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Publication numberUS3766586 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 23, 1973
Filing dateMar 1, 1972
Priority dateMar 2, 1972
Publication numberUS 3766586 A, US 3766586A, US-A-3766586, US3766586 A, US3766586A
InventorsKrickovich E
Original AssigneeKrickovich E
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Snow removal and vacuum sweeper with slurry disposal
US 3766586 A
Abstract
A fluid containing insulated reservoir or tank is mounted on a vehicle chassis having an engine thereon, a hydraulic pressure means and a control cab. A roadway cleaning apparatus, comprising a forwardly open horizontally disposed substantially cylindrical screw conveyor surrounding housing, is pivotally mounted transversely of the forward end portion of the vehicle chassis for vertical pivoting movement about a horizontal axis. A discharge tube connects the central portion of the conveyor housing to the tank. Heat transfer means supported by the chassis extends into the tank for heating contained slurry and melting snow. An agitator within the tank forms a slurry of the materials contained by the tank.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1191 1111 3,766,586 Krickovich 1 Oct. 23, 1973 [54] SNOW REMOVAL AND VACUUM SWEEPER 3,304,632 2/1967 Kotlar et al 37/12 WITH SLURRY DISPOSAL 3,305,949 2/1967 Holley 37/24 I 3,309,798 3/1967 Devlin et al. 37/12 Inventor: Eli Krickovich, e 3,321,851 5/1967 Fisher 37/25 Witt, Iowa 52742 3,382,603 5/1968 Oberto 37/12 UX Filed Mar 1 1972 3,464,128 -9/l969 Krickovich 37/12 [21] Appl. No.: 231,292 Primary Examiner-Edward L. Roberts Related U.S.. Application Data [57] ABSTRACT [63] fgf gzgggsgg f ssgk izhigfi 2,1 Z P E A fluid containing insulated reservoir or tank is 8 i [581124 1971 almndonep mounted on a vehicle chassis having an engine thereon, a hydraulic pressure means and a control [52] US. Cl. 15/83, 15/340 37/12 A rmidway cleaning PP Cmprising a for- 37/24 57/43 wardly open horizontally disposed substantially cylin- 51 Int. Cl E0lh 1/04 E 0lh'6/00 screw sumunding musing, is P [58] Field of Search .l/828 6 ,'1 any mounted transvfrsely of h end Portion 1 L 340; 37/24 25 43 D 43 E, 1244 of the vehlcle chass1s for vertlcal plvotmg movement about a horizontal axis. A discharge tube connects the [56], References Cited central portion of the conveyor housing to the tank. Heat transfer means supported by the chassis extends UNITED STATES PATENTS into the tank for heating contained slurry and melting {s g snow. .An agitator within the tank forms a slurry of the us 2,893,377 7 1959 .Ianousek.. 37/43 E x mater'als cm'mmed by the tank 3,213,552 /1965 Vanvick 37/43 E 7 Qlaims, 21 Drawing Figures 59 I09 l l I:

56 92 I74 3 1| g t 1 l 1* r J18 1.6 104 18 r PATENTEUDBT 23 I975 SHEET 3 BF 6 FIG.4

III] Hll HlPlto L IHJ Ill-111111111111 1111 SNOW REMOVAL AND VACUUM SWEEPER WITH SLURRY DISPOSAL CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS The present invention is a continuation-in-part of two applications filed by me in the United States Patent Office on: Sept. 8, 1970, Ser. No. 70,335 and Feb. 24, 1971, Ser. No. 118,228, for Snow Remover And Sweeper With Slurry Disposal, both now abandoned.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The present invention relates to snowplows and more particularly to a snow removing and disposal apparatus which may also be used as a sweeper and vacuum cleaner for streets, roadways, walks, runways or the like.

In the removal of snow from steets and roadways as a result of snow storms it is present practice, generally, to employ a snowplow or in some instances graders which move the snow off the street into piles or rows which later must be picked up by a loader and disposed of by dump trucks. This type of operation is time consuming and expensive in man hours and necessary equipment and, furthermore, it is a comparatively slow process of snow removal.

Furthermore, such apparatus represents a considerable monetary investment and the snowplow normally remains idle or unused during the warm months of the year when other types of equipment, such as street sweepers, are normally used for cleaning dirt, trash,

etc. off streets and roadways.

It is desirable from an environmental viewpoint to provide an apparatus for removing and melting snow and for cleaning up and disposing of dust, dirt, leaves or papers and other items commonly known as trash by immersion and mixing with water requiring little or no heating for either operation.

Conventional street sweepers have a relatively small storage capacity and, therefore, similarly require the service of pickup and disposal units.

a This invention simplifies the above steps of removing and disposing of snow by providing a single mobile machine which picks up the snow and melts it in a relatively large 35 dump truck load capacity insulated tank which is periodically drained into a storm'sewer, or the like, thus eliminating the use of a loader and dump trucks as well as saving time and wear of such equip- US. Pat. Nos. 3,304,632 and 3,393,462 disclose vehicle mounted conveyor pickup type apparatus for snow removal and disposal.

The most pertinent prior patent is my US. Pat. No. 3,464,128 which discloses a screw conveyor snowplow communicating with a snowreceiving tank heated by burner means and including rotating agitators for mixing snow and water contained by the tank.

The principal distinction of this invention over my prior patent is that this screw conveyor comprises opposite cooperating screw conveyors for moving snow toward impeller blades aligned with a discharge tube connected, at one end, medially the length of the conveyors and communicating, at its other end, with a relatively large snow and refuse receiving tank disposed rearwardly of the conveyors. Further, the conveyor screws, disposed partially within and supported by a housing, are capable of being equipped with brushes for converting this apparatus to a cleaner or sweeper.

This invention is distinctive over my copending applications by including a vacuum means for more efficient roadway surface cleaning and modifying other components for improved results.

Heat transfer means, including a helical coil is placed within the snow and trash receiving tank, which liquifies snow received by the tank and/or raises the temperature of a slurry formed of other tank contained materials.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An insulated relatively large capacity tank is supported by a truck chassis rearwardly of an engine and control cab. A roadway cleaning apparatus, including longitudinally aligned oppositely disposed screw conveyors connected with impeller blades and supported by a cylindrical housing; is transversely mounted across the lower front end portion of the truck chassis for vertical pivoting movement toward and away from the surface of the earth. The housing is provided with a discharge tube extending upwardly and rearwardly toward the tank top. The impeller blades and the blades of the screw conveyors are provided with removable brush segments for cleaning roadway surfaces. A vacumm pump, mounted on the chassis, is connected by flexible tubing with the tank and suction nozzles mounted rearwardly of the sweeping brush containing housings. A heat transfer means supported by the truck chassis includes an antifreeze fluid containing coil extending into the tank in spaced relation with respect to its inner wall surface. Agitator blades within the tank churns snow and water contained by the tank and mixes dirt and debris with water contained by the tank to form a slurry when the apparatus is used as a sweeper. Most of the water and/or slurry is periodically drained from the tank by a drain valve located within the tank. The tank includes a sump portion similarly having a drain valve therein for draining the sump when the apparatus is idle.

The principal object of this invention is to provide a snow removing and melting apparatus mounted on a vehicle chassis which also may be used as a roadway sweeper and vacuum cleaner for streets or the like.

A BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of the apparatus;

FIG. 2 is a top view of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a front view of FIGS. 1 and 2;

FIG. 4 is a vertical cross-sectional view, to a larger scale, taken substantially along the line 4-4 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 5 is a horizontal cross-sectional view taken substantially along the line 5-5 of FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view taken substantially along the line 66 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view taken substantially along the line 7-7 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 8 is a side elevational view similar to FIG. 1 of another embodiment of the apparatus;

FIG. 9 is a top view of FIG. 8;

FIG. 10 is a front view of FIGS. 8 and 9;

FIG. 11 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view, to an enlarged scale, taken substantially along the line 11-11 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 12 is a fragmentary perspective view, to an enlarged scale, of the drain connector;

FIG. 13 is a side elevational view illustrating a sweeping and vacuuming embodiment of the apparatus;

FIG. 14 is a top view of FIG. 13',

FIG. 15 is a front view of FIGS. 13 and 14;

FIG. 16 is a fragmentary elevational view, partially in section, taken substantially along the line 16-16 of FIG. 14;

FIG. 17 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view taken substantially along the line 17-17 of FIG. 14;

FIG. 18 is a fragmentary exploded perspective view illustrating the manner of connecting brushes to the conveyor;

FIG. 19 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view taken substantially along the line 19-19 of FIG. 14;

FIG. 20 is a fragmentary perspective view of the con veyor housing supported brush shield; and,

FIG. 21 is a fragmentary perspective view illustrating the manner of connecting brushes to the respective end portions of the thrower blades.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Like characters of reference designate like parts in those figures of the drawings in which they occur.

In the drawings: 7

Referring more particularly to FIGS. 1 to 7, the reference numeral 10 indicates a substantially conventional truck chassis having an engine 12, a hydraulic pump and other conventional controls, not shown, and a control cab 14, mounted on and supported by the forward end portion of longitudinally extending vehicle frame members 16, in turn supported by wheels 18. Conveyor means 20 is mounted on the forward end of the chassis and connected with tank means 22, mounted on the chassis rearwardly of the cab, by tube means 24. The conveyor means 20 comprises a substantially cylindrical horizontal housing 26 having end closing members 28 and 29 (FIG. 3) and having a portion of its forwardly and downward arcuate wall removed to form a snow and trash admitting opening 30. A shaft 32 extends horizontally between and beyond the ends 28 and 29 and is journalled at its respective end portions by the respective end portion of a pairof arms 34. The other end portions of the arms 34 are respectively pivotally connected to the respective outwardly disposed end portion of a pair of horizontally aligned support shafts 36 and 37 transversely supported by the chassis so that the housing 26 may be vertically pivoted about the horizontal axis of the shafts 36 and 37 as presently explained.

A pair of hydraulic cylinders 38 are connected, respectively, to a pair of parallel braces 40 which project forwardly and upwardly in'rearward spaced relation with respect to the housing 26. The piston end of the cylinders 38 are respectively pivotally connected to a pair of spaced-apart ears 42 cooperatively secured to the upper surfaces of the housing 26 for raising and lowering the housing. Valve and tubing means, not shown, connected with the hydraulic system of the truck and the cylinders 38, are actuated by the operator in the control cab 14 for operating the cylinders 38 and raising and lowering the conveyor means 20. Oppositely acting screw conveyors 44, secured to the shaft 32, are each connected with impeller blades 46 radially connected to the shaft 32 medially the length of the housing. A shoe 48 extends longitudinally of the housing 26 and is connected to the lower limit of the housing wall by bolts 50. The shoe 48 is transversely curved on a radius complemental with the curvature of the wall 26 of the housing for the purposes of increasing the cylindrical wall area of the housing around the conveyors 44 when the conveyor means 20 is employed for removing snow. A plurality of forwardly extending sled-like runners 52 are transversely secured, in spaced relation, to the lower limit of the housing 26 for engaging the roadway or surface of the earth, indicated by the line 54, to prevent damaging the housing or shoe 48.

The tube means 24 comprises a lower tubular section 56 connected with the housing 26 around an opening 58 (FIG. 7) therein. The upwardly directed end portion of the lower tube 56 is telescopically received by the lower end portion of an inclined intermediate tube 59 which is in turn telescopically received by its upper end portion within the lower end portion of an inclined upper tube 60 which is pivotally connected, adjacent its upwardly disposed end, by a hinge 62 to the upper forward edge surface of the tank means 22 within a recess 63 formed therein. Flexible tubing 64 connects the upper end portion of the uppertube 60 to an elbow-like tube 66 communicating with the interior of the tank means 22.

The housing supporting shaft 37 forms a drive shaft for rotating the conveyors 44. The shaft 37 is drivably connected, at one end, by gears 68 to the engine 12 and is conventionally connected, at its other end, to one end of the conveyor shaft 32 such as by belt and pulley means, indicated by the dotted lines 70 (FIG. 1), and shielded by a guard 72. Obviously chain and sprocket means may be used in place of the belt and pulley means, if desired. Alternatively, a hydraulic motor 73 (FIGS. 8 and 9), supported by the arms 34 and connected with the conveyor shaft 32, may be used as a conveyor drive.

The tank means 22 includes a substantially rectangular tank 74 having a bottom wall characterized by a rearward horizontal surface 76 merging with the remainder of the bottom surface which is inclined downwardly or slopes toward the central left side of the vehicle and tank means, as viewed from the front, forming a sump 77 (FIG. 6). Thebottom wall is joined to a top wall 78 by opposing side walls 80 and forward and rearward end walls 82 and 84, respectively. The tank 74 is surrounded, in spaced relation, by a plurality of bottom, top, side and end wall panels 86 (FIGS. 1 and 2) secured to stud-like supports 88 extending across the respective bottom, top, side and end walls of the tank 74 to form a double walled tank having a space between the outer limits of the tank 74 and inner wall surfaces of the wall panels 86 which is preferably filled with heat and cold insulating material 90. A drain pipe or hose 92 extends through the rear wall 84 of the tank and is connected with a conventional drain valve 94, which may be a ball valve or wedge disk valve, for draining fluid out of the tank down to the level of the horizontal bottom portion 76. The drain opening of the valve 94, preferably positioned slightly above the inner surface of the tank bottom, insures that a sufficient quantity of water remains in the tank for dissolving snow added thereto when again placed in operation for dissolving such snoiv and preventing a piling up of the snow within the tank. The valve 94 may be manually opened by a control wheel 95 disposed rearwardly of the tank means 22 and connected with the valve 94 by vertical control rods 96 and 97 operated through right angle gears 98 and 100 mounted on the top of the tank means by a shaft 101. Alternatively, a reversible hydraulic motor 99, controlled from the cab 14, may be connected with the valve shaft 97 for opening and closih g'the valve 94 (FIGS. 8, 9 and 13). The sump 77 has a drain valve 102 therein connected with a drain tube section 103 terminating inwardly of the tank means outer wall to prevent freezing. Access to the control of the sump valve 102 and drain tube 103 is gained through an access door 104 (FIGS. 1 and 6) formed in an overlying outer wall panel of the tank means. A vent opening 105 (FIG. 11) is formed in the top of the tank and a manhole 106 (FIG. 4), similarly formed in the top of the tank, is closed by a lid or cover 107.

A heater I-I, mounted on the truck chassis forwardly of the tank means 22, is connected with piping 108 which extends into the tank 74 along its walls, in spaced relation with respect to its inner wall surface, in a helical fashion for approximately one-half the vertical height of the tank. The other end portion 109 of the piping extends through the forward wall 82 of the tank and is connected with the heater. The piping is filled with a liquid, not shown, preferably containing an antifreeze solution. The purpose of the heater is to thermally circulate the liquid, however, the heater may be provided with a hydraulic motor driven pump P (FIGS. 4 and 5), for increasing the liquid flow rate through the piping. The piping is supported in itshelically wound fashion by standards 110 connected with the inner surface of the opposing. walls 80 of the tank and including U-shaped bolts 111 secured to the standards and loosely surrounding a peripheral portion of successive runs of the piping. The piping is preferably provided with unions, not shown, for ease in assembly and for servicing or replacing the piping.

Agitator means 1 12 is mounted within the tank 74 for mixing fluid 113 (FIG. 4) with other material, not shown, deposited in the tank. The agitator means comprises four vertical radially spaced blades 114 each twisted 180 and extending from near the tank bottom to near the tank top and are secured by arms 115 to a shaft 1 16 in turn secured to the top and bottom wall of the tank-by bearings 118. The upper end of the shaft 116 projects through the top wall of the tank and is drivably connected to a hydraulic motor 120 operated by the truck hydraulic system for rotating the agitator means. The agitator means 112 is shown centrally disposed within the tank but may be disposed adjacent one of the tank side walls 80, if desired.

When the apparatus is used as a snowplow wherein snow drifts of considerable depth are encountered, a deflector or guide means 122 is connected with the walls 28 and 29. When the apparatus is moved forwardly the guide means 122 thus deflects drifted snow downwardly and rearwardly toward the housing opening 30.

The snow pickup area of the conveyor portion 20 may be increased laterally by a pair of wing panels 129 connected with the opposite ends 28 and 29 of the conveyor. Each of the panels 129 comprise an angle iron reinforced rectangular plate 130 removably connected pivotally at one end by pins extending through cooperating apertured lugs secured, respectively, to the respective wing panel 129 and conveyor ends 28 and 29 in vertically aligned relation. The wings 129 are held in a desired angular position by braces 131 connected at one end with the respective wing 129 intermediate its length and height, and connected, at their other ends, to the rearward limit of the arms 34.

Referring more particularly to FIGS. 8, 9 and 10, a modification of the apparatus is illustrated for throwing snow laterally of the vehicle rather than depositing it in the tank means 22. This is accomplished by removing the depending tubular section 59 and replacing it with an elongated arcuately curved tube 137 having one end connected to the housing tube portion 56 and its other end portion supported near the upper lateral limit of the tank means by a clamp 132, or the like, so that conveyor housing 26. The guide means 122 comprises a sheet metal panel 124 (FIG. 7) which longitudinally contacts the upper surface of the housing wall and is inclined upwardly and forwardly therefrom being reinforced by beads or ribs 126. The respective ends of the panel 124 are connected by substantially triangular shaped end members 128 to the respective housing end snow collected by the conveyors is discharged by the thrower blades 46 through the open end of the elongated tube 137 to the left of the apparatus, as viewed in FIG. 10.

Referring now to FIGS. 13 to 21, a fragmentary end portion of the conveyor shaft and one conveyor 44 is illustrated in FIG. 18, for depicting the manner of converting the conveyor means 20 to a brushing or sweeping action. This is accomplished by forming a plurality of spaced-apart slots 133 adjacent the free edge surface of the flange 134 forming the screw conveyor. A plurality of brush segments 135, each having a base portion 136 are provided with a pair of bolts and nuts 138 for respectively entering pairs of the slots 133. The bolts 138 secure the respective brush segment to the conveyor flange 134, in end to end abutted relation with respect to other adjacent brush segments, so that the brush fibers 139 project beyond the cylindrical plane described by the conveyor flange 134 wherein the elongated slots 133 permit adjustment of the respective brush segment tocompensate for wear of the fibers.

FIG. 21 illustrates a fragment of one of the thrower blades 46 wherein one or more brush segments 140 are secured to the ends of the thrower blades by bolts, or

the like, in a substantially identical manner to that disclosed for the conveyor flanges 134. It should be noted, however, that the brush segments 140 are secured to the surface of the respective thrower blade 46 opposite its material contacting surface with the bristles or fibers of the brush segments turned to extend beyond the end of the thrower blade 46 and curved arcuately toward the plane of the blade opposite the brush segment connected surface, as at 141, so that the thrower blades 46 will sweep that portion of the roadway surface disposed between adjacent ends of the conveyors within the housing 26.

A brush shield 142 (FIG. 20) is supported by the inner surface of the conveyor housing 26 for reducing the area of the housing opening 30 during a roadway sweeping action. The shield 142 comprises an elongated plate coextensive with the inner surface of the housing 26 and substantially semicircular in transverse section. Flanges 144 at the respective ends of the shield receive bolts, not shown, for connecting the shield to the housing plates 28 and 29 and disposing its forward edge 146 downwardly, as shown, in FIGS. and 17. The shield is provided with a slot 148 medially its ends for accommodating the discharge tube 56.

When the apparatus is used as a sweeper having the brush segments 135 attached to the conveyors 44, the shoe 48 is removed so that the brush fibers may contact the street or roadway surface 54 during the sweeping action. Obviously the housing 26 must be lowered by actuating the hydraulic cylinders 38 so that the brush fibers 139 will contact the roadway surface.

As shown in FIGS. 14 and 15, the span of the sweeping action may be increased by horizontally connecting a pair of sweep conveyors 150 and 152 to the respective ends of the conveyor means in substantial alignment with the forward limit of the conveyors 44. Since the sweep conveyors 150 and 152 are substantially identical, only the sweep conveyor 150 will be described in detail. The sweep conveyor 150 comprises a horizontally disposed cylindrical-like housing 154 of selected diameter, for example eight inches, and longitudinally substantially equal to one-half the length of the conveyor housing 26 and having a downwardly directed opening 156 (FIG. 19). A hydraulic motor-.l58 is coaxially connected to one end of the housing 154. The other end portion of the housing 154 is pivotally connected to a finger 160 secured to and projecting laterally outward and forwardly of the conveyor housing 26 permitting the screw conveyor 150 to be horizontally pivoted about its connection with the finger 160 for positioning the latter forwardly of the conveyor means 20 when the apparatus is moved down a roadway and is not being used in a sweeping action. The hydraulic motor 158 is drivably connected coaxially with the shaft of a fiber brush equipped screw conveyor 162. The other end of the conveyor 162 is journalled by an end plate 164 at the opposite end of the housing 154. The hydraulic motor 158 is connected with the vehicle hydraulic system by hydraulic tubing, neither of which are shown, and controlled by the operator within the control cab 14. An elongated brace 166 is connected at one end with the rearward end portion of the arms 34 and is connected, at its other end, in supporting relation with the hydraulic motor 158.

To enhance the roadway sweeping function and clean the swept surfaces of sand, dirt, and small objects not picked up by the brush equipped conveyors a vacuum pickup means is provided which also serves to collect and dispose a substantial portion of dust generated during the brush sweeping action. The vacuum sweeping means comprises a blower 170 driven by the vehicle engine or a hydraulic motor, not shown.

As shown more clearly in FIG. 16, the blower 170 has an inlet opening 172 connected by tubing 174, 176 and 178 with suction nozzles 180, 182 and 184 disposed rearwardly of and supported by the conveyor housing 26 and sweep conveyors 150 and 152, respectively. The suction nozzles 180, 182 and 184 are relatively narrow when compared with their length having end and side walls 186 terminating downwardly in a horizontal plane substantially defining the depending limit of the conveyor housing 26 and sweep conveyor hosuings 154, as illustrated in FIGS. 13 and 19. A length of flexible fabric material, such as canvas 188, or the like, coextensive with respect to the nozzle walls 186, respectively, is secured to the respective nozzle wall in depending relation and contacts the surface of the earth or roadway 54. The outlet tube 190 of the blower is connected by an elongated tube 192 to a dirt and dust inlet nipple or pipe 194 communicating with the top of the tank means 22 laterally of the discharge tube means 24. When the blower or vacuum'sweeper 170 is not being used the nozzles 180, 182 and 184 and their connecting tubing is usually removed together with the dust and dirt discharge tube 192 and the dirt receiving pipe 194 is covered by a cap 196.

When using the sweeping and vacuum cleaning apparatus the tank vent is provided with a flanged end vent pipe 200. A vent cap 202 is secured to the upwardly disposed end of the vent pipe. A suitable 204, having one or more screens 208, is removably supported by the tank vent pipe by a flanged edge 206 overlying the upper flanged end of the vent pipe 200 downwardly of the cap 202.

FIG. 12 illustrates an end portion of a drain tube extension 210 having a flange 212, at one end, provided with wing nuts and bolts 214 cooperatingly received by slots formed in flanged end portions of the tank drain tubes 92 and 103.

OPERATION In operation, for removing snow, the shoe 48 is in place on the housing 26 and the deflector 122 and wing panels 129 are attached, if desired. The apparatus is moved forwardly by the engine 12 driving the wheels 18 and rotating the conveyors 44, in the direction of the arrow (FIGS. 1 and 7), by the drive means described hereinabove. The dual bladed screw conveyors 44 move quantities of snow toward the central portion of the housing by their rapid angular velocity wherein the impeller blades 46, communicating with the lower tubular portion 56, forces the snow in a throwing action, upwardly through the tubes 59 and 60 into the tank. Before starting the cleaning action a desired quantity of the water 113 is placed in the tank 74. The heater H is similarly in operation circulating heated fluid by thermal action or the pump P through the piping coils which melts snow received by the tank with the snow mixing and melting action enhanced by the agitator means 112. The agitator 112 achieves a mixing and melting of the snow with vary little or no heat and at a temperature at or near 32F. as a result of the churning action. Further, since no chemicals are used in the tank stream polution is eliminated. The level of water accumulating in the tank is preferably visually indicated, by a fluid level indicator, not shown, in the control cab so that the operator may periodically drain the tank by opening the valve means 94.

In removing snow piled near aircraft runways, aircraft hangers or roads, one of the valves 94 or 102 may be partially opened to drain off water accumulating in the tank while the row or pile of snow is being picked up and melted. Obviously the drain hose 210 must be arranged to direct the released water laterally off the traffic area.

During the warm season of the year the brush segments and are connected with the conveyor flanges 134 and thrower blades 46, as described hereinabove, and the housing shoe 48 is removed so that the brush equipped conveyors 44 may act as a sweeper for cleaning soil or debris off the street or roadway which is similarly thrown upwardly through the tube means 24 and into the tank.

When using the apparatus as a surface sweeper, the sweep conveyors 150 and 152 may be connected therewith, if desired, to sweep a transverse area of substantial dimension. During such sweeping action, the sweep conveyors 150 and 152 are in operation, and move dirt, or the like, toward the respective end portion of the conveyor means 20 where it is picked up by the brush equipped screw conveyors 44, as described hereinabove. During the sweeping action the blower 170 is preferably in operation to generate a suction or vacuum sweeping action through the nozzles 180, 182 and 184 to pick up dust, dirt and the like not picked up by the brushes.

When used as a sweeper the tank 74 is preferably partially filled with a quantity of the water 113 so that material swept up and deposited in the tank by the sweeping and vacuum action will be churned or mixed by the agitator 112 to form a slurry which is similarly drained off through the valve means 94 and 102 at selected intervals.

. During the sweeping and vacuuming action, as-described hereinabove, the filter 204 prevents dust, and the like being exhausted to the atmosphere, thus, it may be seen that this apparatus, when used as a snow remover or a surface sweeper, does not pollute the atmosphere. Similarly the use of hydraulic motors for driving various components, as described hereinabove, reduces the noise of operation of the apparatus to a minimum.

When it is desired to move the apparatus along a highway, or the like, when the snow or debris pickup portion is not being used, the braces 166 are disconnected fromtheir supporting relation with respect to the hydraulic motors 158 and the screw conveyors 150 and 152 are pivoted about their connection with the finger 160 to be horizontally positioned forwardly of the conveyor means 20. The hydraulic cylinders 38 are actuated to lift the conveyor means 20 and screw conveyors 150 and 152 upwardly above the surface of the earth.

Obviously the invention is susceptible to changes or alterations without defeating its practicability, thereof,

I do not wish to be confined to the preferred embodiment shown in the drawings and described herein.

I claim:

1. A roadway cleaning apparatus in combination with a prime mover comprising a vehicle chassis having an engine control means thereon including a control cab and having a hydraulic fluid pump, the improvement comprising:

conveyor means transversely connected to the forward end of said chassis,

said conveyor means including a substantially cylindrical housing disposed'horizontally adjacent the surfaceof the earth,

said housing having closed ends and having a coextensive downwardly and forwardly directed openmg,

said housing having a rearward and upwardly directed discharge opening medially its ends,

.a pair of cooperating coaxially aligned screw conveyors extending between and journalled by said housing ends, and impeller blades interposed between and connected, respectively, with adjacent ends of said screw conveyors medially the ends of said housing, the length of each said impeller blade being equal with the radius of said screw conveyors,

said screw conveyors being characterized by a helical edge portion generating a cylindrical plane coinciding with a circular plane generated by the outwardly directed limit of said thrower blades as the conveyors are rotated about their axis,

said helical edge portions and said impeller blades having a series of spaced-apart slots transversely formed therein adjacent their outer edge;

a plurality of brush segments each having a rectangular base portion and bristles secured thereto;

means extending through the slots and securing said brush segments, in base end to end abutting relation to the respective said screw conveyor and impeller blade outer edge portions;

drive means for rotating said screw conveyors;

belt and pulley drive means extending between and respectively connected with said prime mover and one end portion of one said screw conveyor;

a rectangular fluid containing closed tank having a material receiving opening in its top wall and having inner and outer spaced-apart walls having heat and cold insulation therebetween mounted on said vehicle chassis rearwardly of and projecting above the horizontal plane defining the upper limit of said control cab;

a pair of shafts transversely journalled in coaxial aligned relation by the forward end portion of said chassis;

a pair of arms pivotally connected at one end portion, respectively, to the respective outwardly disposed end portion of the respective said shaft, the other end portion of said arms being pivotally connected, respectively, with opposing end portions of said housing;

a pair of braces projecting forwardly of said tank in laterally spaced relation above said housing;

a pair of pressure operated cylinders extending between and connected, respectively, with the forward end portion of said braces and opposing end portions of said housing for vertical pivoting movement of said housing about the horizontal axis of said shafts;

a discharge tube connected, at one end, with said housing around its discharge opening and extending rearwardly and upward, at its other end, and connected with said tank top wall around the receiving opening;

a heater mounted on said chassis;

piping connected with said heater and extending, intermediate its ends into said tank and being helically wound, adjacent the inner periphery of said tank; and,

an antifreeze liquid filling said heater and said tubing.

2. The apparatus according to claim 1 and further including: an agitator within said tank,

said agitator comprising a shaft extending vertically between and journalled, respectively, by the top and bottom walls of said tank, a plurality of vertically disposed blades connected with said shaft in radially spaced-apart relation, each said blade being twisted about its longitudinal axis substantially and a hydraulic motor operatively connected with said shaft for rotating the latter about its vertical axis.

3. The apparatus according to claim 2 and further including:

means including drain valves and drain tubing for draining said tank.

4. The apparatus according to claim 3 and further including:

a pair of earth surface engaging sweep screw conveyors respectively connected at one end to the forward limit of the respective end portion of said housing in cooperating laterally extending horizontally aligned relation;

a cylindrical jacket substantially surrounding said respective sweep screw conveyor;

hydraulic motor means mounted on each said cylindrical jacket and drivably connected with one end portion of the respective said sweep screw conveyor; and

brace means extending between and connected with said chassis and the outermost end portion of each said cylindrical jacket for horizontally supporting the latter.

5. The apparatus according to claim 3 in which said drain valves and drain tubing means includes:

a drain valve disposed within said tank;

a drain tube communicating with said drain valve and projecting outwardly through one wall of said tank; and,

a control rod extending into said tank and connected with said drain valve for opening and closing said drain valve.

6. The apparatus according to claim 1 in which said housing further includes:

an elongated liner wall substantially semicircular, in transverse cross section, underlying the upwardly disposed portion of said housing and being movable forwardly and downwardly for decreasing the transverse dimension of the housing downwardly and forward opening.

7. The apparatus according to claim 1 in which the bristles on the impeller mounted brush segments are curved to extend in the direction of rotation of said impeller blades a distance substantially equal to the thickness of each said impeller blade.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification15/83, 15/340.3, 37/228
International ClassificationE01H1/08, E01H1/00, E01H5/10
Cooperative ClassificationE01H1/0845, E01H5/104
European ClassificationE01H5/10C, E01H1/08C2B