Title:
Wall panel lifting system used for forming multistory block and brick walls
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A wall panel lifting system used for forming multistory walls. The system includes a vertical wall panel lifting frame, a wall panel trolley frame and a wall panel. The wall panel lifting frame includes a plurality of vertical legs connected together using leg couplings, cross braces and angled lifting frame braces and a pair of vertical jacks. The lifting frame also includes a cable winch with a cable and pulleys. One end of the cable is attached to the trolley frame for lifting the trolley frame and attached wall panel as the building of the block or brick wall proceeds upwardly. The trolley frame is rides on wheels up and down inside a vertical groove in a front of the vertical legs of the lifting frame. The trolley frame includes a pair of vertical channel members. The channel members include a rear “U” shaped channel and a front “U” shaped channel. The front channel is attached to the wall panel and is used to move the wall panel from a retracted position to an extended level position for use as a guide in forming the block or brick wall.



Inventors:
Nichols, Ross (Northglenn, CO, US)
Application Number:
09/776199
Publication Date:
11/29/2001
Filing Date:
02/02/2001
Assignee:
Gage Brick Block Form, Inc.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
33/406, 52/127.2, 52/749.13, 269/904
International Classes:
E04F21/18; E04G21/18; (IPC1-7): E04G11/20; E04F21/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
CALLO, LAURA ANTOINETTE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
EDWIN H. CRABTREE (DENVER, CO, US)
Claims:

The embodiments of the invention for which an exclusive privilege and property right is claimed are defined as follows:



1. A wall panel lifting system used for forming multistory block or brick walls, the wall panel lifting system comprising: a vertical wall panel lifting frame; a wall panel trolley frame mounted on said panel lifting frame for riding vertically up and down thereon; a wall panel adapted for laying blocks or bricks thereagainst, said wall panel mounted on a front of said trolley frame; and lifting means attached to said panel lifting frame and said trolley frame, said lifting means for raising and lowering said trolley frame and said wall panel on said lifting frame.

2. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 1 wherein said lifting means includes a cable winch with cable, said cable winch attached to said panel lifting frame, one end of said cable attached to a top of said trolley frame.

3. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 1 wherein said trolley frame is slidably mounted up and down in a vertical groove in a front of said lifting frame.

4. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 3 wherein said trolley frame includes a vertical flange with a plurality of wheels mounted thereon, said wheels engaging sides of said vertical groove in the front of said lifting frame.

5. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 1 wherein said trolley frame includes a pair of vertical channel members, each of said channel members having a rear “U” shaped channel and a front “U” shaped channel, said front “U” shaped channel spring biased and expandable on said rear “U” shaped channel, said wall panel attached to the front of said front “U” shaped channel

6. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 1 wherein said panel lifting frame includes a pair of vertical legs with a plurality of leg sections connected together using leg section couplings.

7. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 1 wherein said panel lifting frame also includes angled lifting frame braces and a pair of vertical jacks attached to said vertical legs for plumbing said panel lifting frame horizontally and vertically.

8. A wall panel lifting system used for forming multistory block or brick walls, the wall panel lifting system comprising: a vertical wall panel lifting frame, said panel lifting frame including a pair of vertical legs connected together using cross braces; a wall panel trolley frame slidably mounted on said vertical legs of said panel lifting frame for riding vertically up and down thereon; a light weight metal wall panel adapted for laying blocks or bricks thereagainst, said wall panel retractably mounted on a front of said trolley frame; and a cable winch with cable, said cable winch attached to a side of one of said vertical legs, one end of said cable attached to a top of said trolley frame.

9. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 8 wherein said trolley frame is slidably mounted up and down in a vertical groove in a front of said vertical legs of said lifting frame.

10. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 9 wherein said trolley frame includes a vertical flange with a plurality of wheels mounted thereon, said wheels engaging sides of the vertical groove in the front of said pair of vertical legs of said lifting frame.

11. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 8 wherein said trolley frame includes a pair of vertical channel members, each of said channel members having a rear “U” shaped channel and a front “U” shaped channel, said front “U” shaped expandable and retractable on said rear “U” shaped channel, said wall panel attached to the front of said front “U” shaped channel.

12. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 11 wherein said trolley frame includes a rotatable torque tube mounted thereon, ends of said torque tube mounted on cams, said cams engaging said front “U” shaped channels for expanding said wall panel outwardly into a level or plumb position.

13. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 12 further including a torque handle attached to a portion of said torque tube, said torque handle for rotating said torque tube on said trolley frame.

14. A wall panel lifting system used for forming multistory block or brick walls, the wall panel lifting system comprising: a vertical wall panel lifting frame, said panel lifting frame including a pair of vertical parallel legs having leg sections connected together using leg section couplings; a wall panel trolley frame with a plurality of wheels mounted on said vertical parallel legs of said panel lifting frame for riding vertically up and down thereon; a light weight metal wall panel adapted for laying blocks or bricks thereagainst, said wall panel retractably mounted on a front of said trolley frame; and a cable winch with cable, said cable winch attached to a side of one of said vertical parallel legs, one end of said cable attached to a top of said trolley frame.

15. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 14 wherein said wheels of said trolley frame ride up and down on sides of a vertical groove in a front of said vertical parallel legs of said lifting frame.

16. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 15 wherein said trolley frame includes a vertical flange with said wheels mounted thereon.

17. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 14 wherein said trolley frame includes a pair of vertical channel members, each of said channel members having a rear “U” shaped channel and a front “U” shaped channel, said front “U” shaped expandable and retractable on said rear “U” shaped channel, said wall panel attached to the front of said front “U” shaped channel.

18. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 17 wherein said trolley frame includes a rotatable torque tube and torque handle mounted thereon, ends of said torque tube mounted on cams, said cams engaging said front “U” shaped channels for expanding said wall panel outwardly into a level or plumb position.

19. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 14 wherein said panel lifting frame includes an upper cross brace, a middle cross brace and a lower cross brace, ends of said braces attached to said vertical parallel legs.

20. The wall panel lifting system as described in claim 19 wherein said panel lifting frame also includes angled lifting frame braces and a pair of vertical jacks attached to said vertical parallel legs for plumbing said panel lifting frame horizontally and vertically.

Description:

[0001] This patent application is based on an earlier provisional patent application filed in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Feb. 5, 2000 and having Ser. No. 60/180,497.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] (a) Field of the Invention

[0003] This invention relates to a system for raising a lightweight wall panel used for masonry work and more particularly, but not by way of limitation, to a system for lifting the wall panel during multilevel building construction and leveling the panel next to a block or brick wall to be formed. The panel used as a guide in laying the block or brick thereagainst.

[0004] (b) Discussion of Known Art

[0005] Heretofore, brick and block masonry walls have been built by hand, one brick or block at a time. The wall was erected using hand tools for applying mortar on the sides and on the tops of the bricks or blocks. The mortar was mixed on site. This type of wall construction is labor intensive, it is expensive, it is time consuming, it requires mixing mortar on site and it requires skilled masons for well constructed walls.

[0006] Also, brick and block walls have been preconstructed by forming walls in forms on a horizontal surface on a job site. When the wall is completed, the wall is hoisted upwardly using heavy equipment into a vertical position and attached to a side of a building. This method of wall construction is also time consuming and expensive when having to use additional equipment for lifting each completed wall into place.

[0007] The new wall panel lifting system uses a light weight wall panel. This type of wall panel is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 5,937,610 to Gage Behunin. In this patent, a method of forming block and brick walls is described which allows unskilled brick layers to build a brick or block wall. The method takes half the time when compared to building brick and block walls using mortar and hand tools thereby greatly reducing the overall cost of building construction.

[0008] The subject invention provides a system for lifting and leveling the light weight wall panel when building multistory buildings using block or brick.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0009] In view of the foregoing, it is a primary objective of the subject system to greatly reduce the time required to build either a brick or a block multistory wall. The reduced time being in an order of up to half and more of what is normally required in standard brick and block multistory wall construction using mortar and mason hand tools.

[0010] Another object of the invention is to provide a fast and efficient system for raising one or more lightweight wall panels continuously as multistory brick and block walls are constructed upwardly. The wall panel or panels, when placed next to a second story, a third story and higher, are automatically leveled or plumbed vertically and horizontally for ease in laying the block or brick against the side of the panels.

[0011] Still another object of the disclosed invention is to provide a system which allows the use of novice or unskilled workman to quickly build a block or brick multistory wall that is straight, level and plumb thereby eliminating the need for skilled craftsman. The multistory walls can be build at a greatly reduced cost due to savings in time and labor.

[0012] The wall panel lifting system used for forming multistory walls includes broadly a vertical wall panel lifting frame, a wall panel trolley frame and a wall panel releasably mounted on the front of the trolley frame. The wall panel is made of a lightweight metal such as aluminum and the like for ease in handling and moving during wall construction.

[0013] The wall panel lifting frame includes a plurality of vertical legs connected together using leg couplings, cross braces and angled lifting frame braces and a pair of vertical jacks. The lifting frame also includes a cable winch with a cable and pulleys. One end of the cable is attached to the trolley frame for lifting the trolley frame and attached wall panel as the building of the block or brick wall proceeds upwardly.

[0014] The trolley frame is rides on wheels up and down inside a vertical groove in a front of the vertical legs of the lifting frame. The trolley frame includes a pair of vertical channel members. The channel members include a rear “U” shaped channel and a front “U” shaped channel. The front “U” shaped channel is spring biased and expandable on the rear “U” shaped channel. The wall panel is releasable attached to the front “U” shaped member. The two vertical channel members are attached to ends of an upper horizontal brace member and a lower horizontal brace member. A horizontal torque tube with torque handle is rotatably mounted on the trolley frame. On the opposite ends of the torque tube are attached to a pair of cams. The cams are received inside the vertical channel members.

[0015] When the torque handle is rotated from a retracted position to an extended position, the cams move the expandable front “U” shaped channel outwardly, which in turn moves the wall panel outwardly into a level or plumb position. A front of the wall panel is now ready for use as a guide in laying the blocks or bricks thereagainst.

[0016] When the wall is completed, the torque handle is moved for rotating the cams into a retracted position. Coil springs attached to the front and rear channels are used in aiding the retraction of the front channel rearwardly into a portion of the rear channel. At this time, the wall panel is also moved rearwardly away from the completed wall. The trolley frame and wall panel, in a retracted position are now free to be lifted upwardly, using the winch and cable, for continuing the construction of the multistory block or brick wall.

[0017] These and other objects of the present invention will become apparent to those familiar with brick and block wall construction, multistory wall construction and the problems associated therewith from the following detailed description, showing novel construction, combination, and elements as herein described, and more particularly defined by the appended claims, it being understood that changes in the precise embodiments to the herein disclosed invention are meant to be included as coming within the scope of the claims, except insofar as they may be precluded by the prior art.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0018] The accompanying drawings illustrate complete preferred embodiments of the present invention according to the best modes presently devised for the practical application of the principles thereof, and in which:

[0019] FIG. 1 is a front perspective view of the subject wall panel lifting system. The system is shown including broadly a lifting frame and trolley frame. A wall panel releasably attached to the front of the trolley frame is not shown in this drawing.

[0020] FIG. 2 is another front perspective view of the subject wall panel lifting system shown a wall panel mounted on the front of the trolley frame. A portion of a single story block wall is shown having been laid next to the wall panel.

[0021] FIG. 3 is still another front perspective view of the wall panel lifting system. In this view, a winch and cable have been used to raise the lifting frame and attached wall panel to a second story position.

[0022] FIG. 4 is a rear perspective view of a lower portion of the lifting frame and a rear view of the portion of the trolley frame.

[0023] FIG. 5 is an enlarged rear perspective view of a portion of the lifting frame and trolley frame and illustrating one end of a torque tube and a torque handle used for extending and retracting the trolley frame and attached wall panel.

[0024] FIG. 6 is an enlarged front perspective view of a portion of the lifting frame, torque tube and torque handle. The torque tube is shown with a cam mounted on one end. The cam received inside an expandable vertical channel which is part of the trolley frame.

DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0025] While the invention will be described and disclosed in connection with certain preferred embodiments, the description is not intended to limit the invention to the specific embodiments shown and described, but rather the invention is intended to cover all alternative embodiments and modifications that fall within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the claims included herein as well as any equivalents of the disclosed and claimed invention.

[0026] In FIG. 1, a front perspective view of the subject wall panel lifting system is shown having general reference numeral 10. The system 10 includes broadly a wall panel lifting frame having a general reference numeral 12, a wall panel trolley frame having a general reference numeral 14 and a lightweight wall panel having general reference numeral 16. The wall panel 16 is shown in FIGS. 2 and 3.

[0027] The lifting frame 12 includes a pair of parallel vertical legs 17. The legs 17 include a plurality of leg sections 18 joined together using leg section couplings 20. In FIG. 1, each individual leg section 18 is approximately 6 feet long, but can be of various lengths. The height of the lifting frame 12, for example in the drawings, is 24 feet for building a three story block or brick building. As mentioned above, the wall panel system 10 can be used for building various heights of multistory buildings. The parallel legs 17 are joined together and held rigid by an upper cross brace 22, a middle cross brace 24, a lower cross brace 26 and an angle cross brace 28.

[0028] The lifting frame 12 also includes a pair of adjustable angled lifting frame braces 30 for adjusting the frame 12 into a vertical position and a pair of vertical jacks 32. The jacks 32 are attached to the bottom of the two parallel legs 17 and are used for adjusting the frame 12 into a horizontal position.

[0029] Further, the lifting frame 12 includes a cable winch 34 with one end of a cable 36 attached to the winch 34 and threaded over a pair of pulleys 38 mounted on top of the upper cross brace 22. An opposite end 37 of the cable 36 is attached to the top of the trolley frame 14 for lifting the trolley frame 14 and the attached wall panel 16 as the building of the block or brick wall proceeds upwardly as shown in FIG. 3. While the lifting frame 12 is shown with the cable winch 34 and cable 36 used for lifting the trolley frame 14, it can be appreciated that there are a variety lifting devices which could be used equally well in lifting the trolley frame 14 without departing from the spirit and scope of the subject invention.

[0030] The trolley frame 14 is slidably mounted up and down in a vertical groove 40 in a front of the vertical legs 17 of the lifting frame 12. The trolley frame 14 rides up and down inside the legs 17 using a vertical flange 39 attached to the frame 14 with a plurality of wheels 41 mounted on the flange 39. A portion of the vertical flange 39 and two pair of the wheels 41 are shown in FIGS. 4 and 5.

[0031] The trolley frame 14 includes a pair of vertical channel members 42. The channel members 42 include a rear “U” shaped channel 44 and a front “U” shaped channel 46. The two channels 44 and 46 are shown in detail in FIG. 6. The front “U” shaped channel 46 is spring biased and expandable on the rear “U” shaped channel 44. The wall panel 16 is releasable attached to the front “U” shaped channel 46.

[0032] The two vertical channel members 42 are attached to ends of an upper horizontal brace member 48 and a lower horizontal brace member 50. A horizontal torque tube 52 with a torque handle 54 is rotatably mounted on the trolley frame 14. These features are shown in detail in FIG. 6. On the opposite ends of the torque tube 52 are attached to a pair of cams 56. The cams 56 are received inside the vertical channel members 42.

[0033] In FIG. 2, another front perspective view of the subject wall panel lifting system 10 is shown. In this view, the wall panel 16 is shown mounted on the front of the trolley frame 14. A portion of a single story block wall 58 is shown having been laid next to the wall panel 16. The block wall 58 can be built using conventional masonry methods or can be formed using the method and system of building a block or brick wall as described in U.S. Pat. No. 5,937,610.

[0034] In FIG. 3, still another front perspective view of the wall panel lifting system 10 is shown. In this view, the winch 34 and cable 36 have been used to raise the trolley frame 14 and the attached wall panel 16 to a second story position. The block wall 60 has been removed in this drawing for added clarity. It should be noted in this drawing, there are 4 threaded adjustment pins 60 threadably attached to a portion of the two legs 17. Opposite ends of the pins 60 are attached to a portion of the completed block wall 58 shown in FIG. 2. The pins 60 along with the vertical jacks 32 and lifting frame braces 30 provide for leveling the lifting system 10 both vertically and horizontal and added stability.

[0035] In FIG. 4, a rear perspective view of a lower portion of the lifting frame 12 and a rear view of a portion of the trolley frame 14 is shown. In this view, the sides of the two front “U” shaped channels 46 of the trolley frame 14 are shown. The channels 46 include can grooves 62 with cam rollers 64 riding in the grooves 62. The cam rollers 64 are attached to opposite sides of the rear “U” shaped channel 44 shown in FIG. 6. The wall panel 16 attached to the front of the trolley frame 14 is not shown in this drawing.

[0036] In FIG. 5, an enlarged rear perspective view of a portion of the lifting frame 12 and trolley frame 14 are shown illustrating one end of a torque tube 52 and the torque handle 54. When the torque handle 54 is moved upwardly, as indicated by arrow 66, the front “U” shaped channels 46 are engaged by the cams 56 and the channels 46 move the wall panel 16 outwardly into an extended and leveled position for use in forming the block or brick wall.

[0037] In FIG. 6, an enlarged front perspective view of a portion of the trolley frame 14, the torque tube 52 and torque handle 54 are shown. The torque tube 52 is shown with the cam 56 mounted on one end. The cam 56 is received inside the expandable front “U” shaped channel 46 and the rear “U” shaped channel 44 which are part of the trolley frame 14. The channel 46 includes a wear plate 68 for engaging the cam 56.

[0038] In operation, when starting a single story block or brick wall, the torque handle 54 is rotated from a rearward retracted position to an extended position, as indicated by arrow 66. At this time, the cams 56 move the expandable front “U” shaped channel 46 outwardly, as indicated by arrows 67, which in turn moves the attached wall panel 16 outwardly into a level or plumb position. A front of the wall panel 16 is now ready for use as a guide in laying the blocks or bricks thereagainst.

[0039] When the block or brick wall is completed, the torque handle 54 is moved rearwardly for rotating the cams 56 into a retracted position. Coil springs, which are not shown in the drawings, are attached to the front and rear channels 46 and 44 are used in aiding the retraction of the front channel 46 rearwardly into a portion of the rear channel 44. At this time, the wall panel 16 is also moved rearwardly on the trolley frame 14 and away from the completed wall. The trolley frame 14 and wall panel 16, in a retracted position are now free to be lifted upwardly, using the winch 34 and the cable 36, for continuing the construction of a multistory block or brick wall.

[0040] Thus, it is important to note that while the invention has been particularly shown, described and illustrated in detail with reference to the preferred embodiments and modifications thereof, it should be understood by those skilled in the art that equivalent changes in form and detail may be made therein without departing from the true spirit and scope of the invention as claimed, except as precluded by the prior art.