to straddle, and slidably engage the wear strips on the edges of the cutter bar.

A second type of cutter chain bay be used, differing from the first primarily in that those link members having body portions adapted to mount cutter bit means have spaced, doublelink extensions at both ends. These link members are joined, in turn, by single-link members the ends of which are located between the double-link extensions of adjacent cutter-bit-carrying link members. Again, the nested extensions are jointed by pintle means passing through coaxial perforations therein.

In both chain types thus far described, each link member mounting a cutter bit means may have a pair of spaced legs adapted to straddle and to slidably engage the peripheral edge portions of the cutter bar. As indicated above, these edge portions may constitute wear strips. By virtue of this construction, the entire cutter chain is exposed to the material being mined and will provide a sweeping action for the material which has been cut.

When the cutter-bit-mounting links are provided with spaced pairs of legs, a sprocket may be provided having a plurality of evenly spaced lateral extensions protruding from both faces thereof and adapted to engage the edges of the spaced legs of each bit-carrying link member so as to drive the chain about the periphery of the cutter bar.

On the other hand, a conventional sprocket may be used with the firstmentioned type of chain. In such an instance the sprocket teeth engage the rear surface of the body portion of each link member between the spaced pair of link extensions thereon.

Whether the link-members-carrying cutter bit means are joined directly together as in the first-mentioned type of chain or by means of single-link elements as in the second chain type, each cutter-bit-carrying link member may be provided with a single leg of inverted T-shaped cross section. in this instance, the cutter bar has a peripheral channel of inverted T shaped cross section. The legs of the bit-carrying link members are adapted to be slidably engaged in the cutter bar channel. The driving sprocket will be of substantially conventional design adapted to engage edge portions of the T-shaped legs and to drive the chain by virtue of this engagement.

In all of the embodiments thus far described, the pintle means are located beyond the peripheral edges of the cutter bar. By virtue of this construction, the distance from the point of contact between the cutter bit tip and the material being cut and the line of force passing through the pintles is greatly reduced. Similarly, the ends of each pintle may extend beyond the outside surfaces of the link members it joins. Fastening means may be applied to the pintle ends and the pintles, themselves, may be freely rotatable and thereby subject to even wear. The holes in the link members through which the pintles extend are also subject to wear, thereby further distributing the wear.

The assembly of the present invention is far simpler in construction and less expensive to manufacture than prior art structures. The individual parts are subject to less vibration, kick and wear, and are caused to wear more evenly.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a fragmentary plan view illustrating one embodiment of a cutter bar, cutter chain and sprocket assembly of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary side elevational view of a cutter chain of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is a fragmentary plan view of the cutter chain of FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view illustrating another mode of construction of the link members of FIGS. 2 and 3.

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary perspective view illustrating one form of pintle.

FIG. 6 is a plan view of a retaining ring or spring clip for use with the pintle of FIG. 5.

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along the section line 7-7 of FIG. 1 and showing a cutter bit mounted in the link member.

FIG. 8 is a view similar to FIG. 7 illustrating another form of wear strip on the cutter bar and another placement of a cutter bit in the link member.

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view similar to FIG. 7 illustrating a modified form of chain link member similar to that of FIGS. 2 and 3.

FIG. 10 is a fragmentary perspective view of the forward end of a cutter bar of the present invention.

FIG. 11 is a perspective view illustrating another embodiment of the cutter chain of the present invention.

FIG. 12 is a fragmentary elevational view illustrating another embodiment of a cutter chain-cutter bar assembly.

FIG. 13 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along the section line 13-13 of FIG. 12.

FIG. 14 is a perspective view of cutter chain link members similar to FIG. 11, but having a single cutter-bar-engaging leg.

FIG. 15 is a fragmentary plan view illustrating a conventional drive sprocket and another embodiment of the cutter chain of the present invention.

FIG. 16 is a perspective view of a chain link member of FIG. 15.

FIG. 17 is a plan view of a pair of chain link members illustrating yet another embodiment of the present invention.

FIGS. 18 and 19 are perspective views of special sprockets which may be used with certain of the chains of this invention.

FIG. 20 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view similar to FIG. 7 illustrating a chain link member carrying two cutter bits.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS While the present invention is described in terms of a cutter bar assembly for a mining machine of the type used in undercutting a seam of coal of the like, it will be understood by one skilled in the art that it is within the scope of the invention to apply the principles thereof to any suitable form of chainbearing mining machine. The mining machine itself and the manner in which the cutter bar is affixed to the mining machine are well known in the art and do not constitute a part of the present invention.

Reference is made to FIG. 1 wherein an embodiment of the assembly of the present invention is shown. In FIG. I, the cutter bar is generally indicated at l, the sprocket is generally indicated at 2 and the cutter chain is generally indicated at 3.

The cutter bar 1 comprises an elongated, substantially rectangular platelike member 4. The longitudinal edges 5 and 6 of the cutter bar 4 may each be provided with a pair of wear strips. Two such wear strips are shown at 7 and 8 in FIG. I. The wear strips may be made of any suitable material such as hardened steel and may be fastened to the cutter bar body 4 in any well-known way, inclusive of bolts, rivets and the like (not shown). The fastening means should be appropriately countersunk so that the exterior surfaces of the wear strips are unobstructed. Preferably the wear strips should be affixed to the cutter bar in such a way as to be readily replaceable, although the wear strips may constitute integral parts of the cutter bar ifdesired.

FIG. 7 shows an exemplary pair of wear strips 70 and 7b. In this instance, the wear strips are of angle iron cross section so as to protect both the sides and end portion of the longitudinal edge 5 of the cutter bar. The wear strips should be so sized as to have a small clearance (indicated at 9) to insure that they may be properly located on the sides of the cutter bar body. It will be understood by one skilled in the art that the wear strips 7a and 7b could be an integral, one-piece structure of channelshaped cross section, as illustrated at 7c and 8c in FIG. 10.

FIG. 8 illustrates an alternate form of wear strip. In this instance, the wear strips 7d and 7e comprise elongated members of rectangular cross section, affixed to the sides of the cutter bar body adjacent the longitudinal edge 5.

Referring again to FIG. I, the sprocket 2 is mounted on the mining machine at the rearward end of the cutter bar 1. The manner in which the cutter bar and the sprocket are mounted on the mining machine is not shown. These mountings may be conventional, and do not constitute a part of the present invention.

The sprocket comprises the means by which the chain 3 is driven about the peripheral edges of the cutter bar 1. The sprocket comprises a disclike element having a plurality of transverse extensions 10 spaced about its periphery. The extensions l0 protrude from both faces of the disclike element so that they will engage both legs of the cutter chain link members (as will be described hereinafter).

The body of the sprocket 2 should have a transverse thickness approximately equal to the thickness of the cutter bar body 4. The extensions 10 should be so sized as to enable them to engage the legs of the cutter chain elements. The extensions 10 may be integral portions of the sprocket body, elements affixed to either face of the sprocket body or elements affixed in notches in the sprocket body. The peripheral portion of the sprocket may have any suitable configuration. For example, it may be circular as illustrated in FIG. 1, or it may be relieved (as shown by the dotted line 11) so as to have a scalloped configuration.

FIGS. 2, 3 and 7 illustrate one embodiment of the cutter chain of the present invention. The cutter chain is made up of a plurality of substantially identical link members. One such link member is generally indicated at 12 in FIGS. 2, 3 and 7. The link member comprises a body portion 13 having a single forward link extension 14 and a pair of spaced rearward link extensions 15 and 16. It will be noted that the forward link extension 14 and the rearward link extensions 15 and 16 are in line with the body 13.

The forward link extension 14 has a transverse perforation 17. The rearward link extensions 15 and 16 have coaxial transverse perforations l8 and 19, respectively.

The body 13 has a bottom surface 20 which may be planar if the sprocket 2 has a noncircular peripheral configuration. When the sprocket 2 has a circular peripheral configuration, the central portion of the bottom surface 20 may have an arcuate relief (as shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 7) so as to conform to the sprocket edge. When the arcuate relief extends the full width of the bottom surface 20, the link member will ride on bottom surface portions 20a and 20b (FIG. 2) when in straight travel. If the relief is of a width substantially equal to the thickness of the sprocket body, shoulders 20c and 20d (FIG. 7) will be formed extending the length of the bottom surface of the link member and comprising bearing surfaces when the link member travels along the straight, longitudinal edges of the cutter bar.

The chain link body l3 also has a pair of spaced legs 21 and 22 extending therefrom. As shown in FIG. 7, the distance between the legs 21 and 22 is such as to permit a sliding fit of the cutter bar and wear strips therebetween. The legs 21 and 22 have inwardly directed extensions 23 and 24, respectively, so as to render the link member captively mounted on the cutter bar by virtue of the interaction between the extension 23 and the wear strip 7b and the extension 24 and the wear strip 7a.

The forward and rearward edges of the legs 21 and 22 are relieved. Reliefs 25 and 26 on leg 22 are illustrated in FIG. 2. The leg 21 (not shown in FIG. 2) will be relieved in an identical manner.

The purpose of the relief is clearly shown in FIG. I. The reliefs are so angled as to serve as engagement surfaces for the sprocket extensions 10 whereby the extensions can engage and drive the link members about the cutter bar. It will be understood by one skilled in the art that the reliefs on those link member legs on the other side of the sprocket will similarly be engaged by sprocket extensions 10 on that side of the sprocket.

In FIG. 8, the link body 13 is substantially identical to that of FIG. 7 and is provided with identical legs having the same index numerals. The interaction of the extended leg portions 23 and 24 and the wear strips 7e and 7d is the same. The only difference between the embodiment of FIG. 8 and that of FIG. 7 is the fact that the bottom surface of the body 13 rides directly on the edge 5 of the cutter bar body 4 and the outermost edges of the wear strips 7d and 7e.

In FIGS. 2 and 3, adjacent link members are fragmentarily illustrated at 12a and 12b. These link members are substantially identical to the link member 12 and like parts have been given like index numerals followed by a and b, respectively. As will be evident from FIGS. 2 and 3, the forward link extensions 14 of the link 12 will nest between the spaced rearward link extensions 15a and 16a of link member 12a. The perforations 17, 18a and 19a of the link extensions 17, 15a and 16a, respectively, will be coaxial and will accept a cylindrical pintle 27.

Similarly, the link extension 14b of link member 12b will nest between the rearward link extensions 15 and 116 of link member 12. The perforations 17b, 18 and 19 in link extensions 14b, 15 and 16 respectively, will be coaxial and will accept a cylindrical pintle 28. In this way, adjacent link members may be joined to form an endless cutter chain.

Since the pintle-carrying link extensions are affixed directly to the body portions of the chain link members and since the pintles do not ride in a continuous channel on the cutter bar, the ends of the pintles 27 and 23 may extend beyond the exterior surfaces of link extensions 15zz-l6a and 15-16, respectively. This in turn, enables the use of fastening means at the ends of the pintles. Thus, the pintles may have a diameter such as to be freely rotatable in the perforations in the link extensions, resulting in even wear of the pintles and far longer pintle life.

Any suitable means may be used to hold the pintles in their proper place. For example, pintle 27 in FIG. 2 is illustrated as having a nut 29 threaded thereon. Pintle 28 in FIG. 2 is illustrated as having a transverse perforation 28a adapted to receive a roll pin 30.

In FIG. 3, pintle 27 is illustrated as having a head 31 at one end, and a roll pin 32 at the other. Pintle 28 is illustrated as being held in place by spring clips or retaining means 33 at both ends.

The latter arrangement is more clearly illustrated in FIGS. 5 and 6. As shown, the pintle 28 is provided near its end with an annular groove 34. The annular groove is adapted to receive the retaining ring or spring clip 33 of FIG. 6. The outside diameter of the ring 33 is greater than the diameter of the pintle and the diameter of the perforations through which the pintle extends. The inside diameter of the ring 33 is less than the diameter of the pintle and substantially equivalent to the diameter of the groove or notch 34. The ring 33 is split so as to form an opening between its ends. The width of the opening is less than the diameter of the notch or groove 34. The retaining ring will be made of resilient metal or the like and can be forced into position in the groove 34.

From the above it will be evident to one skilled in the art that the pintles 27 and 28 may be provided with any of the above described retaining means, or any combination of them.

The spaced rearward link extensions of each chain element may be provided with rearwardly facing planar surfaces. Such surfaces are illustrated at 34 and 35 on link extensions 15 and 16, respectively, and at 34a and 35a on link extensions 15a and l7a, respectively. The forward end of the link element 12 may be provided with planar surfaces 36 and 37 on either side of the link extensions 14. Similarly, the link element ll2b may be provided with planar surfaces 36b and 37b on either side of link extension 14b. When the cutter is passing through its straight flights on either side of the cutter bar I, the planar surface 34-35 and 3411-3511 on the rearward link extensions will coact with the planar forward surfaces 36b-37b and 36-37, respectively, to rigidify the cutter chain. It is also within the scope of the invention to configure a portion of the forward surfaces 3637 or 36b-37b as shown in FIG. 1 at 37c and 37d. This configuration aids in the prevention of the accumulation of fines and foreign materials between the rearward link ex tensions of one chain element and the forward faces of the adjacent chain element.

The type of cutter bit or cutter bit adapter carried by the body I3 does not constitute a limitation on the present invention. For purposes of an exemplary showing, the body 13 is illustrated in FIGS. 2, 7 ans 8 as carrying a cutter bit of the general type set forth in U.S. Pat. No. 3,] 14,537. It will be understood, however, that other types of cutter bits or cutter bit adapter assemblies may be used. For example, the link members may be adapted to mount the pick-type conical cutter bits, in extensive use today, and exemplified by U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,397,012 and 3,397,013. Similarly, nonrotatable cutter bits made from round stock may be used. Such cutter bits are taught in the copending application entitled CUTTER BITS AND MEANS FOR MOUNTING THEM, Ser. No. 753,398, filed Aug. 19, 1968 in the name of the same inventor.

For purposes of an exemplary illustration, the body 13 is shown as having a shank-receiving perforation 38 and a transverse hole 39 partially intersecting the shank-receiving perforation. The transverse hole 39 is adapted to receive a resilient retaining means, which may be of the type described in the above-mentioned U.S. Pat. No. 3,114,537. The retaining means comprises a pin 40, at least the ends of which are surrounded in bodies of resilient material 41. The retainer may have a longitudinal key 42 and the transverse hole 49 may have a longitudinal keyway 43. Interaction of the key 42 and the keyway 43 will maintain the resilient retainer in its proper orientation, with the pin extending part way into the shankreceiving perforation 38.

The cutter bit, generally indicated at 44, comprises a head 45 and a shank 46. The head 45 may be provided with a hard cutting tip 450, gauge-determining abutment surfaces 47 and a surface 48 for engagement by a bit removal tool. The shank 46 has a relief 49 at its bottom rearward edge and a substantially hook-shaped notch 50 in its rear surface. When the shank of the cutter bit is inserted in the shank-receiving perforation 38, the relief surface 49 will cause the retainer pin 40 to move rearwardly and out of the shank-receiving perforation. When the cutter bit is in its fully seated position, the retainer pin 40 will engage the hook-shaped notch 50 in the cutter bit shank to maintain the cutter bit shank in its seated position.

In the usual practice, the cutter bits on the cutter chain are oriented at various angles so that a cut is made of sufficient width to permit passage of the cutter bar-cutter chain assembly. To accomplish this, the top surface of the body 13 may be appropriately configured and the shank-receiving perforation 38 and transverse hole 29 may be properly oriented. In FIG. 7, for example, the cutter bit 44 is shown lying in substantially the same plane as the cutter bar 1. However, the cutter bit 44 may be oriented anywhere along the dotted arcuate line A. FIG. 8, for example, illustrates the cutter bit 44 lying at an angle of about 45 to the transverse axis of the cutter bar 1. The placement of the cutter bit may be varied throughout an arc of about I80". It is also within the scope of the present invention to make the body 13 of the chain element of such size as to enable it to mount more than one cutter bit at varying angularities.

FIG. is a perspective view illustrating the forward end of the cutter bar 1. As indicated above, for purposes of an exemplary showing the cutter bar body 4 is illustrated as having wear strips 70 and 8c affixed to its longitudinal edges, the wear strips having a U-shaped cross-sectional configuration. The forwardmost end of the cutter bar comprises a shoe 51, one end of which is affixed to the forward end of the cutter bar body 4. The shoe 51 may be affixed to the cutter bar body by welding or the like, or it may be removably affixed by bolts or other suitable means (not shown). On the other hand, the shoe may constitute an integral part of the cutter bar. The forward end of the shoe 51 is substantially semicircular. The peripheral edges of the shoe are protected by wear strip means generally indicated at 52. The wear strip means 52 may be of any of the types set forth above, and removably affixed to the shoe by conventional means. Preferably, however, the wear strip means 52 comprises an integral portion of the shoe 51. This is true because the wear strip portion 52 will be subjected to greater stresses than wear strip means along the longitudinal edges of the cutter bar and, if removably affixed, will have a tendency to be broken off in time, during the cutting operation. That portion of the wear strip means 52, passing about the semicircular edge of the shoe 51 will be narrower than the straight portion (as illustrated in FIG. 10) to permit the leg extensions 23 and 24 to pass thereabout.

It will be understood by one skilled in the art that it would be within the scope of the invention to use a sprocket at the forward end of the cutter bar rather than the shoe 51. For example, the sprocket could be identical to the one shown in FIG. 1, except that it would be an idler sprocket rather than a driven one. For purposes of the present discussion, FIG. 1 could be considered the forward end of the cutter bar 1 with the sprocket 2 rotatively mounted thereto by means not shown.

The operation of the cutter bar, cutter chain and sprocket assembly of the present invention will be obvious in view of FIG. 1. If the cutter chain 3 is caused to move in a cutting direction (shown by arrow B), the individual chain elements will move forwardly along the wear strips 7 on the cutter bar and will be captively held thereon by the inner action of the chain element legs and the wear strips. At the rearward end of the cutter bar 1, the chain elements will pass forwardly to the sprocket 2 and the link element legs will straddle the sprocket and be engaged by the transverse extensions 10. In this manner, the chain elements will be driven by the sprocket and will pass forwardly along the other edge of the cutter bar. Again, the chain elements will be captively held to the edge of the cutter bar by the inner action of their legs and th. wear strips 8. The chain will be guided about the forward end of the cutter bar by suitable means such as the shoe 51 or an idler sprocket, as described above.

FIG. 4 illustrates another embodiment of a cutter chain link member. The link member of FIG. 4 differs from the member 12 of FIGS. 2 and 3 primarily in that it is made up of three pieces rather than being an integral, one-piece unit. The link element of FIG. 4, generally indicated at 54 is made up of a body member 55 and side members 56 and 57. The body member 55 has a rounded forward end constituting a singlelink extension equivalent to the forward link extensions 14 and 14b of FIGS. 2 and 3. The body member 55 also has a bottom surface (not shown) equivalent to the bottom surface 20 in FIG. 2. A shank-receiving perforation 58 and a transverse perforation 59 may also be provided in the body member 55.

The side elements or members 56 and 57 are mirror images of each other. They have rearward extensions 60 and 61 equivalent to the space link extensions 15 and 16 in FIG. 3. The extended portions 60 and 61 are provided with coaxial perforations 62 and 63, respectively, for the receipt of a pintle. The space between the extended portions 60 and 61 is such as to receive the forward end of the body of an adjacent link member. Each of the side members 56 and 57 may have perforations (one of which is shown at 64) which are coaxial with and comprise extensions of the transverse perforation 59 in the body member 55, for the receipt of a resilient retaining means.

The side members 56 and 57 have downwardly depending portions 56a and 57a, respectively, which are equivalent to the legs 21 and 22 of the link member 12 of FIGS. 2, 3 and 7. The leg portions 56a and 57a have inwardly turned portions 65 and 66 equivalent to the inward extensions 23 and 24 of FIG. 7. The legs 56a and 57a are also provided with reliefs, three of which are shown at 67, 68 and 69. These reliefs are equivalent to those shown at 25 and 26 in FIG. 2. Finally, the side members 56 and 57 have rearward surfaces 70 and 71 equivalent to the surfaces 34 and 35 in FIGS. 2 and 3, as well as forward surfaces 72 and 73 equivalent to the forward surfaces 36 and 37 in FIGS. 2 and 3.

The functioning of the link member of FIG. 4 will in every way, be identical to the link members illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3. The side members 56 and 57 may be permanently or removably affixed to the body member 55 by any suitable means.

FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view similar to FIGS. 7 and 8. In FIG. 9, the body portion 4 of the cutter bar 1 is shown carrying a link member, generally indicated at 74. The link member has a body portion 75 and legs 76 and 77.

The link member 74 may be considered as being substantially identical to the embodiment shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, or

' the embodiment shown in FIG. 4. The difference lies primarily in the fact that the legs 76 and 77 do not have inwardly extending leg portions equivalent, for example, to those shown at 23 and 24 in FIGS. 7 and 8. For purposes of an exemplary showing, the peripheral edge of the cutter bar 1 is illustrated as not having wear strips. It will be understood by one skilled in the art that wear strips of any of the types described above could be applied in the same manner shown in FIGS. 7, 8 and 10.

FIG. 11 is a perspective view illustrating another embodiment of a cutter chain of the present invention. A cutter-bitcarrying link member is generally indicated at 78. The link member 78 has a body portion 79, a pair of legs 80 and 81 having inwardly turned portions 82 and 83 respectively. The forward surfaces of the legs are relieved as at 84 and 85. The rearward surfaces of the legs are similarly relieved (one such relief shown at 86).

Again, while the link member 78 may be adapted to carry any of the above-discussed types of cutter bits or cutter bit adapted for purposes of an exemplary showing the link is illustrated as having a shank-receiving perforation 87 and a transverse perforation 88 for the receipt of a resilient retaining means. As thus far described, the embodiment of FIG. 11 is generally similar to that of FIGS. 2 and 3. The primary difference lies in the fact that the link member 78 carries a pair of spaced link extensions at both ends. The forward link extensions are illustrated at 89 and 90, while the rearward extensions are shown at 91 and 92. The forward extensions have coaxial perforations, one of which is shown at 93. The rearward extensions have coaxial perforations 94 and 95. It will be understood that the link member 78 could be a one-piece structure or could be made up of a number of pieces of the same manner set forth with respect to FIG. 4.

Adjacent bit-carrying link s 7 8 are adapted to be joined by single-link members, one of which is generally indicated at 96. The single-link member has perforations at each end (one of which is shown at 97). The ends of the single-link member 96 are adapted to nest between the spaced pairs of link extensions on adjacent bit-carrying link members and to be joined thereto by pintle means passing through the coaxial perforations in the space-link extensions and the perforations in the ends of the single-link members. An exemplary pintle is shown at 93a.

The above-described embodiment has several advantages. For example, when compared to the embodiment of FIGS. 2 and 3, the cutter chain of FIG. 11 will be seen to have twice as many joints. Thus, it is more flexible and the pintles will remain nearer the peripheral edge of the guide means at the forward end of the cutter bar as the chain passes thereabout.

Forces are at play in the embodiment of FIGS. 2 and 3 which will tend to make the chain kick but these are compensated for by the arrangement of the chain members. For example, if the chain of FIG. 2 is moved in the direction indicated by arrow C, the forward end of the link member 12 will tend to rise in the direction of arrow D, while the rearward end will tend to lower in the direction of arrow E. However, at the same time, the rearward end of link member 12a will tend to lower in the direction of arrow F while the forward end of link member 12b will tend to rise in the direction of arrow G. Thus, the opposite forces indicated by arrows F and D and arrows E and G will tend to cancel each other and reduce the amount of kick displayed by the embodiment of FIG. 2. In any of the em bodiments of the present invention wherein the cutter chain includes single-link members of the type shown at 96 in FIG. 11, the chains will be more flexible and the pintles will ride nearer the peripheral edge of the forward guide means of the cutter bar.

FIGS. 12 and 13 illustrate yet another embodiment of the cutter bar-cutter chain of the present invention. In this embodiment, three identical links are illustrated at 98, 99 and 100. Each link member has a single forward extension 98a, 99a and 100a. Similarly, each link member has a pair of spaced link extensions one each of which is shown at 93b, 99b and 10017. The various links are joined by pintle means 101, 102 and 103.

As thus far described, the link members 98, 99 and 100 are substantially similar to the link members 12, 12a and 12b of FIG. 2. Again the link members may carry any suitable type of cutter bit or adapter and retaining means (not shown).

The cutter bar 104 may be of any suitable construction and has about its peripheral edges a channel having an inverted T- shaped cross section. It will be understood by one skilled in the art that the channel could have a U-shaped cross section which could be modified to a T-shaped cross section by the placement of wear strips along the channel sides. One such wear strip is indicated in dotted lines at 106 in FIG. 13. Similarly, the bottom of the channel could be extended and provided with a wear strip, as indicated in dotted lines at 107.

The link members 98, 99 and I differ from those of FIGS. 2 and 3 primarily in that each is provided with a single leg (108, 109 and 1 rather than a pair of legs as shown in FIG. 2. Referring to FIG. 13, it will be noted that the leg 108 has an inverted T-shaped configuration and is located centrally of the body of the link member 98. Thus, the configuration of the leg 108 and the configuration of the channel 105 are such as to slidably but captively maintain the link element 98 in proper position with respect to the peripheral edges of the cutter bar 104. The other legs I09 and 110 are similarly configured and similarly positioned on the link members 99 and 100, respectively.

The forward and rearward edges of the legs I08, 109 and 110 are relieved as at 10811-1081, I09a-ll09b, and 11011-1 10b. These edges are adjusted to be engaged by sprocket means located in association with the rearward end of the cutter bar. When a chain of the type shown in FIGS. 12 and 13 is used, the forward end of the cutter bar will be provided with suitable guide means as for example a shoe generally similar to that shown in FIG. 10, but having a matching channel of inverted T-shaped cross section. When such a shoe is used, FIG. 13 could also be considered a cross-sectional view through the peripheral edge portion of the shoe.

In the embodiment of FIG. 12, it would be within the scope of the invention to configure the double-link extensions 98b, 99b and 10Gb in the same manner shown with respect to the double-link extensions in FIG. 2, to rigidify the chain during its straight flights. Similarly, the forward faces of link members 98, 99 and 100 could be configured as shown in FIG. 1.

In like manner, it would be within the scope of the invention to provide each of the link members 98, 99 and 100 with pairs of spaced link extensions at both ends, as described with respect to FIG. II. In such an instance, additional single-link members would be required.

This is illustrated in FIG. I4. A cutting-tool-carrying link member is generally shown at 111 having a body portion 112, forward link extensions 113 and 114, and rearward link extensions 115 and I16. The link member 112 is provided with a single leg 117 similar to the legs 108, 109 and 110 of FIG. 12. A single-link member is illustrated at 118, joined to the link member 1 11 by a pintle 119.

Suitable sprockets for driving the chains of FIGS. 12-14 are shown at 150 and 152 in FIGS. 18 and 19.

FIGS. 15 and 16 illustrate yet another embodiment of the cutter chain of the present invention. A conventional drive sprocket is generally indicated at 120. The sprocket has a plurality of spaced teeth 121 with intermediate peripheral edge portions 122 extending therebetween.

In FIG. 15, three identical link members 123-425 are shown passing about the sprocket I20. For purposes of an exemplary showing, FIG. 16 comprises a perspective view of link 124.

The link members of this embodiment are generally similar to those shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. The link 124 has a body portion 125 with a single-link extension 126 at its forward end and a pair of spaced link extensions I27 and 128 at its rearward end. The link extension 126 has a pintle-receiving perforation 126a. Similarly the link extensions 127 and I28 have coaxial pintle-receiving perforations I27a and 128a. By virtue of this construction, the link elements l23-l25 can be joined together by pintle means 129 and 130. Again, the pintle means 129 and 130 may be freely rotatable in their respective pintle perforations and may extend beyond the outside surfaces of the spaced link extension with means at their ends for holding the pintles in place.

The body 125 of the link member 124 will have means (not shown) for mounting a cutting tool of any suitable type.

The link member body 125 also has a pair of spaced legs I31 and 132 substantially similar to the spaced legs illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2. It is within the scope of the invention to provide the legs I31 and 132 with inturned portions, one of which is illustrated at I33 in FIG. 15. These inturned leg portions will serve the same purpose as described with respect to the leg portions 23 and 24 in FIGS. 7 and 8.

The rearward edges of the spaced pair of link extensions 127 and 128 may be planar as at 127b and 128b. The forward surfaces of the body 125 will also be planar as at 134 and 135. The forward surfaces will also have a concave portion, one of which is shown at 136. In this way, adjacent link members will be free to pivot about their respective pintles as they pass around the sprocket 120, but will be stabilized during their straight flights by the interaction of the rear edges of the spaced pair of link extensions of one link member and the straight portions of the forward edges of the adjacent link member. This interaction is similar to that described with respect to FIGS. I and 2.

The primary difference between the embodiment of FIGS. l5 and I6 and the embodiment of FIGS. I and 2 lies in the fact that the rear surface I250 of the body portion 125 is spaced by a greater distance from the forward link extension of the adjacent link member. This permits entrance therebetween of a sprocket tooth 121, as illustrated in FIG. 15. The sprocket tooth may thus engage the surface 125a and drive the link member in a cutting direction. The bottom surfaces of the forward link extension 126 and the body 125 are supported on a peripheral edge portion 122 of the sprocket 120.

In all of the embodiments thus far described, it will be noted that the pintle means are located beyond the peripheral edges of the cutter bar. Thus, in all of the embodiments the ends of the pintle means are free to extend beyond the sides of the link members they join and thus the pintle means may be held in place by any of the various means described with respect to FIGS. 2, 3, and 6. It will be immediately evident that the distance between the point of contact between the tip of the cutter bit carried by the link members and the material being cut (i.e. the point of applied force) and the line of force passing through the pintles (i.e. the driving force) has been greatly reduced in each embodiment. All of the assemblies thus far described will be characterized by improved performance and longer service life.

FIG. 17 illustrates a modification of the cutter chain link elements which may be applied to any of the previously described embodiments.

The Figure illustrates two chain link elements 137 and 138. The link element 137 may have any suitable type of shankreceiving perforation as at 139. The link element may also have any of the leg means (not shown) described with respect to the previous embodiments.

A forward link extension is shown at 140 and a pair of rearward link extensions is illustrated at 141 and 142. The link extensions 140-142 are suitably perforated to accommodate pintle means.

The link element 138 is identical to link element 137 and has a forward extension 143, rearward extensions 144 and 145 and a shank-receiving perforation 146.

In the structure of FIG. 17, it will be noted that the rearward extensions 141-142 and 144-145 are suitably spaced to receive therebetween the forward extension of an adjacent link member. This forward extension 143 is illustrated as being positioned between rearward extensions 141 and 142. A pintle 147 passes through coaxial perforations in link extensions 141, 142 and 143 effectively joining link elements 137 and 138. In addition, however, the rearward extensions 141-142 and 144-145 are spaced inwardly on the sides of their respective link elements 137 and 138. This enables the ends of pintle 147 to extend beyond the outside surfaces of extensions 141 and 142 while at the same time being protected by the body portions of the link elements 137 and 138. Again, the pintle 147 may be freely rotatable and may be held in place by any suitable means such as, for example, any of those taught with respect to FIGS. 2, 3, 5 and 6. For purposes of illustration, roll pins 30 are shown in FIG. 17.

FIG. is a fragmentary cross-sectional view similar to FIG. 7 and illustrates an advantage of the present invention. The cutter bar and wear strip members are the same as those in FIG. 7 and like parts have been given like index numerals. For purposes of an exemplary illustration, a link member 153, similar to the link members 137 and 138 of FIG. 17, is shown mounted on the cutter bar. The link member 153 has leg portions 154 and 155 engaging and straddling the wear strips 7a and 7b. The link member has a forward extension 156 carrying a pintle 157. Rearward extensions 158 and 159 of an adjacent link member are shown in cross section.

The structure of the present invention enables the provision of a link member carrying two cutter bits in extreme cutting positions, substantially normal to the cutter bar. Bits 160 and 161 are shown in these positions. The axes of the bits are coplanar. It will be understood by one skilled in the art that the link member 153 will be provided with two transverse shank-receiving perforations, located one behind the other.

Heretofore, when bits have been placed in these extreme positions, the block or link member carrying them has been subjected to particularly severe wear and has imparted severe wear to the cutter bar. This is true because the bits, by virtue of their positions, demonstrate both twist and kick.

In accordance with the present invention, however, it is possible to locate the axes of the bits and 161 in substantially the same plane as the axis of the pintle 157. The tendency for the block to twist is greatly reduced by virtue of the fact that the bits 160 and 161 are oppositely disposed. The tendency for kick is substantially eliminated by virtue of the fact that the applied force (i.e., the driving force on the chain) passes through the axes of the bits and the axis of the pintle and is in line with the force applied to the bits by the material being cut. Any of the link structures of the present invention may be substituted for the one shown in FIG. 20 and will be characterized by the same advantages.

Modifications may be made in the invention without departing from the spirit of it.

The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defied as follows:

1. A cutter bar, cutter chain and sprocket assembly for a mining machine and the like wherein said cutter bar comprises an elongated member having longitudinal edge portions, a chain-driving sprocket in association with one end of said cutter bar and a chain guide means affixed to the other end of said cutter bar, an endless cutter chain extending along and supported by said longitudinal edge portions and extending about and supported by said sprocket and said guide means, said cutter chain comprising a plurality of link members some at least of which carry cutting tools, certain ones at least of said link members each having a body and leg means projecting from said body, said leg means engaging said longitudinal edge portions and said guide means, said link members being joined by pintles, said link members and said pintles being positioned beyond said longitudinal edge portions of said cutter bar and beyond the peripheral edges of said guide means, and engagement surfaces on some ofsaid link members to be drivingly engaged by said sprocket.

2. The structure claimed in claim 1 wherein each of said link members which carries a cutting tool has said body, said body being adapted to mount a cutting tool, said body having a single-link extension at one end and a pair of spaced link extensions at the other end, said single-link extension having a transverse perforation therethrough, said pair of link extensions having coaxial transverse perforations therethrough, the single-link extension of each of said link members being adapted to be received between the spaced pair of link extensions of an adjacent link member with their respective perforations in alignment, and pintles passing through said aligned perforations of adjacent link members to pivotally connect said adjacent link members.

3. The structure claimed in claim 1 wherein said cutter chain comprises a plurality of cutting-tool-carrying link members connected together by alternate single-link members, each of said cutting-tool-carrying link members having a body portion with a pair of spaced link extensions at both ends, the spaced link extensions of each pair having coaxial transverse perforations therethrough, said single-link members each having a transverse perforation at both ends thereof, the ends of each single-link member being adapted to be received between a pair of spaced link extensions of two adjacent cutting-tool-carrying link members with their respective transverse perforations being in alignment, said pintles passing through said aligned perforations.

4. The structure claimed in claim 1 wherein said leg means comprises a leg of inverted T-shaped cross section, said cutter bar having channels in its longitudinal edge portions, each of said channels having an channels having an inverted T-shaped cross section, said legs of said link members having a sliding fit in said channels.

5. The structure claimed in claim 1 wherein said leg means comprises a leg of inverted T-shaped cross section, said cutter bar having channels in its longitudinal edge portions, each of said channels having a U-shaped cross section, wear strips affixed to the sidewalls of said channels giving said channels inverted T-shaped cross sections, said legs of said link members having a sliding fit in said channels equipped with said wear strips.

6. The structure claimed in claim 1 wherein said leg means comprises a pair of spaced legs, said pairs of spaced legs being configured to straddle and slidably engage said longitudinal edge portions of said cutter bar.

7. The structure claimed in claim 2 wherein said pintles are freely rotatable in their respective aligned perforations, end portions of each of said pintles extending beyond the exterior surfaces of the spaced pair of link extensions through which it passes, means in association with said end portions of said pintles for maintaining said pintles in said aligned perforations through which they pass.

8. The structure claimed in claim 2 wherein said leg means comprises a pair of spaced legs, said pair of spaced legs being configured to straddle and slidably engage said longitudinal edge portions of said cutter bar, said drive sprocket having a peripheral edge with a plurality of spaced teeth, each of said link members adapted to pass about said sprocket with its pair of legs stradling said peripheral edge of said sprocket between said teeth, and said engagement surfaces comprising the rear surfaces of the link member body portions which are engaged by one of said teeth, said last-mentioned tooth being located between said pair of link extensions on said link member body portion ahead of the single-link extension of the adjacent link member.

9. The structure claimed in claim 3 wherein said pintles are freely rotatable in their respective aligned perforations, end portions of each of said pintles extending beyond the exterior surfaces of the spaced pair of link extensions through which it passes, means in association with said end portions of said pintles for maintaining said pintles in said aligned perforations through which they pass.

10. The structure claimed in claim 4 wherein said guide means comprises a member having a peripheral edge a portion at least of which is substantially semicircular, said peripheral edge having a channel therein of inverted T-shaped cross section comprising a continuation of said channels in said cutter bar, said legs of said link members having a sliding fit in said guide means channel.

11. The structure claimed in claim 5 wherein said guide means comprises a member having a peripheral edge a portion at least of which is substantially semicircular, said peripheral edge having a channel therein of U-shaped cross section, wear strips affixed to the sidewalls of said guide means channel giving said channel an inverted T-shaped cross section, said guide means channel and said guide means wear strips comprising a continuation of said channels and wear strips of said cutter bar, said legs of said link members having a sliding fit in said guide means channel equipped with said guide means wear strips.

12. The structure claimed in claim 6 wherein said cutter bar has wear strip means along both sides of each of said longitudinal edge portions, the free ends of each-of said pairs of link member legs being inturned toward each other, said pairs of spaced legs being configured to straddle said wear strip means and to be slidably hooked thereabout.

13. The structure claimed in claim 6 wherein said drive sprocket comprises a disk like body having two faces and a peripheral edge, said sprocket having a plurality of lugs on at least one of said faces near said peripheral edge and extending transversely thereof, said cutter chain passing about said sprocket with said link member legs straddling the peripheral portion of said sprocket body, said engagement surfaces being located on said legs and engaged by said lugs.

14. The structure claimed in claim 6 wherein said guide means comprises a member having a peripheral edge a portion at least of which is substantially semicircular, said peripheral edge comprising a continuation of said longitudinal edge portions of said cutter bar, said pairs of link member legs being configured to straddle and engage said peripheral edge of said guide means.

15. The structure claimed in claim 6 wherein said guide means comprises an idler sprocket affixed to the forward end of said cutter bar, said sprocket comprising a body portion having two faces and a peripheral edge, said sprocket having a plurality of lugs on at least one of its said faces near said peripheral edge, said cutter chain passing about said sprocket with said link member legs straddling the peripheral portion of said sprocket body and located between adjacent ones of said lugs, said engagement surfaces being located on said legs and engaged by said lugs.

16. The structure claimed in claim 12 wherein said guide means comprises a member having a peripheral edge a portion at leastof which is substantially semicircular, said peripheral edge of said guide means comprising a continuation of the longitudinal edge portions of said cutter bar, said peripheral edge of said guide means having wear strip means on both sides thereof comprising continuations of said wear strips on said cutter bar, said pairs of link member legs being configured to straddle said wear strip means on said guide means and to be slidably hooked thereabout.

17. A sprocket for engaging the cutter chain of a mining machine or the like, comprising a rotatable disk like body havingtwo faces and a peripheral edge, said sprocket having a plurality of lugs on at least one of said faces near said peripheral edge and extending transversely thereof.

18. A cutter bar for a mining machine and the like comprising an elongated member having a top and a bottom surface and longitudinal edge surfaces, each of said longitudinal edge surfaces being planar, normal to said top and bottom surfaces and extending from said top to said bottom surface.

19. The structure claimed in claim 18 including wear strips affixed to said top and bottom surfaces adjacent said longitudinal edge surfaces.

20. A link member for a cutter chain and the like comprising a body portion adapted to mount a cutting tool, said body having a single-link extension at one end and a pair of spaced link extensions at the other end, said single-link extension having a transverse perforation therethrough, said pair of link extensions having coaxial transverse perforations therethrough, said single-link extension and said pair of link extensions being so configured that the single-link extension of one such link element may be received between the pair of link extensions of another such link element with said perforations in said single and said pair of link extensions being coaxial, said body portion having at least one leg projecting therefrom adapted to slidably engage the longitudinal edge portions of a cutter bar.

21. The structure claimed in claim 20 wherein said body portion has a leg of inverted T-shaped cross section adapted to slidably engage channels of inverted T-shaped cross section in the longitudinal edge portions of a cutter boar.

22. The structure claimed in claim 20 wherein said body portion has a pair of spaced legs extending therefrom, said pair of spaced legs being configured to straddle and slidably engage the longitudinal edge portions of a cutter bar.

23. The structure claimed in claim 22 wherein said pair of spaced link extensions are of sufficient length to permit the tooth of a sprocket to enter therebetween and engage the rear surface of said body portion ahead of the single link extension of the adjacent link member.

24. The structure claimed in claim 22 wherein the free ends of said spaced legs are turned inwardly, and said inturned ends adapted to be slidably hooked about wear strips on the longitudinal edge portions of a cutter bar.

25. A link member for a cutter chain and the like comprising a body portion having a pair of spaced link extensions at both ends, the spaced link extensions of each pair having coaxial transverse perforations therethrough, said link member adapted to be connected to a similar link member by a single-link member having perforated ends adapted to be received between adjacent pairs of spaced link extensions with said perforations in said nested parts being coaxial, said body portion of said link member having at least one leg adapted to slidably engage the longitudinal edge portions of a cutter bar.

26. The structure claimed in claim 25 wherein said body portion has a leg of inverted T-shaped cross section adapted to slidably engage channels of inverted T-shaped cross section in the longitudinal edge portions of a cutter bar.

27. The structure claimed in claim 25 wherein said body portion has a pair of spaced legs extending therefrom, said pair of spaced legs being configured to straddle and slidably engage the longitudinal edge portions of a cutter bar.

28. A cutter chain for a mining machine and the like comprising a plurality of link members joined by pintles, each of said link members having a body adapted to mount a cutting tool, said body having a single-link extension at one end and a pair of spaced link extensions at the other end, said single-link extensions having a transverse perforation therethrough, said pair of link extensions having coaxial transverse perforations therethrough, the single-link extension of each of said link members being located between the spaced pair of link extensions of an adjacent link member with their respective perforations in alignment, said pintles passing through said aligned perforations of adjacent link members to pivotally connect said adjacent link members, the ends of said pintles extending beyond the exterior surfaces of said pairs of spaced link extensions, means in association with said ends of said pintles, to hold said pintles in place, each of said pintles being freely rotatable within its respective coaxial perforations, each of said link members having at least one leg projecting from said body and adapted to slidably engage the edge portions of a cutter bar.

29. The structure claimed in claim 28 wherein said pair of spaced link extensions of each link member is of sufficient length to permit entrance therebetween of one of the teeth of a drive sprocket and engagement by said tooth of the rear surface of the body portion of said link member ahead of the single-link extension of theadjacent link member.

30. A cutter chain for a mining machine and the like said cutter chain comprising a plurality of cutting-tool-carrying members connected together by alternate single-link members, each of said cutting-tool-carrying link members having a body portion with a pair of spaced link extensions at both ends, the spaced link extensions of each pair having coaxial transverse perforations therethrough, said single-link members each having a transverse perforation at both ends thereof, the ends of each single-link member being adapted to be received between a pair of double-link extensions of two adjacent cutting-tool-carrying link members with their respective transverse perforations being in alignment, said pintles passing through said aligned perforations and being freely rotatable therein, the ends of said pintles extending beyond the exterior surfaces of said pairs of spaced link extensions, means in association with said ends of said pintles to hold said pintles in place in their respective coaxial perforations, each of said cutting-tool-carrying link members having at least one leg to slidably engage the edge portions of a cutter bar.

31. A cutter chain for use with a cutter bar and sprocket assembly and the like, said cutter chain being comprised of a plurality of link members, pintles for joining adjacent link members, certain of said link members at least having leg means to engage a chain guide surface on the periphery of the cutter bar, and said pintles being located outside of the periphery of the cutter bar chain guide surface when said chain is mounted on the cutter bar, at least some of said link members being adapted to receive cutter bits which extend away from the chain guide surface.

32. The cutter chain of claim 31 in which said leg means comprises a pair of members adapted to straddle the chain guide surface.

33. The cutter chain of claim 31 in which said leg means comprises a generally T-shaped member adapted to engage a similarly shaped channel constituting a part of the chain guide surface.

34. The cutter chain of claim 31 in which said pintles are freely rotatable with respect to said link members.

35. The cutter chain of claim 31 in which the ends of said pintles extend beyond the surfaces of the link members they join. 36. The cutter chain ofclaim 31 in which said leg means are provided with surfaces to beengaged by the sprocket,

37. An assembly including a cutter bar, a chain and a sprocket, said chain being comprised of a plurality of link members, said cutter bar having a chain guide surface at its periphery, certain at least of said link members having leg means to engage said chain guide surface, pintles engaging adjacent link members, said pintles being located beyond the chain guide surface, some of said link members being adapted to receive cutter bits, and engagement surfaces on some of said link members to be engaged by said sprocket.

38. The assembly of claim 1 including chain guide surfaces on said longitudinal edge portions, said leg means engaging said chain guide surfaces, and said pintles being beyond said chain guide surfaces.

39. The assembly of claim 37 wherein said leg means comprises a depending member having at least one lateral extension, and said cutter bar chain guide surface comprising a channel in the longitudinal edge portion of said cutter bar, said channel having a configuration which conforms with said leg means, said leg means having a sliding fit in said channel.

40. The assembly of claim 39 including a chain guide means fixed at one end of said cutter bar, said chain guide means comprising a member having a peripheral edge a portion at least of which is substantially semicircular, said peripheral edge having a channel therein of a configuration which comprises a continuation of said channel in said cutter bar, said leg means also having a sliding fit in said chain guide means channel.

41. The sprocket of claim 17 in which said body is provided with a relief in said peripheral edge between each of said lugs.

42. The cutter bar of claim 18 in which said cutter bar is designed to receive a chain comprised of a plurality of link members joined by pintles, some at least of said link members having leg means to engage said cutter bar, the thickness of said cutter bar being less than the thickness of said link members.

43. The link member of claim 20 in which said pair of spaced link extensions is set inwardly from the lateral sides of said link member sufficient that a pintle may be passed through said coaxial perforations whereby to join said pair of link extensions with a said single-link extension with the ends of said pintle stopping short of or at the lateral sides of said link member.

44. The cutter chain of claim 31 in which said leg means comprises a depending member having at least one lateral extension, and said cutter bar chain guide surface comprising a channel on the periphery of said cutter bar, said channel having a configuration which conforms with said leg means, said leg means having a sliding fit in said channel.

45. The link member of claim 20 including a pair of cutting tools mounted on said body portion, the axes of said cutting tools being substantially coplanar and substantially normal to the cutter bar, said cutting tools being disposed about l from one another and each extending outwardly from said body portion, the axes of said cutting tools being in substantially the same plane as the said coaxial perforations in the said pair of spaced link extensions.

46. The assembly of claim 37 in which a said link member adapted to receive cutter bits is provided with a pair of cutter bits, the axes of said cutter bits being substantially coplanar and substantially normal to said cutter bar, said cutter bits being disposed about from one another and each extending outwardly from said link member, the axes of said cutter bits and the axes of said pintles being in substantially the same plane.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification299/84.1, 83/820, 474/156, 83/788
International ClassificationE21C25/28, E21C25/00
Cooperative ClassificationE21C25/28
European ClassificationE21C25/28