PatentDe  


Dokumentenidentifikation EP1370127 31.10.2007
EP-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0001370127
Titel GESTELL FÜR GRASBEHANDLUNGSMASCHINE
Anmelder Michel, David, Adel, Leeds, GB
Erfinder Michel, David, Adel Leeds LS16 7AL, GB
Vertreter derzeit kein Vertreter bestellt
DE-Aktenzeichen 60222539
Vertragsstaaten AT, BE, CH, CY, DE, DK, ES, FI, FR, GB, GR, IE, IT, LI, LU, MC, NL, PT, SE, TR
Sprache des Dokument EN
EP-Anmeldetag 22.03.2002
EP-Aktenzeichen 027130327
WO-Anmeldetag 22.03.2002
PCT-Aktenzeichen PCT/GB02/01144
WO-Veröffentlichungsnummer 2002076180
WO-Veröffentlichungsdatum 03.10.2002
EP-Offenlegungsdatum 17.12.2003
EP date of grant 19.09.2007
Veröffentlichungstag im Patentblatt 31.10.2007
IPC-Hauptklasse A01D 34/62(2006.01)A, F, I, 20051017, B, H, EP

Beschreibung[en]

This invention relates to a multi-head grass treatment machine having a frame, and a number of grass treatment heads (units) mounted on the frame and each mounting a respective elongate grass treatment module. The invention also relates to a chassis for a grass treatment unit and which is adapted to mount thereon an interchangeable elongate grass treatment module having opposed outer ends by which it is mounted on the chassis.

In this specification, the term "a multi-head (unit) grass treatment machine" is intended to include a so-called golf "greens" mower having a main frame and a number of separate grass treatment heads or units mounted on the main frame, and each comprising a chassis having an elongate grass and/or ground treatment device mounted therein. Examples of treatment device include cylindrical mowers, spikers etc., and which therefore constitute the actual operating mechanism built into the chassis of each unit and which actually treats the grass and/or ground.

The term "grass treatment unit" therefore refers to a complete unit which can be fitted to the frame of a ride-on multi-head grass treatment machine.

The term "chassis" refers to the housing or frame of a grass treatment unit in which the elongate grass and/or ground treatment device is mounted.

The term "grass treatment module", referred to below, includes a grass/ground treatment device which is designed to be quickly and easily removable, replaceable and interchangeable with different modules; within the chassis of each unit.

The invention is particularly (though not exclusively) applied to grass treatment machines of the type which have a ride-on prime mover to which are attached a number of individual grass treatment units. In the case of a mower e.g. a golf "greens" mower, the grass treatment module will be a cylindrical mower unit having spiral cutting blades extending around a central shaft, such blades defining a cylindrical cutting surface spaced radially outwardly of the central shaft. However, the invention is applicable to grass treatment machines utilising other types of grass treatment devices or modules, such as a scarifier, so-called "verticut" device, spiker, rotary brush, top dressing brush, sarel roller, and slitter.

In the past, manufacturers supplied a specific unit for each task i.e. a mower, scarifier or spiker, and having a chassis, a prime mover to drive the chassis over the ground, and operate the treatment device concerned. The other alternative offered by manufacturers in a limited number of instances has been to supply an alternative grass treatment device, such as a rotary brush or scarifier, which may be built into the chassis of the unit, after having first removed the cylindrical mower mechanism. However, in designs available to date, the mounting and de-mounting of each device in the chassis of the unit is a time-consuming and awkward task necessitating a skilled mechanic, and usually requiring bolts or other fasteners to be tightened and loosened, and bearings to be removed, replaced and/or adjusted. Bearing in mind that such multi-unit ride-on grass treatment machines usually have 3, 5, or 7 units, the time involved has dictated that exchanging such grass treatment device has only been done on a most infrequent basis.

However, the current need for increased worker efficiency coupled with an increasing demand for additional treatments to be regularly carried out on sports turf to improve its condition and playing characteristics, has meant that there is a real need for a way to be found of quickly and easily interchanging a wide range of grass treatment devices within the chassis of such grass treatment units, rather than purchasing many separate sets of specific grass treatment units. The present invention has been developed with a view to providing a chassis for a grass treatment unit having improved means to facilitate mounting and de-mounting of elongate grass/ground treatment modules (e.g. cylindrical or generally cylindrical devices), so that even and unskilled person, such as the mower operator, can quickly and easily interchange a range of grass treatment modules within such chassis.

It is known from US 4,064,679 to provide a multi-use lawn care machine which can be used as a lawn mower, lawn sweeper or snow blower. The machine has a generally cylindrical housing to hold the tool (snow blower reel, lawn mower reel, or lawn sweeper attachment) in use. One side plate of the housing is laterally removable, permitting access to and disconnection of the tool. The side plate is held in position, when assembled, by a considerable number of threaded studs and wing nuts, all of which must be fastened or unfastened during mounting and de-mounting of the tool concerned.

According to the invention, there is provided a chassis as defined in claim 1.

Preferred aspects of the invention are set out in dependent claims 2 to 11.

Preferred embodiments of chassis according to the invention, for mounting in a grass treatment machine will now be described in detail, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

  • Figure 1 is a side view of a first embodiment of the chassis, showing two chassis portions assembled to a closed position in which a generally horizontally extending grass treatment module can be mounted in the chassis ready to carry out a grass treatment'
  • Figure 2 is a side view, but showing the two chassis portions dis-assembled to an open, separated position, permitting access to socket mountings for the ends of the module, to allow easy mounting and de-mounting of the module;
  • Figure 3 is a perspective illustration of a number of different grass treatment modules which can be readily replaceably mounted in the chassis of Figures 1 and 2;
  • Figures 4 and 5 are side views of a second embodiment of chassis, in an assembled condition and separated conditions respectively;
  • Figure 6 is an exploded view of the components of the second embodiment of chassis; and
  • Figures 7a to 7e are side, end and sectional views showing in more detail the constructions of the end mountings of each treatment module.

Referring now to Figures 1 to 3 of the drawings, a chassis according to the invention is designated generally by reference 10, and which is intended to be mounted in, or on the frame of a multi-head grass treatment machine. Each treatment head (unit) therefore is formed by the chassis 10 and has socket mountings 11 which are spaced apart perpendicularly of the direction of travel of the machine and which serve to mount. rotatably the outer ends of the grass treatment module, (which may comprise a cylindrical mower unit, a scarifier unit, a verticut device, a spiker or a brush etc).

The chassis 10 therefore defines two opposed sides which are spaced apart perpendicularly of the direction of travel, and with each side having a respective socket mounting 11 provided therein.

The chassis 10 comprises a forward portion 12 and a rearward portion 13, and which are connected together for movement between an open, separated position shown in Figure 2, and a closed or assembled position shown in Figure 1. In the open position shown in Figure 2, access is permitted to the mounting sockets 11 for the purposes of mounting or de-mounting the ends of the grass treatment module. In the closed position shown in Figure 1, the grass treatment module can be mounted in the chassis ready to carry out an appropriate grass treatment operation.

In the illustrated embodiment, the socket mountings 11 comprise square cross section sockets, and part of the periphery of each socket is defined by one of the portions (three sides of the socket in the case of the rearward portion 13 in the illustrated embodiment), and the remaining part of the circumference (the outwardly opening side defined by the forward portion 12 in the illustrated embodiment) is defined by the other portion.

The two chassis portions 12 and 13 are pivotally connected together via horizontally extending pivot 14, and evidently, from Figure 2, the forward portion 12 is pivotable forwardly and downwardly of the rearward portion 13 in order to take-up the open position, and this makes it particularly quick and easy to mount and de-mount the ends of the module with respect to the socket mountings 11.

The forward portion 12 of the chassis 10 carries a usual front roller 15, and which is vertically adjustable to alter the height of the module above the grass surface. The rearward portion 13 is supported by a rear roller 16.

Although not shown in Figures 1 or 2, when the chassis portions 12 and 13 are moved relatively to the closed or assembled position shown in Figure 1, there will usually be provided simple quick release fasteners, to hold the abutting faces of the chassis portions 12 and 13 in engagement with each other.

The illustrated embodiment therefore provides a simple "break-open" chassis, allowing easy access to the socket mountings so that the outer ends of the module concerned can be easily mounted and de-mounted. The location of the abutting faces of the chassis portions, in the closed position, is not critical, provided that when in the closed position the socket mountings are closed and hold the module ends securely. Also, the two chassis portions should be able to "break-open" to a sufficient extent to allow the mounting and de-mounting of the module concerned.

The modules provided for use with the chassis 10 of the invention may comprise different types of treatment modules (20, 21, 22, 23), as shown in Figure 3. Each side of the chassis may have a mounting flange 17 with two or more different mounting holes 18 to allow different types of drive mechanism e.g. hydraulic motor, to be connected to the mounting flange. Figure 3 shows opposed outer ends 24 of the modules which can be angularly adjusted through 90° increments relative to the mounting sockets 11.

The illustrated embodiment of Figures 1 and 2 also provides a cover plate 19 extending forwardly and upwardly from the chassis portion 13, and the purpose of this is to guide the forward movement of material produced during the grass treatment operation. As an alternative, a guard or cover plate 19 may be formed as a component part of the module which is to be mounted in and de-mounted from the chassis (see Figure 3). Also, as shown in Figures 3, the two portions of the chassis 10 are releasably held together by spring-loaded releasable fastener latches 25.

The illustrated embodiment of chassis according to the invention has an assembled condition, as shown in Figure 1, in which the outer ends of the module can be held in the module mountings, in order to mount the module on the chassis. The embodiment also permits the two chassis portions to be relatively separated in order to provide access to the module mountings, for the purposes of mounting or de-mounting the ends of the module relative to the chassis.

In the illustrated embodiment, movement between the assembled condition shown in Figure 1, and the (separated) open, disassembled condition shown in Figure 2 is achieved simply by pivotally connecting the chassis portions 12 and 13 together via horizontally extending pivot 14. However, it should be understood that the invention contemplates alternative modes of converting the chassis between an assembled condition and a separated condition. By way of example only, although not shown, one main portion of the chassis may form the major part of the socket mounting for the ends of the module, and a further portion of the chassis may be removably connectable thereto, so that such portion can be easily assembled, to complete the formation of the socket mountings and the mounting in position of the module. However, the further portion can be easily removed entirely, to leave the socket mountings open so that a module can be mounted or de-mounted easily. Preferably, a simple slidable inter-engagement may be provided between the main portion of the chassis and the removable chassis portion, together with provision of simple snap-acting or other easily operated fasteners.

Figure 3 shows a spiked treatment module 23 mounted in chassis 10, and with module end plate 24 projecting outwardly of the chassis side and a suitable mounting part (not shown) of the module received by the socket mounting (11). The opposed sides 26 of the chassis 10 (see Figure 3) define the socket mountings, and also have air vents 27 formed in the sides which admit air to the module chamber via hole 29 in an arcuate distance piece 28 which mounts the plate 19 on the cartridge (20, 21, 22).

It should be understood that the provision of two chassis portions (12, 13) is one preferred embodiment of the invention (having an assembled condition and a dis-assembled or separated (release) condition), and that the invention contemplates a chassis which may have an assembly of more than two chassis portions, at least one of which may be separated from the assembly for mounting and de-mounting of the module.

One or more slots may be formed in the side plates of the chassis into which the modules may be slidably mounted. Alternatively, flanges on the chassis may have module mountings onto which the modules can be replaceably mounted, and preferably without need for fastener bolts to complete the assembly.

The primary objective will be to enable the interchanging of modules to be carried out as quickly and simply as possible.

Referring to Figures 4 to 6, there is shown a second embodiment of chassis according to the invention, and in which parts corresponding with those already described are given the same reference numerals, but with the addition of 100.

The main difference in the second embodiment is the way in which the mounting socket 111 is formed by the two chassis portions 112 and 113. As can be seen particularly in Figure 5, each chassis portion defines two sides only of the square-shaped mounting socket (when assembled).

Figure 6 shows an exploded view of the component parts of the chassis, and also of an interchangeable "cartridge" or grass treatment module, provided with a number of "verticut" toothed plates 126, spaced apart along the length of drive shaft 127. This also shows the end plates124 by which the cartridge or module is removably mounted in socket mountings 111, and a suitable square mounting part is provided between the inner and outer of each pair of mounting plates forming the outer ends of the module.

The square mounting part is defined between inner and outer end plates 118a and 118b, shown in Figures 7a to 7e, and is formed by a square cross-section part 118c which slidably fits onto socket mounting 111, with outer end plate 118a located on the outside face of the chassis side, and the inner end plate 118b on the inside face of the chassis side. If required, an adjustment facility (not shown) may be provided between the mounting part 118c and socket mounting 111, to allow height adjustment of the module.


Anspruch[de]
Gehäuse (10) für eine Grasbehandlungseinheit, welches ausgestaltet ist, ein längliches Grasbehandlungsmodul (20, 21, 22, 23) daran zu befestigen, wobei das Gehäuse an dem Rahmen einer Grasbehandlungsmaschine befestigt sein soll und zwei Gehäuseabschnitte (12, 13) umfasst, welche Modulbefestigungen (11) aufweisen, um das Modul an dem Gehäuse zu befestigen, und wobei die Gehäuseabschnitte voneinander trennbar sind, um einen Zugriff zu den Modulbefestigungen bereitzustellen, um das Modul anzubringen oder abzunehmen:

dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass ein Gehäuseabschnitt (12) schwenkbar mit dem anderen Gehäuseabschnitt (13) für eine Bewegung zwischen einer gekoppelten Position, in welcher das Modul in den Modulbefestigungen gehalten werden kann, und einer Freigabeposition, in welcher das Modul von den Modulbefestigungen entfernt werden kann, verbunden ist.
Gehäuse nach Anspruch 1, bei welchem die Gehäuseabschnitte (12, 13) zusammen Fassungsbefestigungen (11), welche Befestigungsteile des Moduls (20) umgeben, definieren, wenn die Abschnitte (12, 13) in der gekoppelten Position sind, und bei welchem Teile der Fassungen (11) entfernbar sind, wenn die Gehäuseabschnitte (12, 13) in der Freigabeposition sind. Gehäuse nach Anspruch 2, bei welchem ein erster Gehäuseabschnitt (13) einen Hauptteil einer jeden Fassungsbefestigung (11) definiert, um damit den entsprechenden Befestigungsteil des Moduls in der Freigabeposition aufzunehmen, und ein zweiter Gehäuseabschnitt (12) einen Nebenteil einer jeden Fassungsbefestigung (11) definiert, welcher die Ausbildung der Fassungsbefestigung vervollständigt, wenn die ersten und zweiten Gehäuseabschnitte (12, 13) relativ zu dem zusammengebauten Zustand beweglich sind. Gehäuse nach Anspruch 3, bei welchem jede Fassungsbefestigung (11) vierseitig ist und der erste Gehäuseabschnitt (13) zwei oder drei Seiten der Fassungsbefestigung (11) definiert und der zweite Gehäuseabschnitt (12) die zwei Seiten oder eine Seite der Fassungsbefestigung (11) definiert. Gehäuse nach Anspruch 4, bei welchem jede Fassungsbefestigung quadratisch ist und das entsprechende Behandlungsmodul (20) über 90 Grad Inkremente einstellbar ist, um ein gefordertes Befestigen des Moduls in der Fassungsbefestigung bereitzustellen. Gehäuse nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, welches ein Paar von gegenüberliegenden Seiten (26) aufweist, die jeweils ein entsprechendes Ende eines Paares von Modulbefestigungen (11) definieren. Gehäuse nach Anspruch 6, bei welchem jede Seite (26) des Gehäuses eine oder mehrere Belüftungsöffnungen (27) darin ausgebildet aufweist, um Luft zu der Modulkammer zuzugeben und einen Ausbringen von Ablagerungen zu fördern. Gehäuse nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, bei welchem das Behandlungsmodul (20, 21, 22, 23) in den Befestigungsfassungen (11) einstellbar befestigbar ist, um eine Höheneinstellung des Moduls zu ermöglichen. Gehäuse nach Anspruch 6, bei welchem ein oder mehrere Schlitze in den Seiten (26) des Gehäuses ausgebildet sind, in welchen die Modulbefestigungen (11) verschiebbar befestigt werden können. Gehäuse nach Anspruch 6, bei welchem das Gehäuse zwei Seitenplatten (26) umfasst, welche querverlaufend bezogen auf die Bewegungsrichtung beabstandet angeordnet sind, und bei welchem die Modulbefestigungen (11) durch Quadrat- oder andere Querschnittsfassungen ausgebildet sind, um die Enden (24) des Moduls (20, 21, 22, 23) aufzunehmen. Mehrfacheinheitgrasbehandlungsmaschine, welche ein Gehäuse nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche umfasst.
Anspruch[en]
A chassis (10) for a grass treatment unit and which is adapted to mount thereon an elongate grass treatment module (20, 21, 22, 23), in which the chassis is intended to be mounted on the frame of a grass treatment machine and comprises two chassis portions (12, 13) having module mountings (11) to mount the module on the chassis, and said chassis portions being relatively separable in order to provide access to the module mountings for the purposes of mounting or de-mounting the module:

characterised in that one chassis portion (12) is pivotally connected to the other chassis portion (13) for movement between an engaged position in which the module can be held in the module mountings and a release position in which the module can be removed from the module mountings.
A chassis according to claim 1, in which the chassis portions (12, 13) together define socket mountings (11) surrounding mounting parts of the module (20), when the portions (12, 13) are in the engaged position, and in which parts of the sockets (11) are movable away when the chassis portions (12, 13) are in the release position. A chassis according to claim 2, in which a first chassis portion (13) defines a major part of each socket mounting (11) whereby to receive the respective mounting part of the module when in the release position, and a second chassis portion (12) defines a minor part of each socket mounting (11) which completes the formation of the socket mounting when the first and second chassis portions (12, 13) are relatively moveable to the assembled condition. A chassis according to claim 3, in which each socket mounting (11) is four sided, and the first chassis portion (13) defines two or three sides of the socket mounting (11), and the second chassis portion (12) defines the two or one side of the socket mounting (11). A chassis according to claim 4, in which each socket mounting is square, and the respective treatment module (20) is adjustable through 90° increments to provide required mounting of the module in the socket mounting. A chassis according to any one of the preceding claims, and having a pair of opposed sides (26) each defining a respective one of a pair of module mountings (11). A chassis according to claim 6, in which each side (26) of the chassis has one or more vents (27) formed therein, to admit air to the module chamber and promote discharge of debris. A chassis according to any one of the preceding claims, in which the treatment module (20, 21, 22, 23) is adjustably mountable in the mounting sockets (11) to permit height adjustment of the module. A chassis according to claim 6, in which one or more slots are formed in the sides (26) of the chassis, into which the module mountings (11) can be slidably mounted. A chassis according to claim 6, in which the chassis comprises two side plates (26) which are spaced apart transversely with respect to the direction of travel, and in which the module mountings (11) are formed by a square or other cross section sockets to receive the ends (24) of the module (20, 21, 22, 23). A multi-unit grass treatment machine incorporating a chassis according to any one of the preceding claims.
Anspruch[fr]
Châssis (10) destiné à une unité de traitement de l'herbe et qui est conçu pour supporter sur lui un module allongé de traitement de l'herbe (20, 21, 22, 23), dans lequel le châssis est prévu pour être monté sur le cadre d'une machine de traitement de l'herbe et comprend deux parties de châssis (12, 13) comportant des moyens de fixation de module (11) afin de monter le module sur le châssis, et lesdites parties de châssis étant séparables relativement afin de fournir un accès aux moyens de fixation de module dans le but de monter ou de démonter le module :

caractérisé en ce qu'une partie de châssis (12) est reliée avec une possibilité de pivotement à l'autre partie de châssis (13) en vue d'un mouvement entre une position en prise dans laquelle le module peut être maintenu dans les moyens de fixation de module et une position de libération dans laquelle le module peut être retiré des moyens de fixation de module.
Châssis selon la revendication 1, dans lequel les parties de châssis (12,13) définissent ensemble des moyens de fixation par emboîtement (11) entourant des pièces de montage du module (20), lorsque les parties (12, 13) se trouvent en prise, et dans lequel des pièces des moyens d'emboîtement (11) peuvent être déplacées à distance lorsque que les parties de châssis (12, 13) se trouvent dans la position de libération. Châssis selon la revendication 2, dans lequel une première partie de châssis (13) définit une pièce principale de chaque moyen de fixation par emboîtement (11) grâce à laquelle il peut recevoir la pièce de montage respective du module lorsqu'il se trouve en position de libération, et une seconde partie de châssis (12) définit une pièce accessoire de chaque moyen de fixation par emboîtement (11) qui complète la formation des moyens de fixation par emboîtement lorsque que les première et seconde parties de châssis (12, 13) peuvent être déplacées relativement vers l'état assemblé. Châssis selon la revendication 3, dans lequel chaque moyen de fixation par emboîtement (11) comporte quatre côtés, la première partie de châssis (13) définit deux ou trois côtés des moyens de fixation par emboîtement (11), et la seconde partie de châssis (12) définit les deux ou l'unique côté des moyens de fixation par emboîtement (11). Châssis selon la revendication 4, dans lequel chaque moyen de fixation par emboîtement est carré, et le module de traitement respectif (20) est ajustable par l'intermédiaire d'incréments de 90° pour fournir le montage requis du module dans les moyens de fixation par emboîtement. Châssis selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes et comportant une paire de côtés opposés (26) définissant chacun un moyen respectif d'une paire de moyens de fixation de module (11). Châssis selon la revendication 6, dans lequel chaque côté (26) du châssis comporte une ou plusieurs lumières (27) formées dans celui-ci afin d'admettre de l'air vers le compartiment de module et favoriser l'éjection de débris. Châssis selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel le module de traitement (20, 21, 22, 23) peut être monté de manière ajustable dans les moyens de fixation par emboîtement (11) afin d'autoriser l'ajustement en hauteur du module. Châssis selon la revendication 6, dans lequel une ou plusieurs fentes sont formées dans les côtés (26) du châssis, dans lesquelles les moyens de fixation de module (11) peuvent être montés avec une possibilité de coulissement. Châssis selon la revendication 6, dans lequel le châssis comprend deux plaques latérales (26) qui sont espacées transversalement par rapport à la direction de trajet, et dans lesquelles les moyens de fixation de module (11) sont formés par des supports carrés ou de tout autre section transversale afin de recevoir les extrémités (24) du module (20, 21, 22, 23). Machine de traitement de l'herbe à unités multiples incorporant un châssis conforme à l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes.






IPC
A Täglicher Lebensbedarf
B Arbeitsverfahren; Transportieren
C Chemie; Hüttenwesen
D Textilien; Papier
E Bauwesen; Erdbohren; Bergbau
F Maschinenbau; Beleuchtung; Heizung; Waffen; Sprengen
G Physik
H Elektrotechnik

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