US 2817196 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 24, 1957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE 15 sheds-sheet 1 INVENTORS WML/AM A. HJM/@LER ATTORNEY llel Qx Filed Jan. 14. 1954 vll i Lind! Dec. Z4, 1957 W. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE 15 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Jam 14,` 1954 INVENToR. W/L//IM A. EVA/@LER ATTORNEK 24, 1957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGNG MACHINE '15 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed Jan. 14, 1954 JNVENTOR M LL/AM A. RING/.ER
ATTORNEY 15v sneetsfsheet 4 /4 TTOR/VEY De@ 24, 1957 w. R. RINGLl-:R
CAN PACKAGING MACHINE Filed Jan. 14, 1954 24, 1957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE 15 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed Jan. 14, 1954 INVENTolL A TTOfM/EY Dec. 24, *1957 w. R. RINGLER 2,817,195
' CAN PACKAGING MACHINE Filed Jan. 14, 1954 15 Sheets-Sheet 6 J0 77 j A JNVENTOR.
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CAN PACKAGING MACHINE 15 Sheets-Sheet 7 Filed Jan. 14, 1954 ATTORNEY Dec. 24, 1957 w. R. -RINGLER V2,817,195
CAN PACKAGING MACHINE Filed Jan. 14. 1954 i 15 Sheets-Sheet 8 h. NNC. x SGN A T TORNE Y Dec. 24, 1957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE Filed Jan. 14, 1954 15 Sheets-Sheet 9 R 3 G. .C N T N R N l 4 0 V MWA J T lll, l A ill 4 M C u 7 5 5 Y 5 W l 5 Y www l o 5 B 4 b 5 7% W. 3 \M C. d] a 4 HN l 0 7 4 l` l|a r/| 3 fd ,mf/Hg M 7 4 aw. 4 40M. uw www U 7 uw .J my 5 4ll lo -l S :nl |111 3 6 Dec. 24, `1957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE l5 Sheets-Sheet 10 Filed Jan. 14. -1954 A INVENToR. l'I//LL/AM A. R/NGLER BY Y Mf/@JM/ ATTORNEY Dec.y 24, 1957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE 15 Sheets-Sheet 11 Filed Jan. 14, 1954 W. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE Dec. 24, 1957 15 Sheets-#Sheet 12 Filed Jan. 14, 1954 A INVENTOR. W/LL/AM A. RINGLER BY m Mfn/ ATTORNEY Dee. 24, 1957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE 15 Sheets-Sheet 13 Filed Jan. 14, 1954 ATTORA/fy Dec. 24, A1957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE 15 Sheets-Sheet 14 Filed Jan. 14, 1954 R l E Y l 6 m M M mm, M 8 ,8 3 33 T n www /1 3 man m z/ j WA. H Il I 5 M J A III-till. .lllllll )Illlx H. n 4 .Imm Vl W 3 4 /l Y 5 l! www ,9 5 8 4 b l@ Ml M, 3 3 Z l0 O )(4. c. W@ m .b ,l al o lfm. l/ 8 ha a: oo 0 /d Alg., 3 @011,3 c- O. Q40 /4W` .il 1/ Z o l m 9.. 9 M MM@ a a l .A1/J .A w 3x W 4 .L 3
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De@ 24, l957 w. R. RINGLER CAN PACKAGING MACHINE Filed Jan. 14, 1954 15 Sheets-Sheet l5 INVENTOIL M//LL/AM A R/NGLER BY v m y MM ATTORNEY CAN PACKAGING MACHINE William A. Ringler, Wayne, Pa., assgnor to The Gardner BFard & Carton Co., Middletown, Ohio, a corporation o Ohio Application January 14, 1954, Serial No. 404,018
49 Claims. (Cl. 5'3-40) This invention relates to can packaging apparatus designed to apply dat wrapper blanks in embracing relation to successive can groups and to secure portions of the enwrapped blank together to provide completed can packages for distribution and sale.
Various canned products such as beverages, foods and the like can be advantageously merchandized in groups of three or more cans when enclosed within a suitable carton or Wrapper carrier. Since the cost of the cartons or wrappers, as well as the cost of packaging the cans therein, must be added to the price at which the completed can packages are sold, thought and attention is constantly being directed to ways and means for reducing the overall packaging costs, including the cost of producing the can enclosing cartons or wrappers as well as the cost of performing the packaging operation.
This invention is directed to the provision of an improved packaging machine designed to operate on simplilied Wrapper blanks which can be produced at low cost and substantially without waste of sheet material. This improved can packaging apparatus is substantially automatic in operation and may be operated at high production speeds. The apparatus is equipped with blank feeding mechanism for depositing successive blanks onto a continuously traveling conveyor which is composed of a series of hingedly connected blank supporting platforms having means associated therewith for unfolding the blank side panels and infolding and securing the top panel sections together and in encasing relation to can groups during continuous travel thereof on the conveyor. This apparatus is further equipped with can feeding and loading mechanism designed to deliver and deposit a predetermined number of cans in position on the traveling wrapper blank as supported on the conveyor platforms. The apparatus also includes means for manipulating parts of the can Wrapping devices to thereby enwrap the can groups in the wrapper blanks during continuous and uninterrupted travel thereof. This improved apparatus is also provided with means and devices for iirmly securing the enwrapped blanks in tubular form to thereby tightly encase and lock the can groups therein.
The can packaging apparatus of this invention is designed to apply various different shapes and forms of wrapper blanks to can groups during the continuous travel thereof. Where the wrapper blank is provided with paired handle sections by means of which the can package is carried, it is preferable to secure the paired handle sections together as by staples. Where the wrapper blank is shaped to provide overlapped top panel sections, having spaced finger insertion holes therein by means of which the completed can package may be carried, the overlapped top panel sections may be advantageously glued together. The can packaging apparatus of this invention may be provided with suitable stapling devices for applying two or more staples to the paired handle sections of the can enclosing wrapper blank, or alternatively, the apparatus may be'provided with adhesive applying means to secure the atent O 2,817,196A Patented Dec. 24, 197
overlapped top panel sections of the wrapper blank firmly together.
An object of this invention is to provide an improved can packaging apparatus operative to automatically en wrap and secure various forms of wrapper blanks to can groups in continuous production and at high production speeds.
Another object of this invention is to provide an automatically operative can packaging apparatus having mechanism for depositing wrapper forming blanks in uniform spaced relation on a continuously traveled conveyor, mechanism for grouping and depositing can groups on the continuously traveling blanks, mechanism for tightly enwrapping the blanks around the can groups during continuous travel thereof, mechanism for firmly securing the blanks in tightly Wrapped relation around the can groups to provide completed can packages, and mechanism for successively discharging the completed can packages from the apparatus at high production speeds.
A further object of this invention is to provide an improved can grouping and loading mechanism adapted to operate in association with a can filling machine and which is designed to receive the cans from either one or two can conveyor lines, to group the cans in closely nested relationship, and to deposit -the can groups in accurately registered position on the bottom panels of rapidly advancing can wrapping blanks.
A further object of this invention is to provide an improved mechanism for enclosing wrapper blanks tightly and snugly around can groups during continuous and uninterrupted -travel thereof at high speed.
Other objects and advantages of this invention Will become apparent as the disclosure proceeds.
Although the characteristic features of this invention will be particularly pointed out in the claims, the inven-l tion itself, and the manner in which it may be carried out,` may be better understood by referring to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, in which Fig. 1 is a vdiagrammatic plan view of the can packaging apparatus of this invention which generally illustrates the path of travel of the cans and the wrapper blanks into packaging position, and also the travel of the partly formed and completed can packages through the apparatus.
Fig. 2 is a diagrammatic side elevation of the transporting conveyor, with the associated blank feeding mechanism and can feeding mechanism shown inA their relative positions along the conveyor, this view also showing a side elevation of the can packages in process of forma tion andthe manner in which the completed can packages are discharged from the apparatus.
Fig. 3 is a plan view of one form of can wrapper blank which may be used for application to a group of six cans by the apparatus of this invention.
v Fig. 4 is a perspective view of the completed can pack- .age formed from the blank shown in Fig. 3 and as the same appears when applied to the can group by the apparatus of this invention.
Fig. 5 is a modified form of can blank designed to be tightly wrapped and Isecured around a can group by the can packaging apparatus of this invention.
Fig. 6 is a perspective view of the completed can package formed from the blank shown in Fig. 5 a's wrapped around a can group.
Fig. 7 is a side elevation of the can packaging apparatus showing certain details of Ithe framework structure which may be employed to support the conveyor and the Various operating mechanisms associated with the apparatus.
Fig. 8 is a top plan view of the can packaging apparatus showing the framework structure and certain of the op` erating mechanisms associated therewith in further detail.
Fig-'9 isa transverse section yshowing further details of the framework structure, the can feeding mechanism and parts of the conveyor guides as the same would appear when viewed along line 9 9 of Fig. 7.
-Fig. 10 is a fragmentary cross section taken longitudinally of the apparatus as the `same would appear when viewed along line 10-10 of Fig. 1, this view showing further details of the transporting conveyor, the conveyor supporting sprocket at the head end of the machine, and the manner in which the can wrapper blanks may be deposited on the packaging platforms which form part of 4the conveyor.
Fig. 11 is a transverse cross |section of the apparatus as the same would appear when viewed along line 11-11 of Fig. l0, this view showing further details of the transporting conveyor and associated can wrapping buckets, the conveyor supporting sprocket at the head end of the apparatus, and certain details of the blank feeding mechanism which may be employed.
Fig. 12 is a transverse cross section of the apparatus as the same would appear when viewed along line 12--12 of Fig. l, this View illustrating further details of the can feeding rotors and drives therefor, as well as the relative position of the side wings of the can wrapping platforms when in process of can loading.
Fig. 13 is a top plan view of a portion of the can packaging apparatus which further illustrates the manner in which the can group is loaded on to the bottom panel of the wrapper blank and the guide devices employed for erecting the side wings of the packaging platforms into can wrapping position.
Fig. 14 is a transverse section of the appara-tus as the same would appear when viewed along line 14-14 of Fig. 13, this view showing the side wings of the can wrapping platform in process of erection to enwrap the side panels of the can blank against the sides of the can group.
Fig. 15 is another transverse section of the apparatus when viewed along line 15-15 of Fig. 13 and at a more advanced stage in the wrapping operation, this view showing the side wings of the can wrapping platform fully erected to tightly enwrap the side panels and the top panel sections of the wrapper blank against the `side walls and the top end of the can group.
Fig. 16 is an end elevation of the can wrapping platform showing the side wings thereof erected in full lines, the outline of the side wings also being shown in their extended position for receiving the initially flat can blank.
Fig. 17 is a side elevation of the can Wrapping platform as the l'same would appear when the side wings are in fully erected position, the relative position of the wings of the preceding and following can wrapping platforms being shown in dot and dash lines.
Fig. 18 is a bottom plan view of the can wrapping platform which illustrates further structural details thereof.
Fig. 19 is a fragmentary top plan view of the can feeding rotors and associated can guide tracks which merge the two can rows into adjacent position for packaging into can groups.
Fig. 20 is another top plan view of the merging sections of the can guide tracks which further illustrates the manner in which the two can rows are merged together to provide compact can groups.
Fig. 21 is a fragmentary transverse |section taken along line 21-21 of Fig. 20 which further illustrates the manner in which the can tracks guide the two rows of cans onto the bottom panel of the wrapper blank as supported on the bottom platform of the can wrapping bucket.
VFig. 22 is a further cross section of the can loading sections of the paired can guiding tracks as the same would appear when viewed along line 22-22 of Fig. 20, this view showing a pair of cans in process of ejection from the paired can tracks and in position on the bottom panel of the wrapper blank as supported on the bottom platform of the can wrapping bucket.
Fig. 23 is a further fragmentary top view of the can loading sections of the can guiding tracks, this view showing two pairs of cans as they would appear when ejected from the guiding tracks and positioned on the bottom panel of the wrapper blank as supported on the bottom platform of the can wrapping bucket.
Fig. 24 is a side elevation of a portion of the can packaging machine of this invention which is alternatively equipped with a glue applicator and a pressure applying device for gluing and sealing the top panel sections of the can packages as formed from the wrapper blank shown in Fig. 5.
Fig. 25 is a top plan view of a portion of the alternative form of can packaging machine `of Fig. 24, this view showing further details of the glue applicator which operates to Iapply parallel `strips of adhesive to one of the top panel sections of the blank shown in Fig. 5 and the pressure device which operates to apply bonding pressure to the overlapped top panel sections to thereby produce the completed can package as Ishown in Fig. 6.
Fig. 26 is a transverse section of the modified apparatus shown in Figs. 24 and 25 as viewed along line 26-26 of Fig. 25, this view showing further details of the glue applicator and the manner in which parallel strips of adhesive are applied to one of the top panel sections of the blank as supported in the expanded can wrapping bucket during continuous travel thereof;
Fig. 27 is another transverse section of the modified apparatus as the same would appear when viewed along line 27-27 of Fig. 25, this view showing further details of the device employed to apply bonding pressure to the overlapped top panel sections of the can package as contained within the continuous traveling can wrapping v bucket; and
Fig. 28 is a diagrammatic view of the drive connections which may be employed to drive the various mechanism associated with this can packaging apparatus.
To exemplify the various forms of wrapper blanks on which the apparatus of this invention is adapted to operate, two forms of can wrapper blanks are shown in Figs. 3 and 5 for purposes of illustration. The can wrapper blanks are preferably formed from relatively tough and strong paperboard or fberboard stock sheets which caliper from 2O to 40 thousandths of an inch in thickness, but it will be appreciated that various other brous, plastic, or metallic sheet materials may be employed to provide the wrapper blanks to be pack-aged on the .apparatus of this invention. The wrapper blanks are sized to snugly contain and support the can group when arranged in two closely adjacent rows, each row comprising two, three, four, ve, six or more cans as desired. Although the apparatus may be constructed in accordance with this invention to package can groups comprising a single or a double row of cans of any desired number, for convenience in description the can packaging machine as illustrated in the accompanying drawings has been sized to package can groups of six cans each.
The can wrapper blanks A and A as shown in Figs. 3 and 5, both present a bottom panel a sized to snugly support a group of six cans. A pair of side panels b are foldably connected to the opposite side edges of the bottom panel, the height of the side panels b being closely equal to the height of the cans C to be packaged in the wrapper blank. An infolding top panel section d is connected to each of the side panels b. A series of spaced cuts e, which may be either arcuate or U shaped, are located along the line of juncture between the side panels b and the bottom panel a, and also at the line 4of juncture between the side panels b and the top panel sections d. Thus, when the blanks are shaped into package form as shown in Figs. 4 and 6, relatively narrow can chime receiving slits e are formed along the lower and upper edges of the side panels b to receive the can chimes c' and thereby lock the individual cans of' the can group firmly within the wrapper blank.
Each of the top panel sections d of the blank shown in Fig. 3 has -a width which closely approximates the can diameter, and a handle section f is foldably connected along fold line g to each top panel section d. When the can group is snugly packaged within the wrapper blank as shown n Fig. 4, the paired handle `sections f will overlap, and may thus be secured together as by spaced staples s placed adjacent the bend lines g of the handle sections. The paired handle sections f may also be provided with aligned holes h through which the fingers may be inserted for carrying purposes.
The blank A' shown in Fig. 5 is provided with a pair of infolding top panel sections d which are of sufficient width to provide a substantial overlap when infolded over the upper end of the can group. The overlapped top panel sections d are preferably 'secured together by two parallel strips `of adhesive i which may be applied to one or both top panel sections d immediately prior to the upfolding of the side panels. Each of the top panel sections d of the lblank A are also provided with a pair of nger insertion holes j which fall into aligned registery when the top panel sections d are infolded and adhesively secured together to provide the complete can package as shown in Fig. 6.
As shown in the accompanying drawings, the can packaging apparatus of lthis invention generally comprises a continuous transportation conveyor 10 composed of a series of can wrapping buckets 30 hinged together at the ends thereof and thus provide the -connected links of the conveyor. Each can wrapping bucket 30 includes a pair of foldable side wings 34 which are supported in outswung position by Ian arrangement of guide tracks during the traveling interval when the bucket remains unloaded and when it receives the can 'blank and the can group. The apparatus also includes blank feeding mechanism 70 for depositing the initially flat wrapper blanks, such as the blank A or A', in registered position within the traveling can wrapping buckets 30 and while the side wings thereof are extended. The apparatus additionally includes can driving, can grouping and can depositing mechanism 90 operative to drive and direct two rows of cans into parallel relation, to thereupon closely nest lthe cans into can groups, and to deposit each can group in accurately registered position on the bottom panel of the wrapper blank as supported upon the bottom platform of the expanded can Wrapping bucket during travel thereof.
The apparatus is also equipped with cooperating devices associated with the framework structure and the side wings of the buckets for upswinging the bucket side wings to thereby upfold the side panels b of the wrapper blank into snug hugging relation against the sides of the can group. The side wings of each bucket 3l) are equipped with inturned end flanges 36 which maintain the can group in accurate position, `and with inturned top anges 37 which operate to infold the top panel sections d of the wrapper blank in close overlying relation across the upper end of the associated can group, which operation is automatically effected when the side wings of the bucket have been fully erected.
Where wrapper blanks in the forni shown in Fig. 3 are employed, this can packaging apparatus is equipped with devices 121 for upturning the paired handle sections f of the blank into overlapped relation. Suitable stapling mechanism 128 is also provided which is operative to apply spaced staples s to the upfolded handle sections adjacent the crotch lines g thereof while the overlapped handle sections are firmly held in overlapped relationship.
Where wrapper blanks formed as shown iny Fig. 5 are employed, this apparatus is alternatively equipped with a glue applicator device 130 as lshown more particularly in Figs. 25 and 26 which operates to apply two parallel strips of adhesive i longitudinally across one of the top panel sections d during continuous travel of the blanks as supported in extended position on the expanded can wrapping buckets. ln the alternative form of the apparatus as `shown in Figs. 25 to 28 inclusive, the stapling mechanism may be rendered inoperative 4or eliminated, and a pressure applying device substituted which operates to apply bonding pressure in the overlapped top panel sections d `of the can packages Ias nested in the traveling can wrapping buckets.
Both forms of the apparatus are equipped with guide devices for outswinging the side wings 34 of the can wrapping buckets 36 when formation of the can packages has been completed. The can packages, however, continue to be supported upon the bottom platform 31 of the opened can wrapping buckets until the buckets arrive at the discharge end of the conveyor. The transportation conveyor, as composed of the hingedly connected buckets, travels around a discharge sprocket 12 which is shaped to cause the bottom platform 31 of the opened buckets to assume a forward inclination sufficient to effectv forward sliding discharge of the can package P supported thereon, during initial movement of the bottom platform around the sprocket. A stationary inclined receiver 151 is positioned at the discharge end of the conveyor and is constructed to receive the can package as it slides off the inclined bottom platform of the bucket. The inclined receiver in turn delivers the completed can package onto a suitable belt conveyor 157 for final transportation to any desired location.
The transportation conveyor The transportation conveyor 10, whose linkages are formed `by the hingedly connected can wrapping buckets 30, is supported upon a pair yof similar sprockets 11 and 12 rotatably mounted in the framework structure at the head and discharge ends of the apparatus. The framework structure as shown in Figs. 7, 8 and 9 may comprise a pair of longitudinally extending tubular beams 1 which vare supported at a convenient elevation by a series of paired tubular supporting posts 2 secured at the lower ends thereof to a corresponding pair of longitudinal beams 3 positioned adjacent the floor. The paired supporting posts 2 may be braced by transversely extending struts 4 to provide a rigid framework structure. The structure may be further braced by a series of upper transverse beams 5 secured to the longitudinal beams 1. Support for the conveyor sprockets 11 and 12 is provided by a pair of longitudinally extending channel shaped beams 6 which extend longitudinally of the conveyor and rest upon the cross beams 5.
Each of the conveyor mounting sprockets 11 and 12 comprises a pair of spaced sprocket forming plates 13 as shown in Figs. 2, l0 and ll which are maintained in spaced relation by a series lof spacing collars 14 and are firmly secured together by tie-bolts 15 which extend through the spacing collars 14. The paired sprocket forming plates 13 are of similar shape and are provided.
with six radially extending sprocket legs 16 arranged in pairs, with the paired sprocket legs of the paired sprocket plates having aligned semi-circular grooves 16 in the ends thereof designed to engage the hinging axle 43 which connects the link forming buckets 30 of the conveyor. The peripheral edge sections 17 between the adjacent sprocket legs 16 of each sprocket plate 13 has a concave contour so that the sprocket will not interfere with parts of the conveyor forming buckets 30 as they travel around the rotating sprocket.
The paired sprocket forming plates 13 are mounted on a hub section 18 as shown in Figs. 10 and l1 which is splined to a sprocket shaft 19 and adjustably centered on the shaft as by adjustable hub collars 18. Each sprocket shaft 19 is rotatably journaled in a pair of bearing units 20 each of which is fixed to the adjacent hanger bracket 21. Each hanger bracket 21 has a horizontally extending angle-shaped member 22 secured thereto as by bolts 22 by means-of which it is adjustably suspended from the lower flange 6 of the longitudinally extending channel beam 6. Each angle member 22 abuts the bottom ilange 6 of the adjacent channel beam 6 and is detachably secured thereto as by a wing locking bar 23. Each pair of hanger brackets 21 may be strengthened and stiffened by an angle shaped bracing strut 24 which may be adjustably connected to the adjacent transverse beam by threaded adjusting bolts 25 as shown in Fig 10.
By loosening the bolts 23 which secures the winged locking lock bars 23 to the angle members 22 of the hanger brackets 21, and detaching the adjusting bolts 25, the hanger bracket assembly may be detached from the channel shaped supporting beams 6 and the entire conveyor and sprocket assembly removed from the apparatus for adjustment or repair. Additionally, the hanger brackets 21 can also be adjusted in position along the supporting beams 6 to thereby slacken the conveyor 10 to a suilicient extent to permit ready removal of any one of the link-forming buckets 30 thereof, or the addition of link-forming buckets to the conveyor. The conveyor may also be adjusted into stretched operating condition by manipulating the adjusting bolts v25.
The paired channel shaped beams 6 also provide support for the upper run of the conveyor by the provision of a pair of channel shaped guide tracks 26 which rest upon and are secured to the upper flanges 6" of the sprocket supporting beams 6. The paired guide tracks 26 support the conveyor buckets 30 during their upper run travel between the conveyor supporting sprockets 11 and 12. A similar pair of channel shaped guide tracks 27 provide guiding support for the lower run of the conveyor buckets 30 as shown more particularly in Figs. 7, 9 and l-l. The lower bucket guiding tracks 27 may be secured to the lower anges of a pair of longitudinally extending supporting beams 28 which may be secured in suspended position from the transversely extending frame bracing struts 4 Ipreviously described. The upper and lower guide tracks 26 and 2.7, as well as the supporting beams 6 and 28 to which they are attached, are positioned within the loop of the conveyor 10 and extend between the conveyor sprockets 11 and 12 located at the head end and the discharge ends of the apparatus. It Iwill thus be appreciated that the entire transporting conveyor 10, as formed by the hingedly connected can wrapping buckets 30, is continuously supported in predetermined traveling position throughout its entire path of travel by the =head sprocket 11, the discharge sprocket '12, the upper guide tracks `26 and the lower guide tracks 27.
The can wrapping buckets The can wrapping buckets 30, connected to provide the links of the transportation conveyor 10, each comprise a bottom platform 31 as shown in Figs. 16, 17 and 18 having a `smooth can supporting `surface which is rectangular in `shape and sized to the area of the can -group to be supported thereon. The bottom platform 31 has a :can follower plate 32 extending at a right angle from the rear edge thereof. The can follower plate 32 presents a pair of spaced projecting -tongue portions 32' inset from the side edges 33 thereof as shown in Fig. 16.
A pair of side wings 34 are swingably connected to the opposite side edges of the bottom platform 31 as by strong piano hinges `35 and extend substantially the full length of the bottom platform. Each side wing 34 presents a pair of end flanges 36 at the ends thereof Whose inner edges 36 may be tapered as shown in Fig. 16 and terminate short of the outer ends 33 of the can follower plate 32' so that the side Iwing may be erected into vertical position. Each side wing 34 also has an inturned top lflange 37 which may be formed integrally with the end flanges 36. The end :anges 36 serve to retain the pairedend cans of the can group in alignment when the side wings 34 `are swung into vertical can wrapping position, and the top anges 37 operate to infold the top panel sections d of the wrapper blank as packaged therein. The inside height of each side wing 34 closely approximates the height of the can group as pocketed therebetween, and the side wings 34 are spaced to snugly enwrap the side panels b into hugging relation against the sides of the can group. Spaced pressure segments 34 are secured to the inside face of each side .wing 34 adjacent the top flange 37 thereof, the pressure segments 34 being so spaced as to exert inbowing pressure on the portions of the blank side panels b which extend between the adjacent cans, thereby insuring tight blank wrapping of the can group as shown in Figs. 13 and l5.
Each lside wing 34 has a wing supporting roller 38 associated therewith which is rotatably supported on a stub shaft 38 mounted on a bracket 39 secured to and extending laterally from eac-h side wing as shown in Figs. 16, 17 and 18. The side wing supporting rollers 38 are designed to support the side wings in laterally extending position during travel of the can wrapping buckets along the lower run and part of t-he upper run of the conveyor. Each side wing 34 also has a curvilinear cam plate 40 secured thereto at a point below the side wing supporting roller 38, each cam plate 40 presenting a tapered camming edge 41 which is designed to cam against lxed camming rollers 55 mounted on the framework structure to thereby upswing the side wings 34 as more fully described hereafter.
The bottom platform 31 of each can wrapping bucket 30 has a U-sh'aped bracket 42 attached to the underside and adjacent the rear end thereof. The U-bracket 42 presents projecting bracket legs 42 through which the bucket supporting axle 43 extends as shown in Figs. 16, l7 and 18. Each end of the axle 43 projects through the adjacent 'bracket 1eg 42' and has a ball bearing roller 44 rotatably mounted thereon. The axle 43 is held against weaving movement by a pair of collar portions 43 secured to the axle and positioned adjacent the inside faces of the bracket legs 42. The following end of each can wrapping bucket is thus supported by its axle 43 and associated rollers 44. The lead end of each bucket is adjustably clamped to the supporting axle 43 of the next preceding can wrapping bucket so that both ends of the buckets are supported by the intervening axles 43 and associated rollers 44 in a manner to provide a continuous conveyor.
A stiffening plate 45 is secured to the underside of each bottom platform 31 and extends from the axle supporting U-bracket 42 to the leading edge of the platform. The stiffening plate 45 is provided with a downwardly extending coupling flange 46 as shown in Figs. 17 and 18. A detachable coupling plate 47 is secured to the coupling ange 46 as by connected bolts 47. The adjacent faces of the coupling flange 46 and coupling plate 47 define an axial hole 47 therebetween which is designed to embrace the center section of the preceding bucket axle 43 to thus provide the hinging linkage between adjacent buckets. The bottom platform 31 may be further strengthened and reinforced by stiffening angles 48 positioned on each side of the stiffening plate 45. Each of the stifening angles 48 presents a horizontal leg portion 49 secured to the underside of the bottom platform 31, a vertically extending leg portion 49 which abuts against the side edge of the stifening plate 45, and an end ange portion 49" which seats against the adjacent edge of the U-bracket 42. As thus reinforced, the can wrapping buckets are strong and sturdy in construction and provide the linkages for the transportation conveyor 10 whose linkage lengths are measured by the distance between adjacent bucket-supporting axles 43.
It willbe noted by referring to Figs. 10 and 11 that the adjacent axles 43 associated with the can wrapper buckets are equally spaced and conform to the spacing between thesprocket legs 16 of the conveyor sprockets 11 and 172, and that the paired sprocket plates 13 are so spaced that the axle supporting grooves 16' thereof will engage the spaced sections of each axle which extends between the adjacent collar portion 43 and the adjacent downwardly extending leg portion 49' of the bucket stiffening angle 48.
It will also be noted by referring to Figs. 8, 9, l0, l1 and l2 that the upper run of the can wrapping buckets are supported by the upper channel shaped guide tracks 26 into which the bucket supporting rollers 44 extend. The bucket supporting rollers 44 actually roll on the 'bottom flanges of the guide tracks and are prevented from moving out ot' rolling contact therewith by the overhanging flanges thereof. The ends of the guide tracks 26 as shown in Figs. 8 and l0 terminate directly above the head and discharge sprockets 11 and 12 so that when the axles 43 of the traveling buckets move away from the advance ends of theguide tracks 26, they are picked up and supported in the axle grooves 16 in the adjacent legs 16 of the discharge sprocket 12. Also, when each bucket supporting axle 43 is discharged from supporting position on the sprocket legs 16 of the head sprocket 11, it is so directed that the bucket rollers 44 are projected into theentry end of the guide tracks 26. In the same manner, the lower pair of roller guiding tracks 27 cooperate with the head and discharge sprockets 11 and 12 so that the adjacent paired sprocket legs 16 of the discharge sprocket 12 will discharge the `bucket axle 43 supported thereon into the entry end of the lower guide tracks 27, and the legs 16 of the head sprocket 11 will pick up the axle when leaving the discharge end of the lower guide tracks 27.
The apparatus is also equipped with a pair of upper wing supporting guide tracks 50 and a pair of lower wing supporting guide tracks 53 which cooperate with the side wing rollers 38 to support the wings of each bucket in horizontally extending position as shown in Figs. 8, l1 and 12 for a substantial par-t of their travel. The Z- shaped tracks 50 may be supported in proper operating position on the transverse beams. S of the framework structure and present substantially at and horizontally extending roller supporting faces 51 and curvilinear end sections 51' having an angular radius of 90 lor more at the head end of the apparatus. The curvilinear sections 51 areso shaped and formed as to maintain the side wings34 of the buckets substantially in horizontally extending position, and in a position to receive the substantially at wrapper blank as deposited into the opened bucket by the blank feed mechanism 70 during their advance around the upper half portion of the head sprocket 11. The curvilinear sections 51 may rbe rigidly supported by suitable brackets 52 attached to the` adjacent framework structure. The discharge end 50 of the upper wing supporting tracks 50 terminate at a point approximately midway of the length of the can packaging apparatus and are thence replaced by a pair of wing supporting rails 57 constructed as hereafter described.
Since the side wings 34 of the buckets perform no operating function during their travel along the lower run of the bucket forming conveyor, the wings 34 are supported in inverted and horizontally extending position as shown in Fig. 1l during the entire lower run travel of the buckets by a pair of wing supporting tracks 53 which are generally Z-shaped in cross section, as shown in Figs. 7, 8, 9, 11 and l2, and which are supportedby the transverse struts 4 of the framework structure. The wing supporting tracks 53 present a at track-forming flange 54 on which the wing rollers 38 may roll. The head ends of the wing supporting tracksv53 are provided with curvilinear track forming extensions 54 which extend upwardly and partly overlap the curvilinear end sections 51 of the upper wing supporting tracks 50. Thus when the side wing supportingrollers 38 move off from the inner face of the curvilinear track sections 54', theywill move into rolling contact with theouter .faceof thefcurvilinear track sections S1 of the upper wing supporting tracks. 501` A similar pair of curvilinear track sections 54 extend. upwardly from the lower tracks 53 at the discharge end` of the apparatus and are positioned to provide support for the wing rollers 3S as they move downwardly around the discharge sprocket 12. The curvilinear track sectionsV 54 and 54 may be supported by suitable brackets 52' attached to the adjacent framework structure.
The side wing manipulating system of this apparatusA also includes means for upswinging the side wings 34 of.
the traveling buckets as they move away from the can loading station, and means for maintaining the side wings 34 and the side panels b of the wrapper blanks pocketedV therein in hugging position against the sides of the can,
group until the top panel sections d of the Wrapper blank have been lixedly secured together over the upper end of, the can group. Upswinging movement of each side. wing. 34 of the traveling buckets is effected by a series of camv upswing the side wings 34 of each can wrapping bucket. during the continuous travel thereof adjacent the can.
roller supporting plates 56.
The paired cam rails 57 serve to maintain the side wings 34 in upright position and in closely hugging rela.- tion to the can package therebetween during the travel of the buckets along the stapling or gluing station. The
paired can rails 57 may be angle shaped in cross section` as shown in Figs. 7, 8 and l5 and so formed that each rail 57 presents a vertical flange section 58 which extends parallel to the line of travel of the buckets and against which the adjacent wing roller 38 may roll. The entry ends 58 of the rail forming flange sections 58 ilared outwardly as shown in Fig. 8 to provide smooth` entry of the wing rollers 38 as the tapered camming edges 41 of the wing camming plates 40 move away from the inuence of the upswinging cam rollers 55.
The vertical rail sections 58 extend for a suicient length to assure firm securement of the infolded top panel sections d of the wrapper blank during travel of the can package through the stapling or gluing station. The vertical rail sections 58 then merge into the outwardly aring sections 59 which become gradually attened to permit outswinging movement of the bucket side wings 34' near the discharge end ot the apparatus as shown in Fig. 8. The outwardly flared sections 59 further merge into downwardly extending curvilinear sections 60 designed to support the side wings 34 in horizontal position during their travel around the upper half section of the discharge sprocket 12. The curvilinear sections 60 are partly overlapped by the upwardly extending curvilinear sections 54" associated with the lower side wing supporting tracks 53 previously described. Thus during the bucket.
travel around the discharge sprocket 12, the outfolded side wings 34 are iirst supported by the downwardly extending curvilinear track sections 60, and thence their weight is transferred to the upwardly extending curvilinear sections 54' associated with the lower guide wing supporting tracks 53.
To positively insure the outswinging movement of the vertically extending side wings 34 during their travel from the vertical rail sections 58 onto the outwardly curving rail sections S9, a pair of guide plates 61 are provided which extend between the paired wing rollers 38 as shown in Figs. 9 and 13. The paired guide plates 61 have inwardly flared entry ends 61 `and outwardly ilaredexit ends 61" to insure smooth entry and exit of the wingM rollers 38 between the guide plates 61 and the adjacent