US 3152740 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 13, 1964 H. v. KINDSETH ETAL 3,152,740 vsuomc MACHINE FOR mspsusma GARMENT BAGS AND SIMILAR ARTICLES Filed Sept. 24, 1962 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 w m my/m m m n M J mwm. m m a 6 mm, 7H w 7 NB Och 1964 H. v. KINDSETH ETAL 3,152,740
VENDING MACHINE FOR DISPENSING GARMENT BAGS AND SIMILAR ARTICLES Filed Sept. 24, 1962 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 F .6 INVENTORS HAROLD l4 K/NDSETH DENNIS L. POWER MEL R. NESETH ATTORNEY H. v. KINDSETH ETAL 3,152,740 vsmnmc MACHINE FOR DISPENSING GARMENT BAGS AND SIMILAR ARTICLES Filed Sept. 24, 1962 Oct. 13, 1964 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 INVENTORS HAROLD v Kl/VDSETH DENNIS L. POMMER CARL R. IVESETH y a 11-41 I u 7 A TTOfi/VEY United States Paem o I s 152 740 VENDING MACHINE i onnisrnNsiNo GARMENT BAGS AND SIMILAR ARTICLES Harold V. Kindseth, Dennis L. Pommer, and Carl R.
Nes eth, Minneapolis, Minn, assignors, by mesne assignments, to Polyco, Ind, Eaglewood, Colo., a corporation of Minnesota Filed Sept. 24, 1962, Ser. No. 225,581 10 Claims. (Cl. 226-11) from a web of flexible material.
Another object of this invention is to provide new and improved vending machine, such as a garment bag (11S.- penser, wherein individual bags or sections may be pos1- tively advanced through the machine into a discharge ,position without regard to the length of the individual sections or bags formed in the web.
Another object of this invention is to provide new and improved means for utilizingthe slits or planes of weaknesses forming individual sections in a continuous web of flexible material to control the advance of the web through a machine of the class described.
A further object of this invention is to provide new and improved means for altering the shape of the slits or planes of weaknesses forming individual sections in a continuous web of flexible material to facilitate the electric control of the advance of the web through a machine of the class described. v
A still further object of this invention is to provide new and improvedelectric switch means for controlling the advance of a web of flexible material through a machine of the class described.
Another object of this invention is to provide in a machine of the class described new and improved means for preventing a stall condition from occurring during the operation of the machine.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings. It will be understood that changes may be made in the details of construction and arrangement of parts without departing from the spirit-and scope of the invention as set forth in the accompanying claims, as the preferred form has been given by way of illustration only.
In the drawings:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a garment bag dispensing machine constructed according to the invention, with certain parts removed and the front cover in an open position for purposes of clarity; 1
FIGURE 2 is a sectional view taken on the line 2-2 of FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 3 is a front elevational view of the machine with part of the front panel broken away for purposes of clarity;
FIGURE 4 is an enlarged fragmentary top view, par- .ti'ally in section, takensubstantially along the line 4-4 of FIGURE 3;
FIGURE 5 is a fragmentary view, taken along the line 55 of FIGURE 7;
FIGURE 6 is a fragmentary view taken substantially along the line 66 of FIGURE 7; FIGURE 7 is an enlarged fragmentary elevational view, partially in section, taken on the line 7-7 of FIGURE 4; FIGURE 8 is an enlarged fragmentary view, partially in section, taken on the line 88 of FIGURE 3;
, 3,152,740 Patented Oct. 13, 1964 FIGURE 9 is a view, partially in section, taken on the line 99 of FIGURE 8;
FIGURE 10 is a view showing a part of the web that is advanced through the machine; and
FIGURE 11 is a circuit diagram.
Generally speaking, according to the principles of our invention, we provide a vending machine adapted for the self-service dispensing of individual sections from a continuous film of thin plastic material. The invention is described in terms of its ability to dispense garment bags from a tubular web of plastic film, each bag being separated from its neighbor by means of spaced recurrent slits or planes of weakness formed in the web. Separation of each bag section from the end of the Web is ac- .cornplished by pulling the lower end of a bag section,
which has been advanced through the machine. The
machine set forth in this description is equipped with novel means for detecting and controlling the advance of each bag section therethrough, including novel means for frictionally retarding the advance of the central portion of the web through the detection'station to permit an electric contact to be made to facilitate the web advance. Advantage is taken of the slits formed in the web and its non-conductive properties to provide reliable and efiicient means for intermittently advancing a section at a time through the machine. Our machine does not require a correctional advance of the web for each cycle of operation nor does it depend on a particular bag or section length for its operation.
Referring now, more particularly, to the drawings, the invention, designated in its entirety by the reference character A, includes a box-like cabinet 20 having an elongated longitudinal article discharge opening 22 in the 'bottom thereof adjacent the lower front wall 24 thereof.
A front panel 26, hingedly mounted as at 23, to lower wall 24, is adapted to swing forwardly into the open position shown in FIGURE 1. Cabinet 20 is divided by an inner wall 28 into a relatively large web dispensing chamber 30 and an end chamber 32 adjacent thereto of lesser size for housing and supporting the coin control and motor means, as will be explained.
Chamber 30 includes a pair of longitudinally spaced loading rails 34 adapted to receive and support a supply roll 36 of plastic film or web 37 formed into individual garment bag sections 3R. Between opening 22 and supply roll 36 a drive roll 38 is rotatably mounted with one end thereof extending through wall 28 into driving connection with an electric motor 40. Drive roll 38 is equipped with a series of longitudinally spaced resilient .web engageable sleeves 42. A squeeze roll 44 having resilient sleeves 46 'is rotatably mounted upon the inner surface of panel 26 in register with drive roll 38. A pair of rockable supports 48 carry each end of squeeze roll 44 upon panel 26. The lower end of each support is hingedly mounted, as at g 50, upon panel 26, while the upper end thereof is slidably above and behind drive roll 38, to the area adjacent discharge opening 22 in cabinet 20. Similarly, a corresponding series of web guides 60 are provided for squeeze roll 44, each of which extends upwardly and rearwardly from panel 26 in spaced surrounding relationship therewith.
:Web guides 69 are longitudinally staggered with respect to web guides 58 to prevent interference when panel 26 Web guides 58 extend down- Wardly and forwardly from fixed longitudinal support 59,
a Q is closed and rolls 38, 44 are in web driving engagement. It can be seen that sleeves 42 and 44 are also arranged with respect to web guides 58, 60 to avoid interference. Lower web guide structure 57 is also provided within chamber 30 adjacent opening 22.
An elongated forward longitudinal support member 61, hingedly mounted within chamber 36 in forward spaced relation to fixed rear support member 59 is yieldingly urged towards rear support member 59 by means of a pair of longitudinally spaced springs 62 connecting members 59 and 61. Members 59 and 61 support the novel switch and web drag means used in controlling the advance of the individual sections 39 from the film 3'7 drawn from supply roll 36. As shown in FIGURE 10, sections 39 of film 37 are formed by virtue of a series of spaced recurrent linear slits 41 cut into film 37. In the case of a garment bag, film 37 constitutes a continuous web of thin tubular plastic material separated into individual bag sections by slits 41 arranged generally in the form of the shoulder portion of the bag, with a central transverse slit and inclined slits on each side thereof extending therefrom to a point adjacent the edges of the web.
As shown in FIGURES 4-7, inclusive, a rear web drag member 64 is mounted on rear support member 5 above drive roll 33 and squeeze roll 44. The body of rear Web drag member 64 is inclined downwardly and forwardly so that the lower forward end thereof is in the plane of web 37. A mating forward web drag member pad 66, mounted upon forward support member 61, is inclined downwardly and rearwardly so the lower rear edge thereof is also in the plane of web 37. Springs 62 normally urge web drag members 64 and 66 into engagement with each other at their respective lower edges, resulting in the yieldable frictional contact therewith of the web 37 as it passes therebetween.
Also mounted upon rear support member 59 is a rear conductive contact plate 68, which is insulated from support member 59 by means of an underlying block 70 of insulating material. Rear contact plate 68 extends downwardly from the lower edge of rear web drag member 64 into the plane of the web 37 adjacent the nip zone 71 created between drive roll 38 and squeeze roll 44. A forward contact assembly engageable with rear contact plate 63 through the slit 41 in web 37 is provided to form an electrical switching means that is operablyresponsive to the movement of the non-conductive web 37 therebetween, as will be explained. The forward contact assembly consists of a conductive contact roller 74 rotatably carried by one end of a conductive link 76, the other end of link 76 being pivotally mounted upon a suitable conductive bracket 78 that is attached to forward support member 61 by means of a block of insulating material. Contact roller 74 is in register with rear contact plate 68 and is normally biased into the plane of web 37 adjacent nip zone 71 by means of springs 62. Suitable leads 82, 82' connect the contact plate 68 and the contact roller 74, both shown in FIG. 7 of the drawings, with the switch means 69, shown in FIGURE 11.
As the non-conductive web 37 passes between contact roller 74 and rear contact plate 68 it provides a layer of insulation therebetween to prevent current from flowing from lead 82 to lead 82', except for the time when the central transverse slit 41 enters the area, as will be explained.
FIGURES 8 and 9 illustrate a floating type of connection between drive roll 38 and the electric motor means 46 employed to rotate drive roll 38. As shown therein,
. the end of drive roll 38 adjacent wall 28 is equipped with a hollow cylindrical extension 86 having an elongated 4 attached to the end of shaft 92, which extends through opening 88. The length of opening 881s dimensioned to allow about 15 of free rotation of roll 38 after motor shaft 2 is stopped.
In addition to motor means 40, chamber 32 of cabinet 20v contains a conventional coin operating means including a coin box 162 positioned to receive coins fed through coin chute 164 of front panel 26 and circuitry 106 (FIG- URE 11) including normally closed switching means 6 to facilitate the advance of an individual section from the web for each insertion of a coin. Other features of a more or less conventional nature, such as a switch for deenergizing the machine when the front panel 26 is opened, suitable locking means, and means to indicate when the machine is empty may be provided.
Referring to FIGURE 11, insertion of a coin into chute 104 momentarily closes coin changer switch 107 which is energized by coil 108. Current is supplied to relay 110, which is locked in through contacts 112 thereof; motor 40 remains energized through contacts 114 of relay until roller contact 74 and rear contact plate 68 make contact through the central slit 41 in web 37. When roller contact 74 and rear contact plate 68 engage each other current is supplied through leads 82, 82' to switch means 69 causing its normally closed contacts to open and de-energize relay 110 thereby disabling motor 40. At this point, the main part of part of a bag section 39 has passed through the nip zone 71 and extends through opening 22 of cabinet. Physical separation of the de pendingsection 39 of'web 37 is accomplished by pulling on the lower free end thereof. This action results in the advancing of the remainder of the non-conductive Web 37 into a position between roller contact 74 and rear contact plate 68 of switch means 69 thereby making the circuit ready for a repeat operation.
Separation or enlargement of the central slit 41 in web 37 prior to its advance into contact with switch means 69 is accomplished by the retarding frictional action of drag members 64, 66' on web 37 as-it passes therethrough. As shown in FIGURE 5, the web 37 is frictionally engaged on each side by drag members 64, 66 prior to its advance into nip zone 71. The resulting retardation of web 37 causesa longitudinal separation or enlargement of. the central slit 41 thereof to thereby allow electrical contact to be made bet-ween contact roller 74 and rear contact plate 68. Web dragrnembers 64 and 66 are preferably madeof sponge rubber material or similar synthetic material exhibiting suitable non-conducting and friction-inducing properties.
The limited free rotation of drive roll 38 resulting from its floating connection with motor means 40 serves toprevent stalling of themachine in case the pull exerted upon the lower free end-of a discharged bag section is insufiicient to advance the web into position between contact roller 74 and rear contact plate 68. Such a condition may arise due to slight diiferences that occur in the fabrication of the web 37 resulting in varying amounts of tension required to separate a length therefrom. By providing limited free rotation of drive roll after the machine is de-energized, the web 37 is freely advanced after each pull a distance sufficient to insure that the next bag section 39 is well beyond the zone between contact roller 74 and rear contact plate 68 before separation occurs.
Obviously, the dimensions of the several structural elements constituting our improved vendingmachine may vary considerably in accordance with the particular application for which the device is intended. While the description speaks in terms of a garment bag dispensing machine, it should be understood that other articles may i be dispensed from a machine coming within the purview of the invention. Such articles may include single thickness plastic film sections, paper sections, and other articles formed in a length of suitable flexible non conductive material. In a practical and commercially acceptable vending machine embodying the invention, web 37 was formed from a tubular film of polyethylene material. The film thickness ranged from /2 to 2 mils depending upon the thickness desired in the particular garment bag being dispensed.
Although the present invention has been described in connection with a preferred embodiment thereof, variations and modifications may be resorted to by those skilled in the art without departing from the principles outlined in the foregoing. We consider all of these variations and modifications to be within the true spirit and scope of the present invention, as disclosed in the foregoing description and defined by the appended claims.
. 1. In a vending machine for dispensing garment bags and similar articles formed in a web of non-conductive material by virtue of spaced recurrent generally transverse slits therein, a cabinet having an article discharge opening therein, a supply roll carried within said cabinet, an electrically powered drive roll in said cabinet between the opening therein and said supply roll, a squeeze roll yieldingly biased into web driving engagement with said drive roll, means for electrically controlling said drive roll, said control means including switch means for disabling said drive roll in response to the passage of a slit in the said web between said drive and said squeeze roll, said switch means including a first contact engageable with one surface of the said web anda second contact engageable with the opposite surface of the said Web, said contacts being in register with at least one of the slits in the said web, means yieldingly' biasing said contacts towards each other, and means engageable with the said web adapted to open a slit therein as it passes through said contacts whereby to permit an electrical connection to be made between said contacts to disable said drive roll.
2. The vending machine described in claim 1 wherein said means for opening a slit in the said web consists of a generally resilient non-conductive drag member, on each side the said web adjacent said switch means, said drag members being adapted to cause a slit in the said web to longitudinally enlarge whereby to bring said contacts together.
3. The vending machine described in claim 1 wherein coin actuated means are provided to initially energize said electrical control means.
4. The vending machine described in claim 1 wherein said drive roll is provided with means for allowing a limited free rotation thereof in the direction of the travel of the said web whereby to prevent the stopping of the said web during the time a slit therein is in register with said first and second contacts.
5. In a vending machine for dispensing garment bags and similar articles formed in a tubular web of dielectric material by virtue of spaced recurrent transverse slits therein including a cabinet having an article discharge opening therein, a supply roll in said cabinet, a drive roll in said cabinet between the open-ing therein and said supply roll, means including electrical control means for intermittently rotating said drive roll, a squeeze roll yieldingly biased into web driving engagement with said drive the plane of the said web, and web drag means on each side of the said Web adjacent said switch contacts adapted to frictionally engage the said Web as it moves therethrough and open a slit therein so as to permit said switch contacts to engage each other through the enlarged opening formed in the said Web by said web drag means.
6. The vending machine described in claim 5 wherein said web drag means consists of a resilient drag member positioned adjacent one of said switch contacts and engageable with the surface of the said web adjacent thereto, and a resilient drag member positioned adjacent to the other of said switch contacts and engageable with the surface of the said web adjacent thereto, one of said resilient drag members being biased towards the other of said drag members into the plane of the said web.
7. A vending machine for dispensing plastic garment bags and similar articles formed in a web by spaced slits therein including housing means having an article discharge opening therein, a supply roll mounted with said housing, means including electrical drive means for advancing a web from said supply roll through the article discharge opening in said housing, control means for intermittently energizing said drive means, said control means. including switch means within said housing operable to make contact in response to the passage therebetween of a slit in the said web, and frictional drag means engageable with the said web within said housing operable to enlarge a slit in the said web as it passes between said switch means.
8. A vending machine for dispensing garment bags and similar articles formed in a web flexible non-conducting material by spaced slits therein including a cabinet having an article discharge opening therein, means mounting a supply roll of flexible non-conducting material in said cabinet, means including electrical drive means for advancing a web from the said supply roll through the article discharge opening in said cabinet, electrical control means for intermittently energizing said drive means to advance individual sections of the said web, said control means including switch means engageable with opposite sides of the said web within said housing and operable to make contact upon the passage therebetween of a slit in the said web, and frictional drag means on each side of the said web adapted to enlarge a slittherein as it passes therebetween whereby to allow said switch means to make contact.
9. The vending machine described in claim 8 wherein .said switch means consists of a contact plate engageable with one surface of the said web, a contact member engageable with the other surface of the said web, and means normally biasing said contact member into the plane of the said web towards said contact plate.
10. The vending machine described in claim 8 wherein said frictional drag means consists of a first dragmember frictionally engageable with one surface of the said web, a second drag member frictionally engageable with the other surface of the said web, and means normally biasing said one of drag members into the plane of the Web towards the other of said drag members.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Re. 20,793 Hamer July 12, 1938 2,760,290 Miller et al. Aug. 28, 1956 2,878,014 Zeigle et al. Mar. 17, 1959 3,051,953 Shepard Aug. 28, 1962