US 2259557 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 21, 1941, U E g A 2,259,557
ENVELOPE HANDLING MACHINE Filed :Jan 4, 19:59 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 NVENTORS? Oct. 21, 1941. 5 J D fi r 2,259,557
ENVELOPE HANDLING MACHINE Filed Jan. 4, 1939 2 Shets-Sheet 2 5 6/ INVENTORS.
[dz/4rd aria/77 7167 W/d I ORN Patented Oct. 21, 1941 OFFICE ENVELOPE HANDLING MACHINE Edward J. Dummer, Rochester, and Ernest L.
Pinder, Irondequoit, Y., assignors to Multipost Company, Rochester, N. Y., a corporation of New York Application January 4, 1939, Serial No. 249,274
2 Claims. (Cl. 91 43) Our present invention relates to envelope handling machines and particularly to envelope sealers wherein the flaps of envelopes passing successively through the machines are raised, their gummed portions moistened and the flap then F pressed down against the body of the envelope. This invention is an improvement upon the machine of our prior patent, No. 2,136,786, dated November 15, 1938, which discloses a combination envelope sealing and envelope opening machine, and it has for its general object to provide the applicator of the flap raising and moistening mechanism of such a machine with a source of water supply that will insure an immediate flow of water thereto as soon as the machine is put in operation so that the flaps of the first of a series of envelopes run therethrough may not pass without being supplied with a fllm of water. The improvements are further directed to the construction of the applicator itself. To these and other ends, the invention resides in certain improvements and combinations of parts, all as will be hereinafter more fully described, the novel features being pointed out in the claims at the end of this specification.
In the drawings:
Fig. 1 is a fragmentary top plan viewof the sealing and pressing and/ or envelope opening end of a machine constructed in accordance with and illustrating one embodiment of our invention;
Fig. 2 is a front view of the same fragment;
Fig. 3 is a rear view thereof;
Fig. 4 is an end view partly broken away and looking in the direction from which the envelopes are fed, and
Fig. 5 is a detail transverse section through the applicator of the moistening device showing an envelope passing therethrough;
Similar reference numerals throughout the several views indicate the same parts.
The machine of our said prior patent involves provision for a single fixed path of travel for successive envelopes; shearing knives arranged in that path for opening the envelopes by cutting off one of their longitudinal edges; a sealing device also arranged in that path for moistening and sealing the flaps of open envelopes, and a common means for throwing one such mechanism out of work at the time the other is thrown in so that the one machine may be used alternatively as either an opener or a sealer. To explain this particular embodiment of our present invention, we have shown and will describe briefly only the general arrangement and mode of operation of the patented machine.
Referring more particularly to the drawings, I indicates a rectangular base housing containing the driving mechanism composed primarily of a drive shaft 3 having a hand crank] on the exterior. A top plate 5 secured to the base casing in an appropriate manner serves as a bed for the machine for all purposes and, in connection with the back wall 6 rising therefrom, constitutes a guideway along which in the same manner envelopes are fed and conveyed for both of the beforementioned alternative purposes.
The left hand end in Figs. 1 and'2 is the feed end and the right hand end is the delivery end. The manner of feeding the envelopes whether in stacks or singly is not important here, it being sufiicient to say that connection with the gauging function of the back guide wall 6 and an edge guide 1 they are introduced One by one into the moving mechanism.
At the right hand end of the machine is a base roller 8 and a presser roller 9 yieldingly resting thereon for the purpose of causing adhesion of the gummed flaps of envelopes passed through the sealer hereinafter described as they are delivered. The base roller is driven from the main shaft 3 through pulleys I2 and I4 through a belt I3. The presser roller is carried by a yoke arm I rocking on a stud II extending forwardly from the back wall and pressed down by a spring I5 encircling the stud.
The conveying means that carries the letters along as they are slipped to it from the top of the feed pile or otherwise and beneath a gate Wall embodies, in the present instance, a rubber belt 6| round in cross section travelling over a pulley 62 on drive shaft 3 and over an idle pulley 63. Its top reach extends through a slot 64 in bed 5 and rises above the same sufficiently to make frictional carrying contact with the envelopes. It is furthermore arranged in the direction of travel at an acute angle to the back wall guide 6 so that the moving envelopes will always be urged rearwardly and the folded edges of their fiaps held in close parallel contact with the rearward guide, other means also being provided to contribute to this function though the latter are not important in particular to this invention. Suitablepresser feet (not shown) are provided for holding the envelope in contact with the conveyor belt.
Whatever envelopes are to be sealed are fed to the machine, they have their faces down and their flap sides up. Means are provided for raising the flap from the body of the envelope and passing it over a moistening device for the gum downwardly and also inclined longitudinally, as
shown in Figs. 1 and 5, in which latter figure E indicates the envelope body and F the flap as an envelope passes through the device. The applicator itself which actually applies a film of Water to the gum of the flap consist of a V-shaped rearwardly tapered channel liLhavl'nga longitudinal slot I9 in the ridge of its top edge, which portion projects into an elongated opening 29 in the top plate I'i so that the cooperativeaction will be about as indicated in Fig. 5 in forcing the envelope flap down against the applicator, the downward slant of which latter approximates the natural angle of the raised flap. 7
This applicator channel H] is formed, in the present instance, by soldering a V-shaped channelplate 2| on the top of plate l5. Its interior communicates with a small chest or fitting 22 on a vertically turned supporting flange 23 at the front of plate I6. This supporting flange terminates in a rigidly connected sleeve 24 constituting a bearing to support the whole moistening structure on a stud shaft 25 having bearings in the rear wall 6. Flanges 23 and its collar 24 are spaced from the rear on the shaft by a collar 25 and held between it and a spring 21 which normally presses these parts of the moistening struc ture downwardly toward the bed from which latter it is spaced in proper relationship by a ballbearing roller 28 on the chest 22 that rides on the bed 5 and under which wide envelopes can themselves ride if necessary. A dog 29 is fixed to shaft 25 and when the latteris partially rotated in a manner, hereinafter described this dog, taking into an opening 39 in supporting flange 23, raises the whole moistener structure to an, inclined inoperative position in which lower plate l6 will not engage the envelopes at all or interfere in any way with their passage.
This throwning outof the moistening mechanism is for the purpose of converting the machine to a letter opener, 'as before, outlined. In the path of the envelopes or letters travelling as before is a pair of rotary shearingknives or disksy3 land 32 the back plate being provided with the special guide 1 to direct a folded edge of the envelope into the bite thereof. Upper knife 3i is frictionally driven by lowerrknife 32 whichis. secured directly on drive shaft 3. For this and other purposes, upper knife 3i is mounted on a longitudinally movable-shaft34 carried in a bearing bracket 35 extending forwardly from rear wall 6. An expansion spring 36 on this shaft engaging a stop 3'1 thereon and reactingagainst thebearing bracket tends to normally hold the shearing disks in operative cutting and inter-driving relationship.
controlling lever. When it is in the position of Fig. 3, the moistening device is raised and out of work, stop 39 being operative, When it is moved to an extreme position in the other direction, in which stop 40 becomes effective, it motives a link 4| pivoted thereto at 42 and having a slotted portion 43 at its other end guided on a headed pin 44. Thus link also has a cam portion 45 and a dog 46 pivoted at 4! on the rear wallfi is caused to ride and be raised onto this cam portion, as best shown in Fig. 4. The other arm of the dog indicated at 48 thereupon presses against the forward face of shearing knife 3i and, against the tension of its spring 36, forces it and its shaft rearwardly sufliciently to disengage it from cooperation with the lower driven knife 32, and no shearing effect results upon a passing envelope.
, The latter is then in line to be treated by the moistening and sealing mechanism thereby dropped into operative position. As this mechanism is raised again and the dog 49 relieved of the cam 45, spring 36 is allowed to restore upper knife 3| to operative and driving connection with lower knife 32.
The movement of the controlling lever 38 to the right in Fig. 3 to raise and throw the moistening mechanism out of work also automatically cuts off communication with the reservoir. For this purpose, a flanged extension 51 on lever 38 pinches the rubber tube 5t between it and a pin 58 on the back plate, as indicated in the said figur Returning to the moistening mechanism, there extends rearwardly from chest 22 in parallelism with applicator l9--2l a rigid pipe connection 49 which extends through and operates in a slot 58 in the rear wall 6. It has a nipple 5i shown in Fig. 4 to which is attached a bulbous (in the present instance, rubber) sub-reservoir 52. Delivering to this sub-reservoir 52 through a nozzle 53 preferably about in line with nipple 5i and pipe 49 is a rubber tube 54 leading from a familiar form of fixed level main water reservoir 55 provided with an inverted sealed glass dome 55. Gravitational feed from this reservoir through such rubber tube or hose 54, sub-reservoir 52 and pipe 49 to chest 22 supplies the applicator with enough water to exude sufficiently but not too freely through its discharge slot iii, the flow being slowed by the vacuum creating condition in the main reservoir under a ,well known principle. However, when the moistening device is raised out of work and the applicator thereby carried to an elevated position above the water level cutting off the normal feed from. the main reservoir, the applicator and the chest 22 and the pipe 59 become quite empty and dried out particularly when during this idleness of the moistening device the machine is being run as a letter opener for a substantial period. As a result, Without the instrumentalities provided by this invention, it would take an appreciable length of time for the normal flow from the main reservoir 55 to effectively reach the applicator. Thus, the first few envelopes sent through the machine for the sealing operation would not be moistened or-moistened properly. However, with the provision of the sub reservoir 52 riding up and down with the moistening mechanism, the lowering of the latter causes the sub-reservoir to immediately spill enough water into pipe 48 and hence chest 22 and hence chamber l8 to give instant application of water at the latter point. This is due to the fact that the auxiliary or sub-reser-voir52 traps and holds within itself a sufficient amount of normal supply from reservoir 55 to at all times keep its level up to the draining level of pipe 49 and its nipple 5|. In other words, the applicator is always fed from the constant level of the trap 52 and the sudden lowering of the latter augments its normal feed at the time when instant flow is needed.
The rubber construction of auxiliary reservoir 52 and pipe 54 is preferred and is shown and described in this embodiment because the flexible and resilient inherent characteristics thereof seem to best promote the functions described. The sub-reservoir and associated parts are boxed within a suitable casing 59 secured to the rear of the machine at 60.
We claim as our invention:
1. In an envelope handling machine, the combination with a runway adapted to conduct envelopes in a certain definite path of travel, an envelope flap raising and moistening device operatively arranged in such path of travel embodying an applicator, and a water reservoir for supplying water by gravitational flow to the applicator including a conduit, of means for raising the applicator out of work and lowering it into work, means for cutting off the water supply from the reservoir in the conduit when the applicator is raised out of work, and a sub-reservoir in the conduit arranged to hold a limited body of water from the reservoir after feed from the latter has been cut oif and with the conduit connection therefrom to the applicator arranged below the applicator when the latter is in a raised position and above the applicator in lowered position, such that lowering the applicator into work will immediately supply a charge of water thereto.
2. In an envelope handling machine, the combination with a runway adapted to conduct envelopes in a certain definite path of travel, an envelope flap raising and moistening device operatively arranged in such path of travel embodying an applicator, and a water reservoir for supplying water by gravitational flow to the applicator including a flexible conduit, of means for raising the applicator out of work and lowering it into work, means for cutting off the water supply from the reservoir in the conduit when the applicator is raised out of work, and a subreservoir in the conduit arranged to hold a limited body of water from the reservoir after feed from the latter has been cut off and with the conduit connection therefrom to the applicator arranged below the applicator when the latter is in a raised position and above the applicator in lowered position, such that lowering the applicator into work will immediately supply a charge of water thereto, said sub-reservoir and the flexible conduit being raised and lowered with the applicator.
EDWARD J. DUMMER. ERNEST L. FINDER.