US 2896517 A
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July 28, 1959 R. A. LABOMBARDE 2,896,517
MULTI-molan FOLDING GUIDE Filed Jan. l2. 1956 I 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 31 34 73 22 f 7 f 73 20 3 61 9B IN1/EN TOR. RAYMON A. LAB OMBARDE 7:3 l la ,1, rPzn/ama ATTORNEYS July 28, 1959 R. A. LABOMBARDE 2,896,517
MULTI-ncsu FOLDING GUIDE Filed Jan. 12. 195e 2 sheets-sheet 2 1 INVENToR. F1196. RAYMOND .4.LAB0MMRDE aa/wa44 r .PW
A TTORNE Y 15' 2,896,517 Patented July 28, 1959 ice MULTI-FACED FLDING GUIDE Raymond A. Lahombarde, Nashua, N.H. Application January 12, 1956, Serial No. 558,726
Claims. (Cl. 93--49) This invention relates to an improved folding guide, or inside former, for use in machines for folding paper boxes.
ln the paper box folding art, it has long been customary to advance flat box blanks individually and successively along the paper line of a folding machine while various necessary folds are accomplished on the blanks to produce set-up or collapsed boxes. Especially in the co1- lapsed box field, the blanks usually used have been provided with major wall, top or bottom flaps or panels and minor attachment tabs usually articulated thereto on oblique lines of articulation. Usually the obliquely articulated tabs are folded in one direction while the flaps or panels, to which they are hinged, are folded in the opposite direction. The problem is thus presented of successfully maintaining an overfolded tab in overfolded position while the element to which it is hinged is itself being overfolded, and this problem becomes especially acute when the blanks travel at high speed, whether timed or untimed.
For example in U.S. Patent No. 2,112,121 to Sidebotham granted March 22, 1938, a stationary elongated guide, having a helical face is provided on one side of an advancing blank ilap to hold down the overfolded tabs thereon while a flexible belt on the other side of the llap overfolds the same. A somewhat similar guide is provided in U.S. Patent No. 2,197,089 to Anderson issued April 16, 1940, wherein a stationary elongated folding guide includes a helical face for holding down already overfolded tabs on a flap being overloaded and also includes a lower edge extending along the line of flap fold to insure accurate folding thereon. ln U.S. Patent No. 2,125,147 to Bergstein granted July 26, 1938, a folding guide in the shape of an elongated rod of small diameter is shown for holding down overfolded tabs on a flap being overfolded.
Usually at least one of the tabs to be held down by Y such folding guides has been coated with adhesive since the purpose of the tab is to collapsibly attach the box together and the adhesive must be applied before final overfolding of the flaps. Among the disadvantages of the flat `bar type of folding guide disclosed in the above patents is the fact that the large area of contact thereof either wipes olf any applied adhesive or permits adhesive to be applied only in the small areas of the flaps or tabs not contacted by the guide. In addition the milling of a flat bar into the desired helical face is a time consuming and expensive task as is the shaping of a rod such as taught by the above Bergstein patent `into the` desired helical configuration.
lt is the principal object of this invention to provide a multi-faced, multi-purposed, folding guide capable of not only holding down a first overfolded ,glue tab on the out* side of a longitudinally extending fold line while serving as a fold former on `the inside of the foldline, but also holding down a second overfolded tab or flap on the inside of the fold line.
Another object of the invention is to provide such a` 2 multi-purpose folding guide wherein the helical face holding down the adhesive tab on the outside of the fold line has an unusually narrow tab contacting face to avoid wiping olf the adhesive and is yet of sufficient rigidity to avoid vibration or bending.
Still another object of the invention is to provide a thin walled inverted channel shaped folding guide for holding down outside overfolded tabs on a blank and a spring metal, thin, flat guide for holding down inside overfolded tabs on a blank, the flat guide being fixed along one edge of the channel guide to also serve as a fold forming guide.
A still further objectof the invention is to provide an elongated folding guide which utilizes at least three different portions :for guiding folds of a blank, which is rigid enough to be supported only at one end and yet is of thin material to reduce weight, reduce frictional Contact with the blank and reduce interference with adhesive coatings on the blank.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the claims, the description of the drawings and from the drawings in which- Fig. l is a fragmentary perspective View of that portion of a typical box folding machine in which an outer tiap is folded inwardly on a longitudinally extending fold line as a typical blank advances at high speed along the paper line of the machine through the folding Zone for the outer aps.
Fig. 2 is a perspective view showing the method step of making a helical face on a semi-circular channeled member by a longitudinally extending cut.
Fig. 2A is a perspective View of showing the method step of aiiixing a flat, straight bar guide onto the straight edge of the helically cut guide member.
Fig. 3 is a fragmentary end view in section on line 3--3 of Fig. l showing the initial stages of the folds in which each multi-purpose guide of this invention is holding down two tabs, or flaps, while serving as horizontal straight edges along the line of flap fold.
Fig. 4 is a view similar to Fig. 3, Vbut insertion on line @-4 of Fig. 1 showing a later stage in the fold.
Fig. 5 is a View similar to Fig. 3, but in :section on line 5 5 of Fig. l and showing a still later stage in the fold, and
Fig. 6 is a view similar to Fig. 3, but in section on line 6 6 of Fig. l and showing the final stage of the fold.
As shown in the drawings, 20 is a portion of the frame of a typical box folding machine of the type in which flat box blanks are advanced horizontally along a paper line 21 either by the lugs of chains in timed machines, or by the friction of belts such as 22 and 23 in untimed machines. Untimed machines, such as that illustrated, do
not require registration of the blanks and the blanks may therefore flow forwardly individually and successively at very high speed in the direction of the arrows, all in a well known manner forming no part of this invention. In the folding zone of the machine illustrated, outer flaps 24 and 25 are to be overfolded inwardly toward the centrev by pulleys such as at 38 in the usual manner. Each belt such as 36 includes `an upper stretch such as 39 which is outside the Vadjacent fold line 27 and `is helically twisted to overfold an outer flap such as 24 as the ilap and ,l belt advance in the direction of travel of the blanks. The
naps 2,4 and 25 are in the flat plane of themain body of a blank 26 when they arriveV at the folder belts 36 and 39. However, the leading Viiaps and tabs of blank 26 hay@ already been folded-bypreeedng foldinaoperations IGitane., machine anda layer QtadhesiveV has already been appliedto` such tabs or portions-of they flaps as are designedto connect the-blank intoa collapsed box.
For clarity and conveniencey in this, application, all diagonally yarticulated elements of thel blank such as at 42I and 43 are termed attachment, ,glue or adhesive tabs. InI addition, all other articulated elements of the blank, to. which such diagonally Varticulated `tabs are intended to be adhered are also termed attachmennglue or adhes'ive tabs. Thewalls or panels ofthe blankto Which such tabs are hingedly connected are ,termedgxiiaps herein todistinguish the samefrom the attachment tabs. Thus itl will be noted that inthe particular balanletv shown, theattaehmenttabsare designated. 452, 43, 44a-nd 45.and the iiaps to whiehthey are articulated are designated; 24., 4.6, 47 and 4 8, Tabs 44 and 45.and. aps. 46and 47 areall hingedly connected; to Yblank '2 6., along a laterally extending fold line 50 which subsequently deiines` the bottom line of ,the collapsed box. The other laterally extending fold line 5 1 subsequently` defines the top line of the collapsed box, the flaps articulatedgat line 51 being cover, o losure, 'or sealing aps. Theglue tab-52 is used to complete the box whenl the blank has been folded into a collapsed tubeby folding belts 36 and137.
As outer flap 2,4 is overfoldedlon fold. line 27. while advancing along paper line -21 athigh speedfit is necessary to retain outer tab 44 in overfolded position and to retain inner tab 42 and inner flap 46. in overfolded position to prevent fraturing or crushing the same. Similarly as outer flap is overfolded-on fold linelwhile advancing along paper line 2 1 at high speedl it is necessary to retain outer ,tab 43 and outer flap 48 in loverfolded position and to retain inner tab 45 in.overfolded position. To assure the accurate foldingof the flaps24 and 25 Vontheir fold lines Vit'isalso desirable to provide a straight.r edge along the inside lof the fold line which prevents the. ap from lifting the rest of-theblank and failing to fold or misfolding.
The improved multifaced folding guide of this invention is designed to accomplish all` of the above purposes with a single unitary guideY for each such fold. The folding guides 53 and 54 are substantially identical except that they are reversed to each other. Each guide 53`isformed from a channel shaped, elongated, straight member V55 of self supportingmaterial such as shown in Fig.V 2. Preferably the Walls ofthe member 55 are thin with rigldity being secured by the arcuate, arched shape thereof andthe side edges at 56 and 57 are both initially straight andflat. The rstr step in the methodof making the .guide of this invention is the dividing of the member 55,1nto two sections by a longitudinally extending helical line of division which may extend from end toend thereof orI fromone end to a point further advanced therealong. Preferably thisstep is accomplished by cutting with a saw 5 8 and it should be noted thatthis operation is more simple, rapid and economical than milling a helical surface in a long bar or bending a rodV into the correct hellcalshape. Eachv member 5S thus `includes its-original straight flat edge face such as 56 andthenewly formed helical, but flat, edge face 59. A portionof originaledge 5771s preferably retained as` at 61 to give increased'length to the resultingguide as shown inV Fig. 1. Thus the non ealporl'ltlilonl serves to hold an outer iiap down and a lse W e it advances from a` reced l i t0 .the vfold belts 36 and y37. `p mg operation up The Vnext step Qinthe method of making the guide of hlS tUlVSIltlonis 4the atiixingof astraight, flat strip or bar zalongthe,.uncut, or non helical, Vstraight'edge face 56 of'thltmbet 55. The stepis accomplished preferably by welding the edge 56.alongthe longitudinal centre line ofthe topface ofsbarz` torposition the, bar 52A in a radial plane relative to the semi-circular member 55 with one edge 64 of the bar...extending along the imaginary longitudinal centre line 65 around which the member 55 outlines a semi-circle. Preferably the bar 62 is of thin, broad blue spring metal in order that it may yield resiliently if a blank jam occurs or if a blank must be forcibly removed from thereunder.
The folding guides 53 and 54, each formed by a member 55 fixed-to a bar 62, are at least co-extensive with the longitudinal path of folding defined by the twisted folder belts 36 and 37 and each is preferably additionally supported by a co,-extensive angle iron such as 67 or 68 welded or otherwise affixed thereto. The guides 53 and 54, through the angle irons 67 and 68, are supported from above the paper line by brackets such as 70 and 71v V in advance of the folding Zone. Each bracket such as 7@ includes a set screw 72 to permit slight longitudinal shifting. of the guidesand includes a portiony 73 sleeved aroundsquare shaft 34.*whereby it maybe move-dzlaterally by thrust screws such as 74.
The Vfolding guides 53and 5'4fare usually provided in a largesizeand asmall size, each sizeaccommodatinga range of various sized blanks. As bestshown in Figs. 3;-16 the operation of'thedevice is the same for flaps andtabs of various dimensions because they length of the folding zone is constant for all blanks and the helical path of the overfolded.` outer apscorresponds tothefhelicalface of the guide regardless of the length of: the flap.
Theoperation of the device'is best shown in Figsl 3-6 wherein it will beseen that Fig.. 3: shows a blank 26 in thefflat condition in which it enters the lfolding zone. The imaginary longitudinal centre line of the circle of which themembers 55 are semi-circles'lies along the path of the respective longitudinally extending fold 'lines Z7 andZS andthe channelmembersare invertedas shownto straddle the fold line. Thiscauses the non helicallycut lportion 6ft of the edge 56 to hold down aiongitudinally extending line of the upper. face of. the tab 44 without interfering with'adhesive on the remainder of the upperface thereof. There is no friction between the member S5 and the portion of the upper face of tab 4Z between the edges 6l or 59 and the fold line Z7 and no adhesive wiping action occurs in this area ofthe tab. The iat underface 7S ofthe flat strip or har62 ispositioned to hold down the inner tab 42 and the inner` flap 46` as:well asthe wall .'76 of blank 26 .to whiclrflap 46'is articulated. The'holddown action ofhar 69; extends laterally out to the outer, straightedge 64. of the bary which is as close aspracticable-to thepath of the fold line Z7 along paper line 21. The position and function oflguide 54- is identical butreversedand'it accomplishes the same three functions on its side-of the path oftheblanks.
In Fig. 4 the folding belts 36 and 37 have commenced to overfold iiaps 24 and 25 inwardly toward the centre of the blank'as'theV blank-advances atl high.v speed.; The straight edge 64 is 'performing its function of assuring that Vthe fold of the outer "flaps takes place on the Ycorrect fold lineV 27 or 2,8 while Yunderface 75 continues to hold the body of the blank and its overfolded elcments down on the paper line. 4 Helical face 5 9 continues to hold tab 44 flatwise against outer flap lZ4 while the helical face 59'of guide 54.holds both tab 43r and flap 48 down von flap 25.
Fig. 5 shows ,flaps 24 and 2S at the time theyhave lbent or Vfolded along the correct fold lines 27 and Z8 It is at this point in` pass out of the folding zone in a manner well known in the trade.
1. A unitary, multiple, folding guide for controlling the tabs and aps of a plurality of box blanks advancing individually and successively along a path through the flap folding zone of a folding machine, said guide comprising an elongated body of self supporting material coextensive in length with said folding zone, said body having a flat, straight, strip extending the full length of one side thereof with a smooth underface and at least one straight edge and said body having an `arched strip with a straight edge face affixed centrally of the upper face of said flat stripy and a helical edge face commencing on the opposite side of the longitudinal axis of said body from the straight edge face thereof, at one end, but crossing over said longitudinal axis to merge with said straight edge face at the other end of said body and means for supporting said guide above the path of said blanks with said arched strip straddling the longitudinal path of the fold line of the flap being overfolded in said zone, the straight edge of said fiat strip just inside said path and the underface of said at strip just above the path of the main body of said blanks.
2. A combination as specied in claim 1 wherein said flat strip is of spring metal and adapted to yield for the removal of a blank jammed thereunder.
3. A combination as specified in claim 1 wherein said arched strip is formed of thin walled material whereby the helical edge face thereof is narrow and engages only a narrow strip of an adhesively coated tab being guided thereby.
4. A combination as specified in claim 1 wherein said arched strip is of semi-circular configuration at one end thereof and of parti-circular configuration in the remainder thereof.
5. A combination as specified in claim 1 wherein said guide supporting means includes threaded mechanism for moving said guide longitudinally and laterally relative to the path of said blanks through the folding zone of said machine.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,982,404 stoner Nov. 27, 1934 2,088,120 Smith July 27, 1937 2,112,121 Sidebotham Mar. 22, 1938 2,241,678 Sidebotham May 13, 1941 2,296,896 Bergstein Sept. 25, 1942 FOREIGN PATENTS 514,312 Germany Dec. 11, 1930