Title:
Shaft rod for a heald shaft
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The shaft rod in accordance with the invention consists of only one (steel) metal sheet which is essentially configured without a large hollow chamber. The metal sheet has two stiffening means which are preferably located at the top and at the bottom of the shaft rod and are configured as edges. Preferably, the upper stiffening means (10) is implemented in the configuration of a small hollow chamber or of a solid reinforcement. The lower stiffening means (11) is implemented by attaching the heald support rail. Attachment may occur in accordance with any joining method, such as, for example, welding, cementing, clinching. The shaft rod may be manufactured by shape-rolling or roll-forming, as well as by all other reforming processes that are suitable for metal sheets. It is preferred that the heald support rail be directly integrated in the sheet metal form of the shaft rod. As a result, the entire shaft rod consists of a single metal sheet.



Inventors:
Bruske, Johannes (Albstadt, DE)
Cebulla, Holger (Ingolstadt, DE)
Drope, Stefan (Albstadt, DE)
Pfeffer, Bernd (Haigerloch, DE)
Application Number:
12/000127
Publication Date:
06/12/2008
Filing Date:
12/10/2007
Assignee:
Groz-Beckert KG (Albstadt, DE)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
D03C9/06
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
MUROMOTO JR, ROBERT H
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
FITCH, EVEN, TABIN & FLANNERY, LLP (Chicago, IL, US)
Claims:
1. A shaft rod (2, 3) for a heald shaft, comprising: a shaft body (8) having a single, longitudinally continuous sheet metal component (9) with an upper edge (10) extending in longitudinal direction and a lower edge (11) extending in longitudinal direction, whereby, between said edges a flat central section (12) without a hollow chamber is formed.

2. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 1, characterized in that the central section (12) without a hollow chamber has only one single wall.

3. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 2, characterized in that the wall extends from the upper edge (10) to the lower edge (11).

4. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 1, characterized in that the upper edge (10) is formed by a stiffening means (16).

5. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 4, characterized in that the stiffening means (16) extends over the entire length of the shaft rod (2).

6. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 6, characterized in that the stiffening means (16) is a hollow chamber (10).

7. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 6, characterized in that the hollow chamber (10) is formed by an angled section of the sheet metal component (9).

8. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 4, characterized in that the stiffening means (16) is formed by a solid stiffening rod (42) which is connected to the sheet metal component (9).

9. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 1, characterized in that a lower stiffening means (14, 15, 38) is provided on the lower edge.

10. A shaft rod in accordance with claim 1, characterized in that the lower stiffening means (14, 15, 38) consists at least in part of a heald support rail (14, 38).

11. Shaft rod in accordance with claim 10, characterized in that the heald support rail (14, 38) is a bent sheet metal component.

12. Shaft rod in accordance with claim 1, characterized in that the connectors (17, 18) for the lateral supports (4, 5) are provided on the ends of the rod body (8).

13. Shaft rod in accordance with claim 12, characterized in that the connectors (17, 18) are formed by sheet metal tabs (19, 34) which extend at least in part over the central section (12).

14. Shaft rod in accordance with claim 13, characterized in that each of the sheet metal tabs (19, 34) forms pockets (24) which are open on two sides.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the priority under 35 U.S.C 119 of German Patent application No. 10 2006 057 833.3 filed Dec. 8, 2006, the subject matter of which, in its entirety, is incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The invention relates to a shaft rod, in particular, for a heald shaft of a weaving machine that does not run too rapidly.

In the interest of providing cost-effective weaving machines, it has been an objective to manufacture shaft rods in a cost-effective manner. Nowadays, shaft rods usually consist of light-metal hollow-chamber profiles in order to achieve great stiffness with low weight. To achieve this, the expense and effort required for the manufacture of shaft rods is usually in most cases relatively high.

For example, U.S. Pat. No. 4,633,916 discloses a shaft rod that consists of several metal profiles, which define between them a hollow chamber having a rectangular cross-section, said chamber being filled with honeycombs. In addition, a stiffening profile is provided on one narrow side of this hollow chamber. The parts are cemented to each other.

Furthermore, the manufacture of roll-formed sheet metal components was given consideration. Regarding this, U.S. Pat. No. 4,508,145 discloses a shaft rod having a roll-formed sheet metal profile with a sheet metal profile having a U-shaped cross-section, whereby its limbs are connected to a support rail carrier. The other end of the support rail carrier holds the heald support rail for the accommodation of the healds.

In this case, in particular the connection side between the heald support rail carrier and the U-shaped sheet metal profile may represent a weak point.

As opposed to this, in earlier times, development lines were pursued that were later abandoned. For example, Switzerland patent document No. CH 464 112 shows a shaft rod that is completely configured as a bent sheet metal component, in that a sheet metal strip is first transformed into a U-shape, whereupon one of the two limbs is offset relative to the other, so that it rests in a flat manner on said limb. The two superimposed limbs are again bent in a U-shaped manner so that, on the one hand, a hook-shaped form is obtained for the accommodation of the heald end eyes and, on the other hand, a hollow chamber stiffening the shaft rod is formed.

In most instances, the edge that acts to accommodate the healds is not able to meet the resultant requirements. In addition, such shaft rods exhibit limited stiffness and considerable weight.

Switzerland patent document No. CH 286 827 also discloses a shaft rod that consists of two parts of bent sheet metal, said rod being formed by two mirror-symmetrical bent sheet metal components that are connected to each other. A hollow chamber profile with two edge-sides and one large central hollow chamber is obtained. Overall, such a shaft rod is relatively heavy.

Finally, Austrian patent document No. AT 180240 discloses a shaft rod that consists of a single bent sheet metal component. Each of its ends is folded to form edges having T-shaped profiles, while the central part is configured in the form of a corrugated metal sheet with longitudinally extending corrugations.

Such a shaft rod does not meet the stiffness requirements of current demands.

Considering this, it is the object of the invention to provide a shaft rod for a heald shaft which can be manufactured in a simple and cost-effective manner and which exhibits great stiffness.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The above object generally is achieved with the shaft rod in accordance with the invention which comprises a shaft body having a single, longitudinally continuous sheet metal component with an upper edge extending in a longitudinal direction and a lower edge extending in the longitudinal direction, wherein a flat central section without a hollow chamber is formed between the edges.

The shaft rod in accordance with the invention comprises a shaft body which exhibits the desired inherent stiffness under flexure. It consists of a single longitudinally continuous sheet metal component with an upper, longitudinally extending edge and a lower, also longitudinally extending edge. Between the edges, the bent sheet metal component has a flat central section without hollow chamber, said section—in conjunction with the edges—imparting the rod body with the desired stiffness. The flat central section without hollow chamber holds the upper edge and the lower edge of the rod body at defined distance relative to each other. At relatively low weight, this results in an improved stiffness of the shaft rod, compared with prior-art shaft rods that consist of a single piece of sheet metal.

In addition, the central section without hollow chamber results in relatively minimal material volume, and thus a particularly simple design that still exhibits a relatively low weight is achieved.

Basically, it is possible for the central section without hollow chamber to consist, for example, of two flat superimposed walls that are connected to each other, either continuously or in sections. The connection may be achieved by cementing the surfaces together, by riveting, by spot-welding or line-welding, or by similar measures. Preferably, the central section without hollow chamber, however, only consists of a single wall displaying sufficient thickness.

Preferably, the wall extends—without interruptions—from the upper edge to the lower edge. By avoiding openings and cutouts in the edges, as well as in the wall, a relatively high load-carrying capacity can be achieved.

The upper edge is formed by a stiffening means which preferably extends, without interruptions, along the entire length of the shaft rod. The stiffening means may be represented by a hollow chamber that is formed by the sheet metal component of the rod body. The hollow chamber may be closed by a continuous weld seam extending over the entire stiffening means or, optionally, it may also be closed by other means. An uninterrupted weld seam extending over the entire length results in high stability.

Alternatively, the stiffening means may be made of a solid rod which is connected to the sheet metal component. The rod may consists of a metal or also, e.g., of a fiber-reinforced, plastic material. For connection, weld joints or cemented joints may be used, depending on the selected material.

Preferably an additional stiffening means is provided on the lower edge, whereby said stiffening means may be, e.g., the heald support rail. In the simplest case, the heald support rail may be a bent edge of the bent sheet metal component. Alternatively, a heald support rail of bent sheet metal may be welded to the sheet metal component or may be connected thereto by other measures. This provides the options of choosing different types of steel for the heald support rail and the bent sheet metal component and of selecting different material thicknesses, and offers other degrees of freedom regarding design.

To this extent, the rod body is a sheet metal component which, for example, can be manufactured by roll-forming, or can also be produced by folding a cut sheet metal strip. Preferably, this sheet metal component is provided on its ends with connecting means for lateral supports. These connecting means may preferably not require larger openings in the sheet metal component. Additional sheet metal components that, e.g., form a pocket with an open end, are provided as connecting means. In so doing, each pocket is preferably open on two opposite sides. Corner pieces provided on the lateral supports may be inserted in these pockets and clamped in place in said pockets by means of a set screw. If the pockets are also open on their end away from the rod end, the end piece may extend around one edge of the pocket and thus create a positive-locking pull-out protection. It is also possible to close the pockets on their ends away from the rod end.

Additional details of advantageous embodiments of the invention are obvious from the drawings, the description and the claims. The descriptions of the individual figures of the drawings are used to explain essential aspects of the invention and other situations. Not expressly described details are obvious from the drawings to persons skilled in the art, said drawings supplementing the description.

The drawings are not true to scale and depict details of the shaft rod in different sizes.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a full view of a heald shaft.

FIG. 2 is a schematic, abbreviated, lateral view of a shaft rod of the heald shaft in accordance with FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a frontal view of the shaft rod in accordance with FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a frontal view of a modified embodiment of the shaft rod.

FIG. 5 is a frontal view of a tab of the shaft rod in accordance with FIG. 3 in order to form an attachment pocket.

FIG. 6 is a frontal view of a tab in accordance with FIG. 4 in order to form an attachment pocket.

FIGS. 7 through 10 illustrate frontal views of various alternative embodiments of the shaft rod.

FIG. 11 is a sectional side view of a detail of a corner of the heald shaft in accordance with FIG. 1, and of the connecting means provided there.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 shows a heald shaft comprising an upper shaft rod 2, a lower shaft rod 3 and lateral supports 4, 5. The shaft rods 2,3 and the lateral supports 4, 5 are connected to each other to form a rectangular frame which, during operation, is vertically moved up and down by drive means that are not specifically illustrated here. Said frame supports healds 6 in order to guide warp threads in a weaving machine. Seated on the shaft rods 2, 3 are guides 7 that consist, e.g., of wood, in order to keep a distance from adjacent heald shafts. Alternatively, the guides 7 may be replaced by other means.

Basically, the shaft rods 2, 3 correspond to each other, so that the following description of the shaft rod 2 applies analogously to the shaft rod 3.

The shaft rod 2 comprises a rod body 8 which is essentially made of a sheet metal component 9. The sheet metal component 9, for example, is shown separately in FIG. 9. It may be a component that has been produced by a roll-forming process. This component has a constant cross-section in longitudinal direction. In FIG. 2, the longitudinal direction extends horizontally to the projection plane, and, in FIG. 9, it extends perpendicularly to the projection plane. The sheet metal component 9 is provided with an upper edge 10 and a lower edge 11, which, between them, define a preferably completely—at least, however, largely—flat central section 12. The central section 12, which is preferably uninterrupted, i.e., preferably does not have any substantial openings, thus connects the upper edge 10 and the lower edge 11 in one piece and rigidly to each other. The upper edge 10 is formed by a hollow profile that is formed by bending the upper edge section of the sheet metal component 9. The hollow chamber may have a square, rectangular, round or similar cross-section. It terminates at a sheet metal limb 13 which arranged flat on a part of the central section 12 and may be connected there—by means on adhesive or by means of one or more weld seams—with the central section 12. Preferably, continuous weld seams are provided for connection along the entire length of the edge 10. These may be laser weld seams.

The lower edge 11 is preferably formed by an angled region of the sheet metal component 9. In addition, it supports a heald support rail 14 that may be configured as a solid steel profile having a rectangular cross-section, a rounded cross-section on its narrow sides, an L-shaped cross-section or a similar cross-section. From the flat central section 12 extends a limb 15 which is angled twice by 90°, respectively, however, in opposite directions. It supports the heald support rail 14 in a plane that is parallel to the central section 12, however, at a distance therefrom. The limb 15 and the heald support rail 14 are connected to each other, for example, by weld spots or weld seams, or by a single long continuous weld seam. The heald support rail 14 contributes to the stiffening of the rod body 8. While the heald support rail 14 and the limb 15 thus, together, form the lower edge 11 of the rod body 8 and thus a lower stiffening means, the upper hollow chamber defined by the edge 10 forms a stiffening means 16 for the upper edge of the shaft body 8.

In order to connect the lateral supports 4, 5, the shaft rod 2 is provided with connectors 17, 18, as are shown in FIG. 2. Each of the connectors 17, 18 is essentially the same. Therefore, the subsequent description of the connector 17 also applies analogously to the connector 18.

In order to produce the connector 17, a sheet metal tab 19 is provided, which, as is shown in connection with the metal component 9 in FIG. 3 and separately in FIG. 5. The sheet metal tab 19 preferably consists of a bent sheet metal strip having a flat section 20 and an angled edge 21. It consists of a first limb 22, which extends, in a first direction, at a right angle away from the section 20, and of a second limb, which extends, in a different direction, at a right angle in order to again extend parallel to the section 20. As is shown by FIGS. 2 and 3, this sheet metal tab is set onto the sheet metal component 9. The limb 23 is connected to the central section 12 of the sheet metal component 9, for example, by cementing or by welding.

The section 20 of the sheet metal tab 19 abuts against the upper edge 10 of the sheet metal component 9 and is again connected to the sheet metal component 9 at that point. In this manner, as is obvious from FIG. 3, a pocket 24 that has an essentially rectangular cross-section is formed, said pocket being open on the front end 25 of the sheet metal component 9. Said pocket has a constant cross-section in longitudinal direction and is preferably also open on the opposite side 26, as is indicated in FIG. 2. FIG. 11 explains the connection of the lateral support 5. Said lateral support may also be configured as a bent sheet metal component and may support, on its end, a corner piece 27. The corner piece 27, for example, may be disposed to be pivotable about a pivot axis 28 and be supported on the lateral support 5. Said corner piece has a cross section that fits the pocket 24 and is inserted into said pocket. Preferably, the length of said corner piece is slightly greater than the width of the sheet metal tab 19, so that said corner piece projects from said pocket's open side 26. There, the end piece 27 may be provided with a step 29 that extends back around the edge of the sheet metal tab 19 at the limb 22. In so doing, the limb 22 is opposite the narrow side of the pocket 24 and the edge 10.

A small opening may pass through the edge 10, through which opening extends a set screw 30. This screw may be screwed into a tapped hole of a clamping element 31 that is seated in the hollow chamber enclosed by the edge 10. The end of the set screw 30 projects into the pocket 24 and is supported on a narrow side of the end piece 27. In so doing, said set screw presses the corner piece 27 against the limb 22, thus securing it in the pocket 24. The step 29 prevents the corner piece 27 from being forcibly pulled out of the pocket 24, in particular, when the set screw 30 has not been fully tightened.

Considering the embodiment described so far, a series of modifications are possible. A few of them will be described hereinafter:

As illustrated by FIG. 7, the heald support rail 14 may also be a part of the sheet metal component 8, in that said rail is configured as a part of the lower edge 11. Adjoining the limb 15—again, in the same direction—there preferably is a limb 32 bent at a right angle, whereby said limb 32 may again have on its end a narrow folded-back edge 33. The upper edge 10 may be configured as described previously. As shown by FIG. 4, the connection 17 may then be a sheet metal tab 34, as is separately shown in FIG. 6. To the extent, that said tab corresponds to the previously described sheet metal tab 19, reference is made to the previous description, whereby the same reference numbers apply. Different from this description, the section 20 is provided with a bent edge 35 on the lower side as well as on the upper side, said edge having the limbs 36, 37 that preferably extend at a right angle with respect to each other. The limbs 23, 37 are located in joint plane.

The sheet metal tab 34 may be set on the central section 12 of the sheet metal component 9, whereby the limbs 23, 37 are connected to the central section 12. Adhesive spots, weld spots or weld seams may be used for connection. Furthermore, rivets or the like may be provided. Again, a pocket 24 is formed, to which a lateral support 5 may be connected as described above.

Several modifications of the sheet metal component 9 are possible. For example, the lower edge 11 may only be formed by an attached sheet metal profile 38, as is shown by FIG. 10. Regarding its form, the attached sheet metal profile 38 corresponds, e.g., to the lower edge 11 of FIG. 7, i.e., it has the shape of a U with different-length limbs, whereby the shorter limb is provided with a folded-over edge 33. This sheet metal profile 38 may consist of the same material as the sheet metal component 9, or it may consist of a different material, for example, a harder steel. Preferably, it is a sheet metal component that has been manufactured by roll-forming. Adhesive connections or weld seams or weld spots may be used for connection. Preferably, at least one continuous weld seam extending over the entire length of the sheet metal profile 38 is provided in order to connect the flatly superimposed parts of the longer limb of the sheet metal profile 38 and the lower part of the central section 12 to each other.

In addition, it is also possible to modify the upper edge 10, as is shown by FIG. 10. This applies to each and every variation of the sheet metal components 9, as described hereinafter. For example, the upper edge 10 may be formed by a U-shaped sheet metal section having two limbs 40, 41 that are angled in the same direction with respect to the central section 12, said limbs enclosing an internal space that is open on one side. A stiffening rod 42 may be inserted into this internal space, said rod, for example, consisting of a fiber composite material, for example, a composite material of carbon fibers and plastic material. An adhesive may be used to hold the stiffening rod 42 in place on the surfaces that surround said rod.

It is further possible, however, not illustrated in greater detail, to connect a stiffening rod 42 only on one side to the sheet metal component 9 that is completely flat in this region, in this case. The stiffening rod may be configured as a rectangular profile that has a flat side that is cemented to the sheet metal component. In this case, the upper edge 10 represents, for example, a straight extension of the central section 12.

It is further possible to provide the stiffening rod with a longitudinally extending slit into which extends the sheet metal component 9. A glue joint may be used to connect the stiffening rod 42 to the edge 10 or the sheet metal component.

FIG. 8 shows yet another modification. The sheet metal component 9 is bent at its lower edge in a manner similar to that shown in FIG. 9. However, in this case, the heald support rail 14, in contrast with that of FIG. 9, does not consist of a solid rail but of a sheet metal profile that has been manufactured, for example, by roll-forming. Here, shape-rolling is referred to as “roll-forming”.

Considering each and every modification of the sheet metal components described so far, the sheet metal tab 19 in accordance with FIG. 5, as well as the sheet metal tab 34 in accordance with FIG. 6, may be used. Also, each and every described shape of the upper edge 10 may be combined, as desired, with each and every described form of the lower edge 11. Furthermore, the sheet metal tabs 19 and/or 34 may be provided at other locations between the ends of each shaft rod, for example, in order to connect the central supports, shaft drives or miscellaneous means.

The shaft rod in accordance with the invention consists of only one (steel) metal sheet which is essentially configured without a large hollow chamber. The metal sheet has two stiffening means which are preferably located at the top and at the bottom of the shaft rod and are configured as edges. Preferably, the upper stiffening means 10 is implemented in the configuration of a small hollow chamber or of a solid reinforcement. The lower stiffening means 11 is implemented by attaching the heald support rail. Attachment may occur in accordance with any joining method, such as, for example, welding, cementing, clinching. The shaft rod may be manufactured by shape-rolling or roll-forming, as well as by all other reforming processes that are suitable for metal sheets. It is preferred that the heald support rail be directly integrated in the sheet metal form of the shaft rod. As a result, the entire shaft rod consists of a single metal sheet.

It will be appreciated that the above description of the present invention is susceptible to various modifications, changes and adaptations, and the same are intended to be comprehended within the meaning and range of equivalents of the appended claims.

LIST OF REFERENCE NUMBERS

  • 1 Heald shaft
  • 2 Upper shaft rod
  • 3 Lower shaft rod
  • 4 Lateral support
  • 5 Lateral support
  • 6 Heald
  • 7 Guide
  • 8 Rod body
  • 9 Sheet metal component
  • 10 Upper edge
  • 11 Lower edge
  • 12 Central section
  • 13 Sheet metal limb
  • 14 Heald support rail
  • 15 Limb
  • 16 Stiffening means
  • 17 Connector
  • 18 Connector
  • 19 Sheet metal tab
  • 20 Section
  • 21 Edge
  • 22 Limb
  • 23 Limb
  • 24 Pocket
  • 25 End
  • 26 Side
  • 27 End piece
  • 28 Pivot axis
  • 29 Step
  • 30 Set screw
  • 31 Clamping element
  • 32 Limb
  • 33 Edge
  • 34 Sheet metal tab
  • 35 Edge
  • 36 Limb
  • 37 Limb
  • 38 Sheet metal profile
  • 39
  • 40 Limb
  • 41 Limb
  • 42 Stiffening rod