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Rail loading train for transporting long welded rails

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Title: Rail loading train for transporting long welded rails.
Abstract: A rail loading train for transporting long welded rails includes a device at the end of the rail loading train for anchoring the rails. The device includes a plurality of insertion devices each being provided for anchoring a single rail and having an inserting opening and a rail stop. Each insertion device has two clamping jaws which are spaced from one another in a direction extending perpendicularly to a rail web of the rail to be clamped, for forming the inserting opening. At least one clamping jaw is equipped with a clamping device for contacting the rail web and for automatic force-locking connection to said rail web, effective against a direction of insertion. Both clamping jaws are constructed for being spaced from one another for releasing the force-locking connection to the rail web. ...


- Hollywood, FL, US
Inventor: Josef Hertelendi
USPTO Applicaton #: #20080232917 - Class: 410 2 (USPTO) - 09/25/08 - Class 410 


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The Patent Description & Claims data below is from USPTO Patent Application 20080232917, Rail loading train for transporting long welded rails.

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CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This is a continuing application, under 35 U.S.C. §120, of copending International Application No. PCT/EP2006/010213, filed Oct. 24, 2006, which designated the United States; this application also claims the priority, under 35 U.S.C. §119, of German Patent Application DE 20 2005 019 061.6, filed Dec. 6, 2005; the prior applications are herewith incorporated by reference in their entirety.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Field of the Invention

The invention relates to a rail loading train for transporting long welded rails. The rail loading train includes loading cars made mobile on a track and a device, disposed at an end of the rail loading train, for anchoring the rails.

European Patent EP 752 499 B1, corresponding to U.S. Pat. No. 5,762,464, European Patent EP 886 007 B1 or German Patent DE 44 18 376.3 B4, corresponding to U.S. Pat. No. 5,630,365 have already disclosed rail loading trains with which several layers of long rails can be transported on specially adapted cars, that are mobile on a track, to a track construction site, to be unloaded there through the use of a gantry crane that is mobile on the cars. The rails have to be clamped tight by appropriate devices and with an exact fastening moment in order to prevent an undesirable longitudinal movement of the rails relative to the loading car during transport. Applying the clamping devices and releasing the same prior to unloading the long rails has heretofore been carried out manually, which involved a certain safety risk for the operating personnel.

Further, a rail clamping device for temporary connection of two rails is disclosed in European Patent EP 1 057 933 B1. With that device it is possible to produce a force-locking connection by simply pushing the device, which is formed of two fish-plates screwed to one another, onto the two rail ends. However, it is necessary to unscrew and remove the fish-plate bolt manually in order to release the connection. A force-locking connection is one which connects two elements together by force external to the elements, as opposed to a form-locking connection which is provided by the shapes of the elements themselves.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is accordingly an object of the invention to provide a rail loading train for transporting long welded rails which overcomes the hereinafore-mentioned disadvantages of the heretofore-known devices of this general type and with which it is possible to greatly automate clamping, required during transport, of the long rails to be transported.

With the foregoing and other objects in view there is provided, in accordance with the invention, a rail loading train for transporting long welded rails. The rail loading train comprises loading cars mobile on a track, a device disposed at an end of the rail loading train for anchoring the rails, including a plurality of insertion devices each provided for anchoring a single rail and having an inserting opening and a rail stop, each of the insertion devices including two clamping jaws being spaced from one another in a direction extending perpendicularly to a rail web of the rail to be clamped, for forming the inserting opening, at least one of the clamping jaws having a clamping device for contacting the rail web and for automatic force-locking connection to the rail web, effective against a direction of insertion of the rail to be clamped, and both of the clamping jaws being constructed for being spaced from one another for releasing the force-locking connection to the rail web.

In a rail loading train equipped with such a device for anchoring the rails, it is now possible in an advantageous way to carry out the rail clamping operation and also the releasing of the clamping connection by remote control, without the necessity for immediate manual intervention by an operator. On one hand, clamping the long rails can now be carried out by the driver of the gantry crane himself or herself by simply pushing the rail ends into the insertion device directly in the course of loading the rails, thus causing the rails to be fixed instantaneously fully automatically and immovably with a precisely calculable tightening moment. On the other hand, the clamping jaws spaced from one another also make it possible to carry out the releasing of the connection likewise fully automatically, or remotely controlled by the crane operator himself or herself. Thus, the security risk for the operating personnel can be very much minimized with elimination of unnecessary sources of danger.

Other features which are considered as characteristic for the invention are set forth in the appended claims.

Although the invention is illustrated and described herein as embodied in a rail loading train for transporting long welded rails, it is nevertheless not intended to be limited to the details shown, since various modifications and structural changes may be made therein without departing from the spirit of the invention and within the scope and range of equivalents of the claims.

The construction and method of operation of the invention, however, together with additional objects and advantages thereof will be best understood from the following description of specific embodiments when read in connection with the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWING

FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic, side-elevational view of a rail loading train constructed according to the invention;

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary, partly-sectional, top-plan view of an insertion device having clamping devices;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged, fragmentary, partly-sectional, top-plan view of the clamping devices according to FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a top-plan view of a device for anchoring the rails; and

FIG. 5 is a side-elevational view of the device according to FIG. 4.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring now to the figures of the drawings in detail and first, particularly, to FIG. 1 thereof, there is seen a rail loading train 1 which includes a plurality of loading cars 4 made mobile through the use of on-track undercarriages or running gear 2 on a track 3 and serves for transporting long welded rails 5. The latter are stored in a known manner on support brackets 7 in three layers 6 disposed one above the other. In order to load and unload the rails 5, a crane 10, having a jib 8 and a cabin or cab 9, is freely mobile on crane rails 11 along the loading cars 4 and displaces the long welded rails 5 in longitudinal direction of the car or train. A device 12 for anchoring the rails 5 during transport is located at an end 40 (preferably at both ends) of the rail loading train 1. The device 12 is formed of several insertion devices 13 which are provided for anchoring a single rail 5 in each case and which will be described in more detail below with regard to FIGS. 2 to 5.

As is seen in FIG. 2 (and partly also in FIG. 3), each insertion device 13 includes two clamping jaws 14 which, at one end 15 thereof, are spaced from one another in a direction extending perpendicularly to a rail web 21 of the rail 5 to be clamped, thus forming an inserting opening 20, and are provided with a rail stop 22. Furthermore, each clamping jaw 14 is equipped with a clamping device 23 for contacting the rail web 21. The two clamping jaws 14 are connected to one another, at an end 19 spaced farther from the clamping device 23, in each case by a joint 16 and are pivotable about a pivot axis 18 extending parallel to a plane of symmetry 17 of the rail 5.

As becomes clearer from FIG. 2, a displacement drive 37 is provided for displacement of the insertion device 13, formed by the two clamping jaws 14, in a displacement direction 38 extending in the plane of symmetry 17 of the rail 5. The two clamping jaws 14 are housed in a centering cage 35 which has a V-shaped opening 36 for receiving the clamping jaws 14. The opening 36 is formed so as to be tapered in the direction towards the displacement drive 37. Actuation of the displacement drive 37 in the direction to the right side in FIG. 2 causes the clamping jaws 14 to be pulled into the opening 36 and thus to be pressed against one another automatically.

FIG. 3 shows the clamping device 23 of the insertion device 13 in greater detail, specifically in two different working positions: in the lower half of the drawing in a clamping position, and in the upper half of the drawing in an opening position. The clamping device 23 is configured in each case with clamping rollers 31 which are rotatable about an axis of rotation 32 positioned parallel to the pivot axis 18 (FIG. 2) and constructed for an automatic force-locking connection to the rail web 21, effective against a direction of insertion 24 of the rail 5. To that end, each clamping device 23 or each clamping roller 31 is constructed for displacement by the action of a pressure medium 25 (which, in the presently illustrated example, is a spring 26) from a first end 27, situated closer to the rail stop 22, of a recess 29, in the direction towards a second end 28 which is spaced farther from the rail stop 22. In this way, a pressing surface 30 of the recess 29, connecting the two ends 27, 28 to one another, for guiding and applying the clamping device 23, is disposed inclined with respect to a plane of symmetry 17 of the rail 5, thus forming an angle a.

In the opening position, or prior to a rail 5 being pushed into the insertion device 13, the two clamping rollers 31 are pressed by the pressure medium 25 against the second end 28 of the recess 29 and held in this position (see the top half of FIG. 3). The clamping jaws 14 with the clamping rollers 31 are pivoted towards one another by actuation of the displacement drive 37. Now, if a rail 5 is inserted into the inserting opening 20 of the insertion device 13 in the direction of insertion 24, the two clamping rollers 31 are forced apart by the rail web 21, and there is a displacement of the clamping rollers 31 along the pressing surface 30 in the direction towards the first end 27 of the recess 29 (see the upper half of FIG. 3). Due to the pressing surface 30 being disposed at the angle a with regard to the plane of symmetry 17 of the rail 5, and also due to the influence of the pressure medium 25, there is an automatic clamping effect of the clamping rollers 31 against the direction of insertion 24 of the rail 5, wherein the clamping device 23 is automatically force-lockingly applied to the rail web 21. In this way, possible differences in the thickness of the rail web 21 of various rails 5 are of no consequence.

In order to release the force-locking connection to the rail web 21, the two clamping jaws 14 can be distanced from one another by pivoting about the pivot axis 18. A pressure medium 33 provided between the two clamping jaws 14 and having the form of a coil spring 34, for instance (see FIG. 2), serves for pressing the clamping jaws 14 apart automatically. Now, if the clamping jaws 14 are displaced with actuation of the displacement drive 37 from the above-described position for form-locking connection of the clamping rollers 31 to the rail web 21 relative to the centering cage 35 into the opening position (towards the left in FIG. 2), then the two clamping jaws 14 are automatically moved apart by the action of the pressure medium 33. With this action, the clamping rollers 31 are distanced from the rail web 21. As a result, the rail 5 is released for being displaced longitudinally against the direction of insertion 24.

As is seen in FIG. 5, the device 12 for anchoring the rails 5 is constructed for vertical adjustment in each case with respect to the rail loading train 1 or the loading car 4 through the use of a pivot drive 39, that is from a first working position for clamping the rails 5 into a second inoperative position. This second position may be situated either above or below the rails 5 (see position shown in dash-and-dot lines). FIG. 4 discloses that the insertion devices 13, positioned next to one another in rows, are disposed in staggered layers in order to permit an unhindered view for the operator situated in the cabin 9 of the crane 10.

When loading the rails 5, the latter are pulled into the support brackets in the known manner through the use of the crane 10 made mobile on the crane rails 11. The crane is stopped shortly before reaching the device 12, and the respective rail 5 is pulled into the insertion device 13 with the aid of the jib 8 and anchored automatically therein. The two upper layers are each lowered hydraulically through the use of the pivot drive 39.

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stats Patent Info
Application #
US 20080232917 A1
Publish Date
09/25/2008
Document #
12132976
File Date
06/04/2008
USPTO Class
410/2
Other USPTO Classes
International Class
61D3/16
Drawings
3



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