Login| Sign Up| Help| Contact|

Patent Searching and Data


Title:
IMPROVED DISPENSERS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2001/098590
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Dispenser apparatus (33) for a roll of geotextile, which apparatus can be attached to a tractor's (conventional) three-point mounting, this apparatus comprising a long telescopic beam (34), or beam framework, having centrally thereof a three-point mounting (39) by which it can be attached behind a tractor (32) clear of the ground. The beam (34) has end plates (35) between which is a support rod (26) carrying a roll (27) of liner material. The present invention proposes that there be end beams (42) that can be moved in and out by a hydraulic ram (47, 48, 402) mounted between the main beam (41) and the end plates (43) to which the end beams (42) are secured, and that the bottom of each end plate (42) be provided with an inwardly-directed spigot (404, 405, 406) which can be directed into the hole through the liner roll (27) as the rams (47, 48, 402) draw back the end plates (42) to the correct spacing, and so provide the required roll support.

Inventors:
Gent, Keith Andrew (Edgefield Hall Farm Edgefield Melton Constable Norfolk NR24 2RS, GB)
Application Number:
PCT/GB2001/002578
Publication Date:
December 27, 2001
Filing Date:
June 12, 2001
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
Gent, Keith Andrew (Edgefield Hall Farm Edgefield Melton Constable Norfolk NR24 2RS, GB)
International Classes:
A01G13/02; B65H16/06; E01C23/03; E02D31/00; (IPC1-7): E01C23/03
Foreign References:
GB2337039A
US4793731A
FR2278245A1
US4705229A
GB2337039A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Dunnett, Julie Elizabeth (Barker Brettell St. John's Innovation Centre Cowley Road Cambridge CB 4 0WS, GB)
Download PDF:
Claims:
Claims
1. A tractormountable dispenser for a roll of material such as a geosynthetic clay liner or a geotextile fabric, the dispenser comprising : an elongate beam, or framework of beams, having roughly centrally thereof a threepoint mounting by which the beam or framework can be attached to the tractor so as to extend laterally therebehind ; the beam carrying at either end a plate having inwardlydirected rollmounting spigot means such that in use the roll of material may be borne thereon and between the end plates ; the beam being associated with positioning control means that can in operation be used to effect adjustment of the lateral angle of the lower linkages of the tractor's threepoint mounting, and thus to move the roll to one side or the other to modify where, in use, the liner is laid; and wherein each individual beam making up the length of the framework is telescopic, and driven by extension/ retraction means by which the end plates can in operation be spaced apart sufficiently far that the spigot means can be inserted into the ends of the rolls, and the plates then retracted to position the spigot means within the roll so as to support the roll.
2. A dispenser as claimed in Claim 1 which is a box framework of beams wherein the end plates form two opposed (side) faces of the box and the top surface of the box is defined by a pair of spaced parallel beams suitably elongated to provide the length appropriate for the chosen roll.
3. A dispenser as claimed in either of the preceding Claims, wherein to make the length of the beam adjustable so that it can more easily and efficiently cater for the several different rolls, itor each individual beam making up the length of the framework is"telescopic", and comprises a relatively long hollow, tubular main beam having slidably mounted therewithin at each end relatively short end beam portions that can be moved in or out of the main beam, and then fixed in place, so as to alter the overall length of the whole beam.
4. A dispenser as claimed in any of the preceding Claims, wherein each telescopic beamdriving extension/ retraction means is a hydraulicallyoperated (pistonin cylinder) ram, and the ram body is mounted on the main beam while the ram rod extending from the piston in the body is mounted to the end plate to which the relevant end beam (s) is attached.
5. A dispenser as claimed in Claim 4, wherein each ram system uses a short throw ram, and can be moved bodily along the main beam, from one mounting point to another, so as to accommodate widely different roll widths.
6. A dispenser as claimed in any of the preceding Claims, wherein each endplateborne spigot is effectively in two parts, an inner rod mounted to the end plate and carrying on bearings therearound an outer sleeve that fits into the hollow space within the roll.
7. A dispenser as claimed in any of the preceding Claims, wherein the threepoint mounting centrally of the beam in its length direction is within 30cm (one foot) to either side of the actual centre.
8. A dispenser as claimed in any of the preceding Claims, wherein the positioning control means that can in operation be used to effect adjustment of the lateral angle of the lower linkages of the tractor's threepoint mounting, and thus to move the roll to one side or the other to modify where, in use, the liner is laid, includes as a driver device a hydraulic ram taking the place of one of the movementrestriction chains usually employed with the threepoint mounting's arms, which ram is associated with a control arrangement in the form of a conventional leveroperated hydraulic switch operatively connected to the ram and mounted at the rear and side of the beam.
9. A dispenser as claimed in any of the preceding Claims, which includes metering means whereby there may be determined what length of material has been dispensed from the roll, and thus how much is left.
10. A dispenser as claimed in any of the preceding Claims which is equipped to handle two or more rolls at once, each roll being similarly mounted between the end plates.
11. A dispenser as claimed in any of the preceding Claims, which includes mounted thereon just ahead of the roll being laid, a roller that will take out or level any indentations formed in the ground formation as the roll is dispensed.
12. A dispenser as claimed in any of the preceding Claims and substantially as described hereinbefore.
Description:
Improved dispensers This invention is concerned with improved dispensers, and relates in particular to tractor-drawn dispensers suitable for use with rolls of sheet material such as that GCL sheeting used in the lining or capping of tips, reservoirs, contaminated land and the like.

In my British Patent Specification No : 2, 337, 039 (P1543Sub) there is discussed the problem of the disposal of rubbish (trash, garbage), and other waste materials, and how it is presently the practice to transport all rubbish to, and dump it at, some central site where there is a dump-or"tip"-in the form of a pit specially dug and designated for this purpose. In accordance with the regulations, every such pit must be so lined that nothing can seep down into the underlying ground, and so pollute the surroundings, and once full, and before earth can be laid on top and the whole landscaped, it is necessary to seal off the top.

A modern pit can vary in size from 25, 000sq. m (2.5 hectares, or about 6.25 acre) for a small pit up to 80,000sq. m (8ha, or about 20 acre) and beyond for a larger one-the latter are usually made up of a number of smaller pits, or"cells". Typically, such a pit has first a compacted surface on top of which is a compacted sand layer with a flat and smooth surface, and on top of the sand there must be laid an impervious lining layer- such as that known as a geosynthetic clay liner, or GCL.

It may also be necessary to employ, over or under this, a thick, durable plastic sheet layer, the sheeting being of the type known as a geotextile. Both clay liners and geotextiles come in the form of rolls each of which is a ribbon-like sheet of material (known, when deployed, as a"panel") from 3.5-5m (12-16. 5ft) wide, from 40-45m (135-150ft) long, and about 100-llOmm (0.4-0.45in) thick. They can weigh, depending on the material, anywhere from 1000-1450kg (about 2,200-3,2001b, or about a ton to a ton and a half). These are laid down with an overlap-normally of around 15-22. 5mm (6-9in)-and getting the overlap right so that it is large enough to form a satisfactory seal but not so large as to waste significant amounts of material can save quite a lot of money.

In the past this laying has commonly been accomplished by the simple but effective means of threading the roll onto a support rod, attaching the rod by chains at each end to a rigid beam, mounting the beam (again with chains) to the bucket of a JCB-or a tracked 360 excavator, which is preferred if the ground is not to be churned up-and then carrying the roll along, letting the sheet liner pay out. Unfortunately this method, though uncomplicated, is not especially accurate-and the earlier invention the subject of my aforementioned Specification provides a better form of dispenser apparatus that can be"rigidly"attached to a tractor's (conventional) three-point mounting-a single, upper, pivot mounting that can be raised or lowered by the tractor's normal hydraulic system so as similarly to raise or lower whatever the mounting is carrying, and a pair of laterally-separated lower "floating"rigid link arms pivotally attached at their inboard ends to the tractor for slight sideways movement. More specifically, my earlier invention proposes a long beam, or framework of beams, having roughly centrally thereof a three-point mounting by which it can be attached behind a tractor clear of the ground, the beam having normally-disposed end plates between which there may be borne a support rod carrying a roll of liner material. The beam is associated with positioning control means that can be used to adjust the lateral angle of the lower three-point mounting linkages, and so move the roll to either side to modify where the liner is laid.

Because rolls come in different widths, depending on their precise purpose and cost, it is desirable to arrange for the width of the dispenser-the length of the beam-to be adjustable so that it can more easily and efficiently cater for the several different rolls.

To this end the beam-or each individual beam making up the length of the framework-is"telescopic", it comprising a hollow, tubular main beam having slidably mounted therewithin at each end small (short) end beam portions that can be moved in or out of the main beam, and then fixed in place, so as to alter the overall length of the whole beam. In my earlier form of dispenser the outer, main, beam has at each end a sequence of holes extending along the beam, and each end beam portion has at its inboard end (the end that fits within the main beam) a single matching hole, so that each end beam portion once positioned can conveniently be fixed in place by a securing pin inserted through the relevant aligned holes. This method of changing the effective length of the beam, while perfectly adequate, is rather time-consuming, and it is one feature of the present invention that the end beams are moved in and out by a hydraulic ram mounted between the main beam and the end plates to which the end beams are secured.

This use of ram-driven end beams has a surprising consequence, which is that if the bottom of each end plate be provided with an inwardly-directed spigot (so that the two spigots point towards each other) then it is no longer necessary to employ a long support rod threaded through the roll. Instead, the spacing of the end plates having first been increased (by the ram driving the end beams out) until the roll fits between them (and between the opposed spigots), the spigots can be directed into the hole through the roll as the rams draw back the end plates to the correct spacing, and so provide the required support in place of the rod.

In one aspect, therefore, this invention provides a tractor-mountable dispenser for a roll of material such as a geosynthetic clay liner or a geotextile fabric, the dispenser comprising: an elongate beam, or framework of beams, having roughly centrally thereof a three-point mounting by which it can be attached to the tractor so as to extend laterally therebehind; the beam carrying at either end a plate having inwardly-directed roll-mounting spigot means such that in use the roll of material may be borne thereon and between the end plates ; the beam being associated with positioning control means that can in operation be used to effect adjustment of the lateral angle of the lower linkages of the tractor's three-point mounting, and thus to move the roll to one side or the other to modify where, in use, the liner is laid ; and wherein each individual beam making up the length of the framework is telescopic, and driven by powered extension/retraction means by which the end plates can in operation be spaced apart sufficiently far that the spigot means can be inserted into the ends of the rolls, and the plates then retracted to position the spigot means within the roll so as to support the roll.

It will be seen that the dispenser of the present invention is basically like that of the earlier invention, save that it has driving means that telescope the main beam, and that spigot means-spigots-on the end plates project into, and so support, the roll.

Although for the most part herein the invention is discussed in relation to the lining or capping of a pit for rubbish, refuse and the like, it may in fact also be of use in the lining or capping of other container-like holes in the ground. For example, modern water reservoirs need to be lined to stop their contents leaking away, and the dispenser of the invention can be used to lay such a lining. Again, in some countries it may be desirable to store crude oil in giant pits, or perhaps to place surface storage tanks in safety pits to contain any leakage, and obviously it is extremely important to ensure that the pits are sufficiently well lined and/or capped to prevent oil seeping into the surroundings.

The invention provides a tractor-mountable dispenser. The tractor employed to carry the dispenser may be of any type-a suitably-shod conventional agricultural tractor or loading shovel, for example, or a tracked crawler of some sort-provided, of course, that it has a suitable three-point mounting. As noted above, a conventional such three-point mounting comprises a single, upper, pivot mounting with an adjustable-length link and a pair of laterally-separated lower rigid link arms pivotally attached at their inboard ends to the tractor both for vertical movement and for slight sideways movement, which lower arms can be raised or lowered by the tractor's normal hydraulic system so as to raise or lower whatever the mounting is carrying. It is normal for the sideways movement to be restricted by a chain on the outside of each lower arm; as is discussed further hereinafter, in the employment of the preferred forms of the dispenser of the invention these chains are removed, one of them being replaced by a hydraulic ram that can be used to drive the arm, and thus the dispenser, from side to side.

Bearing in mind the regulations regarding the smoothness of a tip's underlying surface, one important point about the tractor to note here is that it must be equipped with tyres, or other ground-contacting drive and support means (such as tracks), that do not leave significant marks or indentations in the ground formation surface of the tip. For the most part standard low flotation tyres as are commonly used on tractors on soft, boggy ground, and preferably with a tread not more than about 5mm (0.25in) deep, are perfectly satisfactory.

The invention's dispenser is for dispensing a roll of material such as a geosynthetic clay liner (GCL), a geotextile fabric, or whatever is appropriate to the particular task at hand, and naturally, the roll may be of any suitable size.

The dispenser of the invention is an elongate beam, or beam framework, having a three-point mounting and carrying at either end a plate having inwardly-directed roll-mounting spigot means such that in use the roll of material may be borne thereon and between the end plates. Although the dispenser could have only a single beam-it is quite possible to provide such a beam made of square-section mild steel tube, say, and strong enough to carry the roll and rigid enough to allow satisfactory distribution therefrom-it is much more convenient to construct the dispenser as a framework of beams, and typically as part of a"box" framework wherein the end plates form two opposed (side) faces of the box and the top surface of the box is defined by a pair of spaced parallel beams suitably elongated to provide the length appropriate for the chosen roll and perhaps with one or more bracing cross strut. For use with a roll 4m long and 0.5m diameter (about 13.5ft by 1.75ft) long such a framework might be 4.2m long and 0.75m wide and deep (about 14ft by 2. 5ft by 2.5ft). The individual beams making up the framework are conveniently square-section mild steel tube around 100x200un and 10mm thick (about 4x4in, 0.5in thick), suitable welded to the end plates, which are themselves 10mm (0. 5in) mild steel plate.

Hereinafter, and unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, the term"beam"is used both to mean a single beam and to mean the beam part of a framework.

Because rolls come in different widths, depending on their precise purpose and cost, it is desirable to arrange for the width of the dispenser-the length of the beam-to be adjustable so that it can more easily and efficiently cater for the several different rolls.

To this end the beam-or each individual beam making up the length of the framework-is"telescopic", it comprising a hollow, tubular main beam having slidably mounted therewithin at each end small (short) end beam portions that can be moved in or out of the main beam, and then fixed in place, so as to alter the overall length of the whole beam. Each end plate is then mounted on the outboard end of the end beam (or beams).

The telescopic beam (or beams) making up the length of the framework is driven by powered extension/ retraction means. Each means-and it is preferable to have two such means, one for each end of the main beam, operating independently-could be whatever is suitable -a small electric motor driving a rack-and-pinion system, for example-but it is most conveniently a conventional hydraulically-operated (piston-in-cylinder) ram. The means is mounted between the main beam and the end plate; with a piston-in-cylinder ram, the ram body is mounted on the main beam while the ram rod extending from the piston in the body is mounted to the end plate to which the relevant end beam (s) is attached. Such a hydraulic system can be driven from the tractor's hydraulics.

Although a single ram system could be used (at each end) with a throw long enough to allow a roll of almost any width-that is to say, the length of the axis of the roll-to be fitted to the dispenser, it is convenient, and much less expensive, to use a short throw ram and to move it bodily along the main beam, from one mounting point to another, so as to accommodate widely different roll widths.

The telescoping driving means needs a control arrangement-and preferably such an arrangement as can be utilised by an Operator standing just behind and to one side of the dispenser, and gauging by eye the accuracy with-which spigots are positioned to enter the roll. Advantageously, this control arrangement is a conventional lever-operated switch-a hydraulic switch, say-operatively connected to the driver and mounted at the rear and side of the beam-and one on each side is obviously desirable, so that the Operator may be at first one side and then the other to"guide"each spigot into the roll.

Each end plate carries an inwardly-directed roll-mounting spigot means (spigots) such that in use the roll of material may be borne thereon and between the end plates. In operation the main beam is extended until the end plates are spaced apart sufficiently far that the spigots can be inserted into the ends of the rolls, and the plates are then retracted to position the spigots within the roll so as to support the roll. Each spigot may be nothing more than a structurally stiff rod securely mounted on the inner face of the end plate.

Most preferably, however, each spigot is effectively in two parts, an inner rod mounted to the end plate and carrying on bearings therearound an outer sleeve that fits into the hollow space within the roll.

The dispenser of the invention is tractor- mountable, and on the beam there is a three-point mounting-one upper mounting and two spaced lower mounting positioned symmetrically either side of the upper one-by which it can be attached to the tractor so as to extend laterally therebehind. In itself there is nothing particular special about this mounting, which is such as might be found on any agricultural implement, and so it need no further comment here. However, in order to enable the beam to be lifted well clear of the ground for when it is to be loaded with a fresh roll, and for carrying the roll to the place where it is to be laid, it may be desirable to have the bottom mountings set relatively low-that is, somewhat lower than would usually be the case for an agricultural implement to be mounted on a tractor this way.

The three-point mounting is conveniently roughly central of the beam in its length direction, so that the roll it carries is similarly central of the tractor. It might, though, be desirable to offset the mounting, and thus the roll, to one side or another, so the expression "roughly central"can be interpreted quite widely. For example, the mounting might be 30cm (a foot or so) to one side.

The beam in the invention's dispenser has at either end a plate having rod-mounting spigot means such that the roll of material may be borne thereby between the end plates. The beam being telescopic, each plate is actually carried on the relevant smaller end beam portion. The plate-although the term"plate"might imply a solid object, and in fact the plate preferably is a solid plate, it could itself be in the form of a framework-is disposed generally normal to the beam (the exact angle is not especially relevant) and is of such a size and shape, and so positioned relative to the beam, that, with the roll in place between the end plates, the roll is clear of the beam, and free to rotate on or with the spigots as the material is dispensed therefrom.

As noted hereinbefore, it is a particularly advantageous feature of the invention that the beam be associated with positioning control means that can in operation be used to effect adjustment of the lateral angle of the lower linkages of the tractor's three-point mounting, and thus to move the roll to one side or the other to modify where, in use, the liner is laid.

First, there is needed a driver device for effecting this movement, and conveniently such a device is a hydraulic ram taking the place of one of the movement- restriction chains usually employed with the arms, which ram is powered by the tractor's hydraulic system. Then there is needed a control arrangement-and preferably such an arrangement as can be utilised by an Operator walking along just behind and to one side of the dispenser, and gauging by eye the accuracy with which the roll material is being laid. Advantageously, then, this control arrangement is a conventional lever- operated hydraulic switch operatively connected to the ram and mounted at the rear and side of the beam-and one on each side is obviously desirable, so that the Operator may be at whichever side is where there is being formed the overlapping seam of the liner being laid on that previously laid.

Conveniently, the dispenser of the invention is associated with some metering means whereby there may be determined what length of material has been dispensed from the roll, and thus how much is left. Such a meter can be driven directly from the rotation of the roll (or of the outer sleeve of one of the spigots on which the roll is mounted), much like a car or bicycle odometer is driven by rotation of the wheels or drive chain.

As so far described the invention is a dispenser for a single roll of material. There is no reason, however, why the dispenser should not handle two, or more, rolls at once, each roll being similarly mounted between the end plates. Indeed, for some purposes a two-roll dispenser might be ideal-for example, there might be distributed as the bottom layer (from one roll) a liner that is physically very strong but not necessarily impenetrable by water (or some other liquid), and this could, effectively simultaneously, be itself covered (from the second roll) by a layer of a less robust but totally liquid-blocking material-or, of course, vice versa.

As noted above, it is important, when laying a liner in a tip, reservoir or the like, not to mark the smooth surface of the underlying ground formation, and any undesirable marking can be avoided, or at least mitigated, by using a tracked vehicle or low flotation tyres (preferably without tread). However, if despite this the surface is marked, it may be possible to smooth it out immediately prior to laying the liner by the simply expedient of mounting just behind the tractor, or on the dispenser but just ahead of the roll being laid, a roller that will take out or level any indentations.

An embodiment of the invention is now described, though by way of illustration only, with reference to the accompanying diagrammatic Drawings in which: Figure 1 shows a view of a cell-a hole to be filled-of a rubbish tip being lined in the known manner using a loading shovel; Figure 2 shows a perspective view of a tractor equipped to lay a liner using a dispenser in accordance with the earlier invention; Figure 3 shows a perspective view of one end of a dispenser of the earlier invention, and similar to that shown in Figure 3 ; Figure 4 shows a perspective view similar to that of Figure 3 but of one end of a dispenser of the present invention ; Figure 5 shows a top plan view of the dispenser end shown in Figure 4; and Figure 6 shows a top plan view of the whole of the dispenser of the earlier invention, attached to a tractor.

Figure 1 shows a view of a cell of a rubbish tip pit (generally 11) being lined in the known manner with the use of a loading shovel to carry the roll of lining material. It is not to scale-in reality the cell is much larger, and the loading shovel much smaller-but it serves to illustrate how the liner is laid in strips (as 12) pulled out from a roll (13) mounted on the front of a loading shovel (14: the loading shovel is moving backwards, in the direction of arrow A, paying out the strip as it goes, with the driver manoeuvring as he proceeds in order to keep the strip straight and correctly overlapping the previously-laid adjacent strip).

Figure 2 shows a perspective view of a conventional tractor having a rear-mounted three-point implement mounting system and equipped to lay a liner using a dispenser in accordance with the earlier invention.

Fitted with balloon, or low flotation, tyres (31) the tractor (generally 32) carries on its rear mounting a framework dispenser (generally 33) of the invention.

The framework has two square-section main beams (34) extending laterally across the full width of the tractor 32 (and tyres 31) and beyond, and at each end of the beams is a normally-disposed end plate (35) to which the beams 34 are welded. Centrally of each end plate 35, but nearer the bottom (as viewed) edge thereof, is an inverted U-shaped slot (not shown in this Figure) through which passes the rod 26 supporting a roll 27 of liner. The rod 26 is retained in the slot by an apertured end capping plate (36) which is affixed by nuts/bolts (37) to the end plate 35 and through the aperture of which passes the rod 26.

The framework of beams 34 is cross-braced by struts (38), and has three-point mounting struts (39) forming the mounting points by which it is attached to the tractors three-point mounting system.

Figure 3 shows a perspective view of one end of a dispenser of the earlier invention, and similar to but not the same as that shown in Figure 2. In this Figure can clearly be seen the use of hollow square-section telescopic beams-two fore and aft main beams (41) each ending at each end (though only one end is shown in Figures 4 and 5) in a smaller beam portion (42) mounted slidably within the main beam 41. The end plate (43) is welded to the"free"ends of the smaller beam portions 42, and its position relative to the main beams 41-and thus to the similar end plate (not shown) welded at the"free"end of the small beam portions other end of the main beams 41 (not shown)-may be adjusted by sliding the smaller beam portions in, or out (as appropriate) and then locking them in place with the hand pins (44) passing through mating holes (as 45,46) in the main beam 41 and in the small beam portions 42.

Figure 4 shows a perspective view of one end of a dispenser of the present invention, and similar to the earlier invention as shown in Figure 3.

In Figure 4 there are again the hollow square- section telescopic beams-two fore and aft main beams 41 each ending in a smaller beam portion 42 mounted slidably within the main beam 41. Again, the end plate 43 is welded to the"free"ends of the smaller beam portions 42, and its position relative to the main beams 41 may be adjusted by sliding the smaller beam portions in, or out (as appropriate). However, here, rather than using hand pins passing through mating holes in the main beam 41 and in the small beam portions 42, the end beams 42 are driven by a hydraulic ram (47: for reasons of clarity the ram's hydraulic lines are not shown here) the cylinder (48) of which is attached at its rear to a bar (49) passing between two small lugs (401) upstanding from the main beams 41 and the piston rod (402) of which is attached to a similar bar and lug pair (403) mounted on the outside surface of the end plate 43. There are in fact two pairs of lugs, an inner pair 401 and an outer pair (401a). For short rolls the ram's cylinder 48 is mounted, as shown, on the inner pair, but for longer rolls it is moved bodily along and mounted on the outer pair. The ram is controlled by a stick switch (408) mounted on the rear beam 41 near its end (and of course there is a matching switch at the other end). The hydraulic lines for this switch are for clarity not shown here.

In this embodiment the roll 27 is supported not on a rod slotted into a slot in the bottom edge of each end plate, but instead on spigots (generally 404) mounted on and projecting inwardly from near the lower edge of the inner face of the end plates 43. As best seen in Figure 5, each spigot 404 is a sleeve 405 mounted on bearings (not shown) on a central rod (406) the outer end of which is mounted in a support structure (407) on the end plate 43.

In use, a roll of material 27 is mounted by operating the ram 47 to drive the end plates 43 out so that the free ends of the spigots 404 are beyond the ends of the roll, aligning the spigots with the roll's axial hole, and then operating the ram to retract the end plates (using a suitable manually-operated hydraulic switch mounted on the end plates, but for clarity not shown here), the spigots passing into the axial hole as this is done, leaving the roll mounted on, and rotatable with, the spigots.

A top plan view of the whole of the dispenser of the earlier invention, attached to a tractor, is shown in Figure 6.

From Figure 6 can be seen the three-point linkage (61 : one upper, two lower rigid connections) to the tractor's three-point mounting, together with a hydraulic ram (62) mounted between the tractor and one of the link arms 61 and operated by a control stick (63) mounted to the rear and inboard of the right-hand (as viewed) end plate 43. This enables an Operator walking along behind and to the right of the dispenser to "steer"the dispenser, so as to adjust the overlap (64) of the liner (65) being laid on top of the previously-laid liner (66). If the ram pushes out, the dispenser is moved slightly to the right (as viewed); if it pulls in, the adjusting movement is to the left.