Title:
UNIVERSAL DETENT POSITIONER
United States Patent 3602245


Abstract:
A positioner is disclosed for use in a hydraulic directional control valve of the type having a valve body and a valve spool longitudinally slidable therein. The positioner is a detent mechanism having a resiliently biased, radially operative detent means and a locking-recess means cooperating therewith for releasably locking the spool in its valve spool positions. One embodiment of the recess means is a sleeve having several dissimilar longitudinal series of recesses spaced circumferentially around the sleeve. Either the sleeve or the detent means is positionable at a plurality of angular positions relative to the other so that the detent means may lockingly cooperate with a selected series of recesses. The recesses may be spaced around the exterior of the sleeve, in which case the detent means is spaced outwardly therefrom. Alternatively, the recesses may be spaced around the interior of the sleeve, in which case the detent means is spaced inwardly thereof. This detent mechanism provides standardized structures which can be mounted in several valves where each valve has a dissimilar series of valve functions. The locking-recess sleeve and the detent means are angularly positioned so that the detent means cooperates with the series of recesses on the sleeve corresponding to the valve spool positions of the particular control valve in which it is used. Similar embodiments are also disclosed for use with rotary valves.



Inventors:
MEISEL WILLIAM H
Application Number:
05/014364
Publication Date:
08/31/1971
Filing Date:
02/26/1970
Assignee:
ABEX CORP.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
74/527, 251/297
International Classes:
F16H63/38; F16K11/07; G05G5/06; (IPC1-7): F16K35/04; F16K51/00
Field of Search:
137/270 251
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
1903426Valve1933-04-11Hinz



Primary Examiner:
Klinksiek, Henry T.
Claims:
I claim

1. An improved detent positioner of the type used in a hydraulic control valve, the valve having a valve member movable within a valve body, the positioner including resiliently biased detent means for cooperating with locking-recesses formed on a locking-recess means for releasably locking the valve member in its valve positions, wherein the improvement comprises:

2. A valve detent mechanism having multiple, optional, dissimilar profiles for releasably locking a valve member which is movably mounted in a valve body in its valve positions the detent mechanism comprising:

3. A mechanism according to claim 2, wherein

4. A mechanism according to claim 3, wherein

5. A mechanism according to claim 3, wherein

6. A mechanism according to claim 3, wherein

7. A mechanism according to claim 6, wherein the sleeve is optionally mountable in any selected one of a plurality of angular positions.

8. A mechanism according to claim 6, wherein the detent means is optionally mountable in any selected one of a plurality of angular positions.

9. A valve mechanism according to claim 2, wherein the locking-recess means is a plate which is laterally optionally positionable and clamped to select a desired profile set of recesses.

10. A valve mechanism according to claim 9, wherein one of the means is mounted to a shift lever for operating the valve, and travels in an arcuate path centered at the pivot of the shift lever and the recesses of the locking-recess means are correspondingly arcuately arranged on the plate.

11. A valve mechanism according to claim 2, wherein the valve member is the rotor of a rotary valve and the locking-recess means comprises a segment of a ring having each series of recesses arranged along an arc concentric with the rotor.

12. A valve mechanism according to claim 11, wherein the locking-recess means comprises a ring concentric with the rotor.

13. A valve mechanism according to claim 11, wherein the profile sets are circularly spaced along the locking-recess means.

14. A valve mechanism according to claim 11, wherein the profile sets are longitudinally spaced on the locking-recess member.

15. A directional control valve detent mechanism having multiple dissimilar optional profiles for releasably locking in a series of valve positions, a valve spool which is slidably mounted in a valve body; the detent mechanism comprising:

16. A mechanism according to claim 15, wherein the sleeve is mounted on a shaft having a diametrical hole for receipt of a locking pin and the sleeve having a plurality of intersecting diametrical openings, a selected one of said diametrical openings being aligned with the diametrical hole of the shaft and having a pin therethrough for locking the sleeve in a selected one of said relative angular orientations.

17. A mechanism according to claim 15, wherein the sleeve is mounted of a shaft extending coaxially from the valve spool, the shaft having a plurality of intersecting diametrical holes for receipt of a locking pin and the sleeve having a diametrical opening, the diametrical opening being aligned with a selected one of the diametrical holes and having a pin therethrough for locking the sleeve in a selected one of said relative angular orientations.

18. A mechanism according to claim 15, wherein the ball detent comprises:

19. A mechanism according to claim 18, wherein the barrier means comprises lateral walls of the recesses.

20. A mechanism according to claim 18, wherein the barrier means comprises shoulders at the ball retaining surface of the valve body on opposite sides of the balls.

21. A mechanism according to claim 18, wherein the barrier means comprises shoulders on the ball retaining ring on opposite sides of the balls.

22. A directional control valve detent mechanism having multiple, dissimilar, optional profiles for releasably locking in a series of valve positions, a valve spool which is slidably mounted in a valve body, the detent mechanism comprising:

23. A mechanism according to claim 22, wherein mounting means is provided for mounting the sleeve to the valve body in a plurality of optional angular orientations for selecting a desired profile set.

24. A mechanism according to claim 22, wherein the ball detent member is coaxially mountable to the spool in a plurality of optional, angular orientations for selecting a desired profile set.

25. A mechanism according to claim 22, wherein the detent member comprises:

26. A mechanism according to claim 22, wherein the detents are inwardly radially biased; and the sleeve has the recesses spaced around its exterior and is keyed and bolted by means of screw and nut members to the valve body in a selected one of a plurality of angular orientations.

27. In a hydraulic system directional control valve of the type having a valve body and a valve spool longitudinally slidable therein and having a detent mechanism for releasably locking the valve in a plurality of valve positions, the improved detent mechanism comprising:

Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to valve positioners, and more particularly relates to an interchangeable detent mechanism for releasably locking the valve spool or rotor of a hydraulic control valve in its series of valve spool positions or rotor positions.

Hydraulic control valve spools, like their counterpart the rotor of rotary valves, must be positionable in several positions in order to provide desired flow conditions. Often it is desirable that the spool be moved to a particular position and be releasably locked in that position until it is moved to another position. One type of detent mechanism previously used to accomplish the releasable locking of the spool in its positions involves the use of a longitudinal series of parallel annular grooves into which spring-biased balls may seat. Each annular groove corresponds to one of the spool positions of a particular valve. Such types of detent mechanisms are shown in patents to Barnes et al. U.S. Pat. No. 3,438,399and to Williams U.S. Pat. No. 3,457,951.

The prior art has shown that a sleeve in which the annular grooves are cut may be mounted to the spool and the balls may be spring biased, inwardly operative and mounted to the body of the valve. Conversely, the spring-biased balls may be mounted to the spool and be outwardly radially biased and the sleeve may be mounted outwardly therefrom and fixed to the valve body. Furthermore, the balls may be mounted to the spool and inwardly biased, and the sleeve mounted concentrically inwardly of the balls and fixed to the valve body.

There are many types of control valves manufactured to offer not only diverse types of slow conditions but additionally to offer many diverse types of shift characteristics. The number of recesses in the detent mechanism, such as the annular grooves described above, and the relative spacing between the recesses must correspond to the spool positions, of each particular valve. Furthermore, the contour of each recess must be shaped to help provide the desired shift characteristics. Thus, each valve with its particular series of spool positions and having it particular shift characteristics requires a unique series of recesses for its detent mechanism.

To a manufacturer of such control valves, this means that a single unique detent mechanism, or at least a single unique part thereof, such as the sleeve, must be manufactured for each type of control valve. There is therefore a need for a single detent mechanism which can be interchangeably used with several types of control valves and yet still provide the unique series of recesses needed for each valve.

It is therefore an object of the invention to provide an improved detent mechanism.

Another object of the invention is to provide a detent mechanism which is interchangeable between several control valves and which may be optionally mounted in any of them to accommodate the particular valve states and shift characteristics needed for each valve.

Another object of the invention is to provide a detent mechanism which can be easily and quickly mounted in any of several types of control valves and in which selection of the desired series of recesses may be quickly and easily accomplished.

Further objects and features of my invention will be apparent from the following specification and claims when considered in connection with the accompanying drawings illustrating several embodiments of my invention.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The invention is a valve detent mechanism which has multiple optional profiles for releasably locking a valve member which is movably mounted in a valve body. The detent mechanism includes a detent means and a locking-recess means in releasable locking cooperation with the detent means. The locking-recess means has plurality of dissimilar profile sets of recesses, each profile set of recess providing one of the optional profiles, and each recess being positionable to receive the detent means. One of the means, either the detent means or the locking-recess means, is linked to the valve member for movement therewith. The other means is linked to the valve body for movement with it. Either the detent means or the locking-recess means is optionally mountable in any selected one of a plurality of positions to provide locking cooperation between the detent means and a selected profile set of recesses on the locking-recess means.

DESCRIPTION OF THE VIEWS

FIG. 1 is a view in vertical section showing a hand-operated control valve utilizing a preferred embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a view in perspective of the locking-recess sleeve illustrated in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an exploded view in perspective illustrating an alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 4 is a view in vertical section of the positioner of a control valve and illustrating an alternative detent mechanism constructed according to the invention;

FIG. 5 is a view in vertical section of the positioner of a control valve illustrating yet another alternative detent mechanism constructed according to the invention;

FIG. 6 is a view in vertical section of still another positioner of a control valve illustrating an alternative detent mechanism constructed according to the invention;

FIG. 7 is a view in vertical section of a control valve positioner illustrating yet another alternative detent mechanism constructed according to the invention;

FIG. 8 is an end view in vertical section of the detent mechanism illustrated if FIG. 7, taken substantially along the line 8--8 of FIG. 7;

FIG. 9 is a view in vertical section of the positioner of a control valve illustrating an alternative detent mechanism constructed according to the invention;

FIG. 10 is a view in section of a segment of an alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 11 is a view in section of a segment of an alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 12 is a view in section of a segment of an alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 13 is a view in vertical section of the positioner of a control valve illustrating yet another alternative detend mechanism constructed according to the invention;

FIG. 14 is a view in vertical section of the shift lever and end of a control valve illustrating an alternative detent mechanism constructed according to the invention;

FIG. 15 is a view in vertical section of an alternative embodiment of the invention for use in a rotary valve;

FIG. 16 is an enlarged view in perspective of the locking-recess ring shown in FIG. 15;

FIG. 17 is a view in vertical section of a setment of a rotary valve showing an alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 18 is an enlarged view in perspective of a locking-recess ring made according to the invention for use in the rotary valve of FIG. 17 and having circularly spaced profile sets of recesses; and

FIG. 19 is an enlarged view in perspective of an alternative locking-recess ring showing longitudinally spaced profile sets of recesses.

In describing the preferred embodiment of the invention illustrated in the drawings, specific terminology will be resorted to for the sake of clarity. However, it is not intended to be limited to the specific terms so selected, and it is to be understood that each specific term includes all technical equivalents which operate in a similar manner to accomplish a similar purpose.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 illustrates a typical directional control valve. It has a valve spool 10 which is slidably mounted in a valve body 12. A hand lever 14 is pivotally mounted to a pivot 16 and connected by a pin 18 to the spool 10 for shifting the spool to its various spool positions and thereby selectively interconnecting the ports 20, 22, 24, 26 and 28 to provide the desired flow conditions. The detent positioner for releasably locking the spool in its series of valve positions is contained within the cap 30, which for purposes of this description is a part of the valve body 12.

A shaft 32 extends coaxially form the spool into the cap 30. A locking-recess means, in the form of a sleeve 34, shown also in FIG. 2, is fixed to the shaft 32 for longitudinal movement with the spool 10. The sleeve 34 might, for example, be manufactured of sintered powdered metal. A longitudinal series of recesses 36 is formed along the bottom of the sleeve 34 and an identical longitudinal series of recesses 38 is formed along the top of the sleeve 34 diametrically opposite the bottom series 36. A detent means in the form of a pair of ball detents 40 lockingly cooperates with the series of recesses 36 and 38 and is inwardly radially operative to seat in these recesses. A sleeve 42 is mounted to the cap 30 in a manner to be considered a part thereof and has an annular ball retaining surface 44 surrounding the locking-recess sleeve 34 and seating against the ball detents 40. A ball retaining ring 46, which is longitudinally biased by a spring 48, parallels the ball-retaining surface 44 and has a wedge surface 50 which seats against the ball detents 40 and resiliently urges the balls radially inwardly into the series of recesses 36 and 38.

It should be acknowledged that it is common practice in this art to refer to the recesses or the female part of the detent mechanism as the detents. However, for purposes of this description the more generally applicable meanings are used so the the term "detent" refers to the male member, such as the ball detents 40, and the term "recess " is used for the female member into which the detent seats. Many types of detents may be easily adapted for use in an embodiment of the invention. For example, the detents might be of the ball, roller, pin, probe, etc. types.

Furthermore, the terms "longitudinally," "circularly" and "radially" are usually used in reference to the axis of the locking-recess sleeve or ring.

FIG. 2 shows that the sleeve 34 has an additional, dissimilar, longitudinal series of recesses 52 and, although not shown, a longitudinal series of recesses on the diametrically opposite side of the sleeve 34 identical to the series 52. Thus, the sleeve 34 can be angularly oriented and mounted in a position 90° from that illustrated in FIG. 1. In this case, the optional series of recesses 52 and the opposite identical series of recesses would lockingly cooperate with the ball detents 40. The sleeve 34, as illustrated in FIG. 1, is mounted to the shaft 32 by means of a locking pin 54 inserted in a diametrical hole in the shaft 32 and lying in the aligned diametrical opening 56 in the castled end of the sleeve 34. If, however, the valve of FIG. 1 required the valve positions available from the series of recesses 52, then the sleeve 34 would be mounted with the pin 54 aligned within the opening 58 of the castled end of the sleeve 34. Of course, the shaft 32 could alternatively be provided with a plurality of intersecting diametrical holes for receipt of a locking pin and the sleeve could be provided with one diametrical opening for receipt of the locking pin. This would provide equivalent operation and results.

Therefore, it can be seen that the sleeve illustrated in FIG. 1 and in FIG. 2 offers two optional profiles for releasably locking the spool in either one of two series of valve positions. The series of three recesses 36, together with the opposite identical series of three recesses 38, together form one of two optional profile sets of recesses available on the sleeve illustrated in FIG. 2. The second optional profile set of recesses consists of the longitudinal series of five recesses 52 and the opposite identical series of recesses. With closer circumferential spacing between the recesses, three or more optional profile sets of recesses could be provided on the sleeve. Each profile set would have two diametrically opposite longitudinal series of recesses.

In this embodiment of the invention, as in many others, the sleeve may be provided with one or more asymmetrical series of recesses. Thus, rather than the series of three and the series of five equal-sized, evenly spaced, identically contoured recesses shown in FIG. 2, a longitudinal series of recesses might have individual recesses of different contours, size and spacing. Both ends of such a sleeve, if provided for use in the embodiment of FIG. 1, may be castled so that the sleeve would have two optional longitudinal positions in which it could be mounted on the shaft 32. This would double the number of profile sets available from a sleeve.

Radial balance may be accomplished by using diametrically opposite detents cooperating with two diametrically opposite series of recesses in each profile set of recesses. However, if more than two detents are desired, radial balance can still be accomplished by symmetrically spacing both the detents and the longitudinal series of recesses in each profile set around the axis of the spool. For example, if three ball detents were desired they would be spaced 120° apart. Each profile set of recesses would comprise an equal number, in this case three, identical longitudinal series of recesses spaced at 120° intervals around the exterior of the sleeve. Of course, if radial balance is not necessary, as is very often the case, even a single detent could be utilized or the plurality of detents could by asymmetrically spaced around the sleeve axis.

Although the desired profile set for the detent mechanism illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2 is selected by mounting the sleeve 34 at a particular angular orientation, the structure of FIG. 1 could be codified so that instead the angular orientation of the ball detents 40 could be selected to utilize the desired profile set of recesses corresponding to the valve positions of a particular valve.

It will become apparent, especially in view of the following embodiments of the invention, that the position of the locking-recess means and the detent means are normally interchangeable, and that likewise in each case either can be constructed so as to be optionally positionable in several angular orientations relative to the other so as to permit selection of a desired profile set.

For example, in FIG. 3 another embodiment is illustrated having a sleeve 64 which could be mounted in the shaft 32 of the embodiment of FIG. 1, and also having a ball-retaining ring 66. The ball-retaining ring 66, in addition to having wedge surfaces 68 similar to the wedge surfaces 50 illustrated in FIG. 1, also has barriers 70 provided on opposite sides of the ball detents such as the ball 72. These barriers serve to confine the balls to the series of recesses in the selected profile set of recesses. In the embodiment of FIG. 2, the ends of the recesses are formed into lateral walls such as the lateral wall 39 which confine the balls to the selected profile set. The barriers could also be provided along the ball-retaining surface which is fixed to the valve body as the ball retaining surface 44 illustrated in FIG. 1.

The embodiment of FIG. 4 illustrates a locking-recess sleeve 103 similar to that illustrated in FIG. 1 and a detent means mounted to the valve body and inwardly radially biased toward the sleeve. The detent means illustrated in FIG. 4 comprises the ball detents 101 and 102 which are inwardly radially operable and resiliently biased toward the sleeve 103. Seating against the balls are an annular ball retaining surface 104 fixed to the valve body 105 and the wedge surface 106 of a spring biased ball retaining ring 108 paralleling the annular surface 104.

FIG. 5 illustrates a detent mechanism having a locking-recess sleeve 110 like that illustrated in FIG. 1, and ball detents 111 and 112 which are inwardly biased directly by springs 114 and 116. The ball detents 111 and 112 are retained in ball retaining tubes 118 and 120 which are inserted in bores 122 and 124 in the cap 126 of the valve body.

In all the embodiments so far described, the detents are mounted to the valve body and the locking-recess sleeve is mounted to the spool with the recesses spaced around the exterior of the sleeve. In each case, the structure could easily be modified so that either the detents could be mounted optionally at any one of a plurality of angular orientations relative to the sleeve or the sleeve could be optionally mounted at any one of a plurality of relative angular orientations relative to the detents in order to select a desired profile set. For example, in FIG. 5, the entire cap 126 could be shifted 90° and thereby a different profile set of recesses could be selected for a valve having a different series of valve positions.

In the embodiments of FIGS. 6 through 9, the detent means is mounted to the spool and the locking-recess means is mounted to the valve body. Again, however, each of these embodiments can be arranged so that either the detent means or the locking-recess means could be optionally positioned at any one of a plurality of angular orientations relative to the other.

The embodiment of FIG. 6 illustrates a detent mechanism in which the locking-recess means is the cap 130 itself which has the locking-recesses formed in diametrically opposite pairs around the interior thereof. The detent means includes a pair of symmetrically spaced ball detents 131 and 132 which seat against a first ball retaining ring 133 mounted to the spool inwardly of the locking-recess means. A second spring-biased ball-retaining ring 134 is mounted to the spool parallel to the first ring and has a wedge surface 136 which seats against the balls and resiliently urges the balls outwardly into the selected profile set of recesses. The selection of the desired profile set for the valve positions of a particular valve is accomplished by mounting the cap 130 at a particular angular orientation relative to the ball detents 131 and 132.

In FIG. 7 an embodiment is illustrated in which the ball detents are a pair of balls 210 and 212 mounted in a pair of ball retaining tubes 214 and 216. The tubes 214 and 216 are fitted in opposite ends of a diametrical hole 218 through the spool 220. The ball detents 210 and 212 are radially outwardly spring biased by a spring 222. A locking-recess sleeve 224 is mounted in the positioner cap 226. In the embodiment illustrated, the exterior of the sleeve 224 is cylindrical and mates with an interior cylindrical surface in the positioner cap 226. A pin 228 is provided to prevent circular movement of the sleeve relative to the cap 226. Either the sleeve 224 or the cap 226 is provided with a single bore into which the pin 228 extends. The other, either the sleeve 224 or the cap 226, is provided with a cooperating circular series of similar holes, one of which will ultimately receive the pin 228. Thus, the sleeve 224 may be angularly positioned for selection of the desired profile set of recesses and then mounted in the selected position by means of the pin 228. Obviously many other types of structures could also function as means for selectively mounting the sleeve 224 within the cap 226 at any one of a plurality of angular orientations relative to the detents 210 and 212. For example, a sliding key might be used; the interior surface of the cap 226 and the exterior surface of the sleeve 224 could be regular mating polygons such as hexagons or octagons; tongue and groove structures could be provided; mating serrations may be provided.

As shown more clearly in FIG. 8, the sleeve 224 has several profile sets of recesses, each profile set having two diametrically opposite, longitudinal series of identical recesses. In FIG. 8, the diametrically opposite longitudinal series of recesses 230A and 230B comprise the profile set which is cooperating with the ball detents 210 and 212. The sleeve 224 is shown having four dissimilar profile sets of recesses.

In FIG. 9, another embodiment is shown illustrating a positioner similar to that shown in FIG. 7 and 8 but having the recesses 248, 249 and 250 cut directly in the cap 252. In this embodiment, the detent means 254 is mountable at a plurality of angular orientations relative to the cap 252. The end of the spool 256 has a diametrical bore therethrough and the collar portion 258 of the detent means 254 has a cooperating similar diametrical bore therethrough. One of the members, either the end of the spool 256, or the collar portion 258 of the detent means 254 is provided with several intersecting diametrical bores therethrough so that the detent means 254 may be positioned at a selected angular orientation relative to the cap 252. A pin 260 is then inserted through aligned bores to lock the detent means in the desired angular orientation.

FIGS. 10, 11 and 12 show cooperating detents and recesses and illustrate several alternative recess contours which can be utilized in an embodiment of the invention. All three take double advantage of the detent resiliency. These detent mechanisms not only releasably lock the spool in one or more positions, but they also contribute to spool positioning.

In the embodiment of FIG. 10, the slopes 270 and 272 urge the detent 274 into recesses 276 and 278 respectively thereby urging the spool to its corresponding positions. An operator can position the spool so that the detent is releasably locked in the center recess 280. The operator can also move the detent up the slope 270 or 272 to the corresponding spool positions. When the operator releases the shift lever, the detents will return to the recesses 276 or 278.

The embodiment of FIG. 11 employs the same principles described for the embodiment of FIG. 10 except that two recesses 282 and 284 are provided with the one recess 282 being centered.

The embodiment of FIG. 12 shows a simple self-centering detent mechanism in which the detent 290, and therefore the spool, is urged to a single centered position at the recess 292.

FIG. 13 illustrates yet another embodiment of the invention in which the detent means, though mounted to the spool 310, is radially, inwardly spring biased by means of a spring 312 and a ball retaining ring 314 having a wedge surface 316. A cooperating ball retaining ring 318 is fixed to the end of the spool shaft 310. A locking-recess sleeve 320 having its recesses spaced around the exterior thereof is bolted by means of a screw member 322 and a nut member 324 to the cap 326. A key 328 and its cooperating slot 330 are provided to fix the sleeve in its selected angular position relative to the ball detents 332 and 334. Slots similar to the slot 330 are circularly spaced around the hole 336 so that the sleeve 320 may be fixed in any selected one of a plurality of angular orientations.

In FIG. 14 a somewhat different embodiment in the invention is illustrated. FIG. 14 shows the hand lever 350 of a directional control valve which is mounted by a pivot 352 to the valve body 354. The hand lever 350 is also pivotally mounted to the spool 356 by a pin 358. Extending downwardly from the bottom end of the hand lever 350 is a spring biased detent 360. Immediately beneath the detent 360 is a relatively flat plate 362 which is provided with a series of recesses 364 which cooperate with the detent 360 for releasably locking the spool 356 in its plurality of valve positions. The plate 362 is provided with a plurality of dissimilar series of recesses. The plate 362 rests on an extension 370 of the valve body 354 and is slidable thereon laterally of the series of recesses. The particular series of recesses which is desired for the valve to be used is selected for cooperation with the detent 360 by sliding the plate 362 laterally until the desired recesses are beneath the detent 360 and by then clamping the plate 362 onto the extension 370. The clamping can, for example, be by means of lateral slots through the ends of the plate 362 and screws extending therethrough into threaded holes in the extension 370.

FIGs. 15-19 illustrate the application of the invention to rotary valves.

FIG. 15 shows a typical rotary valve including a valve body 402 having passages 404 and 406 and other passages as desired. A valve member in the form of a rotor 408 is mounted in the body 402 and is rotated by a handle 410. Rotation of the rotor 408 provides the desired flow conditions. The detent mechanism has a longitudinally operative ball detent 412 mounted to the rotor 408 for circular movement therewith. A locking-recess means in the form of a recess ring 414 is mounted to the valve body 402 for receipt of the ball detent 412.

The recess ring 414 is shown in detail in FIG. 16. The recess ring 414 has a plurality of dissimilar profile sets of recesses labeled 414A, 414B and 414C. The profile sets 414A, 414B or 414C may be selected by rotating the ring 414 into an angular orientation so that the detent 412 will cooperate with that profile set corresponding to the rotor positions of the particular rotary valve. The ring is then mounted in the valve body and fixed in the selected angular orientation by a pin, screw, or any of the many other such means which obviously can be used.

In the embodiments of FIGS. 15-19, like the other embodiments, the positions of the recess means and the detent means can be reversed. Also either can be made optionally mountable in any selected one of several positions to provide locking cooperation between the detent means and the selected profile set of the locking-recess means.

The embodiment of FIG. 15 might be further modified so that additional profile sets of recess are made on the surface of the ring longitudinally opposite the illustrated recesses. A still further modified embodiment can be made in which the recess means is only a segment of the ring illustrated in FIG. 16.

FIG. 17 illustrates a rotary valve similar to that of FIG. 15 but which has diametrically recesses detents 420 which are radially operative. A locking-recess means in the form of a recess ring 422 cooperates with the detents 420 and has its recesses spaced around its interior surface.

FIG. 18 shows the ring 422 in detail. It has two profile sets 424A and 424B of recesses, each profile set having two, identical diametrically opposite circular series of recesses. One angular orientation of the ring 422 in the valve body 430 provides cooperation between the detents 420 and the profile set 424A. If the ring 422 is shifted 90°, then cooperation between the detents 422 and the profile set 424B is easily accomplished.

In the embodiment of FIG. 18, the desired profile set of recesses is selected by angular orientation of the ring 422. The ring of FIG. 19 provides yet another degree of freedom and therefore yet another way of selecting the necessary profile set of recesses.

In FIG. 19, the recess ring 450 has longitudinally spaced profile sets of recesses 450A, 450B and 450C. Each profile set has two identical, diametrically opposite, circularly aligned series of recesses. The proper profile set of recesses is selected by longitudinal movement of the recess ring 450 which is mounted in a counter bore similar to that shown in FIG. 17.

It is to be understood that while the detailed drawings and specific examples given describe preferred embodiments of my invention, they are for the purposes of illustration only, that the apparatus of the invention is not limited to the precise details and conditions disclosed, and that various changes may be made therein without departing from the spirit of the invention which is defined by the following claims.