Title:
CONCRETE MOULD POSITIONER
United States Patent 3868025


Abstract:
This invention relates to a positioner which is useful both for the removal of spacers between the moulds of the aligned moulds used for the moulding of prestressed concrete ties, and for the repositioning of the moulds after the moulded ties have been removed therefrom. Prestressing is normally effected by tensioning a series of wires between bolsters at the ends of a moulding bay, the moulds having spacers therebetween. When the spacers have been removed the tension is relaxed and the moulds crowd together under the effect of the resilience of the wires. The invention provides means and method for withdrawing the spacers from between the moulds by the use of a boom outstanding from a vehicle which straddles moulds, and the same vehicle is used for repositioning the moulds by means of pressure actuated cylinders on the vehicle which engage one of a series of moulds (after the spacers have been replaced), and move that mould to thereby effect moving of all moulds of the series.



Inventors:
BRATCHELL ROBERT LYNDON
Application Number:
05/367128
Publication Date:
02/25/1975
Filing Date:
06/05/1973
Assignee:
CONCRETE INDUSTRIES (MONIER) LIMITED
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
425/110
International Classes:
B28B7/00; B28B7/26; B28B23/06; (IPC1-7): B60P3/00
Field of Search:
214/1R,1D,1P,394,396 264
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3756428APPARATUS FOR HANDLING BALES1973-09-04White
3510012TUBE BUNDLE HANDLING APPARATUS1970-05-05Van Meteren
2772010Storage tank trailer1956-11-27Buehring
1920716N/A1933-08-01Schafer



Primary Examiner:
Werner, Frank E.
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Oldham & Oldham Co.
Claims:
What I claim is

1. A positioner for positioning a series of aligned moulds used for the moulding of prestressed concrete ties on a base which has a moulding bed and a pair of rails positioned one on each side of the bed, comprising a vehicle having a frame, rail engaging wheels engageable on said rails and supporting the frame, locking means on the frame engageable with co-operating locking means on the base to lock said vehicle against movement along the rails, a pressure actuated mould positioning cylinder carried by the frame, and mould engaging means on the piston rod of said mould positioning cylinder, so constructed and arranged that, when said piston rod is engaged with a mould of said series, the vehicle is locked against said movement, and fluid at pressure is introduced into said cylinder, operation of said cylinder effects movement of said series over the base.

2. A positioner according to claim 1 wherein there are two of said pressure actuated mould positioning cylinders and a trunnion mounting between each cylinder and said frame.

3. A positioner according to claim 2 wherein said mould engaging means comprises a pin extending from an end of the piston rod of each respective cylinder.

4. A positioner according to claim 1 wherein said locking means on the frame comprise a pair of lugs standing inwardly from the sides of the frame, an aperture through each lug, and respective locking pins insertable through the apertures, the locking pins being of sufficient length to also engage apertures in respective outstanding flanges of said base when the lug apertures are aligned therewith.

5. A positioner according to claim 1 comprising bearings in said frame, a hand wheel shaft rotatable in the bearing, a hand wheel on said hand wheel shaft, a sprocket on said hand wheel shaft, a sprocket on a said wheel, and a dirve chain coupling the sprockets for drive.

6. A positioner according to claim 1 further comprising a pressure actuated extraction cylinder carried by the frame and extending in a direction transversely to the direction of travel of the positioner.

7. A positioner according to claim 6 further comprising a boom, means coupling the boom to said frame, a pulley on one end of the boom, a cable extending around the said pulley, means on one end of the cable for coupling the cable to the piston rod of the extraction cylinder, and a hook on the other end of the cable.

8. A positioner according to claim 7 wherein said means coupling said boom to the frame comprise a first abutment member on the frame, a second abutment member on the boom complementary with the first abutment member, and a frame cross member, so constructed and arranged that the boom rests upon said first abutment member with said second abutment member in engagement therewith, and bears upwardly against said frame cross member.

Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to a positioner for the positioning of concrete moulds in a series of multi-cavity moulds used for the moulding of prestressed concrete ties, and to a method of positioning the moulds. The invention also relates to means for extracting spacers between the moulds and to a method of extracting spacers.

There are two time consuming problems which are encountered when multi-cavity moulds arranged in aligned series are to be positioned. One of the problems which is encountered is that when the concrete ties have been moulded, the spacers between them removed, and the tension on the prestressing wires is released, the tension in the wires causes the moulds to move toward one another along the base rails of the bed on which the moulding has taken place. The wires are subsequently severed and the ties removed therefrom. The moulds are then too closely spaced to reposition the spacers between them, and the moulds must be "opened up" before the spacers can be inserted for the next moulding operation, and then closed on the spacers. Although each mould closes in towards its neighbour by only a small distance, the moulds closest to the wire straining mechanism of the tensioning bolster move a considerable distance, the end mould for example moving a total distance which approximates the sum of the distances moved by each other mould towards its respective neighbour. Heretofore repositioning has been by hand, and has been effected by means of bars, but the time required to move the moulds by hand has been excessive. The main object of this invention therefore, is to provide means whereby the moulds can be quickly and efficiently repositioned on the base rails of the bed.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Means according to this invention may be briefly explained as a vehicle arranged to run on the rails which extend along each side of the concrete moulding bed, there being locking means on the vehicle which, when engaged, prevent movement of the vehicle, and there also being a pressure actuated cylinder on the vehicle which is engageable with a mould, and arranged to move that mould, and thereby other moulds in a series including that mould, along the bed.

More specifically, the means of the invention consist of a positioner for positioning a series of aligned moulds used for the moulding of prestressed concrete ties on a base which has a moulding bed and a pair of rails positioned one on each side of the bed, comprising a vehicle having a frame, rail engaging wheels engageable on said rails and supporting the frame, locking means on the frame engageable with co-operating locking means on the base to lock said vehicle against movement along the rails, a pressure actuated mould positioning cylinder carried by the frame, and mould engaging means on the piston rod of said mould positioning cylinder, so constructed and arranged that, when said piston rod is engaged with a mould of said series, the vehicle is locked against said movement, and fluid at pressure is introduced into said cylinder, operation of said cylinder effects movement of said series over the base.

The method according to this invention may be briefly explained as including placing spacer bars between concrete moulds of a series of moulds on a bed, locking a vehicle against movement over the bed, engaging the piston rod of a pressure actuated mould positioning cylinder on the vehicle with a mould of the series, and introducing fluid at pressure into the cylinder so as to drive the mould over the bed and in turn urge the moulds of the series into abutment with the spacers between them.

More specifically, the method of the invention consists of a method of positioning a series of aligned moulds used for the moulding of prestressed concrete ties on a moulding bed having a pair of rails positioned one on each side of the base, comprising placing a series of spacer bars between respective moulds of said series, locking against movement along the rails a vehicle carried by wheels engaging the rails, engaging the piston rod of a pressure actuated mould positioning cylinder on the vehicle with a mould of said series and introducing fluid at pressure into the cylinder to thereby drive said mould to move over the base, in turn urging the moulds of said series into abutment with said spacer bars therebetween and moving the other moulds of said series over the base.

The means and method of this invention then enable the repositioning of moulds to be effected by a minimum of handling, and for example the series of moulds which need to be repositioned by the greatest amount (the series closest the tensioning mechanism) may be separated from one another by that small distance which is necessary to insert the spacers, and then moved (as a series) back to their original positions. Then the next series is moved, and so on until all moulds have been repositioned.

In the moulding of ties in multi-cavity moulds arranged in aligned series, the spacers are removed from between the moulds after the concrete poured thereinto has partially set. This again is a time consuming operation if done by hand and a further object of this invention is to provide a machine which can be utilised for the withdrawal of spacers.

Thus in a further aspect of the invention there is included an extraction cylinder carried by the frame, a boom extending outwardly from the frame aligned with the extraction cylinder, a pulley on an end of the boom, and a cable coupled to the movable member of the extraction cylinder, passing over the pulley and having a hook at its other end, the hook being engageable in an aperture in a spacer, so constructed and arranged that operation of the extraction cylinder can move the hook away from the chassis frame to thereby withdraw a spacer when engaged by the hook.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the drawings,

FIG. 1 is a schematic end elevation of a concrete mould positioner,

FIG. 2 is a corresponding schematic elevation,

FIG. 3 is a view corresponding to FIG. 1, and showing the extractor cylinder arrangement,

FIG. 4 is a view corresponding to FIG. 2 and showing the mould engaging means engaging a mould of a series of moulds, and

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the boom which is used in conjunction with the extractor cylinder.

In this embodiment a base 10 for supporting moulds 11 comprises a pair of channels 12 (FIG. 3) having their flanges facing inwardly and a slab of concrete 13 therebetween, the concrete retaining the channels in parallel spaced relationship. On the outer side of each channel 12 is positioned a rail 14, the rails 14 being arranged to support the means for the pouring of concrete, normally a travelling mould supported on a frame having wheels which run along the rails. The pouring means forms no part of this invention and is not illustrated herein.

The moulds 11 are arranged as multi-cavity moulds (in this embodiment there being five cavities to each mould) each multi-cavity mould 11 being carried on a frame 17 which is supported by the upper flanges of the respective base channels 12 and guided for slidable movement therealong by depending lugs 18. The multi-cavity moulds 11 are arranged as a series of aligned moulds so that the travelling hopper can discharge concrete into the moulds in succession as the hopper moves along the rails 14.

At each end of the bay in which the sleepers or ties are to be moulded there is provided bolster means and at one end the bolster means is provided with tensioning means the arrangement being such that wires 20 for reinforcing purposes extend between the bolsters and are tensioned by the tensioning means. The multi-cavity moulds 11 are divided into series, there being six multi-cavity moulds in each series, and between each series of six there is provided a plurality of channel-section spacers 21.

The lower most of the channel-section spacers 21 is the only spacer illustrated (FIG. 4) and rests upon the base channels 12 and supports the lower most of a series of reinforcing wires 20, and these in turn support a shallower channel section spacer (not shown) supporting a second row, a third shallower section spacer resting upon the second row of reinforcing wires and supporting a third row. For the purpose of clarity, two rows only of wires 20 are shown. Between the multi-cavity moulds of each series of six there are further spacer means which correspond in depth to the channel-section spacers but are in the form of bars or plate members, and designated 23. Each of the spacers 21 and 23 is provided with an aperture 24 (FIG. 3) at one end so that it can be withdrawn from between the moulds.

After the concrete has been poured and has partially set it is necessary to remove the spacers 21 and 23 between the moulds 11 so that the wires 20 between the moulds can be severed, and the concrete mould positioner of this invention is utilised for the purpose of removing the spacers.

The mould positioner of this embodiment comprises a chassis frame 28 having a pair of parallel lower frame members 29 with wheels 30 between them, the wheels 30 running on the respective rails 14 so that the chassis frame 28 is guided for movement over the moulds. The chassis frame 28 is provided with a transversely positioned trunnion mounted extraction cylinder 32 and the extraction cylinder 32 has its piston rod 33 lying in a channel-shaped socket. A boom 34 (FIGS. 3 and 5) is positionable in this socket and is supported by an abutment member 35 on the frame 28, the inner end of the boom engaging beneath a frame cross member 36 which straddles across the top of the extraction cylinder 32. As shown in FIG. 5, boom 34 itself is in the form of a pair of channel members 40 with the flanges facing outwardly from one another having their bases joined together by a plate 41, the outer end of the boom having a pair of depending lugs carrying a pin on which a pulley 42 is rotational. A cable 43 extends over the pulley 42 and is provided with shackle means 44 at one end for connecting to the piston rod 33 and a hook 45 at the other end for engaging an aperture 24 of a spacer 23. The underface of the boom has a small length of angle 47 extending across it which constitutes as an abutment member and abuts the complementary abutment member 35 of the chassis frame 28. The frame 28 is also provided with hydraulic pump means 49 to provide hydraulic fluid at pressure and is also provided with valve means (not shown) for operating the extraction cylinder.

After the concrete has partly set but before it fully sets (for example, after a period of about 4 hours) the hook is engaged in an aperture in one end of a spacer and the extraction cylinder is operated to apply tension to the cable thereby extracting the spacer from between a pair of adjacent moulds. This operation is continued for all the spacers between two adjacent moulds, and the machine is moved to the next set of spacers. To effect the machine movement the machine is provided with a hand wheel 50 on a shaft extending across the machine and having two sprockets (not shown) thereon, the sprockets being connected by drive chains 51 to respective support wheels 30 on the frame.

After all the spacers have been extracted and the concrete has set, the tensioning bolster (not shown) is released and the strain in the metal of the reinforcing wires between adjacent moulds and at the ends of the moulds causes a movement of the moulds from the tensioning bolster end towards the other (anchor) end, there of course being more movement of the moulds at the tensioning bolster end than exists at the other end. After this movement has taken place the wires are severed and the concrete ties are removed from the cavities of the moulds.

Before the next moulding process can take place it is necessary for the cavities to be repositioned apart from one another so that the spacers can be placed therebetween, and to effect this the concrete mould positioner is again used.

The concrete mould positioner of this embodiment is provided with a pair of mould positioning cylinders 55 each of which is a trunnion mounted cylinder carried on the frame 17 and being provided with a pin 56 on a swivel clevis 57 its piston rod end which is arranged to be positioned in a respective receiving aperture 58 in a mould 11. The pin 56 is dropped into the aperture to engage the mould or lifted from the aperture to be released from the mould, and if it is desired to use the machine without the pin in position, then a retaining bar 59 is inserted between the trunnion mounted cylinder and a pair of brackets 60 on the frame 17 of the machine.

The chassis frame 28 of the positioning machine is provided with inwardly directed lugs 64 (FIG. 3) which pass in close proximity to a flange 65 extending outwardly from each of the base channels 12, and the arrangement is that an aperture in a lug will align with an aperture in the flange and a pair of frame lock pins 66 are then dropped into the flanges 65 through apertures in the respective lugs 64.

The first series of six of multi-cavity moulds 11 nearest the tensioning bolster are separated from one another by means of a bar and the lower most of the bar spacers 23 between the moulds of the series are positioned, the machine is run over the first group of six and pins 56 are engaged with the sixth mould 11, the trunnion mounted mould positioning cylinders 55 then being operated to move the first group of six moulds towards the tensioning bolster, the support frames 17 sliding over the base 10. The lower most of the three channel-section spacers 21 between the moulds is then positioned on the base rails, and the operation is repeated for the next group of six moulds. In this way all the moulds are urged in the direction of the tensioning bolster, that is, in a direction opposite to the direction of their movement when the tension was released at the end of the previous pouring operation. The tensioning wires are then run out, the further spacers positioned between the moulds and between the groups of moulds respectively, and the entire pouring operation is repeated.

A brief consideration of this embodiment will indicate that the invention, although very simple, provides means for reducing the labour requirement of the repositioning of moulds and the removal of spacers, and it will be seen that the machine which is utilised for this purpose is of relatively low cost.