US 3709073 A
A lightweight wrench formed from a plurality of laminations welded together in assembly and having a body including a hollow elongated handle and heads at opposite ends of the handle. The hollow handle and a portion of each head are formed by two outer laminations. Each head is further defined by two additional inner laminations. The outer laminations are bent to impart strength to the handle and head portions of the wrench.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
11 3,709,073 Jan. 9, 1973 United States Patent 1 Kurtz 54] LAMINATED WRENCH Primary Examiner-Robert C. Riordon Assistant Examiner--R. V. Parker, Jr.
Att0mey-McCormick, Paulding & Huber e e r T s W 0 A6 0 5 In M MC m r m m i W r o. e e bn 0a RL n o t n e v n I 1 6 U 22 Filed: Jan. 25, 1971 211 Appl.No.: 109,195
' 57 ABSTRACT A l ight wrench formed from a plurality of Ightwe laminations welded together in assem 42 N NS 61 9 2 In I" am L C ML Um I] 21 55 [l  Field of Search......... 56]
.8l/ll9, 53 D, 179; 76/114 a portion of each head are formed by two outer References Cited laminations. Each head is further defined by two additional inner laminations. The outer laminations are bent to impart strength to the handle and head portions of the wrench.
.mx Hm mm S T. mm N m" E 2 T mm A mm P mm S mm m 2 en A n T am S BP D .E 75 I N H U N FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 10 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures 7,648 1887 GreatBritain..........................8l/l19 PATENTEDJAH 9 I975 INVENTOR. ROBERT L. KURTZ BY jg @VZQ ATTORNEYS LAMINATED WRENCH BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates in general to hand tools and deals more particularly with improved laminated wrenches.
Wrenches made in accordance with the present invention are or may be similar to outward appearance to conventional wrench structures of cast or forged construction. Heretofore, solid wrenches of laminated construction have been provided, however, such wrenches usually lack thestrength and durability of their cast or forged counterparts. The wrenches of the present invention comprise a plurality of laminations some of which are formed to impart increased strength and durability to the wrench structure while affording a substantial reduction in the quantity of the material required to make a given wrench. The resulting wrench structure is substantially lighter than a solid wrench cast or forged from comparable material. The unique manner in which the laminations of the present wrenches cooperate in assembly make possible the provision of wrenches having qualities of strength and durability comparable to solid wrench structures of the I prior art. The stamping and assemblying techniques employed make it possible to produce high quality wrenches at low cost from materials which are difficult to cast or forge.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In accordance with the present invention, an improved wrench is provided having a body including a hollow elongated handle and at least one'head. The
wrench comprises a plurality of laminations of sheet material which include-a pair of outer laminations and at least one inner lamination bonded together in assembly. At least one of the outer laminations has a concave cross-sectional configuration formed in the handle defining portion thereof and opening inwardly or toward the opposite outer lamination to define the hollow handle of the wrench. At least one of the outer laminations is bent to cooperate withsaid one inner lamination and the other outer lamination to .impart great strength to the head of the wrench.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS A wrench made in accordance with the present invention has a body which includes a hollow elongated handle and at least one head and is formed from a plurality of sheet material laminations which include a pairof outer laminations and at least one inner lamination.
Each of the outer laminations has a handle defining portion and at least one head defining portion. The handle defining portion of at least one of the outer laminations has a concave inwardly opening cross-sectional configuration and cooperates with the handle defining portion of the other outer lamination to form the hollow handle of the wrench. At least one of the outer laminations has its head defining portion bent to an outwardly off-set position relative to its handle defining portion. The inner lamination is received between the head defining portions of the outer laminations and cooperates therewith to further define the head.
' A typical wrench of open end type constructed in accordance with the present invention, and illustrated in FIGS. 14, is indicated generally by the numeral 10. The Wrench 10 has a unitary body which includes a hollow elongated handle '12 and heads 14 and 16 at opposite ends of the handle. The head 14 has a pair of fixed spaced apartjaw surfaces 18 and 20 for receiving a nut. or the like therebetween. The head l6 is similarly provided with fixed jaw surfaces 22 and 24 spaced to receive a nut of a different size. t
The wrench 10 comprises a plurality of laminations cut from sheet material and bonded together in assembly. Sheet metal, as for example, stainless steel or beryllium copper, is preferably used to make the laminations which are welded together as hereinafter described. More specifically, the laminations include a pair of outer laminations indicated generally at 26 and 28 and inner laminations 30, 30 and 32, 32. The outer lamination 26-includes an elongated handle-defining portion 34 and head defining portions 36 and 38. The other outer lamination 28 is adapted for mating engagement with the lamination 26 and has ahandle defining portion 40 and head defining portions 42 and 44. Each handle defining portion is formed to a concave inwardly opening cross-sectional configuration. More specifically, the handle defining portions 34 and 40 are each bent or formed to a generally arcuate inwardly opening cross-sectional configuration, as best shown in FIG. 2.
Each outer lamination has the head defining portions thereof outwardly offset from its handle defining portion. Considering the outer laminations in further detail and referring particularly to the lamination 26, as it appears inFIG. 2, the head defining portion 36 is bent outwardly from the body defining portion 34 along a line 46 which is preferably straight and which extends generally transversely of the longitudinal .axis of the, handle defining portion 34. The head defining portion 36 is bent inwardly along another line 48' which is preferably straight and generally parallel to the line 46. Theaforesaid bending operations form a connecting portion 50 intermediate the handle defining portion 34 and the head defining portion 36. The latter bending operation also defines at least two transversely spaced apart bearing points, such as indicated at 51in FIGS. 3
and 4, which are disposed at opposite ends of the bend. The connecting portion 50 has a bearing surface 52 thereon which is disposed generally transversely of the longitudinal axis of the handle defining portion 34. In a like manner, the head defining portion 38 is offset from the handle defining portion 34 by bending the lamination 26 along lines 54 and 56 to form another connecting portion 58 which also includes a transversely disposed bearing surface and at least two transversely spaced bearing points.
The other outer lamination 28 also has its head defining portions 42 and 44 outwardly offset from its handle defining portion 40 and includes connecting portions 60 and 62 which respectively define bearing surfaces 64 and 66 and bearing points such as indicated at 65, 65. Preferably, each of the outer laminations 26 and 28 is simultaneously cut and bent from sheet metal by a blanking and forming operation performed by a power press or the like machine.
The inner laminations 30, 30 are cut to complement the head defining portions 36 and 42 and may, if desired, be made from a material harder than the material of the outer laminations. Each lamination 30 has at least two transversely spaced part bearing points, such as indicated at 73, 73 in FIG. 3, for engaging corlamination 74 is bent to an outwardly offset position relative to the handle defining portion thereof to form a connecting portion 78 having to form aconnecting portion 78 having a bearing surface 80 thereon. It will be noted that the bearing surface 80 is disposed generally transversely of the longitudinal axis of the hand 12b.
' The other outer lamination 72, shown broken away,
responding bearing-points on an associated connecting portion. Each lamination 30 also has an abutment surface 68 formed thereon which is substantially planar, as shown, for engaging an associated bearing surface on one of the outer laminations. The inner laminations 32,
32 are cut to a profile which complements the head defining portions 38 and 44. Each lamination 32 also includes an abutment surface 70 and at least two transversely spaced apart bearing surfaces as previously described.
When the various laminations are assembled, the inner laminations 30, 30 and 32, 32 are respectively received between and engage the head defining portions of the outer laminations 26 and 28. The abutment surface on each inner lamination engages an associated bearing surface on one of the outer laminations. Thus, for example, the abutment surface 68 on the upper lamination 30 engages the bearing surface 52 on the outer lamination 26 along a generally straight line of contact. The-various laminations are bonded or welded together'at their peripheral edges as indicated at 62 in.
FIGS. 2 and 4. Preferably, the weld 71 extends along the entire outer peripheral edge of the various laminations. if desired, the weld may also extent into and around the jaw surfaces of both of the heads. The wrench 10 may be machined, ground, or polished, as may be required to produce a desired finish thereon.
, Wrenches and like torque-producing tools of other types may also be made in accordance with the present invention. Thus, for example, box wrenches and adjustable wrenches of various types may be constructed,
in the aforedescribed manner and such wrench forms are contemplated within the scope of the invention.
. Referring now'to FIG. 5, another wrench made in accordance with the present invention is indicated generally at 10b. The wrench 10b has a hollow handle 12b and heads 14b and 16b. The head 14b of a ratchet or movable jaw type such as illustrated in US. Pat. No. 2,797,600 issued to Beaver on July 2, 1957. The wrench is made from a plurality of laminations, as aforedescribed, which include a pair of outer laminations 72 and 74 and at least one inner lamination 76. At least one of the outer laminations is bent or formed in the manner generally aforedescribed to offset the head defining portion from the handle defining portion thereof. Thus, the head defining portion of the outer may also be formed in a like manner. 7
The inner lamination 76 has an abutment surface 82 which is preferably substantially planar for engaging the bearing surface 80 along a straight line of contact, as shown, and also includes an arcuate channel 84 for receiving anarcuately shaped movable insert 86. The inner lamination 76v and the head defining portions of the outer laminations 72 and 74 cooperate to define a fixed jaw 18b. The inserthas a movable jaw 20b which cooperates with the fixed jaw 18b to define a work receiving opening 88 of variable size therebetween. The head 14b is designed to operate with a ratchet action to apply torque in one direction. Thus, when a counterclockwise torque is applied to the wrench 10b, as it appears in FIG. 5, coengageable surfaces on the inner lamination 76 and on the insert 86 cooperate to retain the jaws 18b and 20b in holding engagement with a nut or the like. However, when torque is applied in an opposite or clockwise direction, the insert 86 moves against the bias of a spring 90 so that the insert 86 acts as a ratchet pawl to permit the wrench to move relative to the nut. For a more complete disclosure of wrenches of this type, reference maybe had to the aforementioned patent to Beaver.
lclaim: 1. A wrench having a body including a hollow elongated handle and a head and comprising a plurality of sheet metal laminations welded together in assembly at the preipheral edges thereof, said laminations including a pair of outer laminations and at leastone inner.
-tion defining a bearing surface disposed generally transversely of the longitudinal axis of said handle 1 defining portion, said head'defining portion of said one surface thereon engaging said bearing surface along-a straight line of contact.
2. A wrench having a body including a hollow elongated handle and a head and comprising aplurality'of laminations of sheet material bonded together in assembly, said laminations including a pair of outer laminations and at least one inner laminatiomeach of said outer laminations including-a handle defining porbeing received in assembly between said head defining portions of said outer laminations and engaging at least said one outer lamination to further define said head, said one inner lamination having at least two transversely spaced apart bearing points thereon, each of said bearing points on said one inner lamination engaging an associated bearing point on said connecting portion to prevent rotation of said one inner lamination relativeto said outer laminations.
3. A wrench as set forth in claim 2 wherein said one inner lamination engages said connecting portion along a transversely extending non-arcuateline of contact and said bearing points are located on said line of contact.
4. A wrench as set forth in claim 3 wherein said sheet material is metal and said laminations are welded together in assembly at the peripheral edges thereof.
5. A wrench as set forth in claim 4 wherein the metal from which said one inner lamination is formed is substantially harder than the metal from which said pair of outer laminations are formed.
6. A wrench as set forth in claim 3 including an insert received between the head defining portions of said outer laminations, said one inner lamination having a fixed jaw thereon, said insert being movable relative to said one inner lamination and defining. a movable jaw, said fixed jaw and said movable jaw defining a work receiving opening of variable size therebe'tween.
7. A wrench as set forth in claim 3 wherein said sheet material is stainless steel.
8. A wrench as set forth in claim 3 wherein said sheet material is beryllium copper.
9. A wrench as set forth in claim 3 wherein said line of contact is a straight line.
10. A wrench as set forth in claim 3 wherein at least one of said outer laminations has a generally concave inwardly opening cross-sectional configuration.