Title:
ORBITAL VIBRATING HAND TROWEL
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The orbital vibrating hand trowel has a body with first and second opposite ends and a handle between the ends for grasping. The body houses a motor and power source. An eccentric mass is connected to the motor. An adapter body is connected to a float body. The adapter body has an aperture for housing the eccentric mass such that rotation of the eccentric mass within the aperture of the adaptor body moves and vibrates the adaptor body and attached float body in an orbital path along a horizontal plane with respect to the float body for finishing a surface.



Inventors:
Sager, Ronald Lee (Reinbeck, IA, US)
Application Number:
11/466331
Publication Date:
02/28/2008
Filing Date:
08/22/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
15/235.4, 404/114
International Classes:
E01C19/22
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
ADDIE, RAYMOND W
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
MCKEE, VOORHEES & SEASE, P.L.C. (DES MOINES, IA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An orbital vibrating hand trowel, comprising: a body having a first and second opposite end and a handle between the ends for grasping; a motor and power source within the body, the power source in electrical communication with the motor; an eccentric mass connected to the motor; an adapter body connected to a float body, the adapter body having an aperture for housing the eccentric mass; and, the eccentric mass rotating within the aperture of the adaptor body to move and vibrate the adaptor body and attached float body in an orbital path along a horizontal plane with respect to the float body for finishing a work surface.

2. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the handle having a switch positioned thereon for switching power on and off from the power source to the motor.

3. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the power source positioned within the handle is a rechargeable power source.

4. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the handle having a DC connection positioned thereon for communicating power to the power source for recharging the power source.

5. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein rotation of the eccentric mass within the aperture thereby affecting translation of the float body along the orbital path.

6. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein rotation of the eccentric mass thereby affecting vibration of the float body along the horizontal plane with respect to the float body.

7. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the diameter of the aperture in the adaptor body is approximately the diameter of the eccentric mass.

8. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the aperture in the adaptor body having a collar for securing the eccentric mass within the aperture.

9. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the eccentric mass having a dimensional center and an aperture positioned off center of the dimensional center for connecting to a shaft on the motor.

10. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the eccentric mass is removably attached to the shaft of the motor.

11. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the diameter of the aperture in the adaptor body varies to accommodate variation in the diameter of the eccentric mass.

12. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the adaptor body having at least one pilot hole for securing the float body to the adaptor body using a screw.

13. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the float and adaptor bodies follow the translation of the eccentric mass along the orbital pathway.

14. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the first end of the body housing the motor therein.

15. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 1 wherein the second end of the body having a spacer connected thereto, the spacer being connected to the float body.

16. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 15 wherein the spacer having at least one pilot hole for securing the spacer to the second end of the body.

17. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 16 wherein the spacer and the adaptor body having the same thickness.

18. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 17 wherein the spacer having at least one screw for connecting the spacer to the float body.

19. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 18 wherein the float body having a first and second opposite end and an elevated rib running the length of the float body, the first end being connected to the adaptor body and the second opposite end being connected to the spacer.

20. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 19 wherein the float body being pivotable about the spacer on the second end to thereby assist orbital translation and vibration of the float body about the first end.

21. An orbital vibrating hand trowel, comprising: a body housing a motor having a shaft; an eccentric mass adapted for connection to the shaft; an aperture within an adaptor body defined by an aperture wall, the aperture housing the eccentric mass and the adaptor body being attached to a float body; and the eccentric mass elliptically orbiting within the aperture about the shaft and against the aperture wall thereby affecting orbital translation and vibration of the attached float body for finishing a work surface.

22. An orbital vibrating hand trowel for finishing a work surface, the trowel comprising: a body for gripping and housing a motor; an adaptor body having an aperture defined by an aperture wall, the adaptor body being adapted for attachment to a float body; and an eccentric mass connected to the motor and received within the aperture, the eccentric mass contacting the aperture wall thereby affecting orbital translation and vibration of the float for finishing the work surface.

23. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 22 wherein the motor is a high-speed motor with high-speed bearings.

24. The orbital vibrating hand trowel of claim 23 wherein the aperture wall is a high-speed bearing for minimizing the stress on the shaft and the motor as well as the friction between the eccentric mass and aperture wall during orbital translation of the eccentric mass.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

It is widely known that a hand trowel is a flat-bladed tool with a handle and flat metal blade, used by masons and others for leveling, spreading, or shaping substances such as cement, plaster, or mortar. Also appreciated is the fact that the work output required by the user finishing a work surface with a hand trowel is decreased significantly if some other additional energy input is provided on the trowel, such as a vibration or a sonic energy generator. It is also agreed upon that vibration and/or sonic energy added to a hand trowel makes the trowel increasingly efficient over those trowels where the user alone provides the only work input. Thus, the trend in hand trowel construction is to increase the efficiency of the hand trowel and decrease the work input required by the user by increasing the work input to the hand trowel using an alternative energy source.

Therefore, what is needed is an orbital vibrating hand trowel that combines the use of vibration energy with the orbital movement of the trowel for quickly and efficiently finishing a work surface, while demanding less physical input by the user.

Another purpose of the present invention is to provide an apparatus that is inexpensive to manufacture, easy to use, free from electrical cords (cordless), rechargeable and capable of being fitted to various sized and operational float bodies, as well as significantly reducing the physical work input provided by the user and time requirement to finish a surface.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore it is a primary object, feature, or advantage of the present invention to improve over the state of the art.

It is a further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention to provide a hand trowel that is comfortable to operate.

It is a still further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel that does not fatigue the user.

Another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention to provide a hand trowel that is adaptable to accommodate a float body of various sizes and applications.

Yet another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention to provide a hand trowel that uses orbital translation in combination with vibration of the float for efficiently finishing a work surface.

A further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention to provide a hand trowel for finishing off cement.

It is a further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention to provide a hand trowel for finishing off a plaster surface.

Another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel for finishing off mortar.

Yet another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide hand trowel wherein the electrical components are encased in the handle for protection from the work environment.

A still further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the motor and electrical leads from the battery and/or switch to the motor are quickly accessible.

Another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein a switch for selectively applying power to the motor is operatively located on the handle.

Yet another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the battery is a replaceable, chargeable NiCad battery.

A further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the battery encased in the handle is chargeable using a DC connector operatively positioned on the handle.

Another object, feature or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the motor is positioned in the handle and is replaceable without undue labor and time involvement.

Yet another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein an eccentric mass is attached to the shaft of the motor.

A still further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein a housing having an aperture for receiving the eccentric mass is attached to the float.

Another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the diameter of the aperture in the housing is approximately the diameter of the eccentric mass.

Still another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the motor is a high-speed motor with high-speed bearings.

Yet another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein slack between the sidewall of the aperture and the eccentric mass allows for rotation of the eccentric mass with the aperture.

A still further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein rotation of the eccentric mass within the aperture affects orbital translation of the float.

Another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel that is collapsible for cleaning, storing, repairing and maintaining.

Yet another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the eccentric mass has an aperture for receiving and attaching to the shaft of the motor.

Still another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the aperture for housing the eccentric mass is fitted with a high-speed bearing to facilitate transfer of orbital movement and vibration from the eccentric mass to the float body.

A still further object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the aperture in the eccentric mass is off-center for producing vibration and an orbital movement during rotation of the eccentric mass.

Another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein off-center rotational movement of the eccentric mass within the aperture in the housing causes the housing to vibrate and translate in an orbital pattern which in-turn is transferred to the float body thereby providing vibration and orbital translation of the float body in a plane parallel to the float body.

Yet another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the eccentric mass has a first stage having a first diameter and a second stage having and second diameter and the second diameter being larger than the first diameter for driving the adaptor body about an orbital pathway.

Still another object, feature, or advantage of the present invention is to provide a hand trowel wherein the shaft from the motor is supported by a high-speed bearing to facilitate rotation of the shaft and the attached eccentric mass.

According to one aspect of the present invention an orbital vibrating hand trowel, is disclosed. The trowel has a body having a first and second opposite end and a handle between the ends for grasping. The trowel also includes a motor and power source within the body. The power source is in electrical communication with the motor. An eccentric mass is connected to the motor and an adapter body is connected to a float body. The adapter body has an aperture for housing the eccentric mass. The eccentric mass rotates within the aperture of the adaptor body to move and vibrate the adaptor body and attached float body in an orbital path along a horizontal plane with respect to the float body for finishing a work surface.

According to another feature of the present invention, the handle having a switch positioned thereon for switching power on and off from the power source to the motor.

According to another feature of the present invention, the power source positioned within the handle is a rechargeable power source.

According to another feature of the present invention, the handle having a DC connection positioned thereon for communicating power to the power source for recharging the power source.

According to another feature of the present invention, rotation of the eccentric mass thereby affects translation of the float body along the orbital path.

According to another feature of the present invention, rotation of the eccentric mass thereby affects vibration of the float body along the horizontal plane with respect to the float body.

According to another feature of the present invention, the diameter of the aperture in the adaptor body is approximately the diameter of the eccentric mass.

According to another feature of the present invention, the aperture in the adaptor body having a collar for securing the eccentric mass within the aperture.

According to another feature of the present invention, the eccentric mass having a dimensional center and an aperture positioned off center of the dimensional center for connecting to a shaft on the motor.

According to another feature of the present invention, the eccentric mass is removably attached to the shaft of the motor.

According to another feature of the present invention, the diameter of the aperture in the adaptor body varies to accommodate variation in the diameter of the eccentric mass.

According to another feature of the present invention, the adaptor body having at least one pilot hole for securing the float body to the adaptor body using a screw.

According to another feature of the present invention, the float and adaptor body follows the lateral translation of the eccentric mass along the orbital pathway.

According to another feature of the present invention, the first end of the body housing the motor therein.

According to another feature of the present invention, the second end of the body having a spacer connected thereto, the spacer being connected to the float body.

According to another feature of the present invention, the spacer having at least one pilot hole for securing the spacer to the second end of the body.

According to another feature of the present invention, the spacer and the adaptor body having the same thickness.

According to another feature of the present invention, the spacer having at least one screw for connecting the spacer to the float body.

According to another feature of the present invention, the float body having a first and second opposite end and an elevated rib running the length of the float body, the first end being connected to the adaptor body and the second opposite end being connected to the spacer.

According to another feature of the present invention, the float body being pivotable about the spacer on the second end to thereby assist orbital translation and vibration of the float body about the first end.

According to another aspect of the present invention, an orbital vibrating hand trowel, is disclosed. The trowel has a motor within a handle. The trowel includes an eccentric mass connected to the motor and an aperture within an adaptor body attached to a float body. The aperture is for housing the eccentric mass. Rotation of the eccentric mass within the aperture affects orbital translation and vibration of the attached float body for finishing a work surface.

According to another aspect of the present invention, an orbital vibrating hand trowel for finishing a work surface, is disclosed. The trowel has a body for gripping and housing a motor. The trowel includes a housing having an aperture and adapted for attachment to a float body. An eccentric mass is connected to the motor and received within the aperture for affecting orbital translation and vibration of the float for finishing the work surface.

One or more of these and/or other objects, features, or advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the specification and claims that follow.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is an isometric view of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view of the present invention taken along line 2-2 of the isometric view in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is an exploded cross-sectional view of the housing and eccentric mass of the present invention taken along line 3-3 in FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is an exploded plan view of the housing and eccentric mass of the present invention taken along line 3-3 in FIG. 2.

FIG. 5 is a top plan view of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

The present invention includes a number of aspects all of which have broad and far-reaching application. Although specific embodiments are described herein, the present invention is not to be limited to these specific embodiments.

FIG. 1 is an isometric view of the present invention. In FIG. 1, one embodiment of the trowel 10 is shown as having generally a body 12 having a first end 14 and a second opposite end 16 and handle 18 extending between the two ends 14, 16 for gripping. The first end 14 of the body 12 further comprises a motor cap 20 providing quick access and protection for a motor positioned within the body 12. The second end of the body 12 has pilot holes 17 allowing passage of a screw for attaching the body 12 to the spacer 24. The spacer 24 is in-turn connected to the float body 30. The body 12 also comprises a switch 26 for selectively providing power to a motor. Also included on the body 12 is a DC connector 28 for charging or providing power to a power source housed within the body 12. An adaptor body 22 is connected to the first end 14 of the body 12. In addition, the adaptor body 22 is attached to the float body 30. Both the spacer 24 and the adaptor body 22 may be separate pieces or part of the body 12. The float body 30 has a first end 32 and an opposite second end 34 and an elevated rib 36 running between the ends 32, 34 for connecting to the body 12. The float body 30 is preferably a float for finishing a surface consisting of a workable material, such as concrete or plaster. The float body 30 may be of different shapes and sizes thereby accommodating different tasks. The float body 30 may be interchangeable. It is preferred that the spacer 24 on the second end 16 of the body 12 and the adaptor body 22 on the first end 14 of the body 12 are of equal thickness. However, the spacer 24 and adaptor body 22 may have a different thickness to accommodate manufacturing and application needs. Furthermore, the thickness of the spacer 24 and adaptor body 22 may be varied jointly or separately to accommodate a different size and shape float body 30. The thickness of the spacer 24 and the adaptor body 22 may also be varied to change the pitch of the handle 18 on the body 12 with respect to the float body 30. Both the adaptor body 22 end the spacer 24 are attached to the float body 30 along the elevated rib 36. It is preferred that the body 12 be constructed of a high impact material capable of protecting the device from the abuse commonly associated with commercial grade tools. Additionally, it is preferred that the body 12 of the trowel 10 be constructed of a material that is easy to grip and non-fatiguing.

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view of the present invention taken along line 2-2 of the isometric view in FIG. 1. In FIG. 2, one embodiment of the trowel 10 is shown as having a body 12. Within the body 12 is a power source 19. It is preferred that the power source be a rechargeable NiCad battery or any other power source which permits stand-alone operation of the trowel 10, where stand-alone operation means without a power cord being attached. Thus, any power source that is rechargeable, durable and provides stand-alone operation of the trowel is suitable as a power source. The power source 19 is in electrical communication with the motor 15 positioned in the first end 14 of the body 12. The motor is preferably a commercial or industrial grade motor. The motor also should be a high-speed motor with high-speed bearings suitable for the wears of use in a commercial or industrial setting. The motor is preferably a sealed motor if exposed to work elements, but may have an impervious casing if protected within the body of the trowel. The power source 19 is also in electrical communication with the switch 26 for selectively providing power from the power source 19 to the motor 15. The switch 26 may be a variable power switch for varying the speed of the motor 15 and subsequently the orbital rotation and vibration of the float body 30. The switch 26 may be lockable to permit sustained operation of the trowel 10 without having to depress or continually hold the switch in the on position. The power source 19 and the motor 15 are encased within the body 12 and protected from being interrogated by elements external to the trowel 10. The power source 19 and the motor 15 are both accessible within the body 12. By removing the motor cap 20 electrical communication to motor 15 from the switch 26 and the power source 19 can be verified and remedied. The body 12 of the trowel 10 may be a single piece or a multi-piece body thereby permitting easy access to the internal workings of the trowel 10. The second end 16 of the body 12 comprises pilot holes 17 for inserting a screw 25 for securing the spacer 24 to the body 12. An additional pilot hole 17 is placed within the spacer 24 for securing the float body 30 to the spacer 24 using a screw 25. The pilot hole 17 within the spacer is intentionally oversized with respect to the size of the screw 25 so as to allow transitional movement of the float body 30 with respect to the spacer 24 while yet keeping the float body 30 attached to the spacer 24. Thus, as the first end 32 of the float body 30 is translated along an orbital pathway, the second end 34 translates in reciprocating fashion along the same axis of the body 12 and about the oversized pilot hole 17 in the spacer 24. The spacer may be constructed of numerous materials and in numerous ways. It is preferred that the attachment used to affix the body 12 of the trowel 10 to the float body 30 be rigid and strong yet permit translation of the float body 30 forward and backwards with respect to a line of axis collinear with the length of the body 12.

Also illustrated by FIG. 2 is the first end 14 of the body 12 that houses the motor 15. The motor has a shaft 21 extending downward toward the float body 30 and an eccentric mass 23 attached thereto. The eccentric mass 23 is housed within the aperture 38 in the adaptor body 22. high-speed bearing may be used to the form the inner liner of the aperture 38 to ease the stress on the motor 15 and friction on the eccentric mass 23, as well as increase the efficiency of the trowel 10. Using a high-speed bearing to form the aperture 38 would also diminish the amount of wear and tear on the eccentric mass 23 gyrating within the aperture 38. The diameter of the aperture 38 in the adaptor body 22 is approximately the diameter of the eccentric mass 23, where the eccentric mass has two different stages; the first stage 52 having a first diameter 54 and the second stage 56 having a second diameter 58. The difference between the diameters of the eccentric mass 23 and the aperture 38 within the adaptor body 22 is sufficient to allow rotational movement of the eccentric mass 23 within the aperture 38. The adaptor body 22 has also a collar 40 for retaining the eccentric mass 23 within the aperture 38, as best shown by FIG. 3. Also within the adaptor body 22 are pilot holes 17. Screws 25 are placed within pilot holes 17 for securing the adaptor body 22 to the float body 30. The eccentric mass 23 is preferably attached to the shaft 21 of the motor using set screw 48, but may be attached using a keyway and key, or simply by a press-fit.

FIG. 3 is an exploded cross-sectional view of the housing and eccentric mass of the present invention taken along line 3-3 in FIG. 2. Similarly, FIG. 4 is an exploded plan view of one embodiment of the housing and eccentric mass of the present invention taken along line 3-3 in FIG. 2. Both FIG. 3 and FIG. 4 illustrate how rotation of the eccentric mass 23 within the aperture 38 in the adaptor body 22 effects orbital translation and vibration of the float body 30. In particular, the motor 15 rotates shaft 21 having the eccentric mass 23 attached thereto, using set screw 48. The eccentric mass 23 is attached to the shaft 21 by inserting the shaft 21 of the motor 15 into the aperture 42 within the eccentric mass 23. The aperture 42 in the eccentric mass 23 has an offset center 46 from the actual or true dimensional center 44 of the eccentric mass 23, as best illustrated by FIG. 4. The center offset 46 of the aperture 42 within the eccentric mass 23 affects orbital movement of the eccentric mass 23 about the true or actual dimensional center 44 of the eccentric mass 23. Movement of the adaptor body 22 and the attached float body 30 occurs as the eccentric mass 23 rotates orbitally keeping the outer periphery 50 of the second stage 56 of the eccentric mass 23 in continuous contact with the aperture wall 60 thereby pushing the adaptor body 22 radially outward along the rotating orbital point of contact between the aperture wall 60 and the outer periphery 50 of the second stage 56 of the eccentric mass 23. Thus, the rotation of the eccentric mass 23 within the aperture 38 effects translation of the adaptor body 22 along an orbital path. Additionally, the rotation of the eccentric mass 23 induces a vibration into the adaptor body 22 attached to the float body 30. Thus, when a user activates the motor 15 using the switch 26 the eccentric mass 23 begins to rotate within the aperture 38 thereby effecting orbital translation and vibration of the adaptor body 22. The orbital translation and vibration of the adaptor body 22 attached to the float body 30 effects orbital translation and vibration of the float body 30, as the adaptor body 22 is attached to the float body 30.

FIG. 5 is a top plan view of the present invention. In FIG. 5, the orbital vibration and translation of the float body is illustrated. The movement of the rotation of the eccentric mass 23 within the aperture 38 in the adaptor body 22 causes the float body 30 to translate in an orbital manner about the actual or true dimensional center 44 of the eccentric mass 23. The float body 30 is permitted to translate back and forth with respect to the body 12 and along a line of axis that is collinear with the length of the body 12. Additionally, by offsetting the aperture 42 from the actual or true dimensional center 44 causes a vibration to resonate from the eccentric mass 23 into the float body 30. Thus, the combination of the orbital translation of the float body 30 as well as the vibration introduced in the float body 30 allows the user to efficiently and quickly close off or finish a surface of workable material such as cement, plaster, mortar, or any other shapeable, spreadable, or levelable substance.

The present invention contemplates numerous other options in the design and use of the trowel.

These and/or other options, variations, are all within the spirit and scope of the invention.





 
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