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Publication numberUS2490071 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 6, 1949
Filing dateJun 28, 1947
Priority dateJun 28, 1947
Publication numberUS 2490071 A, US 2490071A, US-A-2490071, US2490071 A, US2490071A
InventorsMackechnie Jr James G
Original AssigneeMackechnie Jr James G
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Laundry sorting apparatus
US 2490071 A
Abstract  available in
Images(8)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 6, 1949 J. G. MACKECHNIE, JR

LAUNDRY SORTING APPARATUS Filed Juhe 28, 1947 8 Sheets-Sheet l ATTORNEYS Dec. 6, 1949 J. G. MACKECHNIE, JR

LAUNDRY SORTING APPARATUS 8 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed June 28, 1947 BY 8 M ATTORNEYS Dec. 6, "1949 J. G. MACKECHNIE, JR

LAUNDRY SORTING APPARATUS 8 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed June 28, 1947 INVENTOR wk oonwooooooo 0000000000 0000000000 oooooooooo &\

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QTE w ATTORNEYS Dec. 6, 1949 J. G. MACKECHNIE, JR 2,490,071

LAUNDRY SOR TING APPARATUS Filed June 28, 1 47 a Sheets-Sheet 4 BY @M M ATTORNEYS Dec. 6, 1949 u. cs. MACKECHNIE, JR 2,490,071

v LAUNDRY SORTING APPARATUS Filed June 28, 1947 8 Sheets-Sheet 5 INVENTOR Julia 6? fl hcxrzmw/cqi ATTORNEYS J. G. MACKECHNIE, JR 2,490,071

LAUNDRY SOR'IING APPARATUS Dec. 6, 1949 INVENTOR 4144/54 6 MCKFl'WW/E, J72

BY @MM ATTORNEYS Dec. 6, 1949 J. G. MACKECHNIE, JR 2,490,071

LAUNDRY SORTING APPARATUS Filed June 28, 1947 8 Shets-Sheet 7 ATTORNEYS Dec. 6, 1949 J. G. MACKECHNIE, JR 2,490,071

LAUNDRY SORTING APPARATUS Filed June 28. 1947 8 Sheets-Sheet 8 rlnrmlnmumlnls INVENTOR (72mm GYMcmmmwgJ:

BY @JM ATTORNEYS tray dumping means;

Patented Dec. 6, 1949 UNITED STATES ATENT OFFICE 12 Claims.

1 This invention relates to a selectively controlled sorting apparatus. An-object of the invention is to provide a ma chine which will be adapted to sort articles, as

articles of clothing to be handled by a laundry for return to the proper owner.

A further object is to provide automatic means for conveying articles to preselected collecting bins where the various items of one owner are to be dumped.

Another object is to provide a machine operable by one or two persons who may deposit separate articles at a loading station or stations for distribution to a series of preselected dispensing stations.

Still another object is to provide automatic, electrically controlled, pneumatic means for the operation of dispensing an article from the carrying apparatus, the automatic controls being preset at the time an article is placed on the conveying mechanism.

These and other specific advantages will be appreciated by a consideration of the following detailed description of an embodiment of my invention in connection with the accompanying,

drawings in which:

Fig. 1 is a top plan view with some parts omitted to show the general layout of the machine;

Fig. 2 is a partial side view at one end of the machine with carrier means omitted for clarity, and taken on line 22 of Fig. l to show bin structure and carrier advancing mechanism;

3 is a detailedtop plan view of the end portion shown in Fig. 2 to show carrier supporting structure and other operative mechanism;

Fig. 8 is adiagrammatic view of the pneumatic circuit provided for the carrier travel means and Fig. 9 is a wiring diagram showing the electric circuits for the presettable push button switch mechanisms; f

Fig. 10 is a sectional view of a solenoid valve to provide a tray dumping operation;

Fig. 11 is a sectional View of a timer used in connection with the pneumatic circuit;

Fig. 1 2is a sectional View of a diaphragm opis the same for each side of the machine.

2 erated pneumatically and in connection with one of the tray positioning elements;

Fig. 13 is a sectional view of plunger mechanism for withdrawing rollers and. controlled by the mechanism shown by Fig. 10;

Fig. 14 is a sectional view of a tray dumping means;

Fig. 15 is a side elevation of a push button mechanism with parts broken away; and

Fig. 16 is a section on line l6-l6 of Fig. 15.

Conveyor travel The sorting apparatus (Fig. 1) comprises a series of carriers I supported in successive order for longitudinal travel in opposite directions on two parallel adjacent conveyor paths. The starting locations for the two paths are indicated generally by numerals 2 and 3 respectively, and the end locations of these paths generally by 2' and 3. As will be later described, the carriers are conveyed from their end locations crosswise of the machine to the starting locations of the adjacent conveyor path. Thus each carrier is conveyed in a complete circuit, having a rectangular counterclockwise travel, as shown.

The adjacent conveyor paths are defined by parallel side tables 4 and 5 and intermediate channel supports 6 and I, the latter terminating adjacent the inner edge of each of the end and starting locations and being joined by end bars 8 and 9 to end supports Ill and II respectively. The bars 8 and 9 are set in a lower plane than supports 5 and l for crosswise transfer of carriers i. Side tables 4 and 5, intermediate supports 8 and 9, and end supports Ill and It are mounted on legs as at H (Fig. 2). Immediately below the carriers are located, on horizontal sup.- porting bars I3 fixed between legs 12, a series of clothes bins M into which the contents placed on the carriers I may be dumped, as will be later described. Short legs I5 may be provided for .the support of the bins on bars l3, it being undercarriers l, as in Fig. 1 on each side of the ma chine, is accomplished by pneumatically operated means best shown by Fig. 2. The mechanism for a step by step advance of the carriers Adjacent the starting location 2 (Fig. 2) is a pusher rod is pivoted on a supporting bar l3 as at I! and projecting at its upper end through a slot 18 in table 4. The upper end of pusher i6 is normally held in rearward position (to the left as in Fig. 2) by a spring I!) fixed to the lower end of the pusher and to an adjacent leg l5. Between the spring attachment and pivot I! a piston rod 253 is attached to pusher It to pivot the upper end of the pusher in a forward direction in its slot. The pivoted position is shown in dotted line. Piston 2i and rod are pneumatically operated as will be described by depressing foot pedal 22.

A carrier is advanced one step by each pivoting operation of pusher 16. On the outer edge of a carrier are provided two spring held dogs -23 (Fig. 1) which are successively broughtinto'contact with pusher 16. On each forward movement of the pusher, the adjacent dog 23-is pushed forward and with it the carrier. The pusher is then returned rearwardly by spring [9 past the next dog 23 upon release of the foot pedal causing the piston rod to be retracted.

It willbe noted thatas-each carriersis pushed directly by pusher lithe carriers infront of that -carrier arealso moved forwardly. A :carrier at :the endof theline is thus moved intoanzenol location 2 or 3. ;'As the car-riersareachthe:end locations the starting locations .2 and 13 are vacated and ready to receive carriers from the end zones of the adjacent conveyor path.

The-mechanismffortransferring carriers crosswise, shown in-top plan by Fig. 1 and on enlarged scale in side elevation by Fig. '7, comprises a motor driven endless belt arrangement. On a :bracket support 25, fixed as between legs l2 (which are preferably in theform of angle irons),

-is mounted a motor 26 driving by belt 2'! the The latter is pulley drive indicated by 28. .mounted on-a bracket 29 to end support It. The carrier transfer belt 30 connects pulleydrive 28 and a pulley :3! mounted on a bracket 33 also :fixed onsupnort ID adjacent its oppositeeend-in .';Fig. 7, thesidetable5. Belt 38 isprovidedwith spaced projecting pins '32.

:As showndn the detail view of Fig. A and in vzFig. 7 the leading inside corner .of carrier 1 is provided witha'projectiondfl which :willllie in the path of the pinst2 :on belt lit-when the car- :rier-ismoved completely into end zone 2' or 3'. .Motor125 is .adapted for the continuous driving .ofibelt 30. Aswillbe seen in Fig. '7, a pin '32 will thus contactprojection 5Q and'move the carrier crosswise into the starting locationof the adjacent conveyor path. Fig. 7.sh0Ws'the cross over operation for the righthand end (as in Fig. 1-) of the machine. For the similarhandling of the :cross over at the other end of the machine a projection 46' '(Fig. 4') at the opposite corner of the carrier is provided.

Carrier supporting and tray dumping .means during itscrosswise travel from the end location of thead-jacent conveyor path.

- In its starting position and moving therefrom for longitudinal travel the carrier is supported by rollers 53 attachedto a depending vertical flanged portion t of side table 4, and-oppositely located double rollers 55 fixed. to the facing side of end bar 9.

4 As the carrier is moved forwardly between side table 4 and its complementary intermediate channel support I it is supported by the rollers 53 on flange portion 4 and on the opposite side along 5 channel support I by double rollers 5! in line with rollers 55. Rollers 51 are fixed to a depending vertical flanged portion 1 of support 1.

Rollers 51, as constructed, permit retraction of their outer roller members 58 against springs 59, 105mountedon the :shanks between inner members 60 and members '58. The meansfor accomplishing retraction will be later described, the purpose for doing so will now be explained.

. .It' 'will'be noted in Fig. 3 that each carrier I 15 is provided with a rectangular opening in "which-an article tray 61 is pivotally hinged at \oppositesides-aset 66. Tray 61 is adapted for pivotal turning above any one of the bins [4 so -as todump an article carried on the tray by force of gravity into a preselected bin.

, T'Iray-Gfl as. shown by Fig. '5 is 1 adapted? for tilting to slide an article ofi the tray. The tilting is -a;ccomplisl1ecl by meansaofapneumatically operated. plunger :10 sliding .in :cylinder 1 3 on .bracket 1:4: fixed .tofiangexd' (Figs. 3randf5) The plunger in contacts the underside "ofitheiforward edge of :a tray, .overbalancing the :same. At the same time the outerroller members 58 are retracted thereby permitting the-lowering of the rearward edge of the tray, the tray pivoting at 66. Plunger "l0 merely commencesthe 'overbalancing of the tray. An upstanding :post H having a weighted top '12 causes the further pivoting 'of the tray to the 'dotted line position of Fig. 5. Here the depending edge portion of the tray contacts an electrical circuit breakerswitch 15 whichpermits the outer :memb'ersISB o'f the retracting rollers to be spring pressed to normal position. This opera- --tion will be later'described.

:In Fig. ;3 it *will be noted thata fixed double roller 76 is provided in the flanged portion 4 of rside table' l. When the tray 6'l is in position for :pivoting, roller Hi is under the forward half of -thetray.- '-When the carrier is advanced in the gsistepby steptravel roller is adaptedto contact the depending rear portion of the tilted tray.

LContact of roller -76 will cause the tray to be turned-'back-intohorizontal position to lie in the plane of its carrier. .30 :Positionin'g elements are also provided at vari- -ous locations on the machine in the path of carrier travel. 'Theseelements are adapted to maintain correct alignment and the relative position 'o'i the carriers during the step'by step conveyance.

011c such element-is *a spring "pressed cam 80 (Fig. 3) attached to end support H for guiding the outer edge of a-carrier I as it enters starting location! duringt-ransversetravel from end location"3. The beveled end 81 causes depression of 60 cam 80 and exerts pressure on the carrier edge "until it is positioned in starting location 2.

Beveled end B l then slidesfinto a notch 82 cut in the rear corner of the carrier. This prevents any backward motion pr sliding when the optaierat'or of the machine places an article on the carrier. A corresponding notch '83 is cut in the diagonally opposite corner of the carrier for the same purpose when the latter is at the other end of the machine and entering starting location 3.

Notches 82 and 83 serve a further purpose in connection with stop checks 85 (Fig. 1) which are located adjacent the outside edges of the carrier path immediately before end locations 2' X and 3. Checks 85 are operated pneumatically in 75'timed relation as will be described, and project :conduits I85 and I06.

ally opposite side of the apparatus. of inlet I35 is mechanism identical to that to be From inlet I85 air enters chamber into notches 82 or 83 or into intermediate notches 8'! cut centrally on opposite sides of the carrier. Since each step in the travel of the carriers moves -each carrier one half the distance of its width,

checks 85 are alternately inserted in notches 32 or 83 and 81. The dislocation by forward movement of any carriers in the parallel lines is thus prevented.

The carriers are further provided with pins 90 adjacent each side thereof. Pins 90 (which also serve as anchor means for the attachment of the spring members on dogs 23) project above the surface of a carrier and cooperate with spring pressed stop cams 32 to insure against chance dislocation by rearward movement. Cams 92 hold the rearmost carrier (Fig. 1) against back sliding as it is moved from starting location 2 or -3. The cams are provided with beveled edges to permit the free passage of the pins forwardly as the carriers are advanced by pusher I3.

Pneumatic mechanism How the pneumatic means of the machine is adapted for imparting travel to the carriers by pusher It; for dumping the tray contents into a -bin by tilting through plunger I3; and for operating the stop check 85 all in timed relation is shown by the diagram of Fig. 8. -Compressed air is supplied from a suitable source through a pipe I3I). Through connector pipe IIlI and T connection I32 air under pressure enters valve I03 whenever foot pedal 22 is' depressed. Outlet I04 leads to piston cylinder inlet Conduit I33 supplies a complementary pusher mechanism on the diagon- At the end now described.

Air through inlet I95 is supplied to timing -mechanism It! and thence to cylinder I68 in which is located piston 2! (Fig. 2) for operation of pusher I6.

Said timing mechanism It! is shown by Fig. 11. I33 where pressure is allowed to build up to unseat spring pressed member I It. The rate at'which pressure .may be increased against member IE3 is predetermined by the adjustment of threaded stem l I2 extending into a bleed hole passage II3 in communication with chamber I89 through a port I l4. The outlet of passage H3 bypasses'the member II6 into outlet chamber N6 of the timer. It will be obvious that adjustment of the timer stem I I2 regulates the delayed action of air pressure building up in piston chamber I38 (Fig. 2) suificiently to move pusher I6 against the spring is. Pusher I6 is returned by spring I9 when air from cham- ;ber I08 isexhausted through a port I33 of valve I33. Exhaust port 533 is opened on removal of pressure from spring held foot pedal 22.

The delayed operation of piston rod is permits retraction of stop' check 85 from the path of the carriers I, that is, its withdrawal from a notch 82 or 81 before the advancement of the carriers by :the pusher.

It will be noted "that inlet pipe IE5 is joined by a T connection I and pipe IZI to a chamber "I22 having a flexible diaphragm therein movable under pressure of air to extend a release pin i225 of valve I 26. Valve I26 is located in a branch IZ'I leading from a T connection I28 of the supply pipe I83. Air pressure is released through valve I26 when pin I25 is actuated. Pressure then is established in conduit I30 leading to a connector I3I, which distributes air pressure through pipes 6 I32 and I33 to the pneumatic mechanism for operating the stop check 85. A conduit I35 leads from the connector I3I to similar pneumatic mechanism for the complementarystop check 85.

Pipe I32 leads to a diaphragm chamber I36 similar to chamber I22 and acting to extend pin I38. Extension of pin I38 pivots a spring held lever I40 which swings check 83 out of a notch 82, 83 or 81. This permits the movement forward of the carriers by pusher I6 and is the reason for having the timed delay for operation of said "pusher. Since it is desirable to have the check 85 retracted until such time as the notch 82 or 8'! has passed bythe check position and yet to have said check be released against the side of the carrier for stopping the carriers at the next station, a timing release mechanism is provided. The means for releasing said check 35 is pneumatically operated through mechanism connected to pipe I33. Pipe I33 leads to a timing mechanism I4I similar to timer Iii'i before described in connection with the piston chamber inlet I08 and shown in Fig. 11. To insure enough time for building up the requisite amount of pressure in piston chamber I38 to move the carriers, further delay in releasing check 83 is provided at the outlet of timer MI by an enlarged chamber I32. Accordingly, when check 85 can be released pressure in chamber I42 has increased to the point at which it actuates a diaphragm in chamber I43 thereby through pin I46 pivoting a lever I4! to depress a valve release pin I53 of valve I5I. Air is released to the atmosphere through an outlet I55 of valve I5I. It is the release of air supplied by inlet pipe I32, an inlet 56 of valve I5I being joined by a T connection to said pipe I32.

The stop check operating mechanism as just described is contained in a casing indicated by numeral I and is shown in association with check 85 in position on the machine as in Fig. 1.

Fig. 12 shows the structure of the diaphragm chamber I36 which is similar to the other diaphragm chambers mentioned. The air enters an inlet as I32, moving a flexible diaphragm as I37, to actuate the pin I33.

Means for dumping the tray contents into a bin I4 is pneumatically operated by the system shown connected by pipe I which leads oli the connector pipe IIJI and through T connection I02. Pipe I65 affords passage of air under pressure to a distributor pipe I61 from which a series of branch pipes I'Ill are tapped, one for each tray dumping station. In each case pipe I'I'Il leads to a solenoid operated valve I'II which is shown in I detail by Fig. 10. It will be noted that all branch pipes I'IB are continually supplied with air pressure. On energizing solenoid I15, as will be later described, the plunger I76 is actuated against spring ill to depress an actuating stem I18 for an exhaust valve I79 and an inlet valve I80. The latter are connected by a link I83, said exhaust valve I'lS closing oil" an exhaust port I35, and the inlet valve opening an inlet port I82 leading to an outlet I83. Outlet I33 immediately discharges air into piston chamber I84 operating the retractable double rollers 51. Air also enters a piston chamber I3 operating the plunger II! to tilt a carrier'tray Ii! as previously described. These devices are shown in Figs. 13 and .4.

Air from the two chambers I35 and I3 is exhausted by deenergizing the solenoid which permits the seating of inlet valve I83 by a valve spring I85 and the unseating of exhaust valve I19 to release pressure through exhaust port I8I'.

The solenoid is deenergized by interruption of the side tables 4 and 5.

electric circuit when the lower edge of the tray contacts circuit breaker 15 as previously mentioned.

Presettable electric controls An electric circuit controlling means governing solenoids I15 and thus the operating means at each bin to dump an article from the tray at said bins is shown by the wiring diagram of Fig. 9.

corresponding partial circuits associated with each carrier. Each of the partial circuits includes a presettable push button switch closing mechanism, one for each carrier and one for .each bin.

The push button switch closing mechanisms for the bins are indicated in Fig. 1 by the numeral I99. They are mounted in rows of boxes along carriers I by numeral I9I. Each push button box I99 for the bins has twenty push buttons I92 (Fig. 3) and each box I9I for the carrier has Thus the aptwenty push buttons I93 (Fig. 4). paratus is adapted for handling articles for 100 bins. The number of switches of course can be increased or decreased to accommodate the number of sorting bins desired in any particular apparatus.

Both push button box mechanisms are presettable. Each bin box mechanism is set prior to operation of the apparatus to correspond to the number assigned as a laundry mark, for example, to a particular customer. riers in a startinglocation for the automatic sort- .ing of articles, each individual carrier box mechanism is set to correspond with the mark on the clothing and the mark previously assigned to a particular bin for collecting that customers articles. Partially completed electric circuits are thus established to be energized by the closing of the circuits when the carrier arrives at the preselected bin.

Switch means operable to close an electric cir .cuit for dumping articles from the carrier tray channel support 1 and on side table 5 (see Fig. l)

The joining of these contacts will be established .as step by step travel is imparted to the carriers. Each of the distributor contacts are separated by insulation as at I91, each of the fingers as by insulation at I98 (Fig. 9).

As shown by Fig. 9, power is supplied to each switch box by a suitable source through a transformer I99. A line 209 connects with the partial circuits for each bin. A line 2M is adapted to complete a circuit when the corresponding partial circuit of the carrier mechanism is connected therewith.

Line 209 connects with said push button switches !92 through a breaker switch 15, awire 292, a solenoid 293, and connecting line 204 to one terminal of the push button switches in a row designated as 295. Row 295 represents the unit values in the system. Line 209 is similarly connected through breaker switch 15. Wire 292, a solenoid 206, and a connecting line 291 to one terminal of the push button switches in a row designated as .298. Row 298 represents the decimal values in the system. The other switch terminals-in each case are connected by lines 299 to the series of finger contacts I96.

One circuit controlling means is made up i by partial circuits associated with each bin and Corresponding push button n mechanisms for the carriers I are indicated on When loading the car- A continuation of wire 202 for each partial bin circuit is provided by a connector wire 2I0 having two switches 2H and 2I2 operated by the solenoids 296 and 293 respectively. Wire 2) hrough the switches is connected to a terminal of solenoid I which operates pneumatic valve I1I to dump the tray contents. The other terminal of solenoid I15 is connected to line I, completing the presettable circuits for each bin.

Line 2% is adapted for connection with a carrier circuit through line contacts 2I5 and 2I8 which are in turn connected to terminals of the carrier push button switches. Contact 2I5 connects one terminal of the switches, as row 2I8 representing the decimal values. Contact 2I6 connects one terminal of the. switches, as row 2I9 representing the unit values. The other terminals of said switches in each case are connected by lines 220 to distributor contacts I95.

In operation the bin push buttons are depressed for a particular number between 00 and 99. As the carrier tray is loaded with an article bearing the particular number, the carrier button are depressed with the corresponding number. Switches 2I I and 2 I 2 are open and remain so until solenoids 29S and 293 are energized. This occurs when the partial circuit, set up in the bin switch box mechanism is completed through the distributors and finger contacts by a circuit corresponding to it in the carrier switch box.

Referring to the position shown by Fig. 9, both circuits are set for number 29. It will be seen that the connection of corresponding partial circuits is here established by contacts I95 and I 96. Solenoids 203 and 296 are energized thus closing switches H2 and 2H. Solenoid I15 is thus energized and, as has been noted, will operate the tray dumping means.

As previously described, the tilting of carrier tray 51 contacts breaker switch 15. This will then deenergize solenoids 203 and 256 opening switches 2H and 2I2 to leave the mechanism ready for a succeeding appropriate completion of a circuit by the carrier distributor contacts Push button mechanism Push button switch mechanism for the presettable partial circuits is shown in the detail views of Figs. 15 and 16. A push button #92 is mounted on a stem 225 slidable in box cover 226. Stem 225 is provided with a flat plate 221 having 2. depending extension 228 which is slidable in bottom frame plate 229. On extension 228 is mounted a spring 230 normally urging the plate 221 upwardly to raised position.

Centrally of the plates 221 are provided aligned rectangular openings 235 (Fig. 16). Passing through each opening 235 is a longitudinal cam plate 231 mounted on end supports as at 238. Cam 231 lies midway between bottom frame plate 229 and cover 226 and is spring pressed to the right, as shown by Fig. 15, by a spring 239 on a stud extension between a collar 240 and suppor 238.

Adjacent each stem plate 221 on cam 231 are provided generally rectangular recessed portions 24I having cam hooks 242 lying in the downward paths of the plates. A hook 242 is adapted to move earn 231 against spring 299 when the push 70 button is depressed. Immediately above an opening 235 in plate 221 and spaced therefrom is a catch opening 245 (Fig. 16) to receive the hook 242 of the cam. A stem 225 is thus held in depressed position whenever the cam is spring J5 pressed to the right as in Fig. 15.

It will be understood from the above that when one of the buttons of the row shown in Fig. is depressed, it will remain so until such time as another button is depressed in a similar manner. By depressing a second button the plate 221 pushes cam 231 to the left releasing the hook 242 associated with a previously depressed button from its catch 245 so as to permit spring 228 to raise that button to normal position. Return of cam 231 to the right is permitted by the hook 242 projecting into the catch 245 of the second stem plate, whereby the second button is held in depressed condition until similarly released.

The switch connection associated with each button comprises a U-shaped switch 250 attached to an insulating piece 25I fixed on the edge of stem plate 221. As shown by Fig. 16 an arm of the switch 250 is in contact with a terminal 252 and thus connected with a terminal wire 253. It will be seen that depression of the push button of Fig. 16 will cause the switch 250 to connect terminal 252 with a second terminal 256 by sliding the switch downwardly. Terminal 256 is connected in the circuit by a terminal wire 251. Said terminals and terminal wires are mounted as shown on an insulating plate 258 supported in the box.

It will be noted in Fig. 1 that the distributor contacts I95 in the lower path of travel are mounted on the forward part of the carrier and on the upper or return path of travel in a rearward position with respect to said carrier travel. Because of the change in relative positioning it will be seen that the finger contacts I95 are mounted so that the carrier will be entirely clear of the starting locations 2 and 3 before any contact with the distributor contacts I95 is had. In order to clear said locations each carrier will be advanced two steps prior to establishing said contact. Thereafter contact will be established at every step until a carrier enters the end locations 2 and 3.

Operation In the operation of the sorting apparatus an attendant may have in one large batch a collection of laundered items to be sorted among as many as one hundred customers. Each article has been marked with a number identifying the owner. Accordingly, the push button mechanism for each bin is operated to give it an identifying number corresponding to the laundry mark on the items of laundry to go into that bin. No circuits are completed by this operation. Partial circuits only are set up for the finger contacts I96 to be ready for the closing of a circuit.

The machine then is started in operation, the attendant depressing the foot pedal to advance the carriers step by step in successive order. As each carrier enters the starting location, the attendant picks up an item of laundry, notes the mark thereon, and punches the carrier push button mechanism to correspond with the number on the item. This operation sets up a partial circuit in the carrier switch box mechanism for the distributor contacts to be ready for the closing of a circuit.

When the carriers are advanced in step by steptravel each one will eventually reach the bin which has been "preset to correspond with the laundry mark on the item carried thereby, and with the setting of the push button mechanism on the carrier bearing the item. The contact of. the positioned switch means represented by the finger contacts and distributor contacts will close the electrical circuit, energize the solenoid to tilt 10 the tray, thus dumping the contents thereof into the appropriate collecting bin. No tray will operate to dump its contents until it reaches the bin with the preselected number tocorrespond with the number of the laundry mark.

This operation will continue until the entire collection of laundered items is properly sorted. Each bin will have all the items of the laundry mark corresponding to that particular bin.

Having disclosed my invention, I claim:

1. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel over said bins in successive order, and means for imparting said travel to said carriers, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, and electric circuit controlled operating means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray at said bin, said electric circuit means comprising a partial circuit including a presettable push button closing switch associated with each bin, and a corresponding partial circuit including a corresponding presettable push button closing switch associated with each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding partial circuits of said bin and said carrier into a complete circuit, the completion of said circuit serving to operate the aforesaid dumping means at said bin conditional upon the closing of both said presettable push button switches.

2. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel over said bins in successive order, and means for imparting said travel to said carriers, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, and electric circuit controlled operating means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray at said bin, said electric circuit means comprising a group of partial circuits associated with each bin, each of said bin circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, a group of partial circuits associated with each carrier, each of said carrier circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, each circuit and its push button switch of each bin corresponding to one of the circuits and its push button switch of each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding circuits of said carrier and bin into completed circuits, and one of said completed circuits serving to operate the aforesaid tray dumping means at said bin conditional upon the closing of the corresponding push button switches in each part of said completed circuit.

3. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel over said bins in successive order, and means for imparting said travel to said carriers, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, and electric circuit controlled operating means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray at said bin, said electric circuit means comprising a group of partial circuits associated with each bin, each of said table push button closing switch, each circuit and its push button switch of each bin corresponding to one of the circuits and its push button switch of each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding circuits of said carrier and bin into completed circuits, and one of said.

cuit, each separate group .of push button switches having means for rendering an individual push button switch thereof selectively and exclusively operable to closing position.

4. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel over said bins in successive or-,

der, and means for imparting said travel to said carriers, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, means at each.

bin for dumping a selected carrier tray comprising pneumatically operated plunger means and a solenoid operated air valve, and electric circuit controlled means for said solenoid comprising a partial circuit including a presettable push button closing switch associated with each bin, and. a corresponding partial circuit including a cor-;

responding presettable push button closing switch associated with each carrier, and positional switchmeans operated by the arrival of a car:- rier at a bin to connect the corresponding partial circuits of said bin and said carrier into a complete circuit, the completion of said circuit servv ing to operate the aforesaid dumping means at said bin conditional upon theclosing of both said presettable push button switches.

5. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus:

each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray com prising pneumatically operated plunger means and a solenoid operated-air valve, and electric circuit controlled means for saidsolenoid comprising a group of partial circuits associated with each bin, each of said bin circuits including a' separate and presettablepush button closing switch, a group of partial circuits associated with each carrier, each of said carrier circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, each circuit and its push button.

switchof each bin corresponding to one of the circuits and its push button switch of each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival-of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding circuits of said carrier and bin into' completed circuits, and one of said completed circuits serving to operate the aforesaid tray dumping means at said bin conditional upon the closing of the corresponding push button switches in each part of said completed circuit.

6. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of care riers adapted to travel over said bins in successive order, and means for imparting said travel to said carrier's, each carrier having a. tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, means; at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray comprising pneumatically operated plunger means and a solenoid operated air valve, and electric circuit controlled means for said solenoid comprising a roup of partial circuits associated with each bin, each of said bin circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, a group of partial circuits associated with each carrier, each of said carrier circuits including a separate and presettable push b'ut-. n closing witch, each circuit and its push but- 75 m a step by step travel to said carriers 'forsum said carriers, each :carrierhaving a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, means at.

12 ton switch of each :bin' corresponding to one of the circuits and. its pus-h button switch of each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding circuits of said carrier and bin into completed circuits, andone of said completed circuits serving toxoperate the aforesaid tray dumping means atrsaidbin conditional upon the closing of the corresponding push button switches in each part of said completed circuit, each separate group of push button switches having means for rendering. an individual push button switch thereof selectively and exclusively op-v erable to .closing position.

'7. Ina selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel over said bins in successive order, pneumatically operated means for imparting a stepiby step travel to said carriers for successively bringing each carrier into registration with one bin' after the other, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, and a foot treadle operated valve for controlling'said pneumatically operated means, and electric. circuit: controlled operating means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray at said bin, said electric circuit means comprising a partial circuit including a presettable push button closing switch associated with each bin, and a corresponding partial circuit including a corresponding presettable push button closing switch associated with each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding partial circuitsof said bin and said carrier into a complete circuit, the completion of said circuit serving to operate the aforesaid dumping means at said bin conditional upon the closing of both said presettable push button switches.

8. In a selectively controlledsorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel oversaid bins in successive order, pneumatically operated means for imparting a step by step travel to said carriers for successivelybringing each carrier into registration with one bin after the other, each carrier having a tray operablefor dumping its contents into a bin, and a foot treadle operated valve for controlling said pneumaticallyoperated means, and electricv circuitcontrolled operating means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray at said bin, said electric circuit means comprising a group of partial .circuits associated with each bin, each of saidbin circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, a group of partial circuits associated with each carrier, each of said carrier circuits including aseparate. and presettablepush button closing switch, each circuit and its push button switch of each bincorrespondingto one of the circuits and its push button switch of each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding circuits of said carrier and bin cessively bringing each carrier into registration with one bin after the other, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, and a foot treadle operated valve for controlling said pneumatically operated means, and electric circuit controlled operating means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray at said bin, said electric circuit means comprising a group of partial circuits associated with each bin, each of said bin circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, a group of partial circuits associated with each carrier, each of said carrier circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, each circuit and its push button switch of each bin corresponding to one of the circuits and its push button switch of each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding circuits of said carrier and bin into completed circuits, and one of said completed circuits serving to operate the aforesaid tray dumping means at said bin conditional upon the closing of the corresponding push button switches in each part of said completed circuit, each separate group of push button switches having means for rendering an individual push button switch thereof selectively and exclusively operable to closing position.

10. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel over said bins in successive order, pneumatically operated means for imparting a step by step travel to said carriers for successively bringing each carrier into registration with one bin after the other, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, and a foot treadle operated valve for controlling said pneumatically operated means, means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray comprising pneumatically operated plunger means and a solenoid operated air valve, and electric circuit controlled means for said solenoid comprising a partial circuit including a presettable push button closing switch associated with each bin, and a corresponding partial circuit including a corresponding presettable push button closing switch associated with each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding partial circuits of said bin and said carrier into a complete circuit, the completion of said circuit serving to operate the aforesaid dumping means at said bin conditional upon the closing of both said presettable push button switches.

11. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel over said bins in successive order, pneumatically operated means for imparting a step by step travel to said carriers for successively bringing each carrier into registration with one bin after the other, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, and a foot treadle operated valve for controlling said pneumatically operated means, means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray comprising pneumatically operated plunger means and a solenoid operated air valve, and electric circuit controlled means for said solenoid comprising a group of partial circuits associated with each bin, each of said bin circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, a group of partial circuits associated with each carrier, each of said carrier circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, each circuit and its push button switch of each bin corresponding to one of the circuits and its push button switch of each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding circuits of said carrier and bin into completed circuits, and one of said completed circuits serving to operate the aforesaid tray dumping means at said bin conditional upon the closing of the corresponding push button switches in each part of said completed circuit.

12. In a selectively controlled sorting apparatus in combination, a row of bins, a series of carriers adapted to travel over said bins in successive order, pneumatically operated means for imparting a step by step travel to said carriers for successively bringing each carrier into registration with one bin after the other, each carrier having a tray operable for dumping its contents into a bin, and a foot treadle operated valve for controlling said pneumatically operated means, means at each bin for dumping a selected carrier tray comprising pneumatically operated plunger means and a solenoid operated air valve, and electric circuit controlled means for said solenoid comprising a group of partial circuits associated with each bin, each of said bin circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, a group of partial circuits associated with each carrier, each of said carrier circuits including a separate and presettable push button closing switch, each circuit and its push button switch of each bin corresponding to one of the circuits and its push button switch of each carrier, and positional switch means operated by the arrival of a carrier at a bin to connect the corresponding circuits of said carrier and bin into completed circuits, and one of said completed circuits serving to operate the aforesaid tray dumping means at said bin conditional upon the closing of the corresponding push button switches in each part of said completed circuit, each separate group of push button switches having means for rendering an individual push button switch thereof selectively and exclusively operable to closing position.

JAMES G. MACKECHNIE, JR.

No references cited.

Non-Patent Citations
Reference
1 *None
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2594589 *May 25, 1949Apr 29, 1952Stevens & Co Inc J PMethod and apparatus for blending fiber
US2666535 *Aug 20, 1949Jan 19, 1954Jordan Marsh CompanySorting system
US2688415 *Jan 6, 1950Sep 7, 1954Western Electric CoConveyer
US3172219 *Oct 19, 1962Mar 9, 1965Hydraxtor CompanyControl apparatus for processing fabric
US6085914 *Mar 24, 1999Jul 11, 2000H. Salb InternationalSoft article sorting system
Classifications
U.S. Classification198/355, 38/2, 198/465.3
International ClassificationD06F93/00
Cooperative ClassificationD06F93/00
European ClassificationD06F93/00