US 2665791 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan. 12, 1954 M. CARUSO COMBINATION COIN.CONTROL Original Filed Dec. 26, 1946 3 Sheets-Sheet l INVENTOR Mew (Air/J0.
ATTORNEY Original Filed Dec. 26, 1946 Jan. 12, 1954 M. CARUSO 2,665,791
COMBINATION COIN CONTROL' 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 INVENTOR MIIQ/a 6421/.1'0.
ATTORNEY Patented Jan. 12, i954 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE 2,665,791 COMBINATION coin CONTROL Mario Caruso, Maplcwood; N Q J assignor to c-Eight Laboratories, Newark, N. J.
Original application Decembergij, 1946, Serial No.
718,529. Divided and this application Deceniher 1947, SiiaLlNo. 790,844
2 Claims. 1
This invention relates broadly to coin-open ated vending machines, and especially to a mechanism controlled by coins inserted in such vending machine, and represents one of the divisions or a co-pehdi-ng application Serial No.
718,529 for Vending Machine, filed by applicant ,eration of said unit, a" coin retainer for ternporarily holding coins passed through the coin defining unit and a coin release operative by a suitable mechanism for automatically discharg ing' coins from" the retainer into a coin receptacle in payment for m handise delivered by the machine, and whereinmeans are provided for manually operating s'uc'li coin release for the purpose of returningcoins when a purchase of merchandise is not" desired.
A further object of this invention is to provide in a coin control for vending machines a coin defining unit adapted for the reception and thepassage therethrough of coins deposited in the machine, and which coin defining unit is equipped with a plurality of individual switches, each having at least one movable resilient switch member, and'with which latter member abuts a pivotally suspendeddielectric actuating element or cam against which normally bears said resilient switch member, thereby holding the cam in inoperative position, and from which cam there extends a lever arm into passages provided in the coin defining unit for coins passed theretlirough, and which lever arm is disposed in the path'of such dropping coinsand is adapted to be momentarily depressed and to immediately revert to its original position, whereby said cam is momentarily operated and causes the; closing of its respective switch and the immediateopening thereof when the cam reverts to its normalposition.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a coin counter electrically connected with the coin defining unit and which coin counter is; adapted to be operated'eachtime one of the switches 01% the coin-defining unitisaclosed erated in one direction by a 2; by a. dropping coin, said coin counter being adaptedto compute the number of coins or coin units passing through the coin defining unit and to close certain electric circuits, independent of the circuits connecting the defining unit with the coin counter, depending upon the amount of coins passed through the defining unit, said in-E ependent circuits controlling the price of the different merchandise and the release from the vending machine of the merchandise.
A further object of this invention is to provide, in conjunction with a coin defining unit, a coin retainer provided with a coin release, and which release is 'adapted to b'eautomatically 0p; driven mechanism of the machine for depositing coins in a coin receptacle when merchandise is delivered from to be electrically operated in the machine and I opposite direction by amanual control forthe purpose of returning coins from the machine.
when no purchase ofmerchandise is desired! The foregoing and numerous other objects and additional advantages of the present invention will be more specifically evident from the ensuing description in conjunction withthe accompanying drawings, wherein:
Fig. l is an elevation of a portion of a vending machine disclosing a coin defining unit with the exterior wall of the nickel guide channel partly removed, a coin retainer and a coin release;
Fig. 2 is an elevation of the dime guide portion of the coin definingunit;
iiigiB is a fragment'altop view of the coin re f tamer, partly in section, taken on line 33 of Fig. l
Fig. 4 is an end elevation of a complete coin" defining unit and including the coin retainer and coin release, shown partly invertical sec-' tion;
Fig. 5 is a diagrammatical illustration of the electric connections between the coin defining unit, the coin counter and the coinrele'ase, including price-controlling circuits governed by the coin counter;
Fig. 6 is a front elevation of the coin counter disclosing a portion of the manually operative coin return mechanism and the upper; corre the coin defining-'- unit, while numeral H 3 cates the coin retainer and numeral I 2 the coin release. The coin defining unit IE3, as shown in Figs. 1, 2 and 4, is composed of two adjacent sections of which the outer section I3 is designed for the reception of one coin denomination, such.
as a nickel, while the rear section 14 is intended for the reception of another coin denomination, such as a dime. Each of these sections is provided with an independent coin-receiving and coin-guiding channel i5 and 46, respectively, as clearly seen in Figs. 1 and 2, through which pass coins deposited in the vending machine until they emerge at the bottom and fall into coin retainer ll. Channels l5 and 16 have side enlargements ll, 18 and 58', respectively, the purpose of which will become presently evident.
Exteriorly to front section it for the reception of nickels there will be seen a two-pronged switch mounting it, having a relatively stationary contact member 29 and a movable contact member 2|, both members being resilient. In abutment with contact member 2% is a cam 22 provided with a fiat surface 3 against which latter contact member 2! exerts pressure, thus retaining the cam in its normal position indicated in Fig. 1. Cam 22 is pivotally mounted at 24 in a bracket 25 which is adjustably suspended at 26. By adjusting and thereupon fixedly positioning bracket 25, not only the amount of pressure exerted by contact member 2! against cam 22 may be altered, but also the proximity to one another of contact members so and 2E, and thus the setting of their contact points at desired distances is facilitated. The proper cooperation between cam 22 and contact member 2 I, the amount of pressure exerted by the latter against the cam, and the correct distancing of the contact points governs the sensitivity, the speed and the exactness in operation, in short, the overall efiiciency f the coin-defining unit. Extending from cam 22 at substantially right angles to the cams flattened surface 23 is a lever arm 21, which projects into channel 55 in the vicinity of channel enlargement i'i. Lever arm 2'! is disposed in the path of coins dropping through channel [5. A dropping coin is indicated in broken lines at 23 in Fig. 1. When a coin, such as a nickel, is caused to drop through channel i and reaches enlargement ii, it depresses lever arm 21 whereby cam 22 is so tilted that the lower end of its flat surface 23 moves switch contact 2| against switch contact it] until their contact points abut. The passage of the coins through the channel of course is a rather rapid one. Thus when lever arm 2? is depressed by the coins weight, such depression is momentary, and immediately after the coin has passed arm 21, contact 2| causes cam 22 to immediately revert to its normal position shown, whereby the contact points become separated. Enlargement 11 provided in channel i5 is designed to facilitate the operation of lever arm 2? when momentarily depressed by a dropping coin, and provides clearance for the coin on its way into coin receiver II. The moment the coin passes lever arm 2'1, the latter immediately reverts to its normal, horizontal position, toward side enlargement 11.
Fig. 2 illustrates the dime receiving section of the coin defining unit. Channel it, in which a dime is indicated at 28, is enlarged at two places I8 and i8. Secured to dime receiving section 14 are two switch mountings 2t and 39 from which depend, respectively, relatively stationary switch members 3! and 32, and movable members 33 and 34. With these latter switch members abut cams 35, constructed in the same manner as cams 22, and being held in their normal, full line positions by the resiliency of movable switch members 33 and 34. They are again pivotally mounted at 24 in brackets 25, which are adjustably secured at 25 to dime receiving section 14. Extending from cams 35 are lever arms 36 which project into guide channel l6 opposite enlargements l8 and I8. The operation of lever arms 35, cams 35 and switch members 33 and 34 is the same as described in connection with Fig. 1, with the exception that when a dime is inserted it has to pass two cam-operating arms 36, whereby switches 29 and 3B are successively closed and opened, one after the other.
It is to be noted that channels 55 and [6 of the nickel and dime receiving sections in the coin denoting unit approximately correspond to the dimensions of the respective coins, whereby a more positive action of the switches and a more accurate identification of the coins falling through the channels is effected, as compared with similar devices having but a single, onedimensional passage for coins of different denominations.
C'oin retainer and coin release Referring again to Figs. 1, 3 and 4, coin retainer H comprises a funnel-shaped structure which is open at the top as well as at the bottom. The bottom opening is kept normally closed by a swinging closure 3i. This closure comprises a perforated disc 38, hinged at 39 and counter balanced by a weight 4%, provided with a stop element 48'. This weight normally retains disc 38 in closing position as shown in Figs. 3 and 4. However, when one coin or several coins are placed upon disc 38, the added weight causes the disc to automatically swing downwards, there by releasing the coins, whereupon the disc immediately reverts to its normal closing position.
Below disc 38 there is pivotally mounted at 4! a coin-directing vane 42 which is normally held in vertical position directly beneath disc 38. Vane 42 is preferably provided with an antifriction roller 43, which, when the vane is at an. upright position, will engage the bottom face of disc 38, thus preventing the latter from tilting downwardly even though coins may rest thereon. The vane is adapted to swing within a limited arc in either of two directions, its swinging movement being induced by a specially designed mechanism, the construction and operation of which will be presently described. The function of the vane, when operated, is to first release disc 38 supporting coins dropped thereon and then to direct the released coins either into a coin receptacle in payment for merchandise, or into a chute for the return of coins when the purchase I Of merchandise is not desired.
The mechanism for operating vane 42 consists V of a substantially T-shaped lever structure 44 pivotally supported at 45 at the exterior of the coin defining unit. The depending long lever portion 44 has a bifurcated end 46 which engages a pin 4'! extending from vane 42 through an arcuated slot 41. From the pivot of lever structure 44 there project two side arms 48 and 49, arm 48 constituting an armature for a soleand for guiding and directing them into the coin return of the machine. Lever arm 49 is held in a substantially horizontal, balanced position between two pivoted auxiliary or balancing arms 5! which are urged towards each other and against arm 49 by a tension spring52 mounted between pins 53, which latter bear against lever arm 49, thus holding the lever 44 in its normal, inactive, vertical position indicated.
When, after delivery of purchased merchandisc, the coins in payment therefor are to be retained by the machine, vane 42 must be -operated to deliver coins into a coin receptacle. In order to accomplish that, thevane must be swung in left hand or anti-clockwise direction. It first releases the coins from platform 33, causing them to drop onto the vane, which latter then directs the coins into a coin box. This anti-clockwise movement of the vane i-s producedby the clockwise movement of lever 54. That movement of the lever is induced automatically by a' power driven mechanism which is a part of the vending machine and which operates -a bell crank 54, pivoted at 55. From the end of the shorter bell crank arm extends a pin 56 adapted to engage the depending leg 44 of lever 44, when the longer arm of bell crank 54 is swung by the mechanism in upward direction, as indicated by the arrow I. Lever 44 is thus swung in left-hand or clockwise direction, and causes vane 42 to swing to the left. When bell crank 54 is released by the power driven mechanism, it will revert to its normal position shown in Fig. 1, thus causing lever -44 to also assume its normal vertical position. Bell crank 54 is held in its normal, inactive position by a suitable supporting pin 51 extending from the casing of the coin adding unit. The power driven mechanism for operating bell crank 5 1 is diagrammatically and only fragmentally indicated at 54 in Figs. 5 and 6.
Coin counter Referring to'Figs. '5, 6 and '7, the coin counter comprises a disc-shaped, dielectric rotary member 58 provided at a portion of its outer periphery with a plurality of ratchet teeth 59. It is jour- 'naled on a pin or shaft .60, about which latter is wound a coil spring 6| so engaging rotary member 58 as to induce it to normally turn in anticlockwise direction. Set into the dielectric material of the rotary member is a contact plate 62 which is adaptedto move beneath a plurality of individual contact elements 63, 64, 64' and 64" as member 5'8 rotates in anti-clockwise direction, propelled:by spring 6!, thus successively establishing electric connections between contact elements 63, 64, 64 and 64". The purpose and function of these contact elements will be disclosed presently.
Normally in engagement with ratchet teeth 59 there is an escapement structure 65 pivoted at 66 and being provided at its left end with a tooth "engaging element 61, and at its right end with a toothstop element GB. The right end of the structure is connected at 5'9 with-the armature 15 of solenoid H. A spring I2 urges left element 5'! normally out of engagement with one of the ratchet teeth 59, while right element 68 prevents rotation of member 56. Extending through and beyond rotary member 58 is a pin 13. This pin is engaged at the rear of member 58 by a slotted connecting or operating bar 14, which latter is mounted under tension of spring 15 in a bracket 16, which is pivotally connected at 11 with a bell crank lever 18, journaled at 19 and is adapted to be manually actuated in the direction of the arrow.
Pin 13 of rotary member 58 has for its function to facilitate the rotation of member 58 in clockwise direction, against th tension ofspring 6i, and, when thus operated manually, to close 8. normally open switch mounted in. front of rotary member 58. The clockwise movement of that member is caused by an upward movement of bar 14 effected either by a manual or an automatic mechanical operation of bell crank 18, such mechanical operation being induced by power driven mechanism 54', however, the operation of bar 14 by mechanism 54" is insufficient to rotate member 58 far enough to close switch 80.
Referring-now to Fig. 5, this illustration-represents a wiring diagram showing the electric connections between the coin defining unit and the coin counter. It will be observed that all exterior blades 20, 3| and 32 of coin defining unit switches I9, 29 and 30 are interconnected with one another. Likewise all interior switch blades 2|, 33 and 34 are similarly connected. Lead 8| from the outer switch blades passes to coin return solenoid 50 and from there to one terminal of the sourceof energy. Lead 82 passes from the interior switch blades to coin countersoleno'id H and from there to the other terminal of the electric source. A lead-83 connects leads 8| with one of the switch blades of coin return release switch 80, while the other switch blade is connected with lead 82 extending from solenoid 1|.
Contact element 63 of the coin counter is connected by lead 84 to lead 82, while contacts 64,64" and 64" are connected by means of a merchandise price setting device, indicated by a circle -85,
through leads 86, 81 and 8B with lead 8|.
operation When coins are deposited in the vending machine and drop through the coin defining unit, they actuate lever arms '21 and 36 and temporarily close and immediately open switches I9, 29 and 30. At the closing of any one of the three switches solenoid H becomes energized. At each electric impulse passing through the solenoid its armature causes escapement 65 to release .rotary member 58 for rotation, induced by spring 5|, one tooth at a time. Thus when a nickel is dropped through guide channel l5 of coin defining unit part l3, solenoid H becomes energized once. When a dime is inserted into channel I6 of coin defining unit part l4 and drops therethrough, solenoid II will be energized twice in succession. Thus when fifteen cents are deposited in the machine, the escapement will be actuated three times, and rotary member 58 will advance three teeth in anti-clockwise direction.
During this rotation contact plate .62 passes first beneath contact element 63 and then progresses successively beneath contact element 64, 64' and '64". At that position of rotary member 58 the circuits controlled by contact elements 64, 64' and 64" are connected and permit the operation of the vending machine to deliver a piece of merchandise priced fifteen cents, by the usual, well known means of either pulling a lever, depressing a button or the like. Such devices are not illustrated as superfluous, but their operation not only is indicative of the desire to receive the merchandise paid for, but also effects the closing of a circuit controlling the operation of the power driven mechanism 54. Thus the latter becomes energized and turns one revolution, delivers the purchased merchandise and causes the operation of bell crank arm 54, which in turn actuates coin release lever 44 in clockwise direction. This movement of lever 44 induces the coin directing vane .to swing to the left or in anti-clockwise direction, thereby releasing coin retaining disc 38 and permitting the coins resting thereon to drop against vane 42 from which it is deflected into the coin receptacle. At the same time the upper end of the mechanism 54', shown in Fig. 6, will cause the upward movement of bell crank 18, whereby connecting bar 14 engaging pin 73 will turn rotary member 58 in clockwise direction against the tension of spring BI and bring it to its normal position shown in Fig. 5.
When it is decided that the coins deposited in the machine are to be returned, bell crank 18 is manually operated, whereby connecting bar 14 is again elevated and causes rotary member 58 to turn clockwise until pin 73 closes the contacts of switch 89. By the closing of this switch coin return solenoid 50 becomes energized, attracts arm 48 of lever 44, moves that lever to the right or in anti-clockwise direction, and thereby causes vane 42 to swing to the right or in clockwise direction. That movement of vane 42 again releases coin rest disc 38, thus permitting it to swing downwardly to discharge the coins against vane 42, which latter directs the coins to a place in the bending machine from which the coins may be retrieved.
Having thus described the present invention, what is claimed as new follows:
1. A combination coin retainer and coin release mechanism, a coin-defining unit comprising a plurality of coin-operated switches, said mechanism having an operating structure comprising a solenoid, a substantially T-shaped lever formation pivotally supported from the body of said coin-defining unit and including a relatively long depending lever portion with a bifurcated end and two side lever arms extending from the pivotal point of the long lever portion, one of the lever arms constituting the armature for said solenoid and being adapted, when attracted by the energized solenoid, to swing the lever formation in one direction, the other lever arm constituting balancing means for the lever formation, and a pair of pivoted auxiliary balancing arms connected at their free ends by a tension spring and engaging the movable end of said other lever arm so that said long lever portion is normally kept in a vertical position; and a coin counter actuated by said coin-defining unit and comprising a dielectric rotary disc movable in two directions, a spring biasing the disc to turn in one direction, a dielectric pin passing through the disc and extending beyond both faces thereof, one end of the pin being engageable by manually or automatically operable re-setting means for the disc, adapted, when actuated, to re-set the disc by turning it in opposite direction, that is, against the tension of the spring, a normally open switch engageable by the other end of the pin, said switch being electrically connected with said solenoid for energizing the latter when closed manually, thereby causing the long depending lever portion to swing in that one direction;- a bell crank adapted, when operated, to engage said long lever portion and to swing the latter in opposite direction, and a power driven mechanism for automatically actuating and releasing said bell crank and said re-setting means for the coin counter.
2. A combination coin retainer and coin release structure for the use in vending machines, such machines including a coin-operated electric coin-defining unit having a plurality of coinresponsive switches and a coin counter controlled by said unit; said combination structure being associated with said unit and comprising a substantially T-shaped, pivoted lever having a de pending central bar, adapted to normally assume a vertical position, and two side arms extending from the bar and adapted to normally assume a substantially horizontal position, a balancing fixture tensionally engaging one of the side arms for retaining it and the other side arm as well as said central bar in their respective normal positions, said other side arm constituting a movable armature, a solenoid for attracting the latter and thus causing the movement of the T-shaped lever in one direction, a power-driven operating mechanism for moving the'lever in opposite direction; a coin-directing unit operable by said central bar for causing either the return or the retention of coins passed through said coin-defining unit when said lever is actuated by either said solenoid or by said operating mechanism, respectively; said coin counter having an escapement-controlled rotary disc turnable in two opposite directions and a pin projecting with both its ends beyond the opposite faces of the disc; a spring for turning the disc in one direction; means adapted to ene gage one end of said pin for turning the disc in opposite direction and being actuable either manually or automatically by said power-driven mechanism; a normally open switch in the operating path of the other end of the pin and serving, when closed, to energize said solenoid; said pin-engaging means, when manually operated, causing the pin to close said switch, thus effecting the return of coins, and, when automatically operated by said mechanism, causing the re-setting of the disc and the retention of coins, the automatic operation of said pin-engaging means being insufficient however to rotate the disc far enough to close the switch.
References Cited in the file of this patent I UNITED STATES PATENTS Number