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Патент USA US2408360

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0% 1, .1946;
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2,408,359. ‘
- R. |_.- AKERS'
COUPLING AND STEERING‘ UNIT
Filed June 29, 1945
H55.1
INVENTOR.
_
R, L . H1: ens
BY
(ML Mull.
HTTYS
2,408,359
Patented Oct. 1, 1946
UNITED STATES
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ferries I I
FCOUPEINGAND
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v e ‘BichardJLamtenee Akers, ?eoriamlllqlassignorito
G;'Le 'llonrneau;'1nc., Stockton, fCalifa‘a cor-g
mutation o‘??'aliforniaa
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.*_Appli'ca_tion~_~June;-29, 1945;;Serial;No.;602,346:
“10 ‘Claims. (clyllao'gm'l)
‘1
adapted‘ to the ‘ connected between the deck “I, at
This invention is ‘directed to a, draft, coupling
and power steering ‘unit Ior ‘a. tractor-trailer _ve-'
v the rear ‘of-2a tractor j and the. front ‘ end v,of; aerigid,
hicle combination wherein said unit. connects .the
»a‘~trai1er,>.whereb_y the tractor is connected-gin
iionwardly;projectingvdraft7 tongue or yoke 12.7 of
tractor. to a the, trailer .and additionally iunctions
draft‘ and steerable» relation" to": said 1 trailer; the
unit comprising the following structure;v
to. power steer. the, tractor regardless of, the rela;
tiire.,later'al_tiltibetweenithe tractor and trailer
:Anupwardly facing, substantially ‘circularsup
as ‘occasioned by the vehicle combination“ trav
ersingrunevengmund.
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porting; discv 3-15 edisposed‘ahove-the deck ‘ l: in
{spaced relation thereto;.said‘supporting disc+3 1
’
ITI'he above. .drait. coupling :and poweresteering
including legs» ~¢i~ which. depend:v therefrom’. 0n .' op
unitiisvdesigned, for.__example, to couple a tractor 10 iposite‘sides lengthwise either-tractor. .Adjacent
off the two-wheel. ‘iTournapull’i' type to a“ trailer
their lower ends the legs 4 are laterallyswingably
such as,aidurnpswagonqlwheelésupported portable
.or'ritiltably v,journaled in connection with :a _.sub
crane“ earth carrying , scraper, -, for other, ‘similar
construction equipment;v ;
r
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‘stantially horizontal, longitudinally extending
V15 ‘ spindle ' 5 supportedwat' its ends '- by brackets is
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I .One ‘feature ,of- theh'ereiiiv ,describedrdraft cou
?xed .in cqn-nectionswith and, upstanding .from the
pling and power steering unit isgthenoveltmech
.anism employed to» transmit. a,reversible, tractor
deck] of-the-itractor.
with its ‘center ,of universal-movement .alined with a
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Y
:Sv‘herein-aiterbeingltermed the upper disc._
provide va .draft coupling _.andv_ipower steering. unit Y
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The upperadisc extends?beyondthe periphery
which includes,. in, combination with a.pair-~;of
of ‘the “supporting disc 3‘ and the depending legs
:47, as. tshoumi ‘and said ‘upper. discis formed'at its
periphery with a depending annular ?ange 1.0
cooperating. members ,secured “together 1-f011. ‘rota:
rtion?about-ean upstanding axis -.and wherein .eone
of.,_said._.me_mbers is connected in. ?xed“ relation. to
theitrailerrand theotherrof saidanemberstis con
yneetedelto "the tractor lfor, ,unitary- lateral tilting;
iormedqontheinner face with an internal gear
H. The supporting disc 3 is formed,aat.ithe,.back
of“ the device, :i.. e.‘ overhanging the 1 deck 4‘ rear
(afraid-members relative to the same; arringegear
secured concentrically iwithcvsaid. one. member‘; a
pinion v,journaled ‘on ‘the vtmemberaand meshing
wardly ofsthe spindle 5,’ with ,a' vertically ‘spaced
pair of bearing supporting ‘rings [2 a which .carry
hearings ‘I713.- forv an upstandingshaft V I4’ journaled '
with the "gear; iandtdrive rmechanismrarrangedi to - "
in connection with and. extending. between vsaid
reversibly drive the pinion ~from. the: tractcrgre
bearings. Betweenthe hearings Iv3..the shaft, ‘l4
is‘iitted with ,a pinion; l-?-which meshes with the
gardl‘ess of the relative lateral tilt betweenethe
same. and saidunitarymembers.
--An additional feature of the inventioneis to
e
relationconltopofrthe supporting disc}; the disc
‘Another, featureofuthe instant ‘nyentionisto
provide a draft coupling and powerwsteering unit
which is simpleibutl-ruggedlin structure, and S7613
,
‘Lot cylindrical’ configuration and about which
postia sleeve. 8 ,is vturn-ably mounted. The sleeve
{Eris formedat itslower. end in ‘connection with
another disc 9 which seats inmatchingvtu'rna‘ble
the longitudinal axisabout which said: unit is
adapted vto-tilt relatiye to the tractor. _
'
Theqsupporting disc 3 .is,,provided,,substantial1y
‘centrally thereof, with. a rigid upstanding post
steeringgdrive from thewtractorvto said llriitre
gardl'ess ofnthe lateral ltilt .therebetween; »,such
mechanism including a universal joint disposed
internal ring-gear H.
a '
I aAnother visha'ft. 15. projects upwardly through
40
the deckiiircmwithin the tractor ‘and ‘into sub
stantially endwise .alihement with the shaft 14:;
the shaft l5~being selectively and reversibly
is intended."
driven vthy tractor. engine-actuated power’ trans,
- These ohje¢tsn.--_are< accomplished by ‘means. of. 45 mission means, (not :shown)‘. Theuadiacent ‘ends
such: structurerand relative-arrangement for. parts
of; the-shafts (Ill-and, lt‘lare coupled together,
exceedinglyie?ective ior.~,the~:pur,-p0se iorwhich- it
nearwardly- of thel's'pindlee?q- Joy means ,oLaunii- speei?cationgandclaimsi
g
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ginr-t-hegdrzawing; similar‘ characterslof reference
indicate eorresponding :partsiinv thegseveralis'iews : 50
zEigune, "1v is =-a».-seetionalrelevationcfi the time 7
proved draft couplinguand powersteering-nniue I
Figure 2 eat planz-view, -0l'l>.~.r€d11(i€_:d~$cale,§ of
the:supporting'discstructure,
,
- ~Befer-ring; new; Imore-panti ularly
ithe are
eaters ~Qirreferencesmrtbe?drawinsgsthe ‘ ,tgis ;
versal joint I?! whose-center. of uniyersalomover
‘ment, is .alined. 'withhthe axis, ~lofrsaid; spindle 5.,
andiconsequentlyr the axis, of lateral tilting» move.
mentl vo£.;.the unitary assembly of discs 5; and},
together with-the nest. PI.‘v and surrounding sleeved
Irnctherv words; the universal‘ joints, ll couples
' shafts l4 and 1 6' in a rnannereso that tthe-lpinion
,l?iniayi,
driwanzfroifnifsaidqshafti ,.lllilregardless
2,408,359
3
of the relative lateral tilt between the tractor
and the described power steering unit.
Such unit is connected in ?xed relation to the
steering unit comprising a pair of cooperating
‘ members secured together for relative rotation
about an upstanding axis, means adapted to con
nect
member in ?xed relation to the trailer,
mally rearwardly facing attachment plate l8 in meansoneadapted
to connect the other member to
formed with the sleeve 8 and upper disc 9, as
the tractor for unitary lateral tilting of said
shown; said attachment plate i8 being secured
members relative to said tractor about a longi
trailer by means of a ?at, upstanding, and nor
to a corresponding ‘attachment plate‘ IS on the
tudinal axis, a ring gear securedjrconcentrically
front end of the draft tongue or yoke 2 of the
trailer, by bolts 20.
When the power steering unit is in use, the
selective reversible drive from the‘shafti ‘I6 is
with'said one member, a pinion carried by and
v10 joumaled on the other member about a vertical
' axis and meshing with the gear, and a drive shaft
assembly connected in driving relation to the pin
ion and operative regardless of the relative lateral
resultant travel between said pinion and the in-' ] tilt between the tractor and said unitary mem
bers; said drive shaft assembly including a uni
ternal ring gear H. Such travel between the
transmitted, through the universal joint H, to
the pinion l5, causing the same (to rotate with
pinion and ring gear is re?ected as relativerota- tion between the post 1 and sleeve 8, which causes ,
versal joint disposed with its center of universal
movement substantially alined with the axis of
tilting movement of said unitary members.
steering of the tractor relative to the trailer, and
4. A tractor-trailer draft coupling and power
‘which steering is accomplished, as previously eX 20
steering unit comprising a pair of cooperating
plained, regardless of the relative lateral tilt be
members secured together for-relative rotation
;tween the steering unit and the tractor.
about an upstanding axis, means adapted to con
, From the foregoing description it will be readily
nect one member in ?xed relation to the trailer,
seen that there has been produced such a device
as substantially ful?lls the objects of the inven 25 means adapted to connect the other member to
the tractor for unitary lateral tilting of said
tion, as set forth herein.
members relative to said tractor about a longi
VWhile this speci?cation sets forth in detail the
tudinal axis-a ring gear secured concentrically
present and preferred construction of the device,
with said one member, a pinion carried by and
may be resorted to as do not form a departure 30 journaled on the other member about a vertical
axis and meshing with the gear, the pinion being
‘still in'practice such deviations from such detail
from the spirit of the invention, as de?ned by
the appended claims.
7
Having thus described the invention, the fol
lowing is claimed as new and useful and upon
disposed for rotation about _-an upstanding ‘axis,
andv an -'upstanding drive‘sihaft assembly 'con
‘nected to‘the pinion, and said assembly including
a universal joint with its centerof universal move~
which Letters Patent are desired:
35 ment substantially‘alined with the axis of tilting
1. A tractor-trailer draft coupling and power
of said’v members.
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steering unit comprising a pair of cooperating
5. A tractor-trailer draft coupling and power
members secured together for relative rotation
steering unit comprising a pair of cooperating
about an upstanding axis, means adapted to con
members secured together for relative rotation
nect one member in fixed relation to the trailer,
about an upstanding axis, means adapted to con
'means adapted to‘ connect the other member to
nect
one ‘member in ?xed relation to the trailer,
the, tractor for unitary lateral tilting of said
means adapted to connect the other member to
vmembers relative .to'said tractor about a‘longi
the tractor for unitary lateral tilting of said
tudinal axis, a ring gear secured concentrically
members relative to said tractor about a longi
‘with said one member, a pinion carried by and
tudinal axis,‘ a ring gear secured concentrically
journaled on the other member about a vertical
with said one member, a pinion carried by and
‘axis and meshing with the gear, and drive means
journaled‘ on the other member about a vertical
connected in driving relation to the pinion and
axis and meshing with the gear, the pinion being
operable to drive the latter regardless of the rela
disposed'for rotation about an upstanding axis,
tive lateral tilt between the tractor and said
and an upstanding drive shaft assembly cong
unitary members.
a
1 ,2. A tractor-trailer draft coupling and power
steeringunit comprising a pair 'of cooperating
members secured together for relative rotation
nectedv tothe pinion, and said assembly including
a universal joint with its center ‘of universal
movement substantially alined with the axis of
about an upstanding axis, means adapted to con 55 tilting movement of said unitary members.
6.'A tractorytrailer draft coupling and power
nect one member in ?xed relation to the trailer,
steering unit comprising an upwardly facing sup
means adapted to connect the other member to
porting disc, meansadapted to mount the disc
the tractor for unitary lateral tilting ,of said
on the tractor for relative lateral tilting about
members relative to said tractor about a longi
a longitudinally extending axis, another disc
tudinal axis, a ring gear secured concentrically 60 mounted in face to face relation on the support
'with said one member, a pinion carried by‘ and
ing disc and being rotatable thereon about a ver
journaled on the other member about a vertical
tical axis, means adapted to ?x said other disc
axis and meshing with thelgear, and mechanism
arranged to reversibly drive the pinion regardless
of the relativelateral tilt between the tractor
and said unitary members; said mechanism in
cluding an upstanding pinion supporting shaft,
in rigid connectionwith the trailer, and driving
mechanism, including a universal joint, arranged
to cause relative rotation between the discs the
center of universal movement'of such joint being
substantially alined with the longitudinal axis
an upstanding tractor supported drive shaft in
'of tiltingof said supporting'disc whereby the
substantially vertical alinement with the pinion .
relative
between the discs may be'effected
supporting shaft, and a universal joint connect 70 without rotation
affecting the relative lateral tilt between
ing adjacent ends of the shafts, the center of
the'supDOrtin'g disc and the’ tractor.
v "
universal movement of said joint being substan
' '7.‘v Atractori-trailer vdraft coupling and power
tially alined with the axis of tilting movement
of,said?unitaryimembers.
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‘ - '3; A tractor-trailer draft coupling and power
steering unit comprising an upwardly facing sup‘
porting disc, means adapted to‘ mount the disc
75 on the tractor'for relative’ lateralitilting ‘about
2,408,359
5
a longitudinally extending axis, another disc
mounted in face to face relation on the support
ingdisc and being rotatable thereon about a ver
tical axis, means adapted to ?x said other disc
in rigid connection with the trailer, and driving
mechanism, including a universal joint, arranged
to cause relative rotation between the discs re
on the tractor for relative lateraltilting about. a
longitudinally extending axis, an upstanding post
on said'supporting disc, a sleeve relatively turn
ably surrounding the post, another disc on the
lower end of the post engaging; said supporting
disc for relative rotation, means-adapted to ?x
c- the sleeve in rigid connection-with the trailer,
and driving mechanism, including“ a universal
gardless of said relative lateral tilt; the universal
arranged to cause relative, rotation between
joint being, disposed with its center of universal 10 'joint,
the
post
and sleeve; the universal joint being
movement substantially alined with said longi
disposed with its center of universal movement
tudinally extending axis.
.
substantially alined with said longitudinally ex
8. A tractor-trailer draft coupling and power ‘ tending axis.
steering unit comprising an'upwardly facing sup
10. A‘tractor-trailer draft coupling and power
porting disc, means adapted to mount the disc .
steering unit comprising an upwardly facing sup
15
on the tractor for relative lateral tilting about
porting disc, means ‘adapted to mount the disc
a longitudinally extending axis, an upstanding
on the tractor for relative lateral’ tilting about
post on said supporting disc, a sleeve relatively
a longitudinally extending axis, an upstanding
turnably surrounding the post, another disc on
post On said supporting disc, a sleeve relatively
the lower end of the post engaging said support
turnably surrounding the post, another disc on
ing disc for relative rotation, means adapted to 20 the lower end of the post engaging said support
?x the sleeve in rigid connection with the trailer,
ing disc for relative rotation, means adapted tov
and driving mechanism, including a universal
?x the sleeve in rigid connection with the trailer,
joint,_arranged to cause relative rotation between
a ring gear on said other disc, a pinion journaled
the post and sleeve, the center of universal move
in
connection with the supporting disc and mesh
ment ‘of said joint being substantially alined with
ing with said gear, the pinion having an upstand
of
tilting
of
said
supporting
the longitudinal axis
ing axis, and an upstanding drive shaft assembly
disc whereby the relative rotation between the
coupled to the pinion; said assembly including
post and sleeve may be effected without affecting
' a universal joint whose center of universal move
the relative lateral tilt between the supporting
ment is substantially alined with said longitudi
disc and the tractor.
‘
nally
extending axis.
9. A tractor-trailer draft coupling and power
steering unit comprising an upwardly facing sup
RICHARD LAWRENCE AKERS.
porting disc, means adapted to mount the disc
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