US3561612A - Railway car coupler centering devices - Google Patents

Railway car coupler centering devices Download PDF

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Publication number
US3561612A
US3561612A US3561612DA US3561612A US 3561612 A US3561612 A US 3561612A US 3561612D A US3561612D A US 3561612DA US 3561612 A US3561612 A US 3561612A
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Prior art keywords
coupler
shank
member
underframe
spring
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Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Expired - Lifetime
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Inventor
Thomas La Boda
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NATIONAL CASTINGS Inc A CORP OF
Midland-Ross Corp
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Midland-Ross Corp
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    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B61RAILWAYS
    • B61GCOUPLINGS; DRAUGHT AND BUFFING APPLIANCES
    • B61G7/00Details or accessories
    • B61G7/10Mounting of the couplings on the vehicle

Abstract

A car coupler centering device for railway cars including a pivotally mounted spring loaded arm supported cantilever-fashion to the car underframe and underneath the shank of a railway car and moves both radially in a horizontal plane and vertically with respect to the shank of the coupler. This device includes a spring loaded arm movable about a pivot point which is forwardly of the coupler pivot point and in the direction of the coupler head. The device is mounted independently of the coupler so that when the coupler shank is moved transversely it will effect a foreshortening of the spring, thus further compressing the spring. This increased applied spring load is transferred to an offset reaction point according to the direction of the coupler shank displacement from its central or neutral position.

Description

United States Patent [72] Inventor Thomas La Boda Chesterland, Ohio [21] Appl. No. 785,167 {22] Filed Dec. 19, 1968 [45] Patented Feb. 9, 1971 [73] Assignee Midland-Ross Corporation Cleveland, Ohio a corporation of Ohio [54] RAILWAY CAR COUPLER CENTERING DEVICES 2 Claims, 8 Drawing Figs.

[52] US. Cl 213/20 [51] B61g7/10 [50] Field olSearch 213/12, 16, 19, 20, 21,60, 61

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,852,810 4/1932 Kjolseth 213/20 2,469,118 5/1949 Kinneetal 213/19 2,687,218 8/1954 Johnson Jr 213/21 2,754,978 7/1956 Metzger 213/20 3,438,512 4/1969 Metzger et al. 213/20 3,445,005 5/1969 Kulieke Jr. et al. 213/20 Primary Examiner-Drayton E. Hoffman Attorneys- Henry Kozak and Woodrow W. Portz ABSTRACT: A car coupler centering device for railway cars including a pivotally mounted spring loaded arm supported cantilever-fashion to the car underframe and underneath the shank of a railway car and moves both radially in a horizontal plane and vertically with respect to the shank of the coupler. This device includes a spring loaded arm movable about a pivot point which is forwardly of the coupler pivot point and in the direction of the coupler head. The device is mounted independently of the coupler so that when the coupler shank is moved transversely it will effect a foreshortening of the spring,

thus further compressing the spring. This increased applied spring load is transferred to an offset: reaction point according to the direction of the coupler shank displacement from its central or neutral position.

' PATENTEDFEB 9 Ian SHEETIUFS JAL IN VEN TOR. THOMAS LA BODA ATTORNEY PATENTEDFEH 9L9?! 35611612 suznaurs INVENTOR. THOMAS LA BODA ATTORNEY PATENTEDFEBQISYI 3561.612

SHEETQUF 3 INVENTOR.

THOMAS LA BODA BY ,WM

ATTOR N EY RAILWAY CAR COUPLER CENTERING DEVICES BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The requirement for longer cars with greater length of the overhang beyond the center line of the trucks, then has been normal building practice, creates a problem in compensating for the limited gathering range of standard couplers. The extension of the overhang of the car body requires that the shanks of the couplers be longer, thus necessitating a greater range of lateral movement of the shanks relative to the associated coupler carrieniron. Thus some means must be provided to maintain the coupler head within its gathering range so that the cars may be automatically coupled.

Prior art devices concentrate coupler centering devices adjaeent the striker casting, or coupler carrier-iron, and when so located these devices must be of sufficient length in the transverse direction of the car to accommodate the greater range of lateral movement of the shanks of the coupler. The initial installation cost, design and maintenance problems involved are such that they are materially objectionable.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION A principal object of the invention is to provide a mechanism for centering automatically a railway car coupler, especially a coupler having an extra long shank, which is of rugged, simplified, trouble-free design, and which may be manufactured at comparable or less cost than other designs now commercially available.

Another object of the invention is to provide a mechanism which may be mounted independently of the coupler, yet in confining relation, and which will increase the inertial resistance to movement of the coupler shank from central or neutral movement.

A still further object of the invention is to provide elements within the mechanism disposed along the coupler shank to assure a spring force to return the coupler shank to central or neutral position within the center sill of the underframe of a railway vehicle.

The aboveand other objects which may become apparent herein are achieved in a coupler centering mechanism affixed to the underframe of a railway vehicle of which its principal features are a cantilever arm pivotally attached to the underframe and generally along a longitudinal vertical plane of the vehicle with a rearward portion of the arm resiliently yieldable in both horizontal directions from its neutral position and also yieldable downwardly from its neutral position. The arm is resiliently urged rearwardly'by a supporting spring into mating engagement with a pair of laterally spaced pivot points disposed on opposite sides of the longitudinal vertical plane of the vehicle. With the provision of an associated shank confining portion on the cantilever arm, lateral movement of the coupler shank urges the cantilever arm forwardly to compress the supporting spring, which in turn exerts a (centering) force upon the coupler shank to return the shank to its central position. A lever release system is provided to deflect the arm downwardly, thereby allowing the coupler to move freely of a confining portion of the centering mechanism arm.

The integral rearward portion of the centering arm mechanism has spaced vertical grooves facing toward a base plate having matching vertically spaced ribs which are provided to function as offset spring reaction points when the spring loaded arm is moved transversely. The matching ribs and grooves, of course, are used alternatively depending on the direction of transverse movement of the spring loaded arm.

FIGURE DESCRIPTION FIG. 1 is a fragmentary plan view of the centering mechanism showing the associated underframe car parts with the top portion of the center still removed for clarity. The coupler shank is shown in phantom to more clearly depict the centering mechanism including the spring loaded arm and spring reaction points with the spring under initial tension;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged elevational view of the assembly of the centering mechanism with a portion of the coupler shank shown to properly locate this device under the shank of the coupler;

FIG. 3 is a fragmental elevation view showing associated car parts with the centering mechanism arm in vertically depressed position;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary view ofthe centering mechanism of FIG. 1, except that the centering mechanism is shown in laterally deflected position;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged view of the spring reaction points taken on line 5-5 of FIG. 2, with the mounting plate added.

FIGS. 6, 7 and 8 are the top, elevation and side views of the pivot plate element of the centering mechanism. showing the necessary relief or clearances for the proper operation of the centering mechanism arm when moved transversely or vertically.

DETAIL DESCRIPTION Referring now in detail to the drawings, in which like reference characters designate like parts, the improved coupler centering device is generally shown as at 10. The underframe structure generally shown as at 11 consists of a double type Z-section as at 12 and I3 terminating inwardly of the end of the car and connected to divergent portions 14 and 15 forming an A-frame structure when connected by a cross element 16 which functions as a coupler carrier iron. Placed upon cross element 16 below the coupler shank I8 is wear plate 17. The coupler head is shown as at 20.

The coupler centering mechanism generally shown as at 10 comprises a cantilever arm 21 pivotally and conveniently mounted under coupler shank 18 to a base element 22 by pin 23. A spring 24 is mounted in initiall compression between a spring pocket seat 25 on rear web 26 of arm 21 and a spring retainer plate 28 as shown in FIG. 2. Plate 28 is adjustably mounted on a tie bolt 27 and is retained by a nut 29 threaded onto the end of the bolt to permit application of the desired amount of initial compression to the spring.

Tie bolt 27 is formed at one end as .a clevis with the usual openings 36 and 37 to receive pin 23 which also passes through an aperture in tongue 38 of pivot piece 39 placed within base element 22, forming a pivoted connection. Base element 22 has an opening 40 which is smaller than opening 41 in underframe element 43 forming a land to properly locate head 42 of tongue 38 so that the openings in clevis 35 will match or be in alignment to receive pin 23. Base element 22 is rigidly affixed to underframe element 43 in order to rigidly mount resilient arm mechanism 10 and also to secure pivot tongue 38 in operational position.

Rear web 26 of arm 21 has spaced apart vertical grooves 45 and 46 which when arm 21 is in neutral position, as shown in FIG. I, will overlap and be in registry with ribs 47 and 48 of base element 22. This structure, when at this position is resiliently urged rearwardly by spring 24 acting on rear web 26 when tie bolt 27 is pivotally mounted to tongue 38. This spring force assures registry of grooves 45 and 46 with ribs 47 and 48.

It will be noticed that when shank I8 is moved transversely as shown in FIG. 4 rear web 26 moves forward toward spring retaining plate 28 pivots about fixedl rib 47 of base 22, thus compressing spring 24 and creating a spring force enabling web 25 to return to neutral position and shown in FIG. 1. Web 25 being integral with arm 21 having a shank confining structure forming a forward end portion of arm 2I with then cause the shank 18 to return to neutral position.

Ribs 47 and 48 are relieved as at 49 and 50 respectively, while the lower rearwardly facing portion of web 26 is tapered downwardly and forwardly to provide operating clearance when arm 21 is moved vertically as shown in FIG. 3. It will be further noted that tongue 38 is relieved as at 52 and 53 to permit vertical movement of the arms of clevis 35.

To complete the details of an operational device cantilever arm 21 is provided with a cam follower portion 60 which is positioned below the general plane of arm 21 and associated therewith is a cam element 61 of a crank member generally shown as at 62. Crank member 62 has handles disposed sub stantially at right angles to the cam; these operating handles are shown as at 63 and 64. Fixedly mounted on flanges of A- frame elements 14 and are bearings 65 and 66 for rotatably supporting crank 62.

At the forwardmost portion of cantilever arm 21 and positioned above the cam follower is an integral channel element generally shown as 67 having arms 68 and 69.

The position and condition of the centering mechanism which permits movement of the coupler out of vertical registry with the arm 21 is shown in FIG. 3 wherein crank 62 has been rotated approximately 90 from the position shown in FIG. 2 to depress arm 21 to a level wherein the upper extremities of arms 68 and 69 are slightly above the lower extremities of the sides of the coupler shank l8.

Returning now to the car undeiframe elements and structure, element 70 is the coupler yoke, while the coupler unit is pivotally mounted as at 7L lclaim:

1. In combination with a car underframe, draft rigging, and car coupler of a railway car, said coupler having a shank in general proximity to said underframe and a head disposed forwardly in the longitudinal direction of the car from a pivotal connection of the coupler shank with said underframe; a device for providing resilient lateral support of the coupler within the underframe comprising:

an elongate arm member having a depending rear portion thereof pivotally attached to a fixed transversely extending vertical portion of the underframe and extending at its neutral position in generally horizontal alignment with a longitudinal vertical plane of the vehicle passing through said pivotal connection within a region directly underneath said shank, said arm member extending forwardly in cantilever relation to the underframe portion and adapted to be angularly displaced in opposite horizontal directions from said neutral position upon movement of said shank member in either lateral direction, said arm member being also deflectable downward from its horizontal neutral position to permit movement of said shank member independently of said arm member in either lateral direction;

said depending rear portion comprising an integral web having a forwardly facing spring pocket seat on one side and laterally spaced vertical grooves on its other side. a base member affixed to said underframe portion and having vertical ribs receivable in said grooves, a pivot piece having a horizontal tongue extending through aligned openings in said underframe portion. base member and web, said piece having a head engaging the rearward side of said base member to anchor said piece against forward movement, a tie bolt member having its rearward end extending into the opening in said web and being pivotally connected to said tongue, a spring retaining plate adjustably anchored at the other end of said tie bolt member, and spring means reacting between said plate and said spring pocket seat on said web, said spring means maintaining said ribs in engagement with said grooves in said neutral position and being compressible upon horizontal angling of said arm member about one of said ribs to resist said angling movement, said base memberribs and said pivot piece retaining said web in vertical registry at positions in either lateral direction from respective neutral positions; and

a depending cam follower and shank confining element extending in opposite vertical directions from the forward end of said arm member, said confining element, when in confining relationship with said shank member. retaining said arm member and shank member in registry at positions in either lateral direction from respective neutral positions, a cam means rotatably mounted on sa|d underframe. said cam means being rotatable and engageable with the follower to depress said arm member to a position in which said shank confining element is out of confining relationship with said coupler shank to permit movement of said coupler in either lateral direction independently of said arm member.

2 The combination of claim 1, wherein said web has a rear'- wardly facing tapered surface at its lower extremity extending downwardly and forwardly, and each of said ribs having a forwardly facing tapered surface at its lower extremity extending downwardly and rearwardly to effect operational clearance between said web and said base member thereby permitting said arm member to be deflectable downwardly from its horizontal neutral position.

Claims (2)

1. In combination with a car underframe, draft rigging, and car coupler of a railway car, said coupler having a shank in general proximity to said underframe and a head disposed forwardly in the longitudinal direction of the car from a pivotal connection of the coupler shank with said underframe; a device for providing resilient lateral support of the coupler within the underframe comprising: an elongate arm member having a depending rear portion thereof pivotally attached to a fixed transversely extending vertical portion of the underframe and extending at its neutral position in generally horizontal alignment with a longitudinal vertical plane of the vehicle passing through said pivotal connection within a region directly underneath said shank, said arm member extending forwardly in cantilever relation to the underframe portion and adapted to be angularly displaced in opposite horizontal directions from said neutral position upon movement of said shank member in either lateral direction, said arm member being also deflectable downward from its horizontal neutral position to permit movement of said shank member independently of said arm member in either lateral direction; said depending rear portion comprising an integral web having a forwardly facing spring pocket seat on one side and laterally spaced vertical grooves on its other side, a base member affixed to said underframe portion and having vertical ribs receivable in said grooves, a pivot piece having a horizontal tongue extending through aligned openings in said underframe portion, base member aNd web, said piece having a head engaging the rearward side of said base member to anchor said piece against forward movement, a tie bolt member having its rearward end extending into the opening in said web and being pivotally connected to said tongue, a spring retaining plate adjustably anchored at the other end of said tie bolt member, and spring means reacting between said plate and said spring pocket seat on said web, said spring means maintaining said ribs in engagement with said grooves in said neutral position and being compressible upon horizontal angling of said arm member about one of said ribs to resist said angling movement, said base member ribs and said pivot piece retaining said web in vertical registry at positions in either lateral direction from respective neutral positions; and a depending cam follower and shank confining element extending in opposite vertical directions from the forward end of said arm member, said confining element, when in confining relationship with said shank member, retaining said arm member and shank member in registry at positions in either lateral direction from respective neutral positions, a cam means rotatably mounted on said underframe, said cam means being rotatable and engageable with the follower to depress said arm member to a position in which said shank confining element is out of confining relationship with said coupler shank to permit movement of said coupler in either lateral direction independently of said arm member.
2. The combination of claim 1, wherein said web has a rearwardly facing tapered surface at its lower extremity extending downwardly and forwardly, and each of said ribs having a forwardly facing tapered surface at its lower extremity extending downwardly and rearwardly to effect operational clearance between said web and said base member thereby permitting said arm member to be deflectable downwardly from its horizontal neutral position.
US3561612A 1968-12-19 1968-12-19 Railway car coupler centering devices Expired - Lifetime US3561612A (en)

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Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4569455A (en) * 1984-04-04 1986-02-11 Harvey Hubbell Incorporated Centering detent
EP0583604A1 (en) * 1992-08-17 1994-02-23 SCHARFENBERGKUPPLUNG GmbH Support and centering device
US5890705A (en) * 1995-09-20 1999-04-06 Tayco Developments, Inc. Self-centering liquid spring assembly and constructions thereof
US6042094A (en) * 1995-09-20 2000-03-28 Tayco Developments, Inc. Self-centering column assembly employing liquid spring and structures containing such columns

Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1852810A (en) * 1930-08-22 1932-04-05 Gen Electric Centering device for radial draft gears
US2469118A (en) * 1943-08-12 1949-05-03 American Steel Foundries Centering means for railway draft devices
US2687218A (en) * 1949-09-08 1954-08-24 Ohio Brass Co Car coupler
US2754978A (en) * 1952-07-05 1956-07-17 Nat Malleable & Steel Castings Alignment control means for railway vehicles
US3438512A (en) * 1967-06-22 1969-04-15 Midland Ross Corp Railway-car coupler centering device
US3445005A (en) * 1966-07-05 1969-05-20 Amsted Ind Inc Coupler centering device

Patent Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1852810A (en) * 1930-08-22 1932-04-05 Gen Electric Centering device for radial draft gears
US2469118A (en) * 1943-08-12 1949-05-03 American Steel Foundries Centering means for railway draft devices
US2687218A (en) * 1949-09-08 1954-08-24 Ohio Brass Co Car coupler
US2754978A (en) * 1952-07-05 1956-07-17 Nat Malleable & Steel Castings Alignment control means for railway vehicles
US3445005A (en) * 1966-07-05 1969-05-20 Amsted Ind Inc Coupler centering device
US3438512A (en) * 1967-06-22 1969-04-15 Midland Ross Corp Railway-car coupler centering device

Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4569455A (en) * 1984-04-04 1986-02-11 Harvey Hubbell Incorporated Centering detent
EP0583604A1 (en) * 1992-08-17 1994-02-23 SCHARFENBERGKUPPLUNG GmbH Support and centering device
US5890705A (en) * 1995-09-20 1999-04-06 Tayco Developments, Inc. Self-centering liquid spring assembly and constructions thereof
US6042094A (en) * 1995-09-20 2000-03-28 Tayco Developments, Inc. Self-centering column assembly employing liquid spring and structures containing such columns

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CA918107A1 (en) grant

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Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:NATIONAL CASTINGS INC., A DE CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004810/0513

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