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Oct. 15, 1946.
2,409,553
H. c. DRAKE
RAIL FLAW DETECTOR MECHANISM
Filed April 13, 1943
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INVEN TOR;
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Oct. 15, 1946.
H. c. DRAKE
2,409,553
RAIL FLAW DETECTOR ‘MECHANISM
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Filed April 13, 1943
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Oct. 15, 1946.
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RAIL FLAVI DETECTOR MECHANISM
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INVENTOR.
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BY
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ATTORZSZZ'Y
Patented Oct. 15, 1946
2,409,553
UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE
2,409,553
RAIL FLAW DETECTOR MECHANISM
Harcourt C. Drake, Hempstead, N. Y., assignor to
Sperry Products, Inc., Hoboken, N. J., a. corpo
ration of New York
Application April 13, 1943, Serial No. 482,848
14 Claims. (01. 175-183)
1
This invention relates to rail flaw‘ detector
mechanisms such as are now employed on the
Sperry rail flaw detector cars. These cars run
along the railroad tracks and pass current con
2
operate separate pens on a moving chart. Here
tofore the joint cutout mechanism described
above was so arranged that detection ceased when
the detector unit, which included a plurality of
sets of coils, approached to within about 3" of
the angle bar and remained cut out until the
last set of coils had passed about 3” beyond the
tinuously through the rails between spaced con
tact brushes to set up an electromagnetic ?eld
surrounding the rail. Flaws in the rail caused
leaving end of the angle bar. It can readily be
by ?ssures are discovered by reason of the fact
that they set up non-uniform regions in the said
understood that by the time the last set of coils
electromagnetic ?eld. Such non-uniformities are 10 had passed 3" beyond the angle bar the front
set of coils had passed some 9" beyond the angle
detected by means such as induction coils main
bar, and this meant that at least 9" of rail at
tained at a constant distance above the rail head,
‘the entering side and another 9" of- rail at the
the coils normally cutting a constant number of
leaving side of each angle bar remained un
lines of force, but on encountering a region of
?aw they cut a different number of lines of 15 tested. In my prior co-pending patent applica
force to generate a differential electromotive
tion Serial No. 395,918 for “Rail flaw detector
force which, after being suitably ampli?ed, may
mechanism,” ?led May 31, 1941, I have provided
be caused to operate indicating means. Such
one solution of the problem thus created, and
said solution materially reduced the amount of
indicating means may take the form of one or
more pens operating on a moving chart within 20 rail at either end of the angle bar which re
mained untested by reason of the joint cutout
the car, and also the deposit of paint on the rail
mechanism. For this purpose my prior solution
in the region of ?aw by reason of a simultaneous
operation of a paint gun.
consisted in providing a plurality of sets of joint
a It will be understood that rail joints which
cutout mechanisms, each set cooperating with a
consist of angle bars, bolts, etc., serving to con 25 respective set of detector coils so that the front
nect the adjacent rail ends will also cause non
set of coils would be ready for detection as soon
uniformity in the electromagnetic ?eld surround
as said set of coils had passed about 3” beyond
the leaving end of the angle bar, without waiting
for the entire rear set of coils to pass said angle
ing the rail, and unless means were provided for
taking care of this situation such variation in
?eld caused by the angle bar would be picked up 30 bar, as was the case in the original joint cutout
mechanism disclosed in my prior Patent No. 2,
in the same manner as an internal ?ssure, and
069,030. Similarly, on approaching an angle bar
moreover, would actuate the detector mechanism
the rear set of coils which heretofore had been
throughout the entire passage of the mechanism
rendered ine?ective when the front set of coils
over the angle bar. To prevent such response of
was within 3" of the angle bar, now remained
the detector mechanism to the entire region of
effective until the rear set of coils itself, inde
the angle bar, my prior Patent No. 2,069,030 for
pendently of the front set of coils, was within
“Rail ?ssure detector,” granted January 26, 1937,
3" of the angle bar, thus permitting a region of
discloses a joint cutout mechanism for the pur
rail close to the angle bar to be tested which
pose of cutting out the operation of the detector
mechanism during the interval that the detector 40 heretofore remained untested.
mechanism is passing over an angle bar. The
means there employed consist of a plurality of
pivotally mounted ?ngers which extend below
While the solution of a plurality of sets of
joint cutout ?ngers disclosed in my prior appli
cation Serial No. 395,918, proved to be effective
to permit testing close to angle bars, nevertheless
the rail head on the gauge side thereof, so that
normally the ?ngers are free of engagement with 4.5 it was found that the multiplicity of joint ?ngers
required a great deal of servicing because these
the rail, but when an angle bar is approached,
?ngers are relatively light, and on meeting for
the ?ngers will successively be rocked about their
eign obstructions other than the angle bars, as ‘
pivots to cause the detector mechanism to be
well as by reason of frequent contact with the
rendered ineffective.
In the Sperry rail ?aw detector mechanism the 50 angle bars, became bent and their bearings be
came worn. It is therefore one of the principal
detector unit comprises a plurality of sets of de
objects of my invention to provide a joint cutout
tector coils arranged to pass successively over
mechanism which will reduce the number of
any given rail portion. These ‘sets of detector
joint cutout ?ngers while accomplishing the same
coils operate into separate input channels of an
result as in my prior application, namely, cut
ampli?er, and the outputs from said channels
‘2,409,553
3
4
ting out detector coils as separate independent
units, thus permitting testing close to joints.
more pairs of coils, three such pairs being shown
in the present instance, one pair 22 being posi~
tioned with their axes parallel to the longitudi
nal axis of the rail, While the other pairs of coils
Where sets of joint cutout ?ngers are used to
engage the angle bar at both the entering and
leaving ends, it has been found that there is a CR 22’ and 22" are positioned with their axes trans
time lag, particularly at the leaving end after the
verse of the longitudinal axis of the rail. Each
?nger has left the bar, until the ?nger has swung
pair of coils is connected in series and oppositely
through an arc to render the indicating means
wound so that variations in flux which affect
again effective. The time necessary for this ?n
both simultaneously, such as variations in the
ger to swing through an arc is constant, but the
current supply, or equal variations in the distance ,
length of rail traversed by the detector mecha
of the coils above the rail will a?ect both equally
nism in this time interval will be a function of
and oppositely, and thus will not affect the ?aw
the car speed. Thus, at 6 miles per hour, a given
detection. On entering a region of ?aw how
- piece of rail at the leaving end of the angle bar
ever, ?rst one and then the other of said coils
will be untested, but if the car is moving 9 miles
will cut a di?erent number of lines of force from
an hour a 50% greater piece of rail will remain
that which was previously cut, to generate a dif
untested. It is therefore another object of my
ferential electromotive force. Each set of coils
invention to provide a joint cutout mechanism
operates into a separate channel of an ampli?er.
wherein the rendering of the indicating mecha
The outputs from said channels may be caused to
nism e?ective and ineffective will be independent 20 operate suitable indicators (not shown) such as
ofth'e car speed.
Further objects and advantages of this inven
tion will become apparent in the following de
tailed ‘description thereof:
In the accompanying drawings,
Fig. 1 is a side elevation partly diagrammatic of
a portion of a rail ?ssure detector car showing
my invention applied thereto.
Fig. 2 is a vertical section through the cams
and drive mechanism therefor.
Fig. 3 is an end view of the Fig. 2 ‘device.
Fig. 4 is a plan view of a portion of the Fig. 3
device.
Fig. 5 is a wiring diagram of the invention.
v Fig. 6 is a view similar to Fig. 5 showing a mod
pens on a moving chart.
As stated in the introduction to this speci?ca
tion, an angle bar A comprising tie plates B, and
a plurality of bolts C, will distort the electromag
25 netic ?eld surrounding the rail in the same man
ner as a ?ssure, and throughout the entire pas
sage of the detector mechanism over the joint,
indications would be coming through on the chart
causing continuous actuation of the pens, thus
obscuring the chart and making it dif?cult to
read. This is particularly dangerous with respect
to actual ?ssures existing near the angle bars,
because it would be impossible to distinguish such
a pen indication from the plurality of pen indi
35 cations immediately adjacent thereto, and caused
ified form of the invention.
by the joint construction. For this reason, in the
said prior Patent No. 2,069,030 there was pro
vided a pair of spaced ?ngers mounted on the
current brush carriage H in advance of and to
modi?ed form of rail joint pickup mechanism.
40 the rear of the detector coils within housing 23.
Referring to Fig. 1 of the drawings there are
These ?ngers were adapted to engage the angle
shown the parts of a standard Sperry rail ?ssure
bar when the detector coil approached a region
detector car which includes a car body l9 oper
where the angle bar began to distort the electro
ating along the rails R. Fissure detection is ac
magnetic ?eld. This region began to distort the
Fig. 7 is a view similar to Figs. 5 and 6 showing
a further modi?cation of my invention.
Fig. 8 is a view largely diagrammatic showing a
complished by passing current through each rail 45 electromagnetic ?eld.
from a generator G within the car body supply
ing current to spaced current brushes H and i2
supported upon the current brush carriage E3
This region began about
3" in advance of the angle bar and extended the
same distance beyond the leaving end of the angle
bar. The two pivoted ?ngers therefore were so
which ‘when in lowered effective position is adapt
positioned that the ?rst ?nger engaged the angle
ed to ride upon the rail by means such as wheels
bar when the leading detector coil was about 3"
away from the entering end of the angle bar, and
cont-rolled a circuit which rendered the indicating
mechanism ineffective While the detector mecha
nism was passing over the angle bar. Before the
leading ?nger had left the angle bar the rear ?n
'ger engaged said angle bar so that after the
15. The current brush carriage I3 is normally
held in elevated or ineffective position by means
of springs not shown, and cables IE, but when it
is desired to lower said carriage, ?uid pressure
such as compressed air is supplied to the cylin- ‘
‘ders I‘! to force out pistons 9! 8, which are pivotally
connected at l9 to the current brush carriage l3.
The current passed through the rail by way of
spaced brushes i I and i2 will establish an elec
tromagnetic ?eld surrounding the rail, and this
?eld will be uniform except in the region of flaw,
where it will be distorted. Such distortions of the
electromagnetic ?eld are detected by a ?aw re
sponsive mechanism which may take the form
of a plurality of induction coils supported in a
housing 23 at a constant distance above the rail
surface by means of a carriage 24. Said carriage
24 is mounted on current brush carriage #3 by
means of loosely ?tting bolts 25 and springs 29
to permit said carriage 24 while riding on the rail
on means such as wheels 21, to move independ
ently of carriage 13 so that said carriage may at
all times vmaintain parallelism with the rail sur
face regardless of irregularities thereof. The
?aw responsive mechanism may include one or
leading ?nger passed beyond the bar the circuit
through the indicating mechanism nevertheless
remained ineffective because the rear ?nger was
now on the angle 'bar. The rear ?nger remained
on the angle bar until the rearmost coil had
passed the ‘?eld of distortion created by the bar,
which was about 3” beyond the leaving end
thereof, and then the rear ?nger dropped from
the angle bar to render the indicating mechanism
again effective. By this time the leading detector
coil was about 9" beyond the leaving end of the
angle bar, and therefore this portion of rail nor
mally remained untested. A similar portion
remained untested in advance of the angle bar.
In Order to avoid the condition of such large
untested portions of rail in advance of and be
yond each angle bar I conceived the idea in my
prior poo-pending patent application Serial No.
395,918 of providing a plurality of pairs of joint
5
2,409,553
cutout ?ngers, each pair cooperating with a set
of detector coils. Thus, one pair of ?ngersywas
provided to cooperate with the pair of; longi-l
tudinal coils 22 and another pair of joint cutout
?ngers Was provided to cooperate with the two
pairs of transverse coils 22' and 22". By‘this
6
that each input channel in the ampli?er is short
circuited depends upon the arcuate length of
projection 55, that is, the distance between its
leading edge 56 and its leaving edge 60. The
length of this projection is such as to correspond
to the position on the rail of each pair of coils
from a point about 3" in advance of the angle
bar to a point about 3" beyond the angle bar.
This distance is independent of the speed of
arrangement each set of coils could be rendered
ineffective and effective as soon as it approached
and left the region of distortion of the angle bar,
which isto say about 3" in, advance and beyond 10 movement of the car, since a given angular move
ment of cam 50 corresponds to a given distance
each bar. Thus, it would not be necessary to
of movement of the car along the rail irrespec
maintain coils 22 ineffective until coils 22’ and
tive of the car speed. It will now be seen that
22f’ could be rendered effective, but coils 22 could
each pair or coils is short circuited and again
be rendered effective again just as soon as it had
passed some 3" beyond the angle bar even though 15 rendered effective independently of the other
pairs of coils so that it is not necessary to main-_
coils 22’ and 22" were still in the region of dis
tain all pairs of coils ineffective until the last of
tofrtion of the angle bar. This construction en—
them has left the‘region of angle bar distortion,
abled me to test much closer to angle bars than
and also it is‘ not necessary to render all of them
had previously been the’ case, and by this con~
struction ?ssures were found within the region 20 ineffective as soon as the ?rst of them has entered
the region of angle bar distortion.
3" to 9" from the ends of the angle bar, which
For rendering the latch 5| ineffective so that
heretofore could not be tested.
it will release cam 56 and start the movement of
The solution which I provide in my co-pending
said cam to render the pairs of coils successively
application Serial No. 395,918 is here improved
upon in the respect that I am enabled to cut 25 ineffective, I may rely upon a joint cutout ?nger _
on one side of the rail head, but I prefer to em
down the number of joint ?ngers which are
ploy joint cutout ?ngers l0 and ‘H cooperating
necessary to operate the device, and thus as set
with opposite sides of the rail head. The purpose
forth in the introduction hereto, I am enabled to
of utilizing two ?ngers on opposite sides of the
cut down the amount of servicing and thus
lengthen the life of the device. Also, I do not 30 head is set forth in my co-pending application
Serial No. 395,918, wherein it Was pointed out
provide a joint ?nger at the leaving end of the
that occasionally if a single ?nger is used a high
angle bar torender the indicating means again
spike or other projection which is not an angle
effective because the movement of the, rear joint
bar may operate this ?nger. Therefore I em
?nger in previous devices consumed a given time
interval which corresponded to a given length of 35 ploy two ?ngers on opposite sides of the rail head
rail for a given speed of movement of the car.
If the car moved at a different speed a different
length of rail would remain untested. By my
present construction I eliminate the rear joint
?nger and provide a mechanism whereby the in
dicating means is rendered effective at a given
point beyond the leaving end of the angle bar
independent of the speed of movement of the car.
To accomplished these results I mount within
the car body a shaft 40 (see Fig. 2) in a ?xed
frame 4|, the said shaft being driven from the
so that both must be actuated, as is the case at
a rail joint, in order to close the control circuit.
When said ?ngers 1i] and ‘II engage an angle bar
they are swung about their pivotal mountings to
close sets of contacts ‘l2, ‘l3, and thus close a
circuit from a source of power 14 through a mag
net 15 which attracts its armature 16 to close a
set of contacts 11, and thus energize a magnet 8!!
which attracts the latch 5| out of the path of lug
or stop 53 to permit the cam 50 to be driven by
shaft 40 through the frictional drive 44. The
leading edge 56 of projection 55 is spaced from
themicro switch 51 controlling the short circuit
of the input of coils 22 into the ampli?er, an
said shaft 40 there is mounted a cam 50 normally 50. angular distance corresponding to a movement
of approximately 3" along the rail. Thus when
held against rotation by means of a latch 5|,
?ngers l0 and ‘II have engaged the angle bar
pressed by spring 52 into the path of a lug 53
car axle by any suitable means such as a ?exible
shaft 42 connected to the shaft All through reduc
tion gearing 43 and. a friction clutch 44. Upon
?xed to the cam. As the car moves along the
rail the shaft 40 turns at a rate which is a func
tion of the speed of movement of the car, but the .
cam 50 is held against rotation by reason of the
latch 5i and the friction clutch 44. When the
detector mechanism approaches the region of
distortion caused by an angle bar, the cam 50 is
and cam 50 starts to rotate, the further move
ment of the car will cause leading edge 56 to
engage switch when the coils 22 are about 3"
from the angle bar to short circuit the input of
coils 22 into the ampli?er.
This input will re
main short circuited while switch 51 engages pro
jection 55, and the angular distance of projec
designed to be released by releasing catch 5|, 60 tion 55 is such that switch 51 will ride off the
and thus permit it to rotate with shaft 40 at a
rate'which is a function of the speed of the car
to operate short circuiting means for short cir
leaving end 60 of the projection when the car
has passed about 3" beyond the leaving end of the
angle bar. At this point the short circuit of
coils 22 will be rendered ineffective, and coils 22
cuiting the respective pairs of coils of the detec
will take up their detection duties. Similarly,
tor mechanism. An independent short circuit is
switches 58 and 59 are positioned further along
provided for each pair of coils to short circuit
in the circumferential path of leading edge 56 of
the respective input channel to the ampli?er,
projection 55 so that when coils 22’ are about 3"
whereby the time during which the short circuit
in advance of the angle bar, leading edge 56 will
begins and ends may be independently controlled
for each separate pair of coils. Thus cam 50 is 70 engage switch 58, and when coils 22" are about
3” from the angle bar leading edge 56 will engage
provided with a cam projection 55 (see Fig. 5),
switch 59. These switches also will ride off the
the forward edge 56 of which is designed to
projection 55 successfully as these pairs of coils
engage successively micro switches 51, 58 and 59,
reach a point about 3" beyond the leaving end
which control the short circuit of pairs of coils
22, 22' and 22" respectively. The length of time 75 of the angle bar.
21409.55‘;
7
From the above, it will be seen that I employ
but a single set of _ joint ?ngers’ in place‘ of the
plurality of sets of joint ?ngers which were here
tofore necessary for independently and sepa
8
i'ehdered eifective when they were in the middle
of an angle bar, the cam discs would be tripped
and would start rotating. Since such rotation
cuts out the indicato'in for a given length of rail
equal to a distance beginning about 3" in ad
vance of the angle bar and ending about 3"
drive of the cam disc is de?nitely linked to the
beyond the end of the angle bar, it can readily
movement of the car, the rendering of the coils
be seen that if the cam discs started to rotate
ineffective and effective takes place at the con
when the joint ?ngers were on the middle of an
stant distance in advance of and beyond the 10 angle bar it would result in a portion of rail
angle bars and is independent of the speed of the
being untested which should be tested, and a por
car.
tion of rail being tested which should not be
‘The set of switches 5E, 58 and 59 may be
tested. To prevent this condition from arising
mounted upon a member 6|, which is movable
the circuit through magnet 9| is controlled not
about the center of cam disc 5B so that the posi
merely by the driver’s cutout switch 90 but also
tion of said switches with respect to the leading
by sets of contacts 94 and 95, which contacts are
edge 56 may be adjusted to cause'the cutout to
closed when contacts 92 and 93 are open. Thus
become effective at a greater or lesser distance
when the contacts l2, 13 or 12’, ‘H3’ are closed by
in advance of the angle bar. For the same rea
reason of the fact that the ?ngers are on an
son the projection 55 is adjustable so that the 20 angle bar, the circuit through magnet 9! remains
rear end 60 thereof may engage the switches at
closed by way of contacts 54 and 95 even though
an adjustable angle to permit the coils to be
switch 90 is open. Therefore it is not unitl the
rendered effective at a greater or lesser distance
joint cutout ?ngers leave the angle bar that mag
after the coils have left the angle bar. For this
net SI can be deenergized to permit contacts 92
purpose there is mounted upon the cam disc 50 a 25 and 93 to be closed to render the magnets l5 and
member 85 adjustable by pin and slot connection
15’ again effective.
BI, 82 with respect to the center'of cam disc 5%.
In parallel with switch 96 designed to be oper
The circumference of member 85 forms an ex
ated by the driver of the car, there must be pro
tension of projection 55 which can thus be made
vided a switch 96’ in the operators’ compartment
longer or shorter to determine the distance be 30 so that the operator also may render the joint
yond the leaving end of the angle bar at which
cutout mechanism ineffective.
the pairs of coils are to be rendered successively
In a modi?ed form of the invention as dis
effective.
‘
closed in Fig. 6, instead of employing a snigle
In addition to the switches 51, 58 and 59 which
cam disc such as disc 50 adapted to engage a
are adapted to be engaged by the cam projection 35 plurality of switches in succession, a plurality of
55 there is also a switch 83 positioned so that it
cam discs I60, l?l, I62 may be employed, one for
rately cutting out the action of the respective
pairs of detector coils. Furthermore, since the
engages the leading edge 56 almost as soon as
the cam disc 50 starts to rotate. This switch,
each switch.
rail, all of the parts being shown with similar
numerals primed. The magnetic latch of the
duplicate mechanism is controlled by a magnet
80' in a circuit controlled by contacts ll" which
are in turn controlled by magnet 75’ in the cir
switches may be mounted on an adjustable panel
so that each set may be positioned to determine
the exact point of out oif where the detector
In this case the switches are ar
ranged transversely in line, and the cam projec
unlike switches 57, 58 and 59, which are normally
tions I05, I06, ID‘! are so positioned that their
open, is normally closed, and engagement of the 40 leading edges will engage the switches in proper
switch with edge 56 opens the switch to break a
time sequence.
circuit and operate what is known as a low
In this form of the invention instead of ad
current pen. The pen will therefore indicate on
justing the length of cam projection W5, I06, I01
the chart the extent of the joint because the
to determine the point at which the switches
switch 82 remains open until it has passed be is. 3.1 leave the projection and the joint cutouts again
yond the edge 6!}.
become effective, two sets of switches may be em
All of the description hereinbefore applies to
ployed, one set {08, I09, H8 connected in par
the rail ?aw detector mechanism and the joint
allel with a set of switches Hi8’, H39’, H0’, the
cutout mechanism which cooperates with one
latter set being spaced from the ?rst set around
rail. The mechanism is duplicated for‘ the other 50 the circumference of the cam discs. Each set of
mechanism is rendered ineffective, and the exact
points where the detector mechanism is again
rendered effective. In this manner the cutout
may be adjusted for various lengths of angle
is necessary to render the ‘equipment inoperative
bars without the necessity of changing the length
because the planks, etc., adjacent the track would
of cam projection. By adjusting the position of
close the joint cutout ?ngers at both sides of 60 switches “38, I39 and H0 with respect to the
each rail and therefore operate the cam discs in
leading edges of projectionslllt'a', H16 and Ill‘! the
the same manner as an angle bar, Therefore
exact time at which the detector mechanism is
there is provided in the circuit of magnet 75' and
rendered ineffective is determined.
These
15’ a driver’s cutout switch 9% designed to be
switches ride upon the projections and before
operated by the driver when he sees such rail
they leave the same, the second set of switches
condition approaching. Closing of switch at
I88’, E09" and H6’ ride upon the projections, and
energizes a magnet'?l which breaks sets of con
since they are connected in parallel with the ?rst
cuit of joint cutout ?ngers l9’ and TI’.
‘
When the car approaches a road crossing it
tacts 92 and 93 which are in the circuits of mag
nets ‘!5 and 75’ respectively, and thus prevents
the circuit magnets 86 and 8!’ from being en
ergized. When the crossing is passed the driver
opens switch 98 which deenergizes magnet Qi,
closes contacts 92 and 93 to render the magnets
15 and 15’ again effective.
'
If the cutouts 10, ll, 18' andr'H' were again
set of switches they will keep the detector mech
anism ineffective. The second set of switches is
also mounted upon an adjustable panel which
can be adjusted with respect to the center of the
cam discs to determine the exact point where
these vswitches will leave the cam projections, and
the detector mechanism again becomes eifective.
Other means than those shown in Figs. 1 and 5
2,409,553
9
.
.
.
10
.
the apparatus which I now consider to represent
the best embodiment thereof, but I desire to have
discs may be employed. As described, joint ?ngers
it understood that the apparatus shown is only
are caused to contact the angle bar on either side
illustrative and that the invention can be carried
of the rail head and these control the circuits
out by other equivalent means. Also, while it is
which energize the unlatching magnets 80, 8t’. It
designed to use the various features and elements
has bee‘: stated that one of the improvements
in the combination and relations described, some
which have been obtained by this invention over
of these may be altered and others omitted with
that disclosed in my co~pending prior application
out interfering with the more general results out
Serial No. 395,918 is the reduction in the number
of joint ?ngers, and consequently in the lessen 10 lined, and the invention extends to such use.
Having described my invention, what I claim
ing of the amount of servicing and in increasing
and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:
the reliability of operation. This advantage may
1. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to move
be carried still further by adopting a joint re
over the rails for detecting rail flaws, ?aw indi—
sponsive means which does not rely upon the piv~
oted ?ngers which engage the angle bar. One 15 cating mechanism, means responsive to ?aw and
adapted to actuate said indicating mechanism,
such arrangement is disclosed in Fig. '7 which re
said rails having joints, said flaw responsive means
lies upon the fundamental construction of the
for controlling the setting in motion of the cam
Sperry rail flaw detector car which employs a se
responding also to joints, a second means respon
sive to joints and adapted to cooperate with said
ries of advance brushes 66 for pre-energizing the
rail ahead of the portion contained between the 20 joints before said ?aw responsive means is in a
position to be a?ected by said joints, a rotatable
two sets of main current brushes I I and E2. The
member normally held against rotation, means
potential drop ahead of the ?rst set of main
whereby said second responsive means causes
brushes II is normally on the order of 4 mv. and
rotation of said member in response to a joint,
a set of potential contact measuring brushes 61
positioned on the current brush carriage in ad 25 and means whereby said member renders said ?aw
responsive means ine?ective to actuate said indi
vance of the leading main current brushes would
cating mechanism during a predetermined angué
normally pick oif this potential drop. However,
lar rotation of said member, said last named
when said brushes straddle a rail joint A the po
means comprising a cam carried by said member,
7 tential drop rises to the order of 100 mv. This
marked increase in potential may be utilized for 30 a switch positioned in the path of said cam to be
actuated thereby, and means whereby the posi~
the purpose of setting the cam disc in motion by
tion of the switch with respect to the leading edge
energizing the unlocking magnets 80 or M’. For
of the cam may be varied to vary the length of
this purpose there may be employed a thermi
rail
in advance of the joint which remains un
onic trip tube I20 upon the grid IZI of which
_
'
there is normally placed the potential drop be 35 tested.
2. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to move
tween the two potential brushes. This positive
over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, flaw indi
potential placed upon the grid I2l is insuf?cient
cating mechanism, means responsive to flaw and
to trip ‘the tube, but when the brushes straddle a
adapted to actuate said indicating mechanism,
rail joint the sudden and large increase in poten
tial drop does place a su?icient positive potential 40 said rails having joints, said flaw responsive
means responding also to joints, a second means
on the grid to cause the tube to trip and allow
responsive to joints and adapted to cooperate with
current to flow in the circuit which includes the
said joints before said flaw responsive means is
unlatching magnet 85. A cam disc or roller 68,
in a position to be affected by said joints, a rotat
similar to cam 58, then starts to rotate, and near
the end of its revolution just before it is in po 45 able member normally held against rotation,
‘means whereby said second responsive means
sition to be latched once more, there is provided
causes rotation of said member in response to
a switch I22 in the circuit of the tube I20 so that
a joint, and means whereby said member renders
the circuit is broken by the cam projection en
said ?aw responsive means ineffective to actuate
gaging said switch, thus restoring the tube to its
untripped position, deenergizing magnet 80 and 50 said indicating mechanism during a predeter
mined angular rotation of said member, said last
allowing the latch to become once more effective.
named means comprising a cam carried by said
The parts are then in position for the next joint
member, a switch positioned in the path of said
cutout operation. The cam carries a projection
cam to be actuated thereby, means whereby the
69 similar to projection 55 and engages the same
55 position of the switch with respect to the leading
micro switches shown in Fig. 5.
edge of the cam may be varied to vary the
Still another modi?cation wherein no pivoted
length of rail in advance of the joint which re
joint cutout ?ngers are employed is disclosed in
mains untested, and means whereby the length
Fig. 8. In this form an E-shaped magnet I30 is
of the cam may be varied at its leaving end to
mounted on the current brush carriage wih a
coil I3I On its center leg energized from any suit 60 vary the length of rail beyond the joint which
remains untested. '
able source of A. C. or D. C. I32, Upon the other
3. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to move
legs are wound coils I33, I34 which are connect
over
the rails for detecting rail flaws, ?aw indi
ed in opposition in a circuit designed to place the
potential drop thereof upon the grid I2! of the
trip tube I20. When the front leg of this unit
passes over a rail joint there is a reduction in flux
through the front leg and a corresponding in
crease in flux through the rear leg. The cur
rents induced by these flux changes are added to
gether to form an output which is su?icient to
trip the tube I20 and energize the unlatching
magnet 80.
In accordance with the provisions of the pai
ent statutes, I have herein described the princi
ple and operation of my invention, together with
cating mechanism, means responsive to ?aw, said
responsive means comprising a plurality of in
ductive means arranged longitudinally of the rail,
an amplifier having a plurality of input channels,
each of said inductive means being adapted to
operate into one of the said channels, .the output
of said ampli?er being adapted toactuate said
indicating means, said rails having joints, said
?aw responsive means responding also to joints,
a second means responsive to joints and adapted
to cooperate, with said joints before the ?rst of
' said inductive means is in a position to be affected
2,409,553
11
by said joints, a rotatable member adapted to be
operated at a speed bearing a ?xed relation to the
speed of the car, means for normally holding said
member against rotation, means whereby said
second responsive means renders said holding
12
switches being arranged in alignment transverse
to the planes of rotation of said members, and said
cams being arranged to‘ engage the respective
switches successively.
6. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to move
means ineffective and causes rotation of said
member in response to a joint, and means whereby
said member renders said inductive means suc
over the rails for detecting rail flaws, flaw indi
cating mechanism, means responsive to ?aw, said
responsive means comprising a plurality of induc~
cessively ineifective to actuate said indicating
tive means arranged longitudinally of the rail, an
mechanism during a predetermined angular rota 10 ampli?er having a plurality of input channels,
tion of said member as each of said indicating
each of said inductive means being adapted to
means reaches a position to be aifected by said
operate into one of said channels, the output of
joints.
said ampli?er being adapted to actuate said in
4. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to move
dicating means, said rails having joints, said ?aw
over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, ?aw indi~ 15 responsive means responding also to joints, a sec
cating mechanism, means responsive to ?aw, said
ond means responsive to joints and adapted to
responsive means comprising a plurality of induc
cooperate with said joints before the ?rst of said
tive means arranged longitudinally of the rail, an
inductive means is in a position to be a?ected
ampli?er having a plurality of input channels,
by said joints, a plurality of rotatable members
each of said inductive means being adapted to
mounted on a single axis in ?xed relation and
operate into one of the said channels, the output
adapted to be operated at a speed bearing a ?xed
of said ampli?er being adapted to actuate said
relation to the speed of the car, means for nor
indicating means, said rails having joints, said
mally holding said members, against rotation,
?aw responsive means responding also to joints,
means whereby said second responsive means
a second means responsive to joints and adapted 25 renders said holding means ineffective and causes
to cooperate with said joints before the ?rst of
rotation of said members in response to a joint,
said inductive means is in a position to be affected
means whereby said members render said induc
by said joints, a rotatable member adapted to be
tive means successively ineffective to actuate said
operated at a speed bearing a ?xed relation to the
indicating mechanism during a predetermined
speed of the car, means for normally holding said 30 angular rotation of said members as each of said
member against rotation, means whereby said
inductive means reaches a position to be affected
second responsive means renders said holding
by said joints, said last named means comprising
means ineffective and causes rotation of said
a short circuit for each of said input channels,
member in response to a joint, and means where»
a switch in each of said circuits, and a cam car
by said member renders said inductive means 35 ried by each of said members, said switches be
successively ineffective to actuate’ said indicating
mechanism during a predetermined angular rota~
tion of said member as each of said indicating
ing arranged in alignment transverse to the
planes of rotation of said members, and said cams
being arranged to engage the respective switches
means reaches a position to be a?ected by said
successively, and means under control of an oper
joints, said last named means comprising a short 40 ator in the car for rendering said second re
circuit for each of said input channels, a switch
sponsive means ineifective to cause rotation of
in each of said circuits, and a cam carried by
said member.
said member, said switches being arranged to
7. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to move
engage said cam in succession.
over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, flaw indi
5. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to move
cating mechanism, means responsive to ?aw and
over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, ?aw indi
adapted to actuate said indicating mechanism,
cating mechanism, means responsive to flaw, said
said rails having joints, said ?aw responsive
responsive means comprising a plurality of induc
means responding also to joints, a second means
tive means arranged longitudinally of the rail,
an ampli?er having a plurality of input channels,
each of said inductive means being adapted to
operate into one of said channels, the output of
said ampli?er being adapted to actuate said indi
cating means, said rails having joints, said flaw
responsive means responding also to joints, a
second means responsive to joints and adapted
to cooperate with said joints before the ?rst of
said inductive means is in a position to be affected
by said joints, a plurality of rotatable members
mounted on a single axis in ?xed relation and
adapted to be operated at a speed bearing a ?xed
relation to the speed of thercar, means for nor
mally holding said members against rotation,
means whereby said second responsive means
renders said holding means ineffective and causes
rotation of said members in response to a joint,
and means whereby said members render said in
ductive means successively ineffective to actuate
responsive to joints and adapted to cooperate
with said joints before said ?aw responsive means
is in a position to be affected by said joints, a
rotatable member normally held against rotation,
means whereby said second responsive means
causes rotation of said member in response to a
joint, means whereby said member renders said
?aw responsive means ineffective to actuate said
indicating mechanism during a predetermined
angular rotation of said member, and means un
der control of an operator in the car for render
ing said second responsive means ineifective to
cause rotation of said member, said last named
means comprising an electric circuit and a switch
in said circuit.
8. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to
move over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, flaw
indicating mechanism, means responsive to ?aw
and adapted to actuate said indicating mecha
nism, said rails having joints, said flaw respon
said indicating mechanism during a predeter
mined angular rotation of said members as each
sive means responding also to joints, a second
means responsive to joints and adapted to co
of said inductive means reaches a position to be
operate with said joints before said ?aw respon
affceted by said joints, said last named means
sive means is in a position to be affected by said
comprising a short circuit for each of said input
joints, a rotatable member normally held against
channels, a switch in each of said circuits, and a
rotation, means whereby said second responsive
cam carried by each of said members, said 7.5. means Causes rotation of said member in response
2,409,553
,
13
14
to a joint, means whereby said member'renders
so positioned with respect to the flaw responsive
said ?aw responsive means ineffective to actuate
means that they straddle a rail joint before said
?aw responsive means is in position to be affected
said indicating mechanism-during a predetere
mined angular rotation of said member, means
under control of an operator in the car for
rendering said second responsive means ineffec
by the joint, a thermionic trip tube adapted to
be tripped by the sudden increase in potential
drop between said contacts‘when the contacts
tive to cause rotation of said member, said last
straddle the joints, means whereby tripping of
named means comprising an electric circuit and
said tube causes rotation of‘ said member, means
a switch in said circuit, ‘and means whereby said
, whereby said member renders said ?aw respon
operator is prevented from rendering said second 10 sive means ineffective to actuate said mechanism
responsive means again effective to cause rotation
of said member while said second responsive
means cooperates with a joint, said last named
during a predetermined angular rotation of said
member, and means whereby the current ?ow
through said tube is broken after said member
is rotated through said predetermined angular
ing said ?rst circuit ineiiective and adapted to 15 distance.
means comprising a holding circuit for maintain
12. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to
move over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, said
car having means for passing current through
9. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to move
the rail to establish an electromagnetic ?eld sur
over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, said car
having means for passing current through rail 20 rounding the rail, flaw indicating means, means
responsive to variations in said ?eld caused by
to establish an electromagnetic ?eld surrounding
?aws and adapted to actuate said mechanism,
the rail, ?aw indicating means, means responsive
said ?aw responsive means responding also to
to variations in said ?eld caused by flaws and
variations in said ?eld caused by joints, a rotat
adapted to actuate said mechanism, said ?aw
responsive means responding also to variations 25 able member normally held against rotation, a
?ux responsive device carried by said c'ar adja
in said ?eld caused by joints, a rotatable mem
cent the rail surface and so positioned with re
ber normally held against rotation, potential con
spect to the ?aw responsive means that said de
tacts carried by said car and adapted to engage
vice cooperates with the rail joint before said
the rail surface, said contacts being so positioned
with respect to the ?aw responsive means that 30 ?aw responsive means is in position to be af
fected by the joint, means responsive to the var
they straddle a rail joint before said ?aw re
iations in flux in said device caused by the joint
sponsive means is in position to be affected by
for causing rotation of said member, and means
the joint, means responsive to the sudden in
whereby said member renders said flaw respon
crease in potential drop between said contacts
when the contacts straddle the joint for causing 35 sive means ineffective to actuate said mechanism
during a predetermined angular rotation of said
rotation of said member, and means whereby said
member.
member renders said flaw responsive means inef
13. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to
fective to actuate said mechanism during a pre
move over the rails for detecting rail flaws, said
determined angular rotation of said member.
car having means for passing current through
10. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to.
the rail to establish an electromagnetic ?eld
move over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, said‘
surrounding the rail, flaw indicating means,
car having means for passing current through
means responsive to variations in said ?eld
the rail to establish an electromagnetic ?eld sur
caused by flaws and adapted to actuate said
rounding the rail, ?aw indicating means, means
responsive to variations in said ?eld caused by 45 mechanism, said ?aw responsive means respond
ing also to variations in said ?eld caused by joints,
flaws and adapted to actuate said mechanism,
a rotatable member normally held against ro
said ?aw responsive means responding also to
tation, an E-shaped electromagnet carried by
variations in said ?eld caused by joints, a ro
said car so that the arms of the E project toward
tatable member normally held against rotation,
potential contacts carried by said car and adapt 50 the rail surface and are positioned longitudi
nally along the rail, coils surrounding each of
ed to engage the rail surface, said contacts being
' said arms, the coils surrounding the central arm
so positioned with respect to the flaw responsive
be rendered effective while said second respon
sive means cooperates with a joint.
means that they straddle a rail joint before said
being connected to a source of power, the coils
surrounding the other arms being equal and
?aw responsive means is in position to be affected
by the joint, a thermionic trip tube adapted to 55 connected in opposition, the electromagnet being
so positioned with respect to the ?aw responsive
be tripped by the sudden increase in potential
means that it cooperates with the rail joint be
drop between said contacts when the contacts
fore the ?aw responsive means is in position to straddle the joints, means whereby tripping of
be affected by the joint, a thermionic trip tube
said tube causes rotation of said member, and
means whereby said member renders said ?aw 60 adapted to be tripped by the sudden generation
of voltage caused by said electromagnet passing
responsive means ineffective to actuate said mech
over a rail joint, means whereby tripping of the
anism during a predetermined angular rotation
tube causes rotation of said member, and means
of said member.
whereby said member renders said ?aw respon
11. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to
sive means ineffective to actuate said mechanism
move over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, said
during a predetermined angular rotation of said
car having means for passing current through
member.
the rail to establish an electromagnetic ?eld sur
14. In a rail ?ssure detector car adapted to
rounding the rail, ?aw indicating means, means
move over the rails for detecting rail ?aws, said
responsive to variations in said ?eld caused by
?aws and adapted to actuate said mechanism, ’ car having means for passing current through
the rail to establish an electromagnetic ?eld sur
said flaw responsive means responding also to
rounding the rail, ?aw indicating means, means
variations in said ?eld caused by joints, a rotat
responsive to variations in said ?eld caused by
able member normally held against rotation, po
?aws and adapted to actuate said mechanism,
tential contacts carried by said car and adapted
said ?aw responsive means responding also to
to engage the rail surface, said contacts being
15
224092553
variations in said ?eld caused by joints, a rotat
able member normally held against rotation, an
16
by the joint, a thermionic trip tube adapted to
be tripped by the sudden generation of voltage
E-shaped electromagnet carried by said car so
caused by said electromagnet passing over a rail
that the-arms of the E project toward the rail
joint, means whereby tripping of the tube causes
surface and are positioned longitudinally along 5 rotation of said member, means whereby said
the rail, coils surrounding each of said arms, the
member renders said ?aw responsive means in
coils surrounding the central arm being con
nected to a source of power, the coils surround
effective to actuate said mechanism during a pre
determined angular rotation of said member,
ing the other arms being equal and connected in
and means whereby the current flow through said
opposition, the electromagnet being so positioned 10 tube is broken after said member has rotated
with respect to the ?aw responsive means that
through said predetermined angular distance.
it cooperates ‘with the rail joint before the flaw
responsive means is in position to be affected
HARCOURT C. DRAKE.
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