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Publication numberUS3840095 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 8, 1974
Filing dateFeb 11, 1974
Priority dateFeb 11, 1974
Also published asDE2438666A1
Publication numberUS 3840095 A, US 3840095A, US-A-3840095, US3840095 A, US3840095A
InventorsMatson C
Original AssigneeMatson C G
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Fluid-pressurizible clamp for mounting vibrators and the like
US 3840095 A
A selectively releasable clamp and carrier structure is provided for mounting vibrators, for example, on a support or track associated with a form, container, etc. for material to be vibrated, settled etc. The purpose of the clamp is to enable quick release and relocking of the device in various positions relative to the support and, in this case, the clamp is selectively pressurized to clamp and depressurized to release and features novel cylinder and piston elements.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [191 [1 11 3,840,095 Matson 1 Oct. 8, 1974 1 FLUID-PRESSURIZIBLE CLAMP FOR 2,775,869 1/1957 Pointer 188/67 MOUNTING VIBRATORS AND THE LIKE Inventor: Carl G. Matson, 401 E. Central B1vd., Kewanee, 111. 61345 Filed: Feb. 11, 1974 Appl. No.: 441,465

US. Cl 188/67, 92/249, 188/42, 188/151, 248/16, 248/23, 269/22 Int. Cl B65h 59/10 Field of Search 188/67, 42, 151; 248/16, 248/23; 269/22; 92/249; 425/456 Primary Examiner-George E. A. Halvosa Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Harold M. Knoth 7 1 ABSTRACT A selectively releasable clamp and carrier structure is provided for mounting vibrators, for example, on a support or track associated with a form, container, etc. for material to be vibrated, settled etc. The purpose of the clamp is to enable quick release and relocking of the device in various positions relative to the support and, in this case, the clamp is selectively pressurized to clamp and depressurized to release and features novel cylinder and piston elements.

10 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION In applicants co-pending application, Ser. No. 276,765, filed July 26, 1972, now US. Pat. No. 3,804,375, there is disclosed and claimed clamp means operative in the above area and utilizing an elastomer envelope capable of being inflated to clamp and deflated to release the vibrator or its carrier relative to a support that is rigid with the object to be vibrated. In that case, it is a feature of the construction that the vibrator is fluid-pressure operated and the envelope is connected into the pressure supply so that inflation and deflation thereof are automatic with operation and non-operation of the vibrator, so that when the vibrator is shut down, the clamp releases and the vibrator may be moved to another position and, upon restarting the vibrator, the clamp automatically locks. Of course, the system and construction just referred to, by way of example, are not limited to pneumatic operation and reference thereto in terms of inflation etc. is intended merely as a brief familiarization of the reader with what appears to be the basic prior art over which the present invention constitutes improvements.

One further example of the art, in addition to that discussed in the above application, is in other copending applications Ser. No. 353,995, filed April 24, 1973 and Ser. No. 429,362, filed Dec. 28, 1973, which features the utilization of an automatic clamp means in connection with an elongated track rigidly affixed to, for example, a form used in the casting of concrete slabs and the like, wherein the ability of the clamp to be quickly and easily released lends itself to the rapid changeability of the vibrator from position to position along the track without the need for dismounting the vibrator between position changes.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Although the structures, systems and methods referred to above are highly advantageous, economical and have found commercial acceptance, they naturally lend themselves to research and development with a view toward finding improvements and variations, and the present invention lies in that area, providing a new means for mounting the vibrator and employing another form of pressurizible and depressurizible device. In this connection it should be borne in mind that most vibrator applications and uses lie in fields where fluent, granular and abrasive materials are not uncommon and these, together with the tremendous forces and pressures involved, are responsible for or contribute materially to early and excessive wear and the need for easy and inexpensive replacement of parts, particularly parts of elastomcr material employed in the clamping means, such as the elastomer envelopes, which must be totally replaced when worn or damaged.

According to the present invention, the envelopes are replaced with novel cylinder and piston assemblies in which the cylinder is a simple ring-like member welded, for example, to a carrier, and equipped with a simple piston of elastomer material. Thus, when the piston wears or is damaged, only it and not the entire assembly need be replaced. A further feature of the piston is that its face thatengages the support or object to be vibrated is convex toward the support so that, upon pressurization of the cylinder, the center part of the pis- 2. ton engages the support first, followed by engagement of the support by the remainder of the piston face. This characteristic of the piston affords the piston adequate flexibility for recovery of its starting position when the cylinder is depressurized.

Additionally, the center of the support-proximate face of the piston carries material of greater hardness than the main body of the piston, which increases the life of the piston. Preferably this harder material is a steel ball or the like embedded in the center of the piston and exposed to the support or track, and this decreases friction between the piston and track and enables easier movement of the vibrator and its carrier along the track when changing positions. The convex nature of the piston face, in conjunction with the formation of the interior of the piston as a cup having an annular lip or rim, increases the sealing pressure betweenthe lip and interior of the cylinder. The piston is not axially outwardly confined by the cylinder, so that, when the structure is dismounted from the support or track, accidental pressurization of the cylinder will simply blowthe piston out of the cylinder and would not, therefore, over-inflate the piston.

Other improvements reside in the construction of the carrier as an element to which the vibrator or equivalent force-exerting device may be rigidly but removably affixed, which has the advantage that, if the carrier and clamp means are damaged, it is not necessary to replace the vibrator as well; and in the design of the carrier in such a way that it may have a multiplicity of cylinder and piston assemblies pressure-manifolded for simultaneous operation, the manifolding being accomplished by constructing the'vibrator-mounting element as a fluid-pressure chamber connected to all the cylinders and having means for admitting and discharging fluid pressure. In this area, the construction employs simple steel plates welded together in fluid-tight relation, providing a strong and economical structure.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is an elevation of a preferred embodiment of the invention, showing the improved carrier mounting a vibrator and associated with a support or track as the object to be vibrated.

FIG. 2 is a view, partly in section, as seen generally along the line 2-2 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged section as seen along the line 3-3 of FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a view similar to FIG. 3 but showing the unit under pressure.

FIG. 5 is a view as seen along the section line 5-5 in FIG. 4.

FIG. 6 schematically illustrates one form of pressure circuit.

FIG. 7 schematically illustrates another form of pressure circuit.

DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The numeral 10 designates a support or track representative of the background utility of the invention, for example as along the lines referred to previously herein. In this particular instance, by way of disclosure, the track is a channel having a web 12 and opposite flanges which are turned in at 14. As adverted to above, the track may be quite long and this is one reason why simple clamping means are desirable, because the position of the vibrator must be changed often and quickly.

The basic carrier is designated at 16 and cooperates with the track flanges 14 in a male-female manner, to be described in more detail below, besides which the carrier rigidly but removably mounts a vibrator 18. The vibrator may be of any type, one form of which is described in detail in the above-noted applications and, for purposes of the present disclosure and by way of example only, will be referred to as powered by compressed air, as from a source 20 (FIGS. 6 and 7).

The carrier 16 is here shown as being made up of a steel plate 22 having a selected length and width to accommodate the chosen number of cylinder and piston assemblies (to be covered in detail later) and to provide side portions 24 mating with the track flanges 14 (FIGS. 1, 3, 4 and The plate has a pair of rollers 26 to facilitate movement of the unit along the track from position to position. Handles 27 are provided at opposite ends of the plate, also to facilitate movement of the carrier and to enable the carrier to be lifted, carried etc. At this point it should be observed that although the channel or track is shown in an upright position here, it could be otherwise disposed, the position here being based on the use of the system in the background area of the second-named application above; i.e., in conjunction with elongated track means fixed to a pre-cast concrete form. Likewise, the flanges 14 and plate side portions 24 could undergo a reversal of parts and the track could be a member of l-section and the portions 24 could be inturned flanges, which is largely a matter of choice of design and not affecting the scope and applicability of the invention.

In the present case, a plurality of indentical cylinder and piston assemblies 28 is employed, all affixed to the under or inner side of the plate; i.e., that face of the plate that is disposed toward the web 12 of the track 10. Since the assemblies are the same, a description of one will suffice for all. Brackets 26a that carry the wheels 26 are welded between the end pairs of cylinders at 26b (FIG, 5).

Each assembly includes a cylinder 30, preferably a steel circular ring welded in fluid-tight relation to the inner or under face of the plate 22. There are four such assemblies, and each includes additionally a piston 32 formed essentially of elastomer material, such as rubber for example, with an exception to be noted presently. The piston, in its normal, relaxed or unpressurized state presents a web-proximate end exposed through the open end of its cylinder to the track web 12 and ofa convex construction; i.e., its center portion is higher" than the portions surrounding the central portion.

The central interior portion of the piston is enlarged or thickened at 34 to accommodate a hardened insert or element, preferably in the form ofa steel ball 36, or any comparable element of material harder, more wear-resistant, etc. and having less friction than rubber relative to the track web 12. The piston is essentially in form of a cup having an interior rim or lip 38, here tapering toward the closed (plate) end of the cylinder and the radial wall (facing the track web 12) may likewise taper radially from the central portion 34 to the lip 38, all of which contributes to the ability of the end or radial wall of the piston to flex between the two extremes shown in FIGS. 3 and 4.

One characteristic of the convex radial wall is that the center, including the insert or ball 36, contacts the track web or surface 12 first, followed by the end wall portion surrounding the ball, so that ultimately the entire end wall of the pressurized piston will engage the track web (FIG. 4), besides which this action results in increasing the pressure seal between the exterior of the lip 38 and the interior of the cylinder 30. Increased sealing means, of course, the prevention of loss of pressure and the exclusion of foreign materials into the interior of the assembly 28.

Because of the use of the plurality of piston and cylinder assemblies 28, the structure 16 includes at its side or face away from the face or side carrying the assem blies 28, a spine 40, which is preferably in the form of an inverted steel channel welded to the plate in fluidtight relation and closed at its opposite ends 42 to provide an auxiliary fluid chamber 44. This functions as a fluid-pressure manifold for interconnecting the cylinder and piston assemblies 28 via a plurality of openings of passages 46. The means providing for the admission of and discharge of fluid to and from the chamber 44 here comprises a drilled and tapped bore 48 to which a fluid pressure line may be connected, as will appear below.

The spine or box 40 serves not only as a fluid chamber but also as means for removably mounting the vibrator 18, as by a pivot pin 50 and a suitable screw device 52. These are merely representative of many means that could be exploited. In operation, the vibrator becomes a rigid part of the unit or structure 16.

Considering that the fluid pressure means here is compressed air, but observing the equivalency of hydraulic fluid for example, attention is directed to FIG. 6, wherein is shown a circuit including the fluid pressure source 20, the chamber means 40, the vibrator 18 and a cylinder and piston assembly 28, as well as two fluid lines 54 and 56 in which valves 58 and 60, respectively, are interposed. This is a circuit in which the vibrator and cylinder and piston assembly may be independently operated, depending upon the control of the valves 58 and 60.

FIG. 7 shows an automatic" circuit; i.e., one in which the clamp means 28 etc. are pressurized substantially simultaneously with operation of the vibrator 18, this circuit including a line 62, having a valve 64, leading to the chamber means 40 and a line 66 leading from the chamber means 40 to the vibrator 18. Thus, when the valve 64 is opened, fluid under pressure enters the chamber 44 at the inlet 48, pressurizes the cylinder and piston assemblies 28 to effect clamping action and flows to the vibrator 18 to activate same. Reversely, when the valve 64 is closed, both the vibrator l8 and the clamp means (cylinder and piston assemblies 28) are depressurized or deactivated. In either case (FIGS. 6 or 7), pressurizing of the cylinder and piston assemblies effectuates clamping action and the vibrator is operated in its selected position for the desired time cycle, and when the clamp means is deactivated the carrier unit or structure, including of course the vibrator, may be moved to a new position, all without removing the unit from the track 10.

As noted above, the relaxed or depressurized pistons ride on the center balls 36 and wheels 26 during position changes. When pressurized, each piston has adequate area of contact with the track 10. In the event of wear etc., any piston per se may be easily and economically replaced. Damage to the carrier unit 16 enables replacement of it without entailing the replacement of the vibrator 18. The cylinders 30 may be easily and cheaply made from sections of tubing. The welded construction involves considerable savings in fabrication costs. Other features and advantages will readily occur to those versed in the art.

I claim:

1. Carrier structure mountable on and dismountable from a support by means of cooperating male and female portions respectively on the structure and the support, comprising a rigid structural element having a first face disposable toward the support and a second face disposable away from the support; means on the second face for rigidly carrying a force-exerting device; means rigid with the element and including a cylinder having an essentially closed end at said first face and an open end facing the support; a piston in the cylinder and having one end exposed to the support at said open end of the cylinder and having its'opposite end cooperating with the closed end of the cylinder to afford a fluid-pressurizible and depressurizible chamber; said exposed end of the piston having a central portion and an integral peripheral portion and being composed essentially of resilient flexible material capable of flexing axially toward and away from the support when the chamber is pressurized and depressurized respectively, said exposed end of the piston having a central portion projecting axially outwardly toward the support farther than said peripheral portion so that, when the chamber is pressurized the central portion engages the support prior to engagement of the support by the peripheral portion; and means for admitting and discharging fluid under pressure to and from said chamber.

2. The invention defined in claim 1, in which the central portion includes a support-contacting member of material harder than that of the exposed end of the piston.

3. The invention defined in claim 2, in which the exposed end of the piston is of elastomer material and the member is a steel ball carried by said central portion.

4. The invention defined in claim 1, in which the exposed end of the piston is convex toward the support.

5. The invention defined in claim 4, in which the pis ton is in the form of a cup, the bottom of which is said convex closed end, said piston including integrally with said closed end a peripheral rim slidably internally fitting the cylinder within the chamber, and the piston is formed essentially of elastomer material.

6. The invention defined in claim 5, in which the convex end of the piston carries at its center a supportcontacting member. of material harder than said elastomer material.

7. The invention defined in claim 6, in which said piston end has an axially thickened radial wall portion at said center and the member is a steel ball embedded in said thickened portion.

8. The invention defined in claim 1, including a plurality of like cylinders and pistons and the fluid pressure admission and discharge means includes a manifold in communication with all cylinder chambers.

9. The invention defined in claim 1, in which the element includes a rigid box-like member of air-tight construction except for a first opening for admitting and exhausting fluid under pressure and a second opening communicating the box-like member with the cylinder chamber, said box-like member having wing portions for mating with the support portions;

10. The invention defined in claim 1, in which the element includes a steel plate-like base, the cylinder is a steel ring welded in air-tight relation to the first face of said element, the means for carrying the force-exerting element is a steel box-like structure of welded, air-tight construction Welded to the second face of said element and forming an auxiliary chamber connectible to a source of fluid under pressure and the aforesaid means for admitting and discharging fluid under pressure includes a passage communicating the auxiliary chamber with the cylinder chamber.

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US4046346 *Oct 10, 1975Sep 6, 1977Mitsubishi Jukogyo Kabushiki KaishaSlide mechanism having means for fixing movable frames
US4505362 *Jul 2, 1982Mar 19, 1985Institut Francais Du PetroleDevice for avoiding multiple bounces against a target of a mass _falling thereon along a rectilinear trajectory
US5316109 *Jan 29, 1990May 31, 1994Marquip Inc.Lockdown apparatus with intermediate membrane
US5678663 *Nov 16, 1995Oct 21, 1997Nippon Thompson Co., Ltd.Braking apparatus and rolling guide unit on which it is equipped
US5732799 *Oct 25, 1995Mar 31, 1998Nippon Thompson Co., Ltd.Braking apparatus and rolling guide unit on which it is equipped
US6062529 *May 21, 1998May 16, 2000General Motors CorporationHorizontal mount air gap presetting sensor bracket
US6796391 *Apr 2, 2003Sep 28, 2004Bauer Maschinen GmbhHydraulic clamping device for a variable gauge track vehicle
US20030205416 *Apr 2, 2003Nov 6, 2003Werner HarthauserCrawler running gear, particularly for a construction machine
US20070095341 *Oct 28, 2004May 3, 2007Stephen KaneffApparatus for rotation of a large body about an axis
US20090219218 *May 15, 2009Sep 3, 2009Stephen KaneffApparatus for rotation of a large body about an axis
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WO2005043671A1 *Oct 28, 2004May 12, 2005Stephen KaneffApparatus for rotation of a large body about an axis
WO2011060824A1 *Nov 19, 2009May 26, 2011Caterpillar Commercial S.A.R.L.Apparatus for a variable gauge undercarriage
U.S. Classification188/67, 188/42, 188/151.00A, 92/249, 188/151.00R, 269/22, 248/674
International ClassificationB28B1/08, B28B1/087, F16B2/02
Cooperative ClassificationF16B2/02
European ClassificationF16B2/02