US 3162439 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 22, 1964 w. 1 PoLAND ETAL 3,162,439
DOCUMENT STACKING DEVICE Filed SEPT.. 24, 1962 2 Sheets-Sheet l DeC- 22, 1964 w. L. POLAND ETAL 3,162,439
DOCUMENT STACKING DEVICE FiledSept. 24, 1962 Y 2 Sheets--Sheefl naz ,4 from/ff United States Patent 3,l52,439 DCUMENT SACKING DEVlCE William L. Poland, Norwalk, Gustave D. Cerf, East Nor- Waik, and Warren 3. Finclmey, idgeiield, Conn., assignors to Sperry Rand Corporation, New York, N.Y., a corporation of Delaware Filed Sept. 24, 1962, Ser. No. 225,449 2 Ciams. (Cl. 27-71) This invention relates generally to sheet or document handling mechanism and has more particular reference to a device operating in conjunction with document feeding means for receiving documents in incoming sequence and stacking them without damage thereto and with close registration of their leading edges.
Document or sheet feeding devices of the type herein disclosed function to receive documents being fed at a relatively high velocity and to discharge the documents onto a receiving tray or platform after they are decelerated to zero velocity. It will of course be evident that with devices of this type, when adapted for operation with high speed feeding means, one of the problems which must be met is the avoidance of damage to the leading edge of the document as it is brought to rest on the stacking platform, particularly in the case of relatively thin documents. Another problem inherent in devices of this type is that of avoiding tear or mutilation of the documents as they are brought into contact with the document stack, especially in cases where the documents may be torn, wrinkled, or otherwise partially mutilated.
The invention is shown herein in an embodiment adapted for stacking documents such as bank checks or the like and comprises a drum-like member driven at greatly reduced surface velocity relative to that of the incoming documents and formed with a plurality of arcuate slots communicating with its periphery. Means are provided for directing the incoming documents, which are traveling at a higher velocity, into said slots where they are momentarily retained by frictional force and their velocity is reduced to that of the drum-like member. Thereafter, at a subsequent point in the drum-like members rotation, a stripping member engages the leading edge of the document to Withdraw it from said slots and in this manner transfers the document to the stacking table. The documents are retained in stacked arrangement by the periphery of the drum-like member, but since they are conveyed to the stacking table within the aforementioned slots, they are brought into stacking position from a point separated from the end of the stack so as to be added to the stack without brushing or rubbing across the surface of the previously stacked document. For these reasons the device is able to handle, reliably and without damage, documents of varying thickness and surface area and which may contain various forms of surface irregularities or degrees of mutilation.
It is therefore an object of the invention to enable reliable stacking of documents feeding at relatively high velocity.
lt is a further obiect of the invention to avoid damage or mutilation to rapidly fed documents as they are brought to rest on a stacking platform.
it is a further object of the invention to reduce the velocity of rapidly fed documents before they are brought to rest on a stacking platform.
It is a still further object of the invention to avoid brushing or rubbing contact between documents while a document is being deposited on a document stack.
Further objects of the invention, together with the features contributing thereto and the advantages accruing therefrom, will be apparent from the following description when read in conjunction with the drawing wherein:
FIG. l is a plan view of the stacking drum along with the portion of associated document conveying mechanism.
FIG. 2 is a plan View of the drum in a different rotated position.
FG. 3 is a detail view of a deliector member carried by the drum.
FIG. 4 is a sectional View taken along the line 4--4 of FIG. l.
FIG. 5 is a sectional view taken along the line 5-5 of FIG. l.
FIG. 6 is a plan View of a modilied form of stacking drum.
FIG. 7 is a View similar to FIG. 6 showing still another modification inthe form of the drum.
The document feeding mechanism for conveying documents to the stacking drum may be of any suitable form, and in FIG. 1 there is shown by Way of example a system of feed belts and rollers for conveying documents to the novel stacking means hereinafter to be described from a document processing stage within the feed path which may for example be a reading station le. Opposed pairs Y of feed rollers ll, l2 act to eject the document from the reading station through guide plates 13 which direct it into the grip of pairs of opposed feed belts 14, 1d. The belts i4 are wrapped around pulleys 16 carried by a shaft 17 and pulleys i8 carried by a shaft i9. The shafts are suitably journaled in a main base plate Ztl which provides a common support for the feeding mechanism and stacking mechanism hereinafter to be described. The belt 15 is wrapped around a pulley Z'carried by a shaft 2?. secured in the base plate 2i) and runs over a series of other pulleys including pulley 23 and a driving pulley, not shown. As can be seen in FIG. 5, the shaft 19 is supported by a bearing 2d and extends below the main base plate 2i) Where it carries a gear 2d and a pulley 2'7. The gear 26 is in meshing engagement with a gear 28 carried by a shaft 39 suitably journaled in a support bracket 31 secured to the under side of the base frame plate 2). Shaft 30 also carries a pulley 32 around which is wrapped a drive belt 33, running to the driving source of power, not shown, but which acts to keep the feed belts ld, 15 in constant rotation, so as to pick up and convey documents conveyed thereto from the read station 19.
The belts 14, l5 serve to convey each document up to a switching station whereat the document may be directed into either of two alternative paths of travel, one of which leads to the novel stacking means hereinafter to be described, the other of which may lead to a further processing station or another stacking station, not shown, depending upon the processing function for which the equipment is intended. For selective document routing purposes a deflector finger 35 may be provided at the switching point, said linger being pivotally mounted on a guide block 36 and operated by the armature of an electro-magnet 37, suitably controlled for enabling the document to continue feeding under the inliuence of belts i5 in cooperation with opposed belts 38 to one destination or to be diverted by the deflector finger and routed along a feed path defined by guide plate 39 on one side and the block 36 and guide plate dll on the other side. In this latter route, in which a document e@ is shown being fed, the document is directed into the grip of feed rollers 44, 45, the rollers 44 being mounted on a shaft 46 suitably journaled in the base plate 2d and serving as driving rollers, the rollers 45 being carried in a pivotal arm 47 yieldably biased by a spring pressed plunger 48. The rollers 4d are driven from the shaft 3d which, as can be seen in FIG. 5, carries a pulley 5t aroundwhich is wrapped a drive belt 52 which after being drawn around an idler pulley S3, see FIG. 1, reaches around a pulley carried by a portion of the shaft 46 extending below the base plate thereby causing rotation of the feed rollers 3 44, 45 to continue advance of the document along the feed path defined by the guide plates 39, 41.
From the foregoing it will be apparent that each document 40 to be stacked is fed along a feed path which directs the documents along a line which is substantially tangential to the surface of a drum-like stacking member comprised of a pair of discs 60 mounted inVspaced-apart relation on a shaft 61 which, as can be seen by reference to FIG. 4, is supported in a bearing 62 secured to the base frame plate 20. The portion of the shaft extending below the base frame plate carries a pulley 63 around which is wrapped a drive belt 64 which reaches around the pulley 27, see FIG. 5, on shaft 19 and `thereby provides the means whereby the stacking drum, comprising the discs 60, is driven. An adjustably positionable idler pulley 65, see FIG. 1, bearing on the drive belt 64 enables the tension of the belt to be properly adjusted. It will be apparent from the means just described that the stacking drum is driven with a surface speed substantially reduced from that of the feed belts 14, 15 and the feed rollers 44, 45, the reduction in speed being approximately one-half that of the said feeding mechanism.
The discs 60, in the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, are formed with arcuate slots 66a, 66b which communicate with the peripheral surface of the discs and extend part way around the discs for receiving documents 40 introduced thereinto in a manner hereinafter to be described. Carried by each of the discs 60 at the entrance of each of :the slots 66a, 66b is a document deflecting member 71, see also FIG. 3, made of low friction material and attached by means of a leaf spring 72 to a rib 73 mounted between and secured to said discs near the beginning of the said slots. As is shown, the deflector 71 is supported so as to lie in a cut-away area of the discs 60 at the beginning or entrance of each of the slots 66a, 66h and is formed to provide a deflecting tip which normally projects beyond the circumferential plane of the discs so as to intercept a document advancing at higher speed from the guide plates 39, 41 and direct the document into the associated slot. As can be seen better from FIG. 3, the defiector 71 is shaped with a raised central section lying between the planes of the discs 60 and from which underswept wings flare outwardly over the discs. The under side of the deector provides a smooth, unbroken surface for guiding documents into the associated slots. The outer surface of the deflector is rounded so as to lie entirely within the Vsurface plane of the discs when the deflector wipes past the document stack as will be hereinafter more fully described.
As a document 40 emerges from the end of the guide plates 39, 41 it cornes under the influence of additional feed roll means which tend to maintain the feeding velocity of the document thereby causing it to overtake the stacking drum and advance into the slots 66a or 66h, whichever may be in position to receive the document. This additional feed means comprises a series of paired feed rollers 76, 77, 78 having their axis arranged about an arc concentric with the stacking drum and mounted on a separate frame plate 80 which preferably is pivotally joined to the main base plate 20 by a pivot bearing 81. The pivotal frame plate 80 carries Vin spaced-apart relation thereto a pair of auxiliary frame plates 82, 83, see also FIG. 4, between which the feed rollers 76, 73 are mounted. The rpivotal frame structure just described serves to dispose the rollers, the feeding surfaces of which are of a material having a high co-efiicient of friction relative to the drum surface, separated from the surface of the stacking drum av distance less than the thickness of the thinnest document to be fed and stacked by the mechanism. This close spacing adjustment between the rollers and the surface of the drum 60 is made possible by an adjustable securing means for the pivoted frame plate 80 including a set screw 85 threaded into a bracket 86 fastened to the main base plate 20, the set screw being adjustably set to limit the pivotal turning of the support plate S0 by engaging a limit block 87 secured to the plate Sti. The bracket 86 also carries a pivotal clamping bolt 88 fitted with a knurled knob 89 bearing on the outer edge of the limit block 87 for securing it firmly against the set screw, which knob may be loosened and swung clear of the frame plate when it is desired to swing the assembly clear of the stacking drum.
As can best be seen in FIG. 4, each of said rollers are fitted in spaced-apart relation on a common hub 91 carried by a roller shaft 92 suitably supported in the frame plates 80, 82, S3. The peripheral surface of the hubs 91 serves as a pulley whereby through the medium of a drive belt 93 the several paired rollers 76, 77, 7S are coupled together and driven at a uniform speed corresponding to the document feeding speed and which is substantially in excess of the surface speed of the stacking drum dises 60. The belt 93, as can best be seen in FIG. 1, reaches about a series of idler pulleys 94 suitably supported for rotative movement by the frame plate 80 and arranged intermediate of the feed rollers so las to define a course for the drive belt 93 which enables it to make a good driving Contact or engagement with the hubs 91 associated with the respective feed rollers. In the case of the feed rollers 76, as can be seen in FIG. 4, the supporting shaft therefor is a drive shaft which extends through a cut-away slot 95 in the main base plate 2d and carries at its lower end below the base plate a pulley 96 around which is wrapped the drive belt 52 which, as heretofore described, also serves to drive the feed rollers 44 thereby providing means whereby the feed rollers 76, 77, 7S are driven in unison with and at the same surface velocity as the means operating to feed the document d@ to the stacking drum.
The rotation of the stacking drum, it Will be understood, is synchronized with the means feeding documents to the drum so that as the leading edge of each successive document being fed is ejected from the guide plates 39, 41 and into engagement with the feed rollers 7e, one of the drum detiectors 71 will be located at a rotated position slightly in advance thereof to thereby intercept the faster feeding document and direct it into'the associated slot of the drum. FlG. l illustrates the position of the drum as the leading edge of a document emerges from the feeding mechanism guide plates 39, i1 and is diverted by deflector 71 into the slot 66a. In the position shown, the document is still being advanced at its initial or norl mal velocity under the influence of the feed rollers 76 due to the high co-efiicient of friction thereof relative to that of the drum, thereby causing a document to overtake the drum and ride into the slot. As the drum continues its rotation to the position shown in FIG. 2, in which position the document has passed feed roller 76, the document comes under the influence of the feed roller 77 which continues to propel it at its initial velocity causing its continued penetration into the slot 66a. Similarly, the feed roller 78, at a later degree of the drums rotation and after the document has passed roller 77, substantially maintains the document at its original velocity overriding the drum so that it will still further penetrate the slot. After the documents trailing edge has passed roller 7S, its velocity quickly decelerates to that of the drum since its inertia at the higher velocity is rapidly offset by the friction encountered within the arcuate slot.
Thereafter as the drum continues to rotate, the document is carried with it at the drums Velocity until Vthe leading edge of the document is brought into contact with a stripping member or stop 101 preferably made of resilient material. The stop projects on both sides of the drum, at substantially right angles to the slots, from the edge of a stacking wall 102 securedV in upright relation to the base plate 20 and providing a registration surface for the leading edges of the documents as they are removed frorn the stacking drum. A stacking table or platform 103 is also suitably secured to the base plate 20 and serves in cooperation with the Wall ,102 to provide a reeptacle for receiving documents delivered thereto by the stacking drum. An upright retainer plate 164 formed with handle grip 1.95 acts as a backing for the stack, the retainer plate being slideably mounted on the wall 162 in any suitable manner, such as by rollers 1%, and yieldably biased towards the stacking drum so as to comply with the increasing dimension of the stack as documents are delivered thereto from the stacking drum.
After a document has been brought into Contact with the stop itil the continued rotation of the drum acts to Withdraw the document from the slot, and this is best seen in PEG. l with reference to the slot ook from which a document has been partially withdrawn. As the drum continues rotating from the position shown in FlG. l and the document is becoming fully withdrawn from `the slot, the surface of the drum acts in camming fashion to push the document laterally onto the stack where it is retained by the periphery of the drum as it continues to rotate. lt will be noted that as each document is brbught by the drum into stacking position to be ejected from the slot by the action of the stop fdl, each incoming document is separated from the stack by that portion of the drum discs 6*@ lying exteriorly of the slot. In this manner it will be apparent that each document is thus deposited at the end of the stacl: in a lateral direction by the camming action of the drum and is not brushed or rubbed against the end document in the stack as it is added thereto. This feature avoids the risl: of damaging documents especially those which are extremely thin or which may already be partially mutilated. The stach of documents it? is held in upright position on the stacking table 3193 by the periphery of the drum discs dil and the outer surface of the deilectors 'Fi both of which, as heretofore mentioned, are formed of material having a low co-efcient of friction. The deflectors '7l when brushing against the stack are excd slightly inwardly to a position Where their outer surface will lie Within the plane of the drums periphery and in Which position the associated slot is not closed off but still retains a suicient opening for ejection of a document therefrom.
FIG. 6 shows a modified form of stacking drum llt) which is similar in all respects to the drum heretofore described except that it is provided with three slots, lilla, llb, and Mic, it being understood that any number of slots could be provided in the drum depending upon the size of the drum employed and the length of the document being fed. PEG. 6 also illustrates the capability of the device for handling documents which may be considerably longer than a nominal length. Under these circumstances the overtravel of the document by action of the feed rolls may cause the document to loop after it has bottomed in one of the slots and before it has cleared the last feed roller 7S. This action is permitted by the novel design and does not hinder the proper stacking of such a document.
FlG. 7 illustrates still another version of stacking drum 120 wherein the slots 121g, 12117, 12in' are formed in an inwardly spiralling configuration. It will be apparent that this latter embodiment enables a greater number of slots to be provided in a drum of a given size.
While there have been shown and described what are considered to be preferred embodiments of the invention, it will, of course, be understood that variations in form could be made without departing from the spirit of the invention, and it is therefore intended that the invention be not limited to the exact forms herein shown and described nor to anything less than the whole of the invention as hereinhefore set forth and as hereinafter claimed.
The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:
l. In a document handling mechanism having feeding means operable at a predetermined velocity for serially advancing documents in flexible sheet form along a feed path, stacking means cooperating with said feeding means, and receptacle means for receiving the documents from said stacking means, said stacking means comprising a continuously rotating drum revolving within an orbit disposed tangentially to said feed path and at a surface Velocity less than that of said feeding means, said drum being formed with at least one arcuately inwardly extending slot and a surface recess communicating with its peripheral surface, said drum being positioned adjacent the receptacle means so that the peripheral surface of said drum bears against documents in said receptacle means to retain the documents in a stacked formation, a deflector member, means supporting said detlector member by that portion of said drum which defines the outer surface of said slot, said deector member carried by said drum substantially within said recess and formed with a deflecting tip normally projecting beyond the circumferential piane of said drum for intercepting an incoming document and directing it into said slot, said deflector member further including a spring member for biasing said defiector member to the position wherein the deflecting tip portion thereof projects beyond the circumferential plane of said drum, but recedes into said surface recess when carried into bearing Contact with a stack of documents .in said receptacle means, said feeding means cooperating with and operating at higher velocity than said drum for advancing a document relative to said drum and causing the document to penetrate said slot, and stop means disposed across the path of a document being carried Within said slot for stripping same from said slot and guiding its transfer into a stacked formation in said receptacle means.
2. The combination as dened in claim l wherein the document engaging surface of said feeding means possesses a higher coefcient of friction than the peripheral surface of said drum and is resiliently spaced from said drum a distance less than the thickness of a document.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,031,136 Sewick Feb. 18, 1936 2,850,281 Heimliclter et al. Sept. 2, 1958 3,062,537 Hanstein et al. Nov. 6, 1962