Jerome G. Belter
William A. Cuchlinski, Jr.
Daniel G. DePumpo
MacMillan, Sobanski & Todd
A one-piece baffle/metering insert is utilized to block or partially restrict the flow of fluid through an aperture formed in a gasket. The insert is constructed of a single piece of stainless steel and is provided with two pair of flange portions about its outer periphery which enables the entire periphery of the insert to be sealingly secured within the gasket aperture. The present invention also includes a unique method of securing the insert within an associated gasket aperture.
The present invention relates generally to gasket assemblies and, more particularly, to an insert for mounting in an aperture of a standard size gasket. The insert can either function as a baffle to completely block the gasket aperture, or as a metering device which provides a predetermined size aperture for precisely controlling fluid flow therethrough.
Heretofore, gasket manufacturers have produced standardized gasket designs and have modified these gaskets by use of gasket attachments or inserts in order that a single gasket design can be used in several different applications. Gasket attachments typically are used to either fully or partially block openings in a standard size gasket, or to create additional sealing surfaces which extend therefrom. By utilizing these gasket attachments, the associated manufacturing costs can be substantially reduced.
Examples of gasket inserts which can be used to partially reduce the opening through a gasket aperture are disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 4,126,318 and 4,405,138. Examples of gasket inserts which can be utilized to completely block an opening in a gasket aperture are disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 4,505,486 and 4,534,572.
The present invention is concerned with a one-piece baffle/metering insert which is utilized to block or partially restrict the flow of fluid through an aperture formed in a gasket. The present invention is also concerned with a unique method of securing the insert within an associated gasket aperture. In the preferred embodiments of the invention, the insert has been proposed for use as an EGR metering gasket or as a baffle in an intake manifold gasket.
In particular, the insert is constructed of a single piece of stainless steel sheet material and includes a peripheral portion which generally corresponds to the shape of the gasket aperture, and is adapted to sealingly engage an edge surface of the gasket aperture. Further, the insert includes a first pair of flanges for engaging one surface of the gasket, and a second pair of flanges which are crimped against the opposite surface of the gasket to secure the insert to the gasket. The central portion of the insert can either be adapted to function as a baffle and completely block the gasket aperture, or it can be provided with a predetermined aperture for precisely metering fluid flow through the gasket aperture. In both cases, the central portion of the gasket is provided with an inner formed portion for increasing the overall strength of the insert.
It has been found that a gasket insert having a single piece construction of the present invention provides an effective means of securing the insert to the gasket aperture, while insuring that the entire peripheral portion of the insert is in sealing engagement with the inner edge portion of the gasket aperture.
The above, as well as other advantages of the present invention, will become readily apparent to one skilled in the art from reviewing the following detailed description of the invention in conjunction with the attached drawings.
FIG. 1 is a plan view illustrating a gasket assembly including a gasket insert embodying the principles of the present invention for use as a metering device in a engine EGR system;
FIG. 2 is a sectional view taken along the line 2--2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along the line 3--3 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view generally illustrating the manner in which the insert of FIG. 1 is assembled with its associated gasket member;
FIG. 5 is a plan view of a gasket assembly including an alternate embodiment of a gasket insert embodying the principles of the present invention for use as a baffle in an intake manifold gasket;
FIG. 6 is a sectional view taken along the line 6--6 of FIG. 5;
FIG. 7 is a sectional view taken along the line 7--7 of FIG. 5; and
FIG. 8 is an exploded perspective view generally illustrating the manner in which the insert of FIG. 5 is assembled with its associated gasket member.
Referring first to FIGS. 1 through 4, there is shown a gasket assembly 10 which uses an insert according to the present invention which is designed to function as a metering device. The particular gasket assembly shown in FIGS. 1 through 4 is specifically designed for use as a metering device in an automotive exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system. The gasket assembly 10 includes a main gasket body 12 and a generally circular-shaped insert 14. The insert 14 is provided with a central aperture 16 of a predetermined size. Typically, the gasket 12 is constructed of a graphite composite main portion 18, which is reinforced with stainless steel members 20. The insert 14 is typically of a one-piece stainless steel construction.
The gasket body 12 is provided with a central circular aperture 22 for receiving the insert, and two smaller diameter apertures 24a and 24b which are adapted to receive conventional mounting bolts. As shown in FIG. 4, prior to being secured to the gasket body 12, the insert 14 is formed to include a pair of radially extending flanges 26a and 26b (parallel to the gasket body 12) and a pair of upstanding or axially extending circular flanges 28a and 28b (perpendicular to the flanges 26a and 26b). The central aperture 22 in the gasket body 12 is formed of a diameter D which corresponds to the diameter of the circular flanges 28a and 28b.
When assembling the gasket assembly 10, the flanges 28a and 28b of the insert 14 are inserted through the aperture 22, and then are crimped downwardly against the one surface 30 of the gasket member 12 to sealingly engage the surface 30 by partially compressing it, as shown in FIG. 2 at areas 31. The flanges 28a and 28b are crimped in such a manner that the other flanges 26a and 26b partially compress and sealingly engage the opposite surface 32 of the gasket member 12, as shown in FIG. 3 at areas 33. Since collectively the flanges 26a and 26b and 28a and 28b surround the entire periphery of the insert, the insert will be in sealing engagement with the gasket member 12 about its entire periphery. Thus, fluid flow through the gasket aperture 22 will only be permitted through the insert aperture 16. The insert can be provided with a central, preformed portion 36 for increasing the strength of the insert.
Referring now to FIGS. 5 through 8, there is shown an alternate embodiment of an insert embodying the principles of the present invention. FIG. 8 illustrates a generally rectangular-shaped insert 42 adapted to be placed and sealingly secured within a rectangular aperture 44 formed in a gasket member 46. The particular structure in FIGS. 5 through 8 is specifically adapted to block an opening in an intake manifold gasket. This opening is typically provided for coolant fluid flow between the cylinder heads and the intake manifold in a conventional carburated engine. When such cylinder heads are utilized in conjunction with a port fuel injected engine, there may be no need to circulate cooling fluid through the rear intake runners and thus, it is necessary to block these particular fluid passageways if standard cylinder heads are used.
The insert of FIGS. 5 through 8 is secured within the aperture of the gasket member 46 in a manner similar to the insert 14 of FIGS. 1 through 4 is secured to its associated gasket member. More specifically, as shown in FIG. 8, the insert 42 is provided with a pair of outwardly extending flanges 48a and 48b and a pair of downwardly extending flanges 50a and 50b. Collectively, the flanges 48a, 48b, 50a and 50b surround the entire periphery of the insert 42. The insert 42 is also provided with preformed, recessed areas 52a and 52b for increasing the overall strength of the insert.
When assembling the insert 42, the insert is placed into the aperture 44 such that the flanges 50a and 50b project through the aperture. The flanges 50a and 50b are then crimped against the one surface 54 of the gasket member 46 to sealingly engage and partially compress the surface 54, as shown in FIG. 6. When the flanges 50a and 50b are crimped, the opposite flanges 48a and 48b will sealingly engage and partially compress the opposite gasket surface 56, as shown in FIG. 7. As shown in FIG. 6, the side walls 56a and 56b formed by the flanges 50a and 50b sealingly engage the edge wall 57 of the aperture 44. Similarly, as shown in FIG. 7, the side walls 60a and 60b of the flanges 48a and 48b sealingly engage coextensive portions of the edge wall 57 of the aperture 44. Thus, when assembled, the insert 42 is sealingly secured within the gasket aperture 44 about its entire peripheral portion to completely block fluid flow therethrough.
While the present invention has been illustrated and described in what is considered to represent its preferred embodiment, it will be appreciated that the invention can be practiced otherwise than as specifically illustrated and described. For example, the one-piece insert of the present invention can be constructed of materials other than stainless steel. Also, as illustrated in the two different embodiments, the insert can assume various configurations, depending on the particular gasket aperture in which it is to be mounted.