US3135095A - Fluid actuated control system for power steering of outboard motors and the like - Google Patents

Fluid actuated control system for power steering of outboard motors and the like Download PDF

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US3135095A
US3135095A US124095A US12409561A US3135095A US 3135095 A US3135095 A US 3135095A US 124095 A US124095 A US 124095A US 12409561 A US12409561 A US 12409561A US 3135095 A US3135095 A US 3135095A
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cylinder
communication
valve
fluid
actuator
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US124095A
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Harry L Peterson
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WILLIAMSON AND PALMATIER
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    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B63SHIPS OR OTHER WATERBORNE VESSELS; RELATED EQUIPMENT
    • B63HMARINE PROPULSION OR STEERING
    • B63H21/00Use of propulsion power plant or units on vessels
    • B63H21/24Use of propulsion power plant or units on vessels the vessels being small craft, e.g. racing boats
    • B63H21/26Use of propulsion power plant or units on vessels the vessels being small craft, e.g. racing boats of outboard type; Outboard propulsion power units movably installed for steering, reversing, tilting, or the like
    • B63H21/265Steering or control devices for outboards
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F15FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS; HYDRAULICS OR PNEUMATICS IN GENERAL
    • F15BSYSTEMS ACTING BY MEANS OF FLUIDS IN GENERAL; FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS, e.g. SERVOMOTORS; DETAILS OF FLUID-PRESSURE SYSTEMS, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F15B11/00Servomotor systems without provision for follow-up action; Circuits therefor
    • F15B11/08Servomotor systems without provision for follow-up action; Circuits therefor with only one servomotor
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F15FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS; HYDRAULICS OR PNEUMATICS IN GENERAL
    • F15BSYSTEMS ACTING BY MEANS OF FLUIDS IN GENERAL; FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS, e.g. SERVOMOTORS; DETAILS OF FLUID-PRESSURE SYSTEMS, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F15B1/00Installations or systems with accumulators; Supply reservoir or sump assemblies
    • F15B1/26Supply reservoir or sump assemblies
    • F15B1/265Supply reservoir or sump assemblies with pressurised main reservoir
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F15FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS; HYDRAULICS OR PNEUMATICS IN GENERAL
    • F15BSYSTEMS ACTING BY MEANS OF FLUIDS IN GENERAL; FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS, e.g. SERVOMOTORS; DETAILS OF FLUID-PRESSURE SYSTEMS, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F15B11/00Servomotor systems without provision for follow-up action; Circuits therefor
    • F15B11/06Servomotor systems without provision for follow-up action; Circuits therefor involving features specific to the use of a compressible medium, e.g. air, steam
    • F15B11/072Combined pneumatic-hydraulic systems
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F15FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS; HYDRAULICS OR PNEUMATICS IN GENERAL
    • F15BSYSTEMS ACTING BY MEANS OF FLUIDS IN GENERAL; FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS, e.g. SERVOMOTORS; DETAILS OF FLUID-PRESSURE SYSTEMS, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F15B2211/00Circuits for servomotor systems
    • F15B2211/20Fluid pressure source, e.g. accumulator or variable axial piston pump
    • F15B2211/21Systems with pressure sources other than pumps, e.g. with a pyrotechnical charge
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F15FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS; HYDRAULICS OR PNEUMATICS IN GENERAL
    • F15BSYSTEMS ACTING BY MEANS OF FLUIDS IN GENERAL; FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS, e.g. SERVOMOTORS; DETAILS OF FLUID-PRESSURE SYSTEMS, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F15B2211/00Circuits for servomotor systems
    • F15B2211/30Directional control
    • F15B2211/305Directional control characterised by the type of valves
    • F15B2211/3056Assemblies of multiple valves
    • F15B2211/30565Assemblies of multiple valves having multiple valves for a single output member, e.g. for creating higher valve function by use of multiple valves like two 2/2-valves replacing a 5/3-valve
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F15FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS; HYDRAULICS OR PNEUMATICS IN GENERAL
    • F15BSYSTEMS ACTING BY MEANS OF FLUIDS IN GENERAL; FLUID-PRESSURE ACTUATORS, e.g. SERVOMOTORS; DETAILS OF FLUID-PRESSURE SYSTEMS, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F15B2211/00Circuits for servomotor systems
    • F15B2211/30Directional control
    • F15B2211/32Directional control characterised by the type of actuation
    • F15B2211/321Directional control characterised by the type of actuation mechanically
    • F15B2211/324Directional control characterised by the type of actuation mechanically manually, e.g. by using a lever or pedal
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y10TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC
    • Y10TTECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER US CLASSIFICATION
    • Y10T74/00Machine element or mechanism
    • Y10T74/20Control lever and linkage systems
    • Y10T74/20207Multiple controlling elements for single controlled element
    • Y10T74/20213Interconnected
    • Y10T74/20232Marine

Description

June 2, 1964 H. PETERSON 3,135,095
FLUID ACTUATED CONTROL SYSTEM FOR POWER STEERING 0F OUTBOARD MOTORS AND THE LIKE Filed July 14, 1961 I 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 l 29d Z5 I I l I 1 1 l I l 1 1 -5 C flvvavme #421?! L. PETERSON mwwv m June 2, 1964 Filed July 14, 1961 H. L. PETERSON 3,135,095 FLUID ACTUATED CONTROL SYSTEM FOR POWER STEERING OF OUTBOARD MOTORS AND THE LIKE :5 Sheets-Sheet 2 FIG. 2
- #Tmwrm #42271. PETERSON Arrow/Er:
June 2, 1964 H. L. PETERSON 3,135,095
FLUID ACTUATED CONTROL SYSTEM FOR POWER STEERING 0F OUTBOARD MOTORS AND THE LIKE Filed July 14, 1961 5 Sheets-Sheet 3 United States Patent FLUID ACTUATED CONTROL SYSTEM FOR POWER STEERING 0F OUTBOARD MOTORS AND THE LIKE Harry L. Peterson, Williamson and Palmatier,
480 Pillsbury Bldg, Minneapolis, Minn. Filed July 14, 1%1, Ser. No. 124,095 Claims. (Cl. 60-62) This invention relates to a fluid-actuated control system for variable power shifting in opposite directions of an actuating member. The power actuation is controlled by light foot or hand shifting of a swinging or otherwise reciprocable control element which through instantly responsive and eflicient valve mechanism, communicates a source of fluid under pressure to the power actuator in the desired direction and to the extent desired.
While particularly applicable for power steering of an outboard motor it is equally well suited to variably shift an actuator element which may control the operation of a number of different devices. Preferably my invention is employed where a source of mechanical power (rotary or reciprocating) is present for operating or propelling the main device involved. A small amount of power is taken from the primary source to operate a fluid pump or compressor which in turn supplies a source of fluid under pressure to my quickly responsive control valve mechanism which operates the actuator variably as desired through light foot or manual shifting of a control element.
It is therefore a main object of my invention to provide an apparatus or system for variably, power-controlling a shiftable actuator from a removed location by variable application of pressure fluid power through manipulation by light touch of a control element and whereby said control element may be shifted by the operator, leaving his arms and hands free for manipulation of other devices, as when fishing from a boat or simultaneously operating other controls by hand.
Another object is the provision of an eflicient quickly responsive system for very accurately power steering an outboard motor behind a boat, where a source of power is derived from a takeoff on the outboard motor to operate a conveniently mounted fluid pump or compressor which in turn communicates with a sensitively controlled mechanism to selectively, by fluid pressure, power operate an actuator efliciently connected with the upstanding body of the outboard motor to turn the same responsive to variable light pressure applied usually by the foot on a shiftable control element.
Another object is the provision of a fluid, power-control system, combining in close relationship a simple, highly eilicient fluid pump, a selectively controllable efiicient valve structure and a fluid controlled actuator connected with said valve mechanism for variable selective shifting operations through compression and decompression selectively applied by said valve member to an actuating piston or the equivalent.
My invention in its preferred form includes a highly efficient fluid pump operated from a source of rotary power which requires no lubrication; which can be suc cessfully employed in any position; which gives a readily adjustable straight line pull and push action to a diaphragm; and which requires only a minimum number of working parts.
My invention as applied to power steering of an outboard or other marine engine, is selectively controllable by light foot pressure and manipulation, leaving the hands of the operator free. Its construction and components adapt it for use on any type of outboard motor and many inboard steering systems, and for application to all types of boats utilizing outboard motors. Power means for selectively operating the actuator may be air pressure, air vacuum, water or hydraulic fluid.
The foregoing and other objects and advantages of my invention will be more apparent from the following description made in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein like reference characters refer to similar parts and wherein:
FIG. 1 is a top plan view showing an embodiment of my fluid-actuated control system applied for power steering, to a conventional type of outboard motor mounted upon the transom or the stern plate of a small boat;
FIG. 2 is a front elevation showing my actuator unit with some portions broken away to show internal parts and also illustrating the forward end of the outboard motor and its steering connection with the actuator piston rod, as well as a front elevation of the preferred type of diaphragm pump and its mounting upon the top of the outboard motor housing and power connection with the upstanding crank shaft of the motor;
FIG. 3 is a side elevation of said form of my invention assembled;
FIG. 4 is a side elevation of a suitable form of power control unit including a selectively operable fluid control valve and a foot-swingable control element for variably operating said valve responsive to light shifting touch;
FIG. 5 is an end elevation showing the outer end of the valve head and the oscillatory treadle member in neutral position in full lines and in the two opposite operating positions in the dotted lines;
FIG. 6 is a top plan view of the control and valve unit, portions of the treadle member being broken away;
FIG. 7 is a horizontal section on a larger scale taken on the line 7-7 of FIG. 5;
FIG. 8 is an exploded view showing parts and faces of the valve mechanism before assembly;
FIG. 9 is a diagrammatical view showing one embodiment of my entire system; and
FIG. 10 is a detail vertical section on a larger scale taken transversely through my pump operating mecha msm.
Referring now in detail to the form of my invention illustrated, a novel, highly efficient fluid pump of the diaphragm type will be first described with its mounting attachment on the upper housing H of a conventional 0utboard motor M. The motor is attached in conventional form by the clamps C to the transomor stern plate T of a small boat (see FIGS. 1 to 3 inclusive) and is provided with the usual forwardly extending steering tongue S which in most outboards has a swingable rubber grip handle attached thereto. This handle is removed if desired in the attachment of my system.
Secured to the top of the upper housing H of the outboard motor is an integral base plate 15 upon which my pump structure is mounted, as shown said base plate being rigidly secured by a plurality of upstanding bolts 15a threaded at their lower ends into suitably tapped sockets formed in the engine head or suitable metal construction or reinforcement of housing H. A rigid supporting sleeve 16 is welded at its lower end or otherwise rigidly affixed to base plate 15 and has rigidly attached to the upper end thereof, a rectangular substantially horizontal support plate 17 upon which stroke-adjustable reciprocable mechanism is mounted for actuation by an eccentrically positioned cam disc 18 rotatably affixed to the upper end of the main crank shaft 19 of the outboard motor through the intermediary of an enlarged concentric disc 20. A rectangular yoke 21 is slidably mounted for reciprocation between two sets of opposed rollers 22, each set as shown comprising a pair of such rollers, having as shown smooth peripheral edges which fit with working clearance longitudinal grooves 21a provided in the side edges of the rectangular yoke 21. Rollers 22 have ball bearing mountings which are aflixed to upstanding anchoring bolts 23 provided at their upper threaded ends with securing nuts 23a. The reciprocating yoke 21 is thus positioned and guided for rapid horizontal reciprocation as shown and with substantial elimination of friction and such mounting means require no lubrication. The yoke 21 is centrally apertured to provide a cam track 21b, the working portion of which is at the left of the aperture portion of yoke 21, as viewed in FIG. 1 having a straight rear and medial edge tangentially joining arcuate corner portions 210 as shown. The upstanding cam disc 18 peripherally engages the straight rear edge of the cam track 2112 in its eccentric or planetary movement, thereby efliciently retracting yoke 21 rearwardly from the positon shown in FIG. 1. Forward movement of yoke 21 (to the right as shown in FIG. 1) is adjustably limited by a longitudinally extending threaded bolt 21x fixed to the rear end of yoke 21 and which works through an aperture in an upstanding angle bracket 21y. A wing nut Zlz engages the projecting end of said bolt and may be tightened to withdraw the yoke to the left as seen in FIG. 1, a suflicient distance to disconnect the yoke from driving engagement with the cam 18. This is sometimes desirable to disconnect the device when the outboard motor is run at very high speed.
Yoke 21 is actuated forwardly by its connection with the reciprocating part of the pump. The forward end of the yoke 21 centrally carries an adjustable actuating shaft 24 which as shown projects horizontally and is axially aflixed to the reinforcing boss 25a of a diaphragm 25 of conventional type used in diaphragm air pumps. The air pump indicated as an entirety by the letter P is of split housing construction and has an outer header 26 provided with a discharge 26a. The base of pump P is suitably mounted upon a block 27 which in turn is aflixed by a pair of bolts 27a to the outer portion of the base plate 15. The discharge 26a of the air pump communicates as shown through a flexible conduit 28 with the intake fitting 23a of an accumulator tank 23, as shown of elongated cylindrical construction, and having closed circular ends 29b.
An actuator cylinder 31 in the form of my invention shown is rigidly secured as by strapping clamps 30 to the accumulator tank 29 being disposed below said tank and as shown in equal length therewith, but substantially smaller diameter. An actuator piston 32 is reciprocably mounted within the cylindrical interior of actuator cylinder 31 having smooth sealed engagement therewith and carries the elongated actuator rod 33 which projects through a suitable packing gland 34 mounted on the inner or right hand end of the actuating cylinder, as viewed in FIGS. 1 and 2. The actuator rod 33 as shown in FIG. 1 has adjustable connection with an extension link 33a of tubular form, which in turn has a rod extremity 33b at its inner end clamped to a bracket 35 which at its lower end houses the ball of a ball and socket connection 35a, the ball member terminating at its lower end (see FIG. 2) in an attachment bolt 35b which is clamped by a nut 36 to the forward portion of the steering tongue S of the outboard motor.
The actuator unit including the accumulator tank 29 and actuator cylinder 31 is mounted for oscillation on the substantially vertical axis by a small turntable 37a which rotates on a pin 37b aflixed to a mounting disc 37 (see FIGS. 2 and 3), which is rigidly secured to the upper edge of a C-clamp 38 having the clamping jaws 38a and 38b with the jaw 38b having threadedly connected therewith the clamping bolt 39 carrying on its inner end a swivel clamp disc 39a and turned by means of a handle 3%. As shown in the drawings the clamp 38 is widely adjustable to accommodate gunwales of boats varying substantially in thickness. The small turntable 37a carries a pair of widely spaced, upstanding ears 370 (see FIG. 3) between which a threaded pivot pin 4%) swivelly connects a pivot sleeve 41 aflixed transversely to the bottom of the actuator cylinder at its medial portion. The clamp 38 as shown is adapted to secure the actuator unit for swivel movement 4 on a transverse horizontal axis and also for limited oscillation on a substantially vertical axis through the intermediary of the turntable 37a and its related parts and the intermediary of the swivel pin 40 and pivot sleeve 41.
Fluid pressure with my system or apparatus, or decompression may be applied to either end of the actuator piston 32 selectively controlled by a highly efiicient valve mechanism V, later to be described in detail. When pressure is appllied to one side of the actuator piston 32, the interior of the cylinder at the opposite side thereof is communicated with valve V for decompression. In the form of the invention illustrated where the actuator is powered by air, each end of the actuator cylinder isprovided with two air fittings or nipples. Thus the left hand end 31a of actuator cylinder 31 is provided with an air inlet nipple 31b and a decompression or air discharge nipple 310. The right hand end 31d of actuator cylinder 31 is provided with air inlet nipple 31c and an air discharge or decompression nipple 31 These nipples are all connected by flexible conduits to the appropriate passages for interconnection and communication, later to be described in my eflicient valve mechanism V.
While a number of valving and conduit systems V may be employed to successfully control and power my actuator mechanism, I have illustrated in the accompanying drawings a compact and readily portable unit which combines suitable valve mechanism with a shiftable control element readily responsive to light human touch, as by foot operation. This unit illustrated in FIGS. 4 to 7 inclusive of the drawings, may be readily positioned at a point removed from the actuator unit, as for example in the waist or forward portion of a boat, when my system is employed for power steering. A plurality of flexible conduits interconnect as shown, related passages or ports at the two ends of the actuator cylinder 31 with corresponding passages in a stationary head 42 of valve mechanism V, and also supply air under pressure from tank 29 to two intake passages of the valve mechanism. Stationary valve head 42 as shown, is circularly recessed at its inner end to provide a shallow chamber having a planar circular face 42x for seating against an oscillatory valving disc 43, later to be described in detail. A series of ports, hereafter to be described, communicate through circular face 42x and are circumferentially spaced thereon, each communicating with an extension of the overall passage which in turn passes through the body portion of head 42, terminating in a fitting or nipple for connection with its appropriate conduit. In the diagrammatic view FIG. 9, the ports in dotted lines are viewed in the relationship assumed when looking from the outer end of the valve head while in the exploded view 8 the valve head has been turned and is viewed from the circularly recessed chamber with the face 42x exposed.
Thus, in the form shown (see FIGS. 1 and 9) a conduit C-l connects a discharge passage 29c at the left end of the air accumulator tank with air supply inlet 42a of said valve head.
A second flexible conduit 02, as shown, connects the air intake passage 3111 at the left end of the actuator cylinder with the air discharge passage 42b disposed as shown in FIGS. 1, 8 and 9 in close relation to the air inlet port 42a. A third flexible conduit C-3 connects the outlet or decompression port 310 at the left end of the actuator cylinder with the air outlet or decompression passage 420 of the valve head 42. The decompression passages in the actuator cylinder ends and in the valve head are preferably of larger diameter than the air supply passages to increase the efliciency of my system.
It will be noted in the form of valve mechanism illustrated as exemplary, that corresponding passages are symmetrically disposed on right and left sides of the stationary valve head 42. A fourth flexible conduit C-4 connects an air discharge port 29d at the right end of accumulator tank 29 with an air supply passages 42d in the valve head 42. Another flexible conduit C-5 connects the air supply passage 31e at the right 'end of actuator cylinder 31 with the air discharge passage 42e disposed closely above the air inlet passage 42d on valve head 42. A sixth conduit C-6 connects the air outlet or decompression passage 31f at the right end of the actuator cylinder with the decompression passage 42 disposed near the bottom portion of the circular face of the valve head 42.
An oscillatory valving disc 43 is coaxially mounted with the valve head 42, being keyed or otherwise afiixed to the enlarged portion 44a of a stub shaft 44. Valving disc 43 has a passage-communication face 43x which fits flush against the circular face 42x of valve head 42. On said face 43x two shallow arcuate communication grooves are formed, identified by the numbers 43a and 43b respectively, and extending concentrically of said face. The groove 43a is of a length to span and interconnect the ports or passages 42a and 42b in the valve head 42 when disc 43 is turned through a pantial revolution (as shown, about 18 from neutral) in one direction. The arcuate groove 4% is similarly formed, being concentric to the valving disc 43 and of a length to nicely span and intercommunicate the passages 42d and 421? when the disc 43 is turned from neutral position through the same angulation in the opposite direction.
A third and somewhat wider but shorter, shallow communication groove 430 is formed in the lower face 432: of the valving disc, for selective communication with either of the decompression 420 or 42 formed in the stationary valve head. As shown, groove 43c is disposed medially of the intercommunicating grooves 43a and 43b and will register with the decompression passage 420 at the same time that communication groove 42a spans and 'interconnects the ports or passages 42a and 42d. Likewise, when the wider decompression groove 430 communicates or registers with the decompression passage 42f, communication groove 43b simultaneously communicates and interconnects the passages 42]) and 42a of the stationary valve head 42. i
To limit oscillation of the valve disc 43, a projecting pin 44 is carried near the upper portion of the face 42x, working in a confining arcuate slot 45, which is formed through the upper portion of the valve disc 43. The ends of said slot, with contacting pin 44 limits oscillation in both directions. A thick closure cap 46 for the valve mechanism, has a smooth planar inner face 46x which is adapted to contact the frame or peripheral portion of the stationary valve head 42, and be secured as by a plurality of threaded bolts 47 thereto. A pair of diametricaily disposed passages 46a and 46b are formed through cap member 46, having mounted therein springs 48 which press against ball members 49, said ball members engaging against the outermost, generally planar face 43y of the valving disc to perform two functions, to wit, first to equally apply pressure inwardly against the disc to cause the same to seat very flush and smoothly for sealed relation against the planar face 42x of the valve head, and secondly to cooperate (see FIG. 8) with small circular depressions 431 which are diametrically disposed on the face 43y of the valve disc to locate and retain the disc in neutral position. The pressure on springs 48 is adjustable by two threaded plug members X which threadedly engage the tapped ends of the passages 46a and 4612.
A swinging or oscillatable treadle member 50 is mounted upon elongated base plate 51 which serves also as the mounting for the valve mechanism V at one end thereof. Treadle member 50 is of elongated, rectangular shape, having as shown a depending flange 5011i As shown near the ends thereof, it is provided with rigidly secured, depending ears 5%, which are mounted for swinging on a horizontal axis parallel to the base plate 51. As shown, the rear ear 50b is pivoted by a nutted bolt 51a upon an upstanding angle bracket 52, which is secured to the base plate 51. Near its forward end, the forward ear 59b of the treadle 50 is adjustably affixed to a trunnion sleeve 53 which is pivotally connected with the upstanding arm of an angle bracket 54, also fixed to base plate 51. The trunnion sleeve 53 has a socket with a pin 53a therein which engages, drivably, with the slot 44b of the stub shaft 44 for driving or oscillating the valving disc 43. A strong coil spring 55 interconnects one end of the treadle with the base plate and is tensioned so that when the plate is swung from neutral position in either direction the tension will return or tend to return the plate to its normal neutral position.
To nicely accommodate and compact the several flexible conduits C1 to C6 inclusive, I prefer to arrange them and contain them side-by-side throughout their intermediate portions, in a tubular insulated flexible housing or harness Y, as illustrated in FIG. 1, which may be constructed of a tough flexible plastic material such as polyethylene. I prefer to relieve pressure between the faces 42x and 43x of the valve parts by forming a small outlet or vent bore 42z (see FIG. 8) through valv head 42.
Operation From the foregoing description the operation of my system or apparatus may be obvious, but will be briefly described as follows:
With the actuator unit including the actuator cylinder 31 and tank 29 installed in proper relation to the power driven device such as an outboard motor, the actuator rod is properly connected with extension linkage 33 which in turn is connected by releasable ball and socket connection with the element 36b affixed to the steering tongue of the motor. The ball-equipped element 351: fits a socket in the extremity portion of the extension 33 which has a light spring completing a socket, but susceptible to release if the motor is suddenly jarred by striking of the main underwater housing with an object, thus releasing the control. The pressure gauge 60 may be connected with one end of the accumulator tank, for obvious purposes.
With the valve mechanism and control unit mounted at a point removed from the actuator and the power driven device to be actuated, the base plate 51 of such unit may be supported upon the floor or deck of the boat in convenient position for the treadle plate 50 to be oscillated on its longitudinal axes by tilting of the foot in one or the other directions, with light touch. Turning or swinging of the treadle plate 50 in the one direction turns the stub shaft 44 rigidly interconnected with valving disc 42 to its extreme position wherein two of the related ports for communication of air pressure, vacuum or other fluid medium is taken from the source of fluid under pressure shown as the tank 29 and communicated within the actuator cylinder 31 against one side of the piston 32. Simultaneously the decompression groove 430 is in communication with the decompression port 42c or 42f as the case may be, for communication through either conduit 0-?) or C-6 with the opposite side of the actuator cylinder, thereby venting air and giving decompression on the opposite side of the cylinder from that actuated by the positive force. This simultaneously applied decompression and pressure actuation makes my actuator piston rod very responsive to the light human control. When actuator piston 32 is moved to the right as viewed in FIG. 2, it will shift the outboard motor through connection with its tongue 35, turning the main assembly of the outboard motor and its rudder portion to swing the boat and power turn the same in a starboard direction.
When the shiftable control unit, as, shown comprising the treadle plate 50 is swung or shifted by oscillation in the opposite direction the other communication ports of the stationary head 42 are placed in communication by one of the arcuate communication grooves (either 43a or 43b) of the oscillatory valving disc 43, thereby apply piston 32 and its rod 33 to the left, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, and turning the outboard in the opposite direction. Simultaneously with such action decompression is made available to the left hand side of the cylinder 31 and the piston 32, making the actuator readily responsive to the light human control.
It is to be understood that the turning of valve disc 43, while intercommunicating the passages, as previously recited, simultaneously closes and shuts olT communication of the alternative pressure discharge and decompression passages. This is readily ascertainable from study of the exploded view, FIG. 8.
With my improved structure and the simultaneous decompression connection with one end of the cylinder while the piston is actuated by fluid pressure connected to the opposite end and with my high responsive valve mechanism and treadle control, the actuator rod 32 responsive to foot control, can be controlled to slowly creep from one extreme position to another or by a fast shifting of the treadle the actuator may be moved to full position instantly, or on the other hand by proper foot control, the actuator rod may be moved slowly to only a portion of its full stroke in either direction. Thus through light human touch as by the foot, a very eflicient and variable control is provided.
While I have illustrated the preferred form of my invention it will be understood that many alternatives in the conduit and valve system may be substituted, all withing the scope of my invention. Also, with the same apparatus and mechanism illustrated and described another form of my invention may be practiced, requiring only two conduits communicating the valve mechanism with the actuator cylinder. I have reduced this form to practice and successfully used the same on the same apparatus, and will now describe this form of system.
The actuator tank 29 is connected at each of its ends with the fluid intake passages 31b and 312 of the actuator cylinder so that communication of fluid pressure is always present when the device or outboard motor is operated. However, the passage communicating with the two ends of cylinder 31 are restricted by suitable orifices or any restrictive medium. The piston 32 is thus balanced by opposing pressures in cylinder 31 until actuation is desired. The decompression passages 31c and 31 at opposite ends of cylinder 31 are connected with the valving mechanism precisely as shown in my preferred form and the valve is consequently utilized only for controlling alternate decompression at one or the other ends of the cylinder. Thus with my control and with the larger decompression outlets 310 and 31 as contrasted with the very restricted fluid inlets to the cylinder ends, the restricted pressure with the fast decompression at the opposite side of piston 32 will, by power, move the actuating piston 32 and the actuator rod 33.
From the foregoing description it will be seen that I have provided a system or apparatus for variably, powerc'ontrolling a shiftable actuator from a removed location,
, which may be variously and sensitively controlled by light foot or human touch on a shiftable control element. My invention is particularly applicable in use with a power driven device such as an outboard motor to precisely control the steering or shifting thereof from a remote point, but is also applicable for control power shifting of various mechanisms and media.
It will of course be understood that various changes may be made in the form, details, arrangement and proportions of the parts without departing from the scope of my invention.
What is claimed is:
1. In a fluid-actuated control system, a source of gaseous medium such as air under pressure, a power-actuator including a cylinder and the piston mounted therein, a piston rod extending through one end of said cylinder and having sealed relation with said rod, said rod constituting an actuating element, the end portions of said cylinder having fluid passages therein for transmitting fluid pressure to opposite sides of said piston, means for communicating said source of fluid with said fluid passages, a decompression fluid passage in each of the end portions of said cylinder, a valve mechanism having a decompression passage therein for selective connection and communication with each of said cylinder decompression passages and having a shiftable valving element for simultaneously interconnecting one of said decompression passages of said cylinder with a discharge to atmosphere while maintaining the opposite decompression passage of said cylinder in closed relation, said valve mechanism having a stationary head provided with a plurality of spaced fluid passages, all terminating in substantially a common surface and connected respectively with said previously recited fluid passages for transmitting fluid pressure such as air to opposite sides of said piston and including also at least a pair of decompression passage and an oscillatory valving element having a smooth passage-communicating face provided with a plurality of spaced grooves for cooperation with the ends of said passages, said face being smoothly engageable in sealed relation with said common surface of said head and resilient media for substantially uniformly urging said oscillatory valve element against the said face of said head, said media including spring-urged ball members, the inner ends of which engage the side of said oscillatory member opposite from said smooth passage-communicating face and a plurality of detents for engagement with said ball members to index neutral position thereof and means for limiting oscillation of said valving element in both directions.
2. A fluid-actuated control system for selectively power-shifting a power driven device such as an outboard motor, having in combination a small fluid pump driven from said power driven device, a power-actuator including a cylinder and a piston mounted therein, a piston rod extending through one end of said cylinder and connections between said piston rod and said power driven device for shifting the latter in opposite directions, a compact, portable valve mechanism and control unit removed from said actuator cylinder and including a common base and a reciprocably swingable plate having connected therewith a journaled shaft common to said control and to said valve mechanism, said valve mechanism comprising a stationary head having passage means in communication with said source of fluid under pressure and having fluid discharge passages, one for communication with one end of said actuator cylinder and another for communication with the opposite end of said actuator cylinder, and also having a pair of decompression passages, one for communication with one end portion of said cylinder and another for communication with the opposite end portion of said cylinder, said valve mechanism also including an oscillatory disc aflixed to said common shaft and having communication passages for simultaneously interconnecting and communicating said source of fluid with one of said fluid discharge passages While shutting off communication between the other fluid discharge passage and also simultaneously connecting and communicating said decompression passage for the opposite ends of said actuator cylinder while closing off communication with said decompression passage to the first mentioned end of said cylinder, said swingable plate, interconnected shaft and valve disc being readily oscillatable in unison by human touch such as foot pressure.
3. The structure set forth in claim 2, and flexible conduits for interconnecting respectively, the said decompression passages of said valve mechanism with corresponding decompression passages in the opposite ends of said cylinder and for interconnecting respectively, the said fluid discharge passages of said valve head with corresponding fluid entrance passages in the opposite end portions of said cylinder.
9 1g 4. The structure set forth in claim 2 and a mounting References Cited in the file of this patent for said actuator cylinder having provision for oscilla- UNITED STATES PATENTS tion of said cylinder on a substantially vertical axis and also provision for tilting of said cylinder on a substan- 2,239,832 Dal/{S P 29, 1941 tially horizontal axis extending perpendicularly to said 5 2,331,046 Roblnson 5, 1943 first mentioned axis, 0 9 Ag r Mar. 21, 1944 5. The structure set forth in claim 2, and said con- 215541843 staflde Mali 29, 1951 nections between said piston rod and said power driven 2,612,142 Sm1th P 30, 1952 device including a releasable coupling element which 2,952,243 Dunmng P' 1960 becomes uncoupled if said power driven device is sud- 1 3,014,499 Barksdale 1961 denly moved in a direction generally transverse to the line of shifting thereof through said actuator.

Claims (1)

  1. 2. A FLUID-ACTUATED CONTROL SYSTEM FOR SELECTIVELY POWER-SHIFTING A POWER DRIVEN DEVICE SUCH AS AN OUTBOARD MOTOR, HAVING IN COMBINATION A SMALL FLUID PUMP DRIVEN FROM SAID POWER DRIVEN DEVICE, A POWER-ACTUATOR INCLUDING A CYLINDER AND A PISTON MOUNTED THEREIN, A PISTON ROD EXTENDING THROUGH ONE END OF SAID CYLINDER AND CONNECTIONS BETWEEN SAID PISTON ROD AND SAID POWER DRIVEN DEVICE FOR SHIFTING THE LATTER IN OPPOSITE DIRECTIONS, A COMPACT, PORTABLE VALVE MECHANISM AND CONTROL UNIT REMOVED FROM SAID ACTUATOR CYLINDER AND INCLUDING A COMMON BASE AND A RECIPROCABLY SWINGABLE PLATE HAVING CONNECTED THEREWITH A JOURNALED SHAFT COMMON TO SAID CONTROL AND TO SAID VALVE MECHANISM, SAID VALVE MECHANISM COMPRISING A STATIONARY HEAD HAVING PASSAGE MEANS IN COMMUNICATION WITH SAID SOURCE OF FLUID UNDER PRESSURE AND HAVING FLUID DISCHARGE PASSAGES, ONE FOR COMMUNICATION WITH ONE END OF SAID ACTUATOR CYLINDER AND ANOTHER FOR COMMUNICATION WITH THE OPPOSITE END OF SAID ACTUATOR CYLINDER, AND ALSO HAVING A PAIR OF DECOMPRESSION PASSAGES, ONE FOR COMMUNICATION WITH ONE END PORTION OF SAID CYLINDER AND ANOTHER FOR COMMUNICATION WITH THE OPPOSITE END PORTION OF SAID CYLINDER, SAID VALVE MECHANISM ALSO INCLUDING AN OSCILLATORY DISC AFFIXED TO SAID COMMON SHAFT AND HAVING COMMUNICATION PASSAGES FOR SIMULTANEOUSLY INTERCONNECTING AND COMMUNICATING SAID SOURCE OF FLUID WITH ONE OF SAID FLUID DISCHARGE PASSAGES WHILE SHUTTING OFF COMMUNICATION BETWEEN THE OTHER FLUID DISCHARGE PASSAGE AND ALSO SIMULTANEOUSLY CONNECTING AND COMMUNICATING SAID DECOMPRESSION PASSAGE FOR THE OPPOSITE ENDS OF SAID ACTUATOR CYLINDER WHILE CLOSING OFF COMMUNICATION WITH SAID DECOMPRESSION PASSAGE TO THE FIRST MENTIONED END OF SAID CYLINDER, SAID SWINGABLE PLATE, INTERCONNECTED SHAFT AND VALVE DISC BEING READILY OSCILLATABLE IN UNISON BY HUMAN TOUCH SUCH AS FOOT PRESSURE.
US124095A 1961-07-14 1961-07-14 Fluid actuated control system for power steering of outboard motors and the like Expired - Lifetime US3135095A (en)

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US30149763 US3270673A (en) 1961-07-14 1963-08-12 Fluid pressure system and control means thereof

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Cited By (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4483682A (en) * 1982-10-12 1984-11-20 Outboard Marine Corporation Linear power assist mechanism
FR2627743A1 (en) * 1985-09-25 1989-09-01 Outboard Marine Corp MARINE PROPULSION DEVICE COMPRISING HYDRAULIC SUPPORT MEANS
FR2633246A1 (en) * 1985-07-03 1989-12-29 Outboard Marine Corp ASSISTED STEERING SYSTEM FOR MARINE PROPULSION DEVICE AND PUMP USABLE IN SUCH A SYSTEM
US5057043A (en) * 1989-06-07 1991-10-15 Kayaba Industry Co. Ltd. Power steering system for boat
US5228405A (en) * 1991-03-15 1993-07-20 Mer-Tech Inc. Power steering system
US5471907A (en) * 1992-01-03 1995-12-05 Kobelt Manufacturing Co. Ltd. Marine steering apparatus

Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2239882A (en) * 1939-08-18 1941-04-29 Oilgear Co Control for hydrodynamic machines
US2331046A (en) * 1940-09-30 1943-10-05 Vickers Inc Power transmission
US2344913A (en) * 1942-04-16 1944-03-21 William E Ager Valve
US2554843A (en) * 1945-07-31 1951-05-29 Olive Bertha Staude Proportional pressure doubleacting power amplifier
US2612142A (en) * 1949-04-23 1952-09-30 Samuel V Smith Pump jack valve control mechanism
US2952243A (en) * 1958-12-24 1960-09-13 Elmer D Dunning Fluid pressure operated steering system
US3014499A (en) * 1959-02-24 1961-12-26 Lilburn S Barksdale Rotary valve

Patent Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2239882A (en) * 1939-08-18 1941-04-29 Oilgear Co Control for hydrodynamic machines
US2331046A (en) * 1940-09-30 1943-10-05 Vickers Inc Power transmission
US2344913A (en) * 1942-04-16 1944-03-21 William E Ager Valve
US2554843A (en) * 1945-07-31 1951-05-29 Olive Bertha Staude Proportional pressure doubleacting power amplifier
US2612142A (en) * 1949-04-23 1952-09-30 Samuel V Smith Pump jack valve control mechanism
US2952243A (en) * 1958-12-24 1960-09-13 Elmer D Dunning Fluid pressure operated steering system
US3014499A (en) * 1959-02-24 1961-12-26 Lilburn S Barksdale Rotary valve

Cited By (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4483682A (en) * 1982-10-12 1984-11-20 Outboard Marine Corporation Linear power assist mechanism
FR2633246A1 (en) * 1985-07-03 1989-12-29 Outboard Marine Corp ASSISTED STEERING SYSTEM FOR MARINE PROPULSION DEVICE AND PUMP USABLE IN SUCH A SYSTEM
FR2627743A1 (en) * 1985-09-25 1989-09-01 Outboard Marine Corp MARINE PROPULSION DEVICE COMPRISING HYDRAULIC SUPPORT MEANS
US5057043A (en) * 1989-06-07 1991-10-15 Kayaba Industry Co. Ltd. Power steering system for boat
US5228405A (en) * 1991-03-15 1993-07-20 Mer-Tech Inc. Power steering system
US5471907A (en) * 1992-01-03 1995-12-05 Kobelt Manufacturing Co. Ltd. Marine steering apparatus

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