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Publication numberUS3809487 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 7, 1974
Filing dateOct 4, 1972
Priority dateOct 4, 1972
Publication numberUS 3809487 A, US 3809487A, US-A-3809487, US3809487 A, US3809487A
InventorsFlanagan R
Original AssigneeAmerace Esna Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Resilient retainer system for pavement marker assembly
US 3809487 A
Abstract
In a pavement marker assembly in which a signal device is affixed to a base member, a retainer system capable of withstanding the rigors of roadway surface use but easily released for removal of the signal device. The retainer of the system includes elements of U-shaped configuration in which one of the arms of each U-shaped element is resiliently deflected relative to the other and is secured to the base member while the other of the arms of each U-shaped element secures the signal device to the base member. An improved base member accommodates snowplow blades which are angled laterally with respect to their direction of travel.
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1 I 3,8u9,4s7

Flanagan ay 7, 1974 [54] RESILIENT RETAINER SYSTEM FOR 2,941,447 6/1960 Abbott 350/97 x VEM T MARKER ASSEMBLY 3,519,327 7/1970 Nakajirna 350/97 [75] Inventor: Robert M. Flanagan, Summit, NJ. Primary Examiner Ni]e Byers JR [73] Assignee: Amer-ace Esna Corporation, New Almmey, g or Firm-Samuelson & Jacob York, NY.

[57] ABSTRACT 22 F 1 Oct 1972 In a pavement marker assembly in which a signal de- [21] Appl. No.: 294,809 vice is affixed to a base member, a retainer system capable of withstanding the rigors of roadway surface [52] US. Cl. 404/15 but easily.released for Emu/a1 of h Signal [51] Int Cl E0" 11/00 vice. The retainer of the system includes elements of ushaped configuration in which one of the arms of F f 4 l [58] Md 0 04/9 4 15 350/97 each U-shaped element 15 resihently deflected relat1ve to the other and is secured to the base member while [56] References Cited the other of the'arms of each U-shaped element se- UNITED STATES PATENTS cures the signal device to the base member. An im- 3,587,416 6/1971 F1anagan..' 404/9 rov d ba m ber accommodates snowplow blades 11545146 7/1925 404/9 X a which are angled laterally with respect to their direc- 1,574,738 2/1926 Cretney 404/15 tion of'trave] 2,603,909 7/1952 Pettibone... 404/15 X 1,910,791 5 1933 Coppel 350 97 x 22 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures Pvo RESILIIENT RETAINER SYSTEM FOR PAVEMENT MARKER ASSEMBLY The present invention relates generally to pavement markers and pertains, more specifically, to roadway traffic markers that use signal devices which can be cleaned by the action of vehicular traffic on the roadway contacting the marker and which may be dismantled or replaced with relative ease when expired, worn or otherwise deteriorated.

Pavement markers have become more widely accepted as permanent installations for providing visible signals which mark traffic lanes and control the flow of traffic on roadways in connection with, or in place of, conventional painted traffic lines. While a large number of such markers employ reflectors which reflect specular light or light emanating from oncoming vehicles to provide a visible signal to the operators of such oncoming vehicles, other markers have been proposed which utilize an independent light source, such as an electric lamp located within the marker, to provide a signal visible from oncoming vehicles. The term signal device is employed herein to denote any such marker employing a reflector, a lamp or another light source, or any arrangement which provides the desired visible signal. Because of their greater optical effectiveness and longer life, such markers'have found wide use despite the fact that their initial cost has often been greater than the initial cost of conventional painted lines. It becomes apparent, then, that pavement markers which could be less costly to manufacture and which would have an extended life would be even more desirable.

A variety of structural arrangements has been suggested for rendering the signal devices of such pavement markers easily dismantled or selectively removable or replaceable. For example, a signal device employing a lamp may be dismantled to remove a cover or lens and replace either the cover or an expired lamp. A reflector or an internally illuminated device can be replaced when worn, expired or otherwise deteriorated. ln several of these arrangements a base member of relatively high strength material such as a metal, is permanently affixed to the roadwayv surface and a signal device in the form of a reflector body of synthetic resin material is affixed to the base member for selective removal and replacement without destruction of the base member. In some of these arrangements, the base member has been provided with inclined ramps for protecting the reflector body from brutal encounters with snowplowblades when these pavement markers are used in geographical areas where a significant amount of snow is likely to fall upon roadways.

Among the most commercially successful pavement markers developed recently is a marker constructed with a shell-like body of molded synthetic resin material filled with a filler material for reinforcing the shelllike body against the forces applied externally by contact with oncoming vehicles. These pavement markers have been permanently installed directly upon the roadway surface by affixing them to the pavement with a suitable-adhesive. It has also been suggested that such pavement markers be permanently affixed to metal base members with an adhesive. It would be ad-- vantageous, then, to have available a pavement marker assembly which employs a removable signal device, and more particularly, a signal device in the form of a reflector member of a type having afilled shell-like body assembled with a permanently installed, high strength base member in such a way that the reflector member, when worn or broken, is readily disassembled from the base member and replaced with a more ser viceable reflector member.

It is therefore an important object of the invention to provide a pavement marker in which a signal device is held in assembled relationship with a permanently installed base member by means of a retainer which en ables ready disassembly of the signal device.

Another object of the invention is to provide a pavement marker in which a signal device is retained in assembled relationship with a base member by means of a'retaining system capable of effectively withstanding the rigors of roadway surface use, including contact with snowplow blades as well as contact with ordinary vehicular traffic, yet enabling ready removal of the signal device as required.

Still another object of the invention is to provide a retaining system of the type described which is simple in construction and enables quick assembly and disassembly of the signal device and an installed base member without the use of special tools or elaborate procedures and techniques.

A further object of the invention is to provide an improved base member for a pavement marker assembly especially suited for use in areas where encounters with snowplow blades are likely.

The above objects, as well as still further objects and advantages, are attained by the invention which may be described briefly as providing, in a pavement marker for establishing a marking visible from an oncoming vehicle on a roadway surface, the pavement markerincluding a base member of relatively .high strength material, such as a metal, adapted to extend in a direction which will be parallel with the roadway surface when the base member engages the roadway surface, the base member having a lower surface adapted to be affixed to the roadway surface and an upper surface, the lower surface extending longitudinally between a forward portion of the base member adapted to face the oncoming traffic and an opposite rearward portion, and laterally between longitudinally extending opposite side portions, the lower surface having an area sufficient to enable the base member to withstand contact with oncoming vehicles without failure or detachment from the roadway, and a signal device having an upper surface, a lower surface and an obverse surface between the upper and lower surfaces, the signal device extending longitudinally between opposite forward and rearward portions and laterally between opposite side portions, means for affixing the signal device relative to the base member and the roadway surface for selective removal of at least a portion thereof without destruction of the base member, the affixing means comprising a pair of retainer elements, each retainer element having first and second arms extending generally longitudinally between opposite ends and spaced apart laterally, the arms being interconnected adjacent one of the ends of each arm such that the arms are resiliently deflectable relative to one another in an altitudinal direction, first means for engaging the first arm of each retainer element with the reflector member adjacent each side portion thereof, and second means for engaging thesecond arm of each retainer element with the base member adjacent each side portion thereof, the first and second means being located relative to one another in an altitudinal direction such that the first and second arms of each retainer element will be resiliently deflected relative to one another in an altitudinal directiori to establish a resilient retaining force urging the signal device downwardly toward the roadway surface.

The invention will be more fully understood, while still further objects and advantages thereof will becme apparent, in the following detailed description of preferred embodiments of the invention illustrated in the accompanying drawing, inwhich:

FIG. 1 is a top plan view of a pavement marker assembly employing a retainer system constructedin accordance with the invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged fragmentary side elevational view of the pavement marker assembly of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is. an enlarged cross-sectional view taken along line 3-3 of FIG. l;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary end elevational view taken in the direction indicated in FIG. 2;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged, longitudinal cross-sectional view of a signal devicein'the-form of a reflector member employed in the pavement marker assembly of FIG.

F IG. 6 is a slightly reducedbottom plan view of the reflector member of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is an end elevational view of the retainer employed in the pavement markerassembly of- FIG. 1;

FIG. 8 is 'a 'plan view, partially broken away, of another pavement marker assembly employing a retainer system constructed in accordance with the invention; and

FIG. 9 is a side elevatlonal view, partially sectioned, of the pavement marker assembly of FIG. 8.

Referring now to the drawing, and especially to FIGS. 1 through 4 thereof, a pavement marker assembly employing a retainersystem constructed in accordance with the invention is illustrated generally at 10 and is seen to include a base member 12 constructed of a relativelyhigh strength material, such as metal, and a signal device in the form of a reflector member 14 affixed to the base member 12 by means shown in the form of a retainer system 16; a The-base member 12 extends longitudinally from a forward portion 20 to an opposite rearward portion 22 and laterally between opposite side portions 23 carrying sidewalls 24 and 26 and spaced apart by an interconnecting web 28.

As best seen in FIGS. 2 and 3, pavement marker assembly 10 is adapted to be installed upon a roadway 30 and the base member 12 has a basal plane P which extends in a direction parallel with the surface of the roadway 30, when the lower surface 32 of the base member 12 is affixed to the roadway surface. The sidewalls 24 and 26 of the base member 12 are provided with securing means in the form of depending ribs 34 which project downwardly below the basal plane P and extend longitudinally to establish lower surface portions in the form of vertical surfaces 36 extending in planes generally'perpendicular to the basal plane P and parallel to one another longitudinally along the body of the base member 12. Ribs 34 are engaged with complementary grooves 38in the roadway 30 to affix the p'avement marker ,to the roadway surface, preferably through the use of an adhesive. The additional area gained by the vertical surfaces 36 of the longitudinal ribs 34 provides the additional resistance to shear "forces placed upon pavement marker 10 when the marker is contacted by a snowplow blade to prevent the marker from being torn from the roadway surface.

The base member 12 has an upper surface 40 which, in this instance, includes a planar platform 42 located upon the web 28 between a forward laterally extending rib 46 and a rearward laterally extending rib 48. Reflecform. In this instance, the contour of such portions 54 is planar to match the planar contour of the platform 42. Reflector member 14 extends longitudinally be tween opposite forward and rearward portions 56 and 58, respectively, and laterally between opposite side portions 60 and-62, respectively, and has an upper surface 64 spaced from the lower surface 52 thereof in an altitudinal direction to provide at least one obverse light receiving surface 66 for receiving incident light from oncoming vehicles and reflecting such light to establish a marking visible at night. A second such obverse surface 68 may also be provided at the rear of the reflector member 14. Thus, the reflector member l4 provides a reflector raised above the surface of the roadway 30 in order to provide a marking which may be viewed effectively at reasonable viewing distances. Additionally,- the obverse surface 66 is advantageously placed at an acute angle to the roadway surface so that the face of the reflector will be cleaned by wiping contact with the tires of oncoming vehicles.

Turning now to FIGS. 5 and 6, the reflector member 14 is preferably of the type which has a shell-like body including a shell 70 of synthetic resin material having at least one and preferably two light transmitting portions 72 which provide the obverse surfaces 66 and 68 of the reflector. The reverse surface 74 of each portion 72 is provided with a retrodirective reflector of the cube-corner type. In this instance, the shell 70 is molded of a light-transmitting synthetic resin, such as methyl-methacrylate, and is constructed of two like parts 76 and 78 joined together at 79. In order to reinforce the molded synthetic resin shell 70 against forces applied to the shell by contact with oncoming vehicles, the shell is filled, or potted, with a relatively rigid filler material seen in the form of a solid core 80 which is contiguous with the inner surface of the shell 70 and serves to reinforce the shell and provide a solid, rugged structure capable ofwithstanding forces applied to the reflector member 14 during service. Since it is desirable, from a structural standpoint, that the core 80 be contiguous with the shell 70 and no voids exist between the shell and the core, reverse surface 74 is coated with a light reflecting material 82, such as by metallizing the reverse surface in a now well-known manner, to assure that the reflecting elements will perform their assigned function.

In order to provide the lower surface 52 of the reflector member 14 with surface portions 54 having a contour matching the contour of the platform 42 of the base member 12, the reflector member preferably is provided with a base plate 84 which includes a plurality of surface portions 86 having the desired configuration, in this instance, the desired configuration being flat and planar. The base plate 84 is secured in the reflector member 14, at least in part, by the filler material of the core 80 by virtue of extension of the 'filler material through apertures 88 provided in raised portions 90 of the base plate 84. The raised portions 90 establish an undulate cross-sectional configuration, as viewed in FIG. 5, which provides the base plate 84' with sufficient rigidity, while establishing the raised portions 90 for securement in the filler material and the lowermost portions 86 for a basal support for the reflector member. The peripheral portions 94 of base plate 84 extend beneath the corresponding peripheral edge 96 of the shell 70 so that both the shell and the core 80 are supported upon the base plate 84. Since the base plate 84 rests securely upon the platform 42, by virtue of the complementary configuration of portions 86 of the plate 84, forces applied to the shell 70 by contact with oncoming vehicles are transmitted through the core 80 as well as through the shell 70 to the base member 12 and any tendency to break the shell away from the core as a result of uneven support surfaces between the reflector member 14 and the base member 12 is essentially eliminated.

In fabricating the reflector member 14, the filler material, in a viscous liquid form, is first poured into the shell 70. Then the base plate 84 is placed on the filler. As the base plate becomes seated in place with peripheral portions 94 juxtaposed with corresponding peripheral edge 96 of the shell 70, the filler material will extrude through apertures 88, while air is vented through small passages 92 in the base plate. Upon hardening, the extension of the filler material through apertures 88 will aid in securing the base plate to the shell. Such materials as epoxy compounds have been found desirable for the formation of the core 80.

' In the above outlined method of fabrication, the base plate 84 actually aids in assuring that the filler material, while still in liquid form, fills the shell 70 without voids. In order to seat the base plate in place in the shell, the base plate is urged against the filler material toward the shell, as by merely allowing the weight of the base plate to pull the base plate toward the shell. As the base plate is so urged toward the shell, the pressure upon the filler material forces the filler material to entirely fill the shell, thereby eliminating any harmful voids.

As best seen in FIGS. 1 and 3, the reflector member 14, when placed upon the platform 42 of the base member 12, is located longitudinally between the lat-.

eral ribs 46 and 48 and laterally between the longitudinally extending sidewalls 24 and 26 of the base member 12, and is thus fixed relative to the roadway surface.

The reflector member 14 is secured relative to the base member 12 by means of the retainer system 16 having a retainer 100 which includes a pair of retainer elements 102, each having a first arm 104 and a second arm 106. The first and second arms 104 and 106, respectively, extend generally longitudinally between opposite ends and are spaced apart laterally by an integral lateral leg 108 which interconnects arms 104 and 106 adjacent one of the ends of each arm such that the arms and the leg 108 establish a Ushaped configuration. The U-shaped retainer elements 102 are fabricated of a resilient material, such as steel wire, so that the arms 104 and 106 may be resiliently deflected relative to one another in an altitudinal direction, that is, in a direction which is generally perpendicular to the longitudinal extent of the arms 104 and 106 and the lateral extent of the leg 108.

Means are provided for engaging the first arm 104 of each retainer element 102 with the reflector member 14 adjacent each side' portion 60 and 62 of the reflector member, these first means being illustrated in the form of 'a bar 110 which is integral with the. first arms 104 of the retainer elements 102 at the opposite ends 112 of the bar so that the retained elements 102 are joined together by the-bar 110 in a unitary structure. As best seen in FIGS. 1 and 3, the bar 110 extends along the upper surface 64 of the reflector member 14 between the opposite side portions 60 and 62 of the reflector member. Preferably, a cap plate 114 is interposed between the bar 110 and the upper surface 64 of the reflector member 14 and the bar is received within a channel 116 inthe cap plate 114 which, in turn, is located within a lateral recess 118 in the upper surface of the reflector member (also see FIG. 5).

As best seen in FIGS. 1, 2 and 4, second means are provided for engaging the second arm 106 of each retainer element 102 with the base member 12 adjacent each side portion 23 thereof, the second means being illustrated in the form of ears 120 projecting from the outer surface 122 of each sidewall 24 and 26 and establishing a downwardly facing shoulder 124. The elevation of the channel 116 is such that when the reflector member 14 is in place upon the platform 42 the channel lies above the shoulders 124 provided by the ears 120; hence, when the bar 110 is placed in the channel 116 and the U-shaped retainer elements 102 straddle the sidewalls 24 and 26 with the first arms 104 lying along the inner surface 126 of each sidewall and the second arms 106 lying along the outer surface 122 of each sidewall, the bar 110 is located above the shoulders 124 and the second arms 106 must be deflected downwardly, in an altitudinal direction, relative to the first arms 104 until the second arms 106 are captured beneath the shoulders 124 provided by the ears 120. In order to facilitate such downward deflection of the second arms 106, the ears 120 are provided with a beveled surface 128 which urges the second arms outwardly as the arms 106 are pushed downwardly so that installation of the retainer 100 can be accomplished by merely pushing downwardly upon the second arms 106.

The resilient deflection of the first and second arms 104 and 106 relative to one another in an altitudinal direction establishes a resilient retaining force which urges the reflector member 14 downwardly against the base member 12. The cap plate 114 tends to spread this retaining force over essentially the entire upper surface 64 of the reflector member 14 to reduce the possibility of a concentration of stress within a limited portion of the shell of the reflector member. In addition, the cap plate 114 will protect the upper surface 64 of the reflector member 14 against excessive abrasion arising from the contact between oncoming vehicles and the reflector member. The bar 110 is also protected from excessive abrasion by virtue of its location within the recess provided by the channel 116. In order to better distribute the downward force provided by the retainer when the retainer is installed as illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 4, the bar is normally bowed, as seen in FIG. 7, such that the central portion 130 of the bar is normally below the ends 112 of the bar. Installation of the retainer 100 will tend to deflect the bar 110 out of the bowed configuration and will thereby provide a downward force which is more evenly distributed along the length of the bar upon the reflector member 14. Removal of the retainer 100 for disassembly of the reflector member 14 from the base member 12 is achieved .by moving the second .arrns 106 outwardly to release the arms from beneath the ears 120. Thus, the reflector member 14 is readily replaced. 8

Pavement marker 10 is constructed for service in geographical locations where a significant amount of snow is likely to fall upon the roadway 30. Thus, the base member 12 isconstructed to protect the reflector member 14 from being gouged or stripped from the roadway surface by being stripped from the base member by an oncoming snowplow blade. To this end, the reflector member 14 is placed between the sidewalls 24 and ,26 withthe uppermost surface of the reflector member being no higher than, the uppermost extent of the sidewalls. Each of the sidewalls 24 and 26 is provided with an inclined ramp 134 which extends from the roadway surface at the forward portion of the pavement marker to a vertically uppermost portion 136 and 138, respectively, toward the rear of the marker. The uppermost portions 136 and 138 of the sidewalls 24 and 26, respectively, are at least as high as the uppermost surface of the cap plate 114 on the upper surface 64 of the reflector member so that as a snowplow blade 140 (illustrated in phantom in FIG. 1) approaches the reflector member 14, the blade will ride ally angled relative to their direction of travel so as to make an acute angle A with'the direction of travel D. Usually, acute angle A is of the order of magnitude of about 60. Because of this angle A, leading portion 142 of the snowplow blade 140 will traverse uppermost portion 136 of the sidewall 24 ahead of the traverse of trailing portion 144 of the snowplow blade 140 across the uppermost portion 138 of the sidewall 26. It has been found that if the leading portion 142 of the snowplow blade 140 is allowed to leave the uppermost portion 136 of the sidewall 24 prior to the arrival of the trailing portion 144 of the snowplow blade at the up permost portion 138 of the other sidewall 26 the snowplow blade 140 will experience a sudden drop which can result in the trailing portion 144 exerting a considerable blow upon the corresponding inclined ramp 134 of sidewall 26. In order to prevent such a crushing blow,.and concomitant damage to the ramp, the uppermost portions 136 and 138 of the sidewalls 24 and 26 are extended rearwardly a distance great enough to assure that as leading portion 142 of the snowplow blade 140 leaves the uppermost portion 136 of the sidewall 24, the trailing portion 144 of the snowplow blade'will be engaged with the uppermost portion 138 of the other sidewall 26. Thus, as seen in FIG. 1, when point L on the leading portion 142 of the snowplow blade 140 leaves uppermost portion 136, point T on the trailing portion 144 of the snowplow blade is already engaged with the uppermost portion 138.

The base member 12 must be fabricated of a material strong enough to withstand contact with the snowplow blade 140. It has been found that base members fabricated of pearlitic ductile iron are well suited to withstand the shock of contact with a snowplow blade and are rugged enough to remain serviceable for a long time without being worn away by contact with oncoming traflic, including snowplow blades. In the illustrated embodiment, the base member has been successfully fabricated in the form of a unitary casting of ductile iron, such as pearlitic ductile iron (ASTM A536-65T) or ferritic nodular iron (ASTM A536-67), which was then heat treated to obtain a core hardness of about 26 to 34 Rockwell C and the sidewalls, especially in the vicinity of the inclined ramps, were hardened either by induction or flame hardening, to a surface hardness of about 50 to 55 Rockwell C for a depth of about 0.050 to 0.100 inch. The above core hardness provides the toughness necessary to withstand brutal encounters with snowplow blades while the surface hardness is great enough to withstand the abrasion of the snowplow blade as it passes over the sidewalls. The base member has also successfully been fabricated by forging.

Turning now to FIGS. 8 and 9, another embodiment of the invention is illustrated in the form of a pavement 'marker 150. Pavement marker may be employed in areas where contact with snowplow blades is unlikely. In pavement marker 150, the base member 152 is fabricated from a flat plate 153 which provides an upper surface 154 with a portion providing a platform 156 and a lower surface 158 that can be adhered to a roadway surface 160 with an adhesive 162. Forward and rearward abutments are provided by laterally extending rails 164 struck up from the plate 153. Longitudinally extending sidewalls 166 are also struck upwardly from the plate 153 and are pierced to establish outwardly projecting tabs 168.

A- signal device in the form of a reflector member 170, having the same construction as reflector member 14 described above in connection with FIGS. 5 and 6, is placed on the platform 156 between the forward and rearward abutments provided by rails 164 and between the sidewalls 166. The reflector member 170 is affixed to the base member 152 by means of a retaining system similar to that described above in connection with FIGS. 1 through 7. A retainer 172 is provided with a pair of U-shaped retaining elements 174 each having a first and second arm 176 and 178 extending longitudinally and spaced apart laterally by an interconnecting leg 180. The U-shaped retainer elements 174 are interconnected by a bar 182 which extends laterally across the top of the reflector member 170. The bar 182 is received within a channel 184 in a cap plate 186 which is interposed between the bar 182 and the upper surface of the reflector member 170, and the U-shaped retainer elements 174 straddle the sidewalls 166 so that each first arm 176 is located between a side portion 188 of the reflector member 170 and a sidewall 166 of the base member 152 and each second arm 178 extends longitudinally along the outer surface 190 of a sidewall 166. The second arms 178 are each deflected downwardly, in an altitudinal direction, and are captured beneath a tab 168 such that a resultant resilient biasing force is exerted by the bar 182 in a downward direction to clamp the reflector member 170 in place upon the base member 152. Since the tabs 168 are angled outwardly from the sidewalls 166, the upper surface 192 of each tab is angled so as to urge the second arm 178 outwardly as the second arm is pushed downwardly to facilitate installation of the retainer 172. Removal of the retainer for disassembly of the reflector member 170 from the base member 152 is achieved by pushing the second arms 178 downwardly and outwardly to release the arms from beneath the tabs 168 and out of engagement with the shoulders provided by the lower surfaces of the tabs. Thus, the reflector member 170 is readily replaced.

It will be apparent that signal devices other than reflector members 14 or 170 may be used in connection with base members 12V or 152. Thus, for example, a pavement marker similar to assembly may employ a signal device in the form of a signal light assembly (not shown) in which a lamp cover or lens is retained in place by a retainer system similar to retainer system 16 for ready removal to enable replacement of the cover or replacement of an expired lamp within the light assembly.

The above detailed description of preferred embodiments of the invention is provided by way of example only Various details of design and construction may be modified without departing from the true spirit and scope of the invention as set forth in the appended claims.

The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:

1. In a pavement marker for establishing a marking visible from an oncoming vehicle on a roadway surface, said pavement marker including a base member of relatively high strength material, such as a metal, adapted to extend in a direction which will be parallel with the roadway surface when the base member engages the roadway surface,

said base member having a lower surface adapted to be affixed to the roadway surface and an upper surface, said lower surface extending longitudinally between a forward portion of the base member adapted to face the oncoming traffic and an opposite rearward portion, and laterally between longitudinally extending opposite side portions, said lower surface having an area sufficient to enable the base member to withstand contact with oncoming vehicles without failure or detachment from the roadway, and

a signal device having an upper surface, a lower surface and an obverse surface between the upper and 'lower surfaces, said signal device extending longitudinally between opposite forward and rearward portions and laterally between opposite sideportrons,

means for affixing said signal device relative to said base member and the roadway surface for selective removal of at least a portion thereof without destruction of the base member, said affixing means comprising:

a pair of retainer elements, each retainer element having first and second arms extending generally longitudinally between opposite ends and spaced apart laterally, said arms being interconnected adjacent one of said ends of each arm such that said arms are resiliently deflectable relative to one another in an altitudinal direction;

first means for engaging. the first arm of each retainer element with the signal device adjacent each side portion thereof; and

second means for engaging the second arm of each retainer element with the base member adjacent each side portion thereof;

said first and second means being located relative to one another in an altitudinal direction such that the first and second arms of each retainer element will be resiliently deflected relative to one another in an altitudinal direction to establish a resilient retaining force urging the signal device downwardly toward the roadway surface.

2. The invention of claim 1 wherein the affixing means include forward and rearward abutments on the base member extending laterally along the upper surface of the base member for engaging the corresponding forward and rearward portions of the signal device.

4. The invention of claim 1 wherein said first means include a bar joining said retainer elements together, said bar having opposite ends integral with the first arms of the retainer elements and extending laterally along the upper surface of the signal device between the opposite side portions of the signal device, said bar being resiliently urged downwardly by the relative altitudinal direction of said arms to urge the signal device downwardly against the base member.

5. The invention of claim 4 wherein the retainer elements are generally U-shaped and the bar interconnects the adjacent arms .of the pair of retainer elements adjacent the other of said ends of the adjacent arms.

6. The invention of claim 5 wherein the bar is normally bowed such that the portion of the bar between the opposite ends thereof is normally below said opposite ends when the first and second arms of the retainer elements are not resiliently deflected relative to one another.

7. The invention of claim 4 wherein said first means include a recess in the upper surface of the signal device extending laterally across the signal device for receiving said bar.

8. The invention of claim 1 wherein the retainer elements have a generally U-shaped configuration.

9. The invention of claim 1 wherein:

the base member includes sidewalls extending upwardly adjacent each side portion of the signal device such that the signal device is located between the sidewalls; and

said second means include a shoulder on each side wall facing downwardly for holding the second arm of each retainer element resiliently deflected relative to each first arm.

10. The invention of claim 9 wherein:

the shoulders project laterally outwardly away from one another; and

the retainer elements have a generally U-shaped configuration and extend in a longitudinal direction, the first and second arms being spaced apart laterally such that each retainer element will straddle a 1 1 l sidewall to locate the respective first arms thereof adjacent the signal device and the respective second arms thereof at said shoulders.

11. The invention of claim 1 wherein:

said first means is located above said second means such that the second arm of each retainer element is deflected downwardly relative to the first arm thereof.

, 12. The invention of claim ,1 wherein:

the base member includes sidewalls having inner and outer surfaces and extending upwardly adjacent each side portion of the signal device such that the signal device is located between the inner surfaces of the sidewalls;

the retainer elements have a generally U-shaped configuration and extend in a longitudinal direction, the first and second arms being spaced apart laterally such that each retainer element will straddle a sidewall to locate each first arm between an inner surface of a sidewall and a side portion of the signal device and each second arm along an outer surface of a sidewall;

said first means include a bar interconnecting the first arms of the retainer elements at the other of said ends thereof and extending later-ally across the upper surface of the signal device between the opposite side portions thereof; and

' said second meansinclude a shoulder on each side wall at the outer surface thereof, each said shoulder facing downwardly for holding the second arm of each retainer element resiliently deflected relative to each first arm such that the bar is resiliently urged downwardly by the relative altitudinal deflection of said arms tourge the signal device downwardly against the basemember.

13. The invention of claim 12 wherein said shoulders are located below the upper surface of the signal device.

14. The invention of claim 13 wherein said first means include a recess in the upper surface of the signal device extending laterally across the signal device for receiving said bar. 1

15. The invention of claim 12 wherein the base member includes forward and rearward abutmen'ts extending longitudinally along the upper surface of the base member for engaging the corresponding forward and rearward portions of the signal device.

16. The invention of claim 12 wherein the signal device is a reflector member including a shell-like body of synthetic resin material and a filler material for reinforcing said shell-like body against forces applied externally by said contact with the oncoming vehicle.

17. The invention of claim 16 including a cap plate interposed between the bar and the reflector member, said cap plate being coextensive with essentially said entire upper surface of the reflector member.

18. The invention of claim 17 wherein said upper surface of the base member includes a platform and said affixing means are for affixing the reflector member to the base member with the lower surface of the reflector member upon the platform.

19. The invention of claim 1 wherein the signal device is a reflector member including a shell-like body of synthetic resin material and a filler material for reinforcing said shell-like body against forces applied externallyby said contact with the oncoming vehicle.

against damage from an oncoming snowplow blade during snow plowing operations:

said sidewalls each including an inclined upper surface formingan inclined ramp extending from said forward portion located at an elevation corresponding approximately to that of the lower surface of the base member to an uppermost portion located at an elevation corresponding at least to the elevation of the upper surface of the signal device, the inclined ramp being located longitudinally forward of the signal device and making an acute angle with said direction of extent such that the oncoming snowplow blade, when angled laterally with respect to the direction of travel thereof so as to have a leading portion and a trailing portion, will ride up the ramp and be deflected from contact with the signal device as the snowplow blade passes over the pavement marker; and

the uppermost portion of each sidewall extending generally parallel to said direction of extent rearward of said signal device a distance great enough to assure that as the leading portion of the snow plow blade leaves the uppermost portion of one of the sidewalls, the trailing portion of the snowplow blade will be engaged with the uppermost portion of the other of the sidewalls.

22. The invention of claim 1 wherein the base member is capable of service in snow areas, said base mem ber being constructed for protecting the signal device against damage from an oncoming snowplow blade during snow plowing operations;

said base member including a sidewall integral with the base member adjacent each of the side portions of the signal device, said sidewalls extending longitudinally and upwardly;

said sidewalls each including an inclined upper surface forming an inclined ramp extending from said forward portion located at an elevation corresponding approximately to that of the lower surface of the base member to an uppermost portion located at an elevation corresponding at least to the elevation of the upper surface of the signal device, the inclined ramp being located longitudinally forward of the signal device and making an acute angle with said direction of extent such that the oncoming snowplow blade, when angled laterally with respect to the direction of travel thereof so as to have a leading portion and a trailing portion, will ride up the ramp and be deflected from contact -with the signal device as the snowplow blade passes over the pavement marker; and

the uppermost portion of each sidewall extending generally parallel to said direction of extent rearward of said signal device a distance great enough to assure that as the leading portion of the snowplow blade leaves the uppermost portion of one of the sidewalls, the trailing portion of the snowplow blade will be engaged with the uppermost portion of the other of the sidewalls.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4195945 *Nov 24, 1978Apr 1, 1980Amerace CorporationSnowplowable pavement marker and base member therefor
US4402627 *Apr 2, 1982Sep 6, 1983D. Swarovski & Co.Runner to keep off snowplows
US4659248 *Feb 18, 1986Apr 21, 1987Amerace CorporationSelf cleaning pavement marker
US4955982 *Mar 26, 1987Sep 11, 1990Olympic Machines, Inc.Raised depressible pavement marker
US5078538 *Mar 8, 1990Jan 7, 1992Stimsonite CorporationBase for roadway marker and method for making same
US5454664 *Apr 7, 1994Oct 3, 1995Hallen Products Ltd.Roadway marker
US6102612 *Jun 16, 1998Aug 15, 2000Stimsonite CorporationControlled tire impact pavement marker
US6461077Feb 17, 2000Oct 8, 2002Hallen Products, Ltd.Reflector base
DE2719878A1 *Apr 29, 1977Nov 10, 1977Amerace CorpGegen beschaedigung durch schneepfluege geschuetzte pflastermarkierung
DE2719879A1 *Apr 29, 1977Nov 10, 1977Amerace CorpSchneepflugfeste fahrbahnmarkierung und verfahren und vorrichtung zum setzen derselben
Classifications
U.S. Classification404/15
International ClassificationE01F9/04, E01F9/06
Cooperative ClassificationE01F9/06
European ClassificationE01F9/06
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Sep 12, 1990ASAssignment
Owner name: STIMSONITE CORPORATION, C/O QUAD-C, INC., A CORP.
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:AMERACE CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:005437/0178
Effective date: 19900823
Aug 13, 1990ASAssignment
Owner name: AMERACE CORPORATION, A CORP. OF DE.
Free format text: CHANGE OF NAME;ASSIGNOR:AMERACE ESNA CORPORATION, (CHANGED TO), A CORP. OF DE.;REEL/FRAME:005439/0834
Effective date: 19730424
Aug 13, 1990AS01Change of name
Owner name: AMERACE CORPORATION, A CORP. OF DE.
Owner name: AMERACE ESNA CORPORATION, (CHANGED TO), A CORP. OF
Effective date: 19730424
Aug 6, 1990ASAssignment
Owner name: MANUFACTURERS HANOVER TRUST COMPANY, NEW YORK
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:AMERACE CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:005465/0013
Effective date: 19900731