Login| Sign Up| Help| Contact|

Patent Searching and Data


Title:
COUPLING MEMBERS FOR PIPE MACHINING APPARATUSES
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2016/073166
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Pipe machining apparatuses, coupling members, and methods of assembling pipe machining apparatuses are provided. In one aspect, a coupling member (400) for coupling together a first section (24Α') and a second section (24Β') of a pipe machining apparatus (20') includes a first housing member (404) adapted to couple to the first section, a second housing member (408) adapted to couple to the second section, an arm (412) movably coupled to the first housing member, and an engagement member (460) coupled to the arm. The arm is adapted to move between a coupled condition, in which the engagement member engages the second housing member, and an uncoupled condition, in which the engagement member does not engage the second housing member, wherein the coupling member remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

Inventors:
COAKLEY, Roy C. (155 Harlem AvenueGlenview, Illinois, 60025, US)
Application Number:
US2015/056015
Publication Date:
May 12, 2016
Filing Date:
October 16, 2015
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
ILLINOIS TOOL WORKS INC. (155 Harlem Avenue, Glenview, Illinois, 60025, US)
International Classes:
B23B3/26; B23B5/16; B23D21/04; B23Q9/00
Foreign References:
US20100162860A12010-07-01
US20140190327A12014-07-10
US4791842A1988-12-20
US5549024A1996-08-27
US2635270A1953-04-21
Other References:
None
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
HAUPTMAN, Benjamin J. (Hauptman Ham, LLP2318 Mill Road, Suite 140, Alexandria Virginia, 22314, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS:

1. A pipe machining apparatus comprising:

a first section including a first portion of a frame and a first portion of a tool carrier;

a second section including a second portion of the frame and a second portion of the tool carrier, wherein the first section and the second section are adapted to be coupled together around a pipe, and, with the first and second sections coupled together, the frame is fixed relative to the pipe and the tool carrier is adapted to move relative to the frame and the pipe, and wherein the apparatus has a profile defined by an interior diameter of the frame and an exterior diameter of the frame; and

a coupling member adapted to couple the first section and the second section together, wherein the coupling member is moveable between a coupled condition, in which the coupling member couples the first section and the second section together, and an uncoupled condition, in which the coupling member does not couple the first section and the second section together, and wherein the coupling member remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

2. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 1, wherein the coupling member includes a moveable arm, wherein the arm remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

3. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 1, wherein the coupling member includes

a first housing member coupled to the first section,

a second housing member coupled to the second section, an arm movably coupled to the first housing member, and an engagement member coupled to and moveable with the arm, wherein the engagement member engages the second housing member in the coupled condition and the engagement member does not engage the second housing member in the uncoupled condition, and

wherein the arm remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

4. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 3, wherein the first housing member is coupled to the first portion of the tool carrier on the first section and the second housing member is coupled to the second portion of the tool carrier on the second section.

5. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 3, wherein the arm is rotatably coupled to the first housing member.

6. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 3, wherein the arm includes a threaded portion and the engagement member is adapted to threadably move along the threaded portion of the arm.

7. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 3, wherein the first housing member includes a projection and the second housing member includes a receptacle adapted to receive the projection therein.

8. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 7, wherein the projection includes an angled surface, and wherein, during assembly of the first and second sections, the angled surface of the projection and the receptacle are adapted to engage each other to move the first and second sections into proper alignment for coupling together.

9. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 3, wherein the coupling member is a first coupling member, the pipe machining apparatus further comprising a second coupling member cooperating with the first coupling member to couple the first section and the second section together, the second coupling member including

a third housing member coupled to the first section, a fourth housing member coupled to the second section, a second arm movably coupled to the fourth housing member, and a second engagement member coupled to the second arm, wherein the second engagement member engages the third housing member in the coupled condition and the second engagement member does not engage the third housing member in the uncoupled condition, and wherein the second arm remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

10. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 1, wherein the coupling member is a first coupling member, the pipe machining apparatus further comprising a second coupling member, wherein the second coupling member is moveable between a coupled condition, in which the second coupling member couples the first section and the second section together, and an uncoupled condition, in which the second coupling member does not couple the first section and the second section together, and wherein the second coupling member remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

11. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 10, wherein the first coupling member includes a first moveable arm and the second coupling member includes a second moveable arm, wherein the first and second arms remain within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

12. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 1, wherein the first section and the second section are substantially semi-circular in shape.

A pipe machining apparatus comprising: a first section including a first portion of a frame and a first portion of a tool carrier, wherein the first section defines an aperture therein;

a second section including a second portion of the frame and a second portion of the tool carrier, wherein the second section defines a bore therein, wherein the first section and the second section are adapted to be coupled together around a pipe, and, with the first and second sections coupled together:

the frame is fixed relative to the pipe, the tool carrier is adapted to move relative to the frame and the pipe, and

the aperture and the bore are aligned with each other; and a coupling member positioned in the aligned aperture and bore to selectively couple the first section and the second section together, wherein the coupling member is moveable between a coupled condition, in which the coupling member couples the first section and the second section together, and an uncoupled condition, in which the coupling member does not couple the first section and the second section together.

14. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 13, wherein the aperture includes internal threads and the coupling member includes a threaded portion, wherein the threaded portion of the coupling member engages the internal threads of the aperture in the coupled condition to threadably couple the first and second sections together.

15. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 13, further comprising a resilient member, wherein the resilient member engages and retains the coupling member in the uncoupled position to inhibit movement of the coupling member to the coupled condition.

16. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 15, wherein the coupling member defines a slot, wherein the resilient member is positioned in the slot when the coupling member is in the uncoupled condition and wherein the resilient member is not positioned in the slot when the coupling member is in the coupled condition.

17. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 16, further comprising a retainer positioned in the bore to retain the resilient member in the bore.

18. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 13, further comprising a key member configured to inhibit the first section and the second section from twisting relative to each other.

19. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 18, wherein one of the first section and the second section define a key aperture therein, and wherein the key member is positioned in the key aperture.

20. The pipe machining apparatus of claim 19, wherein the key member led to the one of the first section and the second section by a fastener.

Description:
COUPLING MEMBERS FOR PIPE MACHINING APPARATUSES RELATED APPLICATIONS

[001] The present application is a continuation-in-part of U.S. Non-Provisional Patent Application No. 13/796,121, filed March 12, 2013, which claims the benefit of co-pending U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 61/709,571, filed October 4, 2012, the contents of all of which are incorporated by reference herein.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[002] The present disclosure generally relates to pipe machining apparatuses and, more particularly, to pipe machining apparatuses for machining large diameter pipes.

BACKGROUND

[003] A variety of different types of pipe machining apparatuses exist to perform various machining processes on pipes. One such process includes cutting pipes. Large diameter pipes may be cut with a split frame pipe machining apparatus, which includes two frame halves that surround the pipe from respective sides and are coupled together around the pipe. Such a pipe cutter includes a tool or cutting device that encircles the pipe and moves toward the pipe in small increments during the cutting process in order to slowly cut into the pipe. Eventually, after many small increments of adjustment toward the pipe, the pipe will be completely cut. [004] The frame halves of a split frame pipe machining apparatus are generally semi-circular in shape and each frame half includes two split line mating surfaces. The split line mating surfaces of the two halves come together and engage each other when the two halves are coupled together. Dowel pins project from one of the split line mating surfaces on each side of the halves and associated dowel holes are defined in the other of the split line mating surfaces on each side of the halves. The dowel pins are received in the dowel holes to properly align the two frame halves prior to coupling the two halves together. In order for the dowel pins to be received in the dowel holes, the pins must first be aligned with the holes, then moved into the holes. Since numerous dowel pins are included on both sides of the halves, alignment of numerous pin-and-hole pairings must be achieved before the pins can be moved into the holes. Aligning numerous pin-and-hole pairings can be a cumbersome task. Moreover, binding can occur if the dowel pins are not properly aligned with the dowel holes, thereby making assembly and disassembly of the two frame halves difficult. Furthermore, a high degree of machining accuracy is required when forming the split line mating surfaces. That is, the split line matting surfaces must be parallel to a rotational axis of the pipe machining apparatus to ensure proper mating and coupling.

SUMMARY

[005] The present disclosure is defined by the following claims, and nothing in this section should be taken as a limitation on those claims. [006] In one aspect, a pipe machining apparatus is provided and includes a first section including a first portion of a frame and a first portion of a tool carrier, and a second section including a second portion of the frame and a second portion of the tool carrier. The first section and the second section are adapted to be coupled together around a pipe, and, with the first and second sections coupled together, the frame is fixed relative to the pipe and the tool carrier is adapted to move relative to the frame and the pipe. The pipe machining apparatus also includes a coupling member adapted to couple the first section and the second section together. The coupling member includes a first housing member coupled to the first section, a second housing member coupled to the second section, an arm movably coupled to the first housing member, and an engagement member coupled to the arm. The arm is adapted to move between a coupled condition, in which the engagement member engages the second housing member, and an uncoupled condition, in which the engagement member does not engage the second housing member.

[007] In one aspect, a coupling member for coupling together a first section and a second section of a pipe machining apparatus is provided. The coupling member includes a first housing member adapted to couple to the first section, a second housing member adapted to couple to the second section, an arm movably coupled to the first housing member, and an engagement member coupled to the arm. The arm is adapted to move between a coupled condition, in which the engagement member engages the second housing member, and an uncoupled condition, in which the engagement member does not engage the second housing member. [008] In one aspect, a method of assembling a pipe machining apparatus including a first section and a second section is provided. The method includes moving the first section toward the second section and engaging a first housing member of a coupling member with a second housing member of the coupling member. The first housing member is coupled to the first section and the second housing member is coupled to the second section. The method also includes moving an arm coupled to the first housing member to a coupled condition, in which an engagement member of the arm engages the second housing member, from an uncoupled condition, in which the engagement member does not engage the second housing member.

[009] In one aspect, a pipe machining apparatus is provided and includes a first section including a first portion of a frame and a first portion of a tool carrier, and a second section including a second portion of the frame and a second portion of the tool carrier. The first section and the second section are adapted to be coupled together around a pipe, and, with the first and second sections coupled together, the frame is fixed relative to the pipe and the tool carrier is adapted to move relative to the frame and the pipe. The apparatus has a profile defined by an interior diameter of the frame and an exterior diameter of the frame. The apparatus also includes a coupling member adapted to couple the first section and the second section together. The coupling member is moveable between a coupled condition, in which the coupling member couples the first section and the second section together, and an uncoupled condition, in which the coupling member does not couple the first section and the second section together. The coupling member remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

[0010] In one aspect, the coupling member includes a moveable arm, and the arm remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

[0011] In one aspect, the coupling member includes a first housing member coupled to the first section, a second housing member coupled to the second section, an arm movably coupled to the first housing member, and an engagement member coupled to and moveable with the arm. The engagement member engages the second housing member in the coupled condition and the engagement member does not engage the second housing member in the uncoupled condition. The arm remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

[0012] In one aspect, the first housing member is coupled to the first portion of the tool carrier on the first section and the second housing member is coupled to the second portion of the tool carrier on the second section.

[0013] In one aspect, the arm is rotatably coupled to the first housing member.

[0014] In one aspect, the arm includes a threaded portion and the engagement member is adapted to threadably move along the threaded portion of the arm.

[0015] In one aspect, the first housing member includes a projection and the second housing member includes a receptacle adapted to receive the projection therein. [0016] In one aspect, the projection includes an angled surface. During assembly of the first and second sections, the angled surface of the projection and the receptacle are adapted to engage each other to move the first and second sections into proper alignment for coupling together.

[0017] In one aspect, the coupling member is a first coupling member. The pipe machining apparatus further includes a second coupling member cooperating with the first coupling member to couple the first section and the second section together. The second coupling member includes a third housing member coupled to the first section, a fourth housing member coupled to the second section, a second arm movably coupled to the fourth housing member, and a second engagement member coupled to the second arm. The second engagement member engages the third housing member in the coupled condition and the second engagement member does not engage the third housing member in the uncoupled condition. The second arm remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

[0018] In one aspect, the coupling member is a first coupling member. The pipe machining apparatus further includes a second coupling member. The second coupling member is moveable between a coupled condition, in which the second coupling member couples the first section and the second section together, and an uncoupled condition, in which the second coupling member does not couple the first section and the second section together. The second coupling member remains within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition. [0019] In one aspect, the first coupling member includes a first moveable arm and the second coupling member includes a second moveable arm. The first and second arms remain within the profile of the apparatus in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

[0020] In one aspect, the first section and the second section are substantially semi-circular in shape.

[0021] In one aspect, a pipe machining apparatus is provided and includes a first section including a first portion of a frame and a first portion of a tool carrier. The first section defines an aperture therein. The apparatus also includes a second section including a second portion of the frame and a second portion of the tool carrier. The second section defines a bore therein. The first section and the second section are adapted to be coupled together around a pipe, and, with the first and second sections coupled together: the frame is fixed relative to the pipe; the tool carrier is adapted to move relative to the frame and the pipe; and the aperture and the bore are aligned with each other. The apparatus further includes a coupling member positioned in the aligned aperture and bore to selectively couple the first section and the second section together. The coupling member is moveable between a coupled condition, in which the coupling member couples the first section and the second section together, and an uncoupled condition, in which the coupling member does not couple the first section and the second section together.

[0022] In one aspect, the aperture includes internal threads and the coupling member includes a threaded portion. The threaded portion of the coupling member engages the internal threads of the aperture in the coupled condition to threadably couple the first and second sections together.

[0023] In one aspect, the apparatus further includes a resilient member. The resilient member engages and retains the coupling member in the uncoupled position to inhibit movement of the coupling member to the coupled condition.

[0024] In one aspect, the coupling member defines a slot. The resilient member is positioned in the slot when the coupling member is in the uncoupled condition and wherein the resilient member is not positioned in the slot when the coupling member is in the coupled condition.

[0025] In one aspect, the apparatus further includes a retainer positioned in the bore to retain the resilient member in the bore.

[0026] In one aspect, the apparatus further includes a key member configured to inhibit the first section and the second section from twisting relative to each other.

[0027] In one aspect, one of the first section and the second section define a key aperture therein. The key member is positioned in the key aperture.

[0028] In one aspect, the key member is coupled to the one of the first section and the second section by a fastener.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0029] The disclosure can be better understood with reference to the following drawings and description. The components in the figures are not necessarily to scale, emphasis instead being placed upon illustrating the principles of the disclosure. [0030] Fig. 1 is a top front perspective view of an exemplary pipe machining apparatus coupled to a pipe, the pipe machining apparatus is shown with a pair of exemplary coupling members in a coupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0031] Fig. 2 is a bottom rear perspective view of the pipe machining apparatus illustrated in Fig. 1 , in accordance with one embodiment.

[0032] Fig. 3 is a front view of the pipe machining apparatus illustrated in Fig. 1 with a portion thereof broken away to show internal components of the pipe machining apparatus, and one of the coupling members illustrated in Fig. 1 is shown in a coupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0033] Fig. 4 is a front view of the pipe machining apparatus illustrated in Fig. 1 with two sections of the pipe machining apparatus disassembled from one another and the pair of exemplary coupling members in an uncoupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0034] Fig. 5 is a bottom perspective view of a portion of the pipe machining apparatus shown in Fig. 1 with the two sections of the pipe machining apparatus disassembled and one of the coupling members shown in an uncoupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0035] Fig. 6 is a top perspective view of a portion of the pipe machining apparatus shown in Fig. 1 with the two sections of the pipe machining apparatus disassembled and one of the coupling members shown in an uncoupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment. [0036] Fig. 7 is a left side view of the pipe machining apparatus shown in Fig. 1 with the two sections of the pipe machining apparatus assembled and one of the coupling members shown in a coupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0037] Fig. 8 is an enlarged front view of the pipe machining apparatus shown in Fig. 1 with a portion thereof broken away in accordance with reference line 8— 8 in Fig. 7 to illustrate internal components of one of the coupling members in a coupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0038] Fig. 9 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 9— 9 in Fig. 7 to show an exemplary detent mechanism of one of the coupling members, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0039] Fig. 10 is a perspective view of an end of one of the split frame sections of the pipe machining apparatus shown in Fig. 1 with an exemplary alignment receptacle, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0040] Fig. 11 is a perspective view of an end of one of the split frame sections of the pipe machining apparatus shown in Fig. 1 with an exemplary alignment projection, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0041] Fig. 12 is a top front perspective view of another exemplary pipe machining apparatus coupled to a pipe, the pipe machining apparatus is shown with a pair of exemplary coupling members in a coupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment. [0042] Fig. 13 is a front view of the pipe machining apparatus illustrated in Fig. 12, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0043] Fig. 14 is a front view of the pipe machining apparatus illustrated in Fig. 12 with two sections of the pipe machining apparatus disassembled from one another and the pair of exemplary coupling members in an uncoupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0044] Fig. 15 is a bottom perspective view of a portion of the pipe machining apparatus shown in Fig. 12 with the two sections of the pipe machining apparatus disassembled and one of the coupling members shown in an uncoupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0045] Fig. 16 is a top perspective view of a portion of the pipe machining apparatus shown in Fig. 12 with the two sections of the pipe machining apparatus disassembled and one of the coupling members shown in an uncoupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0046] Fig. 17 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 17— 17 in Fig. 13, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0047] Fig. 18 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 18— 18 in Fig. 12 with one example of a first coupling member shown in a coupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment.

[0048] Fig. 19 is a cross-sectional view similar to Fig. 18 with the first coupling member shown in an uncoupled condition, in accordance with one embodiment. DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0049] With reference to Figs. 1-3, there is shown one exemplary embodiment of a pipe machining apparatus 20 adapted to machine pipes P of varying diameters. In some exemplary embodiments, the apparatus 20 completely cuts through pipes P. In other exemplary embodiments, the apparatus 20 prepares an end of a pipe P for coupling to another pipe. In still other exemplary embodiments, the apparatus 20 both completely cuts and prepares a pipe P for coupling to another pipe.

[0050] In the illustrated exemplary embodiment, pipe machining apparatus 20 is formed of two joined- together semicircular sections 24A, 24B and includes a frame 28 and a tool carrier 32. The two sections 24A, 24B together comprise the frame 28 and the tool carrier 32 such that a first portion of the frame 28 and a first portion of the tool carrier 32 is included in one section 24A and a second portion of the frame 28 and a second portion of the tool carrier 32 is included in the other section 24B. The frame 28 has a column 36 extending outwardly of the two semicircular sections 24A, 24B and houses a pinion gear 40 adapted to couple with a suitable drive motor 44, such as an air motor with suitable gear reduction means. The frame 28 is adapted to couple and be fixed relative to a pipe P, and the tool carrier 32 is rotatable relative to the fixed frame 28 and the pipe P. The air motor 44 is adapted to rotate the tool carrier 32 relative to the frame 28 through a gear train in the column 36. The tool carrier 32 has a circular gear rack 56 for meshing with the pinion gear 40 rotatably mounted in column 36. The pinion gear 40 has an opening 60 provided with a polygonal perimeter for receiving a complementary shaped drive head 64 of drive motor 44. Therefore, it can be seen that drive motor 44 is adapted to rotate tool carrier 32 relative to the frame 28 through a gear train provided by pinion gear 40 in column 36 and circular gear rack 56 on the tool carrier 32.

[0051] The rotatable tool carrier 32 includes one or more tool supports 48 (two tool supports shown in the illustrated exemplary embodiment), which support tools 52 for performing a cutting or machining operation on the pipe P as the tools 52 rotate circumferentially about the pipe P. The machining operation performed by the tool(s) 52 may form a straight edge perpendicular to a longitudinal extent of the pipe P, a bevel on an end of the pipe P that is transverse to the longitudinal extent of the pipe P and at an angle other than ninety degrees, or an edge of a pipe P having any angle relative to the longitudinal extent of the pipe P.

[0052] The apparatus 20 further includes four adjustable clamp members or coupling members 68 engageable with an exterior of the pipe P and having suitable adjustability to couple and concentrically locate the apparatus 20 to the pipe P.

[0053] As best seen in Fig. 3, tool carrier 32 is rotatably mounted on and supported by frame 28 by a plurality of roller bearings 72. The roller bearings 72 ride in a circular bearing race 76 defined in the interior of tool carrier 32.

[0054] A plurality of projections 80 are adjustably movable into and out of a path of an advancement member 84 coupled to each tool support 48 to advance the tool 52 toward the pipe P. In the illustrated exemplary embodiment, the apparatus 20 includes a total of two projections 80 for engaging the advancement members 84, however, the apparatus 20 may have any number of projections 80. Each projection 80 is coupled to a lever 88 that may be actuated by a user to selectively move the projection 80 into and out of the path of the advancement members 84.

[0055] With continued reference to Figs. 1-3 and additional reference to Fig. 4, the apparatus 20 includes a split line 92 where the two sections 24A, 24B separate and come together. Each section 24A, 24B includes two ends 96 with each end of the tool carrier 32 including a mating surface 100. When the apparatus 20 is assembled as shown in Fig. 3, mating surfaces 100 on corresponding ends 96 of tool carrier 32 of the sections 24A, 24B may engage each other and the two sections 24A, 24B may be coupled together.

[0056] The apparatus 20 includes a pair of first coupling members 104, one on each side of the apparatus 20, that are inline with and coupled to the frame 28. Each of the first coupling members 104 includes a first end 108 pivotally coupled to sections 24B of the frame 28 in a recess 112 and a second threaded end 116 including an adjustable engagement member 120 that may be threaded along the threaded end 116. A second recess 124 is defined in both sides of section 24A of the frame 28 and each second recess 124 is adapted to receive the engagement member 120 of the corresponding first coupling member 104. The second recess 124 defines a seat 128 adapted to receive the engagement member 120 and assist with retaining the engagement member 120 in the second recess 124.

[0057] With reference to Figs. 1, 2, and 7, one of the first coupling members 104 is illustrated in a coupled condition, in which the engagement member 120 is positioned in the seat 128 of the second recess 124 and tightened down to assist in securing sections 24 A, 24B together. To move the first coupling member 104 to the uncoupled condition illustrated in Figs. 4-6, the engagement member 120 is threadably loosened along the threaded end 116 of the first coupling member 104 to move the engagement member 120 out of the seat 128, and the first coupling member 104 is rotated about its first end 108 until the engagement member 120 is completely out of the second recess 124. The first recess 112 is shaped to facilitate swinging and rotating of the first end 108 of the first coupling member 104. Moreover, the first recess 112 can be shaped to control the extent to which the first coupling member 104 rotates toward the uncoupled condition as illustrated in Figs. 4-6. The pair of first coupling members 104 may be swung between coupled and uncoupled conditions as desired by a user to respectively couple and uncouple the two sections 24A, 24B of the apparatus 20.

[0058] Referring now to Figs. 1 and 3-8, the apparatus 20 further includes a pair of second coupling members 132, one on each side of the apparatus 20, that are coupled to the tool carrier 32. Thus, the pair of second coupling members 132 rotate with the tool carrier 32 relative to the frame 28 during operation of the apparatus 20. The pair of second coupling members 132 are substantially identical in structure and function. Thus, only one of the second coupling members 132 will be described herein in detail. However, the description presented herein pertaining to one of the second coupling members 132 applies similarly to both second coupling members 132.

[0059] With continued reference to Figs. 1 and 3-8, each second coupling member 132 includes a first housing member 136 coupled to the tool carrier 32 on a respective section 24A, 24B of the apparatus 20, a second housing member 140 coupled to the tool carrier 32 on the other of the sections 24A, 24B, and an arm 144 rotatably coupled at a first end 148 thereof to the first housing member 136.

[0060] The first housing member 136 couples to the tool carrier 32 with a plurality of fasteners 152. The first housing member 136 of one of the second coupling members 132 is coupled to the tool carrier 32 included in section 24B of the apparatus 20 and the first housing member 136 of the other of the second coupling members 132 is coupled to the tool carrier 32 included in section 24A of the apparatus 20. The orientation of the first housing member 136 may be adjusted by loosening the fasteners 152, rotating or otherwise moving the first housing member 136, then tightening the fasteners 152 to secure the first housing member 136 to the tool carrier 32. The first housing member 136 includes a mating surface 156 that is substantially flat and defines a recess 160 allowing rotation of the arm 144 and controlling the extent to which the arm 144 can rotate toward the uncoupled condition. The first housing member 136 also includes a projection 164 extending beyond the flat mating surface 156 of the first housing member 136 and beyond the mating surface 100 of the respective end 96 of the tool carrier 32. The projection 164 includes arcuate side surfaces 168 and flat opposing front and rear surfaces 176, 180. A chamfer or bevel 184 may be defined on edges of the projection 164.

[0061] The second housing member 140 couples to the tool carrier 32 with a plurality of fasteners 188. The second housing member 140 of one of the second coupling members 132 is coupled to the tool carrier 32 included in section 24A of the apparatus 20 and the second housing member 140 of the other of the second coupling members 132 is coupled to the tool carrier 32 included in section 24B of the apparatus 20. The orientation of the second housing member 140 may be fixed by a dowel pin 216 in combination with fasteners 188. The second housing member 140 includes a mating surface 192 that is substantially flat and defines a recess 196 therein allowing rotation of the arm 144 and controlling the extent to which the arm 144 can rotate toward a coupled condition. A seat 200 is defined in the second housing member 140 for receiving an engagement member 204 of the arm 144 and assists with maintaining the arm 144 in the coupled condition. The seat 200 is generally flat and is disposed on both sides of the recess 196. The second housing member 140 also defines a receptacle 208 therein for receiving the projection 164 of the first housing member 136. The receptacle 208 is defined by a pair of arcuate surfaces 212, a protrusion 220 on the second housing member 140 defining one side of the receptacle 208, and a surface 224 of the tool carrier 32 defining an opposing side of the receptacle 208.

[0062] With further reference to Figs. 1 and 3-8, and additional reference to Fig. 9, the arm 144 is rotatably coupled at one end to a shaft 228, which is coupled to the first housing member 136. The arm 144 includes an aperture 232 there through for receiving the shaft 228. The arm 144 also includes an opposing threaded end 236 and the engagement member 204 threadably movable along the threaded end 236.

[0063] With continued reference to Figs. 1 and 3-9, the shaft 228 extends along a longitudinal axis 229 that is oriented substantially parallel to a central rotational axis 22 of the apparatus 20. The central rotational axis 22 of the apparatus 20 may also extend through a longitudinal center of a pipe P when the apparatus 20 is coupled to the pipe P. In other words, the longitudinal axis 229 is generally perpendicular to the surface 224 of the tool carrier 32. The arm 144 rotates about the axis 229 between the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition. The arm 144 rotates beyond a profile of the apparatus 20 defined by an interior diameter 230 of the apparatus 20 and an exterior diameter 231 of the apparatus 20 when the arm 144 is in the uncoupled condition (see Figs. 4-6), but remains within the profile of the apparatus 20 when in the coupled condition (see Figs. 3, 8 and 9).

[0064] The second coupling member 132 further includes a detent mechanism 240 (see Fig. 9) for selectively retaining the arm 144 in the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition. The detent mechanism 240 comprises a pair of spaced-apart indentations 244 defined in one end of the arm 144, a retaining member 248, and a biasing member 252. The biasing member 248 is disposed in a cavity 256 defined in the first housing member 136 and engages the retaining member 248 to bias the retaining member 248 toward the arm 144. With reference to Fig. 9, the second coupling member 132 is shown in the coupled condition and the retaining member 248 is biased into one of the indentations 244 associated with the coupled condition. After loosening of the engagement member 204, the arm 144 remains in the orientation illustrated in Fig. 9 due to the detent mechanism 240. A user may apply sufficient force to the arm 144 to overcome the force applied to the arm 144 by the detent mechanism 240 and move the arm 144 toward the uncoupled condition. When the arm 144 moves into the uncoupled condition, the retaining member 248 is biased into the other indentation 244 associated with the uncoupled condition. The detent mechanism 240 maintains the arm 144 in the uncoupled condition until a user applies a sufficient force to overcome the force applied to the arm 144 by the detent mechanism 240.

[0065] The second coupling members 132 perform a variety of functions. First, the second coupling members 132 assist with guiding the two sections 24A, 24B into proper alignment with each other in preparation of coupling the two sections 24A, 24B together. Second, the second coupling members 132 provide a user with a manner of quickly and easily retaining the sections 24A, 24B together around a pipe P prior to complete and final coupling of the two sections 24A, 24B by quickly flipping the arms 144 to the coupled condition and the arms 144 being retained in the coupled condition by the detent mechanism 240. Third, the second coupling members 132, along with the first coupling members 104, assist with finally and completely coupling the two sections 24A, 24B of the apparatus 20 together. Fourth, with the use of the second coupling members 132, the mating surfaces 100 of the ends 96 of the tool carrier 32 of sections 24 A, 24B do not need to be machined or manufactured to include such a high degree of tolerance. The second coupling members 132 are adapted to achieve other functions not explicitly identified herein, but apparent to those having ordinary skill in the art, and all of such functions are intended to be within the spirit and scope of the present disclosure.

[0066] Referring now to Fig. 4, the two sections 24A, 24B of the apparatus 20 are shown in an uncoupled or disassembled condition. To assemble the two sections 24A, 24B, the ends 96 of the two sections 24A, 24B are generally aligned and moved toward one another. With additional reference to Figs. 5 and 6, as the ends 96 of the two sections 24A, 24B draw close together, the projections 164 of the first housing members 136 begin to insert into the receptacles 208 of the second housing members 140. The chamfered edges 184 and arcuate surfaces 168 of the projections 164, along with the complementary shape of the receptacles 208, accommodate situations where the two sections 24A, 24B are not exactly properly aligned. More particularly, the projections 164 and receptacles 208 engage each other and guide the two sections 24A, 24B into the ultimate proper alignment as the two sections 24 A, 24B move together. The chamfered edges 184 and arcuate surfaces 168 of the projections 164 and the shape of the receptacles 208 generally provide a ramp engagement such that any portion of the projections 164 can engage any portion of the receptacles 208 and the projections 164 will ride along the interiors of the receptacles 208 until the projections 164 are guided into and properly seated within the receptacles 208 as illustrated in Figs. 8 and 9.

[0067] Once the first and second housing members 136, 140 are adequately brought together, the arm 144 may be swung from the uncoupled condition illustrated in Figs. 4-6 to the coupled condition shown in Figs. 3 and 7-9. The retaining member 248 of the detent mechanism 240 inserts into the indentation 244 associated with the coupled condition to retain the arm 144 in the coupled condition. The engagement member 204 may then be threaded toward and into the seat 200 of the second housing member 140. The engagement member 204 is threaded until an adequate amount of tightening has been achieved. The first coupling members 104 may also be tightened to assist with securing the two sections 24A, 24B together.

[0068] When the second coupling members 132 and the two sections 24A, 24B are in the completely coupled condition (see Figs. 7-9), the arcuate surfaces 168 of the projection 164 engage the arcuate surfaces 212 of the receptacle 208, the flat rear surface 180 of the projection 164 engages the surface 224 of the tool carrier 32, and the opposing flat front surface 176 of the projection 164 engages the protrusion 220 of the receptacle 208. Thus, the second housing member 140 has portions thereof on multiple sides (e.g., top, front, rear, left, and right) of the projection 164 of the first housing member 136, thereby inhibiting movement of the first and second housing members 136, 140 relative to each other in multiple directions (e.g., forward, rearward, upward, left, and right).

[0069] When coupling the two sections 24A, 24B of the apparatus 20 together, some portions of the two sections 24A, 24B near the ends 96 of the two sections 24A, 24B need to abut and mate to facilitate a proper coupling of the two sections 24A, 24B. In conventional split frame pipe machining apparatuses, mating surfaces at the ends of the tool carrier are the surfaces that must abut and mate in an appropriate manner in order to adequately couple the two sections together. If the mating surfaces of the tool carrier ends were not properly toleranced or if the dowel pins were not appropriately inserted into the associated holes (conventional manner of aligning ends of sections— see Background), the two sections could not be properly coupled. Ensuring that the mating surfaces of the tool carrier ends of the two sections were properly machined to an appropriate degree of tolerance or ensuring the dowel pins and associated holes were adequately aligned and inserted can be a complicated, time consuming, and costly process, and even after taking all of these necessary steps still may not result in proper coupling of the ends of the sections.

[0070] The apparatus 20 illustrated and described herein relies on the mating surfaces 156, 192 of the first and second housing members 136, 140 to abut and mate, rather than the mating surfaces 100 of the tool carrier ends 96 of the two sections 24A, 24B, to facilitate a proper coupling of the two sections 24A, 24B. The process for ensuring proper tolerancing of the mating surfaces 156, 192 of the first and second housing members 136, 140 can be easier, quicker, and less costly. Additionally, the orientation of the first housing member 136 may be adjusted relative to the fixed second housing member 140 to ensure proper mating of the mating surfaces 156, 192. By utilizing the mating surfaces 156, 192 of the first and second housing members 136, 140, the mating surfaces 100 of the tool carrier ends 96 of the two sections 24A, 24B do not need to be tolerance to such a high degree, thereby potentially saving time, effort, and money when manufacturing the apparatus 20.

[0071] Referring now to Figs. 5, 6, 10, and 11, the apparatus 20 further includes an alignment projection 260 and an alignment receptacle 264 complimentarily shaped to receive the alignment projection 260 therein. In the illustrated exemplary embodiment, the alignment projection 260 and the alignment receptacle 264 are inserts coupled to the frame 28 in ends of the two sections 24A, 24B. In other exemplary embodiments, the alignment projection 260 and alignment receptacle 264 may be unitarily formed as one-piece with the frame 28 of the two sections 24A, 24B. Also, in embodiments where the alignment projection 260 and alignment receptacle 264 are inserts, the inserts may be made of a different material than the frame 28 such as, for example, the frame 28 may be aluminum and the inserts may be steel. Each alignment projection 260 includes two portions, with each portion including angled exterior surfaces 268 and chamfered edges 272 to provide a ramp-like member. Each alignment receptacle 264 includes two compartments, one for receiving a corresponding one of the two portions of the alignment projection 260. The compartments include angled side surfaces 276 that also act like a ramp surface. Upon coupling the two sections 24A, 24B together, the alignment projections 260 insert into the alignment receptacles 264, which may bring the angled exterior surfaces 268 of the alignment projections 260 into the angled side surfaces 276 of the receptacles 264. The ramp-like surfaces ride along each other to position the alignment projections 260 in the proper location within the alignment receptacles 264, thereby also positioning the two sections 24A, 24B in the proper position relative to one another. The alignment projections 260 and alignment receptacles 264 cooperate with the second coupling members 132 to ensure easy, quick, and proper alignment of the two sections 24A, 24B for coupling.

[0072] With reference to Figs. 12-19, there is shown another exemplary embodiment of a pipe machining apparatus 20' adapted to machine pipes P' of varying diameters. Components of the pipe machining apparatus 20' shown in Figs. 12-19 similar to components of the pipe machining apparatus 20 shown in Figs. 1-11 include the same reference number and a " ' ".

[0073] With continued reference to Figs. 12-19, the apparatus 20' includes a split line 92' where the two sections 24A', 24B' separate and come together. Each section 24A', 24B' includes two ends 96' with each end of the tool carrier 32' including a mating surface 100'. When the apparatus 20' is assembled as shown in Fig. 13, mating surfaces 100' on corresponding ends 96' of tool carrier 32' of the sections 24A', 24B' may engage each other and the two sections 24A', 24B' may be coupled together.

[0074] The apparatus 20' includes a pair of first coupling members 300, one on each side of the apparatus 20', that are inline with and coupled to the frame 28'. In this example, the break line 92' is not linear or planar and, instead, has a generally zig-zag shape. In the illustrated example, ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B' include a first pair of matting surfaces 100A' arranged transversely and non-radial to the central longitudinal axis 22' of the apparatus 20' in a first direction, a second pair of mating surfaces 100B' arranged transversely and non- radial to the central longitudinal axis 22' in a second direction, and a third pair of mating surfaces 100C arranged in a third direction generally perpendicular to and radial to the central longitudinal axis 22'.

[0075] In the illustrated example, the first coupling members 300 are threaded fasteners. In other examples, the first coupling members 300 may be other types of coupling members coupling the ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B' together in other manners. The first coupling members 300 and associated structure of the apparatus 20' and, therefore, only one of the first coupling members 300 will be described here in detail.

[0076] Each of the first coupling members 300 includes a head 302 and a shank 304. The head 302 is positioned at a first end of the first coupling member 300 and a threaded portion 306 is positioned at a second end of the first coupling member 300. The threaded portion 306 cooperates with an internal threaded aperture 308 defined in the frame 28' (one aperture 308 defined in an end 96' of one section 24A' and one aperture 308 defined in an end 96' of the other section 24B'). A bore 310 is defined in each end 96' of two sections 24A', 24B' and is alignable with a respective one of the apertures 308. The first coupling members 300 are received in the aperture 308 and bore 310 when they are aligned and the mating surfaces 100A', 100B', 100C may be respectively engaged.

[0077] The shank 304 has a portion 312 with a first size or first diameter, a portion 314 with a second size or second diameter, and a slot 316 defined therein to provide a third size or third diameter. A resilient member 318 is retained within the bore 310 by a retainer 320. In the illustrated example, the resilient member 318 is an O-ring. In other examples, the resilient member 318 may be other types of resilient members. A first bushing 322 is positioned in an end of the aperture 308 and a second bushing 324 is positioned in an end of the bore 310.

[0078] A key aperture 326 is defined in the frame 28' near ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B'. A key member 328 is positioned in the key aperture 326 and is coupled to the frame 28' with a fastener 330. In the illustrated example, the fastener 330 is a threaded fastener and the key member 328 is threadably coupled to the frame 28'. In other examples, the fastener 330 may be other types of fasteners and the key member 328 may be coupled to the frame 28' in other manners. The key member 328 is configured to inhibit the ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B from twisting relative to each other.

[0079] The first coupling members 300 are moveable between a coupled condition (see Fig. 18) and an uncoupled condition (see Fig. 19) to selectively couple ends 96' of the two sections 24 A', 24B' together. In the coupled condition shown in Fig. 18, the head 302 of the first coupling member 300 engages the retainer 320 and the threaded portion 306 is securely and tightly threaded into the threaded aperture 308 to securely couple the ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B' together. The portion 314 of the shank 304 having the second diameter is positioned within or aligned with the first and second bushings 322, 324. The second diameter 314 of the shank 304 and internal cavities 332, 334 of the bushings 322, 324 are complementary sized to provide a sufficiently close relationship.

[0080] To move the first coupling member 300 to the uncoupled position shown in Fig. 19, the first coupling member 300 is unthreaded from the internally threaded aperture 308 and retracted out of the bore 310 until the resilient member 318 is moved into the slot 316 defined in the shank 304. Engagement between the resilient member 318 and the slot 316 frictionally retain the first coupling member 300 in the uncoupled position until a user overcomes the friction engagement between the resilient member 318 and the slot 316. [0081] Referring now to Figs. 12-17, the apparatus 20 further includes a pair of second coupling members 400, one on each side of the apparatus 20', that are coupled to the tool carrier 32'. Thus, the pair of second coupling members 400 rotate with the tool carrier 32' relative to the frame 28' during operation of the apparatus 20'. The pair of second coupling members 400 are substantially identical in structure and function. Thus, only one of the second coupling members 400 will be described herein in detail. However, the description presented herein pertaining to one of the second coupling members 400 applies similarly to both second coupling members 400.

[0082] With continued reference to Figs. 12-17, each second coupling member 400 includes a first housing member 404 coupled to the tool carrier 32' on a respective section 24A', 24B' of the apparatus 20', a second housing member 408 coupled to the tool carrier 32' on the other of the sections 24A', 24B', and an arm 412 rotatably coupled at a first end 416 thereof to the first housing member 404.

[0083] The first housing member 404 couples to the tool carrier 32' with a plurality of fasteners 420. The first housing member 404 of one of the second coupling members 400 is coupled to the tool carrier 32' included in section 24B' of the apparatus 20' and the first housing member 404 of the other of the second coupling members 400 is coupled to the tool carrier 32' included in section 24A' of the apparatus 20'. The orientation of the first housing member 404 may be adjusted by loosening the fasteners 420, rotating or otherwise moving the first housing member 404, then tightening the fasteners 420 to secure the first housing member 404 to the tool carrier 32'. The first housing member 404 includes a mating surface 424 that is substantially flat and defines a recess 428 allowing rotation of the arm 412 and controlling the extent to which the arm 412 can rotate toward the uncoupled condition. The first housing member 404 also includes a projection 432 extending beyond the flat mating surface 424 of the first housing member 404 and beyond the mating surface 100' of the respective end 96' of the tool carrier 32'. The projection 432 includes angled surfaces 436 to provide a chamfer or bevel 440 on the projection 432.

[0084] The second housing member 408 couples to the tool carrier 32' with a plurality of fasteners 444. The second housing member 408 of one of the second coupling members 400 is coupled to the tool carrier 32' included in section 24A' of the apparatus 20' and the second housing member 408 of the other of the second coupling members 400 is coupled to the tool carrier 32' included in section 24B' of the apparatus 20'. The second housing member 408 includes a mating surface 448 that is substantially flat and defines a recess 452 therein allowing rotation of the arm 412 and controlling the extent to which the arm 412 can rotate toward a coupled condition. A seat 456 is defined in the second housing member 408 for receiving an engagement member 460 of the arm 412 and assists with maintaining the arm 412 in the coupled condition. The seat 456 is generally flat and is disposed on both sides of the recess 452. The second housing member 408 also defines a receptacle 464 therein for receiving the projection 432 of the first housing member 404.

[0085] With further reference to Figs. 12-17, the arm 412 is rotatably coupled at one end to a shaft 468, which is coupled to the first housing member 404. The arm 412 includes an aperture 472 there through for receiving the shaft 468. The arm 412 also includes an opposing threaded end 476 and the engagement member 460 is threadably movable along the threaded end 476.

[0086] With continued reference to Figs. 12-17, the shaft 468 extends along a longitudinal axis 489 that is oriented transversely or radially to a central rotational axis 22' of the apparatus 20'. The central rotational axis 22' of the apparatus 20' may also extend through a longitudinal center of a pipe P' when the apparatus 20' is coupled to the pipe P'. In other words, the longitudinal axis 489 is generally parallel to a surface 224' of the tool carrier 32'. The arm 412 rotates about the axis 489 between the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition. The arm 412 remains within the profile of the apparatus 20' defined by an interior diameter 492 of the apparatus 20' and an exterior diameter 496 of the apparatus 20' when the arm 412 is in both the coupled condition and the uncoupled condition.

[0087] The second coupling members 400 perform a variety of functions. First, the second coupling members 400 assist with guiding the two sections 24A', 24B' into proper alignment with each other in preparation of coupling the two sections 24 A', 24B' together. Second, the second coupling members 400 provide a user with a manner of quickly and easily retaining the sections 24A', 24B' together around a pipe P prior to complete and final coupling of the two sections 24A', 24B' by quickly flipping the arms 412 to the coupled condition. Third, the second coupling members 400, along with the first coupling members 300, assist with finally and completely coupling the two sections 24A', 24B' of the apparatus 20' together. Fourth, with the use of the second coupling members 400, the mating surfaces 100' of the ends 96' of the tool carrier 32' of sections 24A', 24B' do not need to be machined or manufactured to include such a high degree of tolerance. The second coupling members 400 are adapted to achieve other functions not explicitly identified herein, but apparent to those having ordinary skill in the art, and all of such functions are intended to be within the spirit and scope of the present disclosure.

[0088] Referring now to Fig. 14, the two sections 24A', 24B' of the apparatus 20' are shown in an uncoupled or disassembled condition. To assemble the two sections 24A', 24B', the ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B' are generally aligned and moved toward one another. With additional reference to Figs. 15 and 16, as the ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B' draw close together, the projections 432 of the first housing members 404 begin to insert into the receptacles 464 of the second housing members 408. The chamfers 440 and angled surfaces 436 of the projections 432, along with the complementary shape of the receptacles 464, accommodate situations where the two sections 24A, 24B are not exactly properly aligned. More particularly, the projections 432 and receptacles 464 engage each other and guide the two sections 24A', 24B' into the ultimate proper alignment as the two sections 24A', 24B' move together. The chamfers 440 and angled surfaces 436 of the projections 432 and the shape of the receptacles 464 generally provide a ramp engagement such that any portion of the projections 432 can engage any portion of the receptacles 464 and the projections 432 will ride along the interiors of the receptacles 464 until the projections 432 are guided into and properly seated within the receptacles 464 as illustrated in Figs. 12, 13 and 17.

[0089] Once the first and second housing members 404, 408 are adequately brought together, the arm 412 may be swung from the uncoupled condition illustrated in Figs. 14-16 to the coupled condition shown in Figs. 12, 13 and 17. The engagement member 460 may then be threaded toward and into the seat 456 of the second housing member 408. The engagement member 460 is threaded until an adequate amount of tightening has been achieved. The first coupling members 300 may also be tightened to assist with securing the two sections 24A', 24B' together.

[0090] When the second coupling members 400 and the two sections 24A', 24B' are in the completely coupled condition (see Figs. 12, 13 and 17), the projection 432 is positioned in and engages the receptacle 464, a flat rear surface 480 of the projection 432 engages the surface 224' of the tool carrier 32', and an opposing flat front surface 484 of the projection 432 engages an interior surface 488 of the receptacle 464. Thus, the second housing member 408 has portions thereof on multiple sides (e.g., top, front, rear, etc.) of the projection 432 of the first housing member 404, thereby inhibiting movement of the first and second housing members 404, 408 relative to each other in multiple directions (e.g., forward, rearward, upward, etc.).

[0091] When coupling the two sections 24A', 24B' of the apparatus 20' together, some portions of the two sections 24A', 24B' near the ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B' need to abut and mate to facilitate a proper coupling of the two sections 24A', 24B'. In conventional split frame pipe machining apparatuses, mating surfaces at the ends of the tool carrier are the surfaces that must abut and mate in an appropriate manner in order to adequately couple the two sections together. If the mating surfaces of the tool carrier ends were not properly toleranced or if the dowel pins were not appropriately inserted into the associated holes (conventional manner of aligning ends of sections - see Background), the two sections could not be properly coupled. Ensuring that the mating surfaces of the tool carrier ends of the two sections were properly machined to an appropriate degree of tolerance or ensuring the dowel pins and associated holes were adequately aligned and inserted can be a complicated, time consuming, and costly process, and even after taking all of these necessary steps still may not result in proper coupling of the ends of the sections.

[0092] In one example, the apparatus 20' illustrated and described herein relies on the mating surfaces 424, 448 of the first and second housing members 404, 408 to abut and mate, rather than the mating surfaces 100' of the tool carrier ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B', to facilitate a proper coupling of the two sections 24 A', 24B'. The process for ensuring proper tolerancing of the mating surfaces 424, 448 of the first and second housing members 404, 408 can be easier, quicker, and less costly. In one example, the orientation of the first housing member 404 may be adjusted relative to the fixed second housing member 408 to ensure proper mating of the mating surfaces 424, 448. By utilizing the mating surfaces 424, 448 of the first and second housing members 404, 408, the mating surfaces 100' of the tool carrier ends 96' of the two sections 24A', 24B' do not need to be toleranced to such a high degree, thereby potentially saving time, effort, and money when manufacturing the apparatus 20'.

[0093] The Abstract of the disclosure is provided to allow the reader to quickly ascertain the nature of the technical disclosure. It is submitted with the understanding that it will not be used to interpret or limit the scope or meaning of the claims. In addition, in the foregoing Detailed Description, it can be seen that various features are grouped together in various embodiments for the purpose of streamlining the disclosure. This method of disclosure is not to be interpreted as reflecting an intention that the claimed embodiments require more features than are expressly recited in each claim. Rather, as the following claims reflect, inventive subject matter lies in less than all features of a single disclosed embodiment. Thus, the following claims are hereby incorporated into the Detailed Description, with each claim standing on its own as a separately claimed subject matter.

[0094] While various embodiments of the disclosure have been described, it will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art that other embodiments and implementations are possible within the scope of the disclosure. Accordingly, the disclosure is not to be restricted except in light of the attached claims and their equivalents.