US 3775906 A
A sliding portal having an electrically actuated operating mechanism mounted thereon.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1 1 Dougherty Dec. 4, 1973  SLIDING PORTAL AND OPERATING 1,817,909 8/1931 Blodgett 49/358 X DEVICE THEREFORE 1,639,866 8/1927 Szuch et a]. 49/358 X 999,119 7/1911 Manin 49/427 Inventor: Earle g y, 3420 71st 3,606,699 9 1971 Robinson 49/358 x Ave., Phoenix, Ariz. 85033 N P T N R A P 1C S Filed: Dec. 1971 FORElG A E TS O P L ATION 714,959 8/1965 Canada 49/358  Appl. No.: 213,000
Primary Examiner-J. Karl Bell  US. Cl 49/358, 49/360, 49/427 Attorney-Herbert E. Haynes, Jr.  Int. Cl. E05f 11/54, E051" 15/14  Field of Search 49/358, 360, 425, v
49/426, 427  ABSTRACT  References Cited A sliding portal 'havingan electrically actuated operating mechanism mounted thereon. UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,257,756 6/ 966 Mealer 49/358 x 11 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures 3 3 31a 14 i 34 58 Z2 Z0 14 PATENTED SHEET 2 BF 2 AIJLL I NV ENTOR 54m TDawwerr 1 SLIDING PORTAL AND OPERATING DEVICE THEREFORE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates to portal operating mechanisms, and more particularly to a sliding gate or door with an electrically actuated operating device mounted thereon.
2. Description of the Prior Art 7 Sliding portals such as fence gates and doors which are equipped withoperating mechanisms have heretofore employed a complex slide track structure with a stationary operating device positioned adjacent to the sliding portal.
In general, the prior art operator mechanisms are powered by electric motors and are equipped with a suitable gear box, friction clutch, brake mechanism and the like to drive an output sprocket. The portal is provided with a chain which is connected to the opposite ends of the portal. The chain is drivingly engaged by the output sprocket of the operator mechanism so that movement of the sprocket causes the chain and the portal to which it is connected to slide along its track mechanism. 1
Therefore, it may be seen that the mounting structure which supports and houses the operating mechanism must be adequately secured to the ground. The operator mechanism is normally enclosed within a box like structure which is mounted on a concrete pad positioned adjacent to the portal.
Such prior art structures are costly to install by virtue of the materials employed and the time involved in their installations. I
In view of the foregoing a need exists for a sliding portal structure with an operator mechanism mounted thereon, which eliminates some of the problems of the prior art structures.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In accordance with the invention, a new and useful sliding portal structure with an operator mechanism mounted thereon is disclosed. i The portal-structure in the form of a fence gate or door is slidingly mounted on a support post which has suitable pulley and guiding devices mounted thereon. An electrically actuated operator device is mounted on one end of the portal structure and is adapted to move therewith. A chain is connected on its opposite ends to a stationary portion of the fence or building which is adjacent to the opening in which the portal is designed to operate. The intermediate portions of the chain are in engagement with the operator mechanism so that the portal and the operator mechanism travel along the length of the chain when the operator is actuated.
Accordingly it is one object of the present invention to provide a new and useful sliding portal operator mechanism.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a new and useful sliding portal operator mechanism of simple construction and easy installation to reduce costs thereof.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a new and useful sliding portal operator mechanism which reduces installation time by eliminating the need for securing the operator mechanism to the ground.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a new and useful sliding portal, operator mechanism.
which is mounted on the sliding portal and is movable therewith.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a new and useful sliding portal mechanism which employs an electric motor, magnetic brake, reduction gears and output sprocket, all of which are mounted on a pedestal secured to a sliding portal.
Another object of the present invention is to provide anew and useful combination of a sliding portal'and operator mechanism therefore.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a new and useful combination of a sliding portal mounted on a support post which carries an alignment wheel and guiding device which eliminates the need for a slide track assembly, the sliding portal being provided with an operator mechanism mounted thereon which is movable therewith.
The foregoing and other objects of this invention, the various features thereof, as well as the invention itself, may be more fully understood from the following description when'read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a front'elevation of the sliding portal structure having the operator mechanism mounted thereon and incorporating the features of this invention;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged sectional view taken on the line 2-2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is an enlarged sectional view taken on 3-3 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged sectional view partially broken away taken on the line 44 of FIG. 3; and
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary sectional view partially broken away taken on the line 5-5 of FIG. 4.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring more particularly to the drawings, FIG. 1 illustrates a portal operator mechanism indicated generally by the reference numeral 10. The operator 10 is shown as mountedon a sliding portal structure 12.
The sliding portal I2 is illustrated as a fence like installation having a stationary portion 14 and a sliding gate 16 which is positioned to operate adjacent to a gate opening 18 provided in the fence.
It should be understood that the sliding portal l2as shown is illustrative only, as the operator 10 may be adapted to function with any similar type of sliding closure such as a garage door, barn door, and the like.
The operator 10 includes an electric motor 20 with a magnetic brake assembly 22 mounted thereon. The magnetic brake 22 is in turn suitably connected to a reduction gear box 24. The gear box 24 is provided with a base 26 which is positioned on and mounted to a pedestal assembly 28. As best seen in FIGS. 3 and 4 the gear box base 26 provides a mounting means for the gear box 24 itself, from which the motor 20 and magnetic brake 22 are suspended in a cantilever mounting arrangement.
The gear box 24 is provided with an output shaft 30 which is disposed at a angle with respect to the longitudinal axis of the motor 20, magnetic brake 22 and the input to the gear box 24.
the line The output shaft 30 of the gear box 24 has a slip clutch 32 on the periphery of which is mounted an output sprocket 34.
The pedestal assembly 28 as best seen in FIGS. 4 and 5 includes a substantially horizontally disposed plate 36 upon which the base 26 of the gear box 24 is mounted. The plate 36 is provided with a downwardly depending flange 38 for supporting a pair of idler sprockets 40 and 42 as will hereinafter be described in detail.
Thepedestal 28 also includes a downwardly depending L-shaped channel 44 welded or otherwise secured to the lower surface of the plate 36. The channel 44 is provided with a pair of spaced apart clamps 46 and 48 bolted or otherwise secured thereto. The channel 44, clamps 46 and 48 provide mounting means for attaching the operator mechanism to the portal structure 12. Thus, the mounting means may be modified or replaced with any mounting devices which would be suitable for mounting the operator on a particular type of sliding portal.
The idler sprockets 40 and 42 are rotatably journaled on suitable bearings 49 carried on axle shafts 50 and 52. One end of each of the axle shafts 50 and 5 2 are fixedly secured to the flange 38 and extend laterally therefrom. The extending ends of the axle shafts 50 and 52 are each supportingly mounted in a flange 56 which depends downwardly from a shield 58. The shield 58 is provided with an arcuate upper portion 60 which protects the output sprocket34, the idler sprockets 40 and 42 from entanglement.
As seen best in FIGS. 4 and 5, the idler sprockets 40 and 42 are in alignment with the output sprocket 34, and are spaced apart with respect to each other. A chain 62 is looped over the output sprocket 34 to extend downwardly from each side thereof into engagement with each of the idler sprockets 40 and 42 which change the direction of the chain 62 so that it extends outwardly and horizontally from each of the idler sprockets 40 and 42..
The chain 62 is connected on its. opposite ends 64 and 66 to the stationary portion 14 of the fence like structure thus securing the chain against movement.
It may now be seen that with the chain 62 secured as hereinbefore described, the only possible movement is for the operator mechanism 10 to walk along the length of the chain 62 and carry the sliding portal structure 12 with it.
The operator mechanism 10 is previously described, provides additional desirable features by virtue of the magnetic brake assembly 22 and the slip clutch 32.
When power to the motor is shut off, the magnetic brake 22 is engaged, thus applying a load to the input of the gear box 24. This load plus the mechanical advantage of the gear ratio provides an effective locking mechanism so that the portal 12 cannot be operated when the power is off.
The slip clutch 32 provides a safety feature. In the event that the. portal 12 strikes any object when it is opening or closing, motion of the portal will stop due to slippage of the clutch 32.
As hereinbefore discussed, the operator mechanism 10 may be employed with any type of sliding portal structure. However, to provide a complete low-cost easily'installed assembly, a particular type' of sliding 6 portal structure is desirable.
As seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, the sliding portal 12 includes a main support post 68 suitably rigidly fixed in the ground 70. A suspension and alignment pulley 72 is attached to the upper end of the post 68 by a clamp 74. The clamp 74 is provided with a trunion 76 about which the pulley 72 freely rotates.
The pulley 72 is formed with an arcuate groove 78 which fits between an upper guide tube 80 and a lower guide tube 82 of the portal frame 84. The upper and lower tubes 80 and 82 extend along the length of the frame 84 and are rigidly held in a parallel relationship by vertical end members 86 and 88. Additional suitable braces 90 may be provided at spaced intervals to assure rigidity and alignment of the tubes 80 and 82.
The lower ends of the vertical end members 86 and 88 are rigidly connected to opposite ends of a bottom rail 92 to form the frame 84 into a substantially rectangular structure.
A suitable ground engaging wheel 94 is rotatably mounted on each end of the frame 84 at the junction points formed where the opposite ends of the bottom rail 92 are attached to their respective end members 86 and 88. As seen best in FIG. 2, a hook 96 is provided at the lower end of the post 68. The hook 96 is positioned to slidingly engage the bottom rail 92 of the frame 84 to prevent lateral deflection thereof.
It will be noted that when the sliding portal 12 is in a substantially half open or half closed position as shown in FIG. 1, it will be balanced at an intermediate point of the upper tube 80 by engagement with the top of the suspension and alignment pulley 72-. At this point both of the ground engaging wheels 94 are suspended above the ground surface 70. The total weight of the portal 12 at this time is thus suspended on the pulley 72 for easy movement of the portal to open or closed positions. As the portal is moved away from its center position, it will slightly tip until the appropriate wheel 94 engages the ground surface. It will thus be noted that at all times the suspension and alignment pulley supports at least half of the weight of the portal while at the same time maintains both vertical and longitudinal alignment of the portal by engaging its tubes 80 and 86.
While the principles of the invention have now been made clear in an illustrative embodiment, there will be immediately obvious to those skilled in the art many modifications of structure, arrangement, proportions, the elements, materials, and components, used in the practice of the invention and otherwise which are particularly adapted for specific environments and operating requirements without departing from those principles. The appended claims are therefore intended to cover and embrace any such modifications within the limits only of the true spirit and scope ofthe invention.
What I claim is:
1. An operator device for reciprocally moving a laterally sliding portal which is operable within an opening formed in a stationary structure, said operator device comprising:
a. a substantially horizontally disposed chain attached on its opposite ends to the stationary structure, said chain disposed in a plane parallel to the opening formed in the stationary structure and positioned laterally adjacent thereto;
b. a pedestal attached to the sliding portal for movemovement therealong when said drive means is actuated.
2. An operator device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said pedestal comprises:
a. a plate for supporting said drive means; and
b. mounting means attached to said plate for attaching said pedestal to the sliding portal.
3. An operator device as claimed in claim 2 wherein said mounting means comprises:
a. a channel member attached to said plate and depending downwardly therefrom; and
b. a pair of clamps attached to said channel member for securing said pedestal to the sliding portal.
4. An operator device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said drive means comprises: I
a. a gear box havingan output shaft, said gear box mounted on said pedestal;
b. a motor coupled to said gear box for providing input power thereto;
c. an output sprocket mounted on the output shaft of said gear box for being rotatably driven thereby;
d. a pair of idler sprockets rotatably joumaled on said pedestal, .each of said idler sprockets aligned with said output sprocket and horizontally spaced apart with respect to each other, said idler sprockets and saidoutput sprocket engagable withsaid chain for travel therealong resultant from rotary movement of said output sprocket.
5. An operator device as claimed in claim 4 further comprising a magnetic brake mounted between said gear box and said motor for preventing movement of the operator device when power to said motor is shut off.
6. An operator device as claimed in claim 4 further comprising a slip clutch mounted on the output shaft of said gear box, said slip clutch having said output sprocket mounted thereon.
7. An operator device as claimed in claim 4 further comprising a shield mounted on said pedestal and positioned for preventing entanglement of said output sprocket and said idler sprockets.
8. An operator device for a laterally sliding portal comprising in combination:
a. a stationary structure having an opening formed therein;
b. a portal mounted in a plane parallel to the opening of said stationary structure and adapted for lateral sliding reciprocal movement in that plane between a closed position across the opening of said stationary structure and an open position laterally adjacent to the opening formed in said stationary structure;
tached on its opposite ends to said stationary structure and in a plane parallel thereto, said chain mounted laterally adjacent to the opening formed in said stationary structure;
d. a pedestal attached to said portal for movement therewith; and
e. drive means mounted on said pedestal and posia substantially horizontally disposed chain at- V tioned to engagingly contact said chain for movement therealong when said drive means is actuated.
9. An operator device for asliding portal as claimed in claim 8 wherein said drive means comprises:
a. a gear box mounted on said pedestal;
b. a motor coupled to the input of said gear box;
0. an output sprocket mounted on the output shaft of said gear box;
d. a pair of idler sprockets joumaled for rotation on said pedestal assembly, said output sprocket and said idler sprockets each engaging said chain for.
moving said po'rtal along the length thereof when said motor is actuated; and
e. a shield mounted on said pedestal for preventing entanglement of said output sprocket, said idler pulley and said chain.
10. An operator device for a sliding portal as claimed in claim 8 wherein said drive means comprises:
a. a gear box mounted on said pedestal and having an output shaft;
b. a magnetic brake coupled to the input of said gear box;
c. a motor coupled to the input end. of said magnetic brake, said motor adapted to supply power through said magnetic brake to said gear box to produce rotary motion of the output shaft thereof;
d. a slip clutch mounted on the output shaft of said gear box;
e. an output sprocket mounted on said slip clutch;
f. a pair of idler sprockets rotatably joumaled on said pedestal and in alignment, with said output sprocket, said idler sprockets and said output sprocket engageably contacting said chain for travel therealong in response to the rotary motion of said output sprocket; and
g. a shield mounted on said pedestal for protecting said output sprocket and said idler sprocket from entanglement.
11. An operator device fora sliding portal as claimed in claim 8 wherein said portal comprises:
a. a vertically disposed support post;
b. a suspension and alignment pulley joumaled on the upper end of said support post for rotation about a horizontal axis, said pulley having an arcuate groove formed in the periphery thereof;
. a portal having a pair of guide tubes positioned in the upper end thereof, the guide tubes being horizontally disposed and parallel with respect to each other, the guide tubes engaging the arcuate groove above and below said pulley for suspending said portal therefrom and for maintaining lateral alignment of said portal when rolled on said pulley;
d. a ground engaging wheel joumaled for rotation on each lower comer of said portal; and
e. a hook member positioned on the lower end of said support post and slidingly engaging said portal for preventing lateral deflection thereof.