Title:
BAR BARRIER WITH BAR WEIGHT OFFSET SYSTEM
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A motorized bar barrier device, including a shaft (14) supporting the bar, a motor unit (12) for the rotation of the shaft and a unit (13) for offsetting the moment produced on the shaft by the weight of the bar. The offsetting unit (13) comprises a torsion spring (24) wrapped coaxially at the shaft and which has a first end (27) that is pushed by the rotation of the shaft to wind the spring when the shaft (14) is turned in a first direction starting from a neutral position and a second end (28) that is pushed by the rotation of the shaft to wind the spring when the shaft (14) is turned in a second opposite direction starting from the neutral position. This way, the system can provide offsetting of the moment produced by the weight of the bar in both the directions of rotation starting from the neutral position.



Inventors:
Mazzocchi, Mario Luca (Dalmine, IT)
Application Number:
12/449947
Publication Date:
04/22/2010
Filing Date:
03/05/2008
Assignee:
Geniud S.p.A (Grassobbio BG, IT)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E01F13/08; E01F13/04
View Patent Images:
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Other References:
Machine translation Fr 2843410
Primary Examiner:
KELLY, CATHERINE A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
HEDMAN & COSTIGAN P.C. (1185 AVENUE OF THE AMERICAS, NEW YORK, NY, 10036, US)
Claims:
1. Motorized bar barrier device, comprising a shaft (14) supporting the bar, a motor unit (12) for turning the shaft and a unit (13) for offsetting the moment produced on the shaft by the weight of the bar, wherein the offset unit (13) comprises a torsion spring (24) wrapped coaxially at the shaft and which has a first end (27) that is pushed by the rotation of the shaft to wind the spring when the shaft (14) is turned in a first direction starting from a neutral position and a second end (28) that is pushed by the rotation of the shaft to wind the spring when the shaft (14) is turned in a second opposite direction starting from the neutral position, so as to be able to provide at least partial offsetting of the moment produced by the weight of the bar in both directions of rotation starting from the neutral position.

2. Device as defined by claim 1, wherein the shaft (14), by means of the alternate thrust of the two ends (27, 28) of the spring, supports a thrust pin (26) which is parallel to it and at a radial distance such as to be in between the two ends of the spring, protruding radially to push on the pin (26) from opposite directions, single-directional stop means (29, 30) also being present to prevent the movement of each respective end (27, 28) of the spring in the direction opposite to that of winding during the thrust movement of the pin (26) on the other end.

3. Device as defined by claim 1, wherein the torsion spring (24) has been selected to have a moment generated by the spring with pattern substantially similar and directly proportionate to the opposite one generated by the weight of the bar.

4. Device as defined by claim 2, wherein the single-directional stop means consist of the end part of two cracks (29, 30) made in a cover shell of the spring, through which pass the ends (27, 28) of the spring.

5. Device as defined by claim 1, wherein mechanical stop means (31, 32, 33) are envisaged to limit the rotation movement of the shaft between a position with vertical bar and a position with horizontal bar.

6. Device as defined by claim 5, wherein the mechanical stop means are adjustable to have, alternatively, the position with horizontal bar in clockwise direction or in anticlockwise direction with respect to the vertical position.

7. Device as defined by claim 6, wherein the stop means comprise a first vertical position stop (31) and at least one second horizontal position stop (32) with which interferes an arm (25) protruding radially from the shaft (14).

8. Device as defined by claim 7, wherein the vertical position stop (31) is made in the shape of a reversible plate to be mountable to prevent a further movement, alternatively anticlockwise or clockwise, of the arm (25) protruding from the shaft (14).

9. Device as claimed by claim 7, wherein the shaft (14), by means of the alternate thrust of the two ends (27, 28) of the spring, supports a thrust pin (26) which is parallel to it and at a radial distance such as to be in between the two ends of the spring, protruding radially to push on the pin (26) from opposite directions, single-directional stop means (29, 30) also being present to prevent the movement of each respective end (27, 28) of the spring in the direction opposite to that of winding during the thrust movement of the pin (26) on the other end, and wherein the arm (25) also acts as a support to the thrust pin (26) on the shaft (14).

10. Device as defined by claim 1, wherein the motor unit is kinematically connected to the shaft (14) in a disengageable way by means of a release system (22, 23).

11. Device as defined by claim 10, wherein the release system comprises in combination a gear (19) freely turnable on the shaft (14) and to which is connected a pinion (20) of a gearmotor (21) of the motor unit (12), releasable engagement means (35, 39) between the shaft and gear and a lever (23) for manually operating such releasable means between an engaging position and a disengaging position.

12. Device as defined by claim 11, wherein the lever (23) is positioned on a plate (15) supporting the bar on the shaft (14).

13. Device as defined by claim 11, wherein the releasable means comprise an elongated element (35) which transversally crosses the shaft (14) at an elongated slot (36) for axial sliding on the shaft between an engaging position in a radial seat (38) in a bush (39) integral with the gear (19) and a disengaging position from such seat (38), the lever being kinematically connected to the elongated element (35) to cause its movement, against the action of a spring (37), from the engaging position to the disengaging position.

14. Device as defined by claim 13, wherein the lever (23) is kinematically connected to the elongated element (35) by means of an operating pin (40) that slides axially in the shaft (14).

15. Device as defined by claim 13, wherein the bush (39) comprises a plurality of angularly distanced radial seats (38).

16. Device as defined by claim 1, wherein are comprised support means (41, 42) for wall fastening.

Description:

The present invention refers to a motorized bar barrier device which permits fitting the bar for right or left opening without having to adjust the balancing system.

In the case of bar barrier devices, the need is known to at least partially offset the moment produced by the weight of the bar. Such moment varies greatly during the movement of the bar from the vertical position to the horizontal position and vice versa.

To perform this offsetting various mechanisms have been suggested. For example, helical balancing wheels have been suggested, connected between the frame of the device and a suitable arm protruding from the bar rotation shaft. The elongation of the spring during the rotation of the bar towards the horizontal position tends to offset the moment of the weight of the bar. When a right opening has to be made rather than a left one, either the fastening point of the spring must be moved symmetrically or the entire device must be moved by 180° around its vertical axis, so the exit shaft always completes the same rotation. The first solution calls for manual intervention which is not always easy due among other things to the high spring traction. The second solution causes a dissymmetry in the appearance of the right barrier with respect to the left barrier (turned in the opposite direction), visible above all when two contrasting coupled barriers are used at the sides of a same passageway. Furthermore, the manual release mechanism of the bar could find itself turned towards the wall that delimits access, with the consequent difficulty or impossibility of operation in case of a fault in the power drive or of a power outage.

To try and obtain a better balance while taking up less room, the suggestion has also been made of using torsion springs arranged on the rotation axis of the bar. With this solution, the change of direction of action of the spring becomes however rather complicated due to having to remove and invert the spring on the shaft (which however needs to be removed). For this reason, in the case of a torsion spring, preference is given to turning the entire barrier device by 180°, with the dissymmetry problems mentioned above.

The general object of the present invention is to overcome the drawbacks mentioned above, providing a barrier device with balancing system that can offset right or left opening bars indifferently.

In view of this object, according to the invention, a motorized bar barrier device has been made, comprising a shaft supporting the bar, a motor unit for the rotation of the shaft and a unit for offsetting the moment produced on the shaft by the weight of the bar, wherein the offsetting unit comprises a torsion spring wrapped coaxially at the shaft and having a first end that is pushed by the rotation of the shaft to wind the spring when the shaft is turned in a first direction starting from a neutral position and a second end that is pushed by the rotation of the shaft to wind the spring when the shaft is turned in a second opposite direction starting from the neutral position, so as to provide at least partial offsetting of the moment produced by the weight of the bar in both the directions of rotation starting from the neutral position.

To make clearer the explanation of the innovative principles of the present invention and its advantages with respect to the state of the art, with the aid of the attached drawings, a description will be given below of a possible exemplary embodiment applying such principles. In the drawings:

FIG. 1 represents a partial schematic and perspective view of a barrier device according to the invention;

FIG. 2 represents a schematic plan view of the device of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 represents a partial schematic and perspective view of a rear part of the device of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 represents a partial schematic and perspective view of a release element of the device of FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 represents a rear perspective view of the barrier device of FIG. 1 equipped with wall fastening.

With reference to the figures, FIG. 1 shows (with broken line and removed closing cover) a bar barrier device, indicated generically by 10.

The device 10 comprises a body 11 containing a motor unit 12 and a balancing unit 13, connected to a rotation shaft 14 onto which is fastened a plate 15 for fitting a bar 16.

As can be better seen in FIG. 2, where some covers have been partially removed, the rotation shaft 14 (supported by a pair of bearings 17 and 18) supports a gear 19 on which is engaged a pinion 20 of a gearmotor 21. Advantageously, as will be clear later on, the gear 19 is engaged on the shaft in a releasable way by means of a release system 22 driven by an operating lever 23 (if necessary protected by a key cover, not shown).

The shaft 14 crosses a torsion spring 24 of the balancing unit 13 and protrudes at the rear to integrally support an arm 25 which in turn supports a thrust pin 26 positioned parallel and radial at a distance from the shaft 14.

The spring has a first end 27 that is pushed to wind the spring when the shaft is turned in a first direction starting from a neutral position (corresponding to the bar in vertical position) and a second end 28 that is pushed to wind the spring when the shaft is turned in a second opposite direction starting from the neutral position.

In particular, as can again be clearly seen in FIG. 2, in the vertical bar position, the torsion spring 24 has the two ends 27 and 28 that extend in a radial direction to rest symmetrically on the two sides of the pin 26 in the direction of traction of the spring. The torsion spring will be advantageously pre-loaded to favor the stable maintaining of the vertical position of the bar with a desired force.

Single-directional stop means of the ends of the spring are also present to stop the movement of each end of the spring in the direction opposite to the thrust direction of the pin to wind the spring starting from the neutral position. These means are advantageously made with the bottom or end part of the cracks 29, 30, made in a covering shell of the spring, through which pass the ends of the spring.

The bar, to complete its closing movement, must turn by 90° (in an anticlockwise direction in the case shown in the illustrations), advantageously between two mechanical stops. One of the two mechanical stops is mobile because when a contrary rotation of the rod is to be made the lever must start from the same vertical position but turn in the opposite direction, where it will find another fixed stop.

As is better shown in FIG. 3, during movement, the rear lever 25 turns by 90° from the vertical position (shown by the unbroken line) to horizontal position (shown by the broken line). Mechanical stop means are envisaged to restrict the shaft rotation movement between the vertical position and the horizontal position of the bar. Such means are also adjustable to selectively have the horizontal position either in a clockwise direction or an anticlockwise direction with respect to the vertical position of the bar.

The movement between the two positions is advantageously delimited by a vertical position stop 31 and a horizontal position stop 32 respectively. The vertical stop is made in the shape of an invertible plate 31 so it can be mounted to prevent a further anticlockwise movement (as shown in the FIG. 2) or clockwise movement (by upturning the plate to the right of the lever, as shown by the broken line in FIG. 2) and thereby realize the above-mentioned mobile stop. In this latter case, the horizontal position of the lever will be overturned to the left and the horizontal stop will be stop 33 (mirrored with respect to stop 32).

When the device is fitted as in the illustrations, when the lever passes from vertical position to horizontal position (with anticlockwise movement in FIG. 1) the pin 26 moves the end 27 of the spring, while the end 28 remains blocked by the stop seat 30. When the barrier is required to operate in the opposite direction, simply switch over the vertical stop 31, so that when the gearmotor is suitably operated, the bar moves in a clockwise direction from vertical position to horizontal position while the pin 26 moves the end 28 of the spring and the end 27 remains blocked by the stop seat 29. In both cases, in a completely symmetrical way, the torsion spring (suitably sized according to the weight of the bar) produces the required balancing effect.

In the case of a bar that is off centre with respect to the rotation axis (as shown in the illustrations) the possibility also exists of inverting the plate 15 and the position of the bar on this plate, so as to obtain a movement that is completely symmetrical in the case of both right opening and left opening.

FIG. 4 shows in greater detail the bar release system, to be operated when the bar has to be operated manually while always maintaining the spring balancing effect. As has been mentioned before, the purpose of the release is to free the bar from the irreversible gearmotor.

For this purpose, the release system comprises releasable means of engagement between gear 19 and shaft 14. Advantageously, the engagement means comprise an elongated element 35 that crosses the shaft 14 transversally at a slot or milling 36 on the shaft to be able to slide axially to the shaft against the action of a thrust spring 37. The spring 37 pushes the element 35 inside a radial seat 38 of a bush 39 integral with the gear 19, and which is freely turning on the shaft 14.

An operating pin 40 (shown by a broken line in FIG. 2) can slide axially in the shaft 14 to push on the element 35 by operating the lever 23 and to disengage it from the bush 39.

Advantageously, the bush 39 has several radial seats distanced at angles (e.g., every 30°), so the rod can be re-blocked in intermediate positions.

At this point, it is clear how the preset objects have been achieved, providing a device that permits balancing the bar in both directions without the need to intervene on the balancing device. The balancing of the rod is done by rotating an appendix of the torsion spring which winds up during bar movement: to balance the rod in the contrary application, simply rotate the rod by 180° (if required by the support), turn the mobile stop and in this way the exit shaft, by turning in the opposite direction, will move the other appendix (while the first will remain still) permitting the balancing of the bar.

A further advantage of the described device is to have the release on the same side when, at an entrance, there are two contrasting barriers.

It should be noted that, unlike normal barriers, rod balancing is done advantageously with a moment that is directly proportionate to the torsion of the spring. This way, the spring can be suitably selected according to the weight of the bar, so that the moment generated by the spring is very similar to the opposite moment generated by the weight of the bar and during the entire bar movement the motor can operate at minimum load and therefore runs almost at top idling speed.

The rods can be advantageously sized to have the same static moment with respect to the centre of rotation in their maximum length and when the rods are to be shortened (within certain limits), to ensure best barrier operation, simply add a suitable weight to offset the lost static moment. This way, it will not be necessary to have several springs for different rod lengths.

The device according to the invention also has the novel characteristic of being able to be fixed directly to the wall, without the traditional pedestals of prior art, thanks to the innovative structure of the offsetting system which allows the device to have a compact shape in a vertical direction and limited depth, release on front and reversibility of the direction of bar opening/closing without having to turn the actuator body. FIG. 5 shows the device of FIG. 1 complete with a support 41, advantageously fixable to the base of the body 11, and having at the rear fixing means 42 (e.g., holes with screw anchors) for wall mounting.

Naturally, the above description of an embodiment applying the innovative principles of the present invention is provided by way of example of such innovative principles and should not therefore be taken as a limitation of the scope of the patent right claimed herein. For example, the position of the bar with respect to the rotation axis and its mounting system can vary according to specific requirements, including of an aesthetic nature. The arm that interferes with the mechanical stops of the two extreme bar rotation positions can if necessary be separated from the supporting arm of the thrust pin 26. The bar release means can also be missing or be different from those advantageously described.