US 2561828 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
y 24, 1951 I... w. SPRINGSTEEN 2,561,828
VENDING MACHINE Filed Feb. 20, 1950 s Sheets-Sheet 1 iIILiIr INVENTOR BY ATTORNEYS m} A no.
L. W. SPRINGSTEEN July 24, 1951 VENDING MACHINE 3 Sheets-Sheet? Filed Feb. 20, 1950 INVENTOR law ATTORNEYS J y 24, 1951 w. SPRINGSTEEN 2,561,828
VENDING MACHINE Filed Feb. 20, 1950 3 sheets sheet 5 ATTORNEYS Patented July 24, 1951 Luther W. Springsteen, Binghamton, N. Y.., assignor of one-half to James M. Hardy and onehalf to Magdalene L. Quinn, both of Bingham ton, N. Y.
Application February 20, 1950, Serial No. 145,260
Claims. (Cl. 312-87) This invention relates to vending machines and more particularly to a machine having particular utility in the vending of unwrapped frozen food products such as ice cream cones.
In the vending machine art certain basic problems are always present and these problems are mitigated or aggravated to some extent by the nature of the articles to be sold. Thus, in the selling of cigarettes or other such wrapped arti-'- cles; the problems encountered in designing a satisfactory vending machine are mitigatedto a considerable extent due to the fact thatwide latitude of storage temperature conditions is possible, the articles themselves are not sensitive to position and are rugged enough to coact with machine parts. Furthermore, cigarettes, being wrapped, greatly reduce the effort which is required to maintain sanitary conditions.
On the other hand, inthe vending of an unwrapped frozen food such as an ice cream cone, it is absolutely essential that the machine'be ac eessible for easy and convenient cleansing, be reliable in'operation under low-temperature conditions, be capable of operation wholly independently' qfj the articles to be sold and also bejcapahle 4 of protecting those articles against mechanical damage before sale.
It is with thesolution of the latter type of prob 1cm, that the present invention is primarily con cerned and it is therefore an object of this invention to provide a vending machine in which a largenumber of ice cream cones or the like can be. stored under ideal conditions of refrigeration and mechanical support until dispensed to the cusamer.
It is a further objectof this invention. to provide. dispensing or vending units which mayf'be combined in groups within a single refrigerating cabinetin such manner that the units may be individually removed from the cabinet for cleaning or maintenance.
According to the present invention. it is proposedv to provide a storage conveyor so arranged that it may be actuated by operation of a transparent door under the control of a coin lock so that the sales advantage of visual access to the contents of the machine. is achieved. I
Qther objects, and. advantages. of this invention will be. apparent, upon consideraton of the follow mg detailed description of a. preferred embodimerit thereof in conjunction with the annexed drawingswherein: T
Figure 1 is a perspective view of a typical com; mercial installation of agroup-of dispensingnia of the type of; the present invention j l Figure 2 is a top plan view: of a single dispensing machine'according' to the present invention;
Figure 3 is afragmentary top plan view to an enlarged scale of the dispensing end of the machine of Figure 1, some parts being broken away for convenience of illustration;
Figure 4 is a View partially in section along the line 4--4T'of Figure 3 and partially in side elevation;
Figure 5 is a view partially in section and partially in side elevation of the filling end of the machine of Figure 3; v
Figure 6 is a view partially in side elevation and partially in section along the line 6-8 of Figure 3 of the dispensing end of themachi'ne, the dispensing doorbeing shown in open position;
Figure 7 is an end view of the machine taken from the dispensing end along the line 1-1 of Figure 3; p
Figure 8 is a view in section taken on the line 8 B'ofFi'gure3; and,
' Figure 9 is a view in section taken on the line 9+9 of Figure3. V i-Before discussing the drawings in detail, a broad summary of thegeneral mode of operation is [helpful to an understanding of the various structural features embodied in the machine. Basically, each dispensing unit comprises a conveyor lfl adapted to support articles to be dis pensed and to advance said articles intermittentl-y toward an access door ll in response to each operation of that door. The opening of the door iscoin controlled and the-particular coin controlling apparatus shown at l2 forms no partof this invention but is'merely exemplary of one typeof coin control apparatus which may be used. The actual advance of the conveyor ID is effected upon the closing of the door I I" by'the release of energy which is stored in a spring l3 incident to theopening of the door. The door H is provided with a sight window [4 and visual access toan article tobe dispensed is therefore possible.
' so that the conveyor can be conveniently filled with articles to be dispensed, the whole machine is mounted on groups of paired rollers l5 and I6,
see Figures 2, s and 9, coacting with tracks 1| 1 and t8. By this expedient the entire machine can be.
withdrawn from the cabinet in which it is. located sothat the conveyor can be conveniently cleaned Now referring more specifically to the drawings and in particular to Figure 1. thereof, a reand economical to refrigerate.
Throughback" doors in the cabinet I9, one associated with each unit, individual access to each conveyor is possible, the particular conveyor to be refilled or serviced being withdrawn by use of r the roller-track arrangement previously mentioned.
Since all of the machines With'which the cabinet is equipped may be alike, reference can now be made to a particular machine and an understanding of its details of construction will afford an understanding of all of the machines or units with which the cabinet I9 is provided.
The conveyor [6 of the machine of Figure -2 is comprised of a large number of individual sheet metal-plates 20 each provided with marginal integ'ral ferrules interdigitating todefine space for pins 2| which connect the plates-together in ar-. ticulated fashion. Each metal plate is provided with a central aperture at 22 for the accommodaw tion of the article to be dispensed and through which the conveyor advancing mechanism oper- I and 9. The bases of the'U-shaped brackets are fastened to a base plate 30 to which unit supporting channels I! and i8 are also attached.
The channels I! and i8 ride between thepaired rollers l5 and it which in turn are supportedby' elongated brackets 3| and 32,-see Figures 8 and 9.
The brackets 3i and 32 haveaper tures therein' ,through which the paired rollers l5 and I6 pass to bear against the inner shanks ,of ,U section tracks 33 and 34, respectively. The tracks;, 33 and 34 are suitably supported in the cabinet H! by any convenient'means, not shown. It will be recognized that the specific Wheel and track ar-1 rangement' involving parts to is, inclusive,j
and 3| to 34, inclusive, is well known in the file V cabinet art. 7
Having now described the general mounting of themachine in the supporting cabinet, further details-of the conveyor; Ill and the mounting means therefor may be considered. At opposite endsof the conveyor 16 and oneach side-of it there are mounted ball bearing guiding rollers 35, 36, and 38. The rollers 35 and 36, atthe dispensing end of the machine, are supported onbrackets 39 and 40, respectively, which are, in turn, mounted on the vertical shanks of the U bracket 21 ,see Figures 4 and 8:. H The guiding rollers 38 are similarly supportedfrom brackets 41, only one of which shows in the drawingasee Figure 5. The brackets M are attached to and extend from the vertical shanks of the U- brack et 26. The lower run of the conveyor is not assoc1ated with guiding rollers except for the rollers Me which are attached near the; base of the bracket 28 on opposite sides of the conveyor, see Figure 9.] v
The lower run of the conveyor m is spaced from thefioor 30 by a pair of stationary guide bars30a wh1ch' can best be seen'in Figure 9'. The guidemounted a metal supporting plate ,2 which ex tends'for nearly the full width of the floor plate 36 lengthwise of the machine between the U brackets 21 and 28, see Figure 4. Most of the mechanism for advancing and holding the conveyor'is mounted on this plate 42. Basically, this mechanism comprises the operating tension spring l3, which is anchored at one end by a pin 43 to the floor 30, an operating link it, a lever 45 and an operating rod 46.
The operating link 44 includes a dog 4! which is arranged to engage the portion of a plate 26 which defines the central aperture at 22. The
dog is connected through an integral flat metal tape 48 to the unanchored end of the spring 45. A small guidingehannel 49 fastened to the plate 42 serves to guide the dog 41 in its movements to be hereinafter more fully described. 7
It can now be seen that the spring l3, under tension, biases the dog ll to the left of Figures 3 and 4 and will cause movement of the lower run of the conveyor [6 in that direction unless it is otherwise prevented. a It is also apparent that pulling the lever 46 to the right of- Figures3 and 4;
will not cause the dog 4'! to displace the lower run of the conveyor, since movement on the partof link 44 to the right of the position of Figures 3 and 4 merely advances the dog M from the position shown in Figure 3 to a similar position in respect to the next plate 26 to the right on the lowerrun of the conveyor. V V i Movement of the link 44 to the right of the Figure 3 position is, as stated above, accomplished through movement of rod Maud lever 45. Lever is mounted for pivotal movement at one of its ends by a pin 56 At the other end a pivoted.
boss 55 receives the end of the rod 44 which is held by a set screw 52.; A stop fit is bolted to the bottomplate 42 and this stop serves'to limit the movement of the lever 45 ina counterclockwise direction as it'is viewed in Figure 3,, Movement, in a clockwise directionis limitedby astop 54 which is also fastened to the bottom plate 42 and which provides a bearing 55'-' for the pivot shaft of acam' 56 which is thus "mounted for movement about a horizontal axis. g Between the pivoted boss 51 and the. ,-pivot point 50, the lever 451s provided with a pivotally-- mounted boss 51 which receives oneend of the rod 46which is held in position by a set screw 58-. A small guiding bracket 59 acts to guide the left-- hand end of the rod 46 as it is viewedin Figures.
The rod 46 between its door-actuated end;
which has not yet been described, and the en'dwhich is connected to the pivoted boss 51, is pro on the rod 46 and carrying a pin 6| acting in bars 30a rest onlongitudinally extending spacer.
an actuatingslot 62. within the cam 56, seam.
particular Figures 3 and 4. It can now be, seenthat when the rod 46 is in thefull line position of Figure '3, the right-hand end of the cam 56.
coacts with the aperture-defining edgesof one of the conveyor plates 20 to lock the loweriruni.
Figure 3 which is caused by movement of the rod 46 to: the right of the Figure 3 position by,
opening the door II, the pin 6| acting inthe groove 62 raises the left-hand end of the cam 56 as it is viewed in Figure 4 and depresses the right-hand or looking end so that the lower run of the conveyor is conditioned for movement from'right to left as viewed in Figure 3. When On t e floor plate 36 of the machine there is the rod 46 moves to theleftof Figure 3 under the action offspring I3, the pin 6+ ridingin the groove 62" of the cam 56moves the right-hand end of the cam lit to locking position at the end of the stroke of the dogso that each stroke of the dog ilaccurately positionsthe con veyor by preventing overtravel. In this regardattention is directedtothe coaction of therighthand; end of the cam 55 with theaper-ture-defining edge of the plates to. See and compare Figures 4 and 6.
The rod 45 is actuated by opening and shutting the door and to this end it is provided with asleeve G3 which is locked in position by a set screw 64. This; sleeve 53 receives thrust from a block 65 which is mounted to slide on therod 46 and is freely pivoted' between a pair of arms GB-and 61 at one end thereof. The'pair-of' arms 66 and 61 are pivotally connectedat theother end thereof by a pin The pin- 58 connects the arms to an ear d9 which is integral withan L-shaped bracket til, one end of which is permanently fastened to the inner bottom frame or the door H. The L-shaped bracket at the right angle bend thereoi is made of interd-igitating parts which are held together by a pin ii in the nature of a cotter pin which can be easily extracted to" free the entire assembly from the door when the mechanism is to be withdrawn from the back. end: of' the cabinetiior refilling or rv c g.- v v v i Itcan now be seen that when the door is opened the L- shaped bracket'iil acting through the integral ear til pulls the pin- 58 which, throughwthe arms 56 and; Git, pulls the bloclafij which bears against the sleeve 63 and causes the rod it to move to the right of the Figure 3 position. When the door isclosed, the block" 65 moves away rromthe sleeve 63; and permits the spring is to advance the conveyor a. distance equal to the length of one of its component plates 20. The remainder of the undescribed mechanism relates to the mechanism for locking the door and that mechanism will now be described.
When a coin is applied to the check control apparatus l2, see Figure 8, a rod 12 is caused to project vertically downwardly from the bottom of the check control assembly. This rod, in projecting, engages one end of a lever '13 which is pivoted at 74 between its ends to the standards 15. The end of the lever l3 remote from the rod '12 is provided with paired teeth iii which coact with dogs Tl which are. mounted on the arm 66. A pin i317, serves to limit the downstroke of the end of the lever it which is provided with the teeth iii. Vhen the right-hand end of the lever 13 is pushed down, as it is viewed in Figure 7, the left-hand end disengages the teeth iii from the dogs 1'! whereby the door I I is released to be opened. In this regard note that the door H is provided with hinges 18 at the bottom edge and with a spring 19 for normally biasing the door H to a closed position.
Also incident to the opening of the door I l is the actuation of a lock acting on the sleeve 63. This lock is comprised of a lever 80 pivoted at 8|, see Figure 8, and locking element 82 projecting from the lower edge of the lever. The lever 8i! operates in front of guiding blades 89a and 8% which project upwardly from the bottom plate 62. The supporting structure which supports the dogs 1? from the frame 66 also includes a cam 83 which acts on the underside of the lever $9 to raise the same as the door is closed and toflowe-r" the same as the door-- is opened; Thus, as the door-is opened, thelsleeve 63-engages the beveled underface of the locking element 82 and raises thelever tll t'oa height sufiicient to permit the sleeve 63 to passunderneath the locking element 82. Immediately after: the sleeve 63 passes under the locking element 82; the latter falls to a locked position in respect-do the sleeve which it keeps until the cam 83 acts thereon almost at the completion or'thecl'osing oi the door. Due, to the delayed action of the-cam t3; the door is just about on tire'ly closed: before the conveyor is actuated so thatthe next of the articlestoibe dispensed is not-brought into position where it could: be removed until the dogs 1317 have already engaged with the toothilfiwto prevent. the doorfr'om being' openedagainwithout first inserting another com In order that thecustomer opening the door H shall? not be apprised of the number of items contained on! the upper run of" the conveyona gateis provided at the right end of the. upper run: of-'the conveyor-between the itemin a positionto be dispensed. and the next item time behind. on the upper, run. The gate can best be understood by concurrent reference to Fig ures 3- and. 6.. It comprises a. pair; at doors 8.4 and; 8.5:. which. are connected by; hinges. 86, and 8] to supporting brackets 88 and that are supported from the sidev ot the machine. These doors; are; lightly spring urged to closed position but. can be easily opened'inafyorwarddirection as the article to be dispensed is drawn there through incident. to operation of the conveyor. In this regard. see the springs lit: and 91, as they show Figure 'l.
It will be observed that. when thecam so i m the Eigurefi position, which is the position. which it assumeswh n the do r. My is Opened, th onveyor is free to move. This freedom, if discovered by a customer, could result in the emptying of the entire machine by payment of a single coin. Consequently, a lock is provided comprised of pins 92 and 93 which extend upwardly from the sup porting bracket 94 which is fastened to a lever 95 which is pivoted at 96 to rail 25. A spring 91, extending in tension between the rail 25 and another portion of the lever 95, normally biases the lever to the Figure 6 position, at which time the pins 92 and 93 project through the apertures 22a of a. conveyor link 20 to hold the conveyor against movement. So that the conveyor may be released for movement when the door is shut, a projecting portion 98 of the lever 95 lies in position to be engaged by a projection 99 fastened to and extending from the door. See and compare Figures 4 and 6. A shield I00 extends across the lower face of the conveyor at the dispensing end to prevent tampering with the operating apparatus.
It will be understood that the projection 99 acts sufiiciently in advance of thelocking element 82 so that the pins 92 and 93 are already withdrawn from the conveyor before the locking element 82 releases the sleeve 83. An additional and secondary function of the pins 92 and 93 is to restrain the doors 84 and 85 against opening when the main door I I is open. This feature can best be understood by reference to Figures 3 and 6 in which it will be observed that the pins 9l2 and 93 in their upper position project through the plates 20 in front of the doors 84 and 85.
Although this invention has been described with respect to but a single embodiment thereof,
modifications may be made-within the spirit and scope of the invention.
1. A vending machine comprising a cabinet, a
conveyor in said cabinet, spaced article supportingmeans on said conveyor, a spring, means actuated by said spring to advance said conveyor in increments equal to the spacing between adjacent article supporting means, a door in said cabinet afiording access to one only of said article supporting means and means responsive to the opening of the door to store energy in said, spring and means responsive to the closing of said door to cause said spring to actuatesaid conveyor.
2. A vending machine comprising a cabinet, a conveyor in said cabinet, spacedarticle supporting means on said conveyor, a spring, means actuated'by said spring toadvancesaid conveyor in increments equal to the spacing between adjacent article supporting means, a door in said cabinet affording access to one only of said article supporting means, door controlled means for storing energy in said spring in response to opening of the door, for locking said spring against action.
in response to the attainment of full open position of said door and for releasing said spring to act upon the completion of the closing, of said door.
3. Avending machine comprising a cabinet, a conveyor horizontally disposed in said cabinet, a door in said cabinet affording access to one end of said conveyor, said conveyor being comprised of articulated links each "having an article supporting cavity therein, a dog device movable from a first position engaging the defining edge of a link of the lower run of the conveyor to a second position in engaging relationship to that link of the lower run of the conveyor next adjacent in Number the direction of the door, a limiting device for preventing overtravel of the conveyor, said limiting device being movable from a first position restraining conveyor travel to a second conveyor releasing position, a spring normally biasing said devices to their respective first positions, means responsive to opening of the door for moving said devices to their respective first positions and door actuated means to hold said devices in their second positions until the door is substantially closed whereupon the spring restores the devices to their first position and advances the conveyor one link.
4. A vending machine as claimed in claim 1 further comprising means to lock the. conveyor against movement, a second spring biasing said conveyor locking means toward locking position, and means responsive to the closure of the door to hold said locking means in unlocked position against the bias of said second spring.
5. A vending machine as claimed in claim 3 further comprising link engagingmeans to lock the conveyor against movement, a second spring biasing said locking means to link engaging'position, and means responsive to closure of the door less complete than that required to restore the devices to their first position for holding said REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Name Date 1,181,590 Gresham May 2, 1916 1,205,344 Berry Nov. 21, 1916 2,137,822 Gilmore Nov. 22, 1938 2,446,738 Rifkin Aug. 10, 1948 2,496,304 Mufily Feb. 7, 1950