Patent Number: 6,168,368

Title: Frame assembly for a construction machine

Abstract: In many types of construction machines, the frame assembly comprises a rear frame that supports the engine and the majority of the drive train components and a front frame that supports the work implement and related structure. In this type of machine, the two frames are normally pinned together and the front frame is articulated with respect to the rear frame by a pair of steering cylinders to provide steering for the machine. In order to provide the required structural support for the components of the work implement and to accommodate the steering forces, the front frame is necessarily quite large. The present invention provides a front frame (12) structure that includes a pair of main side plates (62, 64) that are positioned a preselected distance (W) from one another and mount a lift arm assembly (30) therebetween to minimize the overall width of the frame assembly. The forward end portion of the front frame assembly (12) has a preselected height (H) that permits the front frame to have a low profile. These features provide a frame assembly that allows an operator exceptional visibility to the work implement (42).

Inventors: Apgar; Curtis W. (Maple Park, IL), Chong; Yon C. (Tiara, SG), Conroy; Timothy S. (Aurora, IL), Mathieu; James K. (Plano, IL), Riediger; Craig W. (Kobe, JP), Sieck; Charles F. (Dunlap, IL)

Assignee: Caterpillar Inc.

International Classification: B62D 21/18 (20060101); E02F 9/08 (20060101); E02F 3/28 (20060101); B66C 023/00 ()

Expiration Date: 01/02/2018