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Title:
PIN ASSEMBLY FOR A TRACKED WORK VEHICLE SUSPENSION SYSTEM
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2014/022043
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
An undercarriage 16 for a tracked work vehicle 10 is provided that includes a roller wheel beam 30. The roller wheel beam 30 includes a clevis 100,102 having a first arm 104 and a second arm 106. Additionally, the first arm 104 includes a first opening 108, and the second arm 106 includes a second opening 110. The undercarriage 16 further includes a bushing mount 60, 62 which has a third opening and is configured to be disposed between the first arm 104 and the second arm 106. Also, the undercarriage 16 includes a pin assembly 76, 78 configured to couple the roller wheel beam 30 to the bushing mount 60, 62. Moreover, the pin assembly 76, 78 includes a first pin 130 configured to be inserted into the first opening 108 and a first end of the third opening. The pin assembly 76, 78 also includes a second pin 132 configured to be inserted into the second opening 110 and a second end of the third opening. Furthermore, the first pin 108 is configured to abut the second pin 110 when the first pin 76 and the second pin 78 are inserted into respective openings 108, 110.

Inventors:
VIK BRIAN D (US)
ZURN DANIEL J (US)
Application Number:
PCT/US2013/048467
Publication Date:
February 06, 2014
Filing Date:
June 28, 2013
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
CNH AMERICA LLC (US)
International Classes:
B62D55/00; B62D55/06; B62D55/108
Foreign References:
US5899542A1999-05-04
US4881609A1989-11-21
Other References:
None
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BARTHOLOMEW, Michael L. et al. (Houston, Texas, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS:

1. An undercarriage for a tracked work vehicle, comprising:

a roller wheel beam comprising a clevis, wherein the clevis comprises a first arm and a second arm, and wherein the first arm comprises a first opening and the second arm comprises a second opening;

a bushing mount comprising a third opening, and configured to be disposed between the first arm and the second arm;

a pin assembly configured to couple the roller wheel beam to the bushing mount, wherein the pin assembly comprises:

a first pin configured to be inserted into the first opening and a first end of the third opening;

a second pin configured to be inserted into the second opening and a second end of the third opening;

wherein the first pin is configured to abut the second pin when the first pin and the second pin are inserted into respective openings.

2. The undercarriage of claim 1, wherein the first pin comprises a chamfer at a distal end, and wherein the chamfer is configured to facilitate alignment of the first pin with the third opening.

3. The undercarriage of claim 1, wherein the second pin comprises a chamfer at a distal end, and wherein the chamfer is configured to facilitate alignment of the second pin within the third opening.

4. The undercarriage of claim 1, comprising a bolt having a head and a threaded shaft.

5. The undercarriage of claim 4, wherein the first pin comprises a fourth opening configured to receive the threaded shaft of the bolt, and a notch configured to receive the head of the bolt; and wherein the second pin comprises a fifth annular opening configured to receive the bolt; and receiving threads within the fifth opening, wherein the receiving threads are configured to engage the threaded shaft.

6. The pin assembly of claim 5, wherein the notch is configured to enable an exterior face of the head to be planar with a lateral face of the first pin when the head is fully inserted into the notch.

7. A method of manufacturing an undercarriage for a tracked work vehicle, comprising:

substantially aligning a first opening of a bushing mount with a first slot of a first arm of a beam, and substantially aligning the first opening of the bushing mount with a second slot of a second arm of the beam;

inserting a first pin through the first slot and into a first end of the first opening;

inserting a second pin through the second slot and into a second end of the first opening; and

securing the first and second pins within the first opening by inserting a bolt through respective second openings in the first and second pins; and engaging a threaded portion of the bolt with a corresponding threaded portion of at least one second opening.

8. The method of claim 7, wherein substantially aligning the first opening of the bushing mount with the first slot of the first arm of the beam comprises compressing a resilient portion of a vertical mount using a compression bolt inserted through a threaded opening in the beam.

9. The method of claim 7, comprising rotating a resilient bushing disposed in the bushing mount by inserting a chamfered distal end of the first pin into the first end of the first opening and inserting a chamfered distal end of the second pin into the second end of the first opening.

10. The method of claim 7, comprising coupling the bushing mount to an undercarriage before coupling the beam to the bushing mount.

11. An undercarriage for a tracked work vehicle, comprising

a roller wheel beam comprising a first arm comprising a first slot; and a second arm comprising a second slot;

a bushing mount configured to be positioned between the first and second arms, wherein the bushing mount comprises a first opening;

a pin assembly comprising:

a bolt comprising a bolt head; and a threaded shaft;

a first pin configured to be inserted into the first slot and into a first end of the first opening, wherein the first pin comprises a first pin head, a notch configured to receive the bolt head, and a second opening along a longitudinal axis of the first pin, wherein the second opening is configured to receive the threaded shaft of the bolt; and

a second pin configured to be inserted into the second slot and into a second end of the first opening, wherein the second pin comprises a second pin head, a third opening along a longitudinal axis of the second pin, and a threaded portion of the third opening, wherein the threaded portion is configured to engage the threaded shaft of the bolt.

12. The undercarriage of claim 1 1, wherein the bushing mount comprises: a rigid frame having a fourth opening;

a resilient bushing disposed within the fourth opening; and

a cylindrical bushing having the first opening, wherein the resilient bushing is disposed about a circumference of the cylindrical bushing.

13. The undercarriage of claim 12, wherein the beam comprises a first threaded opening, the bushing mount comprises a second threaded opening adjacent to the first threaded opening, and the first and second threaded openings are each configured to receive a compression bolt.

14. The undercarriage of claim 13, comprising the compression bolt configured to substantially align the first slot with the first end of the first opening, and to substantially align the second slot with the second end of the first opening by compressing a resilient pad of a vertical mount via rotation of the bolt within the first and second threaded openings.

15. The undercarriage of claim 12, wherein the cylindrical bushing is steel.

16. The undercarriage of claim 12, wherein the cylindrical bushing is bonded to the resilient bushing.

17. The undercarriage of claim 1 1, wherein the first arm comprises a first recess concentric with the first slot, wherein the first recess is configured to receive the first pin head such that an exterior face of the first pin head is planar with an exterior face of the first arm when the first pin is fully inserted into the first slot.

18. The undercarriage of claim 11, wherein the second arm comprises a second recess concentric with the second slot, wherein the second recess is configured to receive the second pin head such that an exterior face of the second pin head is planar with an exterior face of the second arm when the second pin is fully inserted into the second slot.

19. The undercarriage of claim 18, wherein the second pin head is obround or polygonal, and wherein the second recess has a corresponding shape.

20. The undercarriage of claim 11, wherein the notch is configured to receive the bolt head such that an exterior face of the bolt head is planar with an exterior face of the first pin when the bolt head is fully inserted into the notch.

Description:
PIN ASSEMBLY FOR A TRACKED WORK VEHICLE

SUSPENSION SYSTEM

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

[0001] This application claims priority from and the benefit of U.S. Patent Provisional Application Serial No. 61/677,41 1, entitled "PIN ASSEMBLY FOR A TRACKED WORK VEHICLE SUSPENSION SYSTEM", filed July 30, 2012, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

BACKGROUND

[0002] The present disclosure relates generally to tracked work vehicles, and more particularly, to a pin assembly for a tracked work vehicle suspension system.

[0003] Certain work vehicles are driven by a track system having continuous tracks and a suspension system, which includes an undercarriage beam supported by a bushing mount. The undercarriage beam is used to support the vehicle above load bearing wheels (e.g., roller wheels), which roll on the continuous track as the vehicle traverses a field. It is desirable to distribute the weight of the work vehicle on the load bearing wheels to reduce stress on the continuous track that may otherwise reduce track longevity due to overheating or other weight overload issues. To enable weight distribution across the load bearing wheels, certain embodiments of the suspension system damp movement (e.g., roll, pitch, and yaw) of the wheels and an attached beam. Furthermore, it is often desirable to limit the width of the suspension system to control the overall width of the vehicle. For example, if the suspension system uses a shear element to damp the movement of the wheels, and to support the vehicle, the width of the suspension system may be wider than is desirable, and/or may not provide sufficient damping of vertical motion (e.g., pitch) after extended periods of use. BRIEF DESCRIPTION

[0004] In one embodiment, an undercarriage for a tracked work vehicle includes a roller wheel beam. The roller wheel beam includes a clevis having a first arm and a second arm. Additionally, the first arm includes a first opening, and the second arm includes a second opening. The undercarriage further includes a bushing mount which has a third opening and is configured to be disposed between the first arm and the second arm. Also, the undercarriage includes a pin assembly configured to couple the roller wheel beam to the bushing mount. Moreover, the pin assembly includes a first pin configured to be inserted into the first opening and a first end of the third opening. The pin assembly also includes a second pin configured to be inserted into the second opening and a second end of the third opening. Furthermore, the first pin is configured to abut the second pin when the first pin and the second pin are inserted into respective openings.

[0005] In another embodiment, a method of manufacturing an undercarriage for a tracked work vehicle includes substantially aligning a first opening of a bushing mount with a first slot of a first arm of a beam, and substantially aligning the first opening of the bushing mount with a second slot of a second arm of the beam. Additionally, the method includes inserting a first pin through the first slot and into a first end of the first opening and inserting a second pin through the second slot and into a second end of the first opening. Furthermore, the method includes securing the first and second pins within the first opening by inserting a bolt through respective second openings in the first and second pins; and engaging a threaded portion of the bolt with a corresponding threaded portion of at least one second opening.

[0006] In another embodiment, an undercarriage for a tracked work vehicle includes a roller wheel beam. The roller wheel beam includes a first arm having a first slot and a second arm having a second slot. The undercarriage further includes a bushing mount configured to be positioned between the first and second arms. The bushing mount includes a first opening. The undercarriage also includes a pin assembly. The pin assembly includes a bolt having a bolt head and a threaded shaft. Additionally, the pin assembly includes a first pin configured to be inserted into the first slot and into a first end of the first opening. The first pin includes a first pin head, a notch configured to receive the bolt head, and a second opening along a longitudinal axis of the first pin configured to receive the threaded shaft of the bolt. Furthermore, the pin assembly includes a second pin configured to be inserted into the second slot and into a second end of the first opening. The second pin includes a second pin head, a third opening along a longitudinal axis of the second pin, and a threaded portion of the third opening. Moreover, the threaded portion is configured to engage the threaded shaft of the bolt.

DRAWINGS

[0007] These and other features, aspects, and advantages of the present invention will become better understood when the following detailed description is read with reference to the accompanying drawings in which like characters represent like parts throughout the drawings, wherein:

[0008] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an embodiment of a tracked work vehicle having a suspension system;

[0009] FIG. 2 is a perspective view of an embodiment of a suspension system that may be employed within the tracked work vehicle of FIG. 1 ;

[0010] FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the suspension system shown in FIG. 2;

[0011] FIG. 4 is a partially exploded perspective view of the suspension system shown in FIG. 2;

[0012] FIG. 5 is a partially exploded perspective view of an embodiment of a roller wheel beam that may be employed within the suspension system of FIG. 2;

[0013] FIG. 6 is an exploded perspective view of an embodiment of a pin assembly that may be employed within the suspension system of FIG. 2; [0014] FIG. 7 is a partially exploded perspective view of the roller wheel beam and bushing mount of FIG. 5; and

[0015] FIG. 8 is a flowchart of an embodiment of a method for manufacturing an undercarriage for a tracked work vehicle.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0016] One or more specific embodiments of the present disclosure will be described below. In an effort to provide a concise description of these embodiments, all features of an actual implementation may not be described in the specification. It should be appreciated that in the development of any such actual implementation, as in any engineering or design project, numerous implementation-specific decisions must be made to achieve the developers' specific goals, such as compliance with system-related and business-related constraints, which may vary from one implementation to another. Moreover, it should be appreciated that such a development effort might be complex and time consuming, but would nevertheless be a routine undertaking of design, fabrication, and manufacture for those of ordinary skill having the benefit of this disclosure.

[0017] When introducing elements of various embodiments of the present disclosure, the articles "a," "an," "the," and "said" are intended to mean that there are one or more of the elements. The terms "comprising," "including," and "having" are intended to be inclusive and mean that there may be additional elements other than the listed elements. Any examples of operating parameters and/or environmental conditions are not exclusive of other parameters/conditions of the disclosed embodiments.

[0018] Various embodiments of the present disclosure include a suspension system configured to damp vibrations between a track and a work vehicle. As discussed below, the suspension system uses an undercarriage beam to suspend the vehicle over load bearing wheels, which are coupled to a roller wheel beam. The suspension system damps roll of the roller wheel beam to enhance contact between the continuous track and the ground, even when the work vehicle is operated on uneven terrain. In addition, the suspension system blocks roll of the roller wheel beam beyond a threshold angle to substantially reduce or eliminate the possibility of contact between various elements of the suspension system and/or the vehicle. Additionally, roll damping and limiting may be performed by bushing mounts and vertical mounts compactly placed between the arms of the roller wheel beam and the roller wheels. In certain embodiments, the roller wheel beam is compactly coupled to the bushing mounts using a pin assembly. In some embodiments, the pin assembly may not extend outwardly beyond the edges of the roller wheel beam while enabling the bushing mounts to damp roll and limit roll and/or yaw of the roller wheel beam. In other words, the pin assembly adds no additional width to the roller wheel beam and thereby does not widen the continuous track. Moreover, by using the compact arrangement, the bushing mounts enable roll control of the roller wheels and roller wheel beam without expanding the width of the suspension system. By minimizing the width of the suspension system, the pin assembly and bushing mounts enable roll control while enabling operation of the work vehicle in work spaces with narrow constraints. For example, the work vehicle with narrower tracks may be operated in a field with narrower rows of soil between vegetation without damaging the vegetation than a wider-tracked vehicle may operate. Additionally, a narrower track compacts less soil than a wider-tracked vehicle, thereby leaving the field more suitably cultivated than a field on which a wider-tracked vehicle has been operated. Accordingly, a vehicle having a narrower track and suspension system enables more efficient planting of vegetation in a field, thereby increasing efficiency of the fields in which the vehicle is operated.

[0019] Turning now to the drawings, FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an embodiment of a tracked work vehicle 10. The vehicle 10 includes a suspension system 12 used to support the vehicle 10 and to damp vibrations between the continuous track 14 and a frame of the vehicle. As will be appreciated, a narrower track may be used to operate between crop rows. As discussed below, embodiments of the work vehicle 10 with a narrow track 14 may include narrower components within the suspension system 12. The undercarriage beam 16 may be formed using casting, machining, and/or other suitable methods of forming the undercarriage beam 16. Moreover, the undercarriage beam 16 may be formed from steel, iron (e.g., ductile iron), and/or other materials suitable for formation of the undercarriage beam 16 capable of supporting the vehicle 10. Additionally, the tracked work vehicle 10 has a body 18. In certain embodiments the body 18 may enclose various components used to operate the vehicle 10. For example, in some embodiments, the body 18 may enclose an engine, a transmission, a drive train, an exhaust system, and/or another vehicle component suitable for inclusion within the vehicle 10. In other embodiments, the vehicle 10 may have some or all of the suitable vehicular components exterior to the body 18. The vehicle 10 further includes a driver compartment 20. In some embodiments, the driver compartment 20 may be fully enclosed (e.g., having glass windows all around the drive compartment 20), as illustrated. Other embodiments may include a driver compartment 20 that is open to the environment with or without a compartment roof. Furthermore, in certain embodiments, the driver compartment 20 may include steering controls, a seat apparatus, temperature controls, and/or other suitable driver controls.

[0020] FIG. 2 is a perspective view of an embodiment of the suspension system 12. The suspension system 12 includes a drive wheel 22 having multiple drive spokes 24 extending from its center to the perimeter of the drive wheel 22. Additionally, the continuous track 14 has multiple track protrusions 26 disposed along the length of the continuous track 14. Moreover, the drive wheel 22 is drivably coupled to the engine of the vehicle 10 so that the engine operation of the engine may turn the drive wheel 22 through a drive train, transmission, and/or another suitable drive system. The drive spokes24 rotate about the circumference of the drive wheel 22 when the drive wheel 22 rotates. When rotating about the drive wheel 22, a drive spoke 24 engages a respective track protrusion 26 such that the rotation of the drive wheel 22 in one direction propels the continuous track 14 in the same direction.

[0021] The illustrated suspension system 12 further includes four idler wheels 28. As discussed below, the idler wheels 28 provide tension to the continuous track 14 to maintain contact between the track protrusions 26 and the respective drive spokes 24. Furthermore, by spacing the idler wheels 28 at a distance relatively close to the width of the track protrusions 28, the idler wheels 28 provide guidance to the continuous track 12 to block the continuous track 12 from laterally rotating away from the suspension system 12. Furthermore, although the illustrated track suspension 12 includes four idler wheels 22, other embodiments may include 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, or more idler wheels 28.

[0022] As discussed below, a roller wheel beam 30 supports the suspension system 12 by coupling with the undercarriage beam 16. The roller wheel beam 30 also couples with multiple roller wheels 32 arranged in two rows that are arranged at a distance that is at least the width of the roller wheel beam 30 and width of the protrusions. The roller wheels 32 provide support to the suspension system and roll along the continuous track 14 when the continuous track 14 is propelled around the suspension system 12 by the drive wheel 22. As can be appreciated, it is desirable to distribute the weight among the roller wheels 32 or else risk damage to the continuous track 12 and/or suspension system 12. For example, if one row of the roller wheels 32 receives an excessive portion of the vehicle load, the continuous track 14 may overheat where the continuous track 14 engages the respective row of roller wheels 32, thereby potentially causing damage to and/or lateral rotation of the continuous track 14. As illustrated, certain embodiments of the suspension system 12 may include 6 roller wheels 32 arranged in two rows. Other embodiments of the suspension system 12 may include 2, 4, 6, 8, or more roller wheels arranged in rows.

[0023] Since a width of the roller wheel beam 30 is restricted by a distance between the roller wheels 32 and the distance between the roller wheels 32 is restricted by the width of the continuous track 14, the width of the roller wheel beam 30 is ultimately restricted by the width of the continuous track 14. Similarly, a width of the undercarriage beam 16 is ultimately restricted by the width of continuous track 14 through its restriction of the distance between the idler wheels 28. In some embodiments, a narrow continuous track 14 is desirable, as previously discussed, but a narrow width of the continuous track 14 would at least partially restrict the width of the undercarriage beam 16 and roller wheel beam 30. Accordingly, in such embodiments, it is desirable to have a narrow undercarriage beam 16 and roller wheel beam 30. [0024] FIG. 3 is a cross-section of an embodiment of the suspension system 12. As illustrated, the suspension system 12 includes a tensioning system 34 disposed within the undercarriage beam 16. The tensioning system 34 includes an actuator 36, overload protection system 38, and an extension arm 40. The actuator 36 includes a piston 42 and an actuator body 44. The extension arm 40 couples to a pivot assembly 46. The pivot assembly 46 includes a static pivot joint 48 and an extendable pivot joint 50 each coupled to an idler wheel axle 52 via a pivot plate 54. As discussed below, each pivot joint enables the idler wheel axle 52 to move in a substantially horizontal direction according to the movement of the extension arm 40 along a longitudinal axis 56 of the extension arm 40. Furthermore, the suspension system 12 includes a protection plate 58 coupled to the undercarriage beam to protect the tensioning system 34 from dirt and other contaminants that may otherwise obstruct the operation of the actuator 36, the overload protection system 38, or the extension arm 40.

[0025] In certain embodiments, the actuator may be a hydraulic cylinder. In such embodiments, the actuator body 44 may be filled with a hydraulic fluid, thereby extending the piston 42 out of the actuator body 44. When the piston 42 extends, it pushes against the overload protection system 38. In the illustrated embodiment, the overload protection system 38 is a coil spring configured to prevent overload of the actuator 36, but other embodiments may include other suitable overload protection systems, such as a hydraulic accumulators using raised weight, compressed gas, or metal bellows. Tension in the overload protection system 38 exerts pressure against the extension arm 40 thereby extending the arm 40 away from the actuator 36. As the extension arm 40 extends in the longitudinal direction 56, the extendable pivot joint 52 moves in the same direction, thereby enabling the idler wheel axle 52 to move in the same direction. As can be appreciated, by extending the extension arm 40 at a desired pressure, the continuous track 14 may be loaded with a desired tension to block lateral rotation of the continuous track 14 during operation of the vehicle 10.

[0026] Additionally, suspension system 12 includes a front bushing mount 60 and a rear bushing mount 62 used to couple the roller wheel beam 30 to the undercarriage beam 16, as discussed below. Further, the suspension system 12 includes multiple vertical mounts 64. The vertical mounts 64 enable the undercarriage beam 16 to support a vertical load (e.g., weight of the vehicle 10) and to absorb vertical movement of the roller wheel beam 30 during operation of the vehicle 10. Additionally, the illustrated embodiment of the suspension system 12 includes two vertical mounts, but other embodiments may include 0, 1, 2, 3, or more vertical mounts.

[0027] FIG. 4 is a partially exploded view of the suspension system 12. Specifically, the undercarriage beam 16, roller wheel beam 30, front bushing mount 60, rear bushing mount 62, and vertical mounts 64 are shown. For the purposes of discussion reference may be made to a longitudinal direction 66, an axial direction 68, and a vertical direction 70 with respect to the roller wheel beam 30 and undercarriage beam 16. Reference may also be made to a pitch direction 71, a roll direction 72, and a yaw direction 73 for the suspension system 12.

[0028] In certain embodiments, the front bushing mount 60 is coupled to the undercarriage beam 16 via front mount bolts 74 and is also coupled to the roller wheel beam 30 via a front pin assembly 76, and the rear bushing mount 62 is coupled to the undercarriage beam 16 via rear mount bolts 75 and is also coupled to the roller wheel beam 30 via a rear pin assembly 78. Other embodiments may couple the front bushing mount and/or the rear bushing mount 62 to the undercarriage beam 16 using welding connection, brackets, braces, or other suitable connections. As discussed in detail below, the pin assemblies 76, 78 compactly couple the roller wheel beam 30 to a respective bushing mount 60, 62, thereby enabling a compact placement of the roller wheels 32. Moreover, the coupling between the bushing mounts 60, 62 and the roller wheel beam 30 damps movement of the roller wheel beam 30 in the roll direction 72 and limits movement of the roller wheel beam 30 in the roll direction 72 and the yaw direction 73.

[0029] Each vertical mount 64 includes a lower pad 80, a rubber pad 82, and an upper pad 84. In certain embodiments, the width of the lower pad 80 and the upper pad 84 in the axial direction 68 is equal to a width of the roller wheel beam 30 in the axial direction 68. In other embodiments, the width of the lower pad 80 and the upper pad 84 may be greater than or equal to the width of the roller wheel beam 30 in the axial direction 68. Moreover, the lower pad 80 has two lower flanges 86 that extend downwardly in the vertical direction 70 on opposite ends of each lower pad 80. The lower flanges 86 have a width in the longitudinal direction 66 that is less than or substantially equal to a width of a roller wheel beam notch 88 in the longitudinal direction 66. The roller wheel beam notch 88 is formed into the roller wheel beam 30 such that the notch 88 may receive the lower pad 80 until the lower pad 80 is planar with the lateral and upper faces of the roller wheel beam 30. In other words, the roller wheel beam notch 88 may be substantially the same size and shape as the lower pad 80.

[0030] As can be appreciated, the wheel beam notch 88 blocks the vertical mount 64 from moving in the longitudinal direction 66, and the lower flanges 86 block movement of the vertical mount 64 in the axial direction 68. Similar to the lower pad 80, the upper pad 84 has two upper flanges 90 located on opposite ends of the upper pad 84. The upper flanges 90 extend upwardly in the vertical direction 70 having a width in the longitudinal direction 66 that less than or substantially equal to the width of a notch in the undercarriage beam 16. The undercarriage beam notch secures the upper pad 84 relative to the undercarriage beam 16 to block movement of each respective vertical mount 64 in a manner similar to the roller wheel beam notch 88 securing the lower pad 80. The vertical mounts 64 also include a rubber pad 82. The rubber pad 82 provides support for the undercarriage beam 16 and enables the roller wheel beam 30 to move in the vertical direction 70 while damping the movement in the vertical direction 70 thereby reducing the movement transmitted to the undercarriage beam 16 and ultimately the remainder of the vehicle 10 (e.g. driver compartment).

[0031] FIG. 5 is a partially exploded perspective view of the roller wheel beam 30, front bushing mount 60, and rear bushing mount 62 of the suspension system 12. The roller wheel beam 30 has a front clevis 100 and a rear clevis 102. Each clevis has a first arm 104 and a second arm 106. The first arm 104 has a first opening 108, and the second arm has a second opening 110. In certain embodiments, the first opening 108 and/or the second opening 1 10 may have an annular shape, a polygonal shape, a combination thereof, or any other suitable shape. Additionally, in some embodiments, the openings may vary in size relative to one another. The first arm 104 also includes a first recess that is located on an exterior face of the roller wheel beam 30 and concentric with the first opening 108. In some embodiments, the first recess may be cylindrical, polyhedral, or another shape (e.g., obround). Similarly, the second arm 106 includes a second recess 1 12 located on an exterior face of the roller wheel beam 30 and concentric with the second opening 110. The illustrated embodiment of the second recess 1 12 is obround, but other embodiments of the second recess 1 12 may be cylindrical, polyhedral, or another shape. In certain embodiments, it may be desirable to form the second opening 1 10 and/or the second recess 1 12 into a shape that blocks rotation of a pin within the second opening 110. Moreover, each arm 104, 106 may include a machined section 1 14 on an inner surface of the arm about a respective opening 108, 1 10 to enable rotation of a bushing in contact with the arms.

[0032] The illustrated embodiment of the suspension system 12 further includes the front bushing mount 60 and the rear bushing mount 62. Each bushing mount 60, 62 includes a frame 116 formed from a rigid material (e.g., steel, ductile iron, etc.) suitable for mounting the bushing mount 60, 62 to the undercarriage beam 16. In certain embodiments, the frame 116 may provide additional support to the undercarriage beam 16, and may be coupled to the undercarriage beam using front and rear mount bolts 74, 75. In other embodiments, the rigid frame 116 may be coupled to the undercarriage beam 16 by brackets, braces, welded connections, or another suitable coupling. Furthermore, the rigid frame 116 includes a frame opening 118 that extends through the rigid frame 1 16. In certain embodiments, the frame opening 1 18 may have a cylindrical or annular shape. However, other embodiments may include frame openings 1 18 having a polyhedral shape. Moreover, each bushing mount 60, 62 includes a bushing 120 disposed within the frame opening 1 18. In some embodiments, the bushing 120 may be formed from rubber or other resilient materials suitable for compression within the frame opening 1 18. Additionally, the shape of the bushing 120 may be selected to correspond to the frame opening 1 18. [0033] Each bushing 120 may include one or more cutouts 122. The number, size, location, and shape of the cutouts 122 may be selected to achieve a desired resistance to compression in each direction. For example, to enable more compression of the bushing 120, the bushing 120 may include additional cutouts 122 or cutouts having an increased size. Alternatively, the bushing 120 may include fewer cutouts 122, and/or smaller cutouts 122 to reduce the compressibility of the bushing 122. Accordingly, various embodiments of the bushing 122 may include 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, or more cutouts 122 with various locations, sizes, and shapes selected according to the desired compressibility of the bushing 120. Furthermore, each bushing 120 includes a bushing opening 124 that extends through the bushing 120. An interior bushing 126 is located within the bushing opening 124. The interior bushing 126 may be formed from steel, iron, or another suitable rigid material. In some embodiments, the interior bushing 126 may be bonded to the bushing 122 (e.g., using an adhesive or a material connection). Additionally, the interior bushing 126 may extend beyond the bushing 120 on either lateral side of the bushing opening 124, thereby enabling rotation of the interior bushing 126 even when the interior bushing 126 abuts the machined portion 114. The interior bushing 126 includes an interior bushing opening 128 that extends through the interior bushing 126. Additionally, the interior bushing 126 may have an annular cross-section, a rectangular cross-section, or any cylindrical/polyhedral cross- section having an interior bushing opening 128. Moreover, the bushing opening 124 may be any shape corresponding to the shape of the interior bushing 126 so that the wall of the interior bushing 126 engages the wall of the bushing opening 124.

[0034] The suspension system 12 further includes pin assemblies 76, 78 that are each configured for insertion into a respective opening within a respective bushing mount 60, 62. Each pin assembly 76, 78 includes a first pin 130, a second pin 132, and a pin bolt 134. As discussed in detail below, the first pin 130 is inserted through the first opening 108 and into the interior bushing opening 128 (or the bushing opening 124 if an embodiment of the suspension system 12 does not include the interior bushing 126). Furthermore, the second pin 132 is inserted through the second opening 1 10 and into the interior bushing opening 128 (or the bushing opening 124 if the interior bushing 126 is omitted from an embodiment). [0035] As illustrated in FIG. 6, the first pin 130 includes a first annular opening 136, a first pin head 138, and a first chamfered end 140. Furthermore, the first annular opening 136 extends through the entire first pin 130 along a longitudinal axis 142 of the pin assembly 76, 78. The second pin 132 has a second annular opening 144 along the longitudinal axis 142, a second pin head 146, and a second chamfered end 148. The second annular opening 144 extends into the second pin 132 and has a threaded portion 150. In some embodiments, the second annular opening 144 extends through the entire second pin 132 and the head 146. In other embodiments, the second annular opening 144 only extends through a portion of the second pin 132. Additionally, certain embodiments may include a threaded portion 150 that extends along the entire length of the second annular opening 144, but other embodiments may include a threaded portion 150 that only extends along a portion of the second annular opening 144.

[0036] As will be appreciated, because the bushing 120 is composed of a resilient material, the bushing 120 may rotate within the frame opening 1 18, thereby skewing alignment of the interior bushing opening 128 with the first opening 108 and the second opening 110. To facilitate the alignment of the interior bushing opening 128 with the first opening 108 and the second opening 1 10, each pin has a chamfered end configured to facilitate insertion of the pin into the interior bushing opening 128. Specifically, the first pin 130 has a first chamfered end 140 that enables the first pin 130 to be inserted into the first opening 108 and a first end of the interior bushing opening 128. Similarly, the second pin 132 has a second chamfered end 148 that enables the second pin 132 to be inserted into the second opening 1 10 and a second end of the interior bushing opening 128. As will be appreciated, by inserting both pins 130, 132 into respective openings (e.g., the first opening 108) using a chamfered end (e.g., first chamfered end 140), the pins facilitate further alignment of the interior bushing opening 128 with each respective opening 108, 110. Furthermore, in certain embodiments, the first pin 130 and the second pin 132 may contact each other within the interior bushing opening 128. Other embodiments may include a gap between the first pin 130 and the second pin 132 when the pins are inserted into the interior bushing opening 128. [0037] Additionally, each pin 130, 132 includes a pin head 138, 146 that fits into the respective recess on the roller wheel beam 30 such that each pin head does not extend beyond the exterior surface of the roller wheel beam 30. For example, the first pin head 138 is fully inserted into the first recess in the roller wheel beam 30 such that the first pin head 146 does not extend out from the first recess when the first pin 130 is inserted into the first opening 108. Similarly, the second pin head 138 is fully inserted into the second recess 1 12 such that the second pin head 146 does not extend out from the second recess 1 12 when the second pin 132 is inserted into the second opening 112. In other words, the pins 130, 132 do not increase the width of the roller wheel beam 30 when inserted into their respective openings.

[0038] To enable the insertion of each pin head into the respective recess, each pin head may be formed into a shape that corresponds to the shape of the respective recesses. Accordingly, the pin heads 138, 146 may be formed into any polyhedral shape, cylindrical shape, or any other suitable shape. For example, the illustrated embodiment of the pin assembly 76, 78 include an obround-shaped second pin head 146 that may be inserted into the similarly obround-shaped second recess 1 12. Similarly, - the cylindrical shaped first pin head 138 may be inserted into a similarly shaped first recess. In some embodiments, the pin heads 138, 148 may have a depth that is equal to or less than the depth of the respective recess. In other words, each pin head may be planar with a respective laterally outward surface of the roller wheel beam 30, or may be recessed within the laterally outwards surface of the roller wheel beam 30. As may be appreciated, having each pin 130, 132 recessed in or planar with the sides of the roller wheel beam, the pins may not interfere with operation of the roller wheels 32 when the pins are fully inserted into the roller wheel beam 30. In addition, the pins do not extend the width of the roller wheel beam 30 and/or the continuous track 14.

[0039] The bolt 134 includes a bolt head 152 having a driving section 154. In certain embodiments, the driving section 154 includes a hexagonal shaped recess suitable for driving the bolt 134 in rotation. However, other embodiments may include other suitable arrangements of driving the bolt 134 (e.g., Phillips type drive). Further, a radius of the bolt head 152 is smaller or equal to a radius of the first annular opening 136. By limiting the diameter of the bolt head 152 to the diameter of the first annular opening 136, the bolt 134 may be fully inserted into the first pin 130, thereby substantially reducing or eliminating the possibility of interference with operation of the roller wheels 32. The bolt 134 further includes a shaft 156 having multiple threads 158. In some embodiments, the threads 158 may extend along the full length of the shaft 156. In other embodiments, the threads 158 may extend only a portion of the length of the shaft 156. The threads 158 correspond to the threaded portion 150 of the opening 144 such that the threaded portion 150 engages the threads 158 when the bolt 134 is inserted into the second pin 132. Specifically, after the first pin 130 is inserted into the first opening 108 and the second pin 132 is inserted into the second opening 110, the bolt 134 may be inserted through the first annular opening 136 and into the second annular opening 144 such that the threads 158 engage the threaded portion 150. Accordingly, the bolt 134 secures the first pin 130 and the second pin 132 thereby securing the bushing mount to the roller wheel beam 30.

[0040] FIG. 7 is a partially exploded perspective view of the roller wheel beam 30 and the bushing mounts 60, 62, illustrating an embodiment of a compression bolt 160. As will be appreciated, the vertical mounts 64 may interfere with the vertical alignment of the interior bushing openings 128 and the first and second openings 108, 110 because to the height of the uncompressed vertical mount 64 is greater than the desired final distance between the roller wheel beam 30 and the undercarriage beam 16. However, the resilient pad 82 may be compressed to facilitate vertical alignment of the interior bushing opening 128 with the first and second openings 108, 1 10. In the illustrated embodiment, the roller wheel beam 30 includes a compression slot 162. The compression slot 162 may be aligned with a bolt receiver 164 in the rigid frame 116, which has threads configured to engage corresponding threads on the compression bolt 160. When each bushing mount 60, 62 is properly aligned with the roller wheel beam 30, the compression bolt 160 may be inserted through the compression slot 162 and into the bolt receiver 164. As the compression bolt 160 is rotated, the roller wheel beam 30 is driven closer to the undercarriage beam 16, thereby compressing the vertical mounts 64. After the compression bolt 160 is rotated to substantially align the interior bushing opening 128 with the first opening 108 and the second opening 1 10, the pins may be inserted into the respective openings Furthermore, in some embodiments, after the pins 130, 132 are inserted through respective openings and secured using the bolt 134, the compression bolts 160 may be removed.

[0041] FIG. 8 is a flowchart of an embodiment of a method 200 for manufacturing an undercarriage for a tracked work vehicle. The method 200 includes coupling one or more bushing mounts 60, 62 to an undercarriage beam 16 (block 202). For example, the front bushing mount 60 and/or the rear bushing mount 62 are coupled to the undercarriage beam 16. In certain embodiments, both bushings mounts 60, 62 may be mounted prior to performing the remainder of the method 200, but other embodiments may include mounting only one bushing mount before continuing to the remainder of the method 200.

[0042] After one or more bushing mounts are coupled to the undercarriage beam, an interior bushing opening 128 is substantially aligned with a first and/or second opening in the roller wheel beam 30 using a compression bolt (block 204). For example, the interior bushing opening 128 may be substantially aligned with the first opening 108 and/or the second opening 110 by tightening one or more compression bolts 160 within respective bolt receivers 164. In certain embodiments, the method 200 may include tightening two or more compression bolts 160, substantially simultaneously or in sequence, to facilitate alignment of multiple interior bushing openings 128.

[0043] After one or more interior bushing openings 128 are aligned with the first and/or second openings, a first pin 130 is inserted through the first opening 108 into one end of the interior bushing opening 128 (block 206). For example, the first pin 130 may be inserted into the first opening 108 and into the interior bushing opening 128 using the first chamfered end 140 to enable further alignment of the first opening 108 with the first end of the interior bushing opening 128. Either after block 206 or concurrently with block 206, a second pin 132 is inserted into the second opening 1 10 in an opposite lateral end of the interior bushing opening (block 208). In other words, the second pin 132 may be inserted into the second opening 1 10 using the second chamfered end 148 to enable further alignment of the second opening 110 with the second end of the interior bushing opening 128. After blocks 206 and 208, the pins 130, 132 are secured using a bolt 134 (block 210). For example, one embodiment includes engaging the threads 158 of the bolt 134 with the corresponding threaded portion 150 of the second pin 132 to secure the pins within the respective openings. Finally, after the pins are aligned and secured, the compression bolt may be removed (block 212).

[0044] While only certain features and embodiments of the invention have been illustrated and described, many modifications and changes may occur to those skilled in the art (e.g., variations in sizes, dimensions, structures, shapes and proportions of the various elements, values of parameters (e.g., temperatures, pressures, etc.), mounting arrangements, use of materials, orientations, etc.)) without materially departing from the novel teachings and advantages of the subject matter recited in the claims. It is, therefore, to be understood that the appended claims are intended to cover all such modifications and changes as fall within the true spirit of the disclosure. Furthermore, in an effort to provide a concise description of the embodiments, all features of an actual implementation may not have been described (i.e., those unrelated to the presently contemplated best mode of carrying out the disclosure, or those unrelated to enabling the claimed disclosure). It should be appreciated that in the development of any such actual implementation, as in any engineering or design project, numerous implementation specific decisions may be made. Such a development effort might be complex and time consuming, but would nevertheless be a routine undertaking of design, fabrication, and manufacture for those of ordinary skill having the benefit of this disclosure, without undue experimentation.