Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3682261 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 8, 1972
Filing dateAug 28, 1970
Priority dateAug 28, 1970
Publication numberUS 3682261 A, US 3682261A, US-A-3682261, US3682261 A, US3682261A
InventorsBird Michael J
Original AssigneeWestern Boring Equipment Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tunnel boring machine
US 3682261 A
Abstract
A tunnel boring machine has a carriage which slides along a track. The carriage includes a spindle for attachment to a boring auger, and a power supply which drives the spindle and also drives an hydraulic ram which moves the carriage along the track. A device for locking the ram to the track is provided, and additional track sections may be added and locked to the original track. The auger casing is attached to arms which extend forwardly from the spindle housing, and a winch assembly is used in conjunction with the spindle for retracting auger sections from the bored tunnel without moving the carriage.
Images(3)
Previous page
Next page
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Bird [451 Aug. 8, 1972 [73] Assignee: Western Boring Equipment Co.,

Westrnont, I11.

[22] Filed: Aug. 28, 1970 [21] Appl. No.: 67,861

[52] US. Cl. ..175/122, 173/147, 173/156, 173/160, 175/171, 299/56 [51] Int. Cl. ..E2lc l/l0, E21c 5/06 [58] Field of Search ..173/24, 147, 156, 160; 175/62, 175/122, 171; 6l/72.7; 299/55, 56; 238/179 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,232,360 2/ l 966 Dickenson ..175/62 2,588,068 3/1952 Williams et a] ..175/ 122 3,118,509 1/1964 Adams et a1. ..175/62 X 3,587,755 6/1971 Slusher ..175/122 X 3,107,741 10/1963 Adams et a1 ..61/72.7 X

2,948,520 8/1960 Densmore ..299/55 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 251,075 10/1947 Switzerland ..238/179 Primary Examiner-Emest R. Purser Attorney-Andrus, Sceales, Starke & Sawall ABSTRACT A tunnel boring machine has a carriage which slides along a track. The carriage includes a spindle for attachment to a boring auger, and a power supply which drives the spindle and also drives an hydraulic ram which moves the carriage along the track. A device for locking the ram to the track is provided, and additional track sections may be added and locked to the original track. The auger casing is attached to arms which extend forwardly from the spindle housing, and a winch assembly is used in conjunction with the spindle for retracting auger sections from the bored tunnel without moving the carriage.

7 Claim, 8 Drawing Figures PATENTEDAuc s m:

INVENTC DRL MICHAEL J. BIRD sum 3 or 3 Attorneys TUNNEL BORING MACHINE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a tunnel boring machine and more particularly to a machine for making relatively large horizontal bores in the earth. The machine is particularly usable in road construction, mining and the like.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The machine of the invention includes an assembly containing a power supply for driving the boring spindle and for operating an hydraulic rarn which moves the assembly along a track. The ram is located at the rear of the assembly and is selectively locked to the track for providing the desired relative movement. As the assembly moves forward during boring, additional track sections may be added, and they are connected by utilizationof the assembly. The boring spindle housing is provided with improved means for connecting an auger casing thereto. In addition, the machine includes a special winch assembly for use in retrieving auger sections after boring is completed.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The accompanying drawings illustrate the best mode presently contemplated by the inventor for carrying out the invention.

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a side elevation of a machine constructed in accordance with the invention;

FIG. 2 is a transverse section taken on line 2-2 of FIG. 1 and showing the ram locking means;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged perspective view of the track attachment mechanism, with parts broken away;

FIG. 4 is a transverse section taken generally on line 4-4 of FIG. 1, with parts removed;

FIG. 5 is a section taken on line 5-5 of FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is a side elevation of the machine, and showing the winch assembly in place;

FIG. 7 is a view taken on line 77 of FIG. 6; and

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of the winch assembly.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT As shown in the drawings, the device of the invention may be utilized in horizontally boring a tunnel 1 of relatively large diameter, and comprises generally a boring assembly 2 movable longitudinally in either direction along a sectional track assembly 3.

Track assembly 3 is shown as comprising a pair of longitudinally extending spaced parallel tracks 4 which are joined interrnediately, and also at their ends by a front cross-brace 5 and rear cross brace 6. Tracks 4 are adapted to support boring assembly 2 which includes a frame or carriage 7 which is slideably mounted on the tracks or which may roll therealong by means of rollers, not shown.

Carriage 7 carries the power supply for rotating and to operate a reciprocable hydraulic piston and ram unit 16 which is disposed beneath and extends rearwardly from carriage 7 between tracks 4.

Ram 16 provides the driving force for moving carriage 7 forward and rearward along track assembly 3. For this purpose, the outer rearward end of ram 16 is fixedly secured to a transverse assembly 17 which includes a top plate 18 and a pair of transverse plates 19 extending downwardly therefrom. Assembly 17 is also adapted to side along tracks 4.

In accordance with one aspect of the invention, locking means are provided to fix ram 16 and assembly 17 at a selected longitudinal position along track assembly 3, so that actuation of valve 13 will cause carriage 7 to move thereon. For this purpose, an interrupted rail 20 is secured to the inner walls of tracks 4. The interruptions or spaces 21 in rails 20 provide fore and aft abutrnents 22, 23. A transversely extending locking arm 24 is pivotally mounted, as at 25, to plates 19 and the outer arm end 26 is positioned so as to ride along the top of rail 20 or to enter a selected space 21. End 26 is weighted so that it will automatically drop by gravity into a space 21 when it reaches one. This can be prevented, or removal of end 26 from a space can be accomplished, by pressing downwardly on a vertical rod 27 which engages the opposite end of arm 24 to raise end 26.

When end 26 is in a space 21, actuation of valve 13 will cause end 26 to engage an abutment 22 or 23 and lock the ram in place.

In boring with the machine of the invention, an auger is secured to spindle 11, engine 9 operated, and valve 13 actuated to move carriage 7 forwardly toward tunnel I. At the same time, a non-rotatable cylindrical casing 28 surrounds auger 8 and is introduced into the tunnel. Heretofore, problems have arisen in attaching a casing to the carriage framework so that the casing was properly aligned. In accordance with another aspect of the present invention, carriage 7 supports a generally cylindrical housing 29 which is disposed concentrically about spindle 11. Housing 29 includes a forwardly extending annular edge portion 30 to which it would be difficult to attach a casing end. To solve this problem, a plurality of circumferentially spaced arms 31 are secured to edge portion 30 and extend forwardly therefrom. The generally planular inner faces of arms 31 receive the casing, which is secured to the arms in any suitable manner, as by bolts 32. The spaces between arms 31, together with outwardly tapered or flared arm end portions 33, greatly facilitate entry and alignment of a casing 28.

Housing 29 and arms 31 comprise a casing pusher assembly.

The tunnel length desired may be in excess of the length of a single section of track assembly 3 or auger 8. It is thus necessary to add further sections in order to complete the tunnel.

Another aspect of the invention therefore contemplates a unique system for attaching further sections of track assembly 3 forwardly of the initial assembly. The front end of each track 4 is provided with connector members 34 which form a recess 35 for receiving a tongue 36 which extends rearwardly from the rear of each track 4 on an assembly 3 which is suitably placed in front of the first such assembly.

The machine of the invention is constructed to properly join track assembly section so that carriage 7 may continue to bore forwardly. For this purpose, a coupler base 37 extends forwardly from the lower portion of spindle housing edge 30, and has a transverse slot 38 therein. A coupler plate 39 is manually placed in slot 38 so that the plate extends downwardly with its lower edge disposed forwardly of rear cross-brace 6 of the new track assembly to be added. If carriage 7 is then moved rearwardly, the new track assembly will be pulled back so that tongues 36 enter recesses 35 to couple the track assemblies together.

Means are provided to lock tongues 36 in recesses 35. For this purpose, connector members 34 include a vertical longitudinally extending plate 40 and a vertical transverse-plate 41 extending outwardly therefrom. A locking pin 42 is adapted to be placed through suitable aligned openings in plate 40, tongue 36 and, if desired track 4-to lock the members together. A rod-like handle 43 on the outer end of pin 42 fits into a vertical slot 44 in plate 41 and, when rotated, locks pin 42 in position so that it cannot accidently move outwardly.

Once a tunnel has been bored, and several auger and track sections have been utilized, it is necessary to remove the auger from the tunnel while leaving the easing therein. This could be accomplished by moving carriage 7 rearwardly until a joint between auger sections is exposed, removing the rearmost auger section, moving the carriage forwardly to the next auger section, connecting it thereto, and repeating the procedure.

The concept of the present invention substantially simplifies auger retraction and accomplishes the desired result without need for carriage movement. In accordance with this concept, casing 28 is detached from arms 31, and carriage 7 pulled back slightly. Then a winch assembly 45 is placed on a track assembly 3 just forwardly of and closely adjacent carriage 7. Winch assembly 45 includes rearwardly extending arm members 46 which are suitably connected to arms 31 on spindle housing 29. Assembly 45 also includes a winch drum 47 which is mounted on a longitudinal shaft 48 which is co-axial with spindle ll. Shaft 48 is mounted for free rotation in suitable'bearing supports 49. The rearward end of shaft 48 extends beyond its bearing support 49 and to closely adjacent the forwardly extending spindle shaft 50.

Means are provided to quickly and selectively connect or disconnect shafts 48 and 50. For this purpose, both shafts are non-circular, such as hexagonal, and a coupling sleeve 51 of hexagonal interior is adapted to be slideably mounted thereover. Shaft 48 is somewhat shorter then shaft 50, and sleeve 51 is about the length of the latter and fits thereover when the shafts are to be disconnected. Sliding of sleeve 51 forwardly will provide a driving connection between the shafis for the purpose of rotating winch drum 47. The shaft lengths and direction of sleeve sliding could be reversed without departing from the spirit of the invention.

A suitable cable 52 is wound of drum 47 and passes over a roller 53 and pulleys 54 for longitudinal extension toward an auger 8.

In operation, shafts 48 and 50 are disconnected and cable 52 manually pulled out for connection to the rearmost auger. The shafts are then connected by shifting sleeve 51, engine 9 operated to turn spindle ll,

which causes cable 52 to retract the complete auger.

When a joint 55 between auger sections is exposed, the

rearmost section is removed, shafts 48 and 50 are disconnected and cable 52 again pulled forwardly for attachment to the next auger section. And so on.

The machine of the invention has been found to pro vide a substantial advance in the art of tunnel boring.

Various modes of carrying out the invention are contemplated as being within the scope of the following claims particularly pointing out and distinctly claiming the subject matter which is regarded as the invention.

1 claim:

tion:

a. a section of track assembly including at least one track, b. a carriage mounted on said track assembly for forward and rearward longitudinal movementthereon,

c. a rotatable spindle disposed on said carriage and adapted to be connected to a section of boring auger,

d. a power source on said carriage,

e. a reciprocable drive member connected to said power source and extending longitudinally from said carriage,

f. a rail extending along the inner wall portion of said track, said rail being interrupted to provide at least one space,

g. and a transversely extending arm pivotally.

mounted to said drive member, said arm having an end weighted so that the end will ride along said rail during movement of said drive member and will drop by gravity into said space to lock the elements together so that actuation of said power source will cause said carriage to move'on said .1

track assembly.

2. The machine of claim v1 which includes: a vertically extending rod disposed to selectively and pivotally lower the end of said arm opposite said first-named end to unlock the elements. I

3. A tunnel boring machine comprising, in combination:

a. a section of track assembly,

b. a carriage mounted on said track assembly for forward and thereon, c. a rotatable spindle disposed on said carriage and rearward longitudinal movement adapted to be connected .to a section of boring for moving the latter in 1. a coupler member extending forwardly from said carriage, said coupler having a transverse slot therein,

2. and a plate removably extending downwardly through said slot for engagement with the said rear end of said second track assembly for pulling the latter toward said first-named track assembly when said carriage is moved rearwardly on the latter. 4. The machine of claim 3 which includes:

1. A tunnel boring machine comprising, in combina said section of track as-- a. a connector mounted on one end of one of said track assemblies, said connector having a recess therein,

b. a tongue mounted on the adjacent end of the other of said track assemblies,

c. said tongue entering said recess upon rearward carriage movement,

(1. a pin extendable through said connector and tongue to hold said tongue in place,

e. said connector having a slot therein,

f. and a handle extending from said pin and extendable into said slot for holding said pin in place.

5. A tunnel boring machine comprising, in combination:

a. a section of track assembly,

b. a carriage mounted on said track assembly for forward and rearward longitudinal movement thereon,

c. a rotatable spindle disposed on said carriage and adapted to be connected to a section of boring auger,

d. means on said carriage for moving the latter in either direction along said section of track assembly,

e. and means for retracting an auger from a bored tunnel without carriage movement, said retracting means comprising:

l. a winch drum on the forward portion of said track assembly for supporting an elongated cable which is adapted to be connected to an auger,

2. a normally freely rotatable shaft mounting said winch drum, said shaft extending co-axially to closely adjacent said spindle,

3. quick coupling means for selectively connecting or disconnecting said shaft and spindle,

4. and power means for rotating said spindle when it is connected to said shaft for rotating said drum to pull the cable and auger rearwardly.

6. The machine of claim 5:

a. in which said coupling means comprises a sleeve slideable between said drum shaft and a forward portion of said spindle,

b. said sleeve being about the same length as said forward portion.

7. A tunnel boring machine comprising, in combination:

a. a section of track assembly,

b. a carriage mounted on said track assembly for forward and rearward longitudinal movement thereon,

c. a rotatable spindle disposed on said carriage and adapted to be connected to a section of boring auger,

d. a generally cylindrical housing concentrically surrounding said spindle,

e. a plurality of circumferentially spaced arms extending forwardly from said housing for receiving a casing end portion,

f. means for securing a casing end portion to said arms,

g. power source means on said carriage,

h. a reciprocable drive member connected to said power source means and extending longitudinally fro said carria e, i. grawty operate means for selectively locking said drive member to said track assembly so that application of power from said power source means will move said carriage on said track assembly,

j. a coupler member extending forwardly from said housing, said coupler member having a slot therein,

k. a plate removably extending downwardly through said slot for engagement with the rear end of a second section of track assembly for pulling the latter toward said first-named assembly when said carriage is moved rearwardly on the latter,

1. means for lockingly connecting said assemblies together,

m. winch means including a cable-carrying winch drum and shaft mounted on a track assembly forwardly of said carriage, the cable being adapted for connection to an auger,

n. and quick coupling means for selectively connecting or disconnecting said shaft and spindle,

0. said power source means including means for rotatably driving said spindle when it is connected to said shaft for rotating said winch drum to pull the cable and auger rearwardly without carriage movement.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2588068 *Jan 9, 1948Mar 4, 1952Cons Edison Co New York IncDrilling apparatus
US2948520 *Sep 7, 1955Aug 9, 1960Joy Mfg CoAuger boring machine for mining coal
US3107741 *Mar 29, 1960Oct 22, 1963Salem Tool CoMachines for simultaneously drilling and inserting pipe lines
US3118509 *Jun 24, 1959Jan 21, 1964Salem Tool CoTrench drill
US3232360 *Nov 4, 1963Feb 1, 1966Mobile Drilling Co IncBore positioning method and apparatus
US3587755 *Aug 11, 1969Jun 28, 1971Slusher Emmet GEarth boring apparatus
CH251075A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3807509 *Feb 20, 1973Apr 30, 1974Allied Steel Tractor Prod IncAdvancement device for a horizontal earth boring machine
US3870110 *Mar 1, 1973Mar 11, 1975Richmond Mfg CoPower train for horizontal earth boring machine
US3870279 *Sep 11, 1972Mar 11, 1975Allied Steel Tractor Prod IncStepper carriage advancement system
US3871277 *Feb 25, 1974Mar 18, 1975Bolton Robert BenjaminTracked walking gear
US3886999 *May 20, 1974Jun 3, 1975Gen Motors CorpPortable earth boring machine
US4059163 *Aug 16, 1976Nov 22, 1977Caterpillar Tractor Co.Mine drilling apparatus and method
US4078617 *Mar 21, 1977Mar 14, 1978Cherrington Martin DPortable drill rig for boring underground inverted arcuate paths
US4538858 *Aug 13, 1984Sep 3, 1985Kilgour Jonathan RApparatus for drilling and inserting a horizontal pipe
US4553612 *Nov 9, 1983Nov 19, 1985Durham Marion EEarth boring machine
US4750571 *Oct 8, 1986Jun 14, 1988Geeting Marvin DScreen placement method and apparatus
US5778988 *Oct 27, 1994Jul 14, 1998Ilomaeki; ValtoDrilling apparatus
US5873421 *Aug 7, 1997Feb 23, 1999Assenza; AntonioTool for installing a pipeline under a structure
US6416134Sep 14, 2000Jul 9, 2002Brydet Development Corp.Underground auger system
US8424618Sep 10, 2009Apr 23, 2013Vermeer Manufacturing CompanyAuger boring machine
CN100422505CSep 16, 2002Oct 1, 2008杜加华Excavator for tunnel of subway
Classifications
U.S. Classification175/122, 175/171, 173/147, 173/160, 299/56, 173/156
International ClassificationE21B19/00, E21B7/20, E21B19/084, E21B19/086
Cooperative ClassificationE21B7/201, E21B19/084, E21B19/086
European ClassificationE21B7/20B, E21B19/086, E21B19/084