Patents Represented by Attorney, Agent or Law Firm Alan T. McDonald
  • Patent number: 6799473
    Abstract: A load cell alignment apparatus for aligning a load cell during an axial tension test of a brake cable. The apparatus includes a mounting structure, an alignment structure, a biasing device, and the load cell. The alignment structure is connected between the mounting structure and the biasing device. The biasing device is connected to the load cell and applies a tension preload to the load cell, and the alignment structure, in response to the tension preload, properly aligns the load cell with an axis for subsequent measurement of applied tension on the brake cable. The alignment structure permits only linear axial tension to be applied to the load cell in response to application of a further tension load on the load cell.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 2002
    Date of Patent: October 5, 2004
    Assignee: Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Steve Adrian
  • Patent number: 6779423
    Abstract: A kickoff socket assembly includes a socket and an insert member that fits closely inside the socket. The insert member includes a body portion and a projection. The projection integrally extends from the body portion, and has a distal end disposed a predetermined distance from the open end of the socket, and is narrower in diameter than the body portion of the insert member. In use, a nut is placed over the projection such that the projection extends partially through the nut. The nut is engaged with a threaded shaft and the socket is rotated to drive the nut onto the shaft. Rotation of the nut is stopped by engagement of the distal end of the projection with the shaft when the nut is threaded the predetermined distance on the shaft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2004
    Assignee: Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Gary Hammons, Russell Gygi, James Gatchel, Robert Bogard
  • Patent number: 6779585
    Abstract: A method for filling a ladle cup of a ladle assembly with molten aluminum to reduce formation of aluminum oxides. The ladle cup is rotated into alignment with an axis of a ladle arm, which carries the ladle cup, such that a plane defined by the ladle cup rim is generally parallel to the ladle arm axis and the opening of the ladle cup faces parallel to a surface of the molten aluminum. The ladle cup is inserted into the bath of molten aluminum while maintained in alignment with the ladle arm axis. When the ladle cup reaches its final position within the bath of molten aluminum, the ladle cup is rotated to a desired angular orientation, which corresponds to a desired shot weight, and then is raised out of the molten aluminum while being retained in the desired angular orientation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2004
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Mark Zumberger, Steve Pape, John David Pinkerton, Jr., Josh Edwards, Keith Bergman, Yukio Kawai
  • Patent number: 6761404
    Abstract: A securable protective seat cover, system and method. For a manually adjustable vehicle seat, a securable protective seat cover apparatus includes a seat cushion and an adjustor bar. The apparatus also includes a plastic film shaped to cover the vehicle seat. The film includes a front portion that includes a first seal portion, a second seal portion, and a surrounding portion. The first and second seal portions are directly secured to one another at a side of the adjustor bar so as to attach the surrounding portion to the adjustor bar. For a power adjustable vehicle seat, a temporary plastic protective seat cover system includes a front cover mounted below the power adjustable vehicle seat. The front cover includes a hook. The system also includes a plastic film that is shaped to cover the vehicle seat and is adapted to be secured to the hook.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 2002
    Date of Patent: July 13, 2004
    Assignee: Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Dustin Parker, Kyle Davidson
  • Patent number: 6760794
    Abstract: Vehicle identification number (VIN) data acquisition and stamping center control, wherein a main computer supplies VIN data to a PLC disposed at the stamping center, and the PLC stores a quantity of VIN data, up to a predetermined maximum, in an input buffer memory of the PLC in order to permit the stamping center to continue operating even when the network connection with the main computer is broken. The PLC also includes an output buffer memory in which stamped VINs may be stored until the network connection is restored, at which point the stamped VINs are transmitted to the main computer. Alternative semi-automatic and manual modes of operation permit the stamping center to continue operating even when the supply of VIN data from the input buffer memory is exhausted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 2002
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2004
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: John Deno, Jay Johnson, Rick Dalton
  • Patent number: 6698655
    Abstract: A system and method is disclosed for ordering, receiving, staging, and delivering supplies to assembly line locations in an assembly plant. Cross-dock and staging functions are combined at one facility—a super cross-dock—so that suppliers to a large-scale manufacturer with multiple assembly plants may make deliveries of supplies to a single facility that services the multiple assembly plants. Supplies from multiple suppliers are received at the super cross-dock and staged for distribution to the assembly plants that comprise a manufacturing operation. Supply order requests are submitted from assembly plant computer systems that consolidate the orders before submitting an order to a supplier. Orders are consolidated based on when supplies are required at the various assembly plants. A bar code labeling system at the suppliers supports the super cross-dock inventory and distribution of supplies according to delivery time and assembly plant.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2003
    Date of Patent: March 2, 2004
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Ted Kondo, Masayuki Tamai, Neil Vining
  • Patent number: 6694590
    Abstract: A method for ensuring the proper setup position of an automotive-type automatic transmission gear selector (shifter). The present invention utilizes a setting tool having an arcuate configuration. The setting tool may be inserted through a gear selector lever of a gear selector assembly, and rotated to provide for a slight biasing of the gear selector lever in a predetermined direction. The method is especially applicable to the setup of a gear selector, wherein the connector coupling the gear selector lever to the transmission is attached using a threaded fastener. The bias imparted by the setting tool counteracts the movement of the gear selector lever produced by the torque applied during tightening of the fastener.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2002
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2004
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Jon Jenkins
  • Patent number: 6670803
    Abstract: An apparatus for determining a velocity of a part through a part feeder tube. The part feeder tube defines an axis. The apparatus includes first and second sensors spaced axially from each other by a predetermined distance (d). The first sensor sends a first signal in response to sensing the part and the second sensor sends a second, subsequent signal in response to sensing the part. The velocity of the part is based on the distance (d) and the first and second signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Brent Rankin
  • Patent number: 6666097
    Abstract: A force measuring device and method for determining a force required to move a cart. The force measuring device includes a force generating device, a load member, a load cell, and a controller. The force generating device is connected to the load member and moves the load member toward or away from the cart so as to apply pushing or pulling forces to the cart. The load cell is disposed between the load member and the cart, and transmits sensed force data to the controller. During a test, the controller collects the force data from the load cell. By testing carts of various configurations under all expected loading conditions, the performance of each cart configuration can be experimentally determined. The performance data is assembled in a database to permit a user to identify an optimum cart for an intended application.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 27, 2001
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Robert T. Smith
  • Patent number: 6659160
    Abstract: A reverse break stamp hook assembly and method for breaking a biscuit from a casting. The reverse break stamp hook assembly is mounted to an upper trim die of conventional stamping equipment, and includes a leg that hangs from a pivot attached to a mounting bracket and a counterweight arm that extends from the pivot. The hook includes an angled front portion and a catch portion. As the upper trim die moves toward a lower trim die during the downstroke, the angled front portion of the hook contacts an edge of the biscuit. The contact between the edge of the biscuit and the angled front portion of the hook causes the hook to pivot away from the biscuit until the catch portion passes below the biscuit. The counterweight causes the hook to pivot back toward the biscuit, positioning the catch portion under the biscuit. During the upstroke, the catch portion engages the bottom side of the biscuit and causes the biscuit to break from the part as the upper trim die is raised.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Robert Dague, Jr.
  • Patent number: 6615676
    Abstract: A method and system for tensioning a belt, the system including a tensioning measuring head, a controller, and an air impact gun. The tension measuring head includes a vibration sensor and a belt striker. The controller activates the belt striker and receives signals from the vibration sensor indicative of the vibrations set up in the belt being tensioned. The measured vibrations are indicative of the tension on the belt, and are used by the controller to deactivate the air impact gun when the belt tension is determined to be at a desired level.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Brent C Rankin
  • Patent number: 6616848
    Abstract: A die lube recovery and recycling system includes a weir tank, a filtration assembly, and a holding tank. The weir tank receives used, dirty die lube and filters large particles therefrom. Preliminarily filtered die lube is pumped through the filtration assembly and reconditioned die lube is delivered to the holding tank. A level of reconditioned die lube in the holding tank is monitored and, the die lube is replenished with fresh die lube from a fresh die lube source when the level falls below a predetermined level. A die lube pressure booster is used to withdraw die lube from the holding tank, pressurize the withdrawn die lube, and spray the pressurized die lube on a die in a casting machine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 11, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Michael R. Steiner
  • Patent number: 6598500
    Abstract: A device for operating on each nut of a double-nut assembly, wherein an inner nut of the assembly is of a diameter larger than that of an outer nut of the assembly. The device comprises two components: the first component is provided to act on the inner nut and is designed to allow a portion of the second component to pass therethrough, while the second component is provided to act on the outer nut. The first component may be used to rotate the inner nut to a desired position while a portion of the second component resides therein, whereafter the second component may be used to secure the rotated position by tightening the outer nut. The device may be used with an eccentric fastener assembly employing such a double-nut arrangement to set the toe angle of a vehicle wheel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 2001
    Date of Patent: July 29, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Dean O. Chivington
  • Patent number: 6588962
    Abstract: A gap checking device includes a housing, a plunger, and a paint applicator. The housing defines a paint reservoir in which a proximal end of the plunger is received. The plunger is movable between a closed position sealing the reservoir and an open position permitting the release of paint from the reservoir. When the plunger is open, paint flows along the plunger toward a distal end of the plunger. The paint applicator, which is disposed near the distal end of the plunger, is specially shaped and sized to check a gap between a pair of surfaces, such as the gap in an end surface of a control shaft. To check the gap, the distal end of the plunger is inserted into the gap, and the device housing is forced toward the end surface. The distal end of the housing moves axially toward the end surface of the control shaft. If the gap is not too small, the end surface of the control shaft engages the paint applicator and is thereby coated with paint.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2002
    Date of Patent: July 8, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: David Schmitt
  • Patent number: 6588916
    Abstract: A paint booth lighting fixture having a sealed enclosure that receives a plurality of light bulbs, each of the bulbs having an individually adjustable reflector movably secured adjacent thereto. The reflectors are movable to direct light in a desired direction. The reflectors are held in a desired position and include an elongated body defining a series of elongated reflective surfaces.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 27, 2001
    Date of Patent: July 8, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Guy Belair
  • Patent number: 6568507
    Abstract: A system and method for removing liquids from engines, the system including first and second liquid storage tanks that are disposed for serial flow therebetween, a pressure source, and a vacuum source. The first liquid storage tank is continuously connected to the vacuum source, while the second liquid storage tank is alternatively connected to either the vacuum source, during filling, or the pressure source, during draining. Opening and closing the valves is controlled in response to sensed liquid levels in the tanks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 25, 2001
    Date of Patent: May 27, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Kevin R. Chandler
  • Patent number: 6516655
    Abstract: A method and device for testing a metal part for weakness to deformation. The device includes a motor that moves a shaft and a load applicator toward and away from a part being tested. The motor is activated in accordance with a predetermined sequence and in dependence upon pressure sensed by a load cell associated with the shaft. In the method, displacement is measured by a displacement measuring device throughout the testing sequence in order to determine the part's resistance to deformation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 1, 2002
    Date of Patent: February 11, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Steve Adrian
  • Patent number: 6508155
    Abstract: Cast metal parts are created for use in making machinery. When these parts are formed, unwanted material remains in the openings of the parts. This material, called flash, must be removed. In the method of the present invention, the cast parts are placed on a platen of a trim press that has multi-part punches attached thereto that are configured to self-align with the openings in the cast part and operative to evenly remove the flash. The invention also relates to a punch that initially breaks through the flash with a stationary punch that removes a majority of the flash inside the opening of the cast part. Next, a moving or self-centering punch self-aligns to the opening in the cast part and operates to remove the remaining flash. The inventive punch may also include a mounting base for attachment of the multi-part punches to the plate or platen of the press.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2000
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Mark Phlipot
  • Patent number: 6508303
    Abstract: An air supply control device for use in the heating, cooling, and conditioning of an air supply to a predetermined temperature. The device includes a cooling unit that is adapted to cool the air passing through the unit. The device incorporates a variable speed cooling fluid pump that pumps cooling fluid through a heat exchanger in the cooling unit, and a variable frequency drive (“VFD”) that is electrically connected to the pump and which can vary the speed of the pump. The device also incorporates a temperature sensor that is positioned to detect the temperature of the air after it has passed through the cooling unit. A programmable logic controller (“PLC”) is included in the device and is in electronic communication with the temperature sensor and the VFD. The PLC is programmed to vary the speed of the cooling fluid pump to adjust the temperature of the air passing through the cooling unit to the predetermined temperature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2003
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: James P. Naderer
  • Patent number: 6492900
    Abstract: A sensor device is used for sensing position of a movable component. The sensor device can be applied to multiple applications. For example, proper alignment between a shifter spline and a shifter position sensor of a transmission assembly can be confirmed by applying the sensor device of the present invention to confirm alignment of the transmission shifter with a transmission shifter position sensor during transmission assembly. A rotary sensor converts angular movement to a proportional electrical output. A converter then converts the proportional electrical output to an input which can be read. The location of the movable component is then determined, and displayed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 19, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2002
    Assignee: Honda of America Manufacturing, Inc.
    Inventor: Brent C. Rankin