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Title:
INTERLOCKING SYSTEM FOR BUILDING WALL, FLOORS, AND ROOFS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2008/048619
Kind Code:
A2
Abstract:
A wall comprising superposed rows of aligned conventional building blocks being approximately parallel front and back faces connected by a plurality of transverse webs defining chambers there between in which the tops and bottoms of the blocks are formed with V-shaped grooves to mate with similarly shaped V-shaped grooves in the adjacent wall or a block placed thereon. Tubing is placed within the adjacent V-shaped grooves to space the blocks from each other and maintain the adjacent rows in proper alignment. Lateral temperature rods may be placed inside the tubes.

Inventors:
NEGRON CRESPO JORGE (US)
Application Number:
PCT/US2007/022109
Publication Date:
April 24, 2008
Filing Date:
October 16, 2007
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
NEGRON CRESPO JORGE (US)
International Classes:
E04C2/04
Foreign References:
US3717967A
US4514949A
US3782052A
US3817006A
US5218801A
US2736188A
US5802797A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
TORRES, Eugenio, J. (Suite 403-404San Juan, Puerto Rico, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:

What is claimed is:

1. A building system comprising: at least one building block having approximately parallel front and back faces connected by a plurality of transverse webs defining chambers between said webs, the top and bottom of said front and back faces being approximately parallel and providing a longitudinally extending top and bottom portions for said at least one block; said top and bottom portions being formed to include two parallel-spaced v-shaped grooves extending along a longitudinal axis defined by said top and bottom portions so that grooves in the top of a block mate with grooves in the bottom of another block above it.

2. The building system of claim 1, further comprising at least one alignment element longitudinally positioned in relation to a space defined by a top v- shaped groove an a corresponding bottom mating v-shaped groove.

3. The building system of claim 2, wherein said alignment element comprises at least one of: a hollow tube, a reinforcing wire, or a combination thereof.

4. The building system of claim 2, wherein said alignment element comprises a circular cross-section element.

5. The building system of claim 4, wherein said alignment element comprises an outer diameter of about 3/8".

6. The building system of claim 2, wherein the diameter of said alignment element and the depth of said v-shaped grooves are selectively chosen so that the spacing between vertically disposed blocks varies from about 0" to

about 1/8".

7. The building system of claim 6, wherein the spacing between vertically disposed blocks varies from about 0.010" to about 0.020".

8. The building system of claim 2, wherein said alignment element extends longitudinally and horizontally to an adjacent block providing two- dimensional block alignment.

9. The building system of claim 2, further comprising a plurality of vertically stacked building blocks and at least one alignment element between each block, wherein the distance from a centerline of a bottom portion alignment element to a centerline of a top portion alignment element is about 7.875" with a tolerance of from about ± 0.002" to about ± 0.004". lO.The building system of claim 9, wherein the height of said building blocks vary from about 7.625" to about 7.750". 11. The building system of claim 1, further comprising a first hinged retaining element selectively positioned to retain said block substantially fixed in relation to a first surface. 12.The building system of claim 11, further comprising a second hinged retaining element selectively positioned to retain said block substantially fixed in relation to a second surface. 13.The building system of claim 11, further comprising an adjustable leveling element selectively coupled to said first hinged retaining element. 14.The building system of claim 13, wherein said adjustable leveling element comprises at least one adjusting portion and a rotating adjusting element to

selectively level said block in relation to at least one of: a floor, a door frame, a roof, another block, or any combination thereof, by converting rotary motion into linear motion.

15.The building system of claim 1, wherein said block further comprises a slot receiving a door frame connecting element to retain said door frame fixed in relation to said block. lβ.The building system of claim 1, further comprising at least one roof supporting channel including at least one receiving element receiving at least one end of an alignment element, wherein said at least one roof supporting channel is selectively positioned between at least two adjacent blocks.

17.A wall comprising the building system of claim 1.

18.A roof comprising the building system of claim 1.

Description:

Interlocking System for Building Walls, Floors, and Roofs

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to a building block assembly and, particularly, to an arrangement which incorporates a system for aligning the blocks in vertical and horizontal relationships.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The conventional concrete block has been recognized as the least expensive construction material and is a very versatile material since it is both, fire-safe, sound-deadening, and absorbing. It also can be made decorative and is readily available all around the world. Furthermore, it is essentially maintenance free and indestructible. In addition, it is obviously termite-safe and almost tenant-safe. The production of building blocks of this type is highly mechanized and economically productive. However, it does depend for its accurate installation on highly skilled labor. Many attempts have been made to mechanize the installation by using cheap, unskilled labor, but it is not generally satisfactory due to the potential of inaccurate positioning of the interfittlng blocks and resulting need for parching, which is very costly. An arrangement that has been employed is my US Patent 4,514,949 which has been generally satisfactory, but it has been found that the point contact occurring with the utilization of spherical balls is not as effective as desired, including the need for light parching.

The general problem that exists, of course is that the existing block

producing machines cannot make the blocks accurate to more than 0.050 of an inch in height, and because of this, the accepted tolerance is ± 1/16 of an Inch, which in extreme instances can be up to 1/8 of an inch. Accordingly, some means must be provided to accommodate this variation in height to insure proper alignment. Accordingly, it is the purpose of this invention to provide a building block assembly which by the utilization or unskilled workers a wall or similar construction can be constructed with accurately positioned rows of building blocks.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In accordance with the present invention, there is provided a building block arrangement which Is constructed with V-shaped grooves along the longitudinal walls thereof in which are fitted plastic tubes or plastic reinforced tubes that insure proper alignment of horizontally or vertically disposed rows of building blocks. While this may appear to be a relatively simple construction, it is of an order of magnitude that with the provision of such grooves, the tubes are able to insure proper alignment and thus level rows of building blocks, thus providing the temperature reinforcing rods within the tubes.

In addition, the slot/guide arrangement of the present invention facilitates the process of mounting blocks typically used in residential and commercial construction. Furthermore, the present invention provides a clean process, where no cement between blocks is used, thus increasing not only the speed of the installation process but the number of blocks installed per time frame and at the same providing the opportunity of using untrained labor for the installation.

Numerous other advantages and features of the present invention will become readily apparent from the following detailed description of the invention and embodiments thereof, from the claims and from the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Further features and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying figures showing illustrative embodiments of the invention, in which:

FIG. 1 shows an exploded perspective view of a three-chamber building block assembly according to an embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 2 shows a front elevation view of two aligned superposed building blocks according to an embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 3 shows a front elevation view of three building blocks in staggered relation to each other according to an embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 4 shows a partial perspective view of two reinforced masonry wall sections according to an embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 5 shows a cross section view of a wall footing from a ground floor slab according to an embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 5A shows a side view of a wall footing from a ground floor slab according to another embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 5B shows a perspective view of a wall footing from a ground floor slab according to another embodiment of the Invention;;

FIG. 5C shows a side view of a wail footing from a ground floor slab according to another embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 5D shows a perspective view of a wall footing from a ground floor slab according to another embodiment of the invention

FIG. 6 shows a perspective view of an interconnection between a door frame and a building block according to an embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 7 shows a partial perspective view of a roof block interconnection arrangement according to an embodiment of.the invention;

FIG. 8 shows a perspective view of a block modifying machine according to an embodiment of the invention; and

FIG. 8A shows a cross section view of a block modifying machine according to an embodiment of the invention.

Throughout the figures, the same reference numbers and characters, unless otherwise stated, are used to denote like elements, components, portions or features of the illustrated embodiments. The subject invention will be described in detail in conjunction with the accompanying figures, in view of the illustrative embodiments. It is clear that changes and modifications to the described embodiments can be made without departing from the scope and spirit of the present invention as defined by the appended claims.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring first to FIG. 1, there is illustrated a building block 20 having grooves 22, 24 formed in longitudinally extending walls 23, 25, respectively. Disposed in the grooves for alignment of adjacent blocks are provided either a plain plastic tubing 26 shown in exploded view or a plastic tubing 26 with a reinforcing wire 28 disposed therein. The tubing used has an outside diameter of 3/8". Both of these arrangements are shown and either of them can be employed if desired. Chambers 30 are defined by the webs 31 and sidewalls 23, 25.

Referring to FIG. 2, the two building blocks 20 are shown In vertical alignment with plastic tubing 26 disposed relative thereto. A longitudinal end view of this arrangement can be seen from FIG. 5. It is to be noted that the diameter of the tubing and the depth of the V-shaped grooves are such that a slight spacing 33 is provided between vertically disposed blocks 20 to insure proper alignment. The spacing between the blocks varies between 0 to 1/8" according to block height error, although may be substantially reduced to a spacing between 0.010" and 0.020" by grinding the block bottoms while grinding the V-cuts.

Referring now to FIG. 3, the arrangement is disposed with the adjacent rows of building blocks located in a staggered relationship. It will be noted that the upper building block 20 overlaps the junction of the lower building blocks 20.

In FIG. 4, there are shown in partial perspective two masonry walls constructed of building blocks 20 that include reinforcing steel rods 32 that are disposed in the longitudinal and transverse direction. These rods are utilized to

reinforce the structures and extend through the chambers 30 of the building block, which will serve to conduct all utilities wiring, ducts, etc. If desired, reinforced concrete 34 is poured into the chambers. There are also provided vertically extending reinforced concrete columns 36.

At the bottom of FIG. 4, there is also shown In perspective the connection between the concrete slab 38 and the building blocks 20. To provide for proper leveling of the building blocks, there are located on the slab 38 leveling channels 40. These channels are secured to the blocks by leveling bar 42 and a rod as shown in section 45. In order to properly level the building blocks relative to the concrete slab, there is a leveling device comprising of bracket 44 through which is disposed a leveling screw 46. The concrete blocks are disposed on the horizontally extending portion of bracket 44 as shown in section 45 and their positions are adjusted relative to the floor slab by adjusting the leveling screws 46. Thus, It can be seen that by adjusting the leveling screws, the level position of the blocks located in the leveling bracket are set. As shown in FIG. 5, and as briefly explained earlier in this application, the adjacent rows are aligned relative to each other by the use of the plastic tubing 26 disposed in groves 22, 24 of each block.

FIGS 5A shows an alternate embodiment of a block leveling means. A vertical retaining means 65 is properly secured to the concrete slab by any known conventional securing means. A second retaining means 64 is securely attached to the building blocks 20 to cooperate with said retaining means 65 when the blocks 20 are vertically positioned against the floor slab 38. A fixing

means 60 is properly secured to building blocks 20 to selectively allow leveling of said blocks 20. Lower stopper 61 serves to hold the bottom of block 20 In a static position relative to side stopper 68. A leveling means 66 is secured to the concrete slab 38 and the upper stopper 63 to selectively allow leveling of the block relative to the concrete slab 38. Leveling means 66 comprises a lower part 70 including a thread end and an upper part 71 including a thread end, which cooperate together in conjunction with adjuster 67 to selectively level the block 20 by rotating said adjuster 67 in a clockwise/counter-clockwise manner. Upper part 71 and upper stopper 63 are structurally connected to a hinged clamp 72 to fixedly secure an inner wall of block 20 in relation to said fixing means 60 as shown in FIG. 5A. Empty space 62 Is filled with concrete to allow proper fixation to the concrete slab.

FIG. 5B is another view of an alternate embodiment of said block leveling means. A plastic tubing 26 in a mating relationship with a v-shaped groove serving as a lower stopper to retain said block fixed in relation to the concrete slab 38. hinged clamp 72b fixedly secures an inner wall of block 20 in relation to fixing means 60b.

FIGS. 5C and 5D show another embodiment of the present invention. A second hinged clamp including a clamp element 80a and a hinge element 81a is provided to further retain said block fixed in relation to a second fixing means 82a. Clamp element 80a Is inserted inside an inner wall of block 20 in such a way as to push block 20 against second fixing means 82a when hinge element 8IaJs actuated in an outwardly manner. Lower stoppers 61a and 61b retain

block 20 horizontally fixed in relation to the floor or concrete slab 38. FIG. 5D shows a plurality of blocks selectively positioned adjacent to each other in an embodiment of the invention to form a wall. Blocks 20 are filled with cement or any suitable filler which is eventually dried. Then, both clamps are removed and another round of blocks is positioned above the already dried blocks using the inventive method. The combination of said upper second hinged clamp and said second fixing means 82a is an alternative to the lower fixing means 60 described in FIG. 5A.

In FIG. 5, the height tolerances are more clearly shown with respect to the two superposed blocks illustrated therein. From the centerline of the tubes, regardless of the block heights that may vary from 7-5/8 inches to 7-3/4 inches, the distance from center line to center line of the tubing 26 is 7.875 inches (20 cm) ± from about 0.002" to about 0.004" in tolerance. It is possible to obtain such close tolerances because of the precise machining of the grooves during drilling. By providing such small tolerance values it is possible to avoid applying cement to the exterior faces of said blocks 20.

When it is desired to mount a door frame relative to a block having the novel construction of the V-shaped grooves in the upper walls thereof, there Is provided a door frame 48 in which is located a steel plate connector 50. This connector is positioned in a slot 52 formed in the wall of the building block to retain the door frame in place relative to the building block as shown in FIG. 6.

FIG. 7 shows the concept of the present invention implemented for building a roof. Channels 90 are provided between blocks 20 to hold them together.

Protrusions 91 are provided to accept inventive rods 92 that will fit into the V- shaped grooves of blocks 20, while reinforcing bars and concrete are used to fill the space within blocks 20.

FIGS. 8 and 8A show a novel machine used to modify building blocks according to one embodiment of the invention. A movable means 100 such a conveyor means is used to properly move the blocks inside, within, and outside of said machine. The movable means is also adapted to ensure that the blocks are substantially positioned in a fixed position without any vertical and/or horizontal movements during the modifying process. To achieve said above mentioned goal, a three-chains arrangement is selectively positioned in relation to said conveyor means to ensure optimal movement and to avoid any loose movement of said blocks while entering the machine. Moreover, a pre-cutting stage could be provided to selectively adjust the height of said blocks to a uniform height before entering a cutting stage. The blocks 20 enter the machine through an opening 105 that substantially fits the outer surface of said blocks 20. A selected clearance between said outer surface and said opening could also be provided. Once the blocks are inside the machine, grinding wheels are used to produce the V-shaped grooves at the bottom and upper part of said blocks. Preferably, diamond dust grinding wheels are used. The grinding wheels are powered by motors 101. In the preferred embodiment the motors are 3-phase, 5 hp motors, which are selectively and individually controlled. The motors could also be controlled together by a single controlling means.

It can be seen from the above that a novel construction is provided

whereby the building blocks 20 can be maintained in level position relative to the ground slab. Also, they can be uniformly placed in a level, condition throughout the length of the walls, as shown in FIG. 4, by the utilization of plastic tubing that is located in the V-shaped grooves formed in the upper walls of the building blocks. The V-shaped grooves are actually formed in both ends of the main walls of the building block and therefore they can be readily installed in position during construction. Blocks 20 can be made of any suitable material regardless of its compression characteristics. The resistance of the wall is controlled by the blocks column and the joint of the top and bottom surfaces. Moreover, the interior part of the wall defined by chambers 30 can be fill by any suitable filler. The present invention avoids the formation of cracks by voids in the the columns.

It is intended to cover by the appended claims all such modifications which fall within true spirit and scope of the invention.