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July 22, 1969 P. KARLAN 3,455,530
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ROTARY VALVE CAM ENGINE Original Filed June 26, 1967 5 Sheets-Sheet 5
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This application is a continuation of my copending application, Ser. No. 648,554, filed June 26, 1967, now abandoned. This invention relates generally to the field of internal combustion engines, and more particularly to an improved form of cam engine in which the pistons are fixedly mounted upon one end of a connecting rod, and the opposite end thereof engages a cam on a driven shaft to impart rotary motion thereto. It is among the principal objects of the present invention to provide in an engine of the above described class a compact configuration obtained by placing the axes of the cylinders in parallel relation with respect to the principal axis of the motion output shaft, whereby the engine may be particularly suited for use in small boats, aircraft and the like. Another object of the invention lies in the provision of a cam engine in which the pistons execute a normal fourcycle function during each revolution of the driven shaft without resort to gear reduction means. Another object of the invention lies in the provision of an improved internal combustion engine in which the pistons thereof are supported for operation without side reaction through contact with the cylinder walls, and can be operated with the output shaft thereof either vertically or horizontally positioned. Yet another object of the invention lies in the provision of an improved internal combustion engine in which induction and exhaust functions are performed by a single rotating disc valve mounted directly upon the driven shaft for rotation therewith. Still another object of the invention lies in the provision of an internal combustion cam engine which, because of the relative reciprocation of the component parts is inherently in balance, without resort to counter weights, vibration dampers, and the like. A further object of the invention lies in the provision of an internal combustion engine of the class described which may be conveniently fabricated using a minimum number of parts, whereby the total cost of production on a volume basis, may be materially less than that encountered in the manufacture of conventional internal combustion engines. A feature of the invention lies in the ready adaptability of the disclosed embodiment to fuel injection diesel operation or carburetion. Another feature of the invention lies in the ready adaptability of the disclosed embodiment to either air or liquid cooling.
Still another feature of the invention lies in the high torque available at low operational speeds, effective engine displacement considered. Another feature of the invention lies in the elimination of timing gears and valve springs in a four cycle engine. These objects and features, as well as other incidental ends and advantages, will more fully appear in the progress of the following disclosure, and be pointed out in the appended claims. In the drawing, to which reference will be made in the specification, similar reference characters have been employed to designate corresponding parts throughout the several views. p _ FIGURE 1 is side elevational view of an embodiment of the invention. FIGURE 2 is a schematic top plan view showing the moving components of the embodiment. FIGURE 3 is a schematic side elevational view as seen from the lower portion of FIGURE 2. FIGURE 4 is a schematic and elevational view thereof, as seen from the right hand portion of FIGURE 3. FIGURE 5 is a transverse sectional view as seen from the plane 4-4 in FIGURE 3. In accordance with the invention, the device, generally indicated reference character 10, comprises broadly a frame element 11, a motion output shaft element 12, a plurality of cylinder and piston assemblies 13, and rotary valve element 14. The frame element 11, as best seen in FIGURE 1 in the drawing, includes a base plate 16 for mounting the device 10 on a horizontal surface (not shown). Extending upwardly from the base plate are a plurality of vertical support members 17 which interconnect with first and second centrally disposed plates 18 and 19 which are interconnected by longitudinally extending bolts 20. The plates 18 and 19 are of solid configuration, and form on the interior portions thereof cylinder heads or manifolds for the assemblies 13, as will more fully appear hereinafter. Extending longitudinally from the plates 18 and 19 are support rods 21a, the outer ends of which engage first and second end plates 22 and 23, respectively. The end plates define generally centrally located openings in which main bearings 24 and 25 are positioned to support the shaft element 12. These bearings handle radially directed loads, that is to say -the weight of the shaft element 12, separate thrust bearings being provided to absorb power impulses. A subframe 26 is supported on rods 27 interconnected with the plate 22 to support the fixed portions of a distributor or magnet 28, the rotor portion thereof being driven directly by the end of the shaft element 12. The shaft element 12 includes the main shaft 29, a first end 30 communicating with the above mentioned distributor 28, and a second end 32 which supports a combined flywheel and starter ring gear 33 of well known type. Intermediate to ends 30 and 32 are a pair of ribbed barrel cams 34 and 35 each including opposed cam faces 36 and 37. Each cam 34-35 includes two symmetrically disposed high points 38 and corresponding low points 39 which may be modified too for dwell areas. Thrust bearings 40 and 41 transmit thrust directly to the plates 18 and 19, as do radical bearings and, respectively, whereby, in conjunction with the bearings 24 and 25, the shaft 29 is limited to pure rotation about its own axis. The cylinder and piston assemblies 13 are best understood from a consideration of FIGURES 2 and 3. Each assembly includes a cylinder sleeve 46 having an exposed surface 47 for air or liquid cooling (not shown). The inner ends 48 of the sleeves 46 are connected to one of the plates 18-19 which, as has been mentioned, functions as a cylinder head or manifold. The outer ends 49