With Indicating Or Sighting Means Patents (Class 172/430)
  • Patent number: 11280067
    Abstract: A system for monitoring a status of attachment of a ground engaging tool (GET) at a mining, earth moving or rock processing machine. The system includes providing GET with at least one proximity sensor configured to sense a proximity of the GET relative to a mount region of heavy machinery to which the GET is mountable. The proximity sensor is configured to generate proximity data that is transmitted from the GET via a wireless communication pathway to a receiver located remote from the GET with the receiver configured to output in real-time the attachment status of the GET. The present system is advantageous to identify partial detachment or loosening of a GET so as to prevent undesirable GET loss and contamination of extracted or processed raw material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 22, 2022
    Assignee: SANDVIK INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AB
    Inventors: Bradley Darlington, Bruce Knowles, Paul Schild, Bradley Dallard
  • Patent number: 10900196
    Abstract: An excavator calibration framework comprises an excavator, a laser distance meter (LDM), and a laser reflector. The excavator comprises a chassis, linkage assembly (LA), sensor, implement, and an architecture controller. The LA comprises a boom, stick, and four-bar linkage (4BL) with the sensor on a 4BL dogbone linkage. The architecture controller is programmed to generate a mapping equation comprising linkage angle inputs (a measured dogbone angle ?DFMeasured, an estimated implement angle ?GHEstimated) and n unsolved 4BL linkage length and angle offset parameters. The controller is programmed to generate and solve a set of m mapping equations comprising the n unsolved parameters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2018
    Date of Patent: January 26, 2021
    Assignee: Caterpillar Trimble Control Technologies LLC
    Inventors: Mark Nicholas Howell, Samuel Joseph Frei
  • Patent number: 10578590
    Abstract: A ground engaging member that engages a work material to dig into the work material includes a member body extending from a leading end to a trailing end, the member body having an internal surface defining a cavity therein, the cavity having a concavity that faces away from the leading end along a longitudinal direction, the longitudinal direction extending from the leading end to the trailing end; and a first wear sensing body embedded in the member body between the cavity and the leading end along the longitudinal direction. The member body is fabricated from a ground engaging tool (GET) body material having a GET body material density. The first wear sensing body is fabricated from a wear sensing body material having a wear sensing body material density that is not equal to the GET body material density.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2019
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2020
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventor: John Michael Plouzek
  • Patent number: 10533306
    Abstract: A work vehicle comprises a swingable body. The swingable body is coupled to an undercarriage by a body joint. A boom is coupled to the swingable body by a boom joint. An arm is coupled to the boom by an arm joint. An implement is coupled to the arm by an implement joint. The work vehicle comprises a joint wear device that comprises a first sensor coupled to the swingable body and configured for generating a first signal indicative of an acceleration of the swingable body during a swing motion. A second sensor is coupled to at least one of the boom, the arm, and the implement and configured for generating a second signal indicative of an acceleration of at least one of the boom, the arm, and the implement, respectively, during the swing motion. A controller is coupled to the work vehicle and configured for generating a wear signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2017
    Date of Patent: January 14, 2020
    Assignee: DEERE & COMPANY
    Inventor: Lance R. Sherlock
  • Patent number: 10371669
    Abstract: A wear life sensing system may use nondestructive testing techniques to determine when ground engaging tools (GETs) are worn down and reach the ends of their useful wear lives. The wear life sensing system may include a wear sensing body and a wear sensor assembly embedded within the body of the GET. The wear sensing body is positioned proximate a maximum wear point of the GET and is fabricated from a material having a different material density than the material of the GET body. The wear sensor assembly outputs distance sensor signals in the direction of the wear sensing body and determines the presence or absence of the wear sensing body based on the reflected distance sensor signals received at the wear sensor assembly. The wear sensor assembly may transmit a GET replacement message when it no longer detects the presence of the wear sensing body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2019
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventor: John Michael Plouzek
  • Patent number: 10017914
    Abstract: An excavator calibration framework comprises an excavator, a laser distance meter (LDM), and a laser reflector. The excavator comprises a chassis, linkage assembly (LA), sensor, implement, and control architecture. The LA comprises a boom, stick, and four-bar linkage (4BL) with the sensor on a 4BL dogbone linkage. The control architecture comprises a controller programmed to execute an iterative process at successive implement curl positions. The iterative process comprises generating a measured dogbone angle ?DFMeasured, determining a height ? and a distance {circumflex over (D)} between an implement node and the LDM, and determining an implement node position. The iterative process further comprises determining an estimated implement angle ?GHEstimated and generating a mapping equation comprising linkage angle inputs (?DFMeasured, ?GHEstimated) and n unsolved 4BL linkage length and angle offset parameters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2018
    Assignee: Caterpillar Trimble Control Technologies LLC
    Inventors: Mark Nicholas Howell, Samuel Joseph Frei
  • Patent number: 9861545
    Abstract: An infant care system creates a microenvironment about an infant patient. An environmental control device is operable to change an environmental condition within the microenvironment. An auxiliary sensor is operable to intermittently obtain auxiliary data. A processor operates the environmental control device based upon at least the intermittently obtained auxiliary data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 9, 2018
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: James P. Cipriano, Lawrence G. Ten Eyck, Karen P. Starr
  • Patent number: 9828220
    Abstract: A boom assembly for a hoist may include a flat surface configured to elastically deform in response to a load on the hoist, and a strain sensor coupled to the flat surface and configured to generate an electronic signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2017
    Assignee: Goodrich Corporation
    Inventors: David R. Lopes, Theodore W. Wong, Domenic DeZan
  • Patent number: 9523181
    Abstract: A digging machine configured to bury a continuous elongated member in the bed of a body of water has a frame extending along a longitudinal axis; a guide assembly fitted to the frame to move crosswise to the longitudinal axis, and configured to engage and move along the continuous elongated member; and a control device configured to adjust the position of the guide assembly with respect to the frame and the continuous elongated member according to the conformation of the continuous elongated member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 8, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 20, 2016
    Assignee: SAIPEM S.P.A.
    Inventors: Massimiliano Formenti, Alberto Serena, Mauro Bettanin
  • Publication number: 20140311762
    Abstract: An erosion monitoring system is disclosed for use with a machine. The erosion monitoring system may have an ultrasonic sensor embedded within a replaceable cutting edge of a ground engaging tool connectable to the machine. The erosion monitoring system may also have a wireless communication element associated with the ultrasonic sensor, and a controller mountable onboard the machine in communication with the ultrasonic sensor via the wireless communication element. The controller may be configured to monitor a wear rate of the cutting edge based on signals from the ultrasonic sensor.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 19, 2013
    Publication date: October 23, 2014
    Applicant: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Matthew J. BEHMLANDER, Terri L. ATKINSON, Jeremy R. HAMMAR, Robert L. MEYER
  • Publication number: 20140154014
    Abstract: A BAS plow creates a V-trench along the linear route of a pipeline path and an instrumented bottle moving with the BAS plow collects BAS data indicative of the pitch, roll, heading, yaw, three dimensional positioning, speed and depth of the chassis, the shearing force applied to the seabed material and the applied tow force. The bottle can be swapped to collect the acquired data or an umbilical can be used to provide a real time stream of data. The Bas plow can simultaneously backfill the created trench, leaving an undisrupted seabed, or the pipeline can be laid in the BAS trench, which can also be made deeper and wider by additional trench cutting passes, significantly reducing the total time required for combined BAS and pipeline laying processes. The BAS plow can be released and retrieved over-the-stem of a towing vessel.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 18, 2013
    Publication date: June 5, 2014
    Inventor: Michael W.N. Wilson
  • Publication number: 20140124225
    Abstract: Systems, methods and apparatus are provided for shifting weight between a tractor and toolbar and between sections of the toolbar. Systems, methods and apparatus are also provided for controlling operative height of a toolbar and sections of a toolbar. Methods, systems and apparatus are also provided for folding a toolbar between a work position and a transport position.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 4, 2012
    Publication date: May 8, 2014
    Applicant: Precision Planting LLC
    Inventors: Gregg A. Sauder, Dale M. Koch
  • Publication number: 20140116735
    Abstract: An agricultural implement includes at least one row unit having a plurality of support members, each of which is pivotably coupled to an attachment frame or another of the support members to permit vertical pivoting vertical movement of the support members, and a plurality of soil-engaging tools, each of which is coupled to at least one of the support members. A plurality of hydraulic cylinders are coupled to the support members for urging the support members downwardly toward the soil. A plurality of controllable pressure control valves are coupled to the hydraulic cylinders for controlling the pressure of hydraulic fluid supplied to the cylinders. A plurality of sensors produce electrical signals corresponding to predetermined conditions, and a controller is coupled to the sensor and the controllable pressure control valves. The controller receives the electrical signals from the sensors and produces control signals for controlling the pressure control valves.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 3, 2014
    Publication date: May 1, 2014
    Applicant: Dawn Equipment Compnay
    Inventor: Joseph D. Bassett
  • Patent number: 8478492
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present invention are directed to a method and system for performing non-contact based determination of the position of an implement. In one embodiment, a non-contact based measurement system is used to determine the relative position of an implement coupled with a mobile machine. The geographic position of the mobile machine is determined and the geographic position of said implement based upon the geographic position of the mobile machine and the position of the implement relative to the mobile machine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 2004
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2013
    Assignee: Caterpillar Trimble Control Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Arthur James Taylor, Mark Nichols, Philip Jackson
  • Patent number: 8386134
    Abstract: A method for enhancing payload control is disclosed. The method includes removing material during a plurality of work cycles with at least one loading machine and associating the loading machine relative to at least one haulage machine. The method also includes determining the relative locations of the loading machine and the haulage machine and, during the plurality of work cycles, loading removed material into the haulage machine with the loading machine. The method also includes determining payload and payload distribution within the haulage machine at least before a last work cycle of the plurality of work cycles and communicating to the loading machine, via a machine-to-machine communication system, the amount and position within the haulage machine of additional payload desired in at least the last work cycle of the plurality of work cycles for desired payload and payload distribution.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 26, 2013
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventors: Stephen J. Morey, Timothy A. Vik, Richard D. Johnston, Jonathan W. Rothwell
  • Patent number: 8157473
    Abstract: An apparatus for removing markers from pavement includes a prime mover and an implement adjustably coupled to the prime mover. The implement includes a body, a tool having a working tip, a leveling pointer pivotably coupled to the body such that the leveling pointer moves relative to the body under the force of gravity, and a target indicium disposed near the leveling pointer. In some embodiments, the apparatus may further include a camera focused on the working tip of the tool and a display visible to an operator of the prime mover. A method of removing a marker from pavement includes positioning the working tip of a tool at a predetermined distance from an edge of the marker embedded in the pavement; adjusting the implement to a predetermined angle relative to an upper surface of the pavement by rotating the implement until the leveling pointer is aligned with the target indicium; and advancing the implement to remove the marker from the pavement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 23, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2012
    Assignee: M.A.S. Markers, Incorporated
    Inventor: Steven C Johnson
  • Patent number: 8038380
    Abstract: A bucket position indication mechanism is provided for a material handling machine. The material handling machine includes a bucket and an operator's control station. The bucket position indication mechanism includes at least one position indicating element attached to the bucket at a position that is viewable by an operator at the operator's control station when a bottom plate of the bucket is aligned with a ground surface and at least a portion of the position indicating element extending in a direction parallel to the bottom plate of the bucket.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 17, 2007
    Date of Patent: October 18, 2011
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventor: Arve Wilhelm Opperud
  • Patent number: 7743594
    Abstract: A mechanism for guiding a windrower while making an initial swath pass in a multi-pass windrow merging operation in a manner to establish the lateral spacing between an end of the header and the adjacent edge of the uncut crop so that the header encounters an optimal width of standing crop in a subsequent swath pass. The mechanism is selectively positionable between deployed (working) and stowed positions to maintain machine maneuverability when not in use. The mechanism further incorporates provisions to prevent damage to the mechanism resulting from inadvertent encounters with obstacles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 29, 2010
    Assignee: CNH America LLC
    Inventors: John E. Wanner, D. Russell Whitenight
  • Publication number: 20100096148
    Abstract: A system for determining the position of a tool mounted on a digging machine includes a monitoring appliance and several independent position-detecting devices each including: an attachment face including attachment elements held flush against an articulated component of the machine, a wireless communication module that sends data to the monitoring appliance, an independent electrical power supply source, a processing unit, an electronic module with angular position sensors. The devices are distributed so that each is on a different articulated part of the machine. The devices need no cables and are easy to fit. Signals emitted by the devices are received by the monitoring appliance, which calculates a set point for positioning the tool. The set point is displayed on a screen for viewing by an operator located in a cab.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 21, 2008
    Publication date: April 22, 2010
    Applicant: Agatec
    Inventors: Dimitru Mircea CHIOREAN, Gianmarco Bonetti, Albert Gamal
  • Publication number: 20090178816
    Abstract: A system for determining the elevation of a part of an implement, with the implement being attached to the ends of a pair of lift arms of a loader machine, includes a laser transmitter providing a reference beam of laser light. The beam may be a thin beam that is swept in a reference plane, or it may be a pair of fan shaped beams that are continuously rotated. A first beam detector is mounted on one of the pair of lift arms of the loader machine for detecting said reference beam and providing a first output. A second beam detector is mounted on the same lift arm and is spaced along the lift arm from the first beam detector for detecting the reference beam and providing a second output. A control circuit, responsive to the first beam detector and to the second beam detector, determines the elevation of the part of the implement based on the first and second outputs, and provides a projected implement elevation.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 15, 2008
    Publication date: July 16, 2009
    Applicant: C/O TRIMBLE NAVIGATION LIMITED
    Inventors: Richard Piekutowski, Kent Kahle, Robert Beekman
  • Publication number: 20080252907
    Abstract: An apparatus for determining an elevation of a working tool relative to a reference plane, includes a rotary laser system, a radio unit and a detector. The rotary laser system emits a rotating laser beam in a plane inclined relative to the reference plane. The radio unit is configured to measure a distance between the working tool and the rotary laser system and the detector is mounted on the working tool for detecting the laser beam. The elevation of the working tool can be determined on a basis of the inclination angle and the distance between the working tool and the rotary laser system.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 16, 2008
    Publication date: October 16, 2008
    Inventor: Willibald Sehr
  • Patent number: 7198113
    Abstract: A hole cutter includes a frame and first and second blade halves moveably mounted with respect to the frame. The blade halves are first driven into the ground and then are lifted upwardly out of the new hole with as ground plug therebetween. A lift flange engages both the blade halves during this upward movement. Then the blades and the ground plug are inserted into an old hole and the blades are removed simultaneously to leave the ground plug in the old hole. The frame is longitudinally extensible to create this removal of blade halves from the old hole.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 23, 2004
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2007
    Assignee: Standard Golf Company
    Inventor: Terry L. Schoppe
  • Patent number: 6386294
    Abstract: A hole making system for efficiently cutting a hole into a ground surface and for allowing effective removal of the plug. The inventive device includes a cutter assembly, a tamper assembly slidably positioned within the cutter assembly, and a hammer assembly slidably positioned about the tamper assembly for driving the cutter assembly into a ground surface. The tamper assembly includes a first depth indicator and a second depth indicator for indicating to the user the approximate depth of the hole being created. An alignment level is preferably positioned within a handle assembly of the tamper assembly for indicating to the operator the relative vertical alignment of the cutter assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 14, 2002
    Inventor: Warren R. Best
  • Patent number: 6247540
    Abstract: A blade pitch indicator is releasably secured to a linear actuator in the form of a turnbuckle. The blade pitch indicator comprises a cover having protrusions forming arrow points that line up with a line of demarcation on the linear actuator. Indicia is associated with the protrusions to provide blade pitch positioning information to the operator. The turnbuckle is provided with two moveable yokes and a stationary threaded shaft. The threaded shaft is rotated to extend and retract the yokes, thereby adjusting the pitch position of the bulldozer blade. The threaded shaft is provided with a multifaceted nut in the form of a hexagonal nut that is engaged by a wrench to rotate the threaded shaft. The hexagonal nut is provided with an aperture through which a pin is inserted releasably securing the cover to the turnbuckle. The arrow points of the protrusions line up with the base end of the yokes to indicate the bulldozer blade's pitch position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2001
    Assignee: Deere & Company
    Inventors: Larry Joseph Clemen, Gregory G. Miller, Preston Harold Roberts
  • Patent number: 5887664
    Abstract: An adjustable depth control mechanism for use with earth penetrating equipment. The invention includes a hub and spindle assembly for use with an adjustable depth gauge wheel, which is mounted on a support axle. It may also include a position indicator that an operator can readily view to determine the relative position of the depth gauge wheel and, accordingly, the depth setting of the ground penetrating disc. The indicator rotates to certain positions that correspond to the depth to which the disc is allowed to penetrate into the ground. Preferably, both the position indicator and the adjustment mechanism of the assembly are located internal to the depth gauge wheel and are covered and protected by the rim of the wheel from contamination by soil and crop residue.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 30, 1999
    Assignee: Yetter Manufacturing Company
    Inventors: Patrick Thomas Whalen, Ronald Eugene Chenoweth
  • Patent number: 5615744
    Abstract: A garden hand tool having a tubular outer member terminating at its bottom end in an elliptically shaped peripheral edge with such end being open, a plunger reciprocally mounted in the tubular member and a spring that resiliently biases the plunger upwardly in a direction away from the elliptically shaped open bottom end. The elliptically shaped peripheral edge is preferably in a plane disposed at an angle in a range of 15.degree. to 22.degree.1/2 to the longitudinal axis of the tubular member so as to be readily forced by hand into the earth to remove a weed or plant. The plunger projects upwardly beyond the upper end of the tubular outer member providing a portion that can be readily grasped to push the plunger downwardly to remove any earth associated with the plant that might be stuck in the bottom end of the outer tubular member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 1996
    Date of Patent: April 1, 1997
    Inventor: Edward G. Krafka
  • Patent number: 5596826
    Abstract: A level indicating mechanism for indicating to a machine operator the relative level position of a work machine includes a circular ring magnet and a bullseye level instrument positioned within the ring magnet. A potting material surrounds the level instrument and connects it to the ring magnet. The level indicating mechanism is adapted to be removably secured to portions of the work machine and be visable to the machine operator. The angular orientation of the work machine is adjustable by stabilizing apparatus to bring the work machine to a level position with respect to the ground surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 1995
    Date of Patent: January 28, 1997
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventor: William M. Barden
  • Patent number: 5579716
    Abstract: A device for indicating the relative position of a tractor with respect to a crop row or planter mark including a vertically disposed, hollow support post secured to the forward end of the tractor at the centerline thereof. A rotatable shaft is mounted in the support post and has an upper end positioned above the support post and a lower end positioned below the lower end of the support post. A linkage is connected to the lower end of the shaft and has a follower positioned rearwardly thereof which follows the crop row or planter mark. An indicator is secured to the upper end of the shaft for movement therewith. As the tractor drifts laterally with respect to the crop row or planter mark, the indicator moves indicating to the tractor operator that the tractor must be steered back into alignment with the crop row or planter mark.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 1995
    Date of Patent: December 3, 1996
    Inventor: Jerry L. Groff
  • Patent number: 5450678
    Abstract: The Grass Length Measuring Device is a hand tool for use by groundskeepers to more precisely measure the height of grass growing above the soil. The tool is configured as a tool body having two or more soil penetrating points and a plurality of soil surface reference teeth projecting outwardly from the tool body. The soil penetrating points are sharp and readily penetrate the soil under moderate hand pressure. The soil surface reference teeth have blunt tips that, under moderate hand pressure, will readily push aside the thatch but will not readily penetrate the soil. The soil reference teeth rests upon the soil surface and establishes a soil surface reference. One or more gauge surfaces on the tool body are aligned with the soil surface reference to permit measurement of grass height above soil.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 1994
    Date of Patent: September 19, 1995
    Assignee: Check Signature, Inc.
    Inventor: Joseph M. Check
  • Patent number: 5450909
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for determining the degree of grade ( slope ) upon which an earth moving machine is operating wherein a movable sighting device is mounted on the machine in such manner that the forces of gravity cause the device to move such that an operator looking at external reference objects may control and confirm the angle of grade ( slope ) of the earth being worked upon.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 1993
    Date of Patent: September 19, 1995
    Inventor: Robert Stevenson
  • Patent number: 5427184
    Abstract: A depth control includes an actuator tube connected for movement with the rockshaft and having a threaded crank supported on the forward end of the tube. A valve operator bracket is slidably and nonrotatably received over the tube and includes a threaded portion engaging the crank threads to positively locate the bracket relative to the tube. The bracket carries a plunger which, as the rockshaft lowers the implement to the working position, is moved into contact with a valve actuator to close a valve and prevent further lowering of the implement. One turn of the crank gives the same positive movement along the tube each time the depth setting is adjusted so that working depth can be set very accurately and easily.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 27, 1995
    Assignee: Deere & Company
    Inventor: Donald R. Peck
  • Patent number: 5201372
    Abstract: A gage connected to the rod end of the wing cylinder on a multi-section implement senses rod end pressure at the output of the hydraulic wing control (HWC) valve. The HWC valve is engaged or disengaged using the selective control valve (SCV) in the tractor, and the gage provides a visual indication to the operator of the following modes: 1) off; 2) fold wings; 3) unfold wings; 4) field operation--push wings down; and 5) field operation--pull wings up. In field operation, the gage also provides an indication of the force with which the cylinders are pushing or pulling on the wings to affect the cutting force of the wings.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 1991
    Date of Patent: April 13, 1993
    Assignee: Deere & Company
    Inventors: Warren L. Thompson, Marvis L. Landon
  • Patent number: 5170848
    Abstract: A sod cutting machine that includes a towable frame and a series of parallel trailing suspension arms, each suspension arm having a sod cutter disk and roller device for limiting the cutting depth of the disk. Each suspension arm is independently swingably attached to the frame so that each cutter disk achieves a proper cutting depth. A marking and tracking system is provided to maintain a desired parallelism and even spacing between the cuts in successive passes of the machine. The frame can be actuated to raise selected ones of the suspension arms in order to vary the slit spacing, thus to form elongated rectangular sod sections.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 15, 1991
    Date of Patent: December 15, 1992
    Inventor: Wayman E. Walton
  • Patent number: 5146686
    Abstract: A centerline sight apparatus includes a housing mounted on the forward end of a tractor with a sight arm operably mounted in the housing for transverse movement with respect to the longitudinal axis of the tractor. A second sight arm is operably mounted below the first sight arm and moves parallel to the first sight arm at a speed approximately twice as fast and in the same direction as the first sight arm. Both sight arms are connected to a motor which is responsive to movement of a pendulum, so as to move the sight arms in one direction of the other. The pendulum is mounted to sense the lateral cant of the tractor with respect to the tractor's longitudinal axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 26, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 15, 1992
    Inventor: Sam J. Brown
  • Patent number: 5052314
    Abstract: A planting tool for plants comprises a tube having a fixed beak half at its lower end. A hinged beak is hinged to the tube such that the fixed and hinged beak halves together form a beak capable of being pressed into the ground. The beak is then opened to make a hole in the ground for the plant, and is latched in the open position by the drawbar of a latching mechanism. The drawbar is attached to the hinged beak half and arranged to slide along an outside surface of the tube as the beak is opened and closed. The drawbar slides within a protective rail that is affixed to the outside of the tube to avoid being damaged or obstructed. The upper end of the drawbar extends above a reference edge of the rail when the beak is closed, and extends below that edge when the beak is open, thereby providing a visual indication of the condition of the beak. A handle for lifting and aiming the tube is adjustably attached to the rail to be adjustable to the height of the operator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 1990
    Date of Patent: October 1, 1991
    Assignee: Sandvik AB
    Inventor: Arvo Leini
  • Patent number: 5010962
    Abstract: Certain earthworking vehicles are often provided with the ability to change work implements to enable them to perform a variety of operations. In many instances, the coupling mechanism between the work implement and the frame structure of the vehicle that supports them is designed such that the implements may be mounted and removed quickly. During the mounting of the implement upon the support frame, there is no means by which an operator can be sure that the proper attachment has been achieved. A visual inspection of the mounting apparatus or some sort of testing maneuvering of the support frame is required to be sure the work implement is securely attached.The mounting apparatus of the present invention provides a means by which a proper coupling between the work implement and the support frame is positively indicated. This indication can only be attained when the respective components are aligned in a manner that will allow a proper attachment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 1990
    Date of Patent: April 30, 1991
    Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.
    Inventor: John J. Bloom, Jr.
  • Patent number: 4986368
    Abstract: An auger-like apparatus for boring planting holes includes an elongate shaft carrying a spiral blade or screw flight at its lower end. Means are provided at the outer end of the cutting edge to protect a sprinkler conduit or hose which may be contacted by the apparatus. In one embodiment, the outer end of the cutting edge is rounded and tapered into the peripheral edge of the screw flight. In a second embodiment, a guard extends between the outer edge of the cutting edge and a subsequent spiral of the screw flight. The shank may be graduated and support a slidable snap ring. A graduated tape mechanism is also provided to gauge the spacing of the plant bores.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 1988
    Date of Patent: January 22, 1991
    Inventors: John P. Underwood, Dan B. Poole
  • Patent number: 4984957
    Abstract: An adapter for operatively connecting a work implement such as a bucket or fork to a loader vehicle body. The adapter may be commonly used for connection of various types or sizes of implements. Though easy to use and manufacture, the adapter provides strong, reliable and balanced connection between the vehicle and implement through its pair of side brackets and one center bracket which are rigidly connected with each other via a common support frame and which pivotably connect in substantially straight alignment respectively with a pair of implement lift arms and one implement pivot arm extending from the vehicle body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 1989
    Date of Patent: January 15, 1991
    Assignee: Kubota, Ltd.
    Inventors: Michio Noguchi, Kazushige Mori, Nobuo Higashino, Motoki Sunada
  • Patent number: 4974682
    Abstract: A hammer driven soil coring device for use on golf course greens having a cylindrical cutting tube that has a lower cutting edge and longitudinally extending guide slots which serve as a guide for an ejector plate. Affixed to the cylindrical cutting tube is a cutter cap to which is affixed a support tube. The support tube has one vertically oriented slot. The slot serves as a guide for a stop which serves as a device to control the depth that a tamping plate achieves when the cylindrical cutting tube is driven into the surface of the green. A hand knob extends through the slot into a cylindrical rod for extending the tamping plate beyond the cylindrical cutting tube and to lock the tamping plate into a fixed position. A bubble level is located within the support tube. An impact head is located at the end of the tube with an aperture that allows the operator to view a bubble level.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 4, 1990
    Date of Patent: December 4, 1990
    Inventor: Michael R. Hoffman
  • Patent number: 4947938
    Abstract: A machine for cutting holes in golf course greens having a threaded drive shaft, a motor to rotate the drive shaft, a sod cutter at the bottom of the drive shaft and adapted to rotate with the drive shaft, a clutch that can be engaged and disengaged with the threads on the drive shaft, the clutch mounted on the upper end of an ejector cylinder concentrically encasing the drive shaft and adapted to effectively move downwardly when the clutch is engaged and to float free when the clutch is disengaged, supports for the plug ejector cylinder which allow the ejector cylinder to move along the axis of the drive shaft, and an ejector plate mounted at the bottom of the drive shaft and adapted to fit inside the cutter and to effectively move downwardly through the interior of the cutter when the clutch is engaged, in order to drive out the plug of turf and dirt inside the cutter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 1988
    Date of Patent: August 14, 1990
    Inventors: James E. Fricke, Ivan L. Stoltzfus
  • Patent number: 4932476
    Abstract: A level indicator for a disk harrow or the like having a motorized on-the-go leveling adjustment. A small diameter flexible cable is attached to the spring retainer which bears against one end of the coil spring on an adjustable link structure located between pivoting hitch structure and the adjustable ground wheels. The opposite end of the cable is attached to a slide which is free to move vertically in a bracket fixed to the motor mounting bracket. The weight of the slide maintains tension on the cable and as the motor is activated to move the spring retainer relative to the motor mounting bracket, the cable moves the slide vertically to provide an indication of the leveling adjustment. The consistent relationship between the spring retainer and the motor bracket at a given adjustment position provides an easy to read indication even though the entire leveling system may be moving relative to the machine frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 1989
    Date of Patent: June 12, 1990
    Assignee: Deere & Company
    Inventor: Kevin W. Hoehn
  • Patent number: 4928774
    Abstract: An adjustment means for a cultivator disc which provides lateral, vertical and angular adjustment means. A plurality of discs are mounted in parallel on a gang frame, and may be individually adjusted in the field to exact, predetermined positions established by a positive positioning means, and then firmly held in place by a clamping means. In the presently preferred embodiment, the individual support shafts of each cultivator disc are supported by the angle adjustment brackets, which are supported by the lateral adjustment brackets, which are slidably supported in predetermined fixed positions in lateral housings attached to the main towing bar of the cultivator assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 4, 1987
    Date of Patent: May 29, 1990
    Assignee: Landoll Corporation
    Inventor: Dennis E. Bell
  • Patent number: 4919214
    Abstract: A centerline sight device is mounted on a tractor to enable the driver to automatically steer the tractor along a center row or longitudinal mark to align the tractor with respect to furrows of crops in a field. The sight device includes a slight arm housing mounted on the forward end of the tractor, with a sight arm operably mounted on the housing to move transversely with respect to the longitudinal axis of the tractor. A motor is mounted on the sight arm housing to move the sight arm in response to selective activation by the tractor driver. A lamp assembly housing is mounted on the tractor forwardly of the seat and rearwardly of the sight arm, and has a plurality of lamps spaced transversely across the top perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the tractor. The lamps are electrically connected to the motor and sight arm so as to light a particular lamp in response to the position of the sight arm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 1989
    Date of Patent: April 24, 1990
    Inventor: Sam J. Brown
  • Patent number: 4903780
    Abstract: A mobile, self-propelling crushing machine includes a structure essentially consisting of two beams, on which a central frame is welded. The central frame houses a rotor which is supported on a frame, which, in one form, is lowered by hydraulic cylinders fixed to the frame. In another form, the frame is lowered by four mechanical jacks being driven by a single hydraulic motor. Thus, the penetration of the rotor into the soil to be treated does not depend only on its own weight, but especially on the action of the just-mentioned hydraulic cylinders or mechanic jacks. The rotor is driven by two hydraulic motors which are opposite to one another and which are self-adjusting so that when a pressure transducer signals a pressure increase to the hydraulic motors of the rotor due to an increased effort, the forward movement speed of the machine, which moves on tracks, decreases as a consequence.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 1987
    Date of Patent: February 27, 1990
    Inventor: Elda Barbieri
  • Patent number: 4892157
    Abstract: An indicator is provided for indicating rotation of a seed metering shaft used with a grain drill. The present invention incorporates a cylinder mounted to the seed metering shaft with its longitudinal axis offset but parallel to the axis of the shaft. The cylinder is mounted to rotate with the shaft. An indicator arm is hingedly mounted to the frame of the grain drill with one end positioned to ride on the outer surface of the cylinder and the other end free to move in correspondence with movement of the first end. With this invention, the indicator arm moves continually with movement of the seed metering shaft and thus provides a continuous indication of rotation of the seed metering shaft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 1988
    Date of Patent: January 9, 1990
    Inventor: LeRoy H. Gemar
  • Patent number: 4884638
    Abstract: A soil coring device with a core ejector mechanism that has a cylindrical cutting tube with two (2) 180 degree opposed tee slots that serve as a guide for an ejection plate, affixed to a cylindrical cutting tube is a tube with a vertically oriented slot attached perpendicularly thereto is a handle to which is affixed a bubble level. Located on the tube is a threaded locking knob that extends through the slot and communicates with a short presetting locking cylinder. Also located on the tube is a threaded locking hand knob that extends through the slot and communicates with a cylindrical rod to which a tamping plate is permenently attached. In operation, the soil coring device handle is rotated causing the cylindrical cutting tube to enter the soil to the predetermined depth, that has been preset by tightening the threaded locking knob into the short presetting locking cylinder, until ejection plate makes contact with the surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 3, 1989
    Date of Patent: December 5, 1989
    Inventor: Michael R. Hoffman
  • Patent number: 4883128
    Abstract: A guidance system for a tractor drawn farm implement for providing an indication to the operator of the tractor as to variance of the implement from a desired course includes a pair of horizontally extending feeler rods supported by a shaft and having free ends extending in a parallel spaced relation to sense the crop and rotate the shaft if the implement veers off course. A light sensitive photopotentiometer coupled to the shaft has its output voltage varied as a function of the angular position of the shaft. A signal processing circuit responds to variation in the voltage of the light sensitive photopotentiometer to drive the needle of an analog meter to indicate the direction and amount of deviation of the implement from the desired course, the meter being mounted on the tractor and within the line of sight of the operator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 1988
    Date of Patent: November 28, 1989
    Assignee: Donald L. O'Neall
    Inventors: Donald L. O'Neall, Kerry L. Meyer
  • Patent number: 4828045
    Abstract: A visual tilt indicator for an implement, particularly but not exclusively for indicating the tilt angle of a dozer blade on a tractive vehicle, wherein the implement is pivotally supported on the vehicle by an implement universal joint and the support includes hydraulic cylinders operably interconnected between the vehicle and the implement to angle and tilt the implement. The visual tilt indicator of this invention includes an indicator shaft which is operably connected to the vehicle by a universal joint in the vertical axis of the implement support universal joint and the shaft extends horizontally adjacent the implement to indicate the tilt angle of the implement relative to the vehicle. The implement preferably includes a plurality of shaft support indicator means, such as brackets, which receive and slidably support the indicator shaft on the implement to indicate the relative movement of the shaft and the implement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 9, 1987
    Date of Patent: May 9, 1989
    Assignee: J. I. Case Company
    Inventors: Rudolf Horsch, Claude M. Frisbee, Ronald H. Werner
  • Patent number: 4815544
    Abstract: This invention provides a double adjustable weeding disk support device in order to make rapid and positive adjustments of the depth and cut of the weeding disks. This invention is characterized by a shaft having conventional weeding disks rotatably mounted on the lower end and a series of openings near the other end. The shaft projects upward through openings in the frame crossbar of a conventional cultivator, through an opening in a plate mounted in rigid relationship with the frame crossbar and through the collar mounted on an adjustment arm with the shaft being fixed by means of bolt through opposite openings in the collar and through an opening in the shaft. The adjustable arm can be held in fixed relationship with the fixed plate by inserting a bolt through mating openings in the adjustment arm and in the plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 24, 1987
    Date of Patent: March 28, 1989
    Assignee: Allied Products Corporation
    Inventor: Garry R. Good
  • Patent number: 4760657
    Abstract: A snow-sweeping roller for replaceable attachment to a utility road vehicle (1) having brush-equipped roller (4) rotatably affixed at the underside of the vehicle. To achieve low-wear operation of the sweeper roller (4) and simultaneously low energy consumption, a control device is provided for adjusting and changing roller rpm in accordance with the following factors:(a) The circumferential speed (w) of the roller changes in proportion to vehicle speed (f);(b) The circumferential speed (w) of the roller has a ratio to the vehicle speed (f) that ranges from unity to two; and(c) A minimum value of the circumferential speed (w-min) of the roller is established for when the vehicle is moving slowly or is stationary.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 1986
    Date of Patent: August 2, 1988
    Assignee: Ing. Alfred Schmidt GmbH
    Inventors: Herbert Ganzmann, Gunther Pastari