United States Patent 3638923

A cart having two coaxial wheels and two columns mounted on a frame supports a hopper consisting of two trough-shaped receptacles connected by releasable hinges, a latch, and a gasket. One of the troughs is rotatably mounted on the frame by trunnions and may be turned about the trunnion axis by bail handles provided on each trough or by a crank on the frame connected to one trunnion by a chain-and-sprocket drive. A removable partition in the container facilitates manual turning of the container by dividing the load.

Application Number:
Publication Date:
Filing Date:
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
366/60, 366/63, 366/220
International Classes:
B01F13/10; B28C5/44; B62B1/12; E01C19/00; (IPC1-7): B28C5/18
Field of Search:
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US Patent References:
3473789MIXING DEVICE1969-10-21Dietrich
2961225Combination concrete mixer and portable dispenser1960-11-22Graybill
2478408Combined portable mixer and barrow1949-08-09Lightburn
1920025Tippable and portable mixing apparatus1933-07-25Thordsen

Primary Examiner:
Jenkins, Robert W.
What is claimed is

1. A multipurpose cart comprising, in combination:

2. A cart as set forth in claim 1, wherein said frame carries another wheel mounted thereon for engagement with said surface simultaneously with said first-mentioned wheel and said two support members.

3. A cart as set forth in claim 2, wherein said frame includes two side assemblies and a handle assembly, each side assembly carrying one of said wheels and including one of said support members, and securing means for securing said handle assembly to each of said side assemblies and for thereby connecting the side assemblies.

4. A cart as set forth in claims 3, wherein said support members are tubular, and respective portions of said handle assembly are received in said tubular members in telescoping engagement.

5. A cart as set forth in claim 2, wherein said sealing means include hinge means connecting said trough member and said cover member for pivotal movement between an open and a sealed condition of said cavity, and latch means engageable for connecting said trough member and said cover member and for thereby preventing said pivoting movement when said cavity is in the sealed condition.

6. A cart as set forth in claim 2, further comprising means for varying the axial spacing of said wheels, the wheels being arranged for rotation about a common axis.

7. A cart as set forth in claim 2, wherein said operating means include a handle member on at least one member of the pair constituted by said trough member and said cover member.

8. A cart as set forth in claim 2, wherein the members of said pair are of substantially identical size and shape.

9. A cart as set forth in claim 1, further including partition means for dividing said cavity into two compartments, said partition means including a plate member and positioning means releasably positioning said plate member in said cavity when said trough member and said cover member are sealingly connected.

10. A cart as set forth in claim 9, wherein said positioning means position said plate member in a plane through the axis of rotation of said trough member, and breaker means on said positioning means in each compartment for breaking material contained therein.

This invention relates to carts, and particularly to simple mixers for concrete or other materials which may be moved on wheels by an operator.

Known small mixers for concrete are mounted on wheels and equipped with handles which permit the mixers to be rolled on a suitable surface to a place of operation. Such mixers are convenient for preparing amounts of concrete mix too small for industrial use, but suitable for occasional use by homeowners or farmers. When concrete mix is not needed, these mixers are useless for their operators.

The primary object of this invention is the provision of a multipurpose cart suitable for mixing materials such as concrete, but also capable of functioning as a wheelbarrow, a spreader for liquid fertilizer, and for other purposes that will readily suggest themselves as the need may arise.

Basically, the cart of the invention has a frame equipped with at least three-point support by suitable members mounted on the frame in a position in which they are adapted simultaneously to engage a horizontal surface. At least one of the support members is a wheel.

The frame carries a bearing arrangement on which a trough member is mounted for rotation about an axis which normally extends horizontally. Operating means are provided for turning the trough member about the bearing axis, and a substantially trough-shaped cover may be sealingly connected to the trough member in such a manner that they jointly enclose a cavity. Handles on the frame permit the cart to be rolled on an approximately horizontal surface by means of its wheel or wheels.

Other features and many of the attendant advantages of this invention will readily become apparent from the following detailed description of preferred embodiments when considered in connection with the appended drawing in which:

FIG. 1 shows the frame of a cart of the invention without the mixing container in a perspective view;

FIG. 2 shows the frame of FIG. 1 assembled with the open container in a view corresponding to that of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 illustrates the fully assembled cart with its container sealed in a view analogous to those of FIGS. 1 and 2;

FIG. 4 shows a divider insert for the container of the cart in a perspective view; and

FIG. 5 illustrates an open container similar to that shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 having the divider of FIG. 4 installed therein.

Referring now to the drawing in detail, and initially to FIG. 1, the frame common to the several illustrated carts of the invention consists essentially of three welded assemblies of steel tubing. A handle assembly 1 is approximately H-shaped and upright in the normal operating position of the cart except for the upper ends of the two parallel side members which are bent into a common horizontal plane and carry plastic handles 1'.

The lower ends of the parallel handle assembly members are telescopically received in respective upright supporting columns 2 of the two identical side assemblies of the frame and secured in a desired vertical position by setscrews 2'. The longer leg of an approximately L-shaped member 3 is fixedly fastened to each column 2 and slopes from the column obliquely upward and forward in the normal direction of cart movement. The shorter leg of the member 3 extends vertically downward and its free end is attached to a fork 4' in which a wheel 4 is mounted releasably and coaxially with the wheel of the other side assembly.

Near their highest points, the two members 3 carry respective bearings 5 whose shells are split and hingedly connected. In FIG. 1, the bearings 5 are open and empty. The left side member 3 also carries a bearing block 6 the purpose of which will presently become apparent. The crossbar of the handle assembly 1 carries a rod 7 slidable on the crossbar in the direction of cart movement in a sleeve 7' welded to the crossbar. The rear end of the rod 7 is perpendicularly bent to form a grip which is fastened to the handle assembly 1 by a chain 7".

When assembled, as shown in FIG. 2, the cart includes a split mixing hopper whose practically identical halves 8, 9 are troughs releasably connected by hinges 10 in the open and closed condition of the hopper and further by a latch 11 on the trough 8 cooperating with a detent 11' on the trough 9 in the closed position of the hopper seen in FIG. 3. Each trough 8, 9 consists of a plastic shell 13 and a rigid, rectangular steel frame 14 about the open rim of the shell. A bail handle 12 is fixedly fastened to the frame 14 of each trough 8, 9, the handles 12 projecting in opposite horizontal directions from the two frames 14 on the closed hopper.

A shaft 15 is transversely fastened in opposite ends of the troughs 8, 9, the shaft in the trough 9 not being visible in the drawing. Each shaft 15 carries a blade 16 and two perpendicular rods 17 for breaking up lumps in the material being mixed. A resilient gasket 18 on the trough 8 seals the hopper when the trough 8 is swung down as a cover on the trough 9.

Trunnions 19, 20 project from the frame 14 of the trough 9 and are journaled in the two bearings 5, thereby permitting the hopper to be turned about the common axis of the bearings 5 by means of the handles 12 for mixing its contents. If the load is too heavy to permit manual rotation of the hopper 8, 9 by means of the handles 12, a sprocket 21 may be mounted on the trunnion 20, a crank 23 carrying a small sprocket 24 on the bearing block 6, and a link chain 25 trained over the sprockets 21, 24, as is shown in FIG. 3.

During loading prior to mixing, or if it is intended to use the cart in the manner of a wheelbarrow for transporting bulk material, the rod 7 is inserted into the tubular member 22 of the handle 12 on the trough 8 which is rearwardly open in the trough position seen in FIGS. 2 and 3, thereby preventing rotation of the hopper about the trunnion axis. The trough 8 serves as a cover during operation of the cart as a wheelbarrow or may be removed after disengagement of the hinges 10.

When the cart is to be stored for an extended period, its bulk may be reduced greatly by removing the hopper 8, 9 from the frame, releasing the wheels 4 from the forks 4' by loosening wingnuts 4" on the wheel shafts, and withdrawing the handle assembly from the columns 2. The three frame assemblies and the wheels then can be fitted in the closed hopper. When the cart is to be used as a stationary mixer, it may also be convenient to remove the wheels 4 and to support the hopper on the forks 4' and the columns 2. When the cart is moved, the columns 2 are lifted from the ground by means of the handles 1' and the wheels 4 roll on the ground.

In the open hopper position shown in FIG. 2, the interior of the trough 8 may be cleaned by a stream of water from a hose, and the water collecting in the trough 9 and water used for cleaning the latter trough may be released by removing a threaded plug 30 from the trough 9. If the plug is replaced by a distributor or nozzle, not shown, the cart may also be used as a spreader for liquid fertilizer, herbicides, and like liquids.

Manual rotation of the hopper on its trunnions is facilitated by a partition of the type shown in FIG. 4. The partition is a plate 26 having the approximate shape of a regular hexagon and corresponding to the upright cross section of the closed hopper through the trunnion axis. Four approximately U-shaped positioning bars 27 project in pairs from opposite faces of the plate 26. The bars 27 of each pair are connected by a straight flat bar 28 which is useful in breaking up lumps in the mixed material in a manner similar to the elements mounted on the shaft 15 in FIG. 2.

FIG. 5 shows two hingedly connected troughs 8, 9 substantially identical with the hopper halves seen in FIG. 2, and the partition assembly of FIG. 4 mounted in the trough 9. The plate 26 is held in an upright plane through the axis of the trunnions 19, 20 by the positioning bars 27 which engage the four corners of the frame 14. When the hopper is closed, the bars 27 similarly engage the frame 14 of the trough 8, and the plate 26 divides the cavity defined by the troughs into two equal compartments.

During normal mixing, the cavity is filled with material to less than one-half of its capacity. In the absence of the partition plate 26, the entire material being mixed is located below the trunnion axis at all times. With the partition plate 26, approximately one-half of the load can be held above the trunnion axis during about one-half of each hopper revolution, thereby facilitating the turning of the hopper.

The troughs 8, 9 shown in FIG. 5 are equipped with modified bail handles 29 connecting the longer sides of each frame 14 near the short sides and enveloping and protecting the shells 13.

The hopper 8, 9 is supported on the ground in four points by the two columns 2 and the two wheels 4. However, three-point support may be sufficient, and a single wheel may be mounted on a shaft (not shown) connecting the forks 4' in a manner conventional in wheelbarrows if the cart does not carry very heavy loads. The wheelbase of the cart may also be reduced by interchanging the side assemblies of the frame because the wheel 4 in each side assembly, as shown in FIGS. 1 to 3, is axially offset from the common plane of the side member 3 and the column 2 in a direction away from the other wheel.

Applications permitting a narrower wheelbase or a single wheel include the mixing of materials other than concrete, such as animal feed, or seed grain and fungicide. A single cart of this invention is versatile enough to be useful in these and other applications for which some of the illustrated elements may be removed from the frame. The troughs 8, 9, for example, when not needed on the cart, have obvious other uses singly or connected by the hinges 10, and all other elements of the cart may be stored in a very small space. Minor modifications may further expand the field of application for the cart.

It should be understood, therefore, that the foregoing disclosure relates only to preferred embodiments of the invention, and that it is intended to cover all changes and modifications in the examples of the invention chosen for the purpose of the disclosure which do not constitute departures from the spirit and scope of the invention as set forth in the appended claims.