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Патент USA US3026755

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March 27, 1962
c. c. COVERT
3,025,740
PROPELLER CONTROL MECHANISM
Filed July 12, 1960
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March 27, 1962
c. c. COVERT
3,025,740
PROPELLER CONTROL MECHANISM
Filed July 12, 1960
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March 27, 1962
3,026,740
C. C. COVERT
Filed July 12, 1960
INVENTOR.
(ah/1'22 C ("or/a2‘)
BY
HIS ATTOA’IMEY \
March 27, 1962
c. c. COVERT
3,026,740
PROPELLER CONTROL MECHANISM
Filed July 12, 1960
4 Sheets-Sheet 4
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INVENTOR.
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BY
Warm
HIS ATTORNEY
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Patented Mar. 27, 1962
52.’.
verted to rotation of the internally mounted shafts which
3,926,740
are connected to high lead screws having threaded en
PERGPELLER (IUNTRGL MECHANISM
gagement with control nuts located within the regulator
assembly. The control nuts arranged within the regulator
Calvin C. Covert, Dayton, Uhio, assignor to General
Motors Corporation, Detroit, Mich, a corporation of
assembly are likewise arranged for axial movement rela
tive thereto, and are connected by suitable linkage means
to the various control valves of the hydraulic system.
Accordingly, movement of the input levers is transmitted
between the relatively rotatable components of the pro
Delaware
Filed July 12, 1960, §er. No. 42,392
18 Claims. (Cl. 74-395)
This invention pertains to variable pitch propellers, and
particularly to an improved system for transmitting con 10 peller assembly from the rear of the propeller hub,
trol intelligence between stationary and rotatable com
through the propeller hub to the various control valve
assemblies disposed within the front mounted regulator.
‘Further objects ‘and advantages of the present inven
tion will be apparent from the following description, ref
ponents of a variable pitch propeller.
In copending ‘application Serial N 0. 766,611, ?led Octo
ber 10, 1958, in the name of Conn et al., and assigned to
the assignee of this invention, a variable pitch propeller 15 erence being had to the accompanying drawings wherein a
is disclosed in which a regulator assembly is attached to
preferred embodiment of the present invention is clearly
shown.
the rear of a propeller hub supported on a stationary
in the drawings:
shaft and driven through a hollow shaft which is con
FIGURE 1 is a fragmentary View, partly in section
nected to the hub at the front end thereof. This inven
tion relates to control means for ‘a propeller of the type 20 and partly in elevation, of a propeller embodying the
disclosed in the aforementioned copending application
control mechanism of the present invention.
wherein the regulator assembly is mounted in front of the
propeller hub and the hub is connected to the input shaft
at the rear thereof.
FIGURE 2 is an enlarged fragmentary view of a por
tion of the propeller shown in FIGURE 1, partly in sec~
tion and partly in elevation, depicting the center mounted
control.
FIGURE 3 is an enlarged, fragmentary sectional View
taken along line 3—3 of FIGURE 2.
Accordingly, ‘among my objects are
the provision of an improved control system for trans
mitting intelligence from a stationary bearing housing to
a rotatable regulator assembly mounted in front of the
propeller hub; the further provision of means for trans
mitting control intelligence between relatively rotatable
components of the propeller assembly; and the still fur
FIGURE 4 is a schematic view depicting the manner
in which control intelligence is transmitted to the front
30
ther provision of means for transmitting control intelli
With particular reference to FIGURES l and 2, a pro
peller is shown including a hub ‘til having a plurality of
propeller blades 12 journalled therein for rotation about
their longitudinal axes to different pitch positions. The
gence mechanically from a stationary bearing housing
adjacent the rear of the propeller hub to a rotatable regu
lator assembly mounted in front of the propeller hub.
, The aforementioned and other objects are accom
mounted regulator assembly.
35 hub ill includes ‘an integral ‘annular extension 14 at the
plished in the present invention by converting rotary in
rear thereof which projects through ‘a ‘substantially frusto
put movement to rectilinear movement between relatively
conical stationary bearing housing, or support, in. The
annular extension portion 14 of the hub 10 is rotatably
journalled in the housing 16 by spaced front and rear
support bearings, a portion of the front support bearing
being depicted by numeral ‘1% in FIGURE 2. The end of
the annular extension 14 is splined at ‘Zil for driving con
rotatable members, and converting rectilinear movement
to rotary movement of a shaft extending centrally through
the propeller hub. Speci?cally, the propeller comprises
a hub having a plurality of blades journalled therein for
rotation about their longitudinal axes to different pitch
positions. The hub is supported for rotation by a bearing
assembly located to the rear thereof and arranged within
a stationary bearing housing. The propeller is of the
nection with a prime mover driven input shaft.
A regulator reservoir ‘assembly 22 is attached to the
front of the propeller hub Iii for rotation therewith and
type including a hydraulic servo motor for adjusting the
contains a plurality of pumps and valves constituting a
pitch position of the propeller blades, the pitch changing
part of the hydraulic system for controlling the pitch
position of the propeller blades 12. An annular slip ring
assembly 24 and a plate-type slip ring assembly 26 are
motor being controlled by a hydraulic system contained
Within the regulator ‘assembly attached to the front of the
propeller hub so as to rotate therewith.
The propeller may be operable in the regimes of gov
erned speed forward thrust, governed speed reverse thrust,
beta, or manually selected blade angles, feathering and
reverse. In addition, propeller operation may be syn
chronized with operation of other propellers in the gov
erned speed forward thrust regime. Accordingly, the
propeller includes three mechanical inputs, namely, a
condition lever, a feathering lever and a synchronizing
lever. These levers are connected through suitable link
ages to crank arms attached to radially extending shafts
supported in the stationary bearing housing. The three
shafts, in turn, ‘are connected by internal crank arms to
50
attached to the hub to for supplying electric power be
tween relatively rotatable parts of the propeller assembly.
The regulator assembly 22 and the major portion of the
hub in are enclosed by a spinner assembly 28 having fair
ing islands 30 through which the shanks of the blades 12
project.
As seen in FIGURES 1 through 3, a portion of the
annular hub extension 14 disposed within the stationary
housing 16 has a set of external straight spline teeth 32.
The straight splined portion of the hub extension is en
circled by three rings, namely, a condition ring 3d, a
feathering, or negative torque signal, ring 36, and a
synchronizing ring 38. The condition ring 34» has four
circumferentially spaced rearwardly axially extending
bellcrank assemblies disposed within the stationary bear
ing housing. The bellcranks have mechanical slip ring 65 ?ngers 4% having internal straight spline teeth 42» mating
with the external straight spline teeth 32. on the hub ex
connections with rings connected to rotate with the pro
tension 14. Similarly, the feathering and synchronizing
peller hub but capable of axial movement relative thereto.
rings, 36 and 38, respectively, have four circumferentially
The three rings disposed within the stationary bearing
spaced ?ngers 4.4 and 42-6, respectively, extending axially
housing are drivingly connected with ‘shafts extending in- '
forward and nested between the ?ngers 46. The ?ngers
ternally through the propeller hub and into the front 70 44 have internal straight spline teeth 43 mating with ex
mounted regulator assembly. Axial, or rectilinear, move
ternal straight spline teeth 32, and the ?ngers 46 have
ment of the rings relative to the propeller hub is con
internal straight spline teeth 5d mating with external
3,026,740
A.
spectively, journalled in an annular housing 118 located in
ternally of the hub extension 14. The housing 118 is
3
straight spline teeth 32. The rings 34, 36 and 33 are,
therefore, connected to rotate with the hub extension 14
although capable of axial movement relative thereto.
located relative to the hub extension 14 by an internal
annular shoulder 120 on the extension 14, one end of
Moreover, each ring is capable of axial movement inde
pendent of the other rings due to the nesting relation of
the axially extending ?ngers. Moreover, the rings 36 and
the housing 118 engaging one side of the shoulder 120,
the housing being bolted to a ring 122 which engages
the other side of the shoulder 120, the bolts being in
38 are radially spaced from the hub extension 14 so that
dicated by numerals 124 in FIGURE 3.
the ?ngers 41} of the ring 34 can move through the rings
As the means for transmitting control intelligence
36 and 38, and the ?ngers of the synchronizing ring 38
can move through the ring 36.
10 from the stub shafts 112, 114 and 116 to the front
mounted regulator assembly 22 are identical, it is deemed
One of the axially extending ?ngers attached to each
su?icient to describe only the means associated with the
ring 34, 36 and 33 has a toothed edge constituting a rack,
condition ring 34. Thus, as seen in FIGURE 2, the stub
the racks being indicated by numerals 52 on one of the
shaft 112 is drivingly connected to one end of a shaft
?ngers 4t}; 54 on one of the ?ngers 44; and 56 on one
of the ?ngers 46. A pinion supporting ring, or annulus, 15 126 which extends axially through the hub 11)‘, and the
outer end of which is connected by straight splines 128
58 encircles the hub extension 14 and is located between
and a cross pin 13%) to a coupling 132 journalled in the
the condition ring 34 and the feathering ring 36. The
regulator assembly housing. The coupling 132 contains
pinion ring 58 is radially spaced from the hub extension
a coil spring 134 which acts on the end of the shaft 126
14, as clearly shown in FIGURE 3, so as to permit axial
movement of the ?ngers relative thereto.
for maintaining the bevel gears 106 and 1110 in driving en
gagement. ‘The coupling 132 is in turn connected by
straight splines 136 to a high lead screw 138 which ex
tends to the regulator assembly. The high lead screw
The support for the pinion ring 58 comprises three
stub shafts 60, 62 and 64 extending radially through the
hub extension 14, these shafts being journalled therein
133 is journalled adjacent its end by ball bearing as
by sleeve bearings 66, 68 and 70, respectively. The stub
shafts 611, 62 and 64 have pinion gears 72, 74 and ‘76, 25 semblies 140 and 142 supported by the regulator assem
bly housing, and threadedly engages a nut, or control
respectively, drivingly connected adjacent the outer ends
member 144. As seen in FIGURE 1, the nut 144 is con
thereof, the outer ends of the shaft being journalled by
nected to one end of link means 146, the link means be
ball bearing assemblies, one of which is indicated by
ing adapted to actuate a control valve within the regulator
numeral 78 in FIGURE 2, in the pinion ring 53. The
ball bearing assemblies coaxially support the pinion ring 30 assembly. Since the linkage means 146, the nut 144 and
the screw shaft 138 all rotate with the propeller hub, it
38 in spaced relation relative to the hub extension 14.
will be appreciated that control intelligence will only be
The pinion gear 72 meshes with the rack 52; the pinion
supplied to the linkage means 146 due to rotation of the
gear 74 meshes with the rack 54; and the pinion gear
screw shaft 138 about its own axis relative to the propeller
76 meshes with the rack 56. Accordingly, upon recip
rocation of the condition ring 34, rotation will be im 35 hub.
With reference to FIGURE 4, operation of the control
parted to the pinion gear 72 and its shaft 611 about the
mechanism for transmitting mechanical movement be
axis of the shaft 69. Similarly, upon reciprocation of the
tween relatively movable parts of the propeller assembly
will be described. In FIGURE 4, the reciprocating input
feathering ring 36, rotation will be imparted to the pinion
gear 74 and to the shaft 62, while reciprocation of the
synchronizing ring 38 will impart rotation to the pinion 40 control rod 98 is shown connected to a pivotally mov
able lever 148. Moreover, the control rod 98 is shown
schematically as being directly connected to the bell
crank 82. Upon movement of the lever 148, the control
gear '76 and its shaft 64.
The rings 34, 36 and 38 are formed with integral up
standing shoulders, or tongues, 35, 37 and 39, respec
tively. Since the inputs to the control rings 34, 36 and
rod 98 will pivot the bellcrank 82 so as to effect axial
38 are all identical, it is deemed su?icient to describe 45 movement of the control ring 34. Axial movement of
the control ring 34 will impart rotation to the pinion gear
only one such input. Accordingly, as shown in FIGURE
72 through the rack 52 on one of the ?ngers 40. Rota
1, the tongue 35 on the condition ring 34 is received by
tion of the pinion gear 42 will impart rotation to the
a complementary groove in a shoe 80 attached to one end
rotary shaft 126 through the meshing bevel gears 100 and
of a bellcrank 82. The bellcrank 82 is pivotally sup
106 which will in turn rotate the high lead screw 138 so
ported by an intermediate pin 84 carried by a bracket 86
as to reciprocate the nut 144 within the regulator assem
attached to the bearing housing 16. The bellcrank 82
bly. The nut 144 will, in turn, actuate the control valve
is formed as a clevis with the bracket located between
through the linkage means 146.
It is pointed out that with the improved control mech
spaced portions thereof. The other end of the bellcrank
82 is pivotally connected by a pin 88 to the outer end
of a crank arm 90. The crank arm is attached to a shaft 55
32 extending through the housing 16 and having a second
anism of the present invention, mechanical input signals
can be transmitted between relatively rotatable compo
nents of the propeller assembly through the hub to a
crank arm 94 attached thereto. The outer end of the
front mounted regulator assembly. By mounting the
crank arm 34 is connected by a pin 96 to a reciprocable
regulator assembly in front of the propeller hub, the pro
control rod 98.
It will be apparent that upon reciprocation of the con 60 peller drive can be through the rear thereof thereby ena
bling the propeller assembly to be nose mounted on the
trol rod 98, angular movement will be imparted to the
stationary support structure.
crank 94, the shaft 92 and the crank 90 so as to impart
While the embodiment of the invention as herein dis
angular movement to the bellcrank 82. The bellcrank,
closed constitutes a preferred form, it is to be understood
in turn, will impart rectilinear movement to the control
ring 34 through the shoe 80 which engages the tongue 65 that other forms might be adopted.
What is claimed is as follows:
35 thereof, irrespective of whether the propeller is or is
1. In a variable pitch propeller, the combination in
not rotating. In this manner, control intelligence is trans
cluding, a hub having an annular extension at the rear
mitted between the stationary housing 16 and the rotatable
thereof, a stationary support, bearing means carried by
control ring 34. Control intelligence is imparted to the
control rings 36 and 38 in a similar manner.
said support and rotatably journalling the hub extension
70 therein, a ring encircling said hub extension and con
Referring again to FIGURES 2 and 3, the inner ends
of shafts 6t}, 62 and 64 have bevel gears 1%, 1112 and
104 attached to the inner ends thereof, the bevel gears
16!), 102 and 104 meshing respectively with bevel gears
.106, 1118 and 111) attached to shafts 112, 114 and 116, re 75
nected to rotate therewith although capable of axial move
ment relative thereto, a regulator assembly connected to
the front of said hub for rotation therewith, shaft means
extending axially from said regulator assembly through
3,026,740
5
6
said hub and into said hub extension, said shaft means
to said hub, means extending through said hub extension
operatively interconnecting said ring and said shaft means
for converting axial movement of said ring to rotation
being connected to rotate with said hub and also sup
ported for rotation about its own axis relative to said hub,
a control member disposed within said regulator assem
bly for rotation therewith and having a threaded connec
tion with said shaft means whereby rotation of said shaft
means imparts axial movement to said control member,
of said shaft means, and means carried by said stationary
support and engaging said ring for imparting axial move
ment thereto.
5. In a variable pitch propeller, the combination in
means extending through said ‘hub extension operatively
cluding, a hub having an annular extension at the rear
interconnecting said ring and said shaft means for con
thereof, a stationary support, bearing means carried by
verting axial movement of said ring to rotation of said 10 said support and rotatably journalling the hub extension
shaft means, and a control lever operatively connected
therein, said hub extension having external straight spline
to said ring for imparting axial movement thereto.
teeth, a plurality of rings encircling said hub extension
2. Control mechanism for a variable pitch propeller
and having internal straight spline teeth mating with
of the type having a hub with an annular extension at the
the external straight spline teeth on said hub extension, a
rear thereof, a stationary support, bearing means carried 15 regulator assembly connected to the front of said hub
by said support and rotatably journalling the hub exten
for rotation therewith, a plurality of shaft means equal
sion therein and a regulator assembly attached to the
in number to the number of said rings and extending ax
front of said hub and rotatable therewith, including in
ially from said regulator assembly through said hub and
combination, a ring encircling said hub extension and con
into said hub extension, and means extending through said
nected for rotation therewith although capable of axial 20 hub extension and operatively connecting each ring to
movement relative thereto, means operatively connected
one of said shaft means whereby axial movement of each
to said ring for imparting axial movement thereto, shaft
control ring will impart rotation to its respective shaft
means extending from said regulator through said hub
means relative to said hub.
and into said hub extension, means operatively connecting
6. The combination set forth in claim 5 including
said ring with said shaft means whereby axial movement 25 three axially spaced control rings, each control ring hav~
of said ring will impart rotation to said shaft means rela
ing a plurality of circumferentially spaced axially extend
tive to said hub, and means disposed within said regula
ing ?ngers disposed in nesting relation with the fingers of
tor and operatively connected with said shaft means for
the other two rings, each ?nger having straight spline
performing a control function in response to rotation
teeth mating with the straight spline teeth on said hub
of said shaft means about its axis.
30 extension.
3. In a variable pitch propeller, the combination in
7. The combination set forth in claim 6 wherein one
cluding, a hub having an annular extension at the rear
?nger on each of said rings has a toothed edge consti
thereof, a stationary support, bearing means carried by
tuting a rack.
said support and rotatably journalling the hub extension
8. The combination set forth in claim 7 wherein the
therein, a plurality of axially spaced rings encircling said 35 means connecting each ring to its respective shaft means
hub extension and connected to rotate therewith although
comprises a pinion gear disposed externally of said hub
capable of independent axial movement relative thereto,
extension and engaging one of said racks, a shaft attached
a regulator assembly connected to the front of said hub
to said pinion gear and extending radially through said
for rotation therewith, a plurality of shaft means equal
hub extension, and a pair of bevel gears disposed within
in number to the number of said rings and extending 40 said hub extension, one of said bevel gears being con
axially from said regulator assembly through said hub
nected to said pinion shaft and the other bevel gear
and into said hub extension, said shaft means being con
being "connected to said shaft means.
nected to rotate with said hub and also supported for
9. Control mechanism for a variable pitch propeller
rotation about their respective axes relative to said hub,
of the type having a hub with an annular extension at the
a plurality of control members equal in number to the 45 rear thereof, a stationary support, bearing means carried
number of said shaft means disposed within said regula
by said support for rotatably journalling the hub exten
tor for rotation therewith, each control member having
sion therein and a regulator assembly attached to the
threaded connection with one of said shaft means where
front of said hub and rotatably therewith, including in
by rotation of its respective shaft means imparts axial
combination, a plurality of spaced rings encircling said
movement to one of said control members, means ex
50
hub extension and having straight spline connections
tending through said hub extension and operatively con
therewith so as to be capable of axial movement relative
necting each of said rings with one of said shaft means
for converting axial movement of each ring to rotation
of its respective shaft means, and means operatively con
thereto, a plurality of shaft means equal in number to
the number of said rings extending from said regulator
through said hub and into said hub extension, and means
nected to said rings for imparting axial movement thereto. 55 extending through said hub extension and connecting each
4. In a variable pitch propeller, the combination in
ring with one of said shaft means whereby axial move
cluding, a hub having an annular extension at the rear
ment of each ring will impart rotation to its respective
thereof, a stationary support, bearing means carried by
shaft means relative to said hub.
said support and rotatably journalling the hub extension
10. The combination set forth in claim 9 wherein said
therein, said hub extension having straight spline teeth
thereon, a ring encircling said hub extension and having
straight spline teeth engaged with the straight spline teeth
60 last recited means includes a rack integral with each
ring, pinion means supported externally of said hub ex
tension and engaging said racks, each pinion gear being
connected to a shaft extending radially through said hub
of said hub extension whereby said ring is connected to
extension, and bevel gear means connecting each pinion
rotate with said hub extension although capable of axial
movement relative thereto, a regulator assembly con 65 shaft with its respective shaft means.
nected to the front of said hub for rotation therewith,
References Cited in the file of this patent
shaft means extending axially from said regulator assem
UNITED STATES PATENTS
bly through said hub and into said hub extension, said
shaft means being connected to rotate with said hub and
Parkes ______________ __ Sept. 26, 1922
7 O 1,430,180
also supported for rotation about its own axis relative
2,508,971
schlote -_, ____________ _- May 23, 1950
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