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Aerial tree delimbing apparatus

Imported: 24 Feb '17 | Published: 06 Jan '04

Ervin Ralph Tingstad

USPTO - Utility Patents

Abstract

A tree delimber includes a hollow tube having opposite upper and lower ends, the upper end adapted for mounted below an aerial hoist, the lower end having an anti-rotation device mounted thereto for coupling with, mating into and temporarily entangling with the branches of a tree as the trunk of the tree is journalled upwardly through the hollow tube as the tube is lowered onto the tree and down the trunk of the tree. The anti-rotation device inhibits rotation of the tube about a longitudinal axis of symmetry of the tube. A collar is rotatably mounted to the lower end of the tube. An annular saw blade having a lower cutting edge is mounted to the collar so as to dispose the cutting edge downwardly. The cutting edge of the saw rotates in a circle contained in a plane generally perpendicular to the axis of symmetry of the tube. A prime mover is mounted to the tube. The prime mover is remotely actuable by an operator and cooperates with the collar so that, once actuated, the prime mover urges the collar to rotate about the axis of symmetry of the tube while the tube is held substantially stationary relative to the trunk of a tree by the anti-rotation device engaging the branches of the tree.

Description

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1, is a perspective view of the delimber of the present invention suspended from a helicopter over a tree crown to be trimmed.

FIG. 2 is an enlarged perspective view of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along line

3

3 of FIG.

2.

FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken along line

4

4 of FIG.

3.

FIG. 5 is an enlarged sectional view of the delimber partially lowered over the crown of a tree.

FIG. 6 is an enlarged sectional view of a portion of FIG.

5.

Claims

1. An aerial tree delimbing apparatus comprising:

2. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said drive means is a chain and wherein said motor selectively drives a motor mounted sprocket and said chain.

3. The apparatus of claim 2 wherein a clutch is disposed on an axle between said motor and said motor mounted sprocket and rotation of said sprocket and chain drives said annular saw through said clutch.

4. The apparatus of claim 3 wherein said motor has a throttle operated by an electric solenoid, and wherein said throttle is remotely actuable.

5. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said body has mounted thereto, at said first end, an upwardly and radially outwardly flared collar.

6. The apparatus of claim 2 further comprising a spreader disk wherein said suspension cables may be spaced apart by said spreader disk, a swivel mounted between said cables and the helicopter, said disk mounted in proximity to said swivel.

7. The apparatus of claim 5 wherein a diameter of said annular saw is less than a corresponding diameter of an outermost perimeter of said flared collar at said first end of said tubular body, whereby said collar acts as a funnel so that said body may be lifted upwardly and removed from a tree without catching on the remaining stubs of sawn branches.

8. A tree delimber comprising a hollow tube having opposite upper and lower ends, said upper end adapted for mounted below an aerial hoist, said lower end having an anti-rotation means mounted thereto for coupling with, mating into and temporarily entangling with the branches of a tree as the trunk of the tree is journalled upwardly through the hollow tube as the tube is lowered onto the tree and down the trunk of the tree, wherein said means inhibits rotation of said tube about a longitudinal axis of symmetry of said tube,

9. The tree delimber of claim 8 further comprising an upwardly diverging funnel rigidly mounted to said upper end of said tube.

10. The tree delimber of claim 8 wherein said anti-rotation means is a branch coupler comprising a plurality of downwardly extending rigid members.

11. The tree delimber of claim 10 wherein said rigid members are an array of members radially spaced around, and parallel with, said axis of symmetry.

12. The tree delimber of claim 8 wherein said prime mover is a motor.

13. The tree delimber of claim 12 wherein said motor is an electrical motor powered via an electrical conductor extending from the aerial hoist to said motor.

14. The tree delimber of claim 13 wherein said motor has a drive shaft extending therefrom parallel to said axis of symmetry, a first drive coupler mounted on a distal end of said drive shaft, said first drive coupler drivingly engaging a second drive coupler mounted to said collar wherein rotation of said drive shaft rotates said collar about said axis of symmetry relative to said tube.

15. The tree delimber of claim 14 wherein said first drive coupler is a drive sprocket, and wherein said second drive coupler is an annular sprocket mounted around said tube orthogonally to said axis of symmetry, an endless chain mounted around said drive and annular sprockets for simultaneous rotation thereof.

16. The tree delimber of claim 8 wherein said cutting edge comprises an annular array of cutting teeth mounted around said cutting edge.