US 2522656 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept. 19, 1950 J. D. A. 'WHALEN METHOD OF PRODUCING STICKS OR REFILLS CONTAINING FASTENERS Flled Sept 21 1944 Patented Sept. 19, 1950 UNITE STATES PATENT OFFECE METHOD OF PRODUCING STICKS OR BEFILLS CONTAINING FASTENERS Application September 21, 1944, Serial No. 555,094 2 Claims. (01. 59-77) This invention relates to a novel type of fastener and more particularly to a plastic-coated wire staple; an improved method of packaging a series of such staples in a strip or stick," socalled, for use as a refill to supply stapling implements and wire-stitching machines; and to the stick or refill produced by said method.
One object of the invention is to provide a plastic-coated wire staple or similar fastener for attaching papers, stitching the seams of cartons and other containers, tacking labels to boxes or the like, fastening together various articles of utility and commerce, and for other similar purposes.
Another object is to provide a new type of wire staple carrying a permanent coating of thermosetting plastic and adapted to be assembled in multiple in contiguous relationship attached together in a stick or refill by means of the surface coating.
Another object is to provide a staple coated with a relatively thin, hard film of thermosetting plastic which may be transparent, translucent or tinted with various colors to adapt the different colors to be used as indicia in fastening together different types of documents or articles of utility.
Another object is to provide a staple carrying a plastic coating permanently bonded thereto to adapt it to remain unbroken and proof against disintegration when the staple is driven into the work.
Another object is to provide a method of costing wire staples or similar fasteners and bonding them together in a strip or stick with the plastic coating serving as an adhesive to cement them together and finally cured or set to render the surface hard and impenetrable.
Another object is to provide a staple stick or refill comprising any suitable number of plasticcoated staples arranged in contiguous relationship with their sides cemented together by means of the plastic coating, yet capable of being individually detached from the stick by operation of the staple-driving means in an implement or machine.
Further objects of the improvement are set forth in the following specification which describes a preferred form of construction of the improved staple, a novel method of attaching a series of the staples in a strip or stick, and the strip or stick produced thereby. The specification is illustrated by the accompanying drawings, in which:
Fig. 1 shows a strip or stick of staples constructed and assembled in accordance with the present invention;
Fig. 2 is a greatly enlarged sectional view taken in a plane extending longitudinally of the strip through the crossbars or crowns of the staples;
Fig. 3 is an enlarged side view of a single staple showing its covering or coating in section:
Fig. 4 is a still further enlarged view of a portion of the staple stick shown in Fig. 2 with parts of the plastic coating shown as broken away; and
Fig. 5 is a perspective view showing a slightly different form of staple constructed of flat wire and embodying the present improvement.
It is a common practice in the present art to provide strips of U-shaped staples assembled in contiguous parallel relationship and attached together in the form of a commercial "stick" or refill for stapling implements. Various means have been employed for holding the staples assembled in the stick, such as by pasting a strip or strips of paper acrossv the top and sides of the stick or by cementing the staples together at their abutting sides.
When a paper strip is pasted to the staples in the stick it must be severed in detaching the individual staples therefrom and portions of the paper may be left adhering to each staple after it is driven into the work. These fragments are unsightly in appearance and the paper particles are liable to collect in the grooves of the stapling machine or implement to clog the latter and impede its action.
Strips of solder or the like for connecting the staples must also be severed to detach them from the stick and with this expedient portions of the solder are left clinging to the staples after they are applied to the work to render them rough and unsightly in appearance. Moreover, particles of the solder becoming loose from the staples are apt to collect in the grooves of the stapling machine or implement to interfere with its action while being liable to injure its mechanism.
United States Patent No. 1,792,235, granted to A. H. Maynard on February 10, 1931, discloses a form of staple stick in which the staples are attached together by a film of adhesive applied to the under side of the crossbars and the inside of the legs of the staples, and this type of stick or refill has been found fairly satisfactory for general use. However, unless the adhesive is applied with care and precision the bond is not strong and permanent and the staples are liable to be broken apart so that the stick or refill loses its integrity. If the film is too thin the staples cannot be securely bonded together, whereas, if the film is relatively thick the adhesive breaks off when the staples are driven and particles thereof are liable to clog the stapling mechanism. Moreover, the particles of hardened adhesive are liable to collect on the work, such as on a sheaf of 3 papers, and be transferred to the fingers of the person handling the same.
The present improved form of staple and the method of attaching such stables in a stick or refill are designed to overcome the defects and deficiencies of the means previously employed in the art.
Referring to the drawings, Fig. 1 shows a strip or stick 8 of U-shaped staples 2 constructed in accordance with the present invention and connected in parallel contiguous relationship by means of the plastic coating on the surfaces of the staples. As shown more in detail in Fig. 2, the staples 2 may be of round wire 3 and usually they are made with their crossbars 4 and legs I of various dimensions in accordance with the type of work for which they are to be used. Preferably, the wire 3 from which the staples are constructed is coated with the plastic in long lengths prior to shaping the staples therefrom.
Suitable thermosetting plastic is employed as the coating for the wire of the staples, for example, any of the synthetic resin plastics of thermosetting type now generally known and commonly used, for example, resins of the phenol aldehyde, urea aldehyde, and melamine type. As shown in Fig. 2 of the drawings, the coatin 6 when applied to the wire before forming the staples should cover the continuous surfaces thereof, that is, throughout the lengths comprising the crossbars 4 and the legs 5, although the terminal points of the staples will not be coated when the wire is cut into lengths before bending.
A large number of strands of the coated wire may be assembled in parallel contiguous relationship to form a continuous flat strip or band, the number of strands and the width of the band being selected in accordance with the length of the staple strip to be formed therefrom. With this'preferred method of manufacture, the multiple strands of coated wire are bonded together before cutting the band into sections of the appropriate length for producing staples of any required dimensions. The continuous band of parallel contiguous strands of coated wire is fed longitudinally through a suitable apparatus while the coating is in a semiliquid state and sticky or tacky to cause the strands to adhere. During this treatment pressure is applied to the sides of the band to force the several wires into closely adjacent relationship while compressing the plastic material between the sides of the strands. Usually, the initial width of the band of wire strands is somewhat greater than the length of the staple sticks to be produced therefrom since under compression at the sides its width will be reduced. For example, if a staple strip four inches in length is desired a suitable number of wires will be applied to the band to give a width of approximately four and one-quarter inches, this width being reduced to four inches as the wire strands are confined and forced together. During this process of uniting the strands by means of the plastic coating the band is confined at the top and bottom so that it cannot buckle and the pressure at the sides of the band may be applied by any suitable means, preferably by a rolling action; the apparatus for performing these operations not being claimed herein as its preferred form of construction is to be set forth in an application to be filed later.
The heat treatment for curing the plastic 4 coating may be applied by means of electricallyenergized units, through the use of infrared ray lamps or by any other suitable means. The heat is preferably applied to both sides of the band of closely associated wire strands to cause the plastic coating to be set or cured to the proper degree to render it hard and practically impenetrable. At the same time, due to the contiguous relationship of the wire strands and the contact between them, the plastic 6 surrounding the wires 3 will act as an adhesive to cement the wires together with an exceedingly strong bond between their sides. By this means a particularly strong and substantially permanent joinder is made between all the staples eventually formed and connected in the stick B so that the bonding is not liable to be fractured or ruptured when large numbers of the sticks or refills are handled and packed for shipment. Moreover, the bond is so strong that jarring oi the packages during shipment or dropping of the sticks will not fracture the connection between the staples to cause them to break apart.
After the band of parallel wire strands has been treated progressively in the manner explained above, relatively short lengths are cut therefrom by severing it across its width and during this last operation the severed wires may be bent to form U-shaped staples of any particular size such as illustrated in the present drawings.
It is to be understood also that the present improved staples and the sticks or refills containing them may be formed by other methods; for example, a single strand of plastic-coated wire may be cut into short lengths and these lengths assembled in groups or blanks for forming them into staples joined together in a stick, with the heat treatment applied either before or after the staples are formed from the wire.
As another variation in the method of joining the staples in a stick, relatively short lengths of the coated wire may first be bent to form staples 2 of the required shape and dimensions and a plurality of the staples, in number suitable to produce a strip of the required length, may be assembled in parallel contiguous relationship as shown in Figs. 1 and 2 with the crossbars 4 and legs 5 of the staples in contact. The formed staples 2 coated with a thin film of the plastic 6 may then be suitably supported and clamped together in closely abutting relationship nor final treating in a heating oven or other suitable apparatus. In order that the formed staples may be assembled in close association to include a maximum number in each stick, the coated wire strands or the coated staples, as the case may be, are forced together under pressure while the coating is relatively soft so as to reduce the thickness of the plastic material between their sides. Under such pressure the double thickness of the plastic coating between adjacent wires may be reduced to a film only slightly thicker or of no greater thickness than the single layer on the wire as the plastic is caused to flow around the wire. Moreover, the forcing of the wire strands or .the staples together tends to insure a complete contact and more secure bond therebetween.
It will be lobserved particularly from the sectional view, Fig. 4, that the crossbars 4 and legs 5 of the staples 2 in the stick S are in contact for relatively short areas only so that when a stick of staples is placed in a stapling implement or other machine the impact of the driver against the top of a staple will cause the bond to be broken, whereof to permit each individual staple to be detached from the strip and driven into the work.
While Figs. 1 to 4, inclusive, illustrate the present improved staple as constructed from round wire 3, it is to be understood that wire of other cross-sectional contour may be employed. For example, Fig. 5 shows in perspective a portion of a stick of staples S constructed from fiat wire 1 and it is obvious that they may be coated in the same manner as that described in connection with the round wire staples first referred to.
It will be observed from the foregoing specification that the present improved type of staple embodying a plastic coating enclosing a wire presents a smoother and more attractive high gloss finish on its surface. The plastic material may be transparent, translucent or tinted with colored dyes so that differently colored staples used for different classes of work will serve as indicia for designating groups or sheaths of papers as to their contents. Likewise, for use in tacking objects to other articles, the staples may be colored to match the color of the articles with which they are used or the coloring may serve simply to ornament the staples. As another adaptation, staples of different dimensions may be of different colors to indicate their size.
A further and important feature of the improvement consists in the fact that the plastic coating on the wire of the staples provides protection against rust or corrosion so that ordinary steel wire may be used to obviate the expense of plating or tinning it. In addition, the staples are more convenient and easy to handle due to their smooth glossy surfaces and ofler less resistance in perforating them through large numbers of paper sheets or when driven into other objects. Likewise, the smooth glossy surfaces of the staplw adapt them to glide easily in the machine both in feeding them to the driving mechanism and in driving them therefrom, while the coating, being permanent and not easily disintegrated, there is little danger of particles of the plastic becoming detached to clog the mechanism and cause interference with its operation.
A still further advantage oi the present improved plastic-coated staple consists in its resistance to heat and humidity. After the thermosetting plastic has once been heated and then cooled it is impervious to ordinary heat and consequently is not affected deleteriously when the staple sticks are shipped into regions with [hot and humid climates such as the southern parts of this country or into tropical countries.
While the present improvements are herein shown as embodied in a preferred form of construction, it is to be understood that various modifications may be made in the form of staple, both as to the material from which it is constructed and as regards its shape and dimensions, without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention. It also is to be understood that I do not limit myself to any particular formula for the plastic material used to coat the staples, since various types of synthetic resins or the like may be used for this purpose providing they are of a thermosetting nature; and likewise, the method of treating the wire strands or the staples may be varied somewhat from that herein described.
Therefore, without limiting myself in this respect, I claim:
1. A method of producing sticks or refills containing a plurality of wire staples consisting in coating wire with a thin film of thermosetting resin, assembling a pluralit of coated wire strands in parallel contiguous relationship, confining the wire strands in assembled relationship to cause the plastic on the several wire strands to adhere at the points of contact, curing the resin to provide a hard substantially impenetrable coating on the surface of the wire, and forming the wire strands into U-shaped staples bonded together in a strip or stick.
2. A method of producing sticks or refills contaming a plurality of wire staples consisting in coating a continuous wire with a thin film of thermosettlng resin, assembling a group of multiple strands of the coated wire in parallel contiguous relationship, confining the wire strands at the top and bottom of the band, applying pressure to force the wires together laterally while the resin is relatively soft and tacky, cutting the band of multiple strands into relatively short sections, and bending the assembled wire strands to form staples bonded together in a stick or refill.
JOSEPH D. A. WHALEN.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,792,235 Maynard Feb. 10, 1931 1,896,042 Ruben Jan. 31, 1933 1,960,176 Weber et al May 22, 1934 2,071,685 Ellsworth et a1. Feb. 23, 1937 2,085,780 Zeruneith July 6, 1937 2,122,814 Hanson July 5, 1938 2,124,232 Kittredge et a1 July 19, 1938 2,125,211 Vogel July 26, 1938 2,128,443 Vogel Aug. 30, 1938 2,137,467 Vogel Nov. 22, 1938 2,158,242 Maynard May 16, 1939 1,196,569 Stroehla et al Apr. 9, 1949 2,296,942 Nutt Sept. 29, 1942 2,321,847 Obstfeld June 15, 1943 2,323,334 Kauth July 8, 1943 2,425,294 Morgan Aug. 12, 194'! FOREIGN PATENTS Number Country Date 2,236 Great Britain Sept. 13, 1884