US 3756274 A
A substantially prism-shaped connection element for construction of a base plate for pressure fluid devices such as valves, in which the element is formed with a plurality of channels and bores therethrough so that the valves carried by the base plate may be connected to supply of pressure fluid and to external utilization circuits without the use of piping. The channels and bores in each connecting element are arranged in such a manner that a plurality of connection elements may be connected into a base plate with the channels in the plurality of connecting elements communicating with each other while each of said connection elements may be arranged in a selected one of a plurality of positions to permit a maximum number of different base plates to be assembled from a minimum number of different elements.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Q m Unite States Patent 1 1 1111 3,756,274 Wolfgramm Sept. 4, 1973  CONNECTION ELEMENT FOR 3,384,114 4/1968 Hathaway et al. 137/561 R X B PLAT F R 3,504,704 4/1970 Beckett et alm ASE E 0 3,680,589 8/1972 Jeans et a]. 137/608  Inventor: Hans-Jurgen Wolfgramm, Nellingen, FOREIGN PATENTS B fAPPuCATlONS Germany 1,206,828 9 1970 Great Bntam 137/608 Assignee: Robert Bosch GmbH Stuttgart Primary ExaminerWilliam R. Cline Germany Att0rney-Michael S. Striker 22 Fil d: A r. 13 1972 1 e 57 V ABSTRACT  Appl 243782 A substantially prism-shaped connection element for construction of a base plate for pressure fluid devices  Foreign Application Priority Data such as valves, in which the element is formed with a Apr. 21 1971 Germany.........,......... P 21 19 224.5 Pluralhy channels and hmes thehethmugh that the valves carried by the base plate may be connected to 52 US. Cl. 137/561 R, 137/271 137/608, supply Of Pressure fluid and w external utilization 1 37/561 A cuits without the use of piping. The channels and bores 51 1m. (:1. F15C 4/00 in each wmlectins element are arranged in Such a  Field 61 Search 137/561 R 561 A manner that a plurality chhechh elements may be 137/608 connected into a base plate with the channels in the plurality of connecting elements communicating with 56] References Cited each other while each of said connection elements may be arranged in a selected one of a plurality of positions UNITED T T PATENTS to permit a maximum number of different base plates glckelsat i to be assembled from a minimum number of different aymon 3,654,960 4/1972 Kieman 137/271 x elements' 3,072,148 1/1963 Carls 137/561 R X 5 Claims, 12 Drawing Figures CONNECTION ELEMENT FOR CONSTRUCTION OF A BASE PLATE FOR HYDRAULIC DEVICES BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION In complex hydraulic arrangements in which a plurality of valves or similar fluid pressure operated devices have to be connected to a fluid supply line and to external utilization circuits, it is known in the art to mount such valves on a base plate and to construct the base plate from a plurality of block-shaped connection elements which are formed with channels and bores therethrough to be connected at the open ends to the valve passages, a pressure fluid feed line and external utilizatiori circuits so that the connection may be made without the use of piping.
It is also known in the art to form the channels and bores in the connecting blocks in such a manner that the connecting blocks may be assembled in various positions with each other to obtain in the base plate different combination of fluid passages therethrough.
Thus, the German allowed application No. 1,400,475 discloses a connecting block for the construction of hydraulic circuits withoutthe use of pipes, in which the connecting block is formed as a hexagonal block provided with radial bores therethrough, and in which the open ends on the outer faces of the block are arranged symmetrically with regard to a central axis of the latter. A plurality of such blocks may be arranged side-by-side to form a base plate therefrom. This arrangement permits to arrange each block in the base plate in only two different positions anddue to the many bores formed in each block the arrangement becomes complicated and relatively expensive.
Another arrangement is disclosed in the German utility patent No. 6,603,043 in which the base plate is formed by block-shaped connection elements, reversing elements and intermediate plates so that a base plate may be formed by a plurality of such elements and plates abutting against each other. The blocks and plates of this arrangement are formed with channels therethrough which are arranged symmetrically with regard to a single axis so that the fluid passage combinations obtainable with this arrangement are also limited.
A further arrangement of this type is disclosed in the British patent No. 1,206,828 in which a connection block is formed with seven passages therethrough the open ends of which. are arranged at opposite end faces of the block along a substantially I-I-shaped outline. In this arrangement the channel coordinated with the fluid supply line and the adjacent channels coordinated with the external utilization circuits are arranged on a straight line. While the open ends of the aforementioned channels'are arranged symmetrically with respect to two axes which are normal to each other, the arrangement disclosed in the British patent provides only for a rather limited variation of fluid circuits formed by a plurality of such connection elements. In addition, the great number of channels extending through each of the connecting blocks makes this arrangement complicated and expensive.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It is an object of the present invention to provide for a connection element for construction of a base plate for hydraulicdevices which avoids the disadvantages of such connection elements known in the art.
Iy is a further object of the present invention to provide for such a connection element which is simple in its construction and which permits to construct a base plate from a plurality of such connection elements arranged in different positions with respect to each other so that a maximum number of different base plates may be assembled from a minimum number of such connection elements.
With these and other objects in view, the connection element for pressure fluid devices mainly comprises a block having two opposite end faces and being formed with five channels extending from. one to the other of the end faces and having open ends on each of the end faces symmetrically arranged with. respect to two axes which are normal to each other, the open ends of the aforementioned channels being respectively arranged on each of the ends faces at the corners of a rectangle and the open end of the fifth channel being arranged at the center of the rectangle. The fifth channel being coordinated with a pressure fluid supply and at least some of the four channels being coordinated with external utilization circuits.
In this way each of the connection elements may be arranged in a base plate in four different mounting positions in which the position of the channels coordinated with the external utilization circuits will be changed. In this way, it is possible to provide a great number of variations in the fluid circuits within the base plate with a minimum of connection elements.
An especially advantageous arrangement is derived when two of the channels are coordinated with the external utilization circuits and when the open ends of these two channels are located at the corners of one of the longer sides of the rectangle.
The novel features which are considered as characteristic of the invention are set forth in particular in the appended claims. The invention itself, however, both as to its construction and its method of operation, together with additional objects and advantages thereof, will be best understood from the following description of specific embodiments when read in connection with the accompanying drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIGS. 1-4 are perspective views of aconnection element and respectively showing this connection element in four different mounting positions in which the connection element may be assembled with similar elements to a base plate;
FIGS. 5-8 are diagrammatic views respectively corresponding tov the different mountingpositions of the connection element shown in FIGS. 1-4; I
FIG. 9 is a perspective view of another connection element;
FIG. 10 is a diagrammatic view of the connection element shown in FIG..9;
FIG. I l is a side view of a part of a base plate formed by a plurality of connection elements as showh in the preceeding Figures; and
FIG. 12 is a diagrammatic view showing the fluid circuits provided in said part of said base plate by the plurality of connection elements.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring now to the drawing, and more specifically to FIG. 1 of the same, it will be seen that a connection element according to the present invention may comprise a substantially prism-shaped block having a pair of opposite planar end faces 12 and 13 and a pair of opposite mounting faces 31 and 37 extending between and substantially normal to the aforementioned end faces 12 and 13. The block 10 is formed with five channels 14-18' extending between the opposite end faces 12 and 13, substantially normal thereto. The channels l418 have respectively open ends 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18 at each of the end faces 12 and 13. The open ends of four of the channels, that is the open ends 15, 16, 17 and-18 at each of the end faces, are respectively located at the corners of an imaginary rectangle, whereas the open end 14 of the fifth channel 14 is located at the intersections of the diagonals of the aforementioned rectangle, that is at the centerof the rectangle, so that the open ends of the five channels at each of the end faces are arranged symmetrically with regard to two axes which are normal to each other.
The block 10 is further provided with four flanges 24, 25, 26 and 27 which respectively form extensions to opposite sides of the end faces 12 and 13 and which are respectively formed with fastening openings 20, 21, 22 and 23, through which bolts or similar connecting members may extend for connecting the block 10 in a base plate to other blocks of similar construction. The fastening openings 2023 are likewise arranged symmetrically with respect to the aforementioned two axes.
The mounting face 31 of the connection element 10 serves to mount a valve, not shown in FIG. 1, on the connection element. For this purpose, there are provided four tapped holes 36 extending from the mounting face 31 into the block 10 for fastening such a valve to the mounting face and there are further provided four connecting openings 32, 33, 34 and 35 to be aligned with corresponding ports of the valve. The opposite mounting face 37 is provided with two tapped connecting openings 38, 39 for connecting pipes, not shown in FIG. 1, for external utilization circuits to the block 10. I
As indicated in FIG. 1 and as also shown in the diagrammatic FIG. 5, the channel 14' which is to be connected to a pressure fluid feed line is connected by means of a cross bore with the opening 34 (valve connection P), the channel is connected through a cross bore with the opening 39 on the face 37, which opening 39 is coordinated with a first external utilization circuit and the channel 15' is also connected by a cross bore with the opening 33 (valve connection A), the channel 16 is connected with the opening 38 coordinated with the second external utilization circuit and likewise connected by means of a cross bore with opening 35 (valve connection B), while the channel 17 which is coordinated with a return circuit is connected by means of a cross bore with the opening 32 (valve connection R). The channel 18 is not connected by any cross bores to openings on either of the mounting faces, and this channel may serve when the connection element 10 is connected to similar elements as will be described later on in detail to have different functions.
FIG. 2 shows the connection element 10in a position turned through 180 about a vertical axis, and this position is the second mounting position which the element may have when connected to other similar elements. As shown in FIG. 2, the position of the holes 16, 18 and 15, 17 is reversed with respect to the position of these holes as shown in FIG. 1, that is while the holes 15 and 17 are on the left side of the block, as viewed in FIG. 1, they are on the right side of the block as viewed in FIG. 2. The corresponding symbol of the arrangement in the second position of the block 10 is shown in FIG. 6.
FIG. 3 shows the block 10 in a third mounting position which is obtained by turning the block from the position shown in FIG. 1 through about the axis of the channel 14 so that the mounting surface 31 for the connection of the valve faces downwardly and the second mounting surface 37 for connecting of the external utilization circuits faces upwardly. The position of the openings 15-18 on the end face 12 in the third position of the block 10 also differs from the position of these openings as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, as clearly evident from FIG. 3. FIG. 7 shows the corresponding symbol for the position of the block as shown in FIG. 3.
FIG. 4 shows the block 10 in a fourth mounting position which is obtained by turning the block 10 from the position as shown in FIG. 2 through 180 about the axis of the channel 14. The corresponding symbol as shown in FIG. 8.
It will be noted that in all four positions the respectively illustrated in FIGS. 1-4, the position of the central channel 14', which is to be connected to a pressure fluid feed line, remains the same, whereas the position of the channels 15 and 16 which are coordinated with the external utilization circuits, is changed.
The fact that the first mounting surface 31 to which the valve has to be connected faces in the positions as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 upwardly and in the positions as shown in FIGS. 3 and 4 downwardly is immaterial when such connection elements are combined with each other to form a base plate since in such a base plate it may sometimes be of advantage to mount some of the valves on the bottom surface of the base plate.
FIG. 9 shows a different element 40 to be connected to elements as shown in FIG. 1 into a base plate, which does not serve to carry valves or similar fluid operated devices, but which serves only to connect and to form fluid passages between two elements as shown in FIGS. 1-4. For this purpose, theelement 40 is provided, in the same manner as the element 10, with five channels 14'-18' therethrough (see also FIG. 10) having open ends 14-18 on the end face 12 and on the corresponding opposite end face, not shown in FIG. 9. The open ends 14-18 are arranged in exactly the same pattern as shown in FIG. 1, that is the openings 15-18 are respectively arranged at comers of a rectangle, whereas the opening 14 is arranged in the center of this rectangle. The block 14 is also provided with four flanges formed with fastening openings 21-23 to be aligned with the corresponding openings shown in FIG. 1. As shown in FIG. 10, the block 40 is provided with at least one cross bore which may for instance extend between the channels 14 and 15 or between any other two channels.
FIG. 1 1 schematically illustrates a part of a base plate formed from a block 10, a block 40' and a block 10'. These blocks abut with the end faces thereof against each other and are held in abutting arrangement by bolts 41 which pass through the openings 21-23 formed in the flanges of the blocks- The block 10 is mounted in the base plate in the position as illustrated in FIG. 1, block 40' corresponds to block 40 illustrated at FIG. 9, but as evident from the diagrammatic showing of FIG. 12, the block 40 is formed with a cross bore which extends between the channels 15 and 17'. The block is similar to the block 10 but is mounted in the position as illustrated in FIG. 2 as is evident from FIG. 12. FIGS. 11 and 12 schematically also show two different valves 45 and 46 mounted on the upper mounting face of the blocks 10 and 10'. Depending on the type of valve used, the connection of the various channels with the ports of the valve may be made as for instance schematically illustrated in FIG. 12 in which the channel 16' is connected to the port B of the valve 45' and the external utilization circuit 43, the channel 15' is connected to the port A of the valve and the external utilization circuit 44, the channel 14- is connected to the port P of the valve and to a fluid feed line (not shown), and the channel 17 is connected to the port R of the valve. In the block 40 the cross bore is shown to connect the channels 14 and 17' and in the block 10' the channel 14' is connected to the port P of the valve 46. The channel 16' is connected to the port 8 of the valve 46, and to the external utilization circuit 43' and the channel 15' is connected to the port A and to the other external utilization circuit 44'. The channel 17' is connected to the port R in the valve 46. In the blocks 10 and 10 are arranged plugs 42 to provide suitable connections. Evidently, each of the blocks 10 and 10' may be mounted in four different positions as described in connection with FIGS. 1-4 and likewise the block 40' may be mounted in four different positions so that a great number of different fluid passage variations may be obtained with the arrangement as shown in FIGS. 11 and 12.
The open ends of channels and cross bores which are not connected to piping or fluid pressure devices are closed by plugs in a manner well know in the art. It will be understood that each of the elements described above, or two or more together, may also find a useful application in other types of connection elements for pressure fluid devices differing from the types described above.
While the invention has been illustrated and described as embodied in a connnection element to be assembled in various mounting positions with similar connection elements to form a base plate for hydraulic devices, it is not intended to be limited to the details shown, since various modifications and structural changes may be made without departing in any way from the spirit of the present invention.
Without further analyses, the foregoing will so fully reveal the gist of the present invention that others can be applying current knowledge readily adapt it for various applications without omitting features that, from the standpoint of prior art, fairly constitute essential characteristics of the generic or specific aspects of this invention and, therefore, such adaptations should and are intended to be comprehended within the meaning and range of equivalence of the following claims.
What is claimed as newand desired to be protected by Letters Patent is set forth in the appended claims:
1. A connection element for pressure fluid devices comprising a substantially prism shaped block having two opposite substantially parallel end faces and two opposite mounting faces extending between and substantially normal to said end faces, said block being formed with five channels extending from one to the other of said end faces and having open endson each of said end faces symmetrically arranged with respect to two axes which are normal to each other, the open ends of four of said channels being arranged at each of said end faces at the corners of a rectangle and the open ends of the fifth channel being arranged at the center of the rectangle and adapted to be connected to a pressure fluid supply, said block being further provided with openings for fastening said block to another connection element and said fastening openings being arranged symmetrically with respect to said two axes; and including four cross bores having outer open ends located at one of said mounting faces for connection to a valve, the inner end of one of said four cross bores communicating with said fifth channel and the remaining three of the four cross bores communicating with three of the other channels of which two have open ends at one of the longer sides of said rectangle, and two further cross bores having outer ends at the other mounting face for connection to external utilization circuits and communicating at thp inner ends thereof with said two channels.
2. A connection element as defined in claim 1, wherein said block is provided with two pairs of flanges respectively projecting to opposite sides of said end faces, said fastening openings being provided in said flanges.
3. A base plate for pressure fluid devices comprising a plurality of connection elements, each of said connection elements comprising a prism-shaped block having a pair of end faces and being formed with five channels extending between said end faces, said channels having on each of said end faces open ends symmetrically arranged with respect to two axes which are normal to each other and the open ends of four of said channels being respectively located at each of said end faces at the corners of a rectangle and the open end of the fifth channel being located at the center of the rectangle, said plurality of connection elements being arranged abutting with said end faces thereof against each other and with said channels respectively aligned with each other, at least some of said prism shaped connecting elements having opposite muounting faces substantially normal to said end face and being formed with a plurality of cross bores each communicating at an inner end thereof with a respective one fo said channels, two of said cross bores having outer open ends located at one of said opposite mounting faces and the other of said cross bores having outer open ends located at the other of said mounting faces; external utilization circuits connected to the open ends of said two cross bores; valve means mounted on said other mounting face and communicating with said other cross bores; and a pressure fluid supply line connected to said fifth channel of one of said connecting elements.
4. A base plate as defined inclaim 3, and including connecting means connecting said blocks to each other for maintaining ,the end faces of adjacent blocks in abutting relationship.
5. A base plate as defined in claim 4, wherein each of said blocks is provided with fastening openings arranged symmetricallywith respect tosaid two axes, said connecting means comprising bolts extending through said fastening openings.