US 3881407 A
A compactor for compacting and storing waste material comprises a storage box and a detachable, portable packing mechanism so that a single packing mechanism can be used with a number of storage boxes. The storage box has a top opening loading chute, and the packing mechanism is positioned over the opening. The packing mechanism includes a main frame assembly and a subframe assembly which is pivotally mounted within the main frame. The entire subframe assembly is raised to permit the material to be loaded in the chute and then latched in the closed position while a platen of the subframe assembly is driven through the chute by a hydraulic ram to eject and compact the material from the chute into the storage box.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [1 1 Goar [451 May 6,1975
[ WASTE REDUCTION EQUIPMENT 211 App]. No.: 379,656
OTHER PUBLICATIONS Solid Waste Mgt. April, 1972 Page 59.
Primary Examiner-Billy J. Wilhite Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Owen, Wickersham & Erickson  ABSTRACT A compactor for compacting and storing waste material comprises a storage box and a detachable, portable packing mechanism so that a single packing mechanism can be used with a number of storage boxes. The storage box has a top opening loading chute, and the packing mechanism is positioned over the opening. The packing mechanism includes a main frame assembly and a subframe assembly which is pivotally mounted within the main frame. The entire subframe assembly is raised to permit the material to be loaded in the chute and then latched in the closed position while a platen of the subframe assembly is driven through the chute by a hydraulic ram to eject and compact the material from the chute into the storage box.
17 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures PATENIEUMM BISYS 3,8 1,407
sum 20F s PATENTEDHAY ems 3.881.407
sum 3 or 3 FIG. 8. 40 94 M WASTE REDUCTION EQUIPMENT BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The waste reduction industry has gone through a substantial change over the last ten years. The industry began to develop when volumes of waste material became too cumbersome and expensive to process using traditional methods. Simple and obvious methods of mechanically reducing the waste material to manageable size characterized the initial development. Thus, a horizontal, hydraulically powered ram was used to compress refuse into a metal container. Later the industry began experimenting with different hydraulic cylinder configurations and compaction box designs.
Prior to the present invention there were four general types of designs (stationary compactors, vertical compactors, extruders or gooseneck compactors, and selfcontained compactors), each of which has some major and inherent disadvantages.
Stationary compactors have lengths and widths which vary, but an average one is feet long and 4 feet wide. A compactor box is attached to the front of the compactor. This compactor box will vary in length anywhere from 8 30 feet, depending on its cubic yardage size. The uncompacted material is thrown into the compactor and the compactor pushes it into the compactor box. The sweeping cycle continues until the compactor box has been filled with loose debris. The following loads compress the material in the compactor box, and this compaction continues until the force exerted against the refuse cannot force any more into the compaction box. This fully packed box of refuse normally holds three to four times as much material as the same box full of loose or uncompacted refuse. The compactor box is unhooked from the compactor and emptied. It is then attached again to the compactor and the cycle is repeated.
These stationary compactors have a number of disadvantages. The cost often runs $4,000 and up. The compactor requires a large space l0 feet by 6 feet and up). The stationary compactor also requires permanent implacement. in most cases the customer must provide a concrete pad and must bolt the compactor into place. Leakage of liquids and dry waste is a serious drawback. The mating of the compactor and a box is never totally watertight. As a result, with each compactor stroke, any wet material leaks onto the ground at the point of this mating. This can be a major problem, creating odor, attraction of flies, and an unsanitary condition. When the box is detached from the compactor (since the material is tightly compressed), some material always springs back and falls out of the hole onto the ground before the canvas flap or metal door can be put into place. The stationary compactor normally requires 220 or 440 volts. This often requires a special line to be strung. The hydraulics are often located on the same level as the material to be packed. The wet material sometimes leaks back onto the mechanism and causes rust and deterioration of expensive parts. The labor costs that are involved can often block a sale of such compactors, and the labor time involved in the detaching operation itself can also become excessive.
The vertical compactors are essentially balers. Many small units built for home use are on the market. The same principle is applied to a machine that has been increased in size and power. Material is placed in a chamber, and a ram vertically forces this material into a bag or box. When the box is full of compacted refuse, it is removed. A new bag or box is inserted, and the cycle repeats itself.
The disadvantages of these vertical compactors include cost, small capacity, and a small trash receptacle opening. Also, the bags tend to rip. Since the compactor is not watertight, the liquids may leak around the edges to the floor. The labor involved also becomes expensive in changing the bags and feeding the machine.
The extruders or gooseneck compactors are essentially the same in operation as a stationary compactor. in place of the compactor box, an elongated S-shaped chute is attached to the compactor. Material is forced into this chute and is compacted. The compacted material falls free from the other end of the chute into an open bin.
The disadvantages of these extruders are basically the same as for the stationary compactors. Furthermore, liquids wont flow up the chute. They tend to build up and run out the back of the machine. Trash often jams in the chute. And the labor costs are high. The trash must be manually rearranged in the box to eliminate voids caused by free falling material.
The self-contained compactors permanently mate the compactor with the compactor box. They are never separated and go through the packing cycle and emptying cycle together. While the self-contained compactors do eliminate leakage of liquids and dry waste, they have disadvantages. The disadvantages include the fact that the self-contained compactors are extremely heavy and unbalanced. They are inflexible. The unit can only be used with one compaction box, since it is not detachable. The hydraulic components are exposed to heavy jarring while the truck lifts and drops the unit during the emptying cycle. The hydraulic components are exposed to trash and liquid waste, and this can result in rust and general deterioration.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION it is a primary object of the present invention to construct a portable compactor which overcomes the disadvantages of the prior art.
The compactor of the present invention comprises a storage box and a separate, portable packing mechanism which is detachable from the storage box so that a single packing mechanism can be used with a number of storage boxes.
The storage box has an integral chute which serves as a charging chamber, and a platen in the packing mechanism is driven through the charging chamber to eject and compact the material from the chamber into the storage box.
All of the power equipment is located on the portable packing mechanism, rather than on the storage box.
The packing mechanism includes a main frame assembly and a subframe assembly which is pivotally connected to the main frame assembly. The subframe assembly includes a hydraulic ram for driving the platen. The hydraulic drive motor for the ram is located on the main frame assembly. The entire subframe assembly is swung upwardly about the pivot to an open position in which the material to be compacted can be loaded into the chute with the packing mechanism in place. The subframe assembly is then swung downward and latched onto the chute, and the ram is actuated to drive the platen downward through the charge chamber.
This loading and compacting operation is repeated until the storage box is completely filled. The packing mechanism is then disconnected from the storage box and rolled away. The top opening of the chute is closed by a hinged lid on the chute, and the storage box is ready to be dumped.
The present invention overcomes the disadvantages of the prior art by providing a complete system which accomplishes the following. It is totally leak-proof, compact in size and portable. It has large capacity, both in the refuse receptacle opening size and in the total volume held. It is flexible and can be used for any number of compactor boxes of the same or varied sizes. It operates on l 10 volts, so no special wiring is required. It can be used by front, rear loader or roll-off scavenger trucks. It requires no installation expense. Garbage or residue normally will never come in contact with the hydraulic and operating components. The ram mechanism is readily detachable and is easily removed during the dumping cycle. No labor invervention nor double handling is required. It is competitively priced and becomes economically justifiable for a large number of prospects who, up until now, needed but could not af ford a compactor.
Compactor apparatus and methods which incorporate the structure and techniques described above and which are effective to function as described above constitute specific objects of this invention.
Other objects, advantages and features of my invention will become apparent from the following detailed description of one preferred embodiment taken with the accompanying drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is an isometric view of a compactor constructed in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention and shows the packing mechanism connected to the storage box;
FIG. 2 is an isometric view of the storage box alone without the packing mechanism;
FIG. 3 is an isometric view of the packing mechanism alone without the storage box;
FIG. 4 is an isometric view showing details of a connection between the storage box and the packing mechanism;
FIG. 5 is an exploded isometric view showing details of the construction of the packing mechanism main frame and subframe assembly;
FIG. 6 is a side elevation view showing the platen and subframe assembly lifted up to permit loading of waste material in the chute of the storage box;
FIG. 7 is a side elevation view showing the subframe assembly latched to the front edge of the loading chute and also showing the platen being driven through the charge chamber provided by the loading chute in the course of ejecting and compacting the waste material from the charge chamber into the storage box;
FIG. 8 is a side elevation view like FIGS. 6 and 7 showing the platen at the end of its stroke;
FIG. 9 is a side elevation view showing how the storage box can be picked up and dumped by a truck; and
FIG. 10 is an enlarged side elevation view showing the operation of the latching mechanism for latching the packing mechanism subframe assembly in the closed position to the front edge of the loading chute.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS A compactor constructed in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention is indicated generally by the reference numeral 20 in FIG. 1. The compactor 20 comprises a storage box 22 and a portable packing mechanism 24.
As illustrated in FIG. 2 the storage box 22 is a generally rectangular shaped box having two sidewalls 26, two end walls 28 and a top 30 which is mounted on hinges 32 (and retained in a closed position by a latch which is not illustrated). The hinged top permits the contents of the storage box to be dumped by turning the box upside down. See the lift mechanism of the truck shown in FIG. 9. For this arrangement each end wall 28 has a channel member 34 which is constructed to receive one of the lift forks 36 of the dump truck shown in FIG. 9.
In accordance with the present invention the storage box 22 also includes a curved, top loading chute 38. The chute 38 has a lid 40 which is connected to the chute by a hinge along its back edge so that the top of the chute can be opened by swinging the lid 40 upwardly to the open position illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 6-8. The chute provides an inner, charge chamber 42. The lid includes a latch (not illustrated in the drawings) for keeping the lid in the closed position illustrated in FIG. 2 when the packing mechanism 24 is not connected to the storage box 22.
As best illustrated in FIG. 4, the portable packing mechanism is connected to the storage box 22 by connecting means comprising shaped ends 44 of the packing mechanism frame which fit within channels 46 of the storage box. A locking pin 48 is inserted through corresponding holes in parts 46 and 44 to retain these parts in a locked condition. When the portable packing mechanism is to be disconnected from the storage box, the pin 46 is withdrawn and the parts 44 are retracted from the channels 46.
As best illustrated in FIGS. 5, 7 and 8, the packing mechanism 24 includes a platen 50 which is constructed to provide a close inner fit within the charging chamber 42 in the chute 38. The platen 50 is just slightly smaller than the top opening in the chute. The platen 50 is mounted for pivoting action along its back edge, and the bottom wall of the chute 38 is curved to substantially the same radius as the length of the platen so that the platen sweeps the charging chamber 42 clean on the downward, ejecting and compacting stroke as illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8.
Details of the construction and mounting of the platen 50 are best illustrated in FIG. 5.
As shown in FIG. 5, the portable packing mechanism 24 comprises a main or outer frame assembly 52 and an inner or subframe assembly 54.
The main frame 52 comprises vertical channel members 56, upper and lower side channel members 58 and 60 and two front channel members 62 and 64.
Wheels 66 are mounted in casters on the bottoms of the vertical frame members 56.
As noted above, the top side channels 58 have shaped ends 44 which fit within locking channels 46 on the storage box. Each side channel also has a hollow boss 68 which forms part of the pivot mount for the platen 50 and subframe or inner frame assembly 54, as will be described in greater detail below.
The outer panels of the subframe assembly are shown in phantom outline in FIG. 5 to permit a clear view of the underlying structure.
The subframe assembly 54 comprises two side channels 70 joined by a front channel 72. An additional lateral reinforcing member 74 is connected between the side channels 70 a short distance behind the front channel 72 as illustrated in FIG. 5.
Two upwardly extending side plates 76 are welded to the channel 72 and the reinforcing member 74 and to short braces 82; and a front plate 78 is welded to the side plates 76 and to the front channel 72 so that the plates 76 and 78 provide a rigid support for a shaft 84. The shaft 84 in turn provides a pivotal connection for the end of the hydraulic ram 86. As illustrated in FIG. 5, the cylinder of the ram 86 has a flanged end connection 90 formed with openings 92. The shaft 84 extends through the openings 92. See FIGS. 6-8. The opposite end of the hydraulic ram 86 has a similar flanged end connection 94 formed with openings 96, and a pivot shaft 98 passes through the openings 96 to connect the rod end of the ram to the platen 50.
The pivot shaft 98 is mounted within upstanding ears or lugs 100 on the top surface of the platen 50.
As illustrated in FIG. 5, the top surface of the platen is also preferably reinforced with internal braces I02 running the length of the platen and a series of laterally extending braces 104.
A tube 106 extends along the back edge of the platen 50. This tube is aligned with inwardly projecting bosses 108 at the back ends of the side channels 70 of the subframe assembly 54 and with the bosses 68 at the back ends of the top side channels 58 of the main frame assembly 52.
A pivot shaft 111 (see FIGS. 6-8) extends through the bosses 68 and 108 and the tube 106 to mount the entire subframe assembly 54 for pivoting movement within the main frame assembly 52 and also to permit the platen 50 to pivot within the subframe assembly 54.
The subframe assembly 54 includes downwardly extending legs 110 at the rear ends of the side channels 70. Gussets 112 are welded between the legs 110 and the channels 70 to provide a rigid connection.
Counter springs 114 are connected to the lower ends of the legs 110 and to points near the front of the side channels 58 of the main frame assembly 52 to bias the subframe assembly 54 toward the upper, open position illustrated in FIG. 6.
The ram 86 is powered by a hydraulic motor mounted on the main frame assembly 52 beneath a covering enclosure 116.
The hydraulic motor is driven by an electric motor 118, the end of which is shown in FIG. 5. The electric motor 118 is operated off of standard I volt lines.
Hydraulic lines 120 and 122 extend between the ram 86 and the hydraulic motor, and a control lever 124 controls the direction of flow of pressurized hydraulic fluid from the hydraulic motor to the ram through these lines to extend and to retract the ram.
When the ram 86 is extended to drive the platen 50 downward through the charge chamber 42 there is a reaction which would tend to swing the subframe assembly 54 upward if the front part of this subframe assembly were not latched securely to the chute 38.
The chute 38 therefore has a latching bar 126 (see FIGS. 2 and 10) rigidly attached to the front top edge of the chute; and an overcenter latching mechanism,
6 indicated generally by the reference numeral 130 in FIGS. 3, 6-8 and 10, in mounted on the front channel 72 of the subframe assembly 54.
The details of construction of this overcenter latching mechanism are best shown in FIGS. 3 and 10. The latch mechanism comprises a pair of mounting flanges 132 which are welded to the channel 72. A pivot shaft 134 extends through these flanges 132, and two bars 136 are connected at their lower ends to the shaft 134.
A second pivot shaft 138 extends between and through the bars 136 in the central part of the bars 136, and a generally L-shaped latch element 140 has generally vertically extending legs 142 connected at their upper ends to the pivot shaft 138. The latch member 140 has a generally horizontally extending lower plate 144 formed with an upwardly extending lip 146 at the extreme forward end of the plate 144.
A handle 148 extends between the upper ends of the bars 136.
The operation of the overcenter latch mechanism 130 is best illustrated in FIG. 10 in which the latch mechanism is shown being swung into position in the phantom outline and then locked in the latched position in the solid outline. In this locked position, the lip 146 is engaged very tightly with the lower surface of the angle piece 126 on the chute 38 to hold the entire subframe assembly 54 in the closed position illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8 during the ejecting and compacting stroke of the ram 86 and platen 50.
The chute 38 preferably has a sump near the bottom of the chute for collecting liquids which are extruded out of the waste material by the action of the platen 50. The sump also has a drain for draining the sump prior to dumping the storage box.
In the operation of the compactor 20, the portable packing mechanism 24 is rolled into position over the top of the chute 38 after the lid 40 has been raised. The packing mechanism is then connected to the storage box by the locking arrangement shown in FIG. 4, and the entire subframe assembly 54 is raised to the position illustrated in FIG. 6. The waste material is loaded into the chute 38 through the top opening, the subframe assembly 54 is lowered to a closed position, and the latch mechanism 130 is locked. The operator moves the control lever 124 to drive the platen downwardly through the charge chamber 42 as illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8 to eject and compact the material into the interior of the storage box 30. This operation is repeated until the storage box is completely filled with compacted waste material. The packing mechanism is disconnected from the storage box and removed, and the lid 40 is closed and latched. The storage box is then ready for dumping by a truck as illustrated in FIG. 9.
As soon as the portable packing mechanism 24 has been disconnected from the storage box 22, it can be rolled into place and connected to a new storage box.
To those skilled in the art to which this invention relates. many changes in construction and widely differing embodiments and applications of the invention will suggest themselves without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. The disclosures and the description herein are purely illustrative and are not intended to be in any sense limiting.
1. A compactor for compacting and storing waste material, said compactor comprising a storage box having an enclosed storage space for storing the compacted material and having charge chamber means for receiving the material to be compacted, said charge chamber means including a chute connected integrally with the storage box and forming a charge chamber space for loading separate from said storage space, a separate and portable packing mechanism including a platen and power means for driving the platen through the charge chamber means to eject and compact the material from the charge chamber means into the storage box, and connecting means for detachably connecting the packing mechanism to the storage box whereby a single packing mechanism with a selfcontained platen can be used with a number of storage boxes and none of the storage boxes needs to include a platen.
2. The invention defined in claim 1 wherein the charge chamber means include a top loading chute which extends outwardly from one wall of the storage box.
3. A compactor for compacting and storing waste material, said compactor comprising, a storage box for storing the compacted material and having charge chamber means for receiving the material to be compacted and stored, a packing mechanism including a platen and power means for driving the platen through the charge chamber means to eject and compact the material from the charge chamber means into the storage box, and connecting means for detachably connecting the packing mechanism to the storage box whereby a single packing mechanism can be used with a number of storage boxes, and wherein the charge chamber means include a top opening for loading the material into the charge chamber means, the packing mechanism includes a main frame assembly and a subframe assembly and the subframe is positionable over said opening to close the opening when the packing mechanism is connected to the storage box by said connecting means, the subframe assembly includes a platen and platen pivot means pivotally connnecting the platen in the subframe, said power means include a ram connected in the subframe assembly for swinging the platen about said pivot and through the charge chamber means, and wherein the compactor includes a subframe pivotal connection between the subframe assembly and the main frame assembly which permits the entire subframe assembly to be swung upwardly about the pivot to open said charge chamber opening.
4. The invention defined in claim 3 including latching means for latching the subframe assembly to the charge chamber means to hold the subframe assembly in the closed position over said opening during the power stroke of the platen.
5. The invention defined in claim 4 wherein the charge chamber means include a chute and the latching means include a movable hook on the subfreme assembly and a fixed stop on the chute.
6. The invention defined in claim 4 wherein the latching means include an overcenter link mechanism on the subframe assembly.
7. The invention defined in claim 6 wherein the overcenter mechanism includes a handle for operating the mechanism and for raising the subframe assembly about said pivotal connection.
8. The invention defined in claim 3 wherein the ram is a hydraulic ram and the power means include a hydraulic motor mounted on the main frame assembly.
9. The invention defined in claim 3 including a counter spring connected between the subframe assembly and the main frame assembly for biasing the sub.- frame assembly toward the opened position.
10. The invention defined in claim 3 wherein the connecting means include channels on the storage box and end part on the main frame assembly which interfit in the channels when the packing mechanism is connected to the storage box.
1 l. The invention defined in claim 3 and wherein the charge chamber means include a chute and a lid pivotally connected to the chute for movement between an open position in which the packing mechanism can be connected to the storage box and a closed position for covering said opening when the packing mechanism is disconnected from the storage box.
12. The invention defined in claim 3 including wheels on the main frame for transporting the packing mechanism as a portable unit.
13. The invention defined in claim 1 wherein the storage box includes a hinged top and lift arm receptacles for facilitating the dumping of compacted material from the storage box.
14. A method for compacting and storing waste material, said method comprising,
a. moving a portable packing mechanism into a position in which a movable platen of the packing mechanism is movable down through a top opening and through a charging chamber of a storage box,
b. swinging the platen upwardly about a pivot on one edge to uncover the opening in the charging chamber for loading of waste materials into the charging chamber,
c. closing the opening by swinging the platen downward about said pivot,
d. latching the packing mechanism to the storage box in the closed position,
e. powering the platen downward about the pivot to eject and compact the material from the charging chute into the storage box,
f. repeating steps (b) through (c) until the storage box is filled with compacted material, and
g. disconnecting the packing mechanism from the storage box.
15. The invention defined in claim 14 including covering the opening in the charging chute by closing a chute lid after the packing mechanism has been disconnected and removed.
16. The invention defined in claim 15 including dumping the compacted material out of the storage box.
17. The invention defined in claim 14 including repeating steps (a) through (g) with a different storage box.