Title:
Rubber railroad tie
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The disclosed device is directed towards a rubber railroad tie comprising a body including rubber tire byproduct configured as a railroad tie. Another embodiment comprises a rubber railroad tie comprising a body including rubber tire byproduct configured as a railroad tie wherein the body is configured from multiple layers of rubber tires stacked into a stratified structure. Another embodiment comprises a rubber railroad tie comprising a body including rubber tire byproduct configured as a railroad tie wherein the body is defined by crumb rubber formed into a railroad tie shape.



Inventors:
Mcbain, Theodore (Tahoe City, CA, US)
Application Number:
10/242302
Publication Date:
04/17/2003
Filing Date:
09/11/2002
Assignee:
MCBAIN THEODORE
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E01B3/44; (IPC1-7): E01B3/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
MCCARRY JR, ROBERT J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP (Glendale, CA, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A rubber railroad tie comprising: a rubber tire byproduct body configured as a railroad tie.

2. The rubber railroad tie of claim 1 wherein said body is configured from multiple layers of rubber tires stacked into a stratified structure.

3. The rubber railroad tie of claim 2 wherein said multiple layers of rubber tires stacked into a stratified structure comprise strips of rubber tire.

4. The rubber railroad tie of claim 2 wherein said stratified structure comprises a mesh structure of interwoven tire strips.

5. The rubber railroad tie of claim 2 wherein said stratified structure comprises strips of tire alternatively aligned in at least one of parallel, orthogonal and diagonal patterns.

6. The rubber railroad tie of claim 2 wherein said strips of tire are bound together by a binding material.

7. The rubber railroad tie of claim 2 further comprising: at least one tie plate coupled to said body; at least one fastener coupled to said at least one tie plate.

8. The rubber railroad tie of claim 2 further comprising: at least one reinforcement member disposed in said stratified structure.

9. The rubber railroad tie of claim 2 further comprising: a set of rail fasteners coupled to said body.

10. The rubber railroad tie of claim 9 wherein said set of rail fasteners is coupled to said body with at least one tie plate and fasteners.

11. The rubber railroad tie of claim 1 wherein said body is defined by crumb rubber formed into a railroad tie shape.

12. The rubber railroad tie of claim 11 wherein said crumb rubber is combined with a bonding agent to form said railroad tie shape.

13. The rubber railroad tie of claim 11 further comprising: at least one tie plate and fastener coupled to said body.

14. The rubber railroad tie of claim 11 further comprising: at least one reinforcement member disposed in said body.

15. The rubber railroad tie of claim 11 further comprising; a set of rail fasteners coupled to said body.

16. The rubber railroad tie of claim 15 wherein said set of rail fasteners is integral with said body.

17. The rubber railroad tie of claim 15 wherein said set of rail fasteners are coupled to said body with at least one tie plate and fasteners.

18. The rubber railroad tie of claim 1 further comprising: a coating disposed on said body.

19. The rubber railroad tie of claim 1 wherein said coating is selected from the group consisting of ceramic, metal, polymer, and paint.

20. The rubber railroad tie of claim 2 further comprising; a coating disposed on said body.

21. The rubber railroad tie of claim 11 further comprising: a coating disposed on said body.

Description:

CROSS-RELATED

[0001] This application is a Utility application which claims priority to an earlier filed U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/322,808 filed Sep. 11, 2001, and expressly incorporates by reference the provisional application.

BACKGROUND

[0002] The present disclosure relates to the field of railroad tie systems. In particular, the present disclosure relates to a rubber railroad tie made from recycled rubber tires.

[0003] Rubber tires for use with automobiles and wheeled vehicles have limited useful lives as tires. The automobile tire is designed to provide traction and stable support for vehicles for about 20,000 miles to about 60,000 miles of automobile use. After the useful life, the tire is discarded and then replaced with a new tire. The discarded tires are dumped into mountains of tire piles in landfills. The automobile tire is made mostly of rubber that is a material that remains stable for many years after use. The automobile tires in large piles catch and retain rain and snow melt, thus forming pools of stagnant water. The mosquito has adapted to the new environment of stagnant water in the tires and utilizes the tires as breeding grounds. In addition to the environmental hazards of mosquito breeding, the tire dumps occupy landfill space that does not decompose and pose a fire hazard. There exists a need for a secondary use of the used but non-decomposed tires.

[0004] Railroad systems utilize steel rails laid on railroad ties anchored to a rail bed. The railroad ties have traditionally been manufactured from wood. Wood has traditionally been an inexpensive resource that when treated, made useful and stable railroad ties. Wooden railroad ties decay over time and must be replaced. Alternatives to the wooden railroad tie have been employed, such as concrete with reinforcement steel. Concrete railroad ties also deteriorate over time due to exposure to the elements and other wear mechanisms. There still is a need to have alternatives to wood or concrete for manufacturing railroad ties.

SUMMARY

[0005] The disclosed device is directed towards a rubber railroad tie comprising a body including rubber tire byproduct configured as a railroad tie. Another embodiment comprises a rubber railroad tie comprising a body including rubber tire byproduct configured as a railroad tie wherein the body is configured from multiple layers of rubber tires stacked into a stratified structure. Another embodiment comprises a rubber railroad tie comprising a body including rubber tire byproduct configured as a railroad tie wherein the body is defined by crumb rubber formed into a railroad tie shape.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIGURES

[0006] FIG. 1 is a side view of an exemplary rubber railroad tie;

[0007] FIG. 2 is a top view of an exemplary rubber railroad tie;

[0008] FIG. 3 is an end view of an exemplary rubber railroad tie; and

[0009] FIG. 4 is a side view of another exemplary rubber railroad tie.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0010] Persons of ordinary skill in the art will realize that the following description of the present invention is illustrative only and not in any way limiting. Other embodiments of the invention will readily suggest themselves to such skilled persons having the benefit of this disclosure.

[0011] Referring to FIGS. 1-3, an exemplary rubber railroad tie 10 is illustrated. The rubber railroad tie 10 includes a body 12 of rubber tire byproduct configured as multiple layers of rubber tires 14 stacked into a stratified structure 16. The multiple layers 14 can comprise strips of tires 18, formed by cutting, or otherwise processing tires, into lengths or strips, and the like. The stratified structure 16 can be a mesh structure of interwoven tire lengths or strips. The stratified structure 16 can comprise strips of tire alternatively aligned in parallel, orthogonal patterns as well as diagonally aligned patterns and any combination of orthogonal, parallel and diagonal patterns. The strips of tire 18 can be bound together by a binding material 20. The binding material 18 can be an adhesive material, bonding agents, thermally bonded, mechanically bonded and the like. In another embodiment, the bonding material 18 can be combined with a tie plate 20 and fasteners 22, such as studs or threaded blots, and the like. The multiple layers 12 can be held between the tie plate 20 and fasteners 22. The tie plate 20 can extend the full length of the rubber railroad tie 10. Multiple tie plates 20 can be utilized, that extend partially along the length or width of the rubber railroad tie 10. The exemplary embodiment shown in FIG. 1 has two sets of tie plates 20 held fast with fasteners 22 at opposite ends of the rubber railroad tie 10.

[0012] Referring to FIG. 2, another embodiment of the rubber railroad tie 10 is illustrated. A reinforcement member 24 can be disposed into the stratified structure 14 to provide rigid properties. The reinforcement member 24 can comprise steel bars such as rebar, composite elongated structures, poles, rods, pipe, cord, mesh, and the like, that provide both tensile strength and rigidity. The reinforcement members 24 can be placed in various locations throughout the stratified structure 14 to provide material structural strength. A rail fastener 26 can be included to provide support for a railroad rail (not shown). The rail fastener 26 can be integrally manufactured into the stratified structure 14. In another embodiment, the rail fastener 26 can be held fast to the stratified structure with the tie plate 20 and fasteners 22.

[0013] Referring to FIG. 4, an alternative embodiment of the rubber railroad tie 100 is shown. The alternative rubber railroad tie 100 can be a body 112 fabricated from rubber tire byproduct in the form of crumb rubber formed into a slurry and then poured into molds from dies of a railroad tie. The crumb rubber can be chopped and processed rubber tires. The slurry can include bonding agents and other additives that form the body 112 configured into an integral rigid and durable shape of the rubber railroad tie 100. A tie plate 120 and fasteners 122 can be coupled to the body 112 to provide support for sets of rail fasteners 126. Reinforcement members 124 can also be disposed in the body 112 of the rubber railroad tie 100 to provide rigidity and tensile strength. In another embodiment, the rail fastener 126 can be integral with the crumb rubber material of the rubber railroad tie 100.

[0014] All of the railroad ties discussed can be coated with a coating 128 comprising protective materials to improve durability and resistance to wear. The coating 128 can comprise ceramic, metal, polymers, and paints and the like to cover and protect the rubber railroad tie from environmental wear, as well as to provide additional material strength and rigidity.

[0015] While embodiments and applications of this invention have been shown and described, it would be apparent to those skilled in the art that many more modifications than mentioned above are possible without departing from the inventive concepts herein. The invention, therefore, is not to be restricted except in the spirit of the appended claims.