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Publication numberUS3805365 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 23, 1974
Filing dateJan 5, 1973
Priority dateDec 13, 1972
Publication numberUS 3805365 A, US 3805365A, US-A-3805365, US3805365 A, US3805365A
InventorsHarrell D. Ashby
Original AssigneeAshby H
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method and apparatus for constructing house structures to be transported and installed at remote locations
US 3805365 A
Abstract
A method and apparatus for constructing house structures to be transported and installed at remote locations via a trailer assembly or the like wherein the house frameworks are constructed within product construction bays located in a portion of a building enclosure, the constructed house frameworks being subsequently moved from the building enclosure through product door openings and supported on outside support assemblies for finishing the house frameworks to form the completed house structures.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

[451 Apr. 23, 1974 METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR 29/208 D 29/200 A X 3,537,168 11/1970 Carroll.............................. 3,574,920 4/1971 Stirling......................,...

CONSTRUCTING HOUSE STRUCTURES TO BE TRANSPORTED AND INSTALLED AT REMOTE LOCATIONS [76] Inventor:

Primary Examiner-Thomas H. Eager Harrell Ashby, Box 636, Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Dunlap, Laney, Hessin & Carnegie, Okla. 73015 Dougherty Jan. 5, 1973 [22] Filed:

ABSTRACT [21] Appl. No.: 321,519

Related US Application Data A method and apparatus for constructing house strucin-part of Ser. No. 314,806, Dec. 13,

Continuation tures to be transported and installed at remote loca- 1972. tions via a trailer assembly or the like wherein the house frameworks are constructed within product construction [52] US. 29/430, 29/200 A bays located in a portion of a building [51] Int. 1323p 19/00 enclosure, the constructed house frameworks being [58] Field of Search. 29/430, 200 A, 208 D, 200 B, subsequently moved from the building enclosure 29/429 through product door openings and supported on outside support assemblies for finishing the house frame- [56] References Cited works to form the completed house structures.

UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,225,434 Van Der Lely et 29/430 13 Claims, 2 Drawing lFigures METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR CONSTRUCTION HOUSE STRUCTURES TO BE TRANSPORTED AND INSTALLED AT REMOTE LOCATIONS CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS This application is a continuation-in-part and related to the subject matter disclosed in the Applicants copending application entitled APPARATUS FOR TRANSPORTING HOUSE STRUCTURES OR THE LIKE, filedon Ser. No. 314,806, Dec. 13, 1972.

BACKGROUND OT THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates generally to improvements in method and apparatus for constructing house structures and, more particularly, but not by way of limitation, to an improved method and apparatus for constructing house structures or the like to be transported and installed at remote locations.

2. Brief Description of the Prior Art In the past various house structure designs and factory or plant constructions have been proposed for constructing house structures of the type sometimes referred to in the art as modules, the house structures being transported and installed at predetermined locations in various states of completion. In some instances, the module house structure was virtually completely constructed within the building enclosure or plant and the constructed module house structure was then transported to a jobsite for installation. In other instances, the basic building components, such as the wall, the floor, and the roof were constructed in a panel or subassembly form, the panels or sub-assemblies being transported and assembled at the jobsite to form the completed building structure. Whether the house structure was formed utilizing one or more completed module house structures or formed by assembling the various pre-fabricated panels or sub-assemblies at the jobsite, the builder sometimes utilized component modules, such as a bathroom module which was constructed as a complete unitat a factory and subsequently transported and installed at the jobsite, for example.

Since the panels, sub-assemblies or completed module house structures formed atathe factory generally have a relatively small value until they are installed and assembled at the jobsite, one of the problems plaguing the module house structure industry has been to find an efficient, economical manner to maintain a reasonable production flow moving the house structures through the various production stages and to the jobsite. Since the module house structures are relatively large, one other related problem in the module house structure industry has been the initial investment in the building enclosure or plant within which the module house structures are manufactured, most of the plants being relatively large for accommodating a number of module house structures in various stages of completion representing a relatively large investment in permanent plant facilities. In those instances where the plant or building enclosure was substantially large and presented a substantial permanent investment, as mentioned before, the module house structure manufacturer had a limited flexibility with respect to relocating or constructing an additional plant facility at a location more desirable with respect to the present sales and labor market and with respect to jobsite access, the latter being an important consideration with respect to the time required to move the completed module house structures or components therefor.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An object of the invention is to provide a method and apparatus for constructing house structures of the type to be transported and installed at a jobsite or the like in a faster, more efficient and more economical manner.

Another object of the invention is to provide a method and apparatus for constructing house structures of the type to be transported and installed at a jobsite or the like requiring a reduced building enclosure area and a reduced permanent building enclosure construction and maintenance costs.

Yet another object of the invention is to provide a method and apparatus for constructing house structures of the type to be transported and installed at a jobsite or the like utilizing available plant space in a more efficient and more economical manner.

A still further object of the invention is to provide a method and apparatus for constructing house structures of the type to be delivered and installed at a jobsite or the like wherein the inspection and quality checking at various stages of production are effected in a more efficient and more economical manner.

One other object of the invention is to provide a method and apparatus for constructing house structures of the, type to be transported and installed at a jobsite or the like in a manner wherein the efficiency is increased and the costs of delivering various materials to predetermined locations for installation at various stages of production is substantially reduced.

A further object of the invention is to provide a method and apparatus for constructing house structuresof the type to be transported and installed at a jobsite or the like wherein the house structures are positioned at various stages of production to facilitate the loading of the house structures on a trailer apparatus or the like for moving the house structures to predetermined locations in a faster, more efficient and more economical manner.

Another object of the invention is to provide a method and apparatus for constructing house structures of the type to be transported and installed at a jobsite or the like which are economical in the construction and the operation thereof.

Other objects and advantages of the invention will be evident from the following detailed description when read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings which illustrate preferred embodiments of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic, schematic, plan view of a plant site for constructing house structures of the type to be transported and installed at remote locations, the apparatus of the plant site being constructed in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a diagrammatic, schematic, plan view, similar to FIG. 1, but showing a modified plant site for constructing house structures to be transported and installed at remote locations in accordance with the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to the drawings in general, and to FIG. 1 in particular, shown therein and designated by the general reference numeral 50 is a plant site for manufacturing and constructing house structures or portions thereof of the type which can be transported to a jobsite for installation or the like, the plant site apparatus being constructed and operated in accordance with the present invention. As shown in FIG. 1, the plant site is constructed and disposed generally between a plurality of boundary lines, the boundary lines being designated as a north boundary line 52, a south boundary line 54, an east boundary line 56 and a west boundary line 58 for the purpose of clarity of description and orientation. The boundary lines 52, 54, 56 and 58 form an outer periphery encompassing the spacial area of the plant site 50, the apparatus of the present invention being constructed, disposed and located within these boundary lines in a manner to be described in greater detail below.

In recent years, the construction of modular type house structures at factories or plant sites for delivery and installation at a jobsite has increased substantially. The particular construction of the house structure module varies considerably depending upon the particular manufacturer and the particular application; however, in general, each house structure module generally includes a basic house structure framework consisting of the exterior and the interior wall structures and, in some instances, includes the floor and roof structures. After the house structure framework has 'been constructed, the house structure module was then substantially finished, the finishing of the house structure modules generally including such operations as: finishing the interior walls with a wood paneling or drywall, installation of various fixtures, installation of the wiring and plumbing fixtures, installation of various built-in appliances, installation of wall and floor tiles, installation of cabinets and kitchen counter fixtures, and installation of the lighting and ventilation systems or portions thereof, to name a few of the finishing operations, for example.

In some applications, the house structure modules did not include a floor structure, a roof structure or some of the exterior wall structures, these particular house structure modules being more particularly constructed so that a number of such house structure modules could be tansported to a particular jobsite and installed in an interconnecting or integral fashion forming a multi-level of a multi-unit type of house structure as, for example, an apartment, motel or other such housing unit complex. Although in some instances the exterior wall structures included paneling or other such decorative members, in some other instances, the house structure modules were constructed for installation at a jobsite in such a manner that a brick type of wall structure or the like could then be built about the exterior wall structures of the house structure module.

The term house structure is utilized herein to generally refer to a house structure of the type to be constructed at a plant site or factory and transported to a jobsite for assembly and installation on a foundation as first-referred to above, or a house structure of the type to be constructed at a plant site or factory and subsequently transported to a jobsite and assembled and installed on a foundation and integrally connected with other house structure modules forming a completed complex of the type last-referred to above. The term house structure framework is utilized herein to generally refer to the basic frame construction of the house structure including the exterior and the interior wall structures and, in some instances, to the roof and floor structures or various combinations thereof. The term finishing of the house structure framework or simply finishing is utilized herein to generally refer to the various operations and constructions such as, for example, the installation of the wiring, plumbing, wall paneling, and the lighting and the ventilation systems or the like. It is to be specifically noted that the present invention is not to be limited to any particular type, style or design of house structure module; but, is directed to a method and apparatus for constructing housestructure modules in general and the terms defined above are utilized herein solely for the purpose of clarity of description, the terms not being intended to limit the invention described and claimed herein to some particular, limited or narrow construction of the terms as applied to particular types of house structure modules or the like.

A building enclosure 60 is constructed and disposed within the boundary lines 52, 54, 56 and 58. The building enclosure 60 is basically rectangularly shaped and has opposite sides 62 and 64 and opposite sides 66 and 68, the sides of the building enclosure 60 being sometimes referred to below as the first side 62, the second side 64, the third side 66, and the fourth side 68, for the purposes of clarity of description.

The sides 62, 64, 66 and 68 of the building enclosure 60 are interconnected to define a wall 69 forming the outer periphery of the building enclosure 60 encompassing and enclosing an enclosed space 70. Each of the sides 62, 64, 66 and 68 extend a distance vertically upwardly from the level of a floor 72 and cooperate to support a portion of a roof structure (not shown), in a manner wellknown in the art. The first side 62 and the second side 64 each include a plurality of spaced product door openings 74, the first side 62 more particularly including two product door openings 74 formed therethrough and the second side 64 more particularly including three product door openings 74 formed therethrough. A pair of sliding doors 78 are movably disposed within each of the product door openings 74, each pair of sliding doors 78 being movable to a closed position and to an opened position, and providing communication between a portion of the enclosed space and a portion of the plant site 50 disposed generally outside the building enclosure 60 in an opened position of the sliding doors 78. More particularly, three product door openings 74 are spaced at predetermined positions along the second side 64 of the building enclosure 60 and two product door openings are spaced at predetermined positions along the first side 62 of the building enclosure 60, each of the product door openings 74 being of a sufficient size such that a house framework constructed within the enclosed area 70 can be removed from the building enclosure 60 via one of the product door openings 74 in an opened position of the sliding doors 78 associated therewith, for reasons which will be made more apparent below.

A material door opening 80 is also formed through the first side 62 of the building enclosure 60 and a pair of sliding doors 82 are movably disposed within the ma terial door opening 80. The sliding doors 82 are movably supported for movement to an opened and a closed position for providing communication between a portion of the enclosed area 70 and a portion of the plant site 50 outside the building enclosure 60 via the material door opening 80 in an opened position of the sliding doors 82, in a manner similar to that described above with respect to the product door openings 74 and the sliding doors 78.

Building enclosures having door openings with sliding doors disposed therein for opening and closing the door openings are well-known and a detailed description of the physical construction of the building enclosure is not required herein. It should also be noted that the building enclosure 60 may include additional openings forming window areas and additional door openings with door members supported therein for use in cooperation with an office or the like in a manner wellknown in the art (additional openings for windows or entry type doors not being shown in the drawings for the purpose of clarity of description). Further, although the building enclosure 60 has been shown in the drawing as being basically rectangularly shaped, the

method and apparatus of the present invention can also be utilized in cooperation with building enclosures of various shapes, such as circular, for example.

The building enclosure 60 and the enclosed area 70 thereof are particularly constructed such that a house framework can be constructed and assembled within the enclosed area 70 and removed from the enclosed area 70 via one of the product door openings 74 during the construction of the modular house structures. More particularly, a plurality of product construction bays are disposed within the building enclosure 60, each product construction bay consuming a portion of the enclosed area 70 of a sufficient size such that a house framework can be constructed and assembled within each of the product construction bays. As shown in FIG. 1, the building enclosure 60 includes five product construction bays, each product construction bay being designated in FIG. 1 via the encircled reference letter A, B," C, D and E, for the purpose ofidentification and clarity of description.

A portion of each product construction bay A, B, C, D and E is disposed adjacent one of the building enclosure sides and encompasses at least one of the product door openings 74. As shown in FIG. 1, each of the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E are spaced a distance from the adjacent product construction bays forming framework material aisles 84 generally between each of the product construction bays A, B and C disposed along the second side 64 of the building enclosure 60, between each of the product construction bays D and E spaced along the first side 62 of the building enclosure 60 and between the product construction bays A, B and C spaced along the second side 64 and the product construction bays D and E spaced along the first side 62 of the building enclosure 60. The framework material aisles 84 provide a means for communicating between each of the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E and an area 86 located generally near the material door opening 80 and encompassed via one side of the product construction bays A and E and a portion of the building enclosure sides 62 and 68, shown in FIG. 1.

A sixth product construction bay could be formed in the area 86 and the material door opening could be utilized in a manner similar to the utilization of the product door openings 74 during the operation of the method and apparatus of the present invention, in one form; however, the area 86 is utilized for general office space, a material storage area and a carpentry shop or the like, in one preferred form of the invention as shown in FIG. 1. In this manner, various materials, components and assemblies or the like utilized to construct the house framework can be transported from the area 86 to any one of the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E via the interconnected framework material aisles 84 and the progress and quality of the construction or manufacture of each of the house frameworks disposed within each of the product construction material bays A, B, C, D and E can be easily inspected in a relatively fast, efficient and economical manner utilizing the framework material aisles 84 providing quick, easy access to each of the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E and the house framework being constructed therein. It should be noted that, although each of the product construction bays A, B, C, D" and B have been outlined in dashed-lines in FIG. 1 as defining a particular area within the building enclosure 60, in actual practice the entire enclosed area 70 within the building enclosure 60 is generally open, in one preferred form, and the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E are not defined nor formed via any particular structure other than linemarkings on the floor 72 in a manner commonly utilized in product manufacturing plants to define various areas and walkways.

A plurality of inside support assemblies 88 are disposed within the enclosed area 71]) of the building enclosure 60, one of the inside support assemblies 88 being more particularly disposed generally within each of the product construction bays A," B, C, D and E. Each of the inside support assemblies 88 is constructed to support a house framework, the outline of a house framework being shown on each of the inside support assemblies 88 and each house framework being designated by the general reference numeral 90 in FIG. 1 for the purpose of orientation and clarity of description. Each of the inside support assemblies 88 includes a pair of support rails 92 (only the support rails 92 in the product construction bays C, D and E being designated by a reference numeral in the drawings for the purpose of clarity). The support rails 92 are spaced a distance apart and extend generally parallel, each of the support rails being supported a predetermined distance generally above the floor 72 of the building enclosure 60 via a plurality of support blocks (not shown) in a manner similar to the support blocks shown and referred to in the Applicants copending application entitled APPARATUS FOR TRANSPORTING HOUSE STRUCTURES OR THE LIKE, referred to before, and in a manner generally wellknown in the art. More particularly, the house framework 90 is constructed and supported on the sup port rails 92, the support rails 92 and the supporting support blocks (not shown) disposed thereunder supporting each of the constructed house frameworks 90 a predetermined distance above the floor 72 to facilitate the insertion of a portion of a trailer apparatus generally beneath the house framework 90 for removing the house framework 90 from the construction bays A, B, C," D and E via one of the product door openings 74, in a manner and for reasons to be made more apparent below.

The apparatus of the present invention also includes a plurality of outside support assemblies 94 (only some of the outside support assemblies 94 being designated in FIG. 1 via a reference numeral for the purpose of clarity). Each of the outside support assemblies 94 is disposed generally within a product finishing area, each product finishing area being generally identified in FIG. 1 via one of the encircled numerals 1 through 20, inclusive.

Each of the outside support assemblies 94 includes a pair of the spaced parallel extending support rails 92 (only the support rails 92 in the product finishing areas 1, 10, 13 and 19 being designated via reference numerals in the drawings for the purpose of clarity). Each of the outside support assemblies 94 is constructed similar to the inside support assemblies 88 and the support rails 92 of each of the outside support assemblies 94 are supported a distance above the ground via a plurality of support blocks disposed thereunder (not shown) in a manner similar to that described before with respect to the inside support assemblies 88.

Each of the outside support assemblies 94 is disposed generally near the building enclosure 60 and constructed to receive one of the house frameworks 90 removed from the building enclosure 60 via a trailier apparatus or the like, the trailer apparatus or the like removing the house framework 90 from the building enclosure 60 and disposing the house framework 90 on one of the outside support assemblies 94. The outside support assemblies are sized to support the house framework 90 thereon in a manner similar to the inside support assemblies 88 during the finishing of the house framework 90 supported thereon and each of the outside support assemblies 94 is further constructed to facilitate the inertion of a portion of the trailer apparatus or the like generally beneath the finished house structure in such a manner that the finished house structure can be removed from the supporting outside support assembly 94 and transported to a jobsite at a remote lo cation via the trailer assembly or the like. It should be noted that only some of the dashed-line house frameworks 90 supported on the outside support assemblies 94 have been designated via a reference numeral for the purpose of clarity.

In one preferred form and as shown in FIG. 1, of the product finishing areas are disposed and spaced along a line generally parallel to the fourth side 68 of the building enclosure 60 and the other 10 of the product finishing areas are disposed and spaced along a line generally parallel to the first side 62 of the building enclosure 60. The 10 product finishing areas, designated in the drawings via the encircled numerals 1 through 10, inclusive, form a first group 102, the product finishing areas 1 through 10, inclusive, within the first group 102 being generally aligned and each product finishing area being spaced a distance from the adjacent product finishing areas. The other ten product finishing areas 11 through 20, inclusive, are disposed generally along a line parallel to the first side 62 of the building enclosure 20 and form a second group 104 of product finishing areas, each of the product finishing areas within the second group 104 being generally aligned and spaced a distance from the adjacent product finishing areas, in a manner similar to that described before with respect to the first group 102.

The product finishing areas 1 through 10 in the first group 102 and the product finishing areas 11 through 20 within the second group 104 are each spaced a distance 100 from the building enclosure 20, the space between the product finishing areas 1 through 10 of the first group 102 and the space between the product finishing areas 1 1 through 20 of the second group 104 defining a finishing material aisle 106 sized to accommodate the transportation of the house frameworks from the building enclosure 60 to one of the predetermined outside support assemblies 94 and to accommodate forklift vehicles or the like transporting various finishing materials to the product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive, during the operation of apparatus of the plant site 50, in a manner which will be made more apparent below.

In a preferred form, each of the product construction bays and, more particularly, each of the inside support assemblies 88 disposed within the product construction bays is identified via a unique inventory indicia such as the letters A, B, C, D and E, for example. Also, in a preferred form, each of the product finishing areas and, more particularly, each of the outside support assemblies 94 is also designated via a unique inventory indicia such as the numerals 1 through 20, inclusive, shown encircled in FIG. 1. Thus, each of the product construction bays is identified via an inventory indicia distinct from the identifying inventory indicia identifying each of the outside support assemblies 94, thereby uniquely maintaining the construction identifiability of each finished house structure at each stage of the manufacturing process utilizing the plant site apparatus of the present invention. For example, each of the house frameworks 90 constructed within the building enclosure 60 is identifiable via the inventory indicia A, B, C, D and E corresponding to the product construction bay within which the particular house framework 90 is located and, assuming the house framework 90 constructed within the product construction bay A is transported and supportingly disposed upon the outside support assembly 94 within the product finishing area 7, this particular building structure can be identified via the inventory indicia A7 indicating that the finished house structure framework was constructed within the product construction bay A and the finishing of this particular house structure was effected within the product finishing area 7, thereby providing an efficient method for maintaining inventory control and identifying various work crews responsible for the completed house structures.

It should further be noted that it generally requires more time to complete the various finishing operations as compared to the time required to construct the house frameworks. Further, during the finishing operations, it is necessary that the particular crews be scheduled according to the particular type of finishing work. For example, it is desirable to have the sheetrock or wood paneling installed prior to carpeting the floors. Utilizing the plant site apparatus of thepresent invention, the scheduling of the finishing work can be accomplished without interfering with the manufacture of the house framework or without requiring additional space within the building enclosure for storing a house framework until a particular finishing operation can be finalized, thereby allowing a more efficient and economical product flow, work plan operation and a more efficient and more economical utilization of the plant facilities.

In one preferred form, the apparatus of the present invention, more particularly, includes a predetermined number of outside support assemblies 94 at least substantially equal to the number of inside house support assemblies 88 multiplied by the ratio of the period of time required to complete the finishing of each house framework to the period of time required to construct the house framework, thereby providing sufficient outside support assemblies 94 for supporting the house frameworks 90 constructed within the building enclosure 60 and subsequently removed to and supported via one of the outside support assemblies 94. For example, assuming that, in a particular plant operation, each house framework 90 requires on the average a period of time approximately equal to 4 days for the construction thereof and, further assuming that it requires a period of time substantially equal to twenty days to finish the constructed house framework, then a plant site apparatus constructed in accordance with the present invention having five product construction bays, such as the five product constructionrbays A, B, C, D and E, shown in FIG. 1, would require approximately product finishing areas, such as the product finishing areas generally designated via the encircled numerals 1 through 20, inclusive, in FIG. 1, for receiving and supporting the constructed house frameworks 90.

In this example, each product construction bay essentially has associated therewith four product finishing areas and, after the manufacturing and production processes have leveled to a steady flow type of operation, the house frameworks supported within one of the four product finishing areas would be finished at approximately the same time as one house framework is constructed within the building enclosure. Thus, utilizing the apparatus of the present invention, the house frameworks can be constructed within the building enclosure 60 and, when each framework construction has been completed within the building enclosure 60, an outside support assembly 94 within one of the product finishing areas is available for receiving and supporting that particular constructed house framework, thereby reducing the period of time during which a particular house structure is located or stored within the enclosed space 70 of the building enclosure 60 and thus reducing the total area of the enclosed space 60 required for a particular plant site constructed to produce a predetermined number of finished house structures per period of time. I

It should be particularly noted that the outside support assemblies 94 within the first group 102 are spaced a predetermined distance 108 from the west boundary line 58 and the outside support assemblies 94 within the second group 104 are disposed generally adjacent or near the north boundary line 52 or, in other words, the outside support assemblies 94 of the second group 104 are each spaced a minimum distance from the north boundary line 52 of the plant site 50. This particular arrangement is important with respect to loading and unloading some types of house structures in that some of the manufactured house structures can only be loaded on a trailer apparatus or the like from one end (sometimes called the load end of the house structure). I

An ingress and egress space is provided between one end of the first group 102 and one end of the second group 104 of the outside support assemblies 94, the ingress and egress space being designated via the reference numeral 110 in FIG. 1. The first and the second group 102 and 104 of the outside support assemblies 94 are spaced such that the ingress and egress space 110 is of a sufficient size to provide access to the building enclosure 60.

OPERATION OF FIG. 1

The apparatus of the present invention located and constructed within the plant site 50 is particularly constructed and positioned to facilitate the construction of house structures to be transported and installed at a remote jobsite via a trailer apparatus or the like. One trailer apparatus which is constructedfor removing house frameworks and finished house structures from the support assemblies and transporting the house structures either to various predetermined locations within the plant site 50 or for transporting the completed house structure to a remote jobsite for installation on a foundation was disclosed in detail in the Applicants co-pending application entitled APPARA- TUS FOR TRANSPORTING HOUSE STRUCTURES OR THE LIKE, filed on Dec. 13, 1972, Ser. No. 314,806, referred to before. The construction and operation of the trailer apparatus for moving the frameworks from the building enclosure 60 and positioning the frameworks in a supported position on one of the outside support assemblies 94 and subsequently removing one of the finished house frameworks from one of the outside support assemblies 9'4 to a remote jobsite for installation was also described and disclosed in the Applicants co-pending application.

After the building enclosure 60 has been constructed and the inside support assemblies 88 positioned therein cooperating to form the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E, and, after the outside support assemblies 94 have been positioned and oriented about the building enclosure 60 forming the product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive, the houseframeworks 90 are constructed within the building enclosure 60, one house framework being constructed generally within each of the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E and supported on the inside support assembly 88 located therein. When the construction of one of the house frameworks 90 within one of the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E has been completed, the sliding doors 78 of the product door opening 74 encompassed via a portion of the product construction bay hving the completed house framework 90 supported therein are moved to an opened position, and a trailer apparatus or the like is maneuvered through the opening provided via the product door opening 74 to a position wherein a portion of the trailer apparatus or the like is disposed generally beneath the constructed house framework 90 (three trailer assemblies are shown in FIG. 1 in dashed-lines disposed at various locations for the purpose of clarity of description, each of the three trailer apparatus shown in FIG. 1 being designated via the general reference numeral 112).

Assuming that the'house framework 90 constructed and disposed within the product construction bay A has been completed, for example, the trailer apparatus 112 is maneuvered through the opening in the second wall 64 provided via the product door opening 74 disposed within the product construction bay A to a position wherein a portion of the trailer apparatus 112 is disposed beneath the constructed house framework 90 in the product construction bay A, as diagrammatically indicated in FIG. 1. The trailer apparatus 112 is then positioned to lift the house framework 90 from the inside support assembly 88 within the product construction bay A and subsequently remove the constructed house structure 90 from the product construction bay A through the poduct door opening 74 in a general direction 114, thereby removing the constructed house framework 90 from the product construction bay A so that another house framework 90 can be constructed within the product construction bay A7,

After the trailer apparatus 112 has removed the constructed house framework 90 from the product construction bay A, the trailer apparatus is then maneuvered and positioned to dispose the removed house framework 90 on one of the outside support assemblies 94 within one of the product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive. For example, the trailer apparatus 112 can be maneuvered and positioned to dispose the removed house framework 90 in a supporting position generally on the outside support assembly 94 of the product finishing area 1. In this example, the trailer apparatus 112 having the house framework 90 supported thereon is aligned with the outside support assembly 94 and moved in a general direction 116 through the outside support assembly 94 to a position wherein the completed house framework 90 is disposed generally above the outside support assembly 94 of the product finishing area 1 in a position, as diagrammatically indicated in FIG 1. In this position, the trailer apparatus 112 is positioned to lower the completed house framework 90 onto the outside support assembly 94in a supporting position thereon.

After the trailer apparatus 112 has disposed the constructed house framework 90 on the outside support assembly 94 within the product finishing area 1, the trailer apparatus 112 is then maneuvered in a general direction 118 removing the trailer apparatus from beneath the house framework 90, the trailer apparatus 112 being maneuvered generally within the space defined via the distance 108 between the west boundary line 58 and the first group 102 of outside support assemblies 94. The trailer apparatus 112 is then backed, maneuvered and positioned beneath a finished house framework 90 supported on one of the outside support assemblies 94 disposed within one of the produce finishing areas 2 through 10, inclusive, or backed and maneuvered into a position wherein a portion of the trailer apparatus 112 is disposed generally beneath one of the finished house structures 90 supported on one of the outside support assemblies 94 located within one of the product finishing areas 11 through 20, inclusive.

Assuming the finished house framework 90 in the product finishing area 13 is to be removed, the trailer apparatus 112 is maneuvered in the general direction 120 disposing a portion of the trailer apparatus 112 beneath the house framework 90 supported within the product finishing area 13. The trailer apparatus 112 is then positioned to lift and raise the house framework 90 from the outside support assembly 94 of the product finishing area 13. After the house framework 90 has been lifted from its supporting engagement with the outside support assembly 94, and supported on a portion of the trailer apparatus 112, the trailer apparatus 112 is then manuevered in a general direction 122 removing the finished house structure from the product finishing area 13, the trailer apparatus 112 being further maneuvered through the ingress and egress space 110 transportingly carrying the finished, completed house structure to a remote jobsite for installation.

Thus, the outside support assemblies 94 of the first group 102 are positioned with respect to the building enclosure 60 and with respect to the west boundary line 58 such that the trailer apparatus can be moved through the outside support assemblies 94 and positioned for unloading the house framework within one of the product finishing areas 1 through 10, inclusive, and such that the trailer 112 can further be maneuvered within the space formed via the distance between the first group 102 and the west boundary line 58 and subsequently backed into a loading position disposing a portion of the trailer apparatus 112 beneath one of the finished house structures supported on one of the other outside support assemblies 94 of the first group 102. Thus, the outside support assemblies 94 of the first group 102 are each positioned with respect to the building enclosure 60 and with respect to the west boundary line 58 of the plant site 50 such that the finished house structure supported within any one of the product finishing areas 1 through 10, inclusive, can be picked up or loaded onto the trailer apparatus 112 from either end of the housing structure 90 via maneuvering the trailer apparatus either in the space provided generally between the first group 102 and the west boundary line 58 formed via the distance 108 therebetween or by maneuvering the trailer apparatus 1 12 generally within the finishing material aisle 106 between the first group 102 and the building enclosure 60. This particular positioning of the first group 102 of the product finishing areas 1 through 10, inclusive, is particularly desirable for facilitating the loading and the unloading of house structures constructed to be loaded from either end or for facilitating the loading and unloading of house structures constructed such that they can only be loaded onto a trailer apparatus or the like from one so-called load end of the house structure. The outside support assemblies 94 of the second group 104 are positioned near the north boundary line 52 of the plant site 50 such that the trailer apparatus 112 must be maneuvered within the product material finishing aisle 106 to load and unload house structures from any one of the product finishing areas 11 through 20, inclusive.

During the manufacture of the house frameworks 90 within the building enclosure 60, various carpentry and small component or sub-assembly type operations are carried on generally within the area 86, various components and sub-assemblies of the house frameworks constructed within the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E being transported generally from the area 86 to particular product construction bays utilizing the framework material aisles 84, thereby facilitating the flow of material generally within the building enclosure 60 and increasing the production efficiency of each of the house frameworks 90 constructed within product construction bays A, B, C, D" and E. Further, the framework material aisles 84 are utilized by inspectors for inspecting the quality and progress of the construction work being carried on in the product construction bays A, B, C, D and E, the inventory indicia associated with each of the product construction bays, that is, the inventory indicia A, B," C, D and E, being utilized .by the inspector to uniquely identify the particular house' framework 90 for inventory, production and quality control purposes.

As soon as the house framework 90 has been constructed within one of the product construction bays A, B, C, D and 37 E, it is removed and supportingly disposed within one of the product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive, where the house framework 90 remains in a supported position during the finishing of the house framework. The finished house structure is then transported to a remote location for installation at a jobsite. It is particularly significant to note that the method and apparatus of the present invention utilize a trailer apparatus for removing the house frameworks 90 from the building enclosure 60, positioning the removed house frameworks 90 within the product finishing areas, and removing the finished house structures from the product finishing areas for transporting to a jobsite, thereby maximizing the utilization of a trailer apparatus in a manner facilitating the product flow within the plant facility and from the plant facility to provide a more efficient and more economical overall production operation.

During the operation of the method and apparatus of the present invention, the finishing material aisles 106 generally between the first group 102 and the second group 104 of the product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive, are also utilized for delivering the various finishing materials, components and sub-assemblies to the house structures supported withineach of the product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive, via a forklift type of vehicle or the like. The finishing material aisles 106 provide a continuous space between the building enclosure 60 and the product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive, so that the various finishing materials can be delivered to preselected product finishing areas in a faster, more efficient and more economical manner. It should also be noted that the space provided via the finishing material aisle 106 is also utilized during one aspect of the operation of the method and apparatus of the present invention for inspecting the work quality and progress at each of the product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive, the inspection being accom plished in a faster, more economical manner since the finishing material aisle 106 provides a continuous space from which the houseframeworks 90 supported within the various product finishing areas 1 through 20, inclusive, can be easily and quickly observed via a single inspector.

, EMBODIMENT OF FIG. 2

Shown in FIG. 2 is a modified plant site 50a enclosed within boundary lines 52a, 54a, 56a and 58a, the plant site 50a being constructed for operation in a manner similar to that described in detail before with respect to the apparatus of the plant site 50 shown in FIG. 1. A building enclosure 60a is disposed within the plant site 50a, the building enclosure 60a being constructed similar to the building enclosure 60, shown in FIG 1, and

described in detail before, the salient difference being that the first and the second sides 62a and 64a each include extended side portions 130. More particularly, one of the extended side portions 130 is connected adjacent each end of the side 62a and one extended side portion 130 is connected and extends from each end of the second side 64a, thereby extending the width of the building enclosure 60a generally between the opposite sides 66a and 68a. Further, the opposite sides 66a and 68a each include a plurality of spaced product door openings 74 formed therethrough, each of the product door openings 74 having sliding doors 78 disposed and supported therein, in a manner similar to that described with respect to the product door openings 74 and the sliding doors 78 formed through the first and the second side 62 and 64 shown in FIG. 1.

In one preferred embodiment, the building enclosure 60a is initially constructed to include the extended side portions 130 and the product door opening 74 formed through the third and the fourth sides 66a and 68a, respectively, and, in one other preferred form, the building enclosure at a particular plant site can be initially constructed similar to the building enclosure 60, shown in FIG. 1 and described in detail before, and the sides 66 and 68 of the building enclosure 60 can subsequently be removed, the extended side portions 130 installed and constructed and the modified third and fourth sides 66a and 68a can then be constructed with a product door opening 74 formed therethrough to exw pand the plant facility and form the building enclosure 60a. Thus, the building enclosure and apparatus of the plant site of thepresent invention .are also constructed such that the plant facilities are easily expanded to compensate for increased production requirements, the building enclosures and apparatus of the present invention also being constructed in a manner requiring a reduced permanent facility investment so that temporary decreases in plant production have a substantially lessened effect on the overall profit-making capability of the plant facilities, an important consideration in the modular house structure industry.

The building enclosure 60a is thus constructed and operates in a manner similar to that described before with respect to the building enclosure 60 of FIG. 1, one other difference being that the building enclosure 60a has an increased area encompassed via the enclosed space for accommodating six. additional product construction bays, the additional product construction bays being designated in FIG. 2 via the encircled letter references F, G, H, I, J and K. Each of the product construction bays A," B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J and K are formed in a manner similar to the product construction bays within the building enclosure 60, shown in FIG. 1 and described in detail before, each of the product construction bays A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J and K of the building enclosure 60a defining a space and having a portion encompassing one of the product door openings 74 and each being spaced to provide framework material aisles 84 extending therebetween (the outline of each of the product construction bays A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, l," J and K not being shown nor designated in FIG. 2 for the purpose of clarity particularly since the construction and operation thereof corresponds to the construction and the operation of the product construction bays of the building enclosure 60 shown in FIG. 1 and described in detail before).

The modified apparatus disposed, constructed and operating within the plant site 50a. also includes twenty additional product finishing areas, the additional product finishing areas being designated in FIG. 2 via the reference numerals 21 through 40, inclusive, and the area encompassed by the house framework 90 supported within each of the additional product finishing areas being generally designated in FIG. 2 via a dashedline (only some of the house frameworks 90 being indicated via a reference numeral in FIG. 2). The additional product finishing areas 21 through 30, inclusive, are generally aligned and extend along the third side 66a of the building enclosure 60a generally parallel thereto and spaced the predetermined distance 100 therefrom, thereby providing an extended additional portion of the finishing material aisle 106 generally between the product finishing areas 21 through 30, inclusive, and the third side 66a of the building enclosure 60a. The product finishing areas 21 through form a third group 132. Further, the additional product finishing areas 21 through 30 are spaced a predetermined distance 108 from the east boundary line 56a, thereby providing a plurality of product finishing areas positioned and cooperating to facilitate the loading and unloading of constructed house frameworks and finished house structures in a manner similar to that described before with respect to the first group 102 of product finishing areas 1 through 10, inclusive, as shown in FIGS. 1 and described in detail before.

The additional product finishing areas 31 through 40, inclusive, are generally aligned and extend generally parallel with the second side 64a of the building enclosure 60a, the additional product finishing areas 31 through 40, inclusive, forming the fourth group 134. The fourth group 134 has one end portion disposed generally near the south boundary line 54a, in a manner and for reasons similar to that described before with respect to the second group 104 of product finishing areas 11 through 20, inclusive, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 and as described in detail before with respect to FIG. 1. The fourth group 134 of product finishing areas 31 through 40, inclusive, are also spaced the predetermined distance 100 from the second side 64a of the building enclosure 60a thereby providing yet another additional or extended portion of the finishing material aisle 106, the finishing material aisle 106 of the plant site 50a extending generally about the entire outer periphery of the building enclosure 60a formed by the wall 59 thereof.

The apparatus of. the plant site 50a will operate in a manner substantially similar to the apparatus described before with respect to the plant site 50, as shown in FIG. 1. The house frameworks are constructed within the product construction bays A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J and K within the building enclosure 60a and, when a particular house framework has been completed, the house framework is removed from the product construction bay and supportingly disposed on one of the outside support assemblies (not shown in FIG. 2) within one of the product finishing areas 1 through 40, inclusive. The additional product finishing areas also include the inventory indicia associated therewith so that the house framework and the finished house structure can be uniquely identified at the various stages of construction within the plant facilities and after the finished house structure has been transported and installed at the jobsite, in a manner and for reasons similar to that described before with respect to FIG. 1.

Changes may be made in the construction and the operation of the various components and assemblies and in the various steps of the present invention as described herein without departing from the spirit and the scope of the invention as defined in the following claims.

What is claimed is:

1. Apparatus for constructing house structures of the type to be transported to a jobsite via a trailer apparatus or the like for installation, the house structures including a house framework and finishing, the apparatus comprising:

a building enclosure having a wall defining an enclosed space and forming a portion of an outer periphery of the building enclosure, and more than one product door opening formed through portions of the building enclosure wall, each product door opening defining an opening through the building enclosure wall of a size sufficient to accommodate the removal of a house framework therethrough via a portion of a trailer apparatus or the like, more than one product construction bay defined within a portion of the enclosed space, each product construction bay having a portion disposed adjacent and encompassing at least one of the product door openings; plurality of inside support means, one inside support means disposed within each product construction bay and each inside support means constructed for supporting a house framework constructed thereon; and plurality of outside support means, each outside support means disposed near the building enclosure and spaced a predetermined distance therefrom, and each outside support means constructed for receiving and supporting a house framework removed from one of .the product construction bays via the trailer apparatus or the like during the finishing of the removed house framework.

2. The apparatus of claim 1 defined further to include a predetermined number of outside support means at least substantially equal to the number of inside support means multiplied .by the ratio of the period of time required to complete the finishing of each house framework to the period of time required to construct each house framework within the building enclosure, thereby providing sufficient outside support means supporting the house frameworks constructed within the building enclosure and subsequently removed to and supported via the outside support means.

3. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein the predetermined distance between the outside support means and the building enclosure defines a finishing material aisle of a size sufficient to accommodate the transporting of finishing materials to the outside support means.

4. The apparatus of claim 3 wherein the building enclosure is generally rectangularly shaped, and the building enclosure wall includes: a first side, a second side, a third side and a fourth side, the sides interconnected to form the wall of the rectangularly shaped building enclosure; and wherein some of the product door openings are formed through the first side and some of the remaining product door openings are formed through the second side, the second side being disposed generally opposite the first side, and wherein the adjacent product construction bays along the first side are spaced apart a predetermined distance, the adjacent product construction bays along the second side are spaced apart a predetermined distance and the product construction bays along the first side are spaced a predetermined distance from the product construction bays along the second side, the spacings between the product construction bays within the building enclosure forming an interconnected framework material aisle of a size sufficient to accommodate the transporting of framework material to each of the product construction bays.

5. The apparatus of claim 4 defined further to include product door openings formed through portions of the third and the fourth sides of the building enclosure, the product construction bays along the third side being spaced apart a predetermined distance and spaced a predetermined distance'from the adjacent portions of the product construction bays along the first and the second sides, and the product construction bays along the fourth side being spaced apart a predetermined distance and spaced a predetermined distance from the adjacent portions of the product construction bays along the first andthe second sides, the spacings between the product construction bays within the building enclosure forming the interconnected framework material aisle.

6. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein some of the outside support means are defined further as being disposed and constructed providing access via the opposite ends thereof for the trailer apparatus to accomodate the loading and the unloading of the house structures.

7. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein some of the outside support means are disposed in a first group oriented in substantial alignment extending generally parallel to a portion of the building enclosure wall; and some others of the outside support means are disposed in a second group oriented in substantial alignment extending generally parallel to another portion of the building enclosure wall.

8. The apparatus of claim 7 wherein some others of the outside support means are disposed in a third group oriented in substantial alignment extending generally parallel to yet another portion of the building enclosure wall and the remaining outside support means are disposed in a fourth group oriented in substantial alignment extending generally parallel to still another portion of the building enclosure wall.

9. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein each outside support means is disposed generally within a separate area, each separate area defining a product finishing area, and wherein each product finishing area and each product construction bay is identified via a unique inventory indicia for maintaining the identifiability of each house framework constructed within one of the product construction bays, finished within one of the product finishing areas and subsequently transported to the jobsite for installation.

10. A method for constructing house structures, including the house framework and the finishing of the house framework to form the house structure, for transporting and installing at a jobsite, wherein the house framework and the house structure are each movable via a trailer apparatus or the like, the method comprising the steps of:

constructing the house framework in a product construction bay located generally within a building a enclosure;

moving the constructed house framework from the building enclosure to a productfinishing area disposed near and spaced a distance from the building enclosure; supporting the house framework at a predetermined position within the product finishing area; and

finishing the house framework to form the completed house structure for subsequent removal and installation at a jobsite.

11. The method of claim 10 defined further to include the step of:

identifying each product construction bay and each product finishing area with a unique inventory indicia for maintaining the identifiability of each house framework and finished house structure.

12. A method for constructing house structures, including the house framework and the finishing of the house framework to form the completed house structure, for transporting and installing at a jobsite, wherein the house framework and the finished house structure are each movable via a trailer apparatus or the like, the method comprising the steps of:

constructing the house frameworks generally within a building enclosure; moving a portion of the trailer apparatus or the like beneath a constructed house framework;

supporting the constructed house framework on a portion of the trailer apparatus or the like; transporting the constructed house framework from the building enclosure via the trailer apparatus or the like to a product finishing area located a predetermined distance from the building enclosure; unloading the house framework at a predetermined product finishing area;

finishing the house frameworks supported within the product finishing areas;

moving a portion of the trailer apparatus or the like beneath a predetermined finished house structure disposed within a predetermined product finishing area;

supporting the finished house structure on a portion of the trailer apparatus or the like; and transporting the finished house structures to a predetermined jobsite for installation.

13. A method for constructing house structures for installation at a remote jobsite utilizing a trailer apparatus or the like, the house structures including a house framework and the finishing of the house framework to form the completed house structure, the house framework being constructed within a building enclosure and finished within a product finishing area located at a predetermined distance remote from the building enclosure, the method comprising the steps of:

moving a portion of the trailer apparatus or the like beneath a portion of the constructed house frameworks within the building enclosure;

supporting the constructed house framework on a portion of the trailer apparatus or the like; transporting the constructed house framework from the building enclosure via the trailer apparatus or the like to a predetermined product finishing area;

unloading the house framework in the predetermined termined jobsite for installation.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4110952 *Sep 7, 1976Sep 5, 1978North Oakland Development CorporationHome building method
US4187659 *Dec 29, 1977Feb 12, 1980North Oakland Development CorporationHome building method and apparatus
US4450617 *May 14, 1981May 29, 1984The Dillon CompanySystem for and assembly of a prefabricated home module
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Classifications
U.S. Classification29/430, 29/721, 29/791
International ClassificationB28B15/00
Cooperative ClassificationB28B15/00
European ClassificationB28B15/00