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Title:
GRINDER HEAD
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2020/150601
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A grinder head for high pressure mobile cleaning of roadways. The grinder head combines a rotating spinner member having polycrystalline diamond cutting tips which work in combination with ultra-high pressurized fluid for removing roadway stripes and the like matters from a roadway with damaging the underlying surface. The cutting tips having a polycrystalline diamond cutting material and are positioned along an outer rim of the spinner member in either a single or staggered position.

Inventors:
CROCKER JAMES (US)
Application Number:
PCT/US2020/014080
Publication Date:
July 23, 2020
Filing Date:
January 17, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
WATERBLASTING LLC (US)
International Classes:
B08B3/02; B05B1/20; B28D1/18; E01C23/088; E01C23/12
Foreign References:
DE2362395A11975-06-19
US20090242003A12009-10-01
DE202014009368U12016-02-29
NL2010517C22014-09-29
US4614380A1986-09-30
US9908068B22018-03-06
US9180496B22015-11-10
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SLAVIN, Michael, A. (US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

What is claimed is:

Claim 1. A grinder head for removal of surface coatings comprising:

a spindle having a proximal end and a distal end with a centrally disposed fluid conduit extending therebetween, said proximal end of said spindle securable to a hydraulic motor for rotation thereof, said fluid conduit having an inlet fluidly coupled to a high pressure fluid source ;

a spinner member having a centrally disposed hub secured to a distal end of said spindle, said spinner member having a plurality of spaced apart bridges extending outwardly from said hub in a spoke- like format to an outer rim, a lower surface of said spaced apart bridges each having a plurality of apertures fluidly coupled to said spindle fluid conduit;

a spray nozzle attached to each said aperture, each said spray nozzle for dispersing high pressure fluid introduced through said spindle fluid conduit;

a plurality of cutting tips releasably secured to a lower surface of said outer rim, said cutting tips positioned outboard from said spray nozzles with a frontal face secured at a predetermined angle and distance from a roadway for grinding paint strips therefrom;

whereby said cutting tips and said spray nozzles expedite removal of roadway paint strips by a combination of grinding and high pressure fluid.

Claim 2. The grinder head according to Claim 1 wherein each said frontal face of said cutting tip includes a polycrystalline diamond cutting material. Claim 3. The grinder head according to Claim 1 wherein each said cutting tip is carbide coated.

Claim 4. The grinder head according to Claim 1 wherein each said cutting tip is held in position by an adjoining fastener.

Claim 5. The grinder head according to Claim 1 wherein said bridges are fluidly coupled to said spindle fluid conduit and said nozzle apertures by a common conduit positioned internal said spinner member.

Claim 6. The grinder head according to Claim 5 wherein said spinner member has between five and nine spaced apart bridges

Claim 7. The grinder head according to Claim 5 wherein each said bridge contains between five and nine spray nozzles.

Claim 8. The grinder head according to Claim 1 wherein said high pressure fluid is water pressurized between substantially 25,000 and 40,000 pounds per square inch.

Claim 9. The grinder head according to Claim 1 wherein said spray nozzles are threadedly attached to said apertures .

Claim 10. The grinder head according to Claim 1 including a shroud having a top, sides and an open bottom, said top of said shroud being held to said hydraulic motor, said shroud including an exhaust aperture coupled to a vacuum source for collection of surface materials removed from the roadway. Claim 11. The cleaning device of Claim 10 including a plurality of wheels supporting said shroud and positioning said cutting tips a predetermined distance from the roadway surface .

Description:
GRINDER HEAD

FIELD OF INVENTION

The present invention generally relates to surface cleaning systems, and more particularly, to a grinder head having polycrystalline diamond cutters use in combination with ultra-high pressure water, which is particularly well suited for surface stripe removal .

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

There are various types of systems used for removal of debris using water blasting. Typically a system utilizes an engine that powers a pump. The inlet side of the pump is connected to a low pressure water source, such as a tank or a municipal water supply, while the high pressure side of the pump is connected to a high pressure hose and wand for controlling the flow of high pressure water generated by the pump. The high pressure water is directed at a surface to dislodge dirt, paint and the like, and the water is generally allowed to drain into the storm sewer.

Ultra-high pressure washers supplying more than 25,000 P.S.I. are also known. These systems typically include a large diesel engine running a multi-cylinder pump to generate a high volume of water at an ultra-high pressure . The ultra-high pressure water is directed through various types of blast heads suitable for controlling the flow and direction of the ultra-high pressure water. One particular use for ultra-high pressure water devices is the removal of stripes or other markings from road surfaces. When polymers such as paint or plastic are used for roadway marking, the surface of the pavement is penetrated from 1/8 - 3/8 inch; whereby water blasting is the only known method of removing the stripe material from below the surface without damaging or otherwise removing a portion of the roadway surface.

Surface cleaning systems, such as that disclosed in Applicant's U.S. Patent 9,908,068, are capable of water blasting and debris recovery using a mobile vehicle for ease of transport. Such a system includes a liquid reservoir connected to a high pressure fluid pump for directing ultra-high pressure water through a blast head to remove the coatings or markings from a surface. The blast head includes a shroud which surrounds the blasting area to at least partially contain the water and debris dislodged from the surface. A vacuum pump is secured to the shroud, with the vacuum passing through a cyclone type separator, allowing the water and debris to settle to the bottom portion of the cyclone. The tank includes a floating floor and bladder assembly that allows the same space to be utilized for clean as well as dirty water while maintaining separation .

Applicant's U.S. Patent 9,180,496 discloses an ultra high pressure blasting head for a mobile marking removal system that includes a hydraulic motor constructed and arranged for direct connection to a spray bar for controlled rotation thereof. The output shaft of the hydraulic motor is hollow so that the ultra high pressure water can be supplied to the spray bar through the output shaft. The spray head assembly is particularly suited for mobile systems utilized to remove markings and/or coatings from surfaces with high or ultra high pressure liquid. The contents of U.S. Patents 9,908,068 and 9,180,496 are incorporated herein by reference. A problem occurs when using only high pressure water to remove roadway markings if the markings are uneven. In such instances the paint used for the marking may not have been applied evenly, worn evenly, or capable of being removed evenly. Further, the paint surface may have been impacted through years of use, essentially compressing the paint into a hardened surface, which can add time during the removal process when only ultra-high pressure water is being used. For instance, it is the nature of a rotary spinner bar used with Applicant's prior registrations to cause the sides of the paint surface to be cleaned multiple times during forward motion, while the center portion of the paint may be cleaned only once. This can result in stripes repeated across the surface of the paint being cleaned, causing the cleaning operation to be either repeated or slowed accordingly. In addition, in some areas road markings are applied one over the other as they wear, resulting in paint that is extremely thick and slower to blast away with water.

Therefore, there is a need in the art for a combination grinder head and water blasting head that is suitable for applications wherein the grinder head conditions the material to be removed and ultra-high pressure cleaning fluid completes the material removal.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to an environmentally sensitive mobile cleaning system and more specifically to a rotatable grinder head for high or ultra- high pressure mobile cleaning apparatus. The grinder head works in combination with a mobile pressure cleaning apparatus for cleaning surfaces using a plurality of polycrystalline diamond cutting tips that skim a majority of a painted surface or other material to be removed so as to minimize the remaining material to be removed. Optionally the cutting tips of the instant invention are adjusted to remove a majority of the surface paint material in stages, reducing the time needed to remove the remaining paint using pressurized water. The remaining exposed paint or other material is removed by the use of the ultra high pressurized water directed through spray nozzles.

Accordingly, it is an objective of the present invention to provide a combination grinder head and water blaster for a surface cleaning apparatus, the grinder head having a plurality of polycrystalline diamond or carbide tipped cutting tips constructed and arranged to remove hardened material.

It is yet a further objective of the present invention to provide a combination grinder head and water blaster that reduces the time to remove surface materials, such as a roadway paint stripe, by removing a predetermined amount of material, permitting ease of removal of the underlying material by ultra high pressure fluid.

It is another objective of the present invention to provide a grinder head that reduces the amount of ultra high pressure fluid required to remove surface materials.

It is still yet another objective of the present invention to provide a grinder head assembly that includes replaceable spray nozzles and replaceable cutting tips .

Other objectives and advantages of this invention will become apparent from the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein are set forth, by way of illustration and example, certain embodiments of this invention. The drawings constitute a part of this specification, include exemplary embodiments of the present invention, and illustrate various objects and features thereof.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

Figure 1 is a cross sectional perspective view that illustrates one embodiment of the grinder head device; and Figure 2 is a bottom view of the grinder head.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

While the present invention is susceptible of embodiment in various forms, there is shown in the drawings and will hereinafter be described a presently preferred embodiment with the understanding that the present disclosure is to be considered an exemplification of the invention and is not intended to limit the invention to the specific embodiments illustrated.

Referring to the Figures, a grinder head 10 is illustrated depicting a spinner member 12 having a centrally disposed spindle 14 with a conduit 16 extending from an inlet 18 along a proximal end 20 to the spinner member 12 secured to the spindle 14 along a distal end 22. The conduit 16 adjoins a distribution conduit 24 formed from a channel 26 positioned substantially perpendicular to the conduit 16, feeding a plurality of finger channels 28, each ending in a threaded aperture 30. The inlet 18 is coupled to an ultra-high pressure fluid source between substantially 25,000 and 40,000 pounds per square inch. In the preferred embodiment the fluid is water. The ultra- high pressure water enters the spindle 14 at the inlet 18 using a swivel, shown in prior registrations, capable of handling ultra-high pressure fluid. The inlet 18 is coupled to the internal conduit 16 which joins the distribution conduit 24 for distributing the ultra-high pressure fluid though channels 26 formed in each bridge 32. Each bridge 32 is spaced apart from an adjoining bridge in a spoke-like pattern. The bridges 32 extend outwardly from a centrally disposed hub 34 and each bridge is equally spaced apart for proper balance and allow debris to be drawn through the open space between the bridges 32. In a preferred embodiment, there are between five and nine spaced apart bridges 32, each having between five and nine finger conduits 28 with a spray nozzle 40 attached to each threaded aperture at the end of the finger conduits. The number of bridges 32 and finger conduits 28 is dependent upon the diameter of the spinner member.

Each spray nozzle 40 extends a first distance, dl , from a bottom surface 42 of the spinner member 12. The spinner member 12 is rotated by a fluid driven motor, illustrated in U.S. Patent 9,180,496 incorporated herein. The fluid driven motor can be a positive displacement hydraulic motor capable of providing sufficient rotational torque to rotate the spinner member 12. The proximal end 20 of the spindle 14 is either securable directly to the hydraulic motor for rotation thereof. It should also be noted that other means for rotating the spinner may be utilized without departing from the scope of the invention. Such means may include, but should not be limited to, pneumatic motors, cable drives, belt drives, gear drives and the like.

The spinner member 12 is further defined by an outer rim 50 having a mass capable of maintaining inertia during rotation of the cutting tips. The cutting tips 52 are secured to the outer rim 50 with fasteners 54. The fastener 54 defined by a threaded bolt with a lip that engages an edge of the cutting tip 52. The fasteners allow quick release of the cutting tip 52 should servicing of the cutting tip be required. Each cutting tip 52 extends a second distance, d2 , from the bottom surface 42 of the spinner member 12. The first distance, dl, of the spray nozzles 40 are less than the second distance, d2 , of the cutting tips 52. The cutting tips 52 are constructed and arranged to remove a layer of paint, such as a painted stripe on a roadway, whereby the spray nozzles 40 remove remaining paint. The cutting tips 52 are preferably polycrystalline diamond coated or alternatively constructed from tungsten carbide, titanium carbide, tungsten/titanium carbide, or vanadium carbide. Each cutting tip 52 may be mounted the same distance from the centrally disposed hub 34 of the spinner member at an angle that allows ease of material removal. The cutting tips 52 may be placed at various depths allowing stage removal of the material to be removed. Optionally the cutting tips can be staggered as illustrated in Figure 2 when larger diameter spinner members are employed.

The grinder head 10 works in combination with a mobile pressure cleaning apparatus for cleaning surfaces, while minimizing water usage. In the preferred embodiment, a polycrystalline diamond coated cutting tip 52 is positioned to skim a majority of the painted surface, so as to expose the underlying or remaining paint. Further, the polycrystalline diamond cutting tips 52 can be used to remove high spots so that the remaining paint is of a uniform thickness. The cutting tips 52 may also be adjusted at various depths so as to remove a majority of the surface paint and reduce the time needed to remove the remaining paint using the ultra-high pressurized water. Once the painted marker has been grinded down the remainder of the exposed paint is easily removed by the use of the pressurized water directed through the spray nozzles 40. An entire cleaning system, not shown, includes a water tank sized to contain an established volume of fluid sufficient to circulate through the system, a pump to pressure the fluid to the grinder head, and a vacuum system to return the contaminated fluid to a tank, and may include a filter means to remove the contaminants from the fluid so that clean fluid can be reintroduced to the rotating spray bar head. The method comprises the steps of increasing the pressure of a fixed volume of fluid, blasting the surface with the pressurized fluid at 25,000 to 40,000psi while grinding a majority of the roadway marking paint, and then vacuuming the debris. The grinder head is rotatable, or may include an adjustable oscillation to vary the width of the surface being cleaned with a single orbital head.

The spindle 14 is supported by a thrust bushing 60 which cooperates with a support hub 62 of a hydraulic motor to prevent unwanted harmonics and oscillations in the spinner 12 during rotational movement thereof. The thrust bushing 60 may be constructed of any suitable material, including metals, plastics, ceramics or suitable combinations thereof. The support hub 62 has a flange adapter 64 for securement to a shroud as illustrated in Applicant's U.S. Patent 9,180,496. A shroud having a top, sides and an open bottom is attached to the flange adapter 64, not shown, as the use of a shroud is well known in the industry and would conceal spinner and outer rim 50 which form the basis for this invention. It should be noted that the top of a shroud would be connected to the flange adapter 64 of the hydraulic motor and is used to direct surface material removed by grinding with the cutting tips 52; or removed through the use of high pressure fluid. The shroud is preferably coupled to a vacuum source for collection of displaced material and excess water used in the material removal .

The spinner member 12 is constructed to accept the plurality of spray nozzles 40 positioned around the central spindle 14 in a spoke-like pattern of bridges which extend outwardly to outer rim 50. The spinner head 12 has a mass that allows ease the cutting tips 52 for removing material . The number and type of spray nozzles utilized may vary without departing from the scope of the invention. It should also be noted that, while it is preferred that the spray nozzles are arranged around the central aperture to distribute loading, the spray nozzles may be positioned on one or more sides of the central aperture without departing from the scope of the invention. The cutting tips 52 are preferably staggered and/or positioned at a predetermined angle to assure removal of roadway material during the rotational step.

It is to be understood that while a certain form of the invention is illustrated, it is not to be limited to the specific form or arrangement herein described and shown. It will be apparent to those skilled in the art that various changes may be made without departing from the scope of the invention, and the invention is not to be considered limited to what is shown and described in the specification and any drawings/figures included herein.

The term "coupled" is defined as connected, although not necessarily directly, and not necessarily mechanically. The use of the word "a" or "an" when used in conjunction with the term "comprising" in the claims and/or the specification may mean "one," but it is also consistent with the meaning of "one or more" or "at least one." The use of the term "or" in the claims is used to mean "and/or" unless explicitly indicated to refer to alternatives only or the alternative are mutually exclusive, although the disclosure supports a definition that refers to only alternatives and "and/or."

The terms "comprise" (and any form of comprise, such as "comprises" and "comprising"), "have" (and any form of have, such as "has" and "having"), "include" (and any form of include, such as "includes" and "including") and "contain" (and any form of contain, such as "contains" and "containing") are open-ended linking verbs. As a result, a method or device that "comprises," "has," "includes" or "contains" one or more steps or elements, possesses those one or more steps or elements, but is not limited to possessing only those one or more elements. Likewise, a step of a method or an element of a device that "comprises," "has," "includes" or "contains" one or more features, possesses those one or more features, but is not limited to possessing only those one or more features.

One skilled in the art will readily appreciate that the present invention is well adapted to carry out the objectives and obtain the ends and advantages mentioned, as well as those inherent therein. The embodiments, methods, procedures and techniques described herein are presently representative of the preferred embodiments, are intended to be exemplary, and are not intended as limitations on the scope. Changes therein and other uses will occur to those skilled in the art which are encompassed within the spirit of the invention and are defined by the scope of the appended claims .