Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS2874499 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 24, 1959
Filing dateApr 11, 1956
Priority dateApr 11, 1956
Publication numberUS 2874499 A, US 2874499A, US-A-2874499, US2874499 A, US2874499A
InventorsGottscho Ira S, Malcolm Hirschey
Original AssigneeDennison Mfg Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Transfer labeling apparatus
US 2874499 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Feb. 24, 1959 l. s. GoTTscHo ET AL v TRANSFER LABELING APPARATUS' Filed April 11, 195e Feb. 24, 1959 A l. s. GoTTscHo v'A21-Al. 2,874,499

' TRANSFER LABELING APPARATUS 4 sheets-sheet 2 Filed April 11; 1955 .NNN

INVENTORS. /P JI .60775070 ,sw 4160,01 ,//fsc'A/Ey NQN. *t v NNN ma.

Feb. 24, 1959 `r. s. GoT'rscHo r-:T AL 2,874,499

TRANSFER LABELING APPARATUS Filed April 11, 195e 4 Smets-sheet s HHM @www Feb. 24, 1959 l'. s. GoTTscHo ET AL TRANSFER LABELING APPARATUS 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 Filed April ll, 1956 QN k nited States Patent TRANSFER LABELING APPARATUS Ira '8. Gottscho, Milburn, and Malcolm Hirschey, Woodbridge, N. I., assignors, by mesne assignments, to Dennison .Manufacturing Company, Framingham, Mass., a `corporationof Massachusetts Application April.11,'1956, Serial No. 577,528 24 Claims. (Cl. 41-1) The present invention relates generally to transfer labeling and, more particularly, is directed to apparatus for effecting the transfer of printed labels'from a paper or other suitable carrier strip to transparent packaging films and the like.

In the heat transfer labeling of transparent packaging films and the like, a heat transfer base stock is provided that consists of a thin heat-transferable .coating temporarily supported by a paper carrier and receptive to printing by conventional equipment. Transfer is effected by heat sealing theprinted coated side of the base stock to the inner side of transparent packaging film prior to the employment of the latter for the wrapping or enveloping of an article. Then the paper carrier is peeled away leaving the printed coating attached to the packaging film. Since the printed image is sandwiched between the packaging film and the transfer coating, which is of inert, non-toxic material, the ink of the printed image will not come in contact with the package contents enclosed by the packaging lm and .the printed image will be `viewed through the transparent packaging film which gives a smooth, glossy appearance to the printed image and protects the latter from being rubbed off or otherwise defaced. Further, prior tothe heat transfer of the printed transfer coating to the packaging film, code numbers, prices and the like can be `printed or otherwise applied on the transfer coating.

Since the transfer coating can be opaque, translucent or colored and transfer occurs only where heat and pressure are applied, intricately shaped transfers and varied designs are made possible. Heat V:transfer labeling, when compared with adhesively applied paper labels, has the advantages of superior gloss, wider design possibilities, better conformity to the packaging lm, prevention `of the removal of the labels, applicability to packages `enclosed in stretchable transparent films and avoidance of interference with heat sealed seams in bags and wraps. When compared with printing directly on the packaging film, heat transfer labeling has the advantages of lower cost, particularly when only .a small area of the film is to be printed, since the transfer coatings can be printed on letterpress equipment `involving lower plate and ink costs than with rotogravure or exography equipment and since only clear packaging film has to be stocked by the customer employing .the latter; of permitting surprinting of the transfer coatings prior to application to the packaging film; and applicability to stretchy packaging films. When compared with roll leaf embossing, heat transfer labeling has `the advantages of greater design possibilities at lower cost and better image definition by reason of the printing on the transfer coating. i

Given the above advantages of the heat transfer labeling process, the desirability of providinga reliable apparatus for effecting the transfer of the printed transfer coatings from the paper carrier to the packaging :film becomes evident. However, the efficient vand reliable performance of heat transfer labeling requires the attainment of a number of important conditions. First of all, it vis essential to avoid the entrapment of air bubbles betweenthe transfer coating andthe packaging film or the like to which the printed transfer coating is applied. Further, the paper carrier must be stripped from the transfer coating immediately after the application of heat and pressure 'for causing the coating to adhere to the packaging film or the like, since a delay in the stripping operation until after cooling has commenced will result in tearing of the carrier or the packaging film. It is also necessary to avoid the imposition yof shearing stresses during application of the transfer coating to the packaging film, as well as during the stripping of the paper carrier from 'the transfer coating applied .to the packaging film. It is further necessary Vto effect proper registration-of .the transfer coating along the packaging film to which the latter is applied. Finally, the heat applied to effect transfer, either through the paper carrier or through the packaging film, must be adequate to ensure secure attachment of the transfer coating to the packagingfilm or the like without causing distortion orcharring ofthe transfer coating or packaging film.

Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide an apparatus capable of effecting the heat transfer labeling of transparent packaging films or other foils and Wrapping materials, and of cartons, bottles, `cans or other objects, under conditions that are ideal for such labeling.

Another object is to provide an automatic apparatus of the described character that may operate in synchronism with other machines, for example, in synchronism with a wrapping or packaging machine to .which the packaging film, having heat transfer labels applied thereto, is intermittently fed.

In accordance withan aspect of the present invention the heat transfer base stock, consisting of the paper carrier and printed transfer coating, and `the surface to which the coating is to be applied, forexample, a strip or web yof transparent packaging film, such as, cellophane or the like, are fed along converging `paths to a transfer station where the basestock and packaging film pass between a rotary heated die wheel or roll .and an impression or back-up roll which simultaneously `apply heat and pressure for securing the transfer coating to the packaging film. By reason of the rolling action of the heated die wheel, theentrapment of vair bubbles `between the transfer coating and the packaging film is positively avoided. Immediately beyond the transfer station, the paper carrier of the heat transfer base .stock and the packaging film or other surface having the transfer coating adhered thereto are directed valong diverging paths thereby to-strip the paper carrier from the transfer coating before substantial cooling can occur.

An automatic .heat transfer labeling apparatus 1embodying this invention is .further characterized by the provision of a drive mechanism Vfor the heated die Wheel that is synchronized with the operation of an associated machine that utilizes the packaging'f'lm or other surface to which the heat transfer labels are1applied so that, for example, when associated with a .packaging machine requiring intermittent feeding of packaging film thereto, a corresponding intermittent rotation will be imparted to the heated die wheel.

Another aspect of the invention resides .in the,provision of an automatic heat transfer labeling apparatus capable of applying heat transfer labels to anfintermittently advanced packaging film and the like, and wherein the drive for :intermittently rotating the heated die wheel includes a pawl and ratchet coupling and a friction clutch'therein permitting accommodation of the surface speed of the heated die to the actual speed of the advanced Y f- 2,874,499 s packaging film independent of the speed at which the drive wheel would otherwise he driven, thereby to avoid the imposition of shearing stresses tending to displace the transfer coating relative to the packaging film during the transfer operation.

Having in mind that the temperatures that may be employed -for effecting the heat transfer of the printed c oa't.- ing to the packaging film or other surface are limited, that the transferrequires a certain minimum heating of the transfer coating and that the time during which such heating can take place is limited by the speed at which the packaging film or the like must be fed to the associated machine, for example, a packaging machine, utilizing the packaging film, it is apparent that contact of the heated die wheel with the carrier paper along a narrow line may not offer a suicient area for the required heat transfer so that a relatively soft back-up or impression roll may be required to permit contact between the heated die wheel and carrier paper over an area of substantial width in the direction of the movement of such paper. However, in those cases where the heat transfer labels are applied at spaced locations along the packaging film, rather than continuously, and the heated die wheel has a segmental active portion which is radially enlarged for contact with the paper carrier at the transfer station and which has a dimension, in the circumferential direction, equal to the dimension along the carrier paper of the transfer coating, the advancement of the heat transfer base stock during each cycle will be equal to the circumferential dimension of the segmental active portion of the die wheel plus the width of the area of contact of the segmental active portion with the paper carrier resulting from the use of a relatively soft backup or impression roll. Thus, the width of the area of contact of the die wheel with the heat transfer base stock represents an overfeed and the segmental active portion of the die wheel could be made to register with the successive transfer coating representing labels on the paper carrier either by spacing apart the labels on the carrier by distances equal to such overfeed, thereby wasting paper of the carrier, or by pulling back the heat transfer base stock a distance equal to the overfeed after each transfer operation.

Accordingly, a further object of the present invention is to provide an automatic heat transfer labeling apparatus that is adapted to apply individual heat transfer labels to packaging film while the latter is backed up by a relatively soft or exible roll to increase the area of heat transfer between the heated die wheel and the heat transfer base stock, and wherein the apparatus includes an arrangement for pulling back the base stock a distance equal to the overfeed following each transfer cycle thereby to ensure proper registration of the die wheel with the transfer coatings of the base stock during each of the successive transfer cycles.

The above, and other, objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be apparent in the following detailed description of an illustrative embodiment which is to be read in connection with the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, and wherein:

Fig. 1 is a side elevational view, partly diagrammatic, of a transfer labeling apparatus constructed in accordance with one embodiment -of the present invention;

Fig. 2 is also a side elevational view of the same embodirnent of the invention, but showing the side of the apparatus opposed to that seen in Fig. l;

Fig. 3 is a front elevational View ofthe apparatus of Figs. 1 and 2, but on an enlarged scale and partly broken away and in section; i

Fig. 4 is a fragmentary, transverse sectional view taken along the line 4-4 of Fig. 2;

Fig. 5 is an elevational view of a gear transmission included in the apparatus of Figs. 1 and 2, but hidden from view in Figs. 1 and 2;

Fig. 6 is a fragmentary perspective view of a cani a'rrangement included in the apparatus of Figs. l and 2;

Fig. 7 is a diagrammatic perspective view, partly broken away and in section, of a pull back mechanism included itt the apparatus of Figs. l and 2 for effecting registration of Athe successive heat transfer labels of the base stock with the heated die wheel during the successive heat transfer cycles;

Fig. 8 is awiring diagram showing electrical circuits included in the apparatus of Figs. l and 2;

Fig. 9 is a plan view of a portion of heat transfer base stock that may be'employed in connection with the ap paratus of Figs. l and 2;

Fig. 10 is a side elevational view similar to Fig. l, but showing a transfer labeling apparatus constructed in aC- cordance with a preferred embodiment of the invention;

Fig. ll is an enlarged detail view showing a latch and releasing arrangement therefor included in the apparatus of Fig. l0; A

Fig. 12 is an enlarged perspective View of a pull back mechanism included in the apparatus of Fig. l0;

Fig. 13 is a plan View of a portion of base stock for use in the apparatus of Fig. 10; and

Fig. 14 is an enlarged sectional view taken along the line 14-14 of Fig. 10.

Referring to the drawings in detail, and initially to Fig. 1 thereof, a heat transfer labeling apparatus embodying the present invention and generally identified by the reference numeral 10 is there shown associated with a machine 12, for example, a packaging machine, in order to effect the heat transfer labeling of a strip or web of packaging film, for example, of cellophane or the like, represented by the broken line 14, and which is intermittently advanced or fed to the packaging machine 12 for utilization in the latter in the packaging of baked goods, meats, vegetables, dry foods, candy and dry goods and the like.

The packaging film is drawn from a roll or other source (not shown) and moves in the direction of the arrows on Fig. 1 along a path that is inclined upwardly to -a backup roll 16 and then inclined downwardly from the latter.

The apparatus 10 embodying this invention is adapted to effect the heat transfer of labels from a heat transfer base stock which is illustrated in Fig. 9 and there generally identied by the reference numeral 18. The heat transfer base stock 18 may include a paper strip carrier 20 having transfer coatings 22 thereon in the form of the labels that are to be applied to the packaging film 14. The heat transfer coatings 22 are receptive to printing by conventional equipment and are formed of an inert, non-toxic material. Since the heat transfer base stock, of itself, forms no part of the present invention, and is already known, any further or detailed description will be dispensed with.

The apparatus 10 for effecting the heat transfer of the printed coatings 22 from the paper carrier of the base stock 18 to the packaging film 14 includes a frame which is generally identified by the reference numeral 24 and is suitably supported by a support structure (not shown) in a position over the path followed by the packaging film 14 during its advance to the packaging machine 12. The frame 24 includes spaced apart, parallel side frame plates 26 and 28 joined together at their top and back edges by frame plates 30 and 32, respectively.

The side frame plate 28 which is closest to the path of the packaging film 14 has an upward extension 34, and an axle 36 (Fig. 1) projects laterally from the extension 34 to rotatably support a spool or drum 38 on which a supply of heat transfer base stock 18 is wound. The spool 38 is disposed in a vertical plane passing through the path of the packaging film, and the base stock 18 is led downwardly from the spool 38 and passes under a guide roll 40 which is rotatable on an axle 42 projecting laterally from side trame plate 28 adjacent the back and of the latter. The V.guide roll 40 is positioned so that a horizontal tangent tto "the bottom :thereofis also tangent to the back-up roll 16, at the :top of the latter. From the guide roll 40, the base stock 18 passes forwardly tangent to the packaging lm 14 on the 'back-up `roll and at this location, which is hereinafterreferred to as a transfer station, the `apparatus effects the heat transfer of the printed coatings 22 to the packaging lrn 14. The paper carrier 20 of the base stock continues along a straight path from the back-up roll 16, while the path of the packaging film is downwardly inclined from the latter, so that, after transfer vof the coatings 22 to the film 14, the papercarrier 20 is immediately stripped from the transfer coatings before appreciable cooling can occur.

The paper carrier 20 stripped from the transferred coatings 22 passes Aunder a guide roll 44 which is rotatable on an axle 46 extending laterally from the front portion of side frame plate 28 at the level of the axle 42. The paper carrier 20 passes upwardly from the guide roll 44 and travels over a rotated tensioning drum 4.8. Asseen t in Fig. 3, the rotated tensioning drum 48 includes spaced apart discs 50 secured on a driven shaft 52 that is journalled in the frame plates 26 and 28 and overhangs the path of tilm 14, and a core 54 extending between the discs 50 and formed of a material, such asA rubber,

having a relatively high coefficient of sliding friction with respect yto the paper of. carrier 20. A leaf spring 56 (Figs. l and 3) is supported, at one end, on a bracket 58 carried by the top frame plate 30 `and extends vforwardly from its supporting bracket to 'bear downwardly upon the paper carrier 20 running over the core 54 of the drum 48.

Thus, `as the shaft 52 of drum 4S is rotated, in a manner hereinafter described in detail, the paper carrier 20 is tensioned to ensure the stripping thereof from the coatings transferred to the packaging film.

In order to effect the transfer of the printed coatings 22 to the lilm 14 at the transfer station where the base stock 18 runs tangent to the lm 14 on the back-up roll 16, the apparatus 10 includes a die wheel assembly 60 (Figs. l and 3) which, when acoating 22 is positioned at the transfer station, effects rolling contact with the base stock and applies the necessary heat and pressure. The die wheel assembly 60 is mounted on a hollow shaft 62 (Fig. 3) which overhangs the back-up roll 16 and is vertically aligned with the axis ofthe latter. The hollow shaft 62 is journalled in a bearing 64 in the side frame plate 28 and is rotatable on a fixed axle 66 that is secured to the side frame plate 26, as by a nut 68, and that extends laterally from plate 26 into the hollow Shaft to a location at the side frame plate 28.

The rotary drive of the shaft 52 carrying the tensioning drum 48 and of the hollow shaft 62 carrying the die wheel assembly 60 are derived from a drive unit 70 (Fig. 3) mounted on a support 72 carried by the top plate 30. The drive unit 70 includes an electric motor 74 having its shaft coupled tothe input shaft 76 of a conventional variable speed transmission 78. The `output shaft 80 of the transmission 78 carries a sprocket 82 that drives a continuous chain 84. The chain 84 -runs around a sprocketr86 fixed on the end of an intermediate shaft 88 that is journalled in the side frame plates 26 and 28 and .projects laterally beyond the plate 26.y Pulleys 90 and 92 are fixed on the shafts 52 and 88, respectively, and `a belt 94 runs around the pulleys 90 `and 92 to continuously rotate the shaft 52, and hence the tensioning drum 48, from the rotated intermediate shaft 88.

The drive for the shaft 62 carrying the die wheel assembly includes a spur gear 96 fixed on intermediate shaft 88 adjacent the inner surface of side frame plate 26 and meshing with an idler spur gear98 which is rotatable on a stud shaft 100 carried by Athe frame plate 26. The idler vspur gear 98, in turn, .meshes with a spur gear 102 (Figs. Bland 5) which is mounted-on the xed axle 66 rand free to frotaterelative to the latter.

`.\Altl1ough the gear 102 is continuously'rotatemthe apparatus 10 includes an arrangement for intermittently communicating the rotation of that gear to the coaxial hollow shaft 62 in synchronism with vthe operation ofthe associatedtpackaging machine 12 or the like so that the die wheel 'assembly 60 ywill be Arotated to advance the heat transfer base stock 18 only during the transfer of a coating 22 to the packaging film 14 advanced over the back-up roll 16 by the feeding action of the packagingfmachine.

The arrangement in the apparatus 10 for communicating the rotation of gear 102 to the shaft 62 is similar to a corresponding arrangement in the co-pending application for United States Letters Patent tiled on December 22, 1955, Lby Malcolm'I-Iirschey and Andrew J. Alessi, Jr., and identied as Serial No. 554,834. Such `an arrangement includes an VVaxially arranged series of friction clutch discs 104 disposed at the side of gear 102 facing away 'from side frame plate 26, with alternate discs of the `series `being constrained to rotate `with the gear 102 by means of Vpins 106 which extend axially from the gear and are received in suitable peripheral recesses of those alternate discs. A sleeve 108 is rotatableV on the axle 66 between the hollow shaft 62 and the side vframe plate 26. The discs 104, while being mounted on the 'sleeve 108, Aare free to rotate relative to the latter. A

yoke ring 110 is axially movable on the sleeve 108 but held against rotation relative to the latter and, at the vend facing toward the series of friction clutch discs 104,

the yoke ring 110 has an annular, axially projecting rib engageable with the adjacent end of the series of discs .104 so that, when the yoke ring `is displaced axially toward the side frame plate 26, the series of discs 104 is axially compacted or compressed together between the gear 102 and ring 110 thereby to transmit the rotation of the former to the latter and thence Vto thefsleeve 108. A ratchet wheel 112 is fixed upon the end of sleeve 108 remotefrom the side frame plate 26 for rotation with the sleeve 108, and the peripheral teeth of the ratchet wheel are engaged by a pawl 114 that is rockably mount- -ed upon a stud projecting axially from a radial cam 116 secured on the adjacent end of the hollow shaft 62. The pawl 114 and the teeth of the ratchet wheel 112, against which the pawl is `spring urged, are arranged so that rotation of the sleeve 108 will be transmitted thereby to the hollow shaft 62. However, if the hollow shaft 62 is rotated at an angular speed greater than that of the gear 102, the ratchet 112 and pawl 114.will disengage or move relative -to each other in order `to permit such relatively fast rotation of the hollow shaft.

It `is apparent that the yoke ring 110 and the discs 104 form parts of a friction clutch for transmitting the rotation of gear 102 to the ratchet .wheel 112, and-that such clutch can be engaged and disengaged by effecting axial movement of the yoke ring along the sleeve 108. In order to effect such axial movement of the yoke ring 110, the apparatus 10 includesa yoke member 118 which, at its lowerV end, is Vpivotally mounted, as at 120, on a bracket 122 extending from the side frameplate 26. Intermediate its ends, the yoke member 118 has a circular or ring portion-124 carrying rollers 126 at diametrically'opposed locations for engagement between the radial flanges of the yoke `ring 110. Accordingly, the rollers 126, without resisting rotation of the yoke ring 110, will effect axial displacement of the latter in response to rocking of the yoke member 118 about the pivot 120. When the yoke member 118 is rocked in the counterclockwise direction, as vviewed'in Fig. 3, the yoke ring 110 is moved axially inthe direction compressng or compacting the friction clutch discs 104 so that the clutch is thereby engaged andV transmits the rotation of `gear 102 to sleeve 108 and'hencc to the ratchet wheel 112. However, when the yoke member 118 is free to rock in the `clockwise direction, as -viewed .on Fig. 3, the yoke ring 110 relieves the friction clutch discs 104 of 7 the axially compacting force thereby disengaging the clutch.

Rocking of the yoke member 118 in the counterclockwise direction, that is, in the direction for effecting engagement of the clutch, is effected by a cam member 128 carried by a cam holder 130 and acting against a roller 132 rotatably supported in a bracket 134 on the upper end of the yoke member. The cam holder 130 is slidable in the direction normal to the top frame plate 30, that is, vertically, in suitably arranged guides 136 carried by a bracket 138 depending from the top frame plate.v 'Ihe cam member 128 is pivotally mounted, adjacent its upper end, on the cam holder 130 and is urged in the direction toward the roller 132 by a spring which is shown in broken lines on Fig. 3, and is interposed between the holder 130 and the cam member. The edge or face of the cam member 128 engaged by the roller 132 is provided with a recess engaged by the roller when the cam holder 130 is in its lowered position, as in Fig. 3, and with an inclined plane 140 extending downwardly from the recess so that, as the cam holder 130 is displaced upwardly, the roller 132 rides on the inclined plane 140 to rock the yoke member 118 in the direction effecting engagement of the described friction clutch. When the cam holder -130 is in its illustrated lowered position with the roller 132 received in the recess of the cam member 128, the yoke member 118 is free to rock in the clockwise direction to an extent suicient to effect disengagement of the associated friction clutch. Upward movement of the cam holder 130 is adjustably limited by a stop bolt 142 extending adjustably downward from a bracket 144 on the top frame plate 30 through an opening in the latter so that the lower end of the stop bolt is engageable by a portion of the cam holder at the upward limit of the movement of the latter. v

The upper end of the cam holder 130 also extends through an opening in the top frame plate 30 and is subjected, above the latter, to the downward force of a return leaf spring 146 (Fig. 3) which is supported, at one end, upon the top surface of the plateV 30. Thus, the cam holder 130 is normally urged downwardly by the spring 146 to a position where the friction clutch between the gear` 102 and the ratchet wheel 112 is disengaged. The upward movement of the cam holder 130, for effecting 4engagement of the above mentioned friction clutch, is obtained by electro-mechanically operated means that include a solenoid 148 having its armature 150 connected to one end of a double-armed lever 152. The lever 152 is pivoted intermediate its ends, as at 154, upon a standard 156 extending upwardly from the plate 30, and the end of lever 152 remote from the armature 150 is connected to one end of a helical tension spring 158 having its other end connected to an eye-bolt 160 threaded adjustably into the upper end of the cam holder 130.

When the solenoid 148 is energized, the armature 150 thereof is instantaneously retracted, or moved downwardly, to rock the lever 152 in the clockwise direction, as viewed in Fig. 3, thereby increasing the tension in spring 158, and such increased tension in the spring then is sufficient to overcome the forces resisting upward movement of the cam holder 130. The use of the spring 158 between the lever 152 and the campholder permits the instantaneous action of the solenoid 148 and avoids the overloading and overheating of the solenoid that would result if the load of the cam holder 130 and the return spring 146 were directly transmittedto the armature 150 of Ythe solenoid.

As seen in Fig. 8, the solenoid 148 which causes upward movement of the cam holder 130 may b e energized by an electrical circuit that includes a source 162 of electrical energy, for example, in the form of an electric storage battery, connected, at o ne side, to a conductor I164 extendingto ground and, at the other' side, to a conductor 166. The conductor 1'66 is Aconnected to' one 8 end of the coil of solenoid 148 and has a switch, fof example, a micro-switch 168 interposed therein, while a conductor 170 extends from the other end of the solenoid coil to ground so that the solenoid 148 is energized only when the normally open switch 168 is manipulated to its closed condition.

In order to synchronize the operation of the transfer labeling apparatus 10 with the operation of the associated packaging machine 12 which utilizes the packaging lm 14 after the label forming coatings 22 have been transferred to the film, the micro-switch 168 may be operated by a cam 172 (Fig. l) on a timing shaft 174 of the packaging machine 12. Thus, the solenoid 148 will be intermittently energized to effect engagement of the friction clutch between the gear 102 and ratchet wheel 112 for rotating the hollow shaft 62 carrying the die wheel assembly 60 only during a portion of the operating cycle of the machine 12.

Referring now to Figs. l and 3, it will be seen that the die wheel assembly 60 includes a body 176 held on the shaft 62 between clamping nuts 178 which are threaded on the latter. The body 176 may have a radially enlarged sector-shaped portion 180 which, as the shaft 62 is rotated, comes into rolling contact with the paper carrier 20 of the base stock 18 and presses the latter against the film 14 on the back-up roll 16. The back-up roll 16 is preferably mounted in a manner permitting adjustment of its axis toward and away from the axis of shaft 62 so that the pressure between the sector-shaped portion 180 of the die-wheel body and the backup roll can be varied.

Since the printed coatings 22 of the base stock 18 are transferable to the packaging film 14 by heat and pressure, the sector-shaped portion 180 of the die wheel body is heated, for example, by electrical heating elements 182 received in suitable bores formed in the portion 180 parallel to the axis of the shaft 62. The current for energizing the heating elements 182 may be transmitted to the latter through conductors 184 and 186 which are connected to slip rings 188 and 190 mounted on an insulating sleeve 191 carried by the shaft 62. The slip rings 188 and 190 rotating with the shaft 62 are slidably engaged by fixed brushes 192 and 194 which are, in turn, connected to terminals 196 and 198 receiving electrical energy from a suitable source. Preferably, a conventional thermostatic control (not shown) is interposed in the electrical circuit for energizing the heating elements 182 so that the temperature of the heated die wheel may be maintained at an adjustably determined level.

It is apparent that, when a dic wheel body having a radially raised sector-shaped portion 180 is employed, as shown in the drawings, the base stock 18 will be advanced by the die wheel only during that portion of the rotational cycle of the latter when the sector-shaped portion 180 is disposed for rolling contact with the base stock on the backup roll 16. During the remainder of the rotational cycle o-f the die wheel assembly, that is, when the raised sector-shaped portion 180 faces away from the back-up roll 16, the back-up sheet 18 can remain at rest, or be displaced rearwardly as hereinafter described in detail, while the packaging film 14 advances toward the associated machine 12. Thus, the raised 'sector-shaped portion 180, which has a surface area corresponding to the area of the coating 22 to be transferred, makes it possible to dispose the successive printed coatings 22 adjacent to each other on the paper carrier 20 of the base stock even when such printed coatings are to be applied at widely spaced apart locations on the packaging film 14.

Further, it will be noted that the nature of the rotational coupling between the driven gear 102 and the shaft 62 carrying the die wheel assembly 60 tends to Vavoid the occurrence of shearing stresses between the film 14 and printed coating 22 during the transfer of the latter to the packaging film. Thus, if during the answer-9o transfer oft-aprintedftcating1.221to the packaging zflm .14,:t1tensurfa'ee :spee`d:of' the heatedfsector-shaped; portion -180oft therdie :wheel tdoesfnotV exactly correspond :tov the surfacezspeed rofftherpackag'in'gzlm, the relative movements ofithesratche'twheel 112.1and lpawl 114and between the friction :clutch discs104 twill. permit 'the `accommodationroftlre factual speed .ofthe die wheel to the speed of the :packagingiilmdndependent of the rotational speed ofthe driven :gear ,102.

Y'lfhexmovements of .thetcam holder 13.0 bythe spring 1=46, inzonetdirection, `andlby the solenoid 148, in the oppositetdirection, in additiontoeffecting the disengagement and engagement,` respectively, of the friction clutch between:the;gear '102 and the ratchet wheel 112, may also ,be vemployed to respectively engage andrelease a latchmechanismtnot shown) which maybe similar to thezlatchmechanism .disclosed in the above mentioned applicationfor United `States Letters Patent tiled on December22, 1955 by Malcohn Hirschey andAndrew I. Alessi, Jr., and identified as Serial No. 554,834. Such .tlatch vmechanism ensures the .proper positioning of 'therdie wheel assembly, for example, inthe position of Fig. 1, at `the .commencement of each label transferring operating cycle of the apparatus 10 and may includesa :roller'rotatably mounted in a forked lower extension of the cam holder andridingon theperiphery ofa'ra'dial fiangexedon thehollow shaft 62 next to cam :1l-6 and having a vradially opening notch in the lperiphery so'that, when the latch roller rides on the periphery ofthe radial flange, the cam holder 130 is maintained in its elevated condition vcorresponding to the engaged condition oftthefrictionrclutch and the cam holder1-30 can move downwardly to effect disengagement of thefriction clutchonly when thelatch roller'is receivedrinzthe peripheral notch of the, radial flange.

With such a latch mechanism, the solenoid 1485need be-energized only` lat the commencement of theA operating cycle to Withdraw the Vlatch roller from the peripheral notchtof=the.radial flange and `to initiate engagement of thexfriction clutch. Thereaftenthe friction clutch will remain engaged untilthe die wheel assembly returns to the-rotationallposition where the latch roller is again received inthe peripheral notch of the associated radial angeon. shaft 62. Thus, -after eachoperating cycle, the die wheel-'assembly 60 iszreturned tothesamepredetermined rotational position.

If the circumferential-extentofthe `sector-shaped portion 180 of the ldie wheel body is equalto thedimension of the printed coating 22 in directionalong the base stock 18, thellatter will be advanced atdistance equal to that circumferential extent during eachrevolution of the die wheel assembly`60provided that the back-up roll 16 is of a hardfmaterial so that the rolling contact of the sectorshaped portion 180 with the paper carrier 20 `of the base stock isalonga narrow line. However, such line contact withrth'ebase stock provides only a small area for heat transfer from the heateddie'wheel body to the printed transfer coating 22 and packaging lm 14 so that relatively high temperaturesmaybe required ,to obtain the heatingnecessary for achieving transferand secured adherence of the printed coatings 22 to the packaging lm. Since the temperatures that the transfer coatings and packaginglm can-withstandrwithout charring or other mutilation are limited, it is. necessary, under some conditions, toincrease the area` for heat transferA from the die wheel body to the base stock, and this can be achieved by employing a rubber, or other relativelytsoft, back-up roll 16, so that the/rolling contact ofthe sector-shaped portion 180 of the die wheel body-With the base stock 18,occurs over a laterally extending band-shaped area :rather than lalong a thin line. However, when rolling contact occurs over-a band-shaped area, the'base stock 18 is advanced a distance-equal to the circumferential extent of the sectorshapedportion 180fplusv the' width of the band-shapedarea 'of' Contact so that, in the case :wherethe successive transfercoatings` 22 .are y'closely adjacent to each other onthe paper carrier 20, :anoverfeedofthebase. stock 18 .would result. Such overfeedin'gjcould be remediedby further spacing apart the successive coatings 22 .by a distance equal tothe xvid'tlr'ofthe band-shaped area rof contact, but this expediencywould result in a waste of the paper carrier 20.

In accordance with the presentinvention, the problem of such overfeedingof the base stock 18 resulting from the band-shaped area of contact with thesector-shaped portion 180 of the die Wheel is solved by providing a pullback mechanism which operates to pull back the base stock 18 a distance` equal to the overfeed .during each revolution of the die wheel assembly 60 when the sectorshaped portion is disposed out of contact with the base stock so that, upon the return of thedie wheel toits initial position (Fig. l), the foremost transfer coating or label 22 on the base stock 18 will properly register .with the active sector-shaped portion 180 of the die wheel.

rPhe pull-back mechanism of the embodiment ofthe invention illustrated in Figs. land 2 is generallyidentied by the reference numeral 200 and, as shown in the `Figs. l and 4 of the drawings, includes upper and lower plates 202and 204, respectively, between which the base stock 18 passeson its way to the transfer station. The plates 202 and 204 are mounted in a frame 206 that overhangs the path of the packaging lm 14 and that is movable in the direction parallel to the path of the base stock 18 between the rear guide roller 40 and the transfer station. For example, as shown on Figs. 3 and 4, the frame 206 may include a lateral support portion 208 extending below the lower edges of-the side frame plates 26 and .28'and having spaced apart-upward extensions 210 and 212-dis posed between Vthe side-frame plates and carrying rollers 214 and 216, respectively, which are received in guide tracks 21S and 220 formed along the' lower edge portions of plates 26 and 28, respectively.

The plate 202 is suspended from the armature 222 of a solenoid 224 mounted within the frame 206 (Fig. 4) so that,'when'the solenoid V224 is deenergized, the plate 202 merelyfrests upon thebase stock 18 and does not prevent the movement of the latter between the plates 202 and l204. However, when the solenoid 224 is energized, the plate 202 is urged downwardly thereby clamping the base stock 18 between the plates 202 and 204.

The frame 206 is reciprocated along its path of movement parallel to the path of the base stock 18 from rear guideroller 40to the transfer station in response torotation `of the die wheel carrying shaft`62, and the energization ofthe solenoid 224 is controlled so that, after the completion of a transfer operation and when theY sectorshapedportion 180 of the die wheel is out of contact with the base stock 18 and is returning to its initial position', the solenoid 224 will be energized to clamp the base stock between plates 202 and 204 during the movement of the frame 206 in the direction opposed to the normal feeding movement of the basestock through a distance equal t the previous overfeed of the base stock.

In order to etect the. desired reciprocating movement of the frame 2.06,` a lever 226 may be pivoted intermediate its ends, as at 228 (Fig. 3), on the bracket 112 for rocking'in averticalplane and a cam follower roller 230'is rotatably mounted on the upper end of lever 226-and engages the periphery of cam 116 rotating with shaft 62. The lower end of lever 226 is connected, by a pivoted link 232, tothe frame 206, and a tension spring 234 (Fig. l) is anchored at one end to the frame plate 28, as at 236, and at its other end to the frame 206, as at 238, to

' yieldably urge the frame206 forwardly and maintain contact of the follower roller 230 with thecam 116.

Thus, when the roller 230 engages radially smallV portions of the,cam,116 thespring 234 movesframe y206 forwardly and, as radially large portions of the cam 116 1 1 engage the cam follower roller 230, the lever 226 is rocked in the direction moving the frame 206 rearwardly.

The solenoid 224 is deenergized during most of the movement of frame 206 and is energized only during the rearward movement of frame 206 when the latter reaches a position that is spaced from the rearmost position thereof by a distance equal to the extent of the overfeed so that, during the remainder of terminal portion of the rearward movement of frame 206, the plates 202 and 204 will grip the base stock 18 and pull back the latter a distance suliicient to compensate for the overfeed.

In the above described embodiment of the invention, the circuit (Fig. 8) for energizing the solenoid 224 includes a micro-switch 240 and cooperating contacts 242 and 244 connected in series in a conductor 246 extending from one side of the source 162 to one end of the coil of solenoid 224, and a conductor 248 extending from the other end of the solenoid coil to ground so that the solenoid 224 is energized only when the micro-switch 240 is in its closed condition simultaneously with the occurrence of electrical contact between the contacts 242 and 244. As seen in Figs. 7 and 8, the contacts 242 and 244 are embedded in the upper and lower plates 202 and 204, respectively, and are exposed at the confronting surfaces of such plates, and the base stock 1-8 has spaced apart openings 250 therein (Figs. 7 and 9) extending therethrough. The openings 250 register laterally with the contacts 242 and 244 so that, when an opening 250 is at the location of the contacts 242 and 244, the latter engage through the registered opening 250 and, at all other times the base stock provides insulation between the contacts to interrupt or break the energizing circuit of the solenoid 224. The several openings 250 are disposed along the base stock 18 so that an opening 250 will be aligned with the contacts 242 and 244 at that time during each operating cycle when pull-back movement of the base stock is to be commenced.

The micro-switch 240 is of the normally closed variety and is adapted to be opened by the action of a cam 252 (Figs. 3 and 6) on the die wheel carrying shaft 62. For this purpose, the micro-switch 240 can be mounted on the side frame plate 28 (Fig. 3) and provided with a resilient linger 254 having a follower roller 256 riding on the periphery of cam 252 so that, when the roller 256 engages the radially large portions of cam 252, resilient linger 254 is flexed to press the actuating plunger of microswitch and thereby open the contacts of the latter.

The cam 252 is shaped and arranged on the shaft 62 so that, when the die wheel assembly 60 moves from its initial position (Fig. 1) upon engagement of the friction clutch between gear 102 and ratchet wheel 112, the micro-switch 240 is opened to deenergize the solenoid 224 even though the contacts 242 and 244 are then engaged across an opening 250 of the base stock 18. Thus, the gripping action of plates 202 and 204 upon the base stock is relieved, and the latter can be advanced by the action thereon of the sector-shaped portion 180 of the die wheel independent of the speed of forward movement of the frame 206. The cam 252 is further shaped to permit closing of micro-switch 240 after the sector-shaped portion 180 has moved out of contact with the base stock so that, when the contacts 242 and 244 are again aligned with an opening 250 of the base stock during return movement of the frame 206, the circuit for energizing solenoid 224 can again be completed to cause pull-back of the base stock.

In cases where the die wheel assembly is intermittently rotated, the energizing circuit for the solenoid 224 will remain closed during the rest periods between successive operating cycles so that the plates 202 and 204 clamp the base stock 18 and prevent premature advance of the latter by the action of tensioning drum 48 on the paper carrier of the base stock.

Although an illustrative arrangement has been disclosed for controlling the energization of solenoid 224, it

is apparent that the function of the contacts 242 and 244 engaging each other through an opening 250 of the base stock could be performed by a photo-electric cell or electric eye operating an associated switch and being energized by a light beam passing through the opening 250. Further, the entire electro-magnetic arrangement for clamping the plates 202 and 204 upon the base stock 18 could be replaced by a mechanical arrangement operating on a principle similar to that of a mouse trap and having a finger adapted to drop into an opening 250 of the base stock to clamp the plates 202 and 204 and a reset or release device for freeing the plates from the base stock when forward feeding of the latter commences.

In Fig. 10 of the drawings, a transfer labeling apparatus constructed in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the invention is illustrated and generally identified by the reference numeral 10a. The apparatus 10a is generally similar to the previously described apparatus 10 and differs from the latter only with respect to the mechanism provided for controlling the feeding of the base stock and for pulling back the latter after each transfer operation to compensate for the overfeeding of the base stock resulting from the employment of a soft or flexible backup roll.

In the apparatus 10a constructed in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the invention, the pull-back mechanism 200 and the associated controlling arrangement of the previously described apparatus 10 are replaced by a release mechanism, which is generally identified by the reference numeral 201, and a pull-back assembly, which is generally identified by the reference numeral 203, while the other parts of the apparatus 10a are substantially unchanged and are identified by the same reference numerals employed in describing the corresponding parts of apparatus 10, but with the letter a appended thereto.

The release mechanism 201 (Figs. 10 and 14) includes a release wheel 205 having a cylindrical body 207 secured on a shaft 209. The shaft 209 is rotatably mounted in suitable bearings 211 carried'by the side frame plates 26a and 28a and extends laterally from the latter so that the release wheel 205, on the extending portion of the shaft, overhangs the path of travel of the packaging film 14a. The shaft 209 is disposed with its axis parallel to, and intermediate, the axes of the die wheel assembly a and the guide roll 40a, and preferably at a level above the axis of the die wheel assembly.

The base stock 18a (Fig. 13) intended for use with the apparatus 10a includes a continuous paper carrier 20a and transfer coatings 22a on one side of the carrieradapted to be transferred, by heat and pressure, to the packaginglm 14a. The base stock 18a, which is wound on the spool or drum 38a, passes from the latter under the back guide roll 40a and then over the release wheel 205 before passing between the die wheel assembly 60a and the packaging film 14a on the back-up roll 16u. As in the first described embodiment, the die wheel assembly 60a is operative to apply heat and pressure through the paper carrier 20a to each successive transfer coating 22a for transferring the latter to the packaging film 14a as the latter is supported by the back-up roll at the transfer station. The paths of the paper carrier 20a and of the packaging film 14a diverge after passing Vbetween the die wheel assembly and the back-up roll so that the transfer coatings will be stripped from the paper carrier immediately following the transfer of such coatings to the packaging film and before substantial cooling can occur. In order to achieve such divergence of the paths of the packaging film 14a and of the paper carrier 20a from the transfer station, the carrier 20a passes generally horizontally under the forward guide roll 44a and then upwardly over the rotated tensioning drum 48a, while the packaging film 14a, with the transfer coatings 22a applied thereto, follows a downwardly inclined path from the back-up roll 16a t0 the 13 packaging machine `or tthe'like which Autilizes the packaging film.

`The release wheel 205 cooperates withithe bas'e stock 18a to permitfeeding or advance of the latter past the transfer station only -when'lthe wheel 205 Iis-'eeto'rotate. For this lpurpose,\th`e fpaper- 'carrier20tz 'of the base stock has pairs of laterally aligned V.notches 'or cutouts 2'50a in the opposite longitudinal edges thereofat'lcat1ons intermediate adjacent transfer vcoatings 22a'oi1`the carrier (Fig. 13), and the release wheel `205 ha's -projections 213 (Figs. and 114) extending radially from the cylindrical body 207 'and located to be received in the notches250a as the baserstock 1821 passes 'over the release wheel.

The projections 213 are arrangedlin pairsspacedlaterally apart by a distanceIequal tothe-lateral spacing between each pair of notches250a, and'f'tli'e circumference of the release wheel body 4-207 is a whole multiple of, three times in the'illustrated-embodimerit, the "distance measured longitudinallyalong thebase'stock betweenthe successive pairs of eutouts `250a, with the circumferential spacing between the successive pairs of projections l213 being equal to that longitudinal 'distance between the successive pairs of notches 250a. The projections 213 may be formed by pinsrecei'ved in'suitably located-radial boresformed in the body 207 and held in the latter'by set screws 215 (Fig. 14).

'Ihe rotational `movement of `release wheel `2'05 is controlled so that the `latter is free Vto 'rotate' only when the heated, sector-shaped portion 181m 'of the die wheel assembly 60a is disposed for v'rolling fcoiitact with the base stock to effect advancement ofthe latter during transfer of a coating 22a`torthe film =1'4a. Atl all tirnes when the sector-shaped portion 18`0a of tliedie wheel is free of the base stock 118a,-ther` lease -wheel 205 is locked against rotation thereby 4to preventfeedirigofthe base stock by the tensioning drum 48a.

In order to synchronize the control of therotational movement of release wheell`2'05 with the'rotationof die `wheel assembly `60a so *that the release wheel'205 will be freed for rotation-'only when the die wheelassembly 205. As seen in Fig. 11,"the cam '217 rotatable with the die wheel assembly has a spiral peripheryfand Ia radial step 225 between theradially inner and outer portions of the perpihery whichfaces in the direction opposed to the normal rotationshaft 62a as indicatedby the arrow, while the latch 'lever21-9 has a rearwardly facing step 227 in its lower edge. Thus, as the cam217 rotates from the position of YFig. 11, the1periphery of the cam comes into contacttwith 'the' lower edge of lever 219 and thereafter progressively frocks the latter upwardly about the pivot 221 Vuntil the step `225registers with the step 227 to permit the downward rocking of the latch lever .by the force of gravity. j

The ratchet wheel`223 Vof the illustrated embodiment 'has three teeth thereon, one forJ each pair 'of projections 213 on the release Wheel 20.5, with the radial surfaces 229 of the ratchet wheel teeth facing in thel direction of the normal rotation of wheel 223'With'shaft' 209, While `the latch lever 219 has a latch member231adjustably mounted on its lower edgeso `that*theback 'end of the member 231 is engageable Ywith the `radial surface '229 of a tooth on the ratchet Wheel 223, to halt rotation of the release wheel l205, when the latchtlever '219 is in a lowered position.

df thecam immediately before registry of shoulder or step 225 with step 272, the latch lever is rocked upwardly to Vanextent suiicient to remove the back end of ylatch member 231 from the path vof travel of the radial tooth surfaces 229 on ratchet wheel 223, as shownin Fig. l-l.

The cam `217 isvangularly disposed'on shaft 62a relative to the die wheel assembly 60a carried by the same shaft so that thelatch lever 219 will be rocked upwardly a suicient extent to release latch member 231 from a tooth of ratchet wheel 223 when the sector-shaped portion 180a of the die wheel effects initial engagement with the base stock 18a to advance -the latter. Thereafter, the step 225 registers with the step 227 to permit downward rocking of the latch lever 219 and, during rotation of the release wheel 205 by advancement of the base stock, the latch member 231i rides on .the peripheryof the ratchet wheel 223 and halts rotation of the latter when `a radial `tooth surface 229 again'engages the back end of member 231. Thus, Vduring the transfer phase of each revolution of thecam 217 with vthe die wheel assembly 60a, the release wheel 205 is permitted to turn through degrees and allows the base stock to advance a distance equal to the longitudinal distance between the successivetpairs'of notches 250a in the paper carriage.

In order to compensate forrthe overfeeding of the base stock 18a that occurs when a back-up roll 16a having a soft or resilient surface is employed, the pull-back assembly 203 acts yieldably against the base stock 18a at a location between the release Vwheel 205 and the transfer station Where the baselstock and lm 14a run together over the back-up roll 14a, and causes the base stock to travel along a relatively ylong path between the release wheel 'and 'transfer station. When the base stock 18a is advanced by the sector-shaped portion :1 of the die wheel through a distance that'exceeds the vcircumferential movement of the release wheel '205 by the `amount of the ,previously ldescribed `overfeed, `the -pullback assembly 203 yields to shorten the path of the base stock between the release wheel and transfer `station and thereby make available the length of base stock required for the overfeed. However, when the sector-shaped portion 180:: again moves out of contact with the base stock, vthe pull-back assembly203 overcomes the tension of the tensioning drum 48a and restores the base stock to its original, relatively long, path between the release wheel 205 and the transfer station.

As seen in Figs. 10'and 1.2, `the pull-back assembly 203 capable of performing the above functions may include a plate 233 having -an arcuate lower edge portion 235 and rockably mounted, at its upper edge, on an axle 237 projecting laterally Afrom the side frame plate 28a Vat a ylocation between release wheel 205 Yanddie wheel assembly 60a. .Atorsionspring 239 (Fig. 12) acts, at its opposite ends, against an anchor pin 241 projecting from plate 28a and against the rockable plate 233 to yieldably ur-ge the latter in the `counter-clockwise direction, as viewed in Fig. 10. The rocking of the plate 233 by the spring 239 is'limited by a stop 243 projecting from side frame plate 28a and disposed so that, when plate 233 contacts stop 243, the curved edge portion 235 of the pull-back plateengaging the base stock 18a will cause the latter to follow a relatively long path between the release wheel 205 and the transfer station. lt should be noted that the pull-back plate 233 is sufficiently large,'in the direction from its arcuate edge 235 to the axle v237, so that, in all'rocked positions of plate 233, the path of the base stock from edge 235 to front guide roll l44a is substantially straight and tangent torroll 16a.

'When the sector-shaped portion 180a of the die wheel `rst engages the base stock,`the pull-back plate 233 is disposed against the' stop 243. However, when the sectorshaped portion 180a feeds the base stock a distance greater than one-third of the circumference of the release wheel 205, the pull-back plate 233 is rocked in the clockwise direction, as viewed on Fig. 10, by the increased tension in the base stock so that the runs of the latter leading to and from the pull-back plate will encase a larger angle, thereby providing a shorter path for the base stock between the release wheel and the transfer station and making available the length of base stock necessary for the overfeed. Upon the movement of the sector-shaped portion 180a of the die wheel out of contact with the base stock, the spring 239 acting on the pull-back plate 233 is suiciently strong to overcome the tension in the base stock resulting from the action of the tensioning drum 48a and the plate 233 is returned to its original position against stop 243, thereby again increasing the length of the path followed by the base stock between the release wheel and transfer station and pulling back the base stock a distance equal to the previous overfeed thereof.

Although only the release mechanism 201 and the pullback assembly 203 of the apparatus a have been described in detail herein, it is to be understood that the apparatus 10a may be similar to the apparatus 10 in all other respects.

It will be apparent that, in each of the illustrative embodiments of the invention described in detail herein, provision has been made for accurately registering each of the transfer coatings on the base stock with the active, sector-shaped portion of the die wheel at the start of the transfer operation, and for pulling back the base stock after each transfer operation to correct for the ovcrfeeding of the base stock resulting from the use of a soft or resilient back-up roll to increase the area of heat transfer.

Since the sector-shaped portion 180 or 18011 of the die wheel in each of the illustrated embodiments effects rolling contact with the base stock during transfer of the printed transfer coating from the paper carrier to the packaging film 14, or 14a there is no danger that bubbles of air will be entrapped between the transfer coating and the packaging film.

Although the transfer coatings of the base stock have been described as being previously printed, it is apparent that each illustrated transfer labeling apparatus may be arranged in tandem with a marking apparatus, for example, of the kind disclosed in the above identified copending application of Malcolm Hirschey and Andrew I. Alessi, Jr., so that blank transfer coatings on the base stock are marked and then immediately applied or transferred to the packaging film. Such a tandem arrangement could also be employed to apply code markings and the like to previously printed transfer coatings.

Further, although each illustrated transfer labeling apparatus has been described in association with a packaging machine 12 or 12a for transferring the transfer coatings from above to packaging film 14 or 14a utilized by the associated machine, it is to be understood that each apparatus can be employed to transfer labels and the like to the top, bottom or side surfaces of cartons, bottles, cans and other solid articles.

While the die wheel assembly 60 or 60a has a sectorshaped portion 180 or 180a to act upon the base stock only during a portion of the rotational cycle thereof, the die wheel may be formed to continuously engage the base stock, for example, when applying a continuous transfer coating to the packaging film, rather than separated label forming transfer coatings, as in the illustrated embodiments.

Finally, although illustrative embodiments of the invention have been described in detail herein and shown in the accompanying drawings, the invention isA not limited to those particular embodiments, and various changes and modifications may be effected therein, in addition to those specifically mentioned above, without departing 16 from the scope or spirit of the invention as defined in the appended claims.

What is claimed is:

l.v Transfer labeling apparatus for use in connection with base stock including a continuous paper carrier having lable definingv transfer coatings thereon transferable to an advancing web of packaging material by the application of heat and pressure; said apparatus comprising a back-up roll having a resilient surface, means for guiding the paper carrier and the web along paths that run together on the surface of said back-up roll and then diverge and with the transfer coatings on the carrier facing the web, a rotary die wheel having a heated, sector-shaped active portion with the circumferental extent of the latter being equal to the longitudinal extent of each of the transfer coatings along the paper carrier, said die wheel being disposed so that, when said active portion faces said back-up roll during each revolution of the die wheel, heat and pressure are applied to the base stock and web on the back-up roll over an area of substantial width and the base stock is advanced a distance equal to the sum of the circumferential extent of said active portion and the width of said area, means for rotating said die wheel in synchronism with the advancement of the web of packaging material and means pulling back the base stock a distance substantially equal to the Width of said area during each revolution of said die wheel when said active portion faces away from said back-up roll, the apparatus including means cooperating with registration apertures in the base stock for establishing a definite relation between such a registration aperture and the active portion of the die wheel, so that the successive transfer coatings can be adjacent to each other on the paper carrier and said pulling back means will register one of the transfer coatings with said active portion of the die wheel during each revolution of the latter.

2. Transfer labeling apparatus for use in connection with base stock including a continuous paper carrier having label transfer coatings thereon transferable to an ladvancing web of packaging material by the application of heat and pressure; said apparatus comprising a backup roll having a resilient surface, means for guiding the paper carrier and the web along paths that run together on the surface of said back-up roll and then diverge and with the transfer coatings on the carrier facing the web, a rotary die wheel having a heated, sector-shaped active portion with the circumferential extent of the latter being equal to the longitudinal extent of each of the transfer coatings along the paper carrier, said die wheel being disposed so that, when said active portion faces said back-up roll during each revolution of the die wheel, heat and pressure are applied to the base stock and web on the back-up roll over an area of substantial width and the base stock is advanced a distance equal to the sum of the circumferential extent of said active por- -tion and the width of said area, means for rotating said die wheel in synchronism with the advancement of 'the web of packaging material, means pulling back the base stock a distance substantially equal to the width of said area during each revolution of said die Wheel when said active portion faces away from said back-up roll, the apparatus including means cooperating with registration apertures in the base stock for establishing a detinite relation between such a registration aperture and the active portion of the die wheel, so that the successive transfer coatings can be adjacent to each other on the paper carrier and said pulling back means will register one of the transfer coatings with said active portion of the die Wheel during each revolution of the latter, and means yieldably tensioning the paper carrier after passage of the latter betweensaid die wheel and back-up 'roll to ensure separation of a transfer coating from the paper carrier after transfer of the coating to theV web of packaging material while permitting the pulling back I7 movement `ofthe basey stock for registering the transfer coatingsV with said active portion of the die Wheel.

3. Transfer labeling apparatus for use in connection with base stock including a continuous paper carrier having label defining transfer coatings thereon' transferable to an advancing web of packaging material by the application of heat and pressure; said apparatus comprising a back-up roll having a resilient surface,means for guiding the paper carrier and the web along paths that run together on the surface of said back-up roll and then diverge andl with the transfer coatings on the carrier facing'the web, a rotary vdie wheel having a heated, sectorshaped active portion with the circumferential extent of the latter being equal to the longitudinal extent ofeach of the transfer coatings along the paper carrier, said die wheel being disposed so that, when said active portion faces said back-up roll during each revolution of the die wheel,heat and pressure are applied to the base stock and web onv the back-up roll over an area of substantial width andthe base stock is advanced a distance equalto the sum of the circumferential extent of` said active portion and the width of said area, means rfor rotating said die wheel in synchronism with the advancement of the* web of packaging material, a pair of clamping plates atoppositesides of theI base stock in advance of said die wheel and back-up roll and movable toward-and away from each other as well as along the path of the basestock, means reciprocating said plates along the path ofthe base stock in response to rotation of said die wheel,V said plates normally permitting the movement therebetween of the base stock, and means urging' said plates towardeach otherV during the reciprocating movement of said-plates-'inthefdirection opposed to the normal feeding movement of the base stock and whensaid-v active portion of the diefwheel faces away from theV back-up roll soA that said plates clamp thel base stock and pull back the latter an extent suflicient to register the foremosttransfer coating on the base stock withl saidf active portion of the die wheel during a` subsequent revolution of the latter.

4. Transfer labeling apparatus as in claim 3; includingl means associatedwith theplates and adapted to cooperate with one of a series of openingsV in the base stock to detectl a positional relationship between' said plates and the base' stock` in a direction along thebase stock,tthe-means^for urging the platestoward each other being4 adapted to` operate in response to the' detection of saidY positional -relation.

5. Transfer labeling apparatus asin claim 4; wherein said means urging the plates towardl each other includes electro-magneticmeansgan electrical circuit for energizing said electro-magnetic means,-and control means inter'- posedl in said electrical circuit and moving with said platesto scanthe openings of the base stock for cornpleting said circuit` when said plates attainf a predeterminedposition with respectv to thebase stock.

6. Transfer labeling apparatusas in claim 5; wherein said controlA meansl includes contacts in said plates normally insulated from eachother by the ba'se stockto interrupt said electrical circuit and adapted to engage each other through an opening of the base stock *when said plates attain said predetermined position relative to the base Astock.`

7. Transfer labeling apparatus as in clainr 6; further comprising av normally closed switch in said electrical circuit, and means operative in response to rotation of said die wheel toopen said normally closed switch and thereby causeA deenergization of said electro-magnetic means for releasingV the clamping action of said` plates on the base stock when said active` portion ofthe die wheelY faces toward` said back-up roll and' commences the normalfeeding of the -base stock.

8. Transfer' labeling apparatus asin claim 7; wherein saidl means reciprocating saidplates includesf a' cam fixed to rotate with said die wheel, and linkage means conl 18 nected'- tol said plates and following the contours of said cam toi reciprocate rsaid plates in response to rotation of said cam.

9. .Transfer labeling apparatus for use in' connection with base stockincluding a continuous paper carrier havingV` label defining transfer coatings thereon transferable to an advancing web of packaging material by the applicationof heat and pressure; said apparatus comprising al back-up rollhavi-nga-resilient surface, means for guiding the paper carrier and the web along paths that run together on the surface of said back-up roll and then diverge and with the transfer `coatings on the carrier facing the wena-rotary die wheel'having a heated, `sector-shaped active Aportion with the circumferential extent of the latter being equal to the longitudinal extent of each of the transfer coatings alongthe paper carrier, said die wheel beingdisposed so that,- When said active portion faces said back-up roll during each revolution of the die wheel, heat and pressure are applied to the base stock and web on the back-up roll over an area of substantial width and the base stock is advanced a distance equal to the sum of the circumferential extent of said active portion and the widthof said area, lmeans for rotating said die'wheel in synehronism with the advancement of the Web of packaging material, feedregulating means engaging in registration apertures in the base stock in advance of said die wheel and back-up roll and operated in synchronism with the rotation of the die wheel to release the base stock for movement toward' sai'd die wheel andback-up roll through a distance equal to said. circumferential` extent of the active portion only when the latter is advancing the base stoclc,and` yieldable pull-back means engaging the base stock at alocation along the latter betweenV said-feed regulatingV means and said die wheel and `back-up `roll 'and operative to pull backthe base stockbetween said die wheel` and back-up roll adistance equal to said'- widthof the area when said active portion of the die wheel faces away from the base stock and to `yield during advancing of thev base stock by said active portion' of the die wheel for adding the pulled back length of base stock to4 the length of the' latter then released by said feed regulating means.

l0. Transfer labeling apparatus for use in connection withl base 'stoclc including acontinuous paper carrier 'havingalabeldefining'transfer coatings thereon transferable to an advancing web of packaging material by' the' ap'- plic-ationof heatand pressure; said' apparatus comprising a back-up rollhaving aresilient surface, means for guiding the paper carrier and the web along paths that run together on the surface of said back-up' roll and then diverge and with the transfer coatings on the car'- rier facingthe web, a rotary die wheel having a heated, sector-shaped active portionA with the circumferential extent of thelatter vbeing equal to the longitudinal extent of'- each of the transfercoatings along thepaper carrier, said die wheel being disposed so that, when said active portion faces said back-up rol-l during each revolution of the die wheel,V heat and pressure are applied to the base t stock and web' on the back-up roll over an area 'of substantial widthr and the base stock is' advanced a distance equal to the sum ofthe circumferential extent of said active portion and the width Vof saidarea, means for rotating said die wheel in synchronism with the advancement of the web/of packaging material, feed regulating means engaging in registration apertures in the base stock inadvance of said die wheel and back-up roll and op'- era-tedl insynchronism with the rotation of said die wheel to' release the base stock for movement toward said die wheel and back-up roll through a distance equal tov said circumferential extent of the active portion only when the latter faces the base stock and advances the latter, and pull-back means engaging' the base stock andyieldt ably urgingfthe latter to follow a relatively lo'ng path between said feedregulatingV means and saiddie wheel and back-up roll so that, when said Iactive portion of the die wheel advances the base stock, said pull-back means yields to shorten said path between said feed regulating means and said die wheel and back-up roll thereby accommodating the advancement of base stock by the die wheel through a distance greater than the length of base stock then released by said feed regulating means, and so that, when said active portion of the die wheel faces away from the base stock, said pull-back means again urges the base stock to return to said relatively long path and thereby pulls back the base stock between said die wheel and back-up roll.

l1. Transfer labeling apparatus as in claim wherein said feed regulating means includes a rotatable release wheel engaging the base stock and permitting advancement of the latter toward said die wheel and back-up roll only when said release wheel is free to rotate, latch means operative to prevent rotation of said release wheel, and a latch release cam rotatable with said die wheel and releasing said latch means when said active portion of the die wheel faces the base stock for advancing the latter.

12. Transfer labeling apparatus for use in connection with base stock having a paper carrier and label defining transfer coatings thereon transferable by heat and pressure from the carrier to an advancing web of packaging film; said apparatus comprising a back-up roll, a rotary heated die wheel disposed for rolling contact with said back-up roll to apply heat and pressure for transferring label defining coatings from the carrier to the packaging film when the latter and the base stock are fed together between said die wheel and back-up roll, means guiding the paper carrier to follow a straight path tangent to the surface of said back-up roll, means guiding the packaging film to follow a path from said back-up roll that diverges away from said straight path of the paper car rier, and means tensioning the paper carrier following passage of the latter between said die wheel and back-up roll thereby to ensure that the paper carrier follows said straight path after transfer of a label defining coating to the packaging film and that the transferred coating will separate from the paper carrier, said tensioning means including a rotated drum over which the paper carrier runs following passage of the latter between said die wheel and hack-up roll, said drum having a surface with a high coefficient of friction, and yieldable means pressing the paper carrier against said surface of the drum so that, as the latter rotates, the paper carrier will tend to be drawn along therewith.

13. Transfer labeling apparatus for use in connection with base stock having a paper carrier and label defining transfer coatings thereon transferable by heat and pressure from the carrier to an advancing web of packaging film; said apparatus comprising a back-up roll, a rotary heated die wheel disposed for rolling contact with said back-up roll to apply heat and pressure for transferring label defining coatings from the carrier to the packaging film when the latter and the `base stock are fed together between said die wheel and back-up roll, means guiding the paper carrier to follow a straight path tangent to the surface of said back-up roll, means guiding the packaging film to follow a path from said back-up roll that diverges away from said straight path of the paper carrier thereby to separate the label defining coatings from the paper carrier after the transfer of such coatings to the packaging film by said heated die wheel, and means for rotating said die wheel at substantially the same surface speed as that of the advancing packaging film and including a driven member, a shaft carrying said die wheel, a ratchet wheel rotatable independently of said driven member and shaft, friction clutch-means for transmitting the rotation of said driven member to said ratchet wheel and a pawl engaging said ratchet wheel and rotatable with said shaft to drive the latter in response to rotation of said ratchet wheel so that, in the event that the actual surface speed of said die wheel departs from the surface speed of the film during the transfer' of a coating to the latter, said friction clutch means and said ratchet wheel and pawl permit rotation of said shaft and die wheel relative to said driven member to avoid the occurrence of shearing stresses between the transfer coating and packaging film.

14. Transfer labeling apparatus for use in connection with base stock having label defining transfer coatings on a paper carrier and transferable from the latter to a moving surface by the application of heat and pressure; said apparatus comprising a rotary, heated die wheel disposed to effect rolling contact With the base stock against the moving surface, a rotatable shaft carrying said die wheel, a clutch including a continuously rotated driving member coaxially disposed relative to said shaft, a driven member spaced axially from said driving member and movable axially and rotatably relative to the latter and friction clutch discs interposed between said driving and driven members and effective to transmit the rotation of said driving member to said driven member when said discs are axially compacted by movement of said driven member toward said driving member, a ratchet wheel rotatable with said driven member, a pawl engaging said ratchet wheel, means mounting said pawl on said shaft so that said ratchet wheel and pawl operate to transmit the rotation of said driven member to said shaft, and control means for moving said driven member toward and away from said driving member to respectively engage and disengage said clutch so that, when said clutch is engaged, slipping in said clutch and relative movement of said ratchet wheel and pawl permit accommodation of the surface speed of said die wheel to the speed of the moving surface to which transfer coatings are to be applied thereby avoiding the occurrence of shearing stresses during the transfer of a label defining coating to the moving surface.

l5. Transfer labeling apparatus as in claim 14; wherein said control means includes a pivoted yoke member carrying rollers engaging said driven member to axially shift the latter in response to rocking of the yoke member, a follower on said yoke member, a lineraly movable cam member engaged by said follower, means yieldably urging said cam member in the direction permitting disengagement of said clutch by the yoke member, electromagnetic operating means, connecting means between said operating means and cam member and including a tension spring so that the latter is tensioned by energization of said electro-magnetic operating means to move said cam member in the direction for engaging said clutch whereby said operating means can act instantaneously to avoid overheating thereof, and means for controlling the energization of said electro-magnetic operating means.

16. Apparatus for heat transfer of labels to a web from base stock carrying the labels and having registration apertures correlated to the labels, the apparatus comprising a rotary die wheel having a raised heated segment, a resilient back-up roll cooperating with the die wheel, a sprocket engageable with the registration apertures of the base stock in advance of the die wheel, means positively limiting the rotation of the sprocket to a predetermined amount per cycle of rotation of the die wheel, pull-back means acting on the base stock between the sprocket and the die wheel for yieldingly deflecting the base stock thereby to pull back yieldingly on the base stock, and stop means limiting such pulling back, thereby to establish a definite relation between each label and the die wheel notwithstanding resiliency of the backup roll.

17. Apparatus for heat transfer of labels to a web from base stock carrying the labels and having registration apertures correlated to the labels, the apparatus comprising a rotary die wheel having a raised heated segment, a resilient back-up roll cooperating with the die wheel, a sprocket engageable with the registration apertures of the base stock in advance of the die wheel, latch means for limiting the rotation of the sprocket wheel,

means for releasing the latch in timed relation to the rotation of the die wheel, pull-back means acting on the base stock between the sprocket and the die wheel for yieldingly deflecting the base stock thereby to pull back yieldingly on the base stock, and stop means limiting such pulling back, thereby to establish a definite relation between each label and the die wheel notwithv standing resiliency of the back-up roll.

18. Apparatus for heat transfer of labels to a web from -base stock carrying the labels and having registration apertures correlated to the labels, the apparatus comprising a rotary die wheel having a raised heated segment, a resilient back-up roll cooperating with the die wheel, means beyond the die wheel for tensioning the base stock to separate it from the label applied to the web, a sprocket engageable with the registration apertures of the base stock in advance of the die wheel, means positively limiting the rotation of the sprocket to a predetermined amount per cycle of rotation of the die wheel, pull-backmeans acting on the base stock between the sprocket and the die wheel for yieldingly deecting the base stock thereby to pull back yieldingly on the base stock, and stop means engageable with the pull-back means for limiting such pulling back, said pull-back means being sufficiently forceful, when not stopped by the stop means, to overcome the forward pull of said tensioning means, thereby to establish `a definite relation between each label and the die wheel notwithstanding resiliency of the back-up roll.

19. Apparatus for applying label dening transfer coatings from a continuous paper carrier to a moving surface, the apparatus including a rotary die wheel having a radially enlarged portion adapted to press the carrier against the moving surface with rolling contact, a sprocket wheel engageable with the carrier in advance of the die wheel for governing the feed of the carrier stock, yieldable pull-back means engaging the carrier stock between the sprocket wheel and the die wheel, latch means for latching the sprocket wheel in an indexed position and means operating in timed relation to the rotary die wheel for releasing the latch means to permit rotation of the sprocket wheel.

20. Apparatus for applying label defining transfer coatings from a continuous base stock to a moving film, the apparatus including a back-up roll, a rotary die Wheel having a radially enlarged active portion adapted to press the base stock and film against the back-up roll, and feed regulating means including a rotatable release wheel engaging the base stock and permitting advancement of the latter toward said die wheel and back-up roll only when said release wheel is free to rotate, latch means operative to prevent rotation of said release wheel, and a latch release cam rotatable with said die wheel and releasing said latch means when said active portion of the die wheel faces the base stock for advancing the latter.

21. Transfer labeling apparatus as in claim 20; wherein said release wheel has pins projecting radially there-l from and receivable in corresponding cut-outs in the base stock to prevent movement of the latter relative to the surface of said release wheel engaged by' the base stock.

22. Transfer labeling apparatus as in claim 20; wherein said latch means includes a ratchet Wheel having spaced peripheral teeth and being rotatable with said release wheel, and a latch lever operative to engage with the teeth of said ratchet wheel, said teeth of the ratchet wheel being spaced apart a distance sufficient to permit the release of a length of the base stock by said release wheel equal to the circumferential eXtent of the active portion of the die wheel when said ratchet wheel turns through the angular spacing -between adjacent teeth on its periphery; and wherein said latch release cam acts on said latch lever to move the latter out of engagement with the periphery of said ratchet wheel when said active portion of the die wheel initially contacts the base stock and to return said latch lever to engagement with the periphery of the ratchet wheel before said active portion moves out of contact with the base stock so that rotation of the release wheel will be halted when a tooth of said ratchet wheel comes against said latch lever.

23. Transfer labeling apparatus for use in connection with base stock having a paper carrier and label dening transfer coatings thereon transferable by heat and pressure to a moving surface, said apparatus including a die wheel having a raised heated segment rotatable in contact with the moving surface, driving means tending to drive the die wheel at substantially the same surface speed as that of the moving surface, and a one-way driving connection between the driving means and die wheel permitting the die wheel to advance with respect to the driving means in the event the speed of the moving surface exceeds the speed imparted to the die wheel lby the driving means.

24. Transfer labeling apparatus as claimed in claim 23 in which the oneway driving connection comprises a pawl and ratchet.

References Cited in the le of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,086,402 Richardson Feb. 10, 1914 1,939,717 Morse Dec. 19, 1933 2,218,798 Muller Oct. 22, 1940 2,501,539 Ruth Mar. 21, 1950 2,516,487 Schlicksupp July 25, 1950 2,590,239 Elsman Mar. 25, 1952 FOREIGN PATENTS 368,405 Great Britain Mar. 10, 1932

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1086402 *Feb 11, 1911Feb 10, 1914Charles G RichardsonDevice for applying transfer-stamps.
US1939717 *Jun 16, 1930Dec 19, 1933Multigraph CoPaper feeding mechanism
US2218798 *May 4, 1939Oct 22, 1940Peerless Roll Leaf Co IncStamping press for rotatable articles
US2501539 *Apr 26, 1948Mar 21, 1950Ruth James AApparatus for applying decalcomanias to hosiery
US2516487 *Feb 20, 1947Jul 25, 1950Schlicksupp Theodore FMethod and apparatus for labeling fabrics
US2590239 *Dec 30, 1948Mar 25, 1952Elsman James LMethod and apparatus for printing and applying labels to wrapping paper
GB368405A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3113904 *Sep 8, 1960Dec 10, 1963Dennison Mfg CoTransfer labeling machine
US8215943Jun 14, 2006Jul 10, 2012Avery Dennison CorporationHeat-transfer label assembly and apparatus for applying heat-transfer labels
US9132931Jul 9, 2012Sep 15, 2015Avery Dennison CorporationHeat-transfer label assembly and apparatus for applying heat-transfer labels
US20070281137 *Jun 14, 2006Dec 6, 2007Kuolih TsaiHeat-transfer label assembly and apparatus for applying heat-transfer labels
DE1262872B *Jun 3, 1964Mar 7, 1968Tetra Pak AbVorrichtung zum Anbringen von Etiketten oder Schlitz- bzw. Lochverschlussplaettchen in Abstaenden auf einer Materialbahn
DE1284890B *Aug 7, 1961Dec 5, 1968Bemis Co IncEinrichtung zum Anbringen eines Etiketts
WO2007142970A1 *May 30, 2007Dec 13, 2007Avery Dennison CorporationHeat-transfer label assembly and apparatus for applying heat-transfer labels
WO2010057518A1 *Nov 18, 2008May 27, 2010Atc All Thin Convert AgMethod and system for generating laminates and laminate intermediate product
Classifications
U.S. Classification156/361, 156/541, 156/DIG.210
International ClassificationB65C9/18, B65C9/00, B65C9/24, B65C9/08
Cooperative ClassificationB65C9/24, B65C9/1873
European ClassificationB65C9/18B2B, B65C9/24