US 2328317 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Aug. 31, 1943. R. s. WENTWORTH DISTRIBUTING AND ASSEMBLING MACHINE Filed Oct. 8, 1941 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 Aug. 31, 1943. R. s. WENTWORTH DISTRIBUTING AND ASSEMBLING MACHINE 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Oct. 8, 1941 m 7 3 m R h a, 6 W m w Q N W M 2 w 1S. 4 n my 0 Ryw Aug. 31, 1943. R. s. WENTWORTH DISTRIBUTING AND ASSEMBLING MACHINE Flled Oct 8, 1941 Aug. 31, 1943.
R. S. WENTWORTH DISTRIBUTING AND ASSEMBLING- MACHINE Filed 001;, 8, l 1941 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 INVENTOR ROBERT S. WENTWORTH ATTOR EY Patentedj Aug. 31, 1943 3 DISTRIBUTING AND Assmmunomonrm: 1 Robert s. wem mh, Mamamneck. N. Y." Application October a, 1941, Serial No. 414,0 4 (01., am-#11) 11 Claims,
1 My invention relates to improvements to machines for distributing cards, sheets, envelopes 'or similar objects and for collating sheetsof printedrnatter and more particularly amachine and a method or control which combines the two functions of distributing and collating in one machine.
One object of my invention is tojprovide a machine in which avery largenum ber of receptacles for the objects tobe distributed or collated maybe provided in .aminimum of space. This I accomplish by providing several-rows of recep .taQles, one above the other, in tiers, to anygdesired height, from two to ten or even more.
Another. object, of the invention is to provide a machinein which a maximum of space is made available for the reception of distributed cards or sheets and as little space as possible is devoted topassages through] which the distributed material passes, on its way to the receptacles.
guiding the cards or sh'eets'through very narrow passages defined byvery slenderwires.
Anothcrobject of the invention is to provide a machine which will occupy a minimum of floor. space in relation to thenumber of deliverystae tions or receptacles served.,
,Other objects and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following description or may be learned by the operation of the ma,-
Previous machines of this general class for distributing cards, sheets or the like, require that the card sheet or other objects to be distributed have i a distinctive or characteristic mark or mutilation or indicia, such as one or more punched holes which, byreason of their specific location, on the card, permit electrical contacts to occur which serve to controlthe mechanism which carries the card to its predetermined destination, usually a receptacle. 1
In the previous machines it is the practice to provide each individual card with its own means .for controlling the action of the sorting mechanisml. ,It is one oi the characteristics of the machine of the present invention that itutilizes a separate master control card which carries the necessary indicia or perforations by means oi which the successive card's 'or-sheets are guided to their destinations. The cards or sheets may he identical and carry noindicia, punchingsor deformations. Each successive card, or sheet fed to the machine will be picked up, carried to and depositedin the receptacle for which the master control card had been provided witha corresponding indicia v-perforation. H
A machine in accordance with the present invention serves many useful purposes. For example, a statistical organization distributing periodic reports on any current subjctto a large number oi customers, each of .whichreceives certain specific itemsfwili prepare by printing, hectographing or otherwise as 'many, copies 0! the report cards as there are customers to be served. For each current su bject a master con trol card is prepared by punching holes at specific locations on the card, each location corresponding to a particular receptacle of the machine, which receptacle .is, in; turn, assigned to Z a particular customer. I. For convenience the re- This is accomplished by a novel arrangement for 5 there are customerstorecelve the particular report cards whichhave been printed, is placed ceptacles are numbered and the customers are designated bycorresponding numbers. For example,receptacle No. 156 may be for John Smith 81 Co. 3 e
The master control card, having been punched with as many holes, each properly positioned, as
in its properposition in the machine. The refportcards are then fed tothe machine, one by one, either hand or automatically. The first card is promptly delivered to the first receptacle corresponding to the first punched hole in the master control card, which may be, for example, number, three and the distrihuter carriage then 1 immediately and automatically advances to the re ep acle co re p in tothelnext din pun d o e. n th master cont l, card.
This series of successive O rations is repeated nt a ca are di's ributedto heir p oper e ep cle A te the delivery of th final card h distri u or ar iage au omatically returns to the sta ting p int. f there happens to be a sho ta ot oar s. not nou h to supp y one o each re eptacle represented by a punchedhole in the master control card, then in that case,
the traveling'distributer carria e does not auto matically return to, the starting point, thus di- 'eotin attention to the shortage of cards. r, if there-happens'to be. a surplus of cards, the
, return of the carriage before the delivery or the la t card indicates that fact; d
1 Another common and us f p ication of. the machine is for assembling or collatingthe leaves of a book .or'pricje list. or catalog composed of separate single sheets or of folded parts consisting of several pages, A simple lever moven ent as will hereinafter be madeclea'r, connects: allcontact points corresponding to all re- Figs. 2, 3, 4, and 5, the carriage is adapted to be drawn along the angle supports 5% and 51 which extend along both sides of the machine. To these two supports are attached guide angles 52 and 53 and a third guide strip 54 is attached to support The strip 5t serves the dual purpose of a guide for the carriage and as a ratchet stop. Its upper surface is provided with teeth 56a adapted to engage the pawl l' l, as will hereinafter appear.
Shoes on the base of the carriage slide freely on supports tit and 5t and between guides 53 and bodiment of the invention by way of example,
but I wish it to be understood that there may be numerous deviations therefrom Without departe ing from the spirit of the invention as defined in the appended claims.
Of the drawings Fig. Us a side view of the distributing machine minus certain parts and assemblies which are shown separatel in other figures. v
Fig. 2 is a side'view of the distributor carriage.
Fig. 3 is vertical sectionthrough the distributer carriage along the line A-A of Fig. 4.
Fig. 4 is a plan view of the distributor carriage.
Fig. 5 is an end view otthe distributer carriage partly in section along the line B-B of Fig. 3 and of the carriage track and a receptacle.
Fig. 6 is a wiring diagram and detail of the control box.
' Fig. 7 is a detail of a tier ofreceptacles viewed transversely of the machine. I I v Fig. 8 is a side-view of the tier orreceptaoles shown in Fig. 7.
Fig. 9 is a master control card.
In a1 drawings similar characters indicate the same or similar parts or objects and arrows indicate the direction of movement, travel or rotation.
The machine as shown in the exemplary embodiment of the drawings, is composed chiefly of a conveying mechanism, a traveling distributer carriage, a selective distribution control mechanism and tiers of receptacles. The particularsimple embodiment shown in the drawings is adapted to be placed with one side against a wall, from which it may be supported or to which it may be attached. or braced. A back plate It serves as the main support and carries the variousparts attached thereto. Conveying mechanism.A motor ll drives by means of the belt' I2 and pulley E3 the double cord belt conveyor M which is driven by pulleys l5 and travels successively over 'idlers it, I1, l8, l9 andiii and the grooved rollers 2i and 22, thence over guide idlers 23, 24, 25, and 26 and thence back to the driving pulleys l5. These'twocords It constitute the bottom or under pair of a three-cord conveyor, two of which are below the article carried and spread apart, and the third'constitutes the upper run located midway between the two lower runs. Between the lower and upper runs the card or other object to be conveyed is, carried. The top conveyor cord 3| is driven by the pulley 3'2 which in turn is driven by motor il through belt I 2, pulley 33, belt 344, and pulley 35. Conveyor cord 3| travels successively over guide idlers 36,18, I 9, 2B and 2 l the grooved roller 22, idlers 37, 38, 39 and 40 and thence back over its driving'pulley '32. These three cords carry the cards being distributed from the receiving point at E to the po'int of discharge from the distributer carriage at Fwhere the card enters the passage leading to its destined receptacle. 7
Traveling distributn-As shown in detail'in 5d. The carriage drawn in either direction along its supports b cable 56 as shown in Fig. 6 byv power furnished by motor 5'! operating through a combined reduction gear and reversing clutch 58 of conventional design. When the carriage G has traveled to the limit of its movement away from the feed end of the machine it strikes alc-ver which moves the rod 69 leading to the reversing clutch in gear box 58 and, by reversing the clutch effects the return of the carriage G to the feed end or starting point. There the carriage strike the 'leve'r'iil, again reversing the clutch in the gear-box ,58 but the immediate forward travel of the carriage is prevented by the engagement of the hooked lever 5'2 with the pin 63 which engagement can only be terminated by energizing magnet fifi'flto act upon the end of the hooked lever 62.; The motor 5'! and driving gear 58 are operated continuously by permitting the cabie 556 to slip on pulley 55.
On the side of the carriage G is mounted a pair of opposed magnets iii and Ida adapted to control the movement of one .end of the pivoted pawl H. the other end of which is adapted to engage the teeth Mo. on the bar 56. Within the body of of travel of objects being distributed, the passage of which cause the rotation of the disc 72 as will later appear. Attached to the contact disc '32 is a plate T l adapted to simultaneously contact the points '55 and it upon rotation of the disc [2 caused b a passing card striking the pin l3. Counterweight ll'lv andsprin g 78 return the disc '62 to its normal position.
Bracketed to the side of the carriage G is, a contact finger '59 adapted to contact segments l 0| as will appear;
Extending through the base plate of the carriage G and transversely of the carriage is a discharge slot F adapted to direct the travel of the cards or other articles being distributed to.v
the receptacles. I v
Selective distribution control mechanism- Mounted on the side of the machine at the feed end is the mechanism H shown in detail in Fig. 6. A slab iii of non-conducting material is provided with pockets 82, in number equal to the number of receptacles provided for the reception of dis-, tributed articles.
In the bottom of each po'cketBZ is a plate 83 connected to a wire 86. Within each pocket, in contact withplates 83 is a small quantity of mercury Above the slab 8! are mounted two parallel plates 38 and 87, spaced apart and moveable vertically by'rneans of the cam 88 actuated by the lever 8%, whereby the plates wand 87 may beraised orlowered. Plates fit and 8 are ll held in. their. down position unless. forced up against compression of the spring 92.;
- The upper surface oIIthe/slab 8t isadapted. to receive a: punched master control card such: as is shown. in Fig. 9. :Theholesfin this'card are so. located that they accurately center'on, .such od'the rods 90 as correspond .to certain'receptacles as will later appear; Mountedalong the guideangle 52 is a series of alternate. contact segments NH and insulating spacers I02. ,Each
master card is punchedin; asuita'blepunching machine. which forms no part of the present me vention. The location of the holes in thecard corresponds accurately with the location. of. the
pins 90 in the control box Hiwhich in turn. cor-1 respond with thereceptacles lllL. For example; a'hole at HI on the control card maybe desig nated No. 1 and would correspond with pin. numher one in control box H which in turn cones contact segment corresponds to a receptacle and a are adapted to contact the finger T9; a the carriageGtravelssalongits course. v i ReceptacZes.--Arranged below. i the track upon which the carriage G. travels are .tierslof recap t'wcles d l0, arranged in nearly vertical banks. In
.theexample chosen for illustration four recep tacles are shown in 'each tier in Fig.1 but there maybea greater ora lesser number as desired. Theglight inclination ofthe tiers of receptacles causes the cards to come tor-est in'l an inclined and compact position leaning against the back of the receptacle; One such card HI isshown rest ing ma receptacle in Fig. 3:. Ac'rossthe top; of each tier of receptacles are cross bars H2 which divide the width of the opening at the top-of each tier of receptacles intoas many equal parts as 7 and 8, terminating in holes in each of-they shelves H4 ofeach of thereceptacles except the bottom receptacle of each tier.
An' additional palrorwir e guides HS serves the top receptacle of eachltier. Anoifset l l'! at thebottom ofeach of the- Wire guides serves to deflect the falling card toward the opposite side of the receptacle,
thus providing room for the succeeding cards.
At the rear of each receptacle is a smaill'blocki lkq-whichymayz be of rubber, upon which one corneri-of the cards "rest. Across the openiront-s of receptacles of each tier and above their middle, are provided rods Hi the ends of which are. attached to cables I22 which "pass over sheaves H3 and are attached to one end of lever 124, by.
the movement of which all of the rods As the cards fall into their respective recepsponds to receptacle number one in the bank 01 receptacles. II the machine has four hundred receptacles for cards there would .be four huntdredpins in the control box H and four hundred positions. for holes on the. master 'controlfcard; whichmight conveniently be arranged in twenty rows with twenty positions? in .each row. I
For-each distribution operation a master control card is punched with. a hole at each position representing each receptacle which i to receive a card, of which there may be any number from oneto the full limit of the machine. When a control card so prepared is placed in registered position in the control box H on top of the slab 81 as shown at J in Fig. 6, and the lever 89 manipulated to lower the plates 86 and 81 lowering the pins 90 against the card, certain of the pins 9!) namely all of those which register with holes punched in the card, will pass through those holes, enter the pockets 82 and come into contact with the mercury in the: bottom: of the pockets. Thus electricalcontacts will be established. be
tween the plates 86 and 81 andv each of the circuits; 155 corresponding. to. each. hole in the punched card. In Fig. 6 the pins Hi and M3 are shown passing through holes in thespunched card'dandi in contact with: the mercury 85 in the bottom of the pockets while other pins are shown retained on the card'as they were. lowered by the operation of the lever 89; 1
Electric circuits.The wiring plamoi the elec 1 tric circuits which serve to control themovements of the mechanism while in action! except the feedingo'f the cards or other articles being distributed; is as follows; a source of electric en ergy, indicated in Fig.6 as a battery; l5i is corrnected by circuit I52t'o one pole of a contactdfl the other pole of which is mounted eir the plate 81 so that when plate 81 is elevated by lever B! the circuit is broken and when'plate" 81 new: ered contact. is established, resulting; in energiz ing magnet 64 through circuit I52 and releasing the distributing carriage from the hoole 62 taclesthey come to rest in a slightlyinclined position leaning against the inclined side of the receptacle, as shown by the card H m in Fig. 5, and with one bottomcornerresting on the block H8 andwith one edge against the rod I2! in its upper position. When the rods |2l are lowered by movement of the lever I24 to their lowest position thecards in all receptacles will tip outwardly to the position shown bycard Hlb in Fig. 5. From this position all cards are visible to. the
operatorand are easily accessible for removal from the receptacle.
Battery l55| is also connected to plate through flexible connection by circuit l54 which also connects magnet 10 with contact point-'16 and, when, by the passage of a card causes the pin 13 to rotate the disc 12" an'dbring contact plate 14 into contact with contact points l-5 and 16 the magnet 'ill becomes energized'and lifts-the rocker arm H from the tooth 54a permitting carriage G tobe advanced to its next station. Through circuit I54 current is supplied to all oi the *pins- 91! and through such of thepins-as are in contact with the mercury in the-bottom; of pockets 82 with corresponding segments I0! through their connectingwires I561 Through contact segments IBI circuit IE6 is completed when contact finger 19 passesjover its surface"; energizing magnet 'HIacausing' rocker arm 11 to engage'tooth 54a which is then in position t'o receive it. p
The operation of themachine proceedsas fol; lows; it is assumed that cards aretobe distributed to receptacles 3': 9; and" 2 F, it beingunderstocdit-hat the number of receptacles to whi'ch' 'ing the pin 63. depress the plates 86 and 81 carrying the'pins ill) be delivered.
cards maybe distributed is limited only by the number of receptacles. A master card is first punched in the positions corresponding to pins numbers 3, 9, and 2|. The punched card is placed in registry with the pins in the control box H on top of slab 8l The distributer carriage is at its starting position with the hook 62 engag- The lever 89 is manipulated to into contact with the card while the pins three,- nine and twenty-one pass through the previously punched holes and into contact with the mercury in pockets 82, thus placing these pins in electrical connection with the third, ninth and twenty-first contact blocks Iill. Motors and 51 are then started which puts in motion conveyor cords l4 and BI While cable 56 remains stationary but slipping on its drive pulley within the gear box 58. The contact having been closed, momentarily energizing magnet 64 and so releasing carriage G it moves forward under the pull of cable 56 until the contact finger it on the side of the carriage, comes in contact with the third contact bar lill. This energizes magnet liia. throws arm "(I into position to engage with tooth Ma. and stops the carriage with the chute F centered over the entrance to the passage leading to receptacle number three, The machine is now to receive and distribute cards continuously.
When the first card is fed to the conveyor at the point E it is carried speedily by the cord conveyor to the entrance to the distributer carriage G at the grooved roller 22, where the two lower cords I4 are spread apart to th sheaves 23 off to either side of, and away from' the card, permitting the card to pass between the cords I4 and to be guided by the cord SI and rollers 3! and 38 to the chute F, Fig. 3, which'is positioned directly over the opening between bars H2 corresponding to the third receptacle to which the first card is to In traveling to the chute F the card has, on its way, moved pin 13 which rotated disc 12 and brought the contact plate M against point '75 and 16 closing circuit I54, energizing magnet 70 which lifts rocker arm II from engagement with tooth 54a and-permits the carriage G to be drawn along its track until contact finger 19 moves to the next contact bar Itl which is in electrical circuit with one of the pins 90. In the example it would be pin number nine,
In the meantime, the firstcard having been de livered to the guides leading to receptacle and released, falls between and is guided by guide wires H5, two on each side of the card, and extending from the bars II2 to the edge of the shelf ll l forming the bottom of the receptacle. As the card hits the offset Ill at the lower end of the guide wires it is deflected toward the opposite side of the receptacle and comes to rest leaning against the side of the receptacle opposite the guide Wires and with one lower corner resting on the block I I8 and with its diagonally opposite upper corner against the rod I ZI. While this is taking place, a second card has been fed to the conveyor, the carriage had already advanced until stopped with the chute Fdirectly over the entrance to the passage leading to receptacle number nineby reason of the contact finger 19 having passed over the contact bar IllI corresponding to receptacle number nine causing magnet Ill to become energized throwing arm II into engagement with a tooth 54a. I
As this second card, in passing through the carriage, rotated the contact disc 12 by striking and deflecting the pin 73 the same chain of events has taken place and while the second card is falling into receptacle number nine, the carriage is moving forward to the chute leading to receptacle twenty-one and is ready to receive the third card and guide it to its destination. Thus each card, as it passes through the carriage G, sets up a train of events that cause the carriage to advanceiand to stop at the entrance to next receptacle corresponding to which there is a hole punched in the master control card then in .the control box. When the last card has been delivered, the last stop has been made, and there are no more contact bars Ifil in circuit to cause the carriage to stop, it will continue to travel until itmoves lever 59 and so reverses the clutch in the gear box 58 and causes the carriage to return to its starting point where, by moving the lever 6| it will again reverse the clutch but will be prevented from moving by the automatic engagement of the hook 62 with the pin 63.
All cards having been distributed, the lever I24 is manipulated to lower the rods I 2| from the upper to the lower part of the receptacles. Whereupon all of the cards in all of the receptacles will tilt forward from the position of the card Illa, Fig. 5, to the position of card I I lb, in which position the upper corner of all cards project beyond the front of the receptacles and become plainly visible to the operator who then does not have to search all of the four hundred receptacles to ascertain which of them contain cards.
Having completed the distribution and removal of the cards the master control card is removed and another substituted for the next group of cards to be distributed.
When used for assembling the pages of a book or the like, no master controlcard is required. By manipulation of the lever 89 all of the pins 90 are lowered into the pockets 82 and into contact with the mercury 85 therein. This places all of the contact bars l0i in circuit so that the carriage G will stop at each receptacle in succession and one sheet will be delivered to each of them.
Having described my invention'and disclosed one of the preferred forms in which it may be put into practice by one skilled in the art to which it pertains, I now state what I believe to be new and novel and for which I praythat Letters Patent be granted.
I claim 7 l. A distributing machine comprising, in combination, a conveying means adapted to receive objects to be distributed, to; move them from a receiving station to a plurality of points of release from said conveying means, means movable over all of said points of release for releasing said objects from said conveying means, control means, external of the articles distributed, adapted to selectively determine the points of release of the articles from the conveying means, a plurality of receptacles disposed in a plurality of nearly vertical tiers, each tier comprising a plurality of receptacles and having guided passages leading from the points of release along one side of said tiers of receptacles to each of the receptacles in the tier, means governed by said control means for selectively and successively registering said points of release from said conveying means with the entrance to the selected guided passages to such of the receptacles as have been set up in the said control means. a
2. In a distributing machine, the combination of a conveying means adapted to receive and to convey a succession of similar articles from a means separatetrom the articles distributed adapted to automatically pre-select the particular station to which each of said articles is to be deg livered by said conveying means. 1 a
3. In .a'distributing machine,the Combination of a conveying meansadapted to receive and to conveyasuccession ofsimilar articles from a source of supply and to deliver them to'a bank of receptacles comprising a plurality of nearly vertical tiers of receptacles, each tier being composed of a plurality of receptacles, the receptacles of each tier having a commonmember forming one side of thetier, the bottom of eachreceptacle pointaboveithe middleof the horizontal rows of I receptacles and tobe lowered to a point below the middle of the said rows of,receptacles,a plurality of passages, equal innumber to the number of receptacles ineachtier, defined by bars extending across the top of, the uppermost receptacle of each tierfland by a plurality-of yieldingguides, each attached to said bars, each extending along one side of the tier of receptaclestothabottom shelf ofthe receptacle it serves and each provided at its lower end with; an offset toward, the opposite side of the receptacle it serves, means separate as have been previously set up in said control control means, external of thearticles distributed, adapted to selectivelydetermine theplurality of points of release of the articles from the conveying means and to stop and start said releasing means at said points of release, said control means including a master control card having apertures therethrough, adapted to be positioned in registry with movable electrical contact members, whereby selective electrical control over the movement otsaid conveying meansis established by such of said'contact members as, by reason of their registry with said apertures, are in position to make contacts through them, a plurality of receptacles disposed in a plurality of nearly vertical tiers, each tier comprising a plurality of receptacles and having guided passages leading from the points of release along oneside of each tier of receptacles to each of the receptacles in the'tier, means governed by said control means, for selectively and successively registering said points of release from said conveying means with the entranceto the selected guided passages to SuChOf the receptacles ,6. In a, distributingmachine, the combination of a plurality of nearly vertical tiers of receptacles, each tiercomprising a plurality ofreceptacles, a plurality of guided passages, equal innumber to the totalnumber of receptacles and each having equally spaced entrance open ings in a plane substantially horizontal, extend= ing above, thetiers of receptacles, conveying from the articles distributed, adapted to automatically select the-stations to, which said er-,
tlcles are deliveredby said conveying means.
A distributing machine comprising, income bination, a conveying means adapted to receive articles tobe distributedyto move them' from a receiving' station' to eachof apluralityofpoints oi release from said conveying means,means.to release said articles from said conveying means, control means, external of the articles distributed, adapted to selectively determineithe plurality of points ofrelease of the articlesirom the convey,-
ing means and tostop and start said releasing means at said-pointofrelease, said control means including a master control card having apertures therethrough, adapted to be positioned in registry with movable electrical contact members where= bill-Selective electrical control over the movement of said, conveying means isestablished by such of said contact members as, by reasonof their registry with said apertures, are in position, to make cont acts through them, a plurality of receptacles disposed in a plurality of nearly vertical tiers; each tier, comprising a plurality of receptacles and having guided passages leading from the points of .releasealong oneside o fsaid tiers of receptaclesto each of the receptacles in the tier, means governed by saidtcontrol means for-selectively and successively registering said pointsof release fromsaid conveying means with the entrance to i the selected guided passages leading to such of the receptacles as have been set trolmeanst up in said con- 5. A distributing machine comprising in com-y bination, a conveying meansadapted to receive articles to be distributed, to move them from a release said articles from said conveying means,
means positioned over said passages adapted to receive a succession of identical articles from a source of supplyand to convey said articles from saidsource to a conveyor discharge means adapted to discharge said articles into said guidwhich includesa, plurality of electrical contact bars interspaced with insulating bars, said con tact bars being equal in number to the number r of stations at which it is desired to stop the said conveyor discharge means,iand eachpositioned in uniform relation with said stations, a contact member supported by, and moveable with, said conveyor discharge means and adapted to be therethrough adapted to be positionedin regis it 7. In a distributing machine, the combination of a plurality, of nearly vertical tiers of recep tacles, each tier comprising a plurality of receptacles, a pluralityof nearly vertical guided passages, equal in number to the totalnuniber of receptacles and each having equally spaced entrance openings inua single plane substantially horizontal, extending above the tiers of receptacles, conveying means positioned over said passages adapted to receive a succession of identicalarticles from a source of supply and to convey saidarticles from said source, a conveyor discharge means adapted to discharge said articles into said guided passages, and control means for selectively determining the passages articles to which said, conveyor discharges said articles, means within each of said receptacles adapted to cause the articles deposited therein to incline toward the front of the receptacle, a movable bar positioned across the front of said receptacles and adapted to confine the articles within said receptacles, means for repositioning said bars to permit said articles to tilt forward and project beyond the front of said receptacles, said control means including a master control card having apertures therethrough adapted to be positioned in registry with selective contact'means including a plurality of collectively and individually movable electrical contact members in symmetrical arrangement positioned in registry with an equal number of stationary electrical contacts and adapted to be brought into contact either collectively or selectively by the interposition of said master control card between said stationary and said moveable contact members, and means for controlling the movement of said conveyor discharge means including a plurality of electrical contact bars disposed along the path of travel of said conveyor discharge means and .interspaced with insulating bars, said contact bars being equal in number to the stations at which it is desired to stop the said conveyor discharge means, and each positioned in uniform relation with said stations, a contact member supported by, and moveable with, said conveyor discharge means and adapted to be moved successively into and out of contact with said bars by the movement of said conveyor discharge means. i
8. A distributing machine characterized by having a conveyor comprising a plurality of flexible-strands adapted to be disposed on opposite sides of and in contact with the articles distributed, traveling means for discharging from the conveyor the articles distributed, including means for spreading the strands in contact with the lower side of the said articles to a distance apart greater than the corresponding dimension of the, articles distributed, permitting said to pass between the spread-apart strands, said traveling conveyor discharge being propelled from a source of power which delivers its energy through driving pulleys over which a belt is permitted to slip when the traveling conveyor discharge is not in motion, means for arresting the forward motion of the conveyor discharge means including a toothed rack positioned along the path of travel of the conveyor discharge means, a pivoted pawl carried by said conveyor discharge means adapted to be engaged with the teeth on said rack, said teeth being accurately positioned withreference to, and of equal number to, the stations'atwhich it is desired to stop said conveyor discharge means, means for causing said pawl to engage teeth on said rack as the conveyor discharge means reaches each station at which an article is discharged from said conveyor,
9. A distributing machine distinguished by a pluralit of tiers of receptacles for the articles distributed, each tier comprising a plurality of receptacles, guiding means adapted to direct the travel of the articles from the point of entry at the top of each tier to each of the receptacles comprising the tier, said guiding means comprising spaced-apart bars across the top of the up serves asa guide, means within each receptacle adapted to cause the articles deposited therein to incline toward the front of said receptacle, a moveable bar positioned across the front of said receptacles and adapted to confine the articles within said receptacles, means for repositioning said bars to permit said articles to tilt forward and project beyond the front of said receptacles, and conveying means adapted to convey articles selectively to said guiding means.
10. In a distributing machine, the combination ofa conveying means adapted to receive and to convey successive similar articles from a source of supply and to deliver them to a plurality of discharge stations, means separate from and unrelated to, the articles distributed, adapted to automatically control the stations to which said articles are delivered by said conveying means, said conveyor comprising a plurality of flexible strands disposed on opposite sides of, and in contact with, the articles distributed, means for discharging from the conveyor the articles distributed, including means for spreading the strands in contact with the lower side of the said articles to a distance apart greater than the corresponding dimension of the articles distributed, permitting said articles to pass between said spread-apart strands.
11. In a distributing machine, the combination of a plurality of nearly vertical tiers of receptacles, each tier comprising a plurality of receptacles, a, plurality ofguidedpassages, equal in number to the total number of receptacles and each having equally spaced entrance openings in a single plane substantially horizontal, conveying means positioned above the tiers of receptacles, adapted to receive a succession of identical articles from a source of supply of said articles and to convey said articles'from said source, a conveyor discharge means adapted to travel over said tiers of receptacles and. to discharge said articlessuccessively in a downward direction into said guided passages, and control means, which is separate from the articles distributed, adapted to selectively predetermine the passages to which said conveyor discharges said articles, means for arresting the forward movement of said traveling conveyor discharge means, including a toothed rack positioned along the path of travel of the conveyor discharge means, a pivoted pawl carried by said conveyor discharge means, said pawl being adapted to be engaged with the teeth of said rack, said teeth being equal in number of guided passages at which it is desired to stop said conveyor discharge means and uniformly positioned'with reference thereto,
means for causing said pawl to engage successive teeth on said rack as the conveyor discharge means reaches each station at which an article is to be discharged from said conveyor, means, located at either end of its travel, actuated by the movement of the conveyor discharge means, for reversing the direction of travel, whereby said conveyor discharge means is returned to its starting position.
ROBERT S. WENTWORTH.