US 2741009 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 10, 1956 G. SLAYTER ET AL 2,741,009
METHOD OF AND APPARATUS FOR THE HIGH SPEED PACKAGING OF FILAMENTARY OR STRAND-LIKE MATERIALS Filed April 4, 1951 BURNER ooooooooooo ooooooooooo Games kSlayfer INVENTORS Nor/75 C Andaman HTTORNE Y5 United States Patent METHOD OF AND APPARATUS FOR THE HEGH.
SPEED PACKAGING 0F FILAMENTARY 131% STRAND-LIKE MATERIALS Games Slayter and Morris Clement Anderson, Newark,
Ohio, assignors to Owens-CorningFibergias Corporation, Toledo, Ohio, a corporation of Delaware Application April 4, 1951, Serial No. 219,226
17 Claims. (Cl. 28-21) This invention relates to a method of and apparatus for the high speed packaging of filamentary or strand-like materials and the like.
In the production of such filamentary or strand-like mterials as, for example, spun threads of natural fibers or filaments, strands or yarns of rayon, nylon, or glass, or similar materials, after the continuous strands are produced they must be packaged in some manner to permit their subsequent use in the manufacture of textiles or other products. Usually such continuous strands are wrapped on spools or tubes by rotating the tubes or spools at a rate of'speed sufiicient to attenuate the molten glass to fibers at the necessary rate and to wrap the strand being formed onto the spool until a sufiicient length is accumulated thereon.
This system of wrapping the strand (such term being used generally) on a rotary spool has one very serious disadvantage which is particularly bad in the production of strands from materials or coated with materials, that will cause the various wraps to adhere to each other. For example, in the production of continuous strands of glass fibers, each individual fiber usually is coated with a size or other coating compound to lubricate the fibers andto prevent adjacent fibers or strands from abrading each other. The size or other coating material, if not completely dried or if subjected to substantial pressure, may adhere successive or adjacent turns of the strands to each other and seriously interfere with the subsequent unwinding, for example, in the later operation of weaving cloth or twisting cords.
When strands are wound on a rotating spool, the tension caused by attenuating the molten glass accumulates to build up a very high inward pressure on the earlier layers of the strand which squeezes the material tightly together and, if the sizing or coating substance is not thoroughly dry or impervious to such pressure, very tightly adheres one wrap to another. In a subsequent unwrapping operation some turns of the strand may fray at the point of adhesion, or it may carry the second turn oif with it which will snarl in the machine being operated. When such a snarl or frayed strand develops, the operator must replace the spool with another and the old snarled spool must either be discarded or time taken to unsnarl it. Either step is costly and wasteful.
In order partially to overcome this difliculty, strands and threads frequently are Wrapped on' spools in helical layers of substantial inclination and thus successive turns overlie each other at sharp angles to reduce the area of contact between the turns and allow the wraps or turns to break away from each other more easily. Unfortunately, however, even with this care, the strands still adhere and frequently are frayed or tangled when unwound.
This problem resulting from the wrapping of strands on the exterior of a spinning spool is encountered in the fabrication of many strand-like materials. An attempt at its solution has been made by feeding the strand into the interior of a spinning bucket so that thestrand is laid on the inner surface and held out against the surface of the bucket and the surface of the built up earlier layers by pressure no greater than the centrifugal force acting on the low mass of the material itself. Here other problems are encountered, for example, in order to package a substantial length of strand in such a bucket, with enough space at its axis to permit the introduction of the strand thereinto, the bucket must have a substantial diameter and considerable weight, and rotating such a bucket at the tremendously high speeds necessary to package a glass fiber strand, for example, is out of the question.
In considering how the problem inherent in rotating spools or buckets may be overcome, a fundamental requirement must be borne in mind. This requirement is that any stationary package for a continuous strand or filament must be so designed that the last layers of strand into the package, will be the first out of the package and that at no time will any strands overlie strands which must come out of the package first. If there is any reverse overlying snarls and tangles inevitably will result during the subsequent high speed removal of the strands for subsequent operations.
It is the principal object of this invention to provide a method for the packaging of continuous filamentary or strand-like materials such as glass fiber strands or other similar materials which are produced at very high linear speeds (for example, in the order of 10,000 feet per minute in the case of glass) in which method the disadvantages inherent in the high speed rotation of spools and buckets are eliminated.
It is another object of this invention to provide an apparatus for the packaging of continuous filamentary or strand-like materials produced at high lineal rates of speed in which reverse order overlies of strands are prevented, no built up pressure is created that tends to adhere strands to each other, and where high speed movement, rotary or otherwise, of the packaging elements is not necessary.
It is another object of this invention to provide a method of and apparatus for the packaging of continuous filamentary or strand-like materials in which the resistance of air to the passage of the linearly projected strand is employed to cause the strand to flutter as it slows down and this fluttering is relied upon for the random distribution of strands in the package and where compactness of the packaged strands is achieved by air pressure.
More specific objects and advantages will be apparent from the specification and drawings, in which:
Fig. 1 is a somewhat diagrammatic illustration of apparatus embodying the instant invention and which can be employed in the practice of the instant invention; illustrating how a glass fiber strand produced at a linear rate of, say, 10,000 feet per minute, can be packaged in a non-rotating package.
Fig. 2 is a plan view of portions of the apparatus shown in Fig. 1 and more particularly of the package in which the strand is accumulated through the practice of the instant invention, showing in general the pattern adopted by the strand in the package.
' Fig. 3 is an enlarged view of'a portion of the apparatus shown in Fig. 1.
Fig. 4 is an enlarged view in perspective with parts broken away, illustrating a modified form of package and showing how the strands are built up in such package by the practice of the instant invention.
Throughout the description which follows, the continuous filamentary or strand-like material being handled will be identified through the example of a glass fiber strand but it is to be understood that the method of packaging and the apparatus disclosed herein for carrying out the method, are equally effective when used in the packaging of any other continuous strand, filament, thread, or yarn of a similar nature, such as organic texice tile fibers, for example, cotton, silk, wool, etc, and other artificial fibers such as rayon or nylon. In this description the word 'strand" will be employed to cover not only closely grouped filaments or fibers but also similar structuressuch as monofilaments or threads, twisted cords or simply collectively handled groups of filaments, the method and apparatus constituting the instant invention being designed for the handling of any type of relatively flexible continuous filamentary or strand-like material which is to be packaged for subsequent rehandling.
In the practice of the instant invention for the packaging of glass fiber strands certain peculiarities inherent in glass material of this kind are most effectively overcome in the production of an easily handleable package of continuous strands. Glass fiber strands, as is diagrammatically shown in Fig. 1, are produced by the drawing of individual fibers of very fine diameter from streams flowing from a mass of molten glass which is contained, for example, in a tank 11 and maintained at such temperature therein as to flow through minute fiber forming orifices in a feeder or bushing 12. Similar instrumentalities may be used in the production of some other synthetic fibers such as nylon, the diameter of the fibers being formed being determined by not only the diameters of the orifices in the bushings 12 but also by the operating speeds of the devices which are used to attenuate the streams into fibers.
In the structure illustrated in Fig. l, which commonly is used in the production of glass fibers, all of the fibers 10, after they are formed, are led over a coating roller 13 so mounted as to dip into a pool of sizing or other coating material in a container 14 and to distribute the same on the surfaces of the fibers 10. A grooved roller 15 serves to gather the fibers 10 into a strand 16 which then is run between the peripheries of a pair of high speed rotary pulling rolls 17 having parallel horizontal axes and rotated to apply tensive forces to the strand to attenuate the molten glass streams to fibers and to drive the strand 16 downwardly.
The pulling rolls 17 (see more particularly Fig. 3) preferably are formed with a series of inwardly directed inclined slits 18 which separate their surfaces into successive generally segmental elements 19. In Fig. 3 the peripheral outline of the feeding rolls 17 when stationary is shown in broken lines and the position assumed by the elements 19 when the rolls are rotated to achieve a linear speed of, say, 10,000 feet per minute, is shown in solid lines. When the rolls 17 are rotated at such high speed centrifugal force causes the elements 19 to flare outwardly increasing the diameters of the rolls 17 and tightly gripping the strand 16 between their peripheral surfaces. The segmental elements 19 not only provide for the tight gripping of the strand 16 between the wheels but, as is indicated in Fig. 3 in an exaggerated manner, they also produce a whip-like effect in the strand 16 as it leaves the bight of the two rolls 17. In actuality, the flutter or whip of the strand is not anywhere near as apparent as is shown in Fig. 3 because the strand is projected at a speed of almost two miles per minute and even though its mass is low it continues in what appears to be a straight line movement for some little distance below the rolls 17.
Soon after leaving the rolls 17, however, resistance of the air to the passage of the very light strand not only accentuates the flutter introduced therein by the serrated peripheries of the rolls 17 but also causes the strand to flap or flutter in generally horizontal directions. At a distance of, say, 4 or 5 feet beneath the rolls 17, this flutter in the strand increases to such an extent that the displacement of the strand in horizontal directions may be as much as 4 to 6 or 8 inches overall.
if the strand were allowed to fall on a stationary table, for example, it would build up a pile of random swirls each of which would lie on top of all previous swirls and, if such a pile could be supported it would be satisfactory as a package because each portion of the strand later piled on the pile would be on top of each portion previously piled on the pile and the strand could be fed off the package in the reverse order of its piling. Unfortunately, of course, if the strand were merely piled up in such a manner it would collapse or topple and in so doing the earlier piled portions of the strand inevitably would tangle the later piled portions of the strand thus preventing its feeding away from the package without snarls or tangles.
The method of the instant invention contemplates the packaging of a strand being projected linearly through air at an initial speed in the neighborhood of 10,000 feet per minute in such a manner as to take advantage of the natural flutter in response to air resistance without the resulting collapse of the pile or the resulting entanglement of the strand.
At a level, say 5 or 6 feet, beneath the rolls 17, or such other distance as may be found to allow the strand 16 to slow down sufficiently to produce a flutter of the desired size, there is located a foraminous container 20 which is shown in Fig. l as consisting in a can having an open top and perforated walls and bottom. The container 20 rests on flanges 21 in an opening 22 formed in the top of a box-like enclosure 23 which is mounted on a reciprocable table 24. The table 24 rests on a plurality of rollers 25 and is linked by a connecting rod 26 to a rotary crank or flywheel 27 driven in turn by a drive pulley 28 and belt 29. High speed rotation of the flywheel 27 through the medium of the connecting rod 26 oscillates the table 24, traversing the container 20 back and forth beneath the rolls 17 to receive the strand 16. The oscillation of the table 24 is timed to cooperate with flutter of the strand induced by the air resistance so as to distribute the swirls or loops of strand more or less evenly over the bottom of the container 20. The particular form of swirl or loop on which the strand falls on the bottom of the container 20 is not important so long as there is relative lateral movement between the path of the strand and the container 20 so that successive loops or swirls always land on top of previous loops or swirls. Furthermore, the movement of the container 20 horizontally spreads the swirls or strand and allows them to form in substantially discrete horizontal layers with no later loop or swirl beneath any earlier loop or swirl.
The container 20 may be equipped with a removable, flared lip 30, illustrated as being molded from plastic, but which may be made from any smooth material, for catching any random loop or swirl that might otherwise fall over the upper edge of the container 20.
The interior of the enclosure 23 is in communication with a blower 31 or other means which creates a substantial flow of air into the open top of the container 20 and out through the perforations in its walls and bottom. This flow of air holds the loops and swirls of strand in the positions in the container into which they fall and prevents the oscillation of the container from displacing any of the loops or swirls of strand or entangling them with subsequent loops and swirls. The draft of air is of sufficient force also to tightly pack subsequently falling loops and swirls on top of previously falling loops and swirls thus compacting the strand in the package and eliminating bridging and arching which might otherwise occur by reason of the random deposition of the loops and swirls on previously laid layers of the strand. This results in a uniformly compact package whereas the strand itself has so little mass it could not be shot in the container with enough force to make the package compact. The blast of air thus prevents the catastrophic entangling and also makes the package commercially practicable by providing compactness and, therefore, a great length of strand in the container.
The strand falling into the container 20 generally assumes a pattern such as that shown in Fig. 2 where it can be seen that the strand is formed in loops and swirls progressing across the container transversely and overlying only earlier deposited strand portions. Successive traverses of the table 24 and the container 20 fill in successively falling loops and swirls of strand, gradually building up successive layers having at all times a generally flat upper surface and thus gradually filling the container 29 to a selected depth.
After the containerZtl has been filled, the blast of air has so tightly held the successive layers of loops and swirls of strands on top of previous layers, and the flutter and whip of the strand so distributed it over the surface of the container 2% and the previous layers of loops and swirls of strand, that a very dense, solidly packed mass of continuous strand fills the container 2% from its bottom to the desired level.
During this filling operation the blast of air pulled into and through the container 29 by the blower 31 also serves to suck a dame 32 from a burner 33 downwardly into the open top of the container 20 and to pull the air heated by the flame 32 through the mass of strands in the container 2 The flame not only directly. has some drying efi'ect on the sizing or coating material 14 on the strand 16 which may pass directly through the flame 32 but principally, the air heated by the flame 32 which is pulled through the mass of strand in the container 20 serves to. substantially completely dry the coating material on thesurfaceof the strand 16. There is, thus, reduced adherence between touching portions of the strand and, therefore, at no time does a strand being pulled from such a container in the course of a subsequent operation also pull with it any mass of strand out of its successive linear position. The elimination of adherence between successive loops of strand caused h I the great pressure inherent in'rotary packaging in itself eliminates almost all of the difiiculties encountered in sub sequent unwinding of the strand. 7
In the mechanism diagrammatically illustrated in Fig. l the package 20 is described as a perforated container and is well adapted for carrying out the process of the instant invention. Its essential characteristics, to enable the process to be carried out, are that it must have sufficient size to allow the strand to be projected into its interior in the swirls and loops resulting from the slowing down of the linear speed of the strand; it must have thoroughly foraminous Walls to allow the blast of air to pass freely therethrough and it must be of such size that a substantial length of strand can be accumulated within it. A further improvement over the container or package 26 shown in Fig. l is that shownin perspective and partly broken away in Fig. 4 where the package 34- is illustrated as having a sheet metal upper rim 35 to which may be attached a handle and flange 36 and an open mesh work body 37. The body 37 preferably is made of perforated metal but may be made of screening, expanded metal, woven wire or any open work material which will hold its shape, is sturdy enoughto be handled and yet is sufiiciently foraminous to allow the free passage of air not only through itself but also through an inner lining bag 38 which hasperforated walls and bottom. The liner 38 may be fabricated from material such as cellophane, aluminum and other metal foils, chlorinated sheet rubber, vinyl, vinylidene chloride, or other resin film or other sheet material such as paper or the like and should be very thoroughly perforated so as'to allow the air to pass freely through it. 7 The advantage'in using a, liner of this nature lies, of course, in the simplicity of subsequent handling of the strands. With the use of a perforated liner 38 in the package or basket 34, after a sufficient length of strand has been accumulated the liner 38 may he removed and replaced with an empty liner and the upper portions of the filled liner may be folded down upon the upper layer of packed strand. The package may then be closed and thereafter handled as a lightweight integral unit. This greatly simplifies the shipping of packages of strand from the factory where they are made and packaged as shown in Fig. l, toany other location where the strands may be processed in twisting machines and thereafter in weaving, knitting or other machines.
Although the method of the invention has been described in connection with production and packaging of glass fiber strands in which each strand may consist of 200 or more individual fibers and in which the rate of production is in the order of 10,000 linear feet per minute, and while the method and apparatus of the invention are particularly effective when used in connection with the production of this material, the advantages deriving from the elimination of rotary packaging elements such as spools or buckets apply with equal force to the production of other filamentary material, whether monofilaments, strands, yarns, twists, rovings or the like. The usefulness of the apparatus illustrated for carrying out the method is not confined to the production of glass fiber strands and with but slight modifications also has utility for packaging any of such similar materials.
1. A method for the packaging of continuous filamentary or strand-like material produced at a high linear speed that comprises the steps of projecting the material linearly across an open space toward a packaging station at such speed that said material arrives at such station with an impetus greater than that achieved under free fall and positioning a foraminous container across the line of movement of said material at such station for receiving and containing the strand.
2. A method for the packaging or continuous filamentary or strand-like material produced at a high linear speed that comprises the steps of projecting thematerial linearly across an open space toward a packaging station at such speed that said material arrives at such station with an impetus greater than that achieved under free fall, reciprocating a foraminous container across the line of movement of said material at such station and forcing a draft of air into and through said container for compacting said material therein and holding the same against lateral shifting.
3. A method for the packaging of continuous filamentary or strand-like material produced at a high linear speed that comprises the steps of projecting the material downwardly across an open space toward a packaging station at such speed that said material arrives at such station with an impetus greater than that achieved under free fall, reciprocating a foraminous container across the line of movement of said material at such station and forcing a draft of air into and through said container for compacting said material therein and holding the same against lateral shifting.
4. A method for the packaging of a continuous filamentary or strand-like material that comprises projecting the strand linearly at a high speed across an open space for a distance suilicient to develop a substantial flutter and swirl in the strand by resistance of air to its passage and at such speed that said material arrives at such station with an impetus greater than that achieved under free fall, reciprocating a foraminous receiving container across the line of movement of the strand at a speed such that successive swirls and loops are spread laterally relative to each other to form layers in said container, and forcing a blast of air into said container with said strand and through the foraminous walls thereof for compacting said strand therein and holding the same against lateral movement.
5. A method for the packaging of a continuous filamentary or strand-like material that comprises projecting he strand downwardly at a high speed across an open space for a distance sufficient to develop a substantial flutter and swirl in the strand by resistance of air to its passage and at such speed that said material arrives at such station with an impetus greater than that achieved under free fall, horizontally reciprocating an open topped foraminous receiving container across the line of movement of the strand at a speed such that successive swirls and loops are spread horizontally relative to each other to form horizontal discrete layers in said container, and forcing a blast of air into and through said container for compacting said strand therein and holding the same against lateral movement.
6. A method in accordance with claim 5 in which the receptacle is substantially rectilinear in plan and is reciprocated along its longer axis.
7. A method in accordance with claim 5 in which the material is produced with a generally sinusoidal shape of high frequency and projected from the producing means at such a high linear speed as to delay the noticeable effect of the sinusoidal shape until the material has slowed down due to air resistance to cause the material to fall into the receptacle in loops and swirls.
8. A method in accordance with claim 5 in which the material is glass fiber strands produced at a linear rate in the order of 10,000 feet per minute.
9. A method in accordance with claim 8 in which the air forced into the receptacle is heated for drying strand coating material.
10. Apparatus for the packaging of continuous filamentary or strand-like material that is produced on machinery which ejects the material at a high speed linearly, said apparatus comprising, in combination, a reciprocating member located at a point remote from the last element of such production machinery and in line with the falling strand, means for reciprocating said member in a direction perpendicular to the direction of movement of the strand, a foraminous receptacle having an open side in line to receive said strand, means for removably mounting said receptacle on said member and means for forcing a blast of air into the open side of said receptacle with said strand and through said receptacle.
11. Apparatus according to claim 10 including a flared, removable lip on the receptacle for directing the strand thereinto.
12. Apparatus for packaging a continuous strand comprising means for projecting said strand linearly toward a packaging station at a sufiicient rate of speed that said strand arrives at such packaging station with an impetus greater than that achieved under free fall, an open topped foraminous container, means for reciprocating said container across the path of said strand at said packaging station and means for forcing a blast of air through said receptacle and the strand accumulating therein for compacting the same.
13. Apparatus according to claim 12 in which the packaging station is located at a distance from the projecting means such that air resistance to the passage of the strand causes such strand to laterally deform during its passage thereto while still travelling with such impetus.
14. Apparatus according to claim 12 in which the container is generally rectilinear in plan and is reciprocated on its longitudinal axis transversely of the path of the strand.
15. Apparatus according to claim 14 in which the means for projecting said strand linearly is a pair of coacting rotary rollers between the peripheries of which said strand is and from which the strand is projected generally in a plane perpendicular to the plane of the axes of said rollers and parallel to the plane of the longitudinal axis of the container.
l6. A method for the packaging of continuous filamentary or strand-like material produced at a high linear s eed that comprises the steps of projecting the material linearly across an open space toward a packaging station at such speed that said material arrives at such station with an impetus greater than that achieved under free fall and positioning a forarninous container across the line of movement of said material at such station for receiving and containing the strand.
17. A method for the packaging of continuous filamentary or strand-like material produced at a high linear speed that comprises the steps of projecting the material linearly across an open space toward a packaging station at such speed that said material arrives at such station with an impetus greater than that achieved under free fall, positioning a forarninous container across the line of movement of said material at such station and forcing a draft of air into and through said container for compacting said material therein and holding the same against lateral shifting.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,083,765 Smith Jan. 6, 1914 1,353,613 Renton Sept. 21, 1920 1,771,869 Baldenhofer July 29, 1930 1,824,772 Dassonville Sept. 29, 1931 2,028,241 Paul Jan. 21, 1936 2,127,646 Luery Aug. 23, 1938 2,132,958 Martin Oct. 11, 1938 2,304,260 Keller Dec. 8, 1942 FOREIGN PATENTS 525,283 Great Britain Aug. 26, 1940 420,085 France Nov. 14, 1910