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Publication numberUS2551080 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 1, 1951
Filing dateJun 28, 1946
Priority dateJun 28, 1946
Publication numberUS 2551080 A, US 2551080A, US-A-2551080, US2551080 A, US2551080A
InventorsAllen Howard G, Gampp George E
Original AssigneeAmerican Mach & Foundry
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Work station conveying mechanism
US 2551080 A
Abstract  available in
Images(6)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

May 1, 1951 H. G. ALLEN EIAL .A WORK STATION CONVEYING MECHANISM 6 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed June 28, 1946 700 270 77 INVENTORS. 4

fl DEE MG WM 0 3 v.44

y 9 H. G ALLEN ETAL 2,551,080

WORK STATION CONVEYING MECHANISM Filed June 2a, 1946 e sheets-sheet 2 1H, "60 v 1 I .9 0 L2 75 INVENTORS.

HOWARD s. ALLEN.

49. 64. BY GEORGE E. GAMPR' Q?Kor77:

y 1951 H. G. ALLEN Er AL 2, 0

7 WORK STATION CONVEYING MECHANISM Filed June 28, 1946 e Sheets-Sheet s INVENTORS.

HOWARD 6,4 1.5. GEORGE E. GAMPP May 1,- 1951 H. G. ALLEN ET'AL WORK STATION CONVEYING MECHANISM 6 Sheets-Sheet 4 .Filed June 28, 1946 wwx wk INVEN T ORSQ Patented May 1, 1951 WORK STATION CONVEYING MECHANISM Howard G. Allen, Niagara Falls, and George E. Gampp, Kenmore, N. Y., assignors to American Machine & Foundry Company, a corporation of New Jersey Application June 28, 1946, Serial No. 680,242

6 Claims. 1

The present invention relates to article handling devices of the generaltype in which articles are carried by a conveyor through successive stations in which different operations, take place.

The general object of the present invention is to provide in apparatus of the type described a novel construction in which article carrying devices on a conveyor may be presented in constantly moving relationship to certain stations in a machine and may be presented intermittently to other stations in the machine in successive groups traveling at a reduced speed or held temporarily stationary. To this end a unitary conveyor of the endless, flexible type is so mounted in the machine that portions thereof may be driven for linear movement at a. constant speed and another portion may be driven intermittently at varying speeds and may be held temporarily stationary if so desired.

An example of the type of apparatus in which the present invention may be used to great advantage is apparatus for filling and closing receptacles, such as cartons or bags. ,In such apparatus the receptacles may be stored in a magazine from which they must be removed, opened and placed in an article carrier on a conveyor. The receptacles are then advanced to a filling stationrwhere they .are filled, usually from a hopper or the like. The filled receptacles are then advanced to one or more successive stations in which they may be closed, or evacuated and closed, .or otherwise operated upon either before or after closing. In such apparatus it is usually desirable that the magazine and the filling hopper, at least, be stationary and it is therefore are. moving. Thus, in many instances apparatus of this type is limited in its overall speed of operation by the relatively slowly operating -magazine and filling stations and is further limited by the loss of time involved in starting and stopping the conveyor.

Many other types of automatic machinery in- ,clude certain stations which are relatively slow in operation or which require that the conveyor be slowed or stopped during operation thereof and include other stations which are relatively much faster in operation or which may operate during relatively rapid movement of the con- -veyor.

According to the present invention, the overall capacity of many machines of the type discussed above may be increased several times by providing stations having several identical operating units of the slower type and arranging such units to operate simultaneously while a corresponding number of article carriers are held stationary in proper position relative to the station. Vfhen the operation of the several identical units is complete, the conveyor may be advanced in a single step of .sufiicient length to bring another group of carriers into operative relationship with the station. Another portion of the same conveyor is driven at a constant linear speed equal to the average linear speed of the intermittently driven portion. The more rapidly operating stations, or those stations which may be operated during movement of the articlecarriers, may be positioned along the path of the conveyor in that portion which moves at constant linear speed. Thus it is possible to design such machines so that the production rate is limited only by the :speed of rotation of the faster stations therein and at the same time to deliver articles individually at a constant rate to such other machinery as may be provided in a given installation.

Other and 'further objects of the present invention will become apparent upon a consideration of the following detailed description of preferred forms of the invention taken in connection with the drawings accompanying and forming a part of the present specification.

In the drawings:

Fig. 1 is an elevational view with certain parts omitted of one form of apparatus embodying the present invention;

Fig. 2 is a fragmentary sectional view along the line 2-2 in Fig. 1;

Fig. 3 isa fragmentary sectional view along the line 3-3 in Fig. 1;

Fig. 4 is a sectional view along the line 44 in Fig. 2;

Fig. 5 is a horizontal sectional view along the line 5-5 in Fig. 1;

Fig. 6 is an elevational view corresponding to Fig. 1 and showing parts omitted from Fig. 1;

Fig. 6a is a diagrammatic illustration of a cam used in the apparatus shown in Fig. 1;

Fig. '7 is a fragmentary elevational view with parts in section showing a modified form of the apparatus shown in Fig. 1.;

Fig. 8 is a sectional view along the line 8-4! in Fig. 7;

Fig. 9 is an elevational view of another modified form of apparatus embodying the present invention;

Fig. 1c is a sectional view taken along the line lillil in Fig. 9;

Fig. 11 is a somewhat diagrammatic plan view of the apparatus shown in Fig. 9 and taken in the plane lil! in Fig.

Fig. 12 is a sectional view taken along the line l2l2 in Fig. 15;

Fig. 13 is a fragmentary side elevational view, with parts in section, generally along the line I3-i3 in Fig. 9;

Fig. 14 is an elevational view of the righthand end of the apparatus shown in Fig. 9; and

Fig. 15 is an elevational View corresponding to Fig. 9 and in which certain parts have been omitted.

Referring now to the drawings, the form of the invention shown in Figs. 1 through 6 will first be described. This form of the invention is ap plied to a machine for filling containers, such as paper bags, and, in particular, for filling relatively long, narrow bags with some fragile material, such as potato chips. The machine constructed in accordance with the present invention includes an endless fiexible conveyor having carriers for the bags and which is driven intermittently on one side of the machine and continuously on the other. Empty bags are positioned by groups in carriers on the intermittent side, the empty bags are moved as a group to a filling station in which all of the bags within the group are filled simultaneously, and the filled bags are carried away from the filling station. Thereafter the filled bags are conducted to the continuously moving side of the conveyor into registry with spaced individual receivers moving continuously along a second conveyor and are released by the carriers for transfer to the receivers, The second conveyor then may carry the filled bags to other apparatus (not shown), such as closing devices and the like.

In Fig. 1 there is shown a base it having a housing If supported thereon. The housing l2 has journalled therein in bearings M a main drive shaft Hi to which is fixed a barrel cam Hi. The drive shaft it is driven at a relatively slow rate of speed by a suitable source of power, such as a motor and speed reducer unit (not shown) The base iii also supports a standard 28 which serves as the main vertical support for the machine. A horizontally disposed shaft 22 is journalled in suitable bearings 23 carried by the standard 26. At the right-hand end of the shaft 22 there is mounted a sprocket 24 connected to a sprocket 25 on the main drive shaft l6 by a suitable chain 23. As shown in the drawings, the sprocket 25 islarger in diameter than the sprocket 24, whereby the shaft 22 is driven at a greater-angular speed than that of the main drive shaft 16.

A vertically disposed rotatable shaft is carried in the standard 213 and is drivingly con nected at its lower end by bevel gears 32 and 33 to the shaft 22.

The upper portion of standard 25 is provided with vertically spaced pairs of bearings 34 which slidably support two horizontally disposed rods 36, the free ends of which are connected by opposed tie members 38 and 39. The rods 3% and the tie members 38 and 39 thus form a horizontally reciprocable carriage C slidable in the bearings 34. The carriage C serves as a movable support for the conveyor mechanism now to be described.

The tie member 38 rotatably supports a vertically disposed shaft 46 having fixed to its upper end a sprocket 432. The tie member 39 rotatably supports a vertically disposed shaft ii, having fixed to its upper end a sprocket 43 located in the same horizontal plane as the sprocket 82. A sprocket 44 is fixed to the upper end of the vertical shaft 36 and is located in the plane of the sprockets 42 and 43.

Referring now to Fig. 5, it will be observed that a suitable driving chain D passes around the sprockets d2, 43 and 44, there being a direct run of chain D between the sprockets s2 and 43 at the front of the machine. At the rear of the machine the chain D extends along a path parallel to the run at the front of the machine from the sprocket 42 to an idler sprocket 423 rotatably carried by a vertically disposed stub shaft 48 in the standard 20. The chain D then loops around the drive sprocket M and an idler sprocket rotatably carried by a vertically disposed shaft 4? horizontally adjustable in a suitable slot 49 formed in the standard 20. The chain D then extends from the idler 45 to the sprocket 43 in a direction parallel to the run of the chain on the front of the machine. The idler 45 may be adjusted along the slot 49 to take up slack in the driving chain D.

Referring back to Fig. 1, the shaft Ail has secured thereto a pair of vertically spaced sprockets 5!] and the shaft 4| has secured thereto a similar pair of sprockets 5|. Two endless article carrier supporting chains 52 pass respectively around the upper and lower sets of sprockets 5i) and 51. As shown in Fig. 5 the front and rear runs of the chains 52 are parallel.

The chains 52 are provided with lugs 54 (see Fig. 1) to each vertically aligned pair of which is secured an article carrier 56. The carriers 55 are disposed at equally spaced intervals throughout the length of the chains 52. In the construction chosen for illustration herein, the carriers 56 may comprise elongated rectangular open-ended boxes of suitable proportions to receive the particular bags or other containers to be filled. It will be noted that several of the carriers 56 have been omitted from Fig. 1.

Referring now to Figs. 5 and 6 there is shown ahorizontal plate 58 with U-shaped or curved end portions supported on the carriage C beneath the lower open ends of the carriers 56 along the run of the conveyor at the front of the machine. The plate 58 extends beneath the carriers 56 around the sprockets 5D and along the rear run of the conveyor to a termination point 60. The plate 58 is provided to support the bottoms of the containers positioned within the carriers 56 until they reach the point 69. Beyond the point 60 the containers may gravitate or be otherwise removed from the carrier to a straightaway conveyor 62 having receivers 64 positioned therealong at intervals corresponding to the intervals between the carriers 56.

The straightaway conveyor 62 is only partially shown in the drawings, it being understood that such conveyor may take any suitable form. For use with the elongated bags chosen for illustration herein, the receivers 54 will be essential if it is desired to hold the bags in definite upright positions on the straightaway conveyor, as would be likely when such straightaway conveyor is to conduct the filled bags through a closing device.

In such event it will be essential that the linear speed of the receivers 64' match that of the carriers 56 in the rear run of the carrier conveyor.

Accordingly, there has been shown in .Fig. .1 1a

The chain 61 the straightaway conevyor .62. I

.ilfn many instances the straightaway conveyor 62 iwilllform apart of another machine or'of previouslyxinstalled equipment'in a user plant. :In suchcases the driving mechanism .65, 61 may be used .if feasible, and, if not, any othersuitable arrangement may be made to secure proper synchronization between the carriers 56 and ;-re-

-ceivers 64.

. .Referringj again to Fig.1., thereis shown mechanism for reciprocating the carriage LC within'the bearings .34. This mechanism includes the barrel cam. 18., which will be described :in greater .detail Zhereinbelow, and a lever lid, pivoted at .12 in the housing 12. .At its lower end thelever 10 carries aroller follower M, which rides in the track I6 of cam I8. At its upper end the lever 101s pivotally connected to alink i'18,xwhic"h is, in turn, pivoted'ito the tie member 38 of the carriage C.

Rotation of the-cam 118 will therefore be trans- :mitted through the linkage described :to-produce horizontal reciprocation of the carriage C The track it ofcam i8 is so laid out as to move the carriage ,C in the particular manner desired for any .g-i-yen installation.

In the present illustration, the relationship between the time taken for .filling :the containers and the time necessary for closing the filled containers is such that it is desirable to fill three containers :at .a time Obviously, this is merely illustrative and smaller or larger groups may be selected, :in accordance with any particular set of circumstances .Also, "in the present illustration there are two operations disclosed which most desirably maybe performed .Whilethe articlecar- .triers 53 are -l'ieldstationary. In other installations it may be desirable to perform additional operations on the intermittent side of the conveyor. 'The operations .performed on the .intermittent side of the conveyor in the embodiment shown in Fi s. 1 through ,6 are those of positioning empty bags in the article "carriers 56 and of filling such bags.

.InFig. 6 there .is shown a filling stationsfill havingthree spouts .or 'filling units and which may include any suitable arrangement for the supply i of filling material thereto, as for example, a chute B2. The lining station as mayalso include automatic weighing devices, if desired, in order thatcharges of -predeterminedWeight may be delivered to each :of the three bags positioned beneath the spouts.

In .Fig. 6 the article carriers move toward the ,left and, accordingly, the bag positioning station is. located to the right of the filling station's.

No apparatushas been show-nfor the positioning and in any installation wherein such expedient is -.adoprted, it is most likely that three bags will be inserted simultaneously. Thus, 'the'automatic 7 bag ieedingapparatus wouldinclude three magazines :and three units .;for opening the bags and inserting the open bags in the article carriers. Mechanism .of this latter type is old and wellknown :and forms no specific apart of the present invention.

.In order to bring the bags 84, .86 and 88 into position occupiedxby bags'90, 92 and 94 beneath the three filling spouts of the stationBlJ, it is necessary for the article carrying conveyor to .;'move aidistance'tothe left equal to three times the -.center-'to-c.enter :spacing between the article carriers :56. .Desirably this movement .is per- 'formed as rapidly as possible in order that a maximum amount of time be available for hold- :ingthe conveyor stationary for operation of the 'posit'ioningxand'filling stations. In the event that :smallerior largerigroupsof bags are to be handled simultaneously, the-movement of the conveyor in .each instance should be a. distance equal to the :sumof the distances between a'plurality .of article carriers 56 greater by one than the number of bags within .the group.

The horizontal reciprocation of the carriage C vsmadeiuse of to move the article carriers 56 in an'intermittent manner while on the front side of the machine, and, as a result of the particular 'designsof ithermachine, such reciprocation of the carriage C will have no effect upon the continuousmovement of the carriers 56 along the rear side .df the machine.

3.111 Fig. 6a there is shown a development of a barrel cam 118 which is appropriate for producing the carriage movements required .for conttainers in groups of three. In said Fig. 6a the atoiloweriroller .14 :is shown at the extreme lefthandend of the view and the position there illustrated corresponds with the position of the fol- ;icvver M in the learn [8, when the carriage C occupies the i-position shown in Fig. 1. When the zoom tsrotateszin the direction indicated by the arrow associated with shaft 16 in Fig. l, the :straight portion :of the cam track lying between at and 120 inFig. .601. will move the follower and through the linkage provided will move the carriage C from the position shown in full lines .inFlg. .1 to the right *andsubstantially into the positionindicated in broken lines in .said Fig. 1. Since this portion of thecam track 16 inclines in a straight line, the movement of the carriage Q will "be uniform in speed. The speed of such movement is equal to the linear speed of the outer surfaces of the chains '52 as they pass around the sprockets 5-0 and 5|. Thus, during such movement of the carriage C, the run of chains 52 lying between the sprockets 5B and 51 non the irontside of the machine will'remain sta- --tionany. The "run .oflchains 52 on the rear side ecithe machine willcontinue its linear travel with no change in speed.

When the .cam follower 14 enters the portion cream track 76 lying between 120 and 360,the reverse curve of such cam track will bring the carriage 1C gently to a stop and then move it :towarrlthe left as viewed in Fig. 1. Such movement will be gently accelerated at thebeginning and then more rapidly accelerated to a point approximately midway (240) of this portion of the cam track. Thereafter the cam track is'so shaped .as to decelerate,. first slowly and then rapidly until it comes to rest at about the 340 position ath'ereof. Between 340 and 360 the carriage "C may be accelerated to'the speed at which itmoved toward the right in the 0 to 120 portion of the eam track.

- -=It will be recognized that the speed of movement ofthe carriage C toward the left is necessarily such that the article carriers 56 will move rapidly enough to catch up or, stated otherwise, the average speed of the carriers 56 must be equal within both runs of the conveyor chains 52.

It will be recognized from the foregoing description that it is possible to so lay out the cam I8 that the article carriers 56 will be held truly stationary during the major portion at least of the travel of the carriage C to the right, as viewed in'Fig. 1. However, the manufacture of a barrel cam in accordance with such a layout may require such tolerances as to render the machine unduly expensive to manufacture. Furthermore, wear on the cam track and the bearings in the linkage'would be very likely to result in irregularities such that a slight weaving of the carriers 56 will occur during the time they are supposed to remain stationary. Expense in manufacturing the machine and upkeep expense thereof during use may be greatly reduced by providing the locking means for the article carrier conveyor now to be described;

In Figs. 1 and the chain locking mechanism is associated with the driving chain D and is "generally indicated at 96. This mechanism is supported on a suitable bracket 96 attached to the standard 20. Referring now to Fig. 2, it will be observed that the mechanism includes a frame I00 fixed to the bracket 98 (not shown in Fig. 2) and which is so shaped as to straddle the driving chain D. The portion I02 of the frame I00 has formed thereon a'plurality of teeth I04 (see Fig. 4) of such pitch as to mesh with the chain D. The teeth I04 are so positioned as to lie outside the normal path of the chain D during operation of the machine. On the opposite side of the chain D the frame I00 has mounted thereon a slide I66 having teeth I08 on the inner end thereof similar to the teeth I04. At the outer end of slide I06 there is formed a horizontal slot I I0 which receives a pin II2 carried by one arm I I4 of a bell crank lever pivoted at III; to the bracket 98. An expansive spring H8 is mounted in the slide I06 and through a iplunger I20 serves to urge the slide to the left as viewed in Fig. 2 or Fig. 4 to the extent permitted by the pin and slot H2, H0. The spring II8 serves merely as a relief spring.

An expansive spring I22 carried by a plunger I24 slidably mounted at one end in a suitable lug formed on the frame I00 and pivoted at its other end to the arm I I4 of the bell crank lever serves to hold the slide I06 to the right as shown in Fig. 2. In this position the chain D is free of engagement with the teeth I04 and I08. When the bell crank lever arm H4 is rocked in a counterclockwisedirection against the spring I22, the slide I06 is moved to the left to bring the teeth I08 into mesh with the chain D andto displace the chain into engagement with'the teeth I04, as shown in Fig. 4.

Suitable mechanism may be provided to lock the chain D as described above in proper timed relation with the reciprocation of carriage C. For example, an arm I26 of the bell crank lever previously mentioned may have pivotally attached thereto a link I28 extending downwardly of the standard 20 and pivotally connected to one end of a lever I30 pivoted at I32 to a boss I34 on the housing I2. The other end of lever I30 carries a roller follower I36 for cooperation with a cam I38 fixed to the shaft I6 and having a high portion I40. The return spring I22 (see Fig. 2) serves to press the follower I36 into engagement with the periphery of the cam I38. The'low and high portions of the cam I38 correspond respectively with the unlocked and locked positions of the mechanism 96. It will beunderstood that the high portion I40 will be of such extent and so located as to lock the chain D substantially throughout the time in which the carriage C is moving to the right as viewed inFig. 1. Thus the high portion I40 in the. particular device illustrated here in will have an exteritof approximately corresponding with the positions 0 to 120 in Fig. 6a.

From the foregoing description it will be apparent that the front run of the driving chain D and of the conveyor and carriers 56 will be held stationary during operation of the positioning and filling stations. The locking mechanism just described may be used where the carriers 56 must be held truly stationary and where it is not desired'to manufacture the machine to extremely close tolerances.

The modification illustrated in Figs. 7 and 8 includes a different form of cam for reciprocating the carriage, but is otherwise identical with the'm'achine illustrated in Figs. 1 through '7. In this" modification, the carriage CC is provided .with tie members I42 and I43,'having extensions I44 and I45, respectively, projecting into a suitable opening I46 in the standard I48, corresponding to the standard20 in Fig. 1. The extensions I43 and I44 are rigidly joined by a brace I50 and carry respectively roller cam followers I52 and I53.

The roller follower I52 is arranged to follow the periphery of a plate cam I54 secured to the vertical shaft I56, which corresponds to the shaft 30 in Fig. 1 and which may be rotated by the means illustrated in said Fig. 1. The roller follower I53 is arranged to follower the periphery of a plate can I55 fixed to the shaft I56 just beneath the plate cam I54.

The plate cams I54 and I55 are complementary in that the distance is constant across the center of shaft I56 from any point on the pe- ,riphery of one of the cams to the corresponding point on the other cam. Thus, since the roller followers I52 and I53 are diametrically opposed with respect to the center of shaft I56, they each will bear constantly upon the periphery of the cam which they are designed to follow.

The cams I54 and I55 are so laid out as to move the carriage CC exactly as the carriage C is moved in the machine illustrated in Fig. 1. Obviously the plate cams I54 and I55, just as cam I8 in Fig. 1, may be designed to move the carriage through such distances and at such speeds as to produce any desired change in movement of the article carrier conveyor on the front side of the machine without disturbing the constant-speed linear movement of the conveyor on the rear side of the machine.

In Figs. 9-15 there is shown a machine embodying the present invention and which includes a single endless flexible conveyor for presenting article carriers intermittently in groups to a bag-positioning station, a bag-filling station and a settling station on the front side of the machine and continuously to evacuating, sealing and discharging stations on the rear side of the machine.

Referring first to Fig. 9, which comprises a front view of the machine, the article carriers progress intermittently from left to right in groups of three to a bag-inserting station E, a filling station F, and a settling station G. No mechanism has been shown in the inserting staarea-56st tion E, inasmuch as the bags may be inserted by hand or by any desired form "of automatic device. The filling station F has been shown "as a hopper I60 having an inletchute I62 and three bag-filling spoutsor units I64. It will be understood that this stationmay include any desired form of automatic weighingdevi'cesor measuring devices for delivering a suitab-lenetquantity of material to the bags 'in'proper timed relation to themovement of the carriers. The mechanism the settling station G will vary widely in accordance with the particular commodity being packaged. g

If the commodity is coffee, for example, a high speed vibratory mechanism will be arranged to operatesimultaneo'usly upon the filled bags during the period of time they remain in the Sta-- tion G.

shown in Fig. 9 three plungers I51 are supported for limited vertical motion within the top ofthe shield I66. The plungers I57 are so spaced from each other as to lie respectively beneath the three carriers 264 in-the settling station G and upper surfaces of the plungers I! are nor mally flush with the upper surface of the shield I66. An eccentric cam I58 is provided for each of the plungers I57 and suitable means may be employed to rotate the cams I58 and to move theiin into engagement withthe plungers I51 when the carriers 26 are at rest within the station G. Forexample, the cams I58 may be fixed to a shaft I mountedfor rotation in a frame I61 A motor I63, carried by the frame I'6I, is connected to the shaft ltfi to rotatethe cams I5l at desired speed. The frame I6I is carried bya-pair of bell-crank levers I65 pivoted 'oh the base of the machine. The free arms of the bellcrank levers l6'5have pivoted thereto an ope-at ing rod I 67' having a cam-follower I 66 on the free end thereof, A cam I II is fixed to the main drive shaft of the machine which will be described ingreater detail hereinbelow. The cam H is so contoured that the operating rod I67 willbe moved toward the right and the frame I6I will be elevated to a position in which the eccentric cams I 58 engage the plungers I5! when so-d'esired. It is preferred that the plungers I51 shall be reciprocate'd only when the carriers 2% are at rest and for this reason it will be understood -that the frame I6I' will be elevated and lowered in proper timed relation with the intermittent movement of the front run of the conveyor.

Referring next to Fig. 11, there is shown an enclosed rotary turret H through which the article.

carriers are conducted at a uniform linear speed. The turret I-I may be equipped with any suitable devices for operating upon the articles carried by the carriers, as for example evacuating, bag sealing and package discharging stations.

In Fig. 9 the machine is shown with shields in I place and it will be observed that the shield I66 conceals the driving mechanism. In Fig. 15 the lower portion of the machine is shown with shields removed. "In Fig. l5 the base I68 carries two standards I70 and I72, which carry respectively pairs of bearings I'M and I16 cuss see Fig. 11) for slidably receiving rods I'IB forming a part of a reciprocating carriag-e'K. The opposite ends of the rods I76 are joined by tie-members I89 and I 82. Additional tie-members I84 and I86are provided intermediate the bearings I14 and I16. The latter tie-members' ar e provided not only to rigidify the carr'iageK but also to carry cam answers I88 and I98, which cooper =10 ate respectively with plate cams I92 and I94 secured to a vertical shaft I96.

The shaft I96 extends through a speed reducer '!98 mounted on the base I68 and is connected by the mechanism therein with a pulley 26G, belt 262 and main driving motor M, suitably supported on the standard I'll The article' carrying conveyor is indicated at R and in the present modification is made up of article carriers 2M and spacing links 236 articulated therewith. As shown in Fig. 13 the links 296 may comprise upper and lower spaced plates connected by vertically disposed ins and it will be understood that the article carriers 204 may be provided with perforated lugs to receive the link pins.

The conveyor R passes around a drive sprocket 208 (see Fig. 11), which has formed therein suitably shaped recesses 2I2 toreceive the article carriers 26!; and through them to drive the conveyor R. The sprocket 298 is fixed to a vertical shaft 2 I 2 having a sprocket 2 I4 on the lower end thereof, which meshes with a chain 2H5 passing around a sprocket ZIB fixed on the main drive shaft I96 (also see Fig. 15).

Referring again to Fig. ill, the conveyor R extends from drive sprocket fll'ii to an idler sprocket 22% mounted on a vertical shaft 222 carried by the member I86 of the carriage K. The conveyor R then -ektends from idler 226 across the front of the machine to an idler sprocket 224 mounted on a vertical shaft 226 carried by the tie-member I82 at theopposite end of the carriage K. From the idler 2 24 the conveyor extends to an idler sprocket 228 mounted on a suitable vertical shaft 239 carried by the base I68,

The conveyor R extends from the. idler 228 to a large diameter idler sprocket 232 mounted on a vertical shaft 234 carried by a standard 235 resting upon a rearward extension 236 of the base I68. The large sprocket 232 is located beneath the turretl-I and serves to carry the articles on conveyor B into operative relationship with the mechanism in said turret. It will be understood that if so desired the sprocket 232 may be fixed to the shaft 234 whereby rotation of the shaft 234 may be availed of to drive the mechanism in turret H.

The conveyor R extends from the idler 232 to the drive sprocket 208 to complets its circuit.

From the foregoing description, it will be apparent that the entire length of conveyor R is driven by the sprocket 268. Since the sprocket 208 is positioned on the rear side of the machine, the run of conveyor across thefront of the machine may be caused to move intermittently by proper reciprocation of the carriage K in the manner fully discussed in connection with the preceding modifications.

The plate cams I82 and I94 may be laid out to move the carriage K in such manner as may be desired. In the present instance, the cams are laid out to reciprocate the carriage K from the full line position in Fig. 11 to the broken line position therein at such speed as to hold the carriers 204 stationary across the front of the machine for a suitable period of time. The carriage is then moved back to the full line position as quickly as possible, having due regard for proper acceleration rates. The extent of movement of the carriage K is such that on the movement thereof from left to right (viewed from the front of the machine) the carriers are advanced a distance equal to three times the center-to-center spacing of the carriers 204. This results in the movement of three carriers 264 away from a given station and the movement of the succeeding three carriers into such station. As in the preceding modifications, if it is desired to operate simultaneously upon a number of carriers 264 less than or greater than three, it is merely necessary to design the cams I92 and I94 in such manner as to move the conveyor R step by step in increments equal to the sum of the distances between a number of carriers greater by one than the selected number.

As in the preceding modifications, it may be desirable to provide means for positively locking the intermittently moving portion of the conveyor R during periods of rest. The present modification does not include a drive chain separate from the conveyor itself and it is therefore preferable to provide a locking mechanism for acting directly upon the conveyor R. A looking mechanism suitable for this purpose will now be described, it being recalled that the full line position of the carriage K in Figs. 9-15 is that occupied just prior to movement thereof to the left to efiect stopping of the front portion of conveyor R.

In Fig. 11 there is shown a slide 246 mounted in front of the conveyor R in a guide 242 carried by a bracket 244 (Fig. 13) secured to the standard Ill]. The slide 246 is movable within the guide 242 in a direction transverse to the path of travel of the conveyor R from the full line position in which it is clear of the conveyor to a position in which the end 246 thereof is projected into a link 266. The end 246 is so shaped as to enter between the upper and lower plates and between the pins making up the link 266. A similar slide 248 is mounted in a guide 250 supported by the bearing block 114 to the rear of the conveyor R. The slide 248 is movable into and out of locking engagement with a link 2136 in the same manner as, and preferably simultaneously with the slide 240.

Movement of the slides 24!! and 248 in proper timed relation with movement of the carriage K may be effected in any suitable manner. For example (Fig. 13), a lever 252 may be pivoted at one end to the slide 24% and intermediate its length to an extension 254 of the bracket 244. A similar lever 256 may be pivoted at one end to the slide 248 and intermediate its length at 258 upon the standard I16. A contractile spring 251 extends between the levers 252 and 256 tending to move the locking slides away from looking position. The lower ends of levers 252 and 255 are equipped with roller followers 265 and 262 respectively, which bear'on opposite vertical faces of a sliding cam 264 mounted in a slideway 266 carried by the base I 68.

Referring now to Fig. 10, it will be observed that the sliding cam 264 includes a narrow portion 268, a wide portion 212 and inclined portions 216 extending therebetween. When the sliding cam 264 is in the position shown in Fig. 10, the roller followers 266 and 262 are relatively close together and the locking mechanism is in unlocked position, as shown in Fig. 13. When the sliding cam 264 is moved to the left asviewed in Fig. 10, the roller followers 260 and 262 will gradually be forced apart as they ride upon the inclined surfaces 210 and will reach a final position determined by the width of the wide portion 212. In this final position the locking mechanism is moved against the spring 251 into locking engagement with the conveyor R.

The sliding cam 264 has loosely pivoted thereto at 214 one end of a lever 216, the other end of which is pivoted at 218 to the base 168. A spring 286 is stretched between the lever 216 and the base I68 to urge the lever and the sliding cam 264 to the right, as viewed in Fig. 10. The lever 216 carries a roller follower 282 intermediate its length for cooperation with a plate cam 284 fixed upon the main vertical drive shaft I96. The plate cam 284 is provided with a low portion for positioning the sliding cam 264 as shown in Fig. 13 and a high portion for moving the sliding cam 264 to the left to cause locking of the conveyor R. As shown in Fig. 13 the high portion of the plate cam 284 is about to engage the follower 282 and thus to move the locking slides 240 and 242 into engagement with the conveyor R. The extent of the high portion of plate cam 284 is such that the conveyor R will be unlocked just prior to termination of leftward movement of the carriage K.

The operation of the various modifications of the present invention has been set forth in the course of the detailed description of such modifications. The use of the conveyor which has intermittently and continuously moving portions is obviously not confined to mechanism for filling and closing bags. The value of the invention lies in the ability to present articles stationarily in groups to certain operating units of a machine and to move the articles continuously through other portions of the machine where they may be manipulated in any desired manner while moving. From the detailed description it will be apparent that various mechanisms have been provided embodying and accomplishing the objects of the present invention. The terms used are intended to be descriptive rather than limiting and it will be understood that modifications and variations may be adopted by those skilled in the art without departing from the scope of the appended claims.

We claim:

1. In an article handling device, an endless flexible conveyor movable for carrying a succession of articles along a predetermined path, a plurality of article manipulating units arranged in spaced relation lengthwise along a zone of said conveyor path, means for driving a portion of aid conveyor step by step through said zone to stationarily present successive groups of articles on said conveyor in operative relation to the units in said zone for simultaneous operation upon the articlesat said units and for driving another portion of said conveyor and the articles thereon continuously and uninterruptedly through a second operating zone of said article handling device, and means movable into and out of engagement with said conveyor for locking said said firstnamed portion of said conveyor against movement during operation of said units upon the articles presented thereto.

2. In an article handling device, an endless flexible conveyor movable for carrying a succession of articles along a predetermined path, a plurality of article manipulating units spaced lengthwise along a zone of said conveyor path, said units being divided into groups each having a plurality of units therein and each group comprising an operating station, means for driving a portion of said conveyor step by step through said zone to stationarily present successive groups of articles on said conveyor to the stations within said zone in operative relation to the units within said station for simultaneous operation upon the articles at said units and for driving another portion of said conveyor and the articles thereon continuously and uninterruptedof engagement with said conveyor for locking said first-named portion of said conveyor against movement during operation of said units upon the articles presented thereto.

3. In an article handling device, an endless flexible conveyor movable through a closed path, a plurality of article carriers carried by said conveyor in positions equally spaced throughout the length thereof, a plurality of units in a first zone of said article handling device for performing identical operations simultaneously upon the articles carried by a plurality of said carriers, said units being spaced lengthwise along a portion of the path of said conveyor and the spacing between adjacent units being equal to the spacing between adjacent article carriers on said conveyor, means for driving the portion of said conveyor extending adjacent said units step by step in increments equal to the sum of the distances between a plurality of said article carriers greater by one than said plurality of units and for maintaining said portion of said conveyor stationary during operation of said units, said driving means driving another portion of said conveyor continuously through a second zone of said article 14 ing means into locking engagement with said chain in timed relation to the reciprocation of said carriage.

handling device, and means movable into and out of engagement with said conveyor for locking the portion of said conveyor within said first zone against linear movement relative to the units within said zone during operation of said units.

4. In an article handling device, a main frame; a carriage mounted for reciprocation relative to said main frame; a conveyor including an endless flexible chain and movable through a closed path, at least a part of said conveyor being carried by and movable with said carriage; a plurality of article carriers carried by said conveyor in positions equally spaced throughout the length thereof; a plurality of units in a zone of said article handling device for performing identical operations simultaneously upon the articles carried by a plurality of said carriers, said units being spaced lengthwise along a portion of said conveyor carried by said carriage and the spacing between adjacent units being equal to the spacing between adjacent article carriers on said conveyor; means for reciprocating said carriage in directions parallel to the path of travel of the portion of said conveyor within said zone; means for driving aid conveyor; locking means mounted on said main frame and movable into engagement with said chain to hold the portion of said conveyor within said zone against linear movement relative to said main frame; and means for moving said lock- 5. In an article handling device, a main frame, a carriage mounted for horizontal reciprocation relative to said main frame, sprockets carried by said carriage, a driving chain extending around said sprockets, a driving sprocket carried by said main frame, means for rotating said driving sprocket at constant angular speed, said driving chain extending from said first-named sprockets into driving engagement with said drivin sprocket, an endless flexible conveyor carried by said carriage, said conveyor having a portion of its path extending parallel to the directions of reciprocation of said carriage, means drivingly connecting said conveyor with said driving chain, and means for reciprocating said carriage for altering the linear speed of said portion of said conveyor.

6. In an article handling device, a main frame, a carriage mounted for horizontal reciprocation relative to said main frame, power means carried by said main frame, a vertical shaft carried by said main frame and driven by said power means at a constant angular speed, a sprocket fixed to said vertical shaft, a pair of vertical idler shafts rotatably mounted in said carriage, a sprocket fixed to each of said idler shafts, a driving chain extending around said first-named sprocket and said second-named sprockets, said second-named sprockets being so arranged that a straight run of chain from one of said sprockets to the other lies parallel to the direction of reciprocation of said carriage, an endless flexible conveyor carried and driven by said idler shafts and having two straight runs parallel to the direction of reciprocation of said carriage, and means for reciprocating said carriage whereby one run of said flexible conveyor will move at a variable linear speed while the other run thereof will move at a constant linear speed.

HOWARD G. ALLEN.

GEORGE E. GAMPP.

REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,513,837 Lufkin Nov. 4, 1924 2,369,540 Delamere Feb. 13, 1945 2,409,341 Borg Oct. 15, 1946 2,497,586 Coons Feb. 14, 1950

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Classifications
U.S. Classification198/343.1, 198/792, 139/7.00C, 141/167
International ClassificationB65B43/42, B65B43/52
Cooperative ClassificationB65B43/52
European ClassificationB65B43/52