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Publication numberUS3900073 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 19, 1975
Filing dateOct 15, 1974
Priority dateOct 15, 1974
Publication numberUS 3900073 A, US 3900073A, US-A-3900073, US3900073 A, US3900073A
InventorsCrum William Norman
Original AssigneeCrum William Norman
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Earth working device with predetermined grade indicating assembly
US 3900073 A
Abstract
A device that may be mounted on a power moved vehicle, which vehicle adjustably supports an earth working blade, and the device visually informing the operator seated on the vehicle when the blade is forming a swath of earth over which the vehicle travels to a desired predetermined grade both transversely and longitudinally relative to the vehicle. The device so visually informs the operator by the position of first and second bubbles in first and second liquid filled tubes that are adjacently positioned first and second grade indicating graduated members rigidly secured to the vehicle. First and second pivotally and adjustably supported needles may be moved relative to the first and second tubes and graduated members, with the needles initially being set to indicate the desired predetermined grades on the graduated members when the lower cutting edge of the blade is in a horizontal position.
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United States Patent [1 1 Crum [ Aug. 19, 1975 EARTH WORKING DEVICE WITH PREDETERMINED GRADE INDICATING ASSEMBLY William Norman Crum, 351 1 E. 20th St., Highland, Calif. 92346 22 Filed: Oct. 15, 1974 21 App1.No.:514,462

[76] Inventor:

37/D1G. l9, DIG. 20; 33/185 V, 264, 275 R, 354, 381, 382; 116/124 F, 129 A, 129 T;

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,483,242 2/1924 Pearce 33/382 1,847,728 3/1932 Schmid 172/430 2,109,044 2/1938 Grieve 1 33/264 2,503,408 4/1950 Phillips 33/185 V 2,919,490 l/l960 Bethany... 33/185 V 3,111,070 11/1963 Pollitz 37/D1G. 20 UX 3,378.932 4/1968 Neill 33/354 3,531,808 10/1970 McCue 33/354 X 3,846,781 11/1974 Smith 37/DlG. 19 X Primary ExaminerRichard C. Pinkham Assistant Examiner-R. T, Stouffer Attorney, Agent, or FirmWilliam C. Babcock [57] ABSTRACT A device that may be mounted on a power moved vehicle, which vehicle adjustably supports an earth working blade, and the device visually informing the operator seated on the vehicle when the blade is forming a swath of earth over which the vehicle travels to a desired predetermined grade both transversely and longitudinally relative to the vehicle. The device so visually informs the operator by the position of first and second bubbles in first and second liquid filled tubes that are adjacently positioned first and second grade indicating graduated members rigidly secured to the vehicle. First and second pivotally and adjustably supported needles may be moved relative to the first and second tubes and graduated members, with the needles initially being set to indicate the desired predetermined grades on the graduated members when the lower cutting edge of the blade is in a horizontal positron.

The first and second needles are by mechanical linkages connected with the blade of the vehicle. The operator after the first and second needles have been set as above described tilts the blade transversely and raises or lowers the blade relative to the vehicle, preparing the vehicle to move forwardly. When the vehicle moves over the swath of earth that is being formed by the blade, the vehicle will tilt in conformity with the formed grade. The operator is able to control the accuracy of keeping the blade of the vehicle at the proper elevation and slope by adjusting the blade so that the first and second indicating needles are in alignment with the first and second bubbles as the blade cuts or fills to the predetermined grade.

7 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures PMENTED B 3 900 073 EARTH WORKING DEVICE WITH PREDETERMINED GRADE INDICATING ASSEMBLY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention Predetermined grade indicating device.

2. Description of the Prior Art Power moved devices that include angularly adjustable blades for forming earth to a desired grade are widely use. On such devices the blade may be adjusted and tilted transversely relative to the supporting vehicle, as well as raised or lowered thereto. In the past, there has been no device that would visually indicate to an operator seated on the vehicle that the blade as the vehicle moves forwardly so forming the swath of earth to a desired predetermined grades both transversely and longitudinally relative to the vehicle.

A primary object in devising the present invention is to supply a device that is rigidly secured to the vehicle, and by first and second pivotally movable needles in association with first and second bubble tubes and first and second graduations visually indicating to an operator when the vehicle is forming a swath of earth to a desired predetermined longitudinal and transverse grades. The first and second needles are operatively associated with the blade in such a manner as to be responsive to transverse tilting and the raising or lowering of the blade relative to the vehicle.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention is used with an earth working device of the type that includes a power moved vehicle having a seat for an operator thereon. An earth working blade is movably supported from the vehicle and may be angularly tilted transversely and raised or lowered relative to the vehicle, with the blade having a lower cutting edge. Manually operated control means are provided on the vehicle adjacent the operator and may be utilized to guide the vehicle and raise and lower the blade relative to the vehicle as well as tilt the blade transversely.

The present invention is mounted on the vehicle adjacent the operator and visually indicates to the operator when the blade is forming a swath of earth over which the vehicle travels to predetermined grade both transversely and longitudinally relative to the vehicle.

The invention includes first and second flat members that are rigidly mounted on the vehicle adjacent the seat for the operator, with the members having first and second grade indicating graduations thereon. First and second bubble tubes are mounted on the first and second members adjacent the first and second graduations, with first and second bubbles in the first and second tubes occupying first and second positions. First and second shafts are rotatably supported on said first and second members and are substantially normal thereto. First and second needles are adjustably supported from the first and second shafts, with the needles extending towards the first and second graduations, when the blade has the lower edge thereof horizontally disposed.

First and second means are provided that may be manually operated by the operator for locking the first and second needles in desired non-rotatable positions relative on the first and second shafts with the first and second needles when so locked being so oriented as to extend towards predetermined grades that are desired to be formed. Third and fourth means are provided that operatively connect the first and second needles with the blade, with the first needle pivoting relative to the first tube and first graduation when the blade is pivoted transversely relative to the vehicle. Fourth means operatively connect the second needle and blade, with the second needle pivoting relative to the second tube and second graduation when the blade is raised or lowered relative to the vehicle to a second longitudinal position. The operator is visually informed as the vehicle moves forwardly over the swath of earth, that the swath has been formed to the predetermined grades when the first and second bubbles are centered on the first and second needles that have been locked in the predetermined grade indicating positions by use of the first and second means.

Some of the advantages of the invention are:

a. Operator can accurately maintain a slope or grade for long distances between grade stakes by use of the invention on machine.

b. Invention on machine provides means by which operator can check own grade to a great extent by placing blade in connection with a known grade, such as grade stake, and move forward with indicators set accordingly.

c. Invention will assist experienced operator in getting closer to grade.

d. Invention will assist in the training of apprentice operators.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the predetermined grade indicating device illustrated as mounted on a tractor, which tractor movably supports a bulldozer blade that may be tilted transversely as well as raised or lowered relative to the vehicle, and the mechanical connections between the indicating device and blade being illustrated in phantom line;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged perspective view of the visual indicating device in which first and second needles in conjunction with first and second grade indicating graduated members and first and second bubble tubes cooperate with cable and linkage means connected to the bulldozer blade to indicate to an operator when the blade is forming a swath of earth over which the vehicle travels to a desired predetermined grade both transversely and longitudinally relative to the vehicle;

FIG. 3 is a front elevational view of the first visual indicating device and a segment of the bulldozer blade with which it is operatively associated, which device indicates the transverse tilt of the blade, with the first needle shown in solid line being centered on a first bubble when the lower edge of the blade is in a horizontal position, and the first needle being shown in phantom line after it has been manually adjusted on a first shaft to indicate a desired predetermined grade that is to be formed on a swath of earth over which the vehicle and blade move;

FIG. 4 is the same view as shown in FIG. 3, but now visually indicating to the operator that the blade that has been tilted is now forming the swath of earth over which the vehicle travels to the desired predetermined transverse grade to which the needle was manually adjusted in FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a side elevational view illustrating one form of mechanical means that is operatively connected to the bulldozer blade and to the visual indicating portion of the invention to reflect the transverse and angular movement of the blade relative to the vehicle;

FIG. 6 is a top plan view of the components shown in FIG. and illustrating the mechanical means by which transverse tilting and the raising or lowering movement of the blade relative to the vehicle may be transmitted to the visual indicator means shown in FIG.

FIG. 7 is a side elevational view of a portion of the visual indicating means that indicates to the operator when the vehicle is so moving the blade over a swath of earth as to form the latter to a desired predetermined longitudinal grade;

FIG. 8 is a vertical cross sectional view of a portion of the invention shown in FIG. 7 taken on the line 8-8 thereof;

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary side elevational and vertical cross sectional view of a portion of the blade and connections to components operatively associated therewith that reflect the transverse tilting and the raising or lowering movement of the blade relative to the supporting vehicle; and

FIG. 10 is a diagrammatic view in which the second needle assembly is set to visually inform an operator when a predetermined grade has been attained longitudinally relative to the vehicle.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The invention A is illustrated in the drawings as being mounted on a power operated tractor B that includes a seat C for the operator (not shown) and a hood D. The tractor B has first and second forwardly extending arms E-l and E-2 pivotally supported from opposite sides thereof as shown in FIG. 1. The forward end of the arms E-l and E--2 are pivotally connected to a transversely extending bulldozer blade F that has a lower cutting edge 10.

First and second hydraulic cylinder assemblies G-1 and G-2 are pivotally supported from the tractor B and are connected by means (not shown) to the rearward surface portion of the bulldozer blade F. The cylinder assemblies G-1 and G-2 include conduits 12 and 14 for supplying fluid under pressure thereto. The assemblies G-1 and G-2 are concurrently operable to pivot the first and second arms E-l and E-2 and blade F upwardly and downwardly relative to the vehicle to a desired angle with the horizontal.

A second hydraulic assembly H is pivotally con nected to the arm E-l, and to the blade F, to pivot the blade relative to the forward ends of the arms E-] and B2. Controls J are provided adjacent the seat C for the operator (not shown) to control the forward movement of the tractor B as well as to control the flow of pressurized hydraulic fluid to the first and second hydraulic assemblies G-I and G-2 and assembly H is shown in FIG. 1.

The blade F has an upper edge I6 that is parallel to the lower cutting edge 10. The invention A as may be seen in FIG. 2, includes first and second flat members 18 and 18' that are substantially identical to one another, with the first member 18 being shown in detail in FIGS. 3 and 4. The first and second members 18 and 18 support first and second inverted semi-circular, transparent tubes 20 and 20' that are filled with a liquid in which first and second bubbles 22 and 22 are defined. The tubes 20 and 20 are secured to the surfaces of the first and second members 18 and 18 most adjacent the seat C, by conventional means (not shown). The first and second members 18 and 18 adjacent the first and second tubes 20 and 20 have first and second graduations 24 and 24 defined thereon, which graduations indicate a sequence of grades of increasing magnitude to which the blade F may be used to form a swath of earth over which the tractor B travels.

The first and second members 18 and l8'rotatably support transverse positioned first and second shafts 26 and 26', which shafts project outwardly from the first and second surfaces 18a and 18a of the first and second members 18 and 18'. The end portions of the first and second shafts 26 and 26 most adjacent the seat C, each have circular body shoulders 28 formed thereon from which a threaded extension 30 projects as shown in FIG. 8.

First and second needles K and K are provided that have openings 32 therein through which extensions 30 project. First and second knurled nuts L and L are provided that engage the third extensions 30 and when tightened the first and second needles K and k are gripped between the body shoulders 28 and the nuts to be held at a desired fixed non-rotatable position relative to the shafts 26 and 26. Both the first and second needles K and K are held on the first and second shafts 26 and 26' in the same manner as shown in detail in FIG. 8.

The forwardly extending end of the first shaft 26 is rigidly secured in axial alignment to an elongate flexible member such as a speedometer cable 34 as shown in FIGS. 2 and 9 that is rotatably supported within a protective tubular sheath 36. The forward end of the cable 34 is rigidly secured to an elongate pin 38 of noncircular transverse cross section. The pin 38 is slidably inserted in an elongate cavity 40 of non-circular transverse cross section that is snuggly engaged by the pin, with the cavity being defined in a short stub shaft 42 that is secured by welding beads 44 or other fastening means to a center rearward portion of the blade F as shown in FIG. 9.

By use of the nut L, the first needle K as shown in solid line in FIG. 3 is adjusted on the shaft 26 to be centered relative to the bubble 22 when the lower edge of the blade 10 is in a horizontal position. When it is desired to use the first needle K to indicate to the operator (not shown) that the blade F is tilted to form the earth to a predetermined grade normal to the direction of movement of the vehicle B thereover the nut L is loosened, and the first needle pivoted to point to the desired grade as shown on the graduation 24, with the nut then being tightened to hold the first needle K in the non-rotatable position relative to the first shaft 26 as shown in phantom line in FIG. 3.

When the first needle K is so adjusted, the upper edge 16 of the blade F as well as the lower edge 10 will be horizontally disposed. The operator (not shown) now causes the tractor B to move forwardly, with the blade F tilted transversely to form the swath of earth over which the tractor B travels to the desired predetermined grade for which the first needle K has been adjusted. As the vehicle moves over the swath formed by the blade F, the vehicle will tilt transversely and the needle K, tube 20, member 18 will move relative to the first bubble 22, and the operator being assured that the predetermined grade has been attained when the needle K is centered on the first bubble 22 as shown in FIG. 4.

The second needle K is utilized by the operator (not shown) to determine in conjunction with the second bubble 22' when the blade F is working the swath of earth over which the vehicle B travels to a predetermined longitudinally extending grade. In FIG. the needle K has been set on the second graduation 24 in the same manner as previously described in connection with the first needle K. On the right hand portion of FIG. 10, the second graduation 24', second needle K and second bubble 22' are again shown, with the second needle now centered on the bubble 22 which indicates to the operator (not shown) of the vehicle B that the predetermined grade to which a second needle K had been set on the second graduation 24 had been attained.

Actuation of the second needle K by raising or lowering the blade F relative to the tractor B by concurrent pivoting of the first and second arms B1 and B2 is attained by the assembly M shown in FIGS. 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9. The second shaft 26' has an arm 46 rigidly secured thereto, and the arm by a pin or screw 48 on the outer extremity thereof being pivotally connected to a rearward end ofa first rigid link 50. The forward end of the link 50 is pivotally connected by means 52 to an L- shaped member N that has a first leg 54 and second leg 56. The L-shaped member N is pivotally supported at thisjunction of first and second legs 54 and 56 at a convenient location on the vehicle B from a bracket 56 that has a pin 58 associated therewith as shown in FIG. 5. The second leg 56 is of non-circular transverse cross section and slidably movable in an elongate sleeve 60 of like non-circular transverse cross section as may best be seen in FIG. 6, which sleeve has the forward end thereof rigidly secured to an L-shaped member 62.

The L-shaped member 62 includes a first leg 62a to which the forward end of the sleeve 60 is attached, and the second leg 62b of the member is by a pin 64 pivotally connected to a bracket 66 as shown in FIG. 9. The bracket 66 is rigidly secured to a sleeve 68 as shown in FIG. 9 that is rotatably mounted on a stub shaft 42. The rearward end of the stub shaft is grooved and is engaged by a spring clip 70 to prevent the sleeve 68 being inadvertently displaced from the stub shaft 42.

The sleeve 68 has threads 68a formed on the rearward external end portion thereof, with these threads being engaged by internal threads on a cap 72. Cap 72 has a tubular boss 74 extending rearwardly therefrom. The forward end portion of the sheath 36 is mounted within the confines of the boss 74. A circular stop 76 is rigidly secured to the rearward portion of the pin 38. The stop 76 is of sufficient transverse area as to prevent the cable 34 and pin 38 moving rearwardly relative to stub shaft 42 to disengage the pin 38 from the cavity 40.

The invention A is illustrated in the drawings as mounted on a tractor B that adj ustably supports a blade F. However, the invention can be used on any earth working vehicle that has an earth working blade adjustably supported therefrom.

The use and operation of the invention A has been previously described in detail both as to structure and mode of use and this information need not be repeated.

I claim:

1. In combination with an earth working device of the type that includes a power movable vehicle having a support for an operator; an earth working blade movably supported from said vehicle that may be angulary tilted both transversely and longitudinally relative thereto, said blade having a lower edge; manually operated control means adjacent said support that may be manipulated by said operator to guide said vehicle and tilt said blade; an assembly for visually indicating to said operator when said vehicle is moving said blade to form a swath in the earth of a predetermined grade both transversely and longitudinally; said assembly including:

a. first and second flat members rigidly mounted on said vehicle adjacent said support, said members having first and second grade indicating graduations thereon;

b. first and second bubble tubes mounted on said first and second members adjacent said first and second graduations, with first and second bubbles in said first and second tubes occupying first positions when said blade has said lower edge thereof hori- Zontally disposed;

c. first and second shafts rotatably supported in said first and second members and normal thereto;

. first and second needles adjustably and pivotally supported from said first and second shafts, said first and second needles extending towards said first and second graduations;

e. first and second means that are manually operable by said operator for locking said first and second needles in desired non-rotatable positions relative to said first and second shafts, with said first and second needles being so locked when they are ori' ented on said first and second shafts to point to said first and second graduations to predetermined grades that are desired to be formed;

f. third means operatively associated with said first needle and blade that moves said first needle rela tive to said first tube and first graduations when said blade is pivoted transversely relative to said vehicle to a second transverse position;

g. fourth means operatively associated with said second needle and blade that moves said second needle relative to said second tube and second graduations when said blade is pivoted longitudinally relative to said vehicle to second longitudinal position, with said operator being visually informed as said vehicle moves over said swath that the latter has been formed to said predetermined grades when said first and second bubbles are centered on said first and second needles that have been locked in said predetermined grade indicating positions.

2. An assembly as defined in claim 1 in which the ends of said first and second shafts most adjacent said seat have said first and second means movably mounted thereon, with said first and second means when moved from first to second positions permitting said first and second needles to be rotated on said first and second shafts to desired circumferential positions thereon, and said first and second means when moved from said second to said first positions locking said first and second needles in non-rotatable positions relative to said first and second shafts.

3. An assembly as defined in claim 1 in which said third means is an elongate flexible member that has a first end rigidly connected to said first shaft and a second end to substantially the center of the surface of said blade opposite to the earth moving surface of the latter.

4. An assembly as defined in claim 3 in which said flexible elongate member is a cable, and said assembly in addition including an elongate tubular sheath in which said cable is rotatably supported.

5. An assembly as defined in claim 1 in which said fourth means includes:

h. an arm rigidly secured to said second shaft and exl. a first link that pivotally connects said arm and first leg;

m. a second elongate sleeve that slidably engages said second leg; and

n. a rigid member that has first and second ends, said first end rigidly secured to said first sleeve and said second end pivotally connected to said second sleeve.

6. An assembly as defined in claim 5 in which said third means is a cable that has first and second ends with the said first end attached to said first shaft and said second end to said stub shaft.

7. An assembly as defined in claim 6 which in addition includes a protective tubular sheath in which said cable is rotatably supported.

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
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US4044610 *Mar 10, 1976Aug 30, 1977Akermans Verkstad AbExcavators
US4288056 *Oct 26, 1979Sep 8, 1981Atlas Copco AktiebolagDevice for setting the direction and/or the inclination of an elongated rock drilling apparatus
US4828045 *Nov 9, 1987May 9, 1989J. I. Case CompanyDozer blade visual tilt indicator
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Classifications
U.S. Classification172/430, 33/354, 116/300, 33/624, 172/4.5
International ClassificationE02F3/84, E02F3/76, E02F9/26
Cooperative ClassificationE02F3/7618, E02F9/26, E02F3/845
European ClassificationE02F9/26, E02F3/76B4, E02F3/84B2