Title:
CARRIAGE ASSEMBLY FOR BULKHEADS
United States Patent 3808982


Abstract:
An improved bulkhead carriage for supporting and moving lading-engaging bulkhead panels along overhead tracks is disclosed and includes a force multiplier by which an operator who is pulling a chain fall applies an increased force to gear-drive means mounted to said carriage and which cooperate with said tracks. The force multiplier permits easy and accurate movement of the more recently developed heavier and sophisticated bulkhead assemblies. Horizontally disposed alignment rollers are mounted on each side of the carriage for engagement with side walls of the track on which the carriage moves, to permit easy movement of the bulkhead in the event the carriage drifts laterally with respect to the track.



Inventors:
Bertram, Leroy W. (Wheaton, IL)
Loomis, Russell M. (Palos Heights, IL)
Gaikowski, Michael D. (Chicago, IL)
Application Number:
05/336773
Publication Date:
05/07/1974
Filing Date:
02/28/1973
Assignee:
UNARCO IND INC,US
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
410/139
International Classes:
B61D45/00; (IPC1-7): B61D17/00
Field of Search:
105/376,369S,369B,378
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:



Primary Examiner:
Wood Jr., Henson M.
Assistant Examiner:
Church, Gene A.
Claims:
1. In a carriage from which a heavy bulkhead is suspended within a freight-carrying vehicle having elongated support tracks with apertured portions adjacent the opposed sidewalls of the vehicle along which the carriage moves and wherein movement is selectively controlled through a chain fall, the improvement comprising, in combination: a rigid carriage framework of generally rectangular form in plan providing a pair of spaced, laterally extending beams, drive shaft means carried by the framework parallel to the pair of beams and much closer to one than the other of said beams, the ends of the drive shaft extending outwardly of the ends of the rectangular frame, sprocket and roller means slideably mounted on the ends of the drive shaft for cooperation with separate longitudinal portions of each track and to accommodate for lateral variations in spacing between the apertured portions of the two track means or between the sprocket and roller means and the carriage framework, roller means operatively associated with the carriage framework adjacent the ends of the other beam of the framework and fixed in spacing to cooperate with portions of the track means other than the apertured portions, and force-multiplying means between the chain fall and the carriage including a support bridge between the two beams of the carriage, a sheave and drive sprocket combination rotatably mounted on the support bridge, and a continuous drive between the sprocket and the drive shaft

2. An improved carriage as in claim 1 wherein said force-multiplying means is a gear reduction system that includes sheave means arranged to cooperate with said chain fall, and a first sprocket means operatively associated with said sheave means for rotation therewith, said first sprocket means having a working diameter less than that of said sheave.

3. An improved carriage as in claim 2 wherein there is further provided a second driven sprocket means which drivingly cooperates with said sprocket and roller means and has a working diameter greater than said first sprocket means, and endless sprocket chain means which are trained about said first sprocket means and said second sprocket means for transferring forces from said first sprocket means to said second sprocket means,

4. An improved carriage as in claim 3 wherein said sheave means and said first sprocket means are mounted to shaft means substantially centered between said sprocket and roller means and said roller means which

5. An improved carriage as in claim 4 wherein panel hanging means, adapted to carry a lading-engaging panel, are positioned in line with said shaft and substantially centered between said sprocket and roller means and said

6. In a carriage from which a heavy bulkhead is suspended within a freight-carrying vehicle having elongated support tracks with apertured portions adjacent the opposed sidewalls of the vehicle along which the carriage moves and wherein movement is selectively controlled through a chain fall, the improvement comprising, in combination: a rigid carriage framework of generally rectangular form in plan providing a pair of spaced laterally extending beams, drive shaft means carried by the framework parallel to the pair of beams and much closer to one than the other of said beams, the ends of the drive shaft extending outwardly of the ends of the rectangular frame, sprocket and roller means slideably mounted on the ends of the drive shaft for cooperationg with separate longitudinal portions of each track and to accommodate for lateral variations in spacing between the apertured portions of the two track means or between the sprocket and roller means and the carriage framework, roller means operatively associated with the carriage framework adjacent the ends of the other beam of the framework and fixed in spacing to cooperate with portions of the track means other than the apertured portions, abutment means extending longitudinally of and parallel to said track means and positioned outwardly of said track means, and abutment roller means rotatable about axes transverse to said track means and carried by said framework to extend outwardly of the maximum spacing of the other two roller means to prevent jamming of the carriage framework during

7. An improved carriage as in claim 6 wherein each of said abutment roller means is carried by said framework substantially centrally between said

8. An improved carriage as in claim 7 wherein panel hanging means for carrying a lading-engaging panel are mounted on said carriage

9. An improved carriage as in claim 6 wherein hold-down means are carried on said framework and aligned with said sprocket means and cooperatively associated with said track for preventing said rollers and sprocket means from disengaging said track means.

Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to carriages used in lading-engaging bulkhead assemblies.

Bulkhead assemblies in which lading-engaging bulkhead panels are suspended from a carriage that moves along a pair of overhead tracks mounted in lading-carrying vehicles are well known. The carriage may include gears which are mounted on opposite sides thereof for engagement with drive apertures in the track to move the carriage therealong. These gears may be interconnected by a cross-shaft and driven in unison by manually-operated chain fall means connected to the cross-shaft. See, for example, U.S. Pat. No. 3,168,055 and No. 3,384,034. The development of heavier and more sophisticated bulkheads has made it difficult for one man using the chain fall of the prior art to drive the bulkhead assembly along the track.

Therefore, it is an object of this invention to provide improved means for driving the bulkhead assemblies which are operable by a single man.

Another object is to provide improved driving means which are compatible with existing chain fall mechanisms.

It is possible that the carriage assembly may drift or shift in the lateral direction on the overhead track so that it could be difficult to move the assembly. Features of prior art constructions have solved many of these problems but it is still possible that the carriage may shift toward the low side of the car as for example, when a railway car is parked on a banked curve. In such a case the fixed drive gear may (1) bind in the drive apertures thereby inhibiting rotation thereof, or (2) permit the lower outboard side of the carriage to engage a side wall of the track and become jammed. In either case, it may be difficult to move the carriage on the tracks.

Therefore, another object of this invention is to provide means associated with said carriage for aligning the carriage on the tracks with the drive gears and drive aperture in proper working relationship.

Yet another object is to provide means associated with the drive gears to prevent binding of the gears in the track in the event the carriage shifts.

These and further objects will become apparent from the following description and appended claims.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

There is provided by virtue of this invention an improved bulkhead carriage, for use with the heavier and more sophisticated bulkhead assemblies, which includes a force-multiplying gear-reduction mechanism adapted to cooperate with existing chain fall means for applying forces to the cross-shaft and drive gears which are greater than the forces applied to the chain fall so as to permit one man to easily move the bulkhead.

A pair of horizontally rotatable antibinding rollers is provided, with one roller mounted to each side of said carriage and arranged to engage the track side wall in the event the carriage tends to drift or shift sideways. These rollers permit the carriage to be moved longitudinally along the track even though it has shifted to a position where a roller engages a track side wall.

Each drive gear is mounted on a splined shaft connected to the carriage which permits the carriage to move freely in the lateral direction without hampering or binding the free operation of the drive gears.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a somewhat diagrammatic perspective view of a railway car having therein a bulkhead assembly which includes the bulkhead carriage of this invention;

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the carriage and the overhead track system;

FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of the right-hand side of the carriage shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a vertical sectional view taken substantially along line 4--4 of FIG. 2 showing the force-multiple means; and

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary, partially-broken-away, front elevational view of the carriage.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring now to the drawings, a bulkhead assembly 10 is shown which includes a carriage 12 that carries a central wall member 14a having mounted on opposite sides thereof pneumatically cushioned lading-engaging panels 14b and 14c. The assembly is positioned in a railway car 15 that has a floor 16 with longitudinally extending, apertured latch strips such as 18 and 20 embedded therein, and side walls such as 22, adjacent which longitudinally extending overhead tracks, such as 24 and 26, are positioned. The carriage 12 is supported and movable along the overhead tracks and the assembly includes latch pin means such as 28 at each corner of the wall member 14a for locking cooperation with the pin-receiving apertures in both the overhead tracks and floor strips to fixedly position the bulkhead in the car.

Each of the overhead tracks includes a horizontal plate 26a, which has an inner row of drive apertures 26b and an outer row of latch apertures 26c, with the inner edge of the plate being bent slightly upwardly. An inverted channel-like member 26d is welded to the plate 26a so as to cover the row of latch apertures and one leg 26e defines a vertical side wall for the track.

The carriage includes a box-like frame 30 which is fabricated from a pair of laterally extending channels 32 and 34 and a pair of transversely extending side plates 36 and 38 which are welded to the ends of the channels 32 and 34. Panel-hanging apertures such as 40 and 42 are provided in the side plates below the channels to which panel hangers such as 14d are connected for connecting the bulkhead to the carriage. The C-shaped roller support brackets 44 and 46 are welded to the side plates on each side of the frame. Roller support shafts 48 and 50 are welded at their inboard ends 48a and 50a to the side plates 36 and 38 and extend through the web of the C-shaped support brackets 44 and 46. Bearings 52 and 54 are mounted to the ends 48b and 50b of the roller support shafts and carry the rollers 56 and 58.

A roller bracket such as 60 or 62 is welded to the web section of each of the C-shaped support brackets and the horizontal antibinding rollers 64 and 66 are journalled within each of the brackets by pins 68 and 70 for rotation about a vertical axis.

The combination drive-gear rollers 72 and 74 are mounted to stub shafts 76 and 78 which include splined end portions 76b and 78b for cooperation with gear-locking keys 77 and 79 so as to permit rotation of the gears with the shafts while still providing for lateral movement of the shafts with respect to the gears. The stub shafts are supported by bearings 80 and 82 which are mounted to the side plates 36 and 38. The stub shafts pass through the bearing and the side plates and terminate within the frame 30. A hollow cross-shaft 84 telescopingly receives the inner ends 76a and 78a of the stub shafts and lock pins 84a and 84b secure the cross-shaft to the stub shafts.

Carriage hold-down stubs 86 and 88 are bolted through holddown support plates such as 87 and 89 to the sides of the carriage beneath the drive gears. Each stub has an axially-elongated groove such as 86a into which the teeth of the drive gear can extend. The inner and outer edges, 86b and 86c, of the groove define the limit of lateral shifting of the carriage with respect to the gear. The holddown stubs are positioned below the flange portion of the track so as to prevent the carriage from lifting off of the track.

A force multiplier assembly 90 is mounted to and within the frame 30 and includes a support bridge 91 fabricated from a pair of transversely extending support plates 92 and 94 which are welded to the channels 32 and 34 and upstanding journal plates 92a and 94a are welded to the inner edges of the support plates. In general, the assembly 90 is laterally centered within the frame 30. A laterally extending mounting shaft 96 is journalled to the journal plates 92a and 94a and is transversely centered on a line between the axis of rotation of the rollers 56 and 58 and the axis of rotation of the cross-shaft 84. The hanging apertures 40 and 42 and antibinding rollers 64 and 66 also lie on this line.

A chain-receiving sheave 98 having a large working diameter is fixedly secured to the shaft 96 and an endless, inching chain fall 100 is trained thereabout. A small diameter drive sprocket 102 is secured to the shaft 96 for rotation with the sheave 98, and a drive chain 104 is trained about the drive sprocket 102 and about a large driven sprocket 106 which is mounted to the cross-shaft 84.

In order to position or move the entire bulkhead assembly, a man standing on a railroad car floor in front of the panel 14c, for example, would reach through access apertures such as 14e in the panel and wall and would pull one side of the inching chain fall 100 which would cause the sheave 98 to rotate. Rotation of the sheave causes the rotation of the sprocket 102 through the shaft 96 and, in turn, drives the large sprocket 106 through the drive chain 104. Rotation of the sprocket 106 turns the cross-shaft 84 which rotates the stub shafts 76 and 78 and the respective gears 72 and 74. The gears coact with the track drive apertures, such as 26b, thereby causing the entire carriage to move along the overhead tracks. By pulling on the other side of the chain fall, the operator can reverse the direction of movement of the carriage and bulkhead assembly.

The pulling force applied to the chain by the operator is multiplied by virtue of the various torque relations between the sheave 98, sprocket 102 and sprocket 106. In the particular embodiment shown herein, the force applied to the drive gears 72 and 74 is approximately four times greater than the pulling force exerted by the operator on the chain fall 100. Thus, it can be appreciated that an operator using this carriage can move a bulkhead assembly of considerably greater weight than he could in the past.

When a railroad car is parked on a curved and banked section of railroad track, the entire carriage assembly may shift or move to the low side of the car. If this occurs the carriage moves freely since the gear stub shafts can slide within the gear. Lateral movement of the carriage is limited by engagement of the antibinding rollers with the track side wall. Even though the carriage may shift the holddown stub remains in position below the track and the gear teeth remain in the groove. Since the drive gears remain freely operable in the drive apertures and the antibinding rollers engage the track side walls, the bulkhead is easily moved by an operator using the fall chain.

It will be appreciated that numerous changes and modifications can be made to the embodiment disclosed herein without departing from the spirit and scope of this invention.