Title:
Overhead beam assembly
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An overhead beam assembly of a concrete forming system. A wall-mounted self-climbing hoist is releasably secured to a wall section. An overhead beam assembly of a plurality of beam sections is supported on the hoist by columns. The overhead beam assembly includes a plurality of hubs that interconnect the beam sections to present a planar top surface and an assembly that is only as thick as a singly beam section. The novel overhead beam assembly has a substantially flat top surface and a single beam thickness.



Inventors:
Pauley, Randy (West Des Moines, IA, US)
Waldschmitt, Thomas (Ankeny, IA, US)
Jennings, Paul (Winthrop, WA, US)
Application Number:
11/540448
Publication Date:
05/03/2007
Filing Date:
09/29/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
264/33, 425/63
International Classes:
E04G11/20
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
SAFAVI, MICHAEL
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DAVIS, BROWN, KOEHN, SHORS & ROBERTS, P.C. (THE DAVIS BROWN TOWER 215 10TH STREET SUITE 1300, DES MOINES, IA, 50309, US)
Claims:
We claim:

1. An overhead beam assembly of a concrete forming system, comprising: (a) a wall mounting releasably secured to a wall section; (b) a plurality of beam sections; (c) a hub that is releasably attached to one or more of the beam sections to form an assembly having a substantially flat top surface and a single beam thickness; and (d) columns for supporting on the assembly on the wall mounting.

2. The overhead beam assembly as defined in claim 1, further comprising forms for forming a wall section suspended from the assembly for movement between a working, set position and a stripped position.

Description:

This application claims priority to U.S. patent application Ser. No. 60/722,585, filed Sep. 30, 2005.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

This invention relates to apparatus for forming concrete walls and other structures and, more specifically, an overhead beam assembly used in the construction of concrete wall structures for multi-story buildings.

2. Background of the Prior Art

In the construction of a multi-story building, such as an office building, apartment building and the like, these buildings may have thirty or more floors. Where concrete is used in the construction of the outside or inside walls, it is necessary to provide cranes in the setting up and then stripping of the forms from a set wall panel for reuse in continuing the completion of the wall. Unless a crane is available as required in the setting up and stripping of the forms the wall not only becomes costly, but additional cost increases are incurred by lost time on other operations that must be performed on a meshing or synchronized time schedule with the wall forming operation. It is apparent also that appreciable down time of the crane may take place, when it could be more efficiently utilized on other jobs at the building site. Where open crane time for timely handling of the form units is not available, construction usually proceeds behind schedule with resultant monetary losses. In some instances, the size of the building being constructed relative to the building site may preclude the use of a crane thru various construction phases.

A system for constructing concrete walls about two stories high is shown in U.S. Pat. No. 2,516,318; and for multi-story buildings, in U.S. Pat. Nos. 4,043,087; and 2,118,374. Self-lifting form systems now in use are generally cumbersome and, although inconvenient to manipulate during both a wall climbing operation and a form handling operation, have been found to be generally satisfactory. U.S. Pat. No. 3,628,223 discloses a climbing form hoist that includes a telescopic mast comprised of a pair of vertical lower mast sections for telescopically receiving associated upper mast sections that are extended and retracted by a common reversible electric motor. The upper mast sections carry an outer form unit. With the mast retracted and attached at its lower end to a completed lower wall section, the inner and outer form units are braced or tied together in any well-known manner after which a new lift or wall section is poured. When the new pour has set, the outer form unit, after being stripped from the wall structure, is elevated by the extension of the upper mast sections to a new pour position wherein its lower end is attachable to the previously poured wall section. The lower mast sections are then released from the wall, the upper mast section is retracted and the lower mast section again connected to the wall. The inner form unit is then repositioned for another lift to be poured.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,290,576 discloses a climbing scaffolding which utilizes a guiding rail only as a vertical guide, but not to support the load resulting from the weight of the scaffolding in the vertical direction. The ′576 patent requires its operators to manually fix the scaffolding in its lifted position by inserting pins into cutouts or by placing wedges underneath to support the load. U.S. Pat. No. 5,000,287 discloses a displaceable platform which is movable sectionwise on a wall, comprising support shoes, carrying rails, and a bracketing arrangement to support the platform.

It has now become known to use the self-climbing hoists to attach not only forms on the side of the wall to which the hoist is attached, but also forms for forming the opposite side of the wall. One such system is sold by PERI GmbH. The PERI system uses an overhead beam assembly of beams running parallel and perpendicular to the wall being formed and which is supported on the self-climbing hoist and extends above the wall section being formed to the opposite side. Forms for both surfaces of the wall section being formed are supported on the overhead beam assembly. Where the beams cross each other in the PERI system, one set is positioned above the other with the result that the overhead beam assembly is in two planes, separated from each other by the thickness of the beams. Since workers using the concrete forms and form systems must move above the overhead beam assembly during use of the form systems, the PERI system requires that they step over the upper set of beams and further that the top of the overhead beam assembly is a significant height above the balance of the forming systems. The present invention addresses these problems by providing an overhead beam assembly that is in a single plane with a flat top surface that is significantly closer to the balance of the forming systems.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention consists of an overhead beam assembly for a concrete forming system that does not require its components to cross over one another and so is oriented in a single plane and has a flat top surface. The overhead beam assembly includes a plurality of beam members that are interconnected by one or more hubs. The hubs have at least two mounting surfaces to which end surfaces of the beams are releasably secured in a moment connection by nut and bolt assemblies or the like. In a preferred embodiment, the hubs have four vertical mounting surfaces oriented in two opposing pairs at right angles to each other. By using a plurality of beams and hubs, an overhead beam assembly of any desired configuration can be formed.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a an upper perspective view of a concrete structure being formed by concrete forming systems, including a plurality of self-climbing hoists and an overhead beam assembly of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is an upper perspective view of a hub of the present invention.

FIGS. 3a-3c are an upper perspective of an overhead beam assembly, an enlarged detail view of a clamp assembly for holding a separate beam member on the overhead beam assembly, and an enlarged detail view of a hub attached to four beam members, respectively.

FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of a concrete form assembly showing an overhead beam assembly of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring to FIG. 1 of the drawings, there is illustrated generally at 10 a concrete forming assembly including a plurality of self-climbing hoists or lifters 12, a mast 14 on which the hoists 12 are supported, and an overhead beam assembly 16 that is supported on and above platforms 18 of the hoists 12 on columns 20. The overhead beam assembly 16 is comprised of a plurality of beam sections 22 that are interconnected by a plurality of hubs 24. Note that the overhead beam assembly 16 has no beam sections or other structure that cross over each other, but instead is constructed entirely in a single plane and has a substantially flat top surface. Portions of the concrete structure have been formed, including floor sections 26 and wall sections 28.

A hub 24 of the present invention includes a top plate 30 and an opposite, spaced-apart, parallel bottom plate 32. The plates 30 and 32 are each octagonal in the preferred embodiment. Four beam mounting plates 34-40 are arranged every 90° about the hub 24 and are secured to the plates 30 and 32. The top and bottom plates 30 and 32 and the mounting plates 34-40 are each perforated with a plurality of openings 42 through which nut and bolt assemblies can be used as described below. In the preferred embodiment, the hub 24 also includes bracing plates 44 and 46 which interconnect the plates 30-32 to strengthen the hub 24.

In FIG. 3a, a plurality of beam sections 22 and hubs 24 have been assembled to form an overhead beam assembly 16. The detailed view of FIG. 3c shows how the end plates 48 of the beam sections 22 and attached to the mounting plates 34-40 of the hub 24. At times, it may be desirable to have a separate beam section 50 cross over part of the overhead beam assembly 16, as illustrated in FIG. 3b. A clamp assembly 52 is used to secure the beam section 50 to the overhead beam assembly 16.

In FIG. 4, forms 54 for forming the surface of the concrete wall section 28 adjacent a hoist 12 may preferably be supported on the overhead beam assembly 16 for lateral movement toward and away from the wall section 28 by a trolley 56 (FIG. 4). Preferably, the beam sections 22 that form the overhead beam assembly 16 have a wide bottom flange on which the trolley 56 is supported for rolling movement longitudinally of the beam section 22. In this way, workers can easily move the form 54 into position for forming the concrete wall section and, after the wall section has set, easily strip the form and retract it away from the formed wall section. FIG. 4 illustrates the flat upper surface of the overhead beam assembly 16, showing a worker walking across its top surface unimpeded by any obstructing beams positioned above one another. Note also that the distance from the top surface of the overhead beam assembly 16 to the other structures of the concrete forming system 10 are reduced when the overhead beam assembly is in a single plane.

In the preferred embodiment, the hub 24 is made with a major axis that is longer than a minor axis to increase the flexibility of the hub 24 in modular forming systems. Specifically, the major axis is 24 inches and the minor axis is 18 inches.

The foregoing description and drawings comprise illustrative embodiments of the present inventions. The foregoing embodiments described herein may vary based on the ability, experience, and preference of those skilled in the art. The foregoing description and drawings merely explain and illustrate the invention, and the invention is not limited thereto, except insofar as the claims are so limited. Those skilled in the art who have the disclosure before them will be able to make modifications and variations therein without departing from the scope of the invention.