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Publication numberUS531860 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 1, 1895
Filing dateDec 11, 1893
Publication numberUS 531860 A, US 531860A, US-A-531860, US531860 A, US531860A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Of memphis
US 531860 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

(No Model.)


i GANG PLANK. No. 531,860'. Patented Jan. 1, 1895.

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ver? fo r` 3o the water.

5o novel construction.




SPECIFICATION forming part of Letters Yatent No. 531,860, dated January 1, 1895. Application tiled December 11, 1893. Serial No. 49 3,431, (No model.)

To all whom t may concern: v

Be it known thatI, JOHN BOWERS RHODES,

a citizen of the United States, residing at Memphis, in the county of Shelby and State 5 of Tennessee, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in Gang-Flanke; and I do hereby declare the following to be a full,` clear, and exact description of the invention, such as will enable others skilled in the art to io which it appertains to make and use the same.

This invention relates to an improvement in gang planks for transferring merchandise from the deck of a vessel to the wharf or shore-bank, or vice versa, and the object in I r 5 view is to provide simple, strong and durable 2o vessel to the wharf or bank.

In loading or unloading a steamer or vessel at wharves it is not unfrequently the case that the gang plank is pitched at such an angle that it is difficult for the deck hands or 2 5 laborers to expeditiously transport the freight to or from the deck, and it sometimes occurs, wherethe bank or wharf is considerably above the level of the deck, that the deck-hand slips and falls and the freight is precipitated into I overcome this objection by providing an improved gang plank on which the freight can be placed and carried to the wharf or deck according as it is desired to transport the freight from either the shore or deck; and

3 5 to the accomplishment of these ends, the rst of my invention consists in the combination with a supporting frame comprising longitudinal side pieces or gunnels, of a dxed track supported within said frame and extending 4o longitudinally thereof, and a traveling conveyer provided with rollers adapted to travel on said longitudinal fixed track and supported by suitable transverse shafts at the ends of the supporting frame, one of which shafts serve as the means for propelling the conveyer.

My invention further consists in the combination with a suitable supporting frame such as herein referred to, of a conveyor of In the preferred embodiment of my conveyor for gang planks, I

provide two endless chains which are arranged side by side at a suitable distance from each other, and each conveyor consists of links which are forked or bifurcated at one end to embrace the tail of the preceding link and has its other end recessed to accommodate a friction roller; and through the meeting ends is passed a pin which serves to pivotally conneet the links and the shaft on which the friction roller is mounted so as to be free to rotate when it rides upon the track Within the supporting frame. Each link of the chains is provided with a socket on its inner face to accommodate a tooth on the sprocket of the driving or idler wheels; and the corresponding links of the two chains are fastened to a transverse slat in any suitable way. Each slat is thus fastened to corresponding links of the adjacent endless chains, and thus the conveyer is practically made of endless chains which carry a large number of slats which are exposed and forming practically a continuous surface on which the freight can he placed and at the same time this slatted surface has the necessary iexion motion to pass around the driving and idler sprocket wheels at the ends of the supporting frame, the conveyer thus constructed being prevented from sagging under the weight of its load by the friction rollers riding upon the longitudinal fixed track beneath the upper side of the conveyer.

My invention further consists in the peculiar construction of parts and combination of devices as will be hereinafter more fully described and pointed out in the claims.

I have illustrated the preferred embodiment of my invention in the accompanying drawings, forming a part of this specification, in which- Figure l is a plan view of my improved gang plank. Fig. 2 is a view partly in side elevation and partly broken away to show the interior construction of the gang plank at one end thereof. Fig. 3 is a view partly in section and partly in elevation showing one of the track rails, the friction rollers bearing thereon, two of ythe chain-links and the slats connected to said links. Fig. d is an enlarged detail view, in bottom plan, of a series of links of two adjacent links and the friction rollerv IOO and their friction rollers, to more clearly show the construction of the links, the manner of connecting them together, and supports for the friction rollers.

Referring to the drawings, in which like letters of reference indicate corresponding parts in all the figures, A denotes the supporting frame of my improved gang plank, and B is the endless con veyer which is arranged within said frame and supported thereby in operative position. This frame, A, comprises two outside gunnels or side pieces, c, c, and a series of transverse pieces or bars, @,d, which extend across the frame and are rigidly fastened to the side pieces to present asubstantial durable structure. rIhe transverse pieces or bars, d, are of less width than the gunnels and they are secured centrally thereto so as to lie within the edges of said gunnels, as indicated in Fig. 2. To the upper sides of these transverse bars, d, are secured the stringers, D, D, which extend longitudinally of the frame A, parallel with the gunnels, c, and which stringers form the track on which the friction rollers of the endless conveyer are designed to ride or bear to prevent the conveyer from sagging under the load on the slats thereof. At one end of the supporting frame and the track, is arranged a transverse shaft, E, which is suitably journaled in the frame; and on this shaft is provided the sprocket wheels, e, with which engage the chains of the conveyer. One end of this shaft is extended beyond one of the gunnels, c, and on this protruding end of the shaft is secured a gear pinion, f, which is designed to mesh with a driving pinion, indicated at g, in Fig. l, which driving pinion is carried by a shaft which has connections with conveyer.

The endless conveyer consists of the chains, E', F, and the transverse slats, G, which are secured to the adjacent links of the chains. Each chain is made up of aseries of links, g', of the form shown by Figs. 3 and et of the drawings, and the wide end of each link is forked or bifurcated to The links are pivoted by means of the transverse pin, I, which is passed through the lugs gof one link and the narrow recessed end of the adjacent link, and said pin also passes through the friction roller, H, and serves as the support there for, said roller being free to revolve on the pin or shaft. Each link is further provided with a socket, J, which is made in the solid central part thereof between the forked wide end and the narrow recessed end, and this socket receives the tooth on the sprocketvwheels 1ocated at the ends of the supporting frame.y

The sla'ts, G, extend across from one chain to the other, and they are fastened to said senseo chains by means of the transverse screws or bolts, j, which pass through the slats and into a threaded socket in the solid part of the link. The slats are fastened to the links at Width that the side edges thereof overhang the adjacent rollers, as indicated in Fig. 4, the lower inner edges of the slats being recessed as at k to adapt the rollers to lit snugly and make a compact construction. n

At the end of the frame A opposite to the driving shaft E isjournaled an idler shaft, L, which is provided with sprocket wheels, Z, and forming the support for the far end of the conveyer.

This being the construction of my gang plank, the operation may be briefly described as followsz-The end of. the gang plank having the idler shaft and wheels is shoved out from the deck to rest on the wharf or bank while the other end of the gang gear and its shaft that the wheelfthereof meshes with the driving gear. The conveyer is thus propelled by the driving gear, and the freight or merchandise is placed on one end of the conveyer and carried'to the other end" without the intervention of manual labor, whereby the steamer can be loaded and unloaded with dispatch.

In practice I prefer to make the gunnels or wldth that the lower side of the conveyer will not contact with the wharf or the deck.

I-Iaving thus fully described my invention, what I claim as new, and desire to secure by Letters Patent, is- 1. A gang plank, substantially such as described, comprising a suitable frame, longitudinal track-strlngers fixed within the sides of said frame, driving and idler shafts journaled in the respective ends of the frame and provided with sprocket wheels, the endless chains passing around the sprocket wheels of said shafts and having each of the pivoted with a recess or socket between the wide and narrow end thereof to receive teeth on the sprocket wheels and each link provided with a friction roller, within its narrow end, which rides upon one of said longitudinal stringers, and transverse slats fastened to the middle of corresponding links in the endless chains and said slats having their edges overhanging the friction rollers, as and for the purposes described.

2. In a gang plank, substantially such as described, the endless chains consisting of pivoted links, each link of which is cast in a single piece with a wide forked end, a narrow slotted end, anda tooth-receiving socket in the solid middle portion between said ends, the shafts or pins each of which passes through the narrow slotted end of one link and the wide forked end of an adjoining link, and a friction roller fitted on each shaft or pin and within the narrow slotted end of the link, in combination with a frame, track- IOO IIO

stringers fixed within the sides of the trarne for the friction rollers of the chains to ride thereon, driving and idler shafts journaled in the frame beyond the stringers and having sprocket Wheels which have their teeth itted in the sockets ot the links, and slatsjastened to the links of the chains, as and for the purposes described.

5. In a. gang plank, substantially snch as described, the endless chains consisting of links each of which is made in a single piece with a, slot at one end, forked arms at its other end, a tooth receiving socket in the inner face of its solid middle portion, and

with a. threaded aperture for islet-fastening screw, the pins which pivot the lapped ends of seid links together, and friction rollers jonrnaled on said pins within the slotted ends of the links, combined with a. frame, longitudinal track-stringere therein for the friction rollers to ride upon, driving and idler shafts provided with sprocket Wheels Which engage the socketed middle parts of the chain-links, and slats fastened to the chain links by screws that work in the threaded apertures of said links and said slats having their edges recessed to overhang the friction rollers, as and for the purposes described.

In testimony whereof l efx: my sign attire in presence of two Witnesses.



Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US6481037 *Apr 14, 1999Nov 19, 2002Trans-Ramp Pty LtdArticulated ramp assembly
US6945387 *May 3, 2004Sep 20, 2005Christensen Franz GBottom surface drive for an endless belt in a conveyor system
Cooperative ClassificationB63B27/22