|1.||A spring winding tool including: opposed body parts which are rotatable with respect to one another about a winding axis; inner and outer spring holding means with which respective inner and outer end portions of a spiral spring may be located on respective said body parts; control means for preventing relative rotation between said opposed body parts in a selected direction, and a spring holding chamber into which a spiral spring may be coiled with its inner and outer ends held by said spring holding means.|
|2.||A spring winding tool according to claim 1, wherein said opposed body parts are releasable from one another to enable a coiled spring to be released from said spring winding tool.|
|3.||A spring winding tool according to claim 2, wherein said spring holding chamber is an open annular chamber formed between said opposed body parts.|
|4.||A spring winding tool according to claim 2 or claim 3, wherein said chamber is adapted to accommodate a releasable cartridge or transfer member into which a serial spring may be wound.|
|5.||A spring winding tool according to claim 4, wherein said spring holding chamber is adapted to accommodate a number of different size cartridges.|
|6.||A spring winding tool according to claim 4 or claim 5, wherein said cartridge includes an annular housing having retaining means at one end thereof against which an end wall may be located and said end wall being axially moveable through the annular housing away from said retaining means.|
|7.||A spring winding tool according to any one of claims 4 to 6, wherein said cartridge is adapted to engage non rotatably with one said body part and provide said outer spring holding means.|
|8.||A spring winding tool according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein said control means is a ratchet and pawl mechanism associated with the inner holding means.|
|9.||A spring winding tool according to claim 8, wherein said ratchet and pawl mechanism includes a pair of oppositely disposed ratchet wheels and associated pawls each adapted for preventing relative rotation of the opposed body parts in respective opposite directions and selecting means being provided for selectively engaging either one said pawl with its associated ratchet wheel.|
|10.||A spring winding tool according to claim 8 or claim 9, wherein each said pawl is mounted so as to project through a wall of the body part in which it is mounted.|
|11.||A spring winding tool according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein said opposed body parts are in the form of a base housing which contains said control means and a cover detachably secured thereto.|
|12.||A spring winding tool according to claim 11,wherein said control means controls rotation of a stub axle which projects from the base and forms said inner spring holding means and said cover is engageable nonrotatably with the stub axle and in spaced relationship with the base.|
|13.||A spring winding tool according to claim 12, wherein said cover is provided with releasable attachment means for securing it to said stub axle.|
|14.||A spring winding tool according to any one of claims 11 to 13, wherein said base and said cover are in the form of hand wheels.|
|15.||A spring support for supporting coiled spiral springs, the spring support including an annular housing having retaining means at one end thereof against which an end wall may be located and said end wall being axially moveable through the annular housing away from said retaining means.|
|16.||A spring support according to claim 15, wherein said annular housing is axially recessed to permit an unwound portion of a spiral spring to pass into the housing.|
|17.||A spring winding tool substantially as hereinbefore described with reference to the accompanying drawings.|
The invention relates to a spring winding tool. In particular, the invention relates to a tool for winding or coiling spiral springs. Spiral springs are used in many manual starter mechanisms for a small internal combustion engines, in timepieces and in other clockwork mechanisms. During their assembly, either at the manufacturing stage or during repair of a spring mechanism, such spiral springs have to be coiled or wound to a relatively tightly coiled attitude for placement into a mechanism.
In many instances such spiral springs are coiled or wound by hand and then placed into the mechanism. This can be a particularly dangerous and difficult practice since there is a tendency for the spiral spring, if not correctly placed into the mechanism to violently unwind and possibly eject from the mechanism. In addition, if the coiled spring is not held tightly, replacing the spring becomes a difficult task because the tendency of the spring to unwind causes the overall diameter of the spring to increase to a size which will not fit the mechanism. Alternatively if the spring is not wound tightly it may, not function correctly.
In an attempt to provide a spring winding mechanism the subject of U.S. patent specification NO. 3648716 was proposed. That tool consisted of an outer cylindrical sleeve having an inner cylinder projecting from one end thereof. The outer cylinder was provided with a radial extension about which one end of the spiral spring located and the other end of the spiral spring was positioned in a slot in the inner cylinder. An operating crank projected outwardly form the tool and to use the tool, it was positioned with the spiral spring extending around the exposed end of the inner cylinder with one end of the spring located in the slot on that
cylinder and the other end of the spring held by the radial extension. The tool was then placed against a flat support surface and the crank rotated whilst the user held the outer cylinder. The rotation of the crank caused the inner cylinder to rotate to thereby coil the spring. The upper end of the outer cylinder was provided with castellations relative to a respective one of which a cross member projecting outwardly from the crank could be caused to locate once the coiling operation was completed thereby lock the inner cylinder against rotation. If however, the user released the crank prior to locking the crank against rotation relative to the castellations, there was a tendency for the springs to uncoil. In addition,the tool needed to be placed against a flat surface and in some environments a suitable working surface was not available. If the tool was not correctly placed against a flat working surface there was a tendency for the spring to become dislodged from the tool.
Another earlier proposal is disclosed in U.S. patent specification No. 4183268. In that U.S. specification there is disclosed a device useful in replacing springs in equipment such as chain saws and the like. The device consisted of an upstanding cylinder about which was located a disc having a plurality of circumferentially spaced notches. A lower end of the cylinder was provided with a slot relative to which the inner end of the spring could locate.
To use this particular device, the spring was positioned extending around the lower end of the cylinder with the inner end of the spring located in the slot on that cylinder. The tool, with the spring located in this way was then placed against a flat surface and the disc moved against the spring to capture the spring between it and the surface. When in this position, the user's fingers located in the
circumferentially spaced recesses and by rotating the disc and the cylinder the spring could then be wound up. Unwinding of the spring was prevented by the user's fingers. Once the spring was sufficiently coiled the user would then need to hold the spring and insert the spring into the starting mechanism.
With such an arrangement, once again a flat working surface was necessary. There was no means provided to prevent unwanted uncoiling of the spring other than the pressure applied by the user's fingers and this is undesirable.
This invention aims to alleviate the abovementioned disadvantages and to provide a spring winding tool which will be reliable and efficient in use and effective in operation. Other objects and advantages of this invention will hereinafter become apparent.
With the foregoing and other objects in view, this invention in one aspect resides broadly in a spring winding tool including:- opposed body parts which are rotatable with respect to one another about a' winding axis; inner and outer spring holding means with which respective inner and outer end portions of a spiral spring may be located on respective said body parts; control means for preventing relative rotation between said opposed body parts in a selected direction, and a spring holding chamber into which a spiral spring may be coiled with its inner and outer ends held by said spring holding means. In a preferred embodiment, the opposed body parts are releasable from one another to enable the coiled spring to be released from the spring winding tool. However, if desired the body parts could be formed with peripheral engagement
means to enable the coiled spring to be axially withdrawn from one said body part. The coiled spring may be released from the spring winding tool after being clamped, tied or otherwise held in its coiled attitude. However it is preferred that the spring holding chamber, which may be an internal chamber or, in the instance where the body parts are separable, a open annular chamber, be adapted to accommodate a releasable cartridge or transfer member into which a serial spring may be wound. The spring holding chamber may be adapted to accommodate a number of different size cartridges and preferably the or each cartridge is in the form of a slotted ring provided with a moveable end wall which may slide axially through the slotted ring to urge a spring therein from the ring. The cartridges may be adapted to engage non-rotatably with one said body part and provide the outer spring holding means. However the outer spring holding means could be formed integrally or releasably with one body part if desired.
The control means may be supported on either body part. The control means may be a plurality of balls contained within tapered recesses formed between the opposed body parts such that the balls jam in the tapered recesses and prevent relative rotation about said winding axis in one direction and which release from the recesses and permit relative rotation of the body parts in the opposite direction.
Alternatively the control means may be a brake, clutch, or a ratchet and pawl mechanism associated with the holding means. A typical ratchet and pawl mechanism may include a single ratchet wheel and pawl for preventing relative rotation of the body parts in one direction, or it may comprise a pair of oppositely disposed ratchet wheels and pawls each adapted for preventing relative rotation of the opposed body parts in respective opposite directions and
selecting means being provided for selectively engaging either one said pawl with its associated ratchet wheel. Each pawl may be mounted so as to project through a wall of the body part in which it is mounted. The selecting means may include override means for holding one or each pawl from engagement with their respective ratchet wheel.
In a preferred embodiment of the invention the opposed body parts are in the form of a base housing which contains the control means and a cover. The control means controls rotation of a stub axle which projects from the base and forms the inner spring holding means and the cover is engageable non-rotatably with the stub axle and in spaced relationship with the base such that an open annular spring holding chamber is formed therebetween. Preferably the cover is provided with releasable attachment means for securing it to the stub axle and both the base and the cover are in the form of hand wheels.
The cartridge comprising the slotted ring and axially displaceable end wall will be found to be very useful for installing coiled springs into mechanisms and for storing coiled springs and thus in another aspect, this invention resides broadly in spring support for supporting coiled spiral springs, the spring support including an annular housing having retaining means at one end thereof against which an end wall may be located and said end wall being axially moveable through the annular housing away from said retaining means. The annular housing may be slotted or axially recessed if desired to permit an unwound portion of a spiral spring therewithin to pass through the housing. In order that this invention may be more readily understood and put into practical effect, reference will now be made to the accompanying drawings which illustrate a typical embodiment of the invention, wherein:-
FIGS. 1 and 2 are opposed perspective views of a tool according to a preferred embodiment of the invention; FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the tool according illustrated in FIG. 1 and shown with a spring retaining cartridge in place;
FIG. 4 is en exploded view of the tool; FIG. 5 illustrates the ratchet assembly; FIG. 6 is an inside plan view of the top body part, and FIGS. 7 and 8 illustrate the capture of a spring in the spring cartridge.
Referring to the drawings and to FIG. 4 in particular, it will be seen that the spring rewinding tool 20 has opposed detachable body parts 21 and 22 between which a spring 23 may be mounted and wound into a removable cartridge or ring 24. The lower housing part or base 22 has a closure plate 25 secured thereto by fixing screws 26 as illustrated.
The base wall 30 of the base 22 is provided with an inwardly extending annular flange 31 disposed coaxially with a complementary annular bore 32 formed in the closure plate 25. A ratchet wheel hub 33 is located between the flange 31 and the bore 32 whereby the ratchet wheel assembly 34 is received and held for rotation in the base 22. Diametrically opposed annular flange parts 35 formed integrally with the hub 33 extend outwardly beyond the closure plate 25 and form a slotted stub-axle about which the inner end of a spiral spring to be coiled may be hooked.
The hub 33 is formed with projections 36 which engage within the bore of a ratchet wheel 37 to secure it releasably thereto whereby various hubs 33 may be connected thereto to suit different size springs. The ratchet wheel 37 is formed with opposed sets of ratchet teeth 38 and 39 and the base 22 is formed with opposed pawl mounting posts 40 and 41 about which opposed pawls 42 and 43 are mounted for selective
engagement with the respective ratchet teeth 38 and 39. The pawls 42 and 43 are biassed by springs 46 and 47 towards their engaged positions.
As illustrated in Fig 5, each pawl 42 and 43 has an extension 50 which protrudes through apertures 51 in the side wall 52 whereby the pawls may be finger actuated for release from the teeth 38 and 39. The ends of the extensions are slotted at 53 to provide respective lost motion connections with respective actuating members 54 and 55 connected to a common locking knob 56 supported in an arcuate slot 57 formed in the base wall 58. The knob 56 may be pushed to either extremity in the slot 57 to pivot the opposite pawl 42,43 away from the respective set of teeth 38 or 39 while leaving the other pawl free to pivot between its engaged and disengaged positions.
Thus the ratchet wheel 37 may be controlled for rotation in either direction by sliding the knob 56 to either end of the slot 57 to hold one pawl 41 or 42 free from the ratchet wheel 37 allowing the opposite pawl to be spring urged into engagement with the ratchet wheel 37. The engaged pawl may be released at any time from the ratchet wheel 37 to permit the latter to free wheel by depressing the extension portion 50 into the interior of the housing 22 through the slot 51. The base wall 58 and the closure plate 25 are also provided with in-line bearing apertures 60 and 61 for reciprocally supporting a slotted pin 62 which may be utilised as the outer holding means for the outer end of a spiral spring such as the spring 23 illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8. As illustrated in Fig 3, the slotted pin 62 is biassed by spring 63 to a position at which its slotted end 64 projects from the closure plate 25. The opposite end of the pin 62 is fitted with a grab ring 65 whereby the pin 62 may
be retracted. Furthermore the ring 65 may be pivoted to a position alongside the pin 62 so that when the pin 62 is retracted, the ring may be engaged behind an external base shoulder 66 to hold the pin 62 in the retracted position. The closure plate 25 has a plurality of concentric grooves 70 provided with respective depressions 71 of a greater depth at spaced positions therearound. Selected castellated and slotted transfer rings 24 locate in respective grooves with the castellations 73 located in depressions 71 to prevent rotation of the engaged ring 24 relative to the closure plate 25. The ring 72 is slotted at 74 to provide an opening through which the unwound portion of a spiral spring placed or coiled within the ring may project. Opening 74 is strengthened by rib 75. The end walls 76 between which the opening 74 extends provide alternate outer holding means for a spring to be wound.
The upper housing portion or cover 21 is generally similar in external configuration to the base 22. However it has a fixed central hub 80 within which the flange parts 35 " locate so that the ratchet wheel assembly 34 may be rotated by rotation of the cover 21 relative to the base 22. The hub 80 has opposed internal tapered cutouts 82 to receive flange parts 35 of various diameters. A cover plate 83 is screwed to the inner side of the cover and a retaining bolt 84 passes through a bore 85 in the hub 80 and engages threadedly within the threaded hub 33 of the ratchet wheel assembly 34 to secure the base 22 adjustably to the cover 21.
Each transfer member or ring 24 is provided with three spaced locating lugs 86 on its inner surface and is provided with a removable end wall 87 which locates behind said lugs 86. The end wall 87 is provided with corresponding cutouts 88 which may be aligned with the lugs 86 to permit the cover 87 to pass thereacross. The end wall 87 is also provided
with a pair of axial projections 89 which may be located at opposite sides of a lug to secure the cover against rotation in the ring 24.
This arrangement enables the ring 24, without the cover 87 attached, and thus providing good visibility of the parts, to be located about the inner part of a spring to be coiled and engaged and located in the respective groove 70 with the cutout 74 extending about the unwound spring. The cover 87 is subsequently secured to the ring 24 to form the cartridge into which the spring may be wound.
For this purpose the inner end 90 of the spring is located about the appropriate flange part 35 and the cover is secured to the base and rotated to wind the spring through the cutout 74 into the ring 24. When the spring is wound tightly with the outer end 91 engaged about the respective end wall 76, the ratchet mechanism may be released to permit the spring to uncoil against the inner surface of the ring 24 and be ready for removal. The cartridge 24 with the coiled spring therewithin may be removed after the cover 21 has been released from the base 22.
Installation of the spring into a rewinding mechanism or the like is simplified as the ring may be held in the cartridge 24 adjacent its installed position and then pushed therefrom to its operative position by forcing the cover 87 through the ring 24.
Of course the rewinding tool 20 can be used without a cartridge or ring and in that case the outer end of the spring is secured to the slotted end of the pin 62 to permit the spring to be coiled. Suitable holding means may be temporarily engaged about the coiled spring to permit it to be transferred to a mechanism.
Furthermore for rewinding large springs, the cover 21 could be provided with an inbuilt spring or motor operated
rewinding device for automatically rotating the ratchet assembly to which the inner end of a spring is engaged. For this purpose the cover could be hingedly secured to the base 22 for movement between its operative and unloading positions. Alternatively the rewinding mechanism could be supported in the base 22 and the cartridge could lock onto the base 22 for rewinding operations.
It will of course be realised that the above has been given only by way of illustrative example of the invention and that all such modifications and variations thereto as would be apparent to persons skilled in the art are deemed to fall within the broad scope and ambit of the invention as is defined in the appended claims.