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Publication numberUS3880456 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 29, 1975
Filing dateMar 19, 1973
Priority dateMar 19, 1973
Publication numberUS 3880456 A, US 3880456A, US-A-3880456, US3880456 A, US3880456A
InventorsDeroshia Garland D
Original AssigneeClark Equipment Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Fitting for lifting cargo containers
US 3880456 A
Abstract
A load handling apparatus adapted for lifting and moving cargo containers with fixtures in the upper side corners, in which a pair of horizontally positioned, laterally extensible and retractable members project outwardly above and on opposite sides of the containers, and have arms at the outer ends adapted for movement from a vertical position along the side of the container to a raised, generally horizontal position. A fitting is connected to the outer end of each member and has a structure extending laterally from the respective member and arm, and a pin extending inwardly in a generally horizontal position from said structure in spaced relation to the respective member and disposed laterally with the respective arm, for engaging the container fixture and lifting and transporting the container. An actuator is provided for retracting and extending said members and simultaneously engaging said pins with and disengaging them from the container fixtures.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1191-- DeRoshia Apr. 29, 1975 FITTING FOR LIFTING CARGO CONTAINERS [75] Inventor: Garland D. DeRnshia, Newman Lake, Wash.

[73] Assignee: ClarkEquipment Company,

Buchanan, Mich.

[22] Filed: Mar. 19, 1973 [2|] Appl. No.: 342,717

[52] US. Cl..... 294/81 SF; 294/67 DA; 294/67 DB;

294/67 BC. 67 D. 67 DA. 67 DB, 8l R, 81 SF, 8 ZR; 212/8 R, 8 A. 8 B, ll, [3. 14; 214/77 R. 78, 394, 396

Primary Examiner-Even C. Blunk Axsislant E \aminer.loh'nny D. Cherry Attorney. Agent, or Firm-Hobbs & Green [57] ABSTRACT A load handling apparatus adapted for lifting and moving cargo containers with fixtures in the upper side corners, in which a pair of horizontally positioned, laterally extensible and retractable members project outwardly above and on opposite sides of the containers, and have arms at the outer ends adapted for movement from a vertical position along the side of the container to a raised, generally horizontal position. A fitting is connected to the outer end of each member and has a structure extending laterally from the respective member and arm, and a pin extending inwardly in a generally horizontal position from said structure in spaced relation to the respective member {56] References Cited and disposed laterally with the respective arm. for en- UNITED STATES PATENTS gaging the container fixture and lifting and transport- 3243224 3H9) Gumdgc 294/81 SF X ing the container. An actuator is provided for retract- 3 443374 6/1969 Mumnson 214/77 R X ing and extending said members and simultaneously 3.458.229 7/1969 Nagy et .11. 294/31 SF ngaging said pins ith and disengaging them from the 3.5 I399? 5/1970 Hcycr et al. 2l4/77 R container fixtures. 3.5S8,l76 l/l97l Fathauer et al. 294/8! SF X D 3.606.053 9 1971 Whitcman 294/111 SF 9 Clams "wing 8" 179 ma 3 g9 W? i in as I 3a /22 PATENTEUAPRZQWS 3.880.456

sum 2 or 4 PATENn-inmesmzs SHEET t Of 4 FIG. 5

FIG. 6A

1 FITTING FOR LIFTING CARGO CONTAINERS In equipment for transferring loads such as cargo containers onto and from railroad cars, the load is normally lifted and moved by a beam or boom having a grappling means which engages fixtures in the upper four corners of the container, or which slips beneath the lower edges of the container and supports the container while it is being lifted and transferred either to or from the railroad car, These prior grappling means have usually consisted of a unitary frame structure often supported on the beam or boom by cables and having arms extending downwardly along the sides of the container with lift shoes at the bottom for engaging the under side of the load. These frame structures have generally been bulky and cumbersome to operate and have often required the load transfer equipment to be substantially larger than the container in order to accommodate the frame structure and to provide space for manipulating it into its load lifting and transfer posi tions. Further, the devices for engaging the fixtures on the containers have frequently been difficult to adjust to different size containers and to position at the proper location for engaging the fixtures, and have been either difficult to latch and/or unreliable while supporting the container. It is therefore one of the principal objects of the present invention to provide a beam mounted load engaging and supporting mechanism which can readily and effectively be adjusted both lengthwise and crosswise to the dimensions of a semitrailer or container, and which requires little additional operating space beyond that required for the operation of the beam.

Another object of the invention is to provide a load engaging mechanism which can be used in conjunction with and as an alternative for the type having the vertical arms with shoes at the bottom for supporting the container, without removing or encountering interference from operational parts of the other, and which can be easily and quickly attached to the container without the use of tools or other equipment apart from the mechanism itself.

Still another object of the invention is to provide a rather simple and compact load lifting fitting which can be coupled to the container and controlled by an operator at a location remote from the container without any manual manipulation of the load lifting fittings. to either attach them to or detach them from the container, and which operates as a part of a load supporting beam normally positioned longitudinally with respect to the load such as a semitrailer or cargo container.

Further objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following description and accompanying drawings, wherein:

FIG. I is a side elevation of the load transfer mechanism with the load handling apparatus, showing a cargo container in broken lines supported thereby:

FIG. 2 is an end elevational view of the apparatus shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a top plan view showing a portion of the load handling apparatus;

FIG. 4 is a side elevational view showing the same portion as FIG. 3 of the load handling apparatus;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view taken on line 5-5 of FIG. 3;

FIG. 6 is a sectional view along line 6-6 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 6A is a fragmentary view of a portion of the mechanism shown in FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a side elevational view similar to FIG. 4

showing a lift arm in raised position for operation of a 5 container lift fitting involving the present invention;

FIG. 8 is a side elevational view of a fitting used in conjunction with the four arms of the apparatus; and

FIG. 9 is an elevational view of the mechanism which supports the arms in their elevated position while my fitting is being used to lift a load.

Referring more specifically to the drawings, numeral 10 indicates a semitrailer adapted to be connected to a tractor at the forward end 12 by a kingpin, 14 the bed of the trailer, and 16 the undercarriage supporting the rear end of the bed. The load transfer mechanism is indicated generally by numeral 20, and is mounted on and secured to the bed, and is transported along with the semitrailer from one operational location to another without any substantial changes in the structure between operating position and transporting position. The semitrailer may be of conventional construction, or it may be specifically designed for use in conjunction with the present load tranfer mechanism, the one shown having a goose-neck portion 24 and a landing gear 26 disposed on each side of bed 14. While the structure interconnecting the forward end and the undercarriage is herein referred to as a bed or base, it may be a beam or frame-type structure other than that normally considered as a bed. Further, while the load transfer mechanism is shown mounted on a semitrailer, it can be mounted on a stationary base if desired, and the cargo containers or trailers to be loaded and unloaded may be brought to that position instead of the load transfer device being transported to the railroad car or other location where the container is to be moved by the mechanism. A load transfer mechanism of the type involved in the present application is shown and claimed in copending application Ser. No. 187,362 filed Oct. 7, l97l, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,718,221, common assignee, and description of the details is incorporated herein as necessary to fully understand the construction and operation of the transfer mechanism.

Referring further to FIG. 1, the numerals 34 and 36 designate, respectively, a pair of extensible and retractable main actuators or cylinders pivoted on the frame of bed 14 at their lower end about axes 35 and 37. Actually, both actuators 34 and 36 include two additional actuators 34' and 36' in the embodiment described and illustrated herein, and the arrangement just described is duplicated at the opposite end of the base 14. In order to simplify the description of the invention, the main actuators 34 and 36 will be referred to as if they were each single actuators instead of double. There is also a pair of boom or auxiliary actuators indicated, respectively, by the numerals 38 and 40, the lower end of actuator 38 being pivoted about the same axis as main actuator 34 in the embodiment illustrated, and the lower end of actuator 40 being pivoted about the same axis as main actuator 36. The auxiliary actuators are duplicated at the opposite end of the bed in the form of the load transfer mechanism illustrated, as may be seen in FIG. 2. The main and auxiliary actuators are illustrated herein as hydraulic cylinder and piston type expansible chamber devices, preferably of the type disclosed and claimed in copending application Ser. No. 211,523 filed Dec. 23, 1971, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,824,904, common assignee.

The upper ends of the main actuators 34 and 36 at both ends of the load transfer mechanism are pivotally connected at an intermediate location 39 to transverse boom arm 42, and the upper ends ofthe auxiliary actuators 38 and 40 are pivotally connected about a com mon shaft 44 located near one end of the boom arm, this arrangement likewise applying to the other end of the mechanism. The other end of each boom arm, ie the free end thereof, in the embodiment shown, supports between the arms a spreader beam and lifting device. pivotable about a pivot axis 45. The lifting device includes a beam 46, which supports depending container engaging means indicated generally by numeral 48, having arms 50 and including the present load engaging and supporting means, to be more fully described hereinafter.

The two container engaging means 48 are adjusted to the width of the container. and also are moved longitudinally on the main longitudinal member 46 in order to adjust to the length of the container. FIG. 1 shows the load transfer mechanism as it is transferring cargo container 54 between a railroad car on one side of the load transfer mechanism and the ground on the other. The auxiliary actuators 40 and 38 are contracted. thereby lowering the right end of boom arms 42, one at each end of the mechanism, and raising the left end of such boom arms and lifting along therewith container 54 off the railroad car. Outriggers 58 and 59 are provided on the sides of the portable load transfer mechanism in order to stabilize it during the handling of a heavy load from one side to the other, one suitable type of outriggers being disclosed and claimed in copending application Ser. 190,221,967 filed Jan. 31, 1972, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,743,l08, common assignee.

As shown in FIG. I, the load handling device includes carriages 48 which are adjustable longitudinally along the main beam 46, it being understood that the carriage 48 at the opposite end of the machine is an allochiral image of the structure to be described. Main beam structure 46 consists of two I-beams, and each carriage 48 is supported on rollers which operate on tracks on the upper surfaces of the l-beams. The carriages are moved back and forth longitudinally along the beam 46 by means ofa known mechanism. preferably including a hydraulic motor which operates suitable cables to provide forward and reverse movement ofthe carriages 48.

FIGS. 1-6 show the details of one embodiment of the load handling apparatus and illustrate the manner of operation ofthe apparatus to pick up a container. Each device includes a pair of lift arms 50 which are secured. respectively, at the ends of tubular members 96 and which have shoes 52 at their lower ends. Each of the lift arms 50 is pivotable by remote control from the solid line position shown in FIG. 4, which represents the operating position, to the collapsed or transport position, by rotating them upwardly to the horizontal position. In lifting a container using the shoes, after the carriages 48 have been adjusted to the desired longitudinal positions to fit container 54, the arms 50 are then pivoted downwardly to vertical position, and moved inwardly to insert lift shoes 52 beneath the container. FIG. is a fragmentary view, partially in section, taken at the lo cation indicated in FIG. 3, showing a portion of the carriage 48 and arms 50 in the depending position. One of the rollers 92 which operates along the top l-beam 46b is shown in FIG. 5, along with brace portion 90.

The structural portion of the carriage 48 includes a fixed transverse tube 94. Within tube 94, which extends across the load lifting device, there is located at each end a telescopic tubular member 96 which is arranged to be moved inwardly and outwardly within tube 94 by means of a remotely controlled linear actuator 98. At the outer end of each tube 96 one of the lift arms 50 is securely affixed to the tube, and in FIG. 2 a single arm 50 is shown in the depending position for lifting container 54. To provide for the specified pivotal movement of arm 50, the tube 96 on which it is mounted is pivoted by means ofa linear hydraulic actu ator 100 which may be seen in FIG. 6. It is pivotally connected at the top to brace to pivot about an axis 101, while at the bottom it is connected at 102 to a rotation muff 104, which in turn is operatively engaged with inner tube 96 by means of a key 105 which is secured to the muff 104. As shown in FIG. 6, the outer tube 94 has a cutout portion indicated at 106 which ex tends through an arc of more than 90, and through which the key 105 projects into a longitudinal slot 107 (see FIG. 6A) in the inner tube 96. With this arrangement. circumferential movement of the muff 104 by means of the actuator causes the key 105 to pivot the tube 96 about its axis. the key 105 moving through the slot or cutout portion 106 in the outer tube 94. Pivotal movement of more than 90 as provided is adequate to enable the necessary pivotal movement of the arm between the maximum up and the maximum down position by arcuate movement of the pivot point 102 which, in turn, is produced by the extension and retraction of actuator 100.

Referring to FIG. 6A, the slot 107 extends longitudinally of the tube 96 to provide for out and in movement of the tube 96 by means of actuator 98 previously described, independently of and without interference with the pivoting mechanism described in the preceding paragraph. During such out and in movement of the tube 96, the slot 107 moves out and in relative to the key 105.

The load handling apparatus disclosed herein is adapted for moving cargo containers which have fixtures in the upper corners of the sides, including open ings extending inwardly for receiving a load engaging member of the lift mechanism. The corner fixtures on the cargo container with the openings therein utilize fittings constituting the primary novel concept of the present disclosure and shown best in FIGS. 2, S, 7 and 8. A fitting 130 is mounted on each end of rotatable tube 96 for rotation therewith, and is connected to the respective arm 50. The fitting consists essentially of a load pickup pin 132 for seating in the respective fixture in the upper side corner of the container or trailer, and supporting the load while it is moved between the railroad flatcar and the ground, or to a truck or tractor. The pin 132 is supported by brackets I34 and 136 which are rigidly secured to tube 96 and to the respective arm 50, so that the two brackets move with the arm and tube, and they are so constructed that they project downwardly from the arm when the arm is in its folded position as shown in FIG. 7, or laterally when the arm is in its vertical position shown in FIG. 2. The pin is welded, or otherwise rigidly secured to the two brack ets, and is adapted to move outwardly and inwardly as tube 96 is extended and retracted.

Since the load lifting pin 132 is engaged with the container by the axial movement oftube 96 when the arms 50 are in their elevated position, an extensible and retractable device 138 for supporting the arms is mounted on the under side of the beam 46 and consists of a hydraulic cylinder 140, a piston rod 142 which opcrates a telescopic support rod 144 on which arm 50 rests when fitting 130 is being used. or when the apparatus is in its folded position for transporting it from one location to another. The rod 144 which is rectangular in cross sectional shape, is extensible to permit the arm, and consequently fitting 130, to move outwardly and inwardly when the pin 132 is being engaged with or disengaged from the fixture on container 54. A catch means 146 is provided at the end of rod 144 to assist in positioning the arm in its retracted position, and an upper U-shaped trap means 148, which is connected to brace portion 90, assists in holding the arm in a substantially fixed position when the fitting is being used, or when the apparatus is being transported. In order to disengage the arm from the trap means, rod 144 is extended to the position illustrated in FIG. 9 and the tubular member and arm are then extened laterally until the arm is beyond the end of the trap means, thereby permitting the arm to be lifted over catch 146 and extended downwardly into the operating position for the alternative load lifting position.

In the embodiment of the lift mechanism illustrated herein, the lift fittings may be used alternatively with respect to the lift shoes at the bottom of arm 50. Since the arms can be rotated to the vertical position. the arms with the shoes are used for lifting containers or trailers when they are in the position illustrated in FIG. 2. With the arms in that position, the pin [32 of fitting 130 extends laterally with respect to the arms, so that it does not interfere with the operation of the apparatus when the arms are used in the manner shown. The arms are extended downwardly along the side of the container, and as the tubes and arms are retracted iiiwardly, the shoes slip under the container, which can then be lifted and transported. In the use of the present fitting, the arms are rotated upwardly and are positioned on support rod 144 where neither the arms nor the shoes interfere with the operation of fitting 130.

In the operation and use of the fitting 130, all four arms 50 are placed in their horizontal position and are supported by the respective rods 144 which have been extended to the position illustrated in FIG. 9. With the tubes 96 extended and fittings 130 and arms 50 moved outwardly to the position illustrated in full lines in FIG. 9, the pins 132 of the opposed fittings are spaced outwardly from the fixtures in the upper side corners of the container. Tubes 96 are then retracted inwardly, causing pins 132 to extend inwardly into the holes of the openings in the fixtures of the container. As the tubes contract inwardly, the arms supported on rods I44 slide inwardly from the position shown in full lines to the position shown in dotted lines in FIG. 9. When the pins are firmly seated in the fixtures of the container, the boom arms are operated to lift and swing the container from one position to another, for example, from one side on the ground to the other.

One of the advantages of the present fitting is that it can be used in conjunction with the alternative lifting apparatus involving the arms and shoes, in the manner illustrated in FIG. 2, without any changes in fitting 130 being required. It is thus possible to alternately use one or the other with a minimum amount of changeover time.

While only one embodiment of the present fitting for lifting cargo containers has been described in detail herein, various modifications and changes may be made without departing from the scope of the inven tion.

I claim:

1. In a load handling apparatus adapted for lifting and moving cargo containers with fixtures in the upper side corners, and including a pair of horizontally positioned, laterally extensible and retractable members for projeeting outwardly above and on opposite sides of the containers, and an arm at the outer end of each of said members adapted for movement from a vertical posi tion along the side of the container to a raised, generally horizontal position: a fitting connected to the outer end of each member and having a structure extending laterally from the respective member and arm, a pin fixed with respect to the respective member and arm and extending inwardly in a generally horizontal position from said structure in spaced relation to the respective member and disposed laterally in relation to the respective arm, a motor means for retracting and extending said members and simultaneously engaging said pins with and disengaging them from the container fixtures when said arms are in their horizontal position, and means spaced horizontally from said members supporting said arms for inward and outward lateral movement when said arms are in their horizontal position and are moved between said container engaging and disengaging positions.

2. A load handling apparatus as defined in claim 1, in which said extensible and retractable members are rotatable and said arms and struc ures are rigidly attached to the ends of said members and moveable angularly as said members are rotated.

3. A load handling apparatus as defined in claim 2, in which arm support means is disposed generally horizontally and spaced from said parallel with said member, and means is provided for extending and retracting said arm support means.

4. A load handling apparatus as defined in claim 1, in which arm support means is disposed generally horizontally and spaced from and parallel with said members, and means is provided for extending and retracting said arm support means.

5. A load handling apparatus as defined in claim 4, in which a means is provided above and in spaced relation to said arm support means for retaining the respective arm in close proximity to said support means when said fitting is in operation.

6. The fitting as defined in claim 5, in which said structure is disposed at a position substantially laterally from said arm so that said pin is directly beneath said member when said arm is in its raised horizontal position.

7. A load handling apparatus as defined in claim 5, in which a hydraulic cylinder is provided for extending and retracting the arm support means.

8. A leading handling apparatus, as defined in claim 4. in which a hydraulic cylinder is provided for extending and retracting the arm support means.

9. The fitting as defined in claim 1, in which said structure is disposed at a position substantially 90 laterally from said arm so that said pin is directly beneath said member when said arm is in its raised horizontal position.

i I I k

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3243224 *May 28, 1964Mar 29, 1966Pullman IncLifting sling for semi-trailers and demountable containers
US3448874 *Jul 3, 1967Jun 10, 1969Koehring CoMobile crane with spaced pivotally mounted booms
US3458229 *Jun 26, 1967Jul 29, 1969Cooper George WUniversal lifting spreader
US3513997 *Jan 16, 1968May 26, 1970Coles Krane GmbhTransporter for crates
US3558176 *Oct 7, 1968Jan 26, 1971Midland Ross CorpExpandable spreader and grappling device for cargo containers and trailers
US3606053 *Dec 15, 1969Sep 20, 1971Midland Ross CorpGrappler-spreader for cantilever-boom trucks
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4149747 *Mar 31, 1975Apr 17, 1979Rpc CorporationGrappler spreader for closely stacking cargo containers
US4546891 *Dec 20, 1984Oct 15, 1985Mi-Jack Products, Inc.Grappler system for lifting apparatus
US5354112 *Dec 9, 1992Oct 11, 1994Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co., Ltd.Guide device for sifting and transporting containers
US5560663 *Jun 22, 1994Oct 1, 1996Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co., Ltd.Guide device for lifting and transporting a container
US5961170 *Oct 14, 1997Oct 5, 1999Krupp Fordertechnik GmbhMethod and apparatus for transporting loads
US7848485 *Nov 20, 2008Dec 7, 2010Nuctech Company LimitedTrailer security inspection system
Classifications
U.S. Classification294/81.2, 414/555, 294/81.54, 294/81.51
International ClassificationB66C1/66, B66C1/22, B66C1/62
Cooperative ClassificationB66C1/663, B66C1/22, B66C1/223
European ClassificationB66C1/22, B66C1/22B, B66C1/66B