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Publication numberUS3142370 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 28, 1964
Filing dateApr 16, 1962
Priority dateApr 16, 1962
Publication numberUS 3142370 A, US 3142370A, US-A-3142370, US3142370 A, US3142370A
InventorsOtten Fred J
Original AssigneeOtten Fred J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Automatic coin collector
US 3142370 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

July 28, 1964 v .LOTTEN v 1 'I 3,142,370- v AUTOMATIC COIN COLLECTORA Filed April 1e, 1962 v4 Sheets-sheet 1 IN VEN TOR.

July-28,1964 F.J.'OTTEN l 3,142,370

- y AUTOMATIC COIN COLLECTOR 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 )7' 14 Filed April le, 1962 37 49 FRED J. OTTEN y INVENTOR.

BY g arl R0 AGENT July 2s, 1964 F. ,11. oT'rl-:N- AUTOMATIC com `COLLECTOR 4 sheets-sheet 5 Filed April 16,'1962 Fles FRED J. OTTEN INVENT OR.

Karl 9 7b AGENT July 28, 1964 F, J, QTTEN I I 3,142,370

.AUTOMATIC COIN COLLECTOR Filed April 1e, 1962 4 sheets-sheet 4,

' 71 L1125I J 2l 1:5 l .l 1:1 l l 1:101

74 l 70d l l 55d 58C 6813 55u` Il? 7367d 575571 67u 'Y 75 63 55d 55C 551:1 65(1 1551 v 57 \55b 53 11- y/ FRED J. OTTEN INVENTOR.

` BY I Ml oss AGENT y, 3,142,370 Ice Patented July 28, 1964 3,142,370 AUTMATIC G01N CGLLECTR Fred l. Otten, 86 Jefferson St., Inwood, NSY. Filed Apr. 16, 1962, Ser. No. 187,740 6 Claims. (Cl. 194-9) My present invention relates to an automatic coin-collecting device of the type used, for example, at toll gates to receive a predetermined amount of money tossed into a receptacle from a passing vehicle.

Collecting devices of this type must be able to count rapidly a variety of coin denominations in order to give a proceed or toll paid signal as soon as the prescribed amount has been accumulated. With a 25d' toll, for example, correct payment may be effected with a single quarter, two dimes and a nickel, three nickels and one dime, five nickels, twenty-five pennies, or pennies in combination with one or more dimes and/or nickels. The general object of this invention, therefore, is to provide a high-speed machine of this type adapted to compute the total value of deposited coins in a rapid and dependable manner.

Since coins thrown from moving vehicles arrive at different speeds and various angles, and since the payor may deposit any number of coins simultaneously, it becomes important to insure proper handling of these coins under a large variety of conditions. Accordingly, it is a more particular object of my invention to provide reliable means for individually channeling coins of various denominations to their destination, i.e. an evaluating and counting assembly, preferably in combination with means for relieving any jam that may result from an unfortunate throw or from the use of bent or otherwise defective coins or foreign objects.

The evaluating and counting process can be accelerated if coins of a particular denomination, differing from all others by their distinctive dimensions, are sorted out at an early stage for channeling to a separate counter. Thus, another object of my present invention is to provide improved means for separating a particular type of coin from al1 others that are receivable by the collecting device.

A feature of this invention resides in the provision of a guide path dimensioned to accommodate coins up to a given maximum diameter, in combination with bypass means in the form of two ramps straddling the guide path and ascending on opposite sides thereof to pick up coins of one or more denominations exceeding that maximum diameter, the guide path and the ramps terminating at respective outlets for the discharge of the two types of coins to individual counters therefor. 1f the ramps are dimensioned to receive only the largest coins (e.g. quarters), all the other denominations (dimes, nickels, pennies) will remain on the guide path whose outlet, therefore, must be equipped with a discriminator to distinguish among the different sizes thereof. This discriminator, according to another feature of my invention, includes an oscillating transport arm which sweeps the coins from the guide-path outlet to a discharge path past a testing member adapted to be deflected to a different extent by the several coin types. The testing member, in turn, actuates contacts of a counting mechanism to evaluate and add up the coins so tested.

In spite of all precautions it can happen, particularly in the presence of badly deformed coins, that the channel to one or the other counter is blocked and that, therefore, the driver of a vehicle is not given clearance to proceed but, instead, an alarm is sounded, notwithstanding proper payment having been made, as soon as the vehicle passes a treadle or other (eg. photoelectric) switching device disposed beyond the collecting unit. The probability of malfunction, rather than insufficient payment, is increased if successive actuations of the roadway switch by different vehicles result in alarm indications. A further object of this invention, therefore, is to provide means for automatically clearing at least the coin channel leading to the testing member, preferably in response to recurrent alarm conditions, and concurrently therewith cancelling the alarm. This object is realized, pursuant to still another feature of the instant invention, by the provision of a tiltable support for the coins to be tested, in combination With an electrical release device (e.g. a solenoid) operable by the alarm circuit to tilt the support into a coin-discharging position upon the occurrence of the desired number of consecutive alarms.

The above and other objects, features and advantages of my invention will become more fully apparent from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment, reference being made to the accompanying drawing in which:

FIG. l is a perspective view of a toll gate equipped with a coin collector according to the invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged side-elevational View (parts broken away) of the coin collector shown in FIG. l;

FIG. 3 is a partly sectional rear-elevational View of the collector taken substantially on the line III-III of FIG. 2.;

FIGS. 4 and 5 are detail views taken on the lines lV-lV and V-V, respectively, of FIG. 2; and

FIG. 6 is a circuit diagram relating to the collector of FIGS. 2-5.

In FIG. 1 there is shown a toll gate including an attendants cabin 1u, a coin collector 11 according to the invention in front of this cabin, a treadle 12 in the roadway beyond the collector, and a signal post 13 further along the vehicular lane served by the collector. Post 13 carries the usual signal lamps 13 (red) and 13 (green).

Reference will now be made to FIGS. 2 and 3 for a description of the principal elements of the collector 11. A basket 14, positioned at a convenient elevation alongside the roadway, has a sloping bottom forming part of a shelf 15 and is further provided with a rear partition 16 oscillatably supported, with the aid of rubber bumpers 17, on side wings 17', 17" of the basket. A series of conical projections 18 of triangular cross-section are fastened by screws 19 to the partition 16 and help direct oncoming coins toward the bottom of the basket, this function being facilitated by a vibrator 20 which acts upon the partition 16 and is energized from a suitable power source via a cable 21. Vibrator 20 is mounted on a bracket 22, secured to the right-hand side wall 14" of basket 14, and co-operates with a ferromagnetic armature plate 23 on partition 16 which is alternately attracted and released by the magnetic core of the vibrator. A similar vibrator 24, connected to the power supply by a cable 25, coacts with an armature plate 26 on a movable extension 27a of a ledge 27 which has a tapering portion 27h spaced from extension 27a by a slight clearance; this ledge and an oppositely positioned companion ledge 28, having a tapering extension 28b which angularly adjoins the extension 28a, rise from the sloping shelf 15 to form therewith a chute with a funnel-shaped entrance and a meandering neck defined by the ledge portions 27a, 28a. Extension 27a is pivotally secured to bottom 15 by a pin 29, traversing a block 30 rigid with that portion having the plate 26 secured thereto, and is resiliently biased relatively to ledge 27, 27h by a spring finger 31 bearing on that ledge. It Will be noted that partition 16 has its lower edge formed with a cutout 16' through which coins may enter the guide path defined by the chute 15, 27, 28, the height of this cutout being just sufficient to clear a single coin although it is possible for two or more coins to pass side by side into the funnel-shaped chute entrance. The meandering neck of the guide path insures that these coins, too, will fall in line behind one another before passing the stretch of the guide path flanked by ledge portions 27h, 28h.

For purposes of the followingy description it will be assumed that the largest coin to be received by the apparatus is a quarter. Thus, the width of the guide path in the region of its neck., i.e. between portions 27b and 2811, is just slightly larger than the diameter of a quarter whereby this coin as well as smaller ones, gently nudged by the vibratory chute wall 27a, will be free to slide down the inclined shelf toward the length of path extending between the ledges 27 and 28. At this point the guide path splits as two ramps 32', 32 rise from the shelf 15 alongside the ledges 27, 28; as will be noted from FIG. 2, the plane of the ramps slopes downwardly in the same sense as the shelf 15, though at a smaller angle of inclination. The relative spacing of ramps 32', 32" just exceeds the diameter of the second-largest coin to be processed, i.e. a nickel, whereby the quarters are elevated from shelf 15 along the ramps whereas all other denominations continue on their original path between the ramps until they arrive at a port 33 formed by a vertical tube 34. The lower end of tube 34 terminates just above a table 35, the latter being pivoted at 36', 36" to a stationary frame 37 rigid with tube 34 so as to be swingable about a horizontal axis; frame 37 is formed with three upstanding ribs 37a, 37b, 37C of which the latter two, together with tube 34, support the shelf 15. Table is normally held in its level position by a solenoid 38 secured to the rib 37e with the aid of a strap 39.

The clearance between the underside of frame 37, hence the lower end of tube 34, and the coin-supporting upper surface of table 35 is just slightly greater than the thickness of the heaviest coin to be received by tube 34, i.e. a nickel; a sectoral transport arm 40, of similar thickness, is oscillatably disposed in that clearance by being swingable about a pin 41 rising from a table 35 at a location offset from frame 37 which overlies only a short part of the arm at the arc of the sector. This arcuate edge is formed with a notch 42 which registers with the bore of tube 34 (and therefore the port 33) in the position of FIG. 4 into which it is urged, against the force of a spring 43, by a cam 44 bearing upon a roller 45 which is carried by the exposed part of the arm. Cam 44 is borne by a shaft 46 which is journalled in the table 35 and carries at its lower end a worm gear 47 meshing with a worm 48, the latter in turn being driven by a motor 49 secured to the underside of the table. An aperture 50 in table 35 registers with the notch 42 when the arm 40 is swung by the spring 43 into its alternate limiting position upon a rotation of cam 44 through half a turn from the position illustrated in FIG. 4.

A test finger 51 is mounted, in the plane of arm 40, on a shaft 52 which is journaled in table 35 and carries on its lower end a wiper arm 53, the latter being biased by a spring 54 into a position in which the finger 51 abuts the arcuate edge of arm 40 while a contact 53 on arm 53 is spaced from a set of fixed bank contacts 55a, 55b, 55C on a sectoral carrier 56 secured to table 35. Another contact arm 57, overhanging the frame 37 to which it is fastened, lies in the path of a timing contact 58 on sectoral arm 40 so as to be engageable thereby just before this arm reaches its alternate limiting position, i.e. just prior to the alignment of notch 42 with outlet 50. Contacts 55a, 55b, 55C, forming part of a sizing and counting circuit more fullydescribed hereinafter with reference to FIG. 6, are so positioned as to be engaged by contact 53 at exactly the instant when contacts 57 and 58 make, in response to displacement of test finger 51 by a small-size coin (dime), a medium-size coin (penny) or a large-size coin (nickel) respectively entrained by the formation 42 from tube 34 to outlet 50.

Any quarter riding down the ramps 32', 32" will be shunted past the port 33 underneath a set of spring fingers 59 which prevent it from leaving its guide path as it passes a countingcam 60 overhanging the ramp 32'. Cam 60 is pivoted in a recess of ledge 27 on a pin 61 carrying a roller 62 which closes a pair of sensing contacts 63 when the cam is urged outwardly by the passing of a coin. The latter then strikes the rib 37a of frame 37 and tumbles into an outlet 37' aligned with a hole 35 in table 35, this hole as well as the outlet 50 for the lower-valued coins leading to a coin repository not shown.

The operation of the system shown in FIGS. 1-5 will now be described with reference to the circuit arrange ment illustrated in FIG. 6.

The sizing circuit controlled by the sector 40, which includes the wiper contact 53 and the bank contacts 55a, 55b and 55C, further comprises three stepping magnets 65a, 6511, 65C respectively energizable from a source of electric current, here shown as a battery 66, over individual paths each including the timing contacts 57, 58 in series with the associated bank contacts 5511---55c` and contact 53. Each of magnets 65a-65c attracts a pawl 67a, 67b, 67C which steps an associated ratchet 68a, 68h, 68e. A similar ratchet 68d is stepped by a pawl 67d upon the energization of an associated magnet 65d via the contacts 63 which are operated by the quarter-sensing cam 60 of FIGS. 2 and 3. A further ratchet 69 is coupled with ratchets 68a, 68h, 68e and 68d by way of respective transmissions 70a, 7Gb, 70C, 70d, indicated diagrammatically, which translate any one-step advance of the associated counting ratchets d8a-68d into as many steps of totalizer ratchet 69 as is indicated by their respective transmission ratios. Thus, transmission 70a has a ratio of 1:10 to advance the ratchet 69 by ten steps whenever ratchet 68a is stepped once in response to the position of a dime (arm 53 on contact 55a); transmissions 70b 70o and 70d have ratios of 1:1, 1:5 and 1:25 in accordance with the respective coins (pennies, nickels and quarters) they represent. The connection between these transmissions and ratchet 69, indicated diagrammatically at 71, causes ratchet 69 to move through as many steps as correspond to the cumulative value of the coins successively tested by sensing finger 51 and/or cam 60; this connection may include a differential 72 designed to make the inputs from both sensing circuits 63, 65d and 53', 55u-55C, 65a-65c, 57, 58 independently effective in the event that tolls higher than 25 e are to be collected.

The totalizer ratchet 69 has a stud 73 which is urged by a spring 74 into contact with a fixed stop 75 defining a starting position; the same stud closes a pair of contacts 76 when the ratchet has taken the necessary number of steps (eg. twenty-five) denoting payment of the proper toll. A retaining pawl 77 co-operates with the ratchet teeth and may be withdrawn by means of an electromagnet 78.

The treadle 12 (cf. FIG. l) co-operates with a contact 79 to energize two relays 80, 81 in parallel when the treadle is depressed; the operating circuit for relay 80 leads over an inner armature and back contact of a further relay 82. Relay 80, when operated, locks over its left-hand armature and front Contact and prepares a circuit for the energization of a slow-releasing relay 83 via its right-hand armature and front contact in series with the left-hand armature and back contact of relay 81; when the latter relay releases upon the lifting of treadle 12 under pressure of its restoring spring 84, relay 83 attracts its single armature and prepares an operating circuit for relay 82 in series with the right-hand armature and front contact of relay 81. This sequence of operations usually takes place when the front wheels of a vehicle pass the treadle 12, the subsequent depression of the treadle by the rear wheels then re-energizing the relay 81 to operate relay 82 and, thereby, to release relay 80. A switching relay 85 normally energizes the red lamp 13' in an obvious circuit including the outer right-hand armature and back contact of that relay; when relay 85 is operated over closed totalizer contacts 76, the same armature at its front contact lights the green lamp 13" while extinguishing lamp 13. Relay 85 locks over its inner right-hand armature and front contact in series with the left-hand back contact and armature of another slow-releasing relay 86, the latter being energizable in parallel with lamp 13" upon operation of relay 82, over its outer armature and front contact, in the energized state of relay 85. Relay 86, in releasing relay 85, relights the lamp 13 as the vehicle leaves the toll gate. Magnet 78, energized over the left-hand armature and front contact of relay 85 upon operation of the latter, has meanwhile attracted pawl 77 whereupon spring 74 has returned ratchet 69 to its starting position.

A further relay 87 is energized in parallel with lamp 13' over the right-hand armature and back contact of relay 36 when the latter is unoperated. When relay 82 makes its outer left-hand front contact in the operating condition of relay 87, a circuit is closed for the energization of a stepping magnet 88 and of an alarm device 89, such as a bell, to indicate a violation. Magnet 88 steps, via a pawl S9', another ratchet 90 biased by a spring 91 into a normal position in which a stud 92 engages a xed stop 93; this stud closes a pair of contacts 94 when the ratchet 90 has taken a predetermined number of steps (e.-g. two) out of its normal position. A retaining pawl 95, engaging the teeth of ratchet 90, is controlled by an electromagnet 96 which can be energized in parallel with magnet 7S by the relay 85 and, alternatively, by a relay 97 which operates upon closure of malfunction-indicating contacts 94. The operation of relay 97 also releases the normally energized solenoid 38, which holds the table 35 in its horizontal position, while simultaneously deactivating the alarm 89; the current flow through solenoid 38 can also be manually interrupted by a circuit breaker 98. A master switch 99 controls the ow of current from source 66 and must be closed to render the system operational; such closure also sets the vibrators 20, 24 and the motor 49 in motion.

As will be apparent from the foregoing description, failure by a driver to pay the proper toll will cause two consecutive depressions of treadle 12, hence operation of relay S2, without concurrent energization of Toll Paid relay 85. This will cause alarm relay 87 to operate, signaling a violation, and will let ratchet 90 take one step out of its starting position. If the same sequence is repeated, a second step taken by ratchet 90 will energize the defect relay 97, cancel the alarm and cause the table 35 to tilt in order to release any coins or other objects creating an obstruction. Naturally, ratchet 90 could also be preset to close the contacts 94 after a number of steps greater than two. Any completion of a full count by the totalizer ratchet 69 will restore the ratchet 90 to normal; the same effect can be had by a manual operation of magnet 88 with the aid of a switch Titti).

It is to be understood that bypass means such as the ramps 32', 32 may also be used to separate more than one of the larger coin sizes from the smallest-size coins and that discriminating means such as those controlled by sensing finger 52 could in such case be coupled with sensing cam 63 or co-operate with a transport arm similar to sector 40 further along the alternate coin path established by these ramps. Such and other modifications will be readily apparent to persons skilled in the art and are intended to be embraced in the spirit and scope of my invention as dened in the appended claims.

I claim:

l. In a coin-collecting device, in combination, a receptacle for coins, guide means forming a path for the removal of coins from said receptacle, said guide means including a substantially vertical tube with a bore adapted to accommodate said coins, a support below said tube tiltable about a substantially horizontal axis offset from said tube, said support having a substantially horizontal receiving surface spaced from the bottom of said tube by a clearance for said coins, said support being further provided with an outlet for said coins olfset from said tube, transport means in said clearance having a formation capable of engaging a coin from said tube for sweeping it from said bore across said surface to said outlet, testing means adjacent said transport means for registering the passage of a coin from said bore to said outlet, and release means operable to tilt said support about said axis away from said tube upon a malfunction of said transport means for clearing obstructions from said surface.

2. The combination according to claim 1 wherein said release means includes a solenoid normally operative to retain said support adjacent said tube.

3. In a coin-collecting device, in combination, a receptacle for coins, guide means forming a path for the removal of coins from said receptacle, said guide means including a substantially vertical tube with a bore adapted to accommodate said coins, a support below said tube tiltable about a substantially horizontal axis offset from said tube, said support having a substantially horizontal receiving surface spaced from the bottom of said tube by a clearance for said coins, said support being further provided with an outlet for said coins offset from said tube, transport means including a flat arm oscillatable below said tube in said clearance and provided with a formation capable of engaging a coin from said tube for sweeping it from said bore across said surface to said outlet, said transport means further including spring means coupled with said arm for urging said formation toward said outlet and continuously operable cam means positively engageable with said arm for periodically realigning said formation with said tube, testing means including a sensing finger adjacent said arm for registering the passage of a coin from said bore to said outlet, and release means operable to tilt said support about said axis away from said tube upon a malfunction of said transport means for clearing obstructions from said surface.

4. In a coin-collecting device, in combination, a receptacle for coins of various denominations, guide means forming a path for the removal of coins within a predetermined size range from said receptacle, said Iguide means including a substantially vertical tube with a bore adapted to accommodate said coins, a support below said tube tiltable about a substantially horizontal axis offset from said tube, said support having a substantially horizontal receiving surface spaced from the bottom of said tube by a clearance for said coins, said support being further provided With an outlet for said coins oifset from said tube, transport means in said clearance having a formation capable of engaging a coin from said tube for sweeping it from said bore across said surface to said outlet, testing means adjacent said transport means for registering the passage of a coin from said bore to said outlet, release means operable to tilt said support about said axis away from said tube upon a malfunction of said transport means for clearing obstructions from said surface, bypass means along said path for shunting oversize coins past said tube, and counting means for said oversize coins at said bypass means.

5. In a coin-collecting device for vehicular tolls, in combination, vehicle-controlled switch means, a receiver for coins deposited from a passing vehicle prior to actuation by said switch means, said receiver including guide means forming a downwardly directed coin channel and a support with a substantially horizontal surface spaced with small clearance from said channel, sensing means in said clearance, transport means in said clearance operative to sweep a deposited coin past said sensing means, indicator means controlled by said sensing means for registering the payment of a predetermined total, alarm means jointly controlled by said switch means and by said indicator means for signaling non-payment of said toll, release means including a violation-counting unit cou- 7 pled with said support Vfor enlarging said clearance upon iterative operation of said alarm means for a predetermined number of times, thereby enabling removal of obstructions preventing proper functioning of said transport means, and restoring means for said unit independently 5 actuatable by said indicator means upon a payment of said toll and by said release means upon the operation thereof for resetting the violation count to zero.

6. The combination according to claim 5 wherein said support is tiltable about a substantially horizontal axis offset from said sensing means, said release means including electromagnetic means normally preventing the tilting of said support about said axis.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 844,308 Johnson Feb. 12, 1907 2,183,611 Goodman Dec. 19, 1939 2,223,146 Yeomans Nov. 26, 1940 2,805,746 Grant Sept. 10, 1957 2,988,191 Grant June 13, 1961 3,048,251 Bower Aug. 7, 1962

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US844308 *Mar 1, 1905Feb 12, 1907Charles W JohnsonCoin-counting machine.
US2183611 *Nov 8, 1935Dec 19, 1939 Token or coin handling apparatus
US2223146 *Oct 7, 1936Nov 26, 1940William J CashmanFluid dispensing apparatus
US2805746 *Mar 21, 1951Sep 10, 1957 Certificate of correction
US2988191 *Mar 21, 1951Jun 13, 1961Universal ControlsL grant
US3048251 *Jan 21, 1959Aug 7, 1962 Coin collector including clearance means
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3791574 *May 10, 1971Feb 12, 1974J PicquotCoin collector receptacle
US4256128 *Mar 22, 1979Mar 17, 1981Chiappetti Arthur BToll collection station arrangement
Classifications
U.S. Classification194/223, 453/3
International ClassificationG07F9/06
Cooperative ClassificationG07F9/06
European ClassificationG07F9/06