|Publication number||US2799430 A|
|Publication date||Jul 16, 1957|
|Filing date||Jan 10, 1952|
|Priority date||Jan 10, 1952|
|Publication number||US 2799430 A, US 2799430A, US-A-2799430, US2799430 A, US2799430A|
|Inventors||Kintzel John D|
|Original Assignee||Nordendale Mfg Company Inc|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (29), Referenced by (12), Classifications (12)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
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3 Claims. (Cl. 221151) The present invention relates to improvements in coin controlled vending machines designed for customer operation to dispense small articles of merchandise, such as chewing gun, candy, and the like, from any selected one of a plurality of magazines containing different varieties of articles.
One important object of the invention is to provide a vending machine of the character recited with an improved ejector mechanism that is selectively shiftable into dispensing relation with any one of the plurality of article-containing magazines and which is provided with a dual purpose interlocking device that not only prevents operation of the ejector until it is properly registered with a selected magazine, but also serves, once an ejection cycle is instituted, to positively retain the ejector in registry with the magazine until the ejecting cycle is completed.
Another object of the invention is to provide a unitized multi-magazine cartridge for containing the articles to be vended and particularly characterized by display pockets to which access may be had or which are closed as an incident to gaining access to or closing the magazines.
It is a further object to provide in a vending machine a movable closure member, such as a door, carrying drive means connected to an ejector mechanism by a separable drive coupling, the arrangement including means for assuring that the drive coupling will engage smoothly when the door is closed.
An additional object is to effect greater reliability in the ejection of articles from magazines through means for imparting an abrupt kick to the articles just as they are about to leave the magazines.
Other objects and advantages reside in the novel correlation and arrangement of structural elements forming the exemplary embodiment of the invention described herein and illustrated in the accompanying drawings, .in which:
Figure 1 is a front perspective view of the vending machine forming the exemplary embodiment of the invention.
Fig. 2 is a perspective view similar to Fig. 1 and showing the service door of the machine opened and the merchandise cartridge disposed alongside the machine.
Fig. 2A is a fragmentary end view of the machine with the service door open and showing the shield used to prevent coins from being shaken from the machine.
Fig. 3 is a transverse sectional view of the merchandise.
cartridge taken along line 3'3 of Fig. 2.
Fig. 4 is a fragmentary vertical front view of the lower portion of the cartridge with certain parts broken away for clearness in illustration.
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary transverse sectional view taken along line 5-5 of Fig. 4 and illustrating the relationship of the cartridge to a coacting element of the ejector mechanism.
Fig. 6 is a vertical sectional view taken along line 6-6 of Fig. l and showing the ejector mechanism returned to initial position after completing an ejectingcycle.
Fig. 7 is a fragmentary perspective view of the forward portion of the ejector mechanism.
Fig. 8 is a vertical sectional view taken generally along line 88 of Fig. 6 with certain parts broken away for clearness in illustration.
Fig. 9 is a skeletonized perspective view of the dispensing mechanism showing the positional relationship of the parts at an intermediate point in an ejecting cycle.
Fig. 10 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view taken along line 1010 of Fig. 8.
Fig. 11 is a fragmentary sectional view taken along line 11-11 of Fig. 8.
Fig. 12 is a fragmentary vertical section view taken along line 1212 of Fig. 8 and illustrating the positional relationship of the coin rejector and the coin controlled detent with the latter disposed in coin receiving position.
Fig. 13 is a vertical sectional view taken along the lower end of line 1212 of Fig. 8 with parts broken away to show the relationship of the elements of the coin controlled detent in precluding continued actuation of the ejector upon termination of an ejecting cycle.
Fig. 14 is a view similar to Fig. 13 and showing the action of a coin in releasing the detent mechanism to permit operation of the ejector mechanism.
Fig. 15 is a horizontal sectional view taken along line 15-45 of Fig. 12.
Fig. 16 is a horizontal sectional view taken along line 16i6 of Fig. 12 and showing in phantom the manner in which the coin rejector can be disassembled from the service door.
While the invention is susceptible of various modifications and alternative constructions, there is shown in the drawings and will herein be described in detail the preferred embodiment, but it is to be understood that it is not thereby intended to limit the invention to the form disclosed, but it is intended to cover all modifications and alternative constructions falling within the spirit and scope of the invention as expressed in the appended claims.
Adverting more particularly to the drawings, the coin controlled vending machine 20, Figs. 1 and 2, constituting the exemplary embodiment of the invention, comprises a casing 21, of generally rectilinear outline, housing the working parts of the machine and adapted to support in assembled relation therewith a detachable cartridge 22 containing a battery of upright magazines 24 designed to contain stacks of small articles of merchandise of various kinds, such as chewing gum, candy, and the like. Speaking generally, the machine 20, which is intended for customer operation, is designed to enable the customerto choose the type or variety of merchandise he wishes to receive from the cartridge 22 by shifting a selector handle 25 into registry with the magazine 24 containing the desired article. This selection having been made, the machine is operative to dispense the article to the customer through a discharge Window 26 at the front of the machine upon rotation of an operating handle 27 on the side of the machine after insertion of a coin into a coin receiving slot 29, at the top of the casing.
After the magazines 24 of the cartridge 22 have been emptied of merchandise, the cartridge, which is a selfcontained unit, is removed from the machine and replaced by a loaded cartridge that is prefilled outside of the machine. In accordance with one of the concepts involved in the present invention, provision is made, by virtue of a novel arrangement and correlation with each other of the component elements and mechanisms of the machine, for securely locking the cartridge 22 in its assembled relation to the casing 21 as an incident to the closing of a single service door on the casing; the service door, when open, serving to free the cartridge for removal from the casing and at the same time .afiording convenient access to the coin box and working parts of the coin controlled mechanism of the machine. Appreciation of the achievements eflected in this manner is facilitated by a more particularized review of the implementation of the invention shown in the drawings.
Referring to Figs. 1 and 2, taken together with Figs. 6 and 8, it will be perceived that, in the present instance, the generally rectilinear casing 21 comprises a rectangular' bottom panel and two vertical sheet metal bulkheads 31, 32 of rectangular configuration attached at their lower edges to the bottom panel somewhat inwardly of thezrespectivebottom panel ends and extending upwardly, from the bottom panel in parallel spaced relation to each other. As best shown in Figs. 6 and 8, an ejector 34, employed to selectively dispense articles from the cartridge 22, is supported between the bulkheads 31, 32 in the front central portion of the casing 21.
The rear side of the casing 21 is enclosed by a vertical sheet metal plate 35, opposite side edges of which are attached to the rear vertical edges of the respective bull' heads 31, 32. The upper end of the rear plate 35 is wrapped around the arcuate rear upper corners of the bulkheads 31, 32 and attached to outwardly flanged upper marginal edges of the bulkheads 31, 32 to extend nearly half way across the top of the casing. Starting from a position spaced from the forward longitudinal edge of the plate 35 a distance equal to or slightly greater than the thickness of the cartridge 22, a second plate 36 is attached along its opposite side edges to the flanged upper edges of the bulkheads 31, 32 to extend the remaining distance across the top of the casing 21 and down the front side of the casing to the discharge window 26, as shown.
The opposed longitudinal edges of the two plates 35, 36 at the topside of the casing 21 define the opposite longitudinal sides of a slot 37 designed to receive the cartridge 22, which is detachably assembled into the casing with its lower end depending below the top of the easing into cooperative relation with the dispensing mechanism, including the ejector 34, contained within the casing.
In carrying out the invention, the left longitudinal end of the slot 37 (as viewed in Figs. 1 and 2) is closed by the left bulkhead 32 and the right longitudinal end of the slot (adjacent a coin collector or box 39 and other coin receiving elements of the dispensing mechanism at the right end of the casing) is opened horizontally outward by forming in the top edge of the right bulkhead 31 a recess 40 having a width substantially equal to that of the slot and a depth commensurate with the extent to which the cartridge 22 depends below the top of the casing.
As assembled into the casing 21, the cartridge 22 is positively secured against either upward or downward movement relative to the casing by coacting supporting means on the cartridge and easing, which means, as provided by the invention, are correlated with each other in a manner whereby the cartridge, upon being assembled into or disassembled from the casing, is constrained to move horizontally for a short distance at least through the right or open longitudinal end of the casing slot 37. In the present embodiment of the invention, the cartridge 22 is fitted with horizontal support rails 41 attached to opposite longitudinal side panels thereof. As shown, each rail 41 is fabricated from a length of angle iron, one flange of which is riveted to the contiguous cartridge panel to fix the other flange of the iron in a laterally outwardly projecting position. With the cartridge 22 held in its upright position, the cartridge rails 41 are slid longitudinally into complementary casing Support grooves 42, along opposite sides of the casing slot 37, as an incident to horizontal movement of the cartridge through the casing slot 37 into its assembled position in the casing. Preferably, the casing support grooves 42, which receive the respective cartridge rails 41, are formed by the marginal edges of the casing plates 35, 36 on opposite sides of the casing slot 37 and offset marginal edges of elongated metal strips 44, 45 riveted or Welded respectively to the underside of the respective casing panels 35, 36 in parallel contiguous relation to the slot 37. It will be noted that the outer ends of the strips 44, 45 are extended beyond the adjacent bulkhead 31 to form downwardly curved guides 46 which facilitate insertion of the cartridge rails 41 into the respective support grooves 42.
After insertion of the cartridge 22 fully into the casing slot 37, removal of the cartridge from the casing 21 is prevented by the closing of a service door 47 hinged to the rear vertical edge of the adjacent bulkhead 31 to swing across the contiguous end of the casing and block the open right end of the slot 37 across the cartridge. This door 47, when open, releases the cartridge 22 for free removal from the casing 21 and afi'ords access to coin controlled mechanisms within the casing. The top and side marginal edges of the door 47 are provided with inwardly projecting marginal flange 48 which interfits into overlapping relation with complementary outwardly extending marginal flange 49 on the bulkhead 31 when the door is swung into closed position. As a matter of fact, it is the top portion of the marginal flange 48 0f the door 47 which, upon closing of the door, extends across the right end of the casing slot 37 to abut against the cartridge 22 and normally block its removal from the slot.
It is noteworthy at this point (see Fig. 8) that the service door 47 is so arranged that its central panel 50, upon closing of the door, is vertically alined with the adjacent end of the bottom casing panel 30 to define, with the latter panel and the neighboring bulkhead 31, a vertical compartment 51 for coin controlled mechanisms which will be subsequently described in detail. To give the casing 22 a balanced appearance from its external aspect, the end of easing opposite from the door 47 and extending beyond the bulkhead 32 is closed by an end shell 52 shaped as a mirror image of the door and fixedly attached to marginal edges of the adjacent bulkhead 32.
Adverting to the more detailed construction of the detachable cartridge 22, which embodies concepts of the invention, it will be perceived that the cartridge readily lends itself to either of two convenient methods of servicing the machine 20. By virtue of the self-contained character of the cartridge 22, together with its previously described adaptability to be bodily assembled with and removed from the casing 21, the custodian of the machine can be supplied with a number of cartridges, prefilled with merchandise, whereby his duties in servicing the machine consist essentially of replacing an empty or partially empty cartridge with a loaded one after opening the service door 47 and of collecting the receipts from the coin box 39. The advantages of this mode of servicing the machine are particularly manifest in instances in which the custodian of the machine would be disinclined, by reason of other pressing duties or a general distaste for manipulating mechanical contrivances, to personally refill each of the cartridge magazines 24 individually. On the other hand, provision is also made in the design of the cartridge 22 for expeditious on-thespot refilling of the cartridge by the custodian, should he care to do so.
The structural features of the cartridge 22 which provide for refilling of the magazines 24 are integrated into the cartridge in conjunction with other features which provide for a conspicuous and inviting display of the articles available to the customer. As shown best in Figs. 1 to 6, the front and side panels 54, 55 of the cartridge 22 are formed of a transparent construction fully exposing the magazines 24 to the view of the customer. These transparent panels, which are preferably fabricated from a single sheet of Lucite or other suitable plastic bent at right angles along the intersections of the front panel 54 with the side panels 55, are combinedinto a unitary side cover 56 which is detachably positioned -;-in place on the cartridge. Upon removal of this cover, the magazines 24 are exposed along virtually their entire length to permit ready sidewise insertion of a new supply of merchandise.
Aside from the cartridge cover 56, the remaining elements of the cartridge 22 are combined into a unitary frame-like assembly 58 which is preferably fabricated from sheet metal parts spot welded together. Having reference to Figs. 1 to 6, the rear panel 57 and the top panel 59 of the cartridge 22 are formed by a single sheet of metal bent at a right angle along the top edge of the rear panel. These top and rear panels form supports for vertical partitions 60 having side and top flanges 61 spot welded to the contiguous cartridge panels and spaced horizontally from each other to define-sidewalls of vertical chambers 62 for the magazines 24. The lower ends of the partitions 60 are attached in supporting relation to horizontal feet members 64 which form narrow shelflike support elements 65 on the side of each partition facing one of the magazine chambers 62. The pair of opposed shelf elements 65 at the lower end of each magazine chamber 62 are vertically alined with each other to support in the magazine a stack of articles 66, such as packaged chewing gum or Life Savers. As best shown in Figs. 5 and 6, the shelf elements 65 are disposed below the lower edge of the rear cartridge panel 57 a distance greater than the height of one of the packages 66 to be dispensed, but less than the combined height of two packages, whereby only the lowermast package in any magazine 24 can be ejected rearwardly from the stack by a single pass of an ejecting member 67 moving horizontally between the longitudinal ends of the associated shelf elements 65 of the magazine, which elements are purposely spaced apart to permit passage of the ejecting member. Preferably, the lower marginal edge of the rear casing panel 57 is provided with downwardly facing recesses 69 alined with the medial section of each magazine 24 (see Figs. 4 and 8). It will be perceived that these recesses 69 provide additional clearance at the lower end of each magazine 24 which facilitates dispensing of cylindrical packages, such as Life Savers, without diminishing the utility of the magazine in dispensing, one at a time, thinner but rectilinear packages of chewing gum.
At this point it will be observed that when the side cover 56 is removed from the cartridge frame 58, each magazine 24 is open along its entire length, which feature permits expeditious filling of the cartridge.
Interconnection of the cartridge frame 58 with the transparent side cover 56 is provided for by the formation of downwardly depending flanges 70 on the forward and side edges of the top cartridge panel 59 and forwardly extending flanges 71 on the opposite side edges of the rear panel 57, the latter flanges being disposed outwardly of the adjacent magazine partitions 60 a distance equal to the thickness of the cover side panels 55. With this arrangement, the cover 56 is assembled onto the frame by inserting the upper marginal edges of the cover under the top panel flanges 70 and swinging the cover toward the rear panel 57 to engage the rear marginal edges of the cover side panels into the grooves between the side flanges 71 and the contiguous magazine partitions 60. The cover 56 thus assembled on the frame 58 is held against downward movement relative to the frame by inturned steps 72 on the lower ends of each side flange 71, Fig. 4, which extend under the adjacent corners of the respective side panels 55.
To prevent the articles 66 from moving along the magazine shelf elements 65 out the front of the cartridge 22 the front panel 54 of the cartridge side cover 56 is extended to a level at which the distance between the lower edge of the panel is less than the height of the smallest package to'be dispensed, the lower panel edge at the same time being disposed above the shelf elements sufficiently to expose the forward end of the lowermast package of each magazine 24 to the action of the ejecting members 67 of the ejector 34 contained within the casing 21, Fig. 5. The lower edges of the cover side panels 55 are inclined upwardly from the loweredge of the cover front panel 54 to the previously mentioned flange support steps 72. When the cartridge 22 is to be stored or carried separately from the casing 21, it is desirable to place a rubber band or the like around the lower end of the cartridge to retain the lower part of the cover 56 seated against the frame 58.
It will be appreciated that when the cartridge cover 56 is assembled in the cartridge frame 58 the articles in the filled magazines 24 are attractively displayed through the front and side panels of the cover. It is also noteworthy that the longitudinal medial sections of the magazine partitions 60 are cut away, as best shown in Fig. 6, to afford substantially unobscnred side views of the articles stacked in the magazines 24.
Moreover, specimens of articles in the respective magazines are displayed in a special transparent pocket 74 provided on the upper end of the front cartridge cover panel 54 (see Figs. 1, 2 and 6). This pocket, which is also fabricated from sheets of Lucite or the like, is formed by a horizontal bottom panel 75 attached to the cover panel 56 and by a vertical panel 76 spanning the pocket 74 horizontally and extending across its opposite ends to-junctures with the cover panel. The upper end of the pocket 24 is closed by the top cartridge panel 59 which extends over the pocket. The pocket 24 is, moreover, dimensioned to contain the specimens of merchandise positioned vertically therein in front of the respective magazines. It is preferred that the samples be steadied in the pocket 74- by the insertion of separate partitions 77, made from transparent plastic strips, between the adjacent samples.
With the filled cartridge 22 fully installed in the casing 21, articles of merchandise may be selectively dispensed from any one of the magazines 24 by a novel coin controlled dispensing mechanism disposed in the casing 21 and embodying features of the invention. As best shown in Figs. 6 through 10, the ejector 34, constituting the portion of the dispensing mechanism which coacts directly with the cartridge 22 to dispense articles therefrom, is slidably mounted in the front central portion of the casing 21 between the bulkheads 31, 32 for longitudinal movement by the customer into registry with any one of the magazines 24 to eject the type and variety of articles to be purchased. In addition to being structurally simple in design and exceedingly eflicient in operation, the ejector 34 provided by the invention for this purpose is mechanically integrated with an interlocking arrangement 78 coacting with the casing 21 to serve the dual purposes of positively precluding operation of the ejector until it is properly alined with a single one of the magazines 24 and also positively precluding longitudinal shifting movement of the ejector out of registration with the selected magazine while an ejecting cycle is in progress.
Again referring to Figs. 6 through 10, the working mechanism of the ejector 34- is mounted on a boot-shaped carriage 79, the upright leg portion 80 of which is disposed in the upper portion of the casing 21 in front of the' cartridge 22 and the lower foot portion 51 of which extends across the lower end of the cartridge. In the preferred construction shown, the carriage 79 is fabricated from a pair of sheet metal plates 82 suitably secured in spaced parallel relation to each other as by spacer bushings 84, Fig. 6, disposed between the leg and foot portions of the plates and pins 85, 86 extending through the bushings between the plates to hold the latter in positive engagement with opposite ends of the bushings.
The Working parts of the ejector mechanism comprise a single belt of steel band 87 trained over a guide wheel carriage 79 and a relatively large drive wheel 90 journaled; between the plates at the heel of the carriage.
' Positioning of the-bearing supports for the two wheels 89 and 90 on the carriage is such that the top run 91 of the band 87 between the wheels is disposed just beneath the magazine shelf elements 65 in parallel relation thereto to extend from the front edge of the cartridge 22 to a point of tangency with the guide wheel 89 just short of therear edge of the cartridge. The band 87, thus supported for clockwise movement, Figs. 6 and 7, along a closed course extending under the cartridge 22 serves as a carrier for a plurality of ejecting members 67, in this instance three, attached to the band to project outwardly therefrom in lug-like fashion at positions spaced along the band at intervals somewhat greater than the transverse thickness of the cartridge 22 as viewed in Fig. 6. Preferably, the members or lugs 67 are fashioned from triangular metal strips each of which presents an abutment section 92 perpendicular to the band 37 and an inclined brace 94 extending rearwardly to the band from the outer edge of the abutment. The two ends of each lug strip are anchored to the band 87 by integral tabs on the strips which extend through holes in the band to grip the opposite side of the band.
Z;Asl."each' lug 67 moves along the upper run of the band 87 it engages the forward end of the lowermost arti cle of the magazine 24 in registry with the ejector (see Fig. and upon continued movement of the band, the lug passes between the shelf elements 65 of the magazine, Figs. 4 and 9, to force the article out the rear end of the magazine, Fig. 6.
The drive Wheel 90 is fitted with radial sprockets 95 which engage spaced apertures 96 in the band 87 to maintain the movements of the ejector lugs 67 in fixed synchronization with the rotation of the drive wheel. Moreover, the drive wheel 90 is dimensioned to have a circumference equal to twice the spacing along the hand between the lugs 67 whereby the wheel, starting from the position shown in Fig. 6, is effective to move one lug through an ejecting sweep extending across the upper run 91 of the band upon successive rotations of the wheel through angular increments of 180 degrees.
Rotation of the ejector drive wheel 90 to actuate the ejector 34 is effected by a squared, longitudinal drive shaft 97 journaled at opposite ends in the casing bulkheads 31, 32 and extending through a hollow, squared axial sleeve 99 in the wheel which also serves to journal the wheel in the carriage plates 82. Thus, the drive shaft 97 doubles as a support for the lower end of the carriage 79, the upper end of which slidably engages a guide bar 100 extending between the bulkheads 31, 32 in par allel relation to the drive shaft.
Longitudinal movement of the carriage 79 along the shaft 97 and guide bar 100 into registry with various ones of the magazines 24 is effected by the handle 25 pivoted at its lower end between the upright portions of the carriage plates 82 and extending upwardly through a narrow longitudinal slot 101 in the casing top panel 36. Tampering with the mechanism of the machine through the slot 101 is prevented by shielding the slot on its underside by the downwardly offset marginal edge 102 of the cartridge support strip 45 opposite from the cartridge slot 37. To clear this shield the shank of the handle 25 is reversely bent to extend around the free edge of the shield, Figs. 6 and 10.
Once the ejector carriage 79 is shifted into registry with one of the magazines 24 by the handle 25, it is retained in this position until intentionally moved therefrom by the handle which is biased by a spring 104 on the carriage (see Fig. 6) into engagement with one of a plurality of notches 105 arrayed along one edge of the slot 101 in alinement with the respective magazines.
The previously mentioned interlocking mechanism 78 provided by the invention to preclude operation of the ejector 34 unless it is properly alined with one of the magazines 24, comprises a longitudinal stop member 106, in this instance an inwardly facing channel, secured to the inner face of the casing front panel 36 to overlie the free outer end of a generally horizontal elongated dog 107 pivoted at its inner end to the carriage 79 by one extended end of the carriage pin 86 and held against the carriage at its outer end by an upright carriage bracket 108. The central portion of the dog 107 overlies a doublelobed cam 109 fixed to the drive shaft 97 at the adjacent side of the carriage 79 whereby rotation of the shaft to actuate the ejector 34 necessarily pivots the dog upwardly against the action of a spring 110 interconnected between the dog and the carriage as shown in Fig. 9. This upward movement of the dog 107 is blocked by the stop member 106 to preclude rotation of the drive shaft 97 unless the carriage 79 is properly alined with one of the magazines 24, in which case the dog passes up through the adjacent one of a plurality of spaced slots 111 provided in the stop member at stations determined by the longitudinal position of the respective magazines.
Once the drive shaft 97 has been rotated from its starting position, the double-lobed cam 109 maintains the dog 107 in raised position until the drive shaft has turned through a full 180 degrees to complete an ejecting cycle. Thus, by providing 21 depending extension 112 on the free end of the dog 107 (see Fig. 9), the dog is positively interlocked with the stop member 106 to prevent longitudinal movement of the carriage until an ejecting cycle is fully completed.
it is fitting at this point to advert to the improved snubbing means 114 provided in the casing 21 for cooperation with related parts of the machine to perform the dual functions, first, of assuring retention in the cartridge 22 of the lowermost article in each magazine 24 until it is positively forced from the magazine by the ejector 34, and, second, of finally kicking each ejected article clear of the ejecting mechanism into a dispensing chute 115 leading to the discharge window 26 at the front of the casing, asbest shown in Figs. 2, 6, and 9. The snubbing means 114 comprises a plurality of depending coil springs 116 attached at their upper ends to a longitudinal anchor bar 117 spanning the casing between the bulkheads 31, 32. The coiled bodies of the springs 116 are spaced horizontally from each other to cover the vertical interstices between the lowermost articles 66 in adjacent ones of the magazines 24. Moreover, the springs are formed with a diameter exceeding the width of these interstices whereby the springs partially overlap the outer ends of the adjacent articles 66 thus blocking removal of the articles from the respective magazines 24 until each article is individually moved rearwardly by the ejector 34 with sufficient force to push aside the springs, as shown in Fig. 9. Upon rearward movement of an article 66 by the ejector 34 the springs 116 on opposite sides of the article are spread apart until the rear end of the article passes the vertical medial plane of the springs. At this moment the springs snap together, the cylindrical sides of the springs imparting a final kick to 'the article, hurling it rearwardly of the cartridge 22 into the dispensing chute115 (see Fig. 6).
This action of the snubbing means 114 in imparting a final kickto the dispensed article is cumulative with a similar effect achieved by special features of the ejector 34 and coacting parts of the previously described inter lock mechanism 78 between the ejector and the casing 21. As .shown in Fig. 10, opposite sides of the double-lobed cam 109 of this interlock mechanism are formed with elongated parallel flats 119, one of which, in each starting or home. position of the cam, has face-to-face engagement with the lower straight side of the dog 107 which is biased hard against the cam by the spring 110. Thus, the biased dog 107 tends to retain the cam 109 in one of its home positions, located degrees apart. Moreover, once the cam has, in the course of an ejecting cycle, been rotated through an angle somewhat less than 180 degrees (approximately to the position shown in Fig.9), thexdog 107 acts on the cam to snap it on through to its next home position, Fig. 10. This snap action of the cam 109 which is interconnected with the ejector 34 through thedrive shaft 97, imparts a final impulse to the ejecting lug 67 in contact with the article being ejected to give a final kick to the article, which is in addition to thatimparted by the snubbing springs.
The final impetus thus. given the ejected article by the ejector 34 is increased even further by virtue of the location of the axis ofthe ejector guide wheel 89 forward of the central, vertical plane of the snubber springs 116. Consequently, when an ejector lug 67 is actively ejecting an article 66 reaches the immediate vicinity of the snubber springs, the segment of the band 87 to which the lug is directly attached moves into engagement with the periph cry of the guide Wheel 89 which immediately imparts a rotative motion to this band segment, causing the top end of abutment section 92 of the lug to be thrustforwardly at a greater speed than the band is traveling (see Fig. 6). This, of course, increases the kick given the ejected article to the extent that it is virtually shot clear of the ejector 34 into the dispensing chute 115.
As to the construction of this dispensing chute 115, it will be. seen by reference to Figs. 1 and 6 that the upper wall 120 of the chute is formed by turning the lower end of the front casing panel 36 inwardly to extend under the ejector mechanism up to suitable support brackets 121 attachedto the bulkheads 31, 32 just rearwardly of the snubbing means 114. The lower wall 122 of the chute 115 constitutes an inclined apron extending downwardly and forwardly from the medial portion of rear casing panel to the forward-edge of the bottom casing panel 3%).
A stop for the articles sliding down the chute is provided a by a longitudinal ridge 124 formed on the forward edge of the apron 122.
To dispense an article of merchandise down the chute 115 from any one of the magazines 24, the ejector 34 is alined with the selected magazine and the drive shaft 97 is rotated through 180 degrees in the forward direction (clockwise, as viewed in Figs. 2, 6, 9, and 11). To assure proper operation of the ejector mechanism, reverse angular movement of the drive shaft 97 is precluded by a ratchet wheel125 secured to the outer end of the drive shaft and engaged onone side by a spring biased pawl 126 pivoted to the bulkhead 31. Moreover, the ratchet wheel 125 is held in abutting end engagement with the bulkhead 31 by a bulkhead bracket 127 engaging the outer face of the wheel whereby the wheel also serves to fix the drive shaft 97 against longitudinal movement through its bearing supports in the two bulkheads 31, 32.
Positive rotation of drive shaft 97 in the forward direction is permitted by a coin controlled actuating mechanism 129 carried by the service door 47 and interconnected with the shaft, upon closing of the door, by a tang and slot coupling 130 (see Figs. '8, 9, and .15). In this instance, the tang'131 of the coupling 129 is formed on the ratchet wheel 125 attached to the outer end of the drive shaft. The coupling slot which receives the tang 131 is defined by a transverse channel member 132 attached to a rotatable coin receiver 134 which is, inturn, fixed to the inner endof a-han'dle shaft135 journaled in the side panel of the'door 47. With this arrangement, the customer can, byt'urning the operating handle 27 on the outer end of the shaft 135, rotate the drive shaft 97 through the coin receiver 1347and coupling 130 to operate the ejector 34.
As-the interfitting parts of the tang and slot coupling 130 are-disengaged andtengaged with each other upon opening and closingof the service door, provision is made for maintaining these parts in mutual angular alinement while the door is open to assure their smooth re-engagement upon closing of the door. The tang 131 on the end of the drive shaft 97 is, of course, securely held in a fixed positiomwhile the door is open, by the action of the interingrecess 142 (see Fig. 13).
10 locking lever 107 on the cam 109 attached to the drive shaft. It .will'be apprehended that the function of the interlocking mechanism 78 in this respect constitutes still another advantageous feature attributable to this mechanism.
To hold the channel member 132 in mating position relative to the 'tang 131 while the door 47 is open, a stabilizing arm 136 is pivoted to an inwardly projecting pin 137 ontthe door and biased into engagement with the channel by a coil spring 139 disposed around the pin with one end in engagement with the arm and the other end anchored toa bracket 140 fixed to the door alongside the pin. Location of the arm pivot pin 137 relative to the handle shaft 135 is such that when the channel member 132 is in an angular position corresponding to a home position of the drive shaft 97, the arm 136 engages one elongated side of the channel in the same manner as the interlocking dog 107 engages one of the flats 119 on the double-lobed cam 109.
The operating handle 27 and drive shaft 97 are normally locked against forward rotation by an improved coin controlled detent mechanism 141 carried by the service door 47 and designed to be released for angular rotation through an angular increment of 180 degrees upon the depositingof a coin in the previously mentioned coin receiver 134 forming one of the basic elements of this mechanism. By virtue of novel design features incorporated into this coin controlled detent mechanism 141, in accordance with concepts of the invention, an exceedingly compact construction of the mechanism is achieved which occupies a minimum amount of space in the door compartmentv 5.1 and which is positive and certain in its action, as well as .being adapted for most economical manufacture.
As to the details of the coin controlled detent 141, it will be perceived by reference to Figs. 8, 9, 13, 14, and 15 that the coin receiver 134 of the detent mechanism is of an annular shape and forms in its peripheral edge two diametrically opposite recesses 142 opening radially outward. The circumferential location of the recesses on the receiver 134.is such that one of the recesses is disposed on the lower side of the receiver, as shown in Figs. 12 and 13, when the latter is turned to either one of its home positions corresponding to the home positions of the drive shaft 97.
Upon movement of the receiver 134 into one of its home positions, the lower recess 142 is engaged by a transverse pin 144 on .the free end of a locking dog 145 pivoted on the same pin 137 with the stabilizing arm 136 and biased upwardly into engagement with the receiver by a coil spring 146, which is mounted to act on the dog in the same manner as the spring 139 acts on the stabilizing arm (see vFigs. 12, 13, and 15). The dog pin 144 thus engaged in the lower receiver recess 142 serves to preclude any significant forward rotation of the handle 27 and the drive shaft until the pin is positively cammed from the recess bya coin deposited in the receiver 134.
To provide for this camming action by a coin, the circumferential Width of each recess 142 is made somewhat (approximately fifty percent) larger than the corresponding dimension of the pin 144'whereby a small amount of angular play'between the receiver 134 and the engaged pin is provided for. In the course of normal operation of the machine 24) the forward rotation of the drive shaft 97 and the coin receiver 134 at the conclusion of an ejecting cycle is terminated when the pin 144 first drops intothe coacting recess (see Fig. 12) by the cumulative action of the interlocking dog 107 on the shaft cam 109 and the stabilizing'arm 136 on the channel 132. However, should an attempt be made to continue rotation of the mechanism without depositing another coin in the receiver, the permissible continued rotation is limited to only afew ineffectual degrees by the abutment of the pin 144 with the ledge 147 at the forward edge of the coact- However, when turning I 1 moment is released from the handle 27, the dog 107 and arm 136 acting on the cam 109 and channel 132 respectively immediately return the receiver 134 to its normal home position, thus backing the abutting recess ledge 147 a short distance away from the pin 144 (see Fig. 12). As best shown in Fig. 11, one or two teeth are left missing on diametrically opposite sides 149 of the ratchet wheel 125 to permit this return movement of the receiver 134 to home position. v
To release the pin 144 from the coacting recess 142, a coin 148 is seated in the receiver 134 to have one edge disposed in the space between the pin 144 and the receiver ledge 147 (see Fig. 14). Thus, when the receiver 134 is rotated in the forward direction, the contiguous edge of the coin cams the pin 144 up and over the ledge 147 to release the receiver and, consequently, the drive shaft 97 for movement through another dispensing cycle. At the same time the coin 148 drops free of the receiver 134 and into the box 39 (see Fig. 8). The coin thus passes substantially diametrically through the receiver 134, being retained only until it has served to release the pin 144.
To minimize the radial distance through which the pin 144 must be cammed by the coin to release the detent 141, the forward ledge 147 of each receiver recess is shortened radially inward relative to the inner extension of the rear portion of the recess in which the pin is seated just prior to being cammed over the ledge. Moreover, the height of the abutting faces on the ledges 147, thus shortened, is maintained undiminished by increasing the radial depthof the respective recesses at the sides adjacent the ledges, as shown in'Fig's. 13"and 14.
As provided by the invention, coins are seated in camming position in the receiver 134 by dropping the coins into the upper end of a central diagonal slot 150 formed in the receiver to have a generally upright attitude when the receiver is in a locked or home position (see Figs. 13 to A coin 148, when dropped into the slot 150, passes down to a coin pocket 151 at the lower end of the slot formed by the pin 144 disposed in the rear side of the lower recess 142 and a saddle member 152 on the receiver which defines a curved face 154 that engages the coin edge opposite from the pin. This curved face 154 abuttingly supports the coin 148 as it cams the pin 144 out of the recess, as shown in Fig. 14. Since the receiver 134 is of symmetrical construction, a similar saddle member 152 is provided on the opposite side of the receiver for releasing the pin 144 from the other of the recesses 142.
Preferably, the coin receiver 134 is fabricated, as shown, from two congruous plates 155, one of which is centrally attached in perpendicular relation to the inner end of the handle shaft 135. The companion plate is riveted to the first plate and spaced therefrom by two diagonally disposed spacer plates 152 defining opposite edges of the receiver slot 150 and shaped to form the previously mentioned saddle members (also designated by the numeral 152).
As best shown in Figs. 8 and 12, coins are introduced into the coin receiver 134 through the coin slot 29 at the top of the service door 47,'the coins passing through a coin rejector 156 of conventional design attached to the inner face of the door between the coin slot and the receiver. Acceptable coins drop through an outlet slot 157 in the rejector 156 directly into the receiver 134, Fig. 8, and unacceptable coins are shunted by the rejector 156 into a return chute 159 on the side of the bulkhead 31 to be returned to the customer via the dispensing chute 115. 'A plunger 160 is mounted on the top door flange 48 in position to actuate an arm 161 on the coin rejector 1.56 to dislodge slugs from the rejector into the coin return chute 159.
- To provide for quick replacement of the entire rejector unit 15 6, should it for any reason become in nee-d of repair, the unit is detachably mounted between two 112?. upright brackets 162 on the service door panel 50, as shown in Figs. 12 and 16.
Adverting briefly to the arrangement of the mechanical elements in the machine 20 relative to each other, it will be appreciated that by mounting the coin control-led detent mechanism 141 and the coin rejector 156 on the service door 47 these parts are, upon opening of the door, swung away from the casing proper so as not to interfere With the removal of the cartridge'22 from the casing. Moreover, the mechanisms attached to the door 47 are readily accessible to the service man for maintenance purposes.
To permit insertion of maintenance tools into the easing 21 with thecartridge 22 in place, an aperture 164 is provided in the bulkhead just rearwardly of the bulkhead recess 40 (see Figs. 2 and 2A). As shown in Fig. 2A, this aperture, together with the recess 40 and the inner portion of the coin return chute 159, are covered with a shield 165 detachably secured to the bulkhead 31 after the cartridge 22 is seated in place. This shield efiectively prevents coins from being shaken from the coin box 3&9 out through these openings by persons who may overturn the machine 20 for this purpose.
The service door 47 is, of course, locked in its closed position by a suitable locking arrangement 166 on the door which engages the front marginal edge of the bulk head 31.
I claim as my invention:
1. A coin controlled vending machine comprising, in combination, a casing, means on said casing defining a longitudinal slot on the top side thereof, a cartridge containing a battery of upright magazines and detachably mounted within said slot with the lower ends of said magazines depending into said casing, a drive shaft journaled in said casing to extend across said magazine battery in spaced relation thereto, coin controlled operating means associated with said shaft for causing rotation thereof through successive predetermined angular increments, an ejector slidably mounted on said drive shaft, a selector handle external of said casing and connected with said ejector for moving the ejector along said shaft into registry with any one of said magazines, and an interlocking mechanism integrated with said ejector and said casing for precluding operation of said ejector until the latter is properly alined with a selected one of said magazines and operative to prevent shifting movement of said ejector out of registration with a selected magazine while an ejecting cycle is in progress; said mechanism including a stop member fixed to said casing in spaced, generally parallel relation to said shaft; a cam rotatable with said shaft and movable longitudinally relative thereto with said ejector, a dog carried in axial alinement with said cam to be displaced transversely relative to said shaft from rest position into engagement with said stop member upon rotation of said cam, said stop member serving to block said transverse displacement of said dog until said ejector is properly registered with one of said magazines and being effective to block movement of said dog along said shaft when the former is in displaced position.
2. A coin controlled vending machine comprising, in combination, a casing, a battery of upright magazines having lower ends thereof depending into said casing, a drive shaft journaled in said casing and extending along said battery in spaced relation thereto, coin controlled operating means associated with said shaft forcausing rotation thereof through successive predetermined angular increments, an ejector slidably mounted on said drive shaft, a selector handle external of said casing and connected with said ejector for moving the ejector along said shaft into registry with any one of said magazines, and "an interlocking mechanism integrated with said ejector and said casing for precluding operation of said ejector until the latter is properly alined with a selected one of said magazines and operative to prevent shifting movement of said ejector out of registration with a selected magazine while an ejecting cycle is in progress; said mechanism including an elongated stop member fixed to said casing in spaced, generally parallel relation to said shaft; a lobed cam mounted on said shaft for rotation therewith and longitudinal movement thereon with said ejector, a dog pivotally mounted on said ejector in axial alinement with said cam to be displaced transversely relative to said shaft toward said stop member upon rotation of said cam by said drive shaft as an incident to :actuation of said ejector, said stop member having formed therein longitudinally spaced transverse passages registering with said respective magazines and providing for transverse displacement of said dog only upon alinernent of said ejector with one of said magazines, and said stop member being effective to block movement of said dog along said shaft so long as the latter is displaced into one of said passages by said cam.
3. In a vending machine, a casing, a battery of supply magazines depending into said casing, a rotatable drive shaft extending along said battery in spaced relation thereto; an ejector slidably mounted on said shaft for dispensing articles from selected ones of said magazines and including a carriage, a drive wheel journaled in said carriage and rotatable with said shaft, a guide wheel journaled on said carriage about an axis parallel to said shaft and spaced therefrom, an endless band trained over said two wheels and extending beneath said battery in transverse relation thereto, ejector lugs mounted on said band and spaced therealong, a cam rotatable with said shaft and a cam follower biased hard into engagement with the cam surface thereon and being displaced from rest position upon rotation of said shaft, an elongated stop member mounted in said casing in spaced parallel relation to said shaft and disposed in position to block displacement of said follower, a plurality of passages spaced along said stop member at stations corresponding to the spacing between said magazines, said passages providing for displacement of said follower only upon registration of said ejector with one of said magazines, and
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|U.S. Classification||221/151, 221/97, 221/253, 221/287, 194/255, 221/155, 221/133, 221/123|
|International Classification||G07F11/26, G07F11/16|