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Publication numberUS3188018 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 8, 1965
Filing dateApr 22, 1963
Priority dateApr 22, 1963
Publication numberUS 3188018 A, US 3188018A, US-A-3188018, US3188018 A, US3188018A
InventorsOtteren Wilbur M Van
Original AssigneeAutomatic Tube Company
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Pneumatic tube system carrier
US 3188018 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 8, 1965 w. M. VAN OTTEREN 3,183,018

PNEUMATIC TUBE SYSTEM CARRIER Filed April 22, 1963 2 Sheets-Sheet l INVENTOR. 14443:: M. lydrruiw @QQWWQQQQ iig l I o o (x 7 l I I I llill (lllllllrl lllll H l In I June 8, 1965 w. M. VAN OTTEREN 3,188,018

PNEUMATIC TUBE SYSTEM CARRIER 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed April 22, 1963 IN VENTOR. M4852 M, V44 Urn-BEN ITTOP/Vi United States Patent 3,138,018 PNEUMATIC TUEE SYSTEM (JARRIER Wilbur M. Van ()tteren, San Rafael, Calif, assignor to Automatic Tube (Iornpauy, San Francisco, Calif, a corporation of California Filed Apr. 22, 1963, Ser. No. 274,639 6 Claims. (Cl. 243-35) This invention relates to a pneumatic tube system and more particularly to a carrier for use in pneumatic tube systems.

Pneumatic tube systems are well-known and generally include a plurality of receiving and sending stations or terminals, which terminals are interconnected by a system of transmission carrier tubes or lines. In addition, such systems includes suitable air pressure and vacuum lines for creation of the necessary pressure diiferential system for the transmission of carriers within the transmission line. Carriers (which are often of a cylindrical shaped construction but not limited to such cylindrical shape) are transmitted between the terminals or stations through the pneumatic tubes, or duct-s. The carriers are of a hollow body construction with a movable cover at one end thereof or at the side over an access opening therein. The item to be transmitted such as a message bearing paper, samples, containers of liquid, small parts, blueprints, X-ray negatives, photographs, account tags and the like is inserted in the carrier through the opened access therein, the cover is closed and the carrier is dispatched to the desired receiving station.

Numerous carrier designs have been proposed and used in pneumatic tube systems. Such prior art designs, however, often fail to provide a long and trouble-free life. For example, in many prior art carrier arrangements the fasteners for the covers are subject to wear and must be frequently replaced otherwise, if the faulty cover fastener is not replaced, and the cover opens while the carrier is in transit between stations, the item being transported may fall out of the carrier and lodge in the duct Work,

I thereby resulting in great inconvenience and lost operating time during which the system is inoperable. With some carriers it is possible for the operator to inadvertently leave the cover in an open condition when dispatching the carrier, with the same deleterious results as occur when the cover opens while in transit. Where the carrier is provided with a substantially fail-proof cover, such as, for example, a threaded cover member adapted for cooperation with a threadedbody, the arrangement is oftentimes very inconvenient and time-consuming in use. Further, in addition to the above deficiencies, many prior art carriers are expensive to build.

An object of this invention is the provision of a carrier for use in a pneumatic tube system, which carrier is economically constructed and has a long troublefree operating life.

An object of this invention is the provision of a carrier having a cover which is resiliently biased'to a closed condition.

An object of this invention is the provision of a carrier having a cover which is substantially impossible of ly of the body, an end cover carried at the outer free end of the resilient arm and adapted to close the open end of the body, and a latch carried by the end cover and adapted to lock the same in position over the open end of the body.

In the drawings wherein like reference characters refer to the same parts of the several views,

FlGURE 1 is a fragmentary, elevational view of a down delivery receiving and sending terminal or station with parts shown broken away to show a carrier in the dispatching chamber;

FIGURE 2 is a longitudinal, cross-sectional view of the carrier taken on line 2-2 of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 3 is a top view of the carrier shown in FIG- URE 2;

FIGURE 4 is a side elevational view of a carrier showing the end cover moved to an open condition; and

FiGURE 5 is a transverse cross-sectional view of a carrier embodying a modified form of this invention.

Reference is first made to FIGURE 1 of the drawings wherein the down delivery receiving and dispatching terminal, designated 10, is shown comprising a cabinet having a front panel 11. A pair of doors l2 and 13 are pivotally mounted at the front of the panel, behind which doors are located a dispatching chamber 14, and a carrier receiving chamber 14', respectively. A novel carrier of this invention, designated 16, is shown located within the dispatching chamber 14 in preparation to being sent to another terminal or station, not shown, included in the pneumatic tube system. A portion of the carrier line or tubing system is shown comprising a trans mission line 17 to which a feeder line 18 from the dispatching chamber 14 connects through a suitable Y con nection. It will be understood that in the illustrated receiving and sending terminal the carriers 16 are dispatched from the dispatching chamber 14 through the connecting tube 18 into the transmission system 17, and that carriers sent to the station are received through an inlet tube 19 at the receiving chamber 14'. The doors 12 and 13 are provided with spring-loaded hinges 21 for resiliently biasing the same to the closed position, the doors being manually opened by use of door handles 22.

As mentioned above, the carriers of this invention may be used with pneumatic tube systems of any design. In FIGURE 1 of the drawings the system illustrated (in simplified form) is of the automatic pushbutton type and includes a plurality of station destination pushbuttons 23. With the carrier 16 in the dispatching chamber 14, as illustrated, the operator merely pushes the desired station destination pushbutton 23 and the system is autom-atically conditioned to route the carrier to its desired destination. A motor driven slide gate 24 is included at the inlet to the carrier line 18, which gate is slid back to permit the carrier to enter the tube when the door 12 is closed and the desired station destination push-button 23 is actuated. An indicating light 26 of one color is included on the panel to indicate the presence of a carrier in the dispatch chamber 14. Another colored light 27 is included to indicate the arrival or presence of a carrier at the receiving chamber 14. Since the particular pneumatic tube system with which the novel carrier of this invention is employed forms no part of this invention, no further detailed showing and explanation of the system is believed necessary.

Reference is now also made to FIGURES 2 through 4 of the drawings wherein the novel carrier is shown comprising a base member 31, upon which is supported a tubular body member 32. An elongated arm 33 is secured to the base member 31 by means of rivets 34 or other suitable means and in the normal position, as shown in FIGURE 2, extends longitudinally of the body 32 along the outside thereof. A cover 36 is fixedly secured to the arm 33 at the upper free end thereof for closing the upper free end of the tube 32. The arm is made of resilient material such as spring steel and the cover 36 is moved to an open position by bending or flexing the arm away from the body 32, as best seen in FIGURE 4.

In the illustrated embodiment of the invention, the base member 31 comprises a cup-shape member which includes a base portion 37 and an axial flange 38. For strength, a disc 39 is positioned within the cup-shape member on the bottom 37 thereof. A riding head 41 and air disc 42 are shown attached to the bottom of the base member 31. The reinforcing disc 39, base 37 of the cup member, air disc 42 and riding head 41 are held, or clamped, together by means of fasteners comprising bolts 43 extending through holes formed through such members, and cooperating nuts 43', the nuts being located in a recess 44 formed in the end of the lower riding head 41. A flat disc, or washer 46 between the nuts and riding head prevents mutilation of the riding head by the nuts during assembly of the base member.

The body 32 may be made of any desired material such as metal, plastic, or the like. Often a transparent, highimpact plastic is employed through which the item therewithin may be viewed. Preferably the tubular body 32 snugly engages the base member 31 within the flanged portion 38 thereof, such that a friction fit is established between body and flange. With this construction the tubular body 32 is easily removed from the base member for replacement thereof when desired.

The flange 38 at one side thereof, bulges outwardly slightly at 4% thereby forming an axially extending recess at the inner diameter thereof for accommodation of the resilient arm 33. As mentioned above, the arm 33 is secured to the flange 33 at the recess formed therein by any suitable means such as the rivets 34.

The end cover 36 carried by the free end of the arm 33, is shown comprising a disc'49 and a flanged member from which there extends downwardly an arcuate flange 51. The flange 51 is somewhat less than semicircular in shape and as with the flange 38 on the base member, bulges outwardly as at 52 to form an axially extending recess at the inner wall portion thereof within which recess the resilient arm 33 extends. The flange is fixedly secured to the arm 33 as by means of rivets 53. The member 50 is formed with flat arcuate tab portions 54 shown in broken line in FIGURE 3 of the drawings, for securing of the member to the disc 49 in a manner described below. Obviously, if desired, the flange 51 could be integrally formed on the disc 49.

At the top end cover 36 is an annular riding head 56, the riding head being secured to the disc 49 by means of fasteners comprising bolts 57 and 57' and cooperating nuts 58. The bolts extend through holes in the disc 49 and into holes formed in the annular riding head 56. As seen in FIGURE 3, two of the bolts designated 5'7 extend also through the tab portions 54 formed on the member 56, which tab portions are sandwiched between the disc 49 and riding head 56, to thereby secure the member 5th to the disc 49. The nuts 58 are located within recessed portions designated 59 of the riding head 56, with washers 6t) employed between the nuts and riding head.

The riding heads 41 and 56 may be made of any suitable material, such as felt, which is of sufficiently rigid character to provide a support for the carrier within the transmission tubes. The air disc 42, on the other hand, is made of rubber, or other flexible material, and is intended to provide an air seal between the carrier and tubes whereby a pressure diflerential may be established between the opposite ends of the carrier for transmission thereof within the pneumatic tube system. As best seen in FIGURE 2, the outside diameter of the air disc 42 and riding heads 41 and 56 is greater than the diameter of the tube 32 and is substantially the same as the inside diameter of the tube within which the carrier is adapted to operate; the inner dimensions of a transmission line within which the carrier may operate being illustrated by the vertical broken lines at the sides of the carrier.

The end cover 36 is provided with a releasable catch designated 61 for locking the cover in the closed condition as illustrated in FIGURE 2. An aperture 62 is formed through the disc 49 of the end cover 36 and spaced, upwardly extending lugs 63 are formed on or secured to the disc 49 adjacent the aperture 62. The catch 61 is of the lever-type and includes a lever 64 pivotally mounted intermediate the ends thereof by means of a pivot pin 66 extending therethrough and through a hole formed in the a the lugs 63. The lever 64 is resiliently biased to the latching position shown in FIGURE 2 by means of a compression spring 67 extending between the lever 64 and base or disc 49. A short locating pin 68 extends through the disc 45, and the upper end of the spring may extend into an aperture (not shown) formed on the lower surface of the lever es; the combination of the aperture (not shown) and pin 63 serving to locate and maintain the spring 67 in a captive relation between the lever 64 and disc 49. Rotation of the lever clockwise as viewed in FIGURE 2 of the drawings is limited by engagement of the lever with an edge 69 of the aperture 62.

It will be noted that the one end 64a of the lever 64 extends upwardly above the disc 49 and into the aperture 71 formed through the riding head 56, whereas the other end of the lever as designated 64b extends downwardly thereof and, in the illustrated closed condition of the cover, extends into the body 32, with the curved end 73 of the lever engaging the inner side wall of the body. The cover as is thereby locked in the closed condition shown in FIGURE 2 by means of the flange 51 which partially surrounds the outside of the tubular body 32 and the inner end 73 of the lever 64 which abuts the inner wall of the body 32 opposite the flange 511.

In order to open the carrier the end 64a of the lever is pressed downwardly by the operator in the direction of the arrow 74 shown in FIGURE 4 of the drawings to thereby pivot the end portion 641) out of the tube 32. The cover 36 is then moved in a direction generally transversely of the body 32 to flex or bend the arm 33 away from the body 32 as illustrated in FIGURE 4. The item transported by the carrier is easily placed therein and removed therefrom after the cover has been opened to the position illustrated in FIGURE 4 as described hereinabove.

In order to close the cover 36 the operator merely need release the same from the open position illustrated in FIGURE 4 of the drawings and the resilient arm 33 will carry the cover back into the closed condition illustrated in FIGURE '2 by reason of the spring biasing action of the arm 33. During the automatic closing operation the bottom of the lever portion 64b of the catch 61 rides along the upper edge of the tubular body 3 2 to compress the spring 67. When the lever slides past the inner edge of body 32, it is rotated into latching position by reason of the resilient biasing action of the spring 68. Instead of permitting the cover to spring shut from the open position, the operator may, obviously, manually move the cover into the closed position without relying upon the spring action of the arm 33 to perform the closing action.

In addition to the fact that the operator cannot inadvertently misplace the open end cover 36 since the cover is secured to the base member of the carrier through the arm 33, other advantages accrue by the construction of the carrier of this invention. For example, if the operator dispatches a carrier in which the cover 36 is not completely closed whereby the catch 61 is not in latching position, it will be apparent that the cover 36 must still be in a substantially closed condition before the carrier can beinserted in the dispatching chamber and enter the transmission tube. Thus, even if the catch is not in a latching position the tube will be substantially closed by the cover 36 whereby there exists a good possibility that none of the contents of the carrier will be lost out thereof during transmission of the carrier through the tube system to the receiving stations. Further if the catch is not in a latching position when the carrier is dispatched from the dispatching chamber 14, it will in all probability arrive at the receiving chamber at the station to which the carrier is sent in the latched position. This results from the fact that as the carrier traverses bends in the transmission line, the body 32 may contact the line or tube and a force may thereby be developed between the cover 36 and tube 32 to result in a closing of the cover and subsequent latching of the catch.

Additional advantages of the illustrated construction of the carrier include the fact that the tubular body 32 may be easily removed from the base 31, after the cover has been opened, by simply sliding the tube out of the flanged base portion 38 for replacement of the body. Also it will be apparent that the riding heads 41 and 56 and the air disc 42 may be readily replaced when necessary by simply removing several bolts therethrough. Further, since the cover is positively latched closed no inadvertent opening thereof during the transmission of the carrier within the tube system is possible.

Having now described my invention in detail in accordance with the requirements of the patent statutes, various changes and modifications will suggest themselves to those skilled in this art. For example, as shown in FIGURE .5, the tubular body member, designated 32, may be provided with an elongated axial groove or recess 81 in the outer wall thereof, within which recess the resilient arm 33 may extend in the closed condition of the cover. With such a construction, the need for the bulges 48 and 52 in the flange 38 and 51, respectively. is obviated. It is intended that such changes and modifications shall fall within the spirit and scope of the invention as recited in the following claims.

I claim:

1. A carrier for use in a pneumatic tube system comprising a base member, a tubular body on the base member and extending therefrom, an elongated arm fixed at one end to the carrier adjacent the base and normally extending longitudinally of the base member at the out side thereof, a cover secured to the other, free end of the elongated arm and adapted to close the upper, free end of the tubular body member, said cover having an arcuate generally longitudinally extending flange which engages the exterior of the tubular body when the cover is in closed position, and a releasable catch secured to the interior of the cover and adapted to engage the interior of the tubular body opposite said flange when the cover is in closed position to lock the cover in closed position.

2. A carrier for use in a pneumatic tube system comprising a base member, a tubular body on the base member and extending therefrom, an elongated arm of resilient material, fixed at one end thereof to the carrier adjacent the base member and normally extending longitudinally of the tubular member at the outside thereof, and a cover secured to the other, free end of the elongated member and adapted to close the upper, free end of the tubular body member, said cover being movable to an open position by bending the resilient arm away from the side of the tubular body.

3. A carrier for use in a pneumatic tube system comprising a base member, a tubular member on the base member and extending therefrom, an elongated arm fixed at one end thereof to the carrier adjacent the base member and normally extending longitudinally of the tubular body at the outside thereof, a cover secured to the other, free end of the elongated arm member and adapted to close the upper, free end of the tubular body member and a releasable catch secured to the cover and adapted to engage the body in the closed condition of the cover to maintain the cover in the closed condition, said catch comprising a lever pivotally mounted intermediate the ends thereof on the cover, the said cover being formed with an aperture through which the lever extends, and means resiliently biasing the lever into the latching position.

4. A carrier for use in a pneumatic tube system comprising:

a tubular body having a first end and a second end,

a first closure for said first end,

a second closure for said second end, and

a resilient arm afiixed at one end to said carrier remotely from said second end and affixed at its other end to said second closure,

whereby said second closure is maintained normally in close proximity to said second end and is acted upon by said resilient arm to move toward and to remain in closed position, said resilient arm also permitting movement of said second closure to other positions against the force of said arm.

5. The invention as recited in claim 4 wherein the tubular body is formed with an elongated axial recess in the outer wall thereof within which recess the resilient arm is positioned in the closed condition of the second closure.

6. A releasable catch for a carrier of the type which includes a tubular body closed at one end by a cover which is movable generally radially of the body to an open position, the said catch comprising a lever pivotally mounted intermediate the ends thereof on the cover, the said cover being formed with an aperture through which the lever extends, and means resiliently biasing the lever into the latching position, the said lever engaging the edge of the tubular body during closing motion of the cover to depress the lever against the resilient biasing means, the lever snapping into locked condition when the cover assumes a fully closed position with an end of the lever extending into the tubular body.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 648,853 5/00 Cowley 243-35 1,028,469 6/ 12 Keller Q4335 1,393,466 10/21 Taisey 243-35 1,647,788 11/27 Dinspel 243-35 1,976,995 10/34 Jennings 24335 FOREIGN PATENTS 293,807 8/ 16 Germany.

SAMUEL F. COLEMAN, Pr'imary Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US648853 *Mar 23, 1898May 1, 1900Lamson Cons Store Service CoPneumatic-despatch carrier.
US1028469 *Aug 28, 1911Jun 4, 1912Allen KellerCarrier.
US1393466 *Jun 12, 1917Oct 11, 1921Lamson CoPneumatic-despatch-tube carrier
US1647788 *Nov 5, 1926Nov 1, 1927G & G Atlas Systems IncClosure device for pneumatic dispatch carriers
US1976995 *Oct 11, 1930Oct 16, 1934Lamson CoCarrier
DE293807C * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3655146 *Apr 13, 1970Apr 11, 1972Woll ToniPneumatic dispatch systems
US3667702 *Mar 19, 1970Jun 6, 1972Kelley & Sons Inc C KMethod and apparatus for transporting containers through a pneumatic tube system
US5727455 *Apr 1, 1996Mar 17, 1998Yerman; Arthur J.Automatic syringe destruction system and process
US6565290 *Jul 20, 2001May 20, 2003H-P Products, Inc.Carrier bag for pneumatic delivery system
Classifications
U.S. Classification406/188
International ClassificationB65G51/00, B65G51/26, B65G51/06
Cooperative ClassificationB65G51/06, B65G51/26
European ClassificationB65G51/26, B65G51/06