US 3276457 A
Abstract available in
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 4, 1966 P. EDDS 3,276,457
TOKEN DISPENSER INCLUDING A MOTOR DRIVEN RECIPROCATING EJECTOR Filed Oct, 20, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet l i ELEC. courRoLs f Oct. 4, 1966 P. EDDs 3,276,457
TOKEN DISPENSER INCLUDING A MOTOR DRIVEN RECIPRGCATING EJECTOR Filed Oct. 20, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 j. 46134 .156450 04 JOE mi Jog United States Patent 3,276,457 TOKEN DISPENSER INCLUDING A MOTOR DRIVEN RECIPROCATING EJECTOR Parker Edds, Ilain and Rea, Fain and Rea Bldg., Branson, Mo. Filed Oct. 20, 1964, Ser. No. 405,103 Claims. (Cl. 13S-5) This invention relates to a dispenser, and more particularly to a device, apparatus or mechanism for dispensing stamps, tokens, etc. to a customer as an incident to depositing money in a coin controlled device.
Trading stamps, tokens and the like are widely distributed in connection with cash sales to stimulate trading at a particular location. Such stamps generally are dispensed manually, and in some instances machines have been utilized for dispensing stamps from rolls in accordance with control buttons or the like pushed thereon. All such machines with which I have been familiar heretofore have required the presence of an operator.
In many enterprises, one prime factor in making the enterprise popular is the complete lack of an operator, or the coverage of a large number of machines or the like by a single operator or Overseer. In particular, in coin operated laundromats, there may be only one operator or overseer for -several dozen washing machines and driers, and it is even possible for such establishments to operate without any operator or Overseer at all. In accordance with the desire to maintain personnel at a minimum, each machine is provided with its own coin mechanism, and is operable only upon receipt of one or more coins of suitable denomination. Obviously, trading stamps and the like are as desirable in a laundromat as anywhere elese, yet it is not feasible for an operator to be present each time a coin is deposited, with the operator thereafter to hand out the requisite trading stamps, coupons or tokens.
Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide apparatus for automatically dispensing a predetermined quantity of trading stamps, coupons, tokens or the like when coins are deposited in a coin operated machine.
More particularly, it is an object of this invention to provide a device for dispensing trading stamps and the like for connection to an existing coin operated machine without the necessity of reworking the coin operated machine in any substantial Way.
It is further an object of this invention to provide a device for automatically dispensing trading stamps, coupons, tokens, etc. from the bottom of a vertical stack thereof.
It is further an object of the present invention in a dispensing device to provide a known construction in an unconventional environment to provide hitherto unrecognized advantages.
It is further an object of this invention to provide a locked device for dispensing trading stamps and the like concomitant with operation of a coin operated device, wherein improved latching or lock means is provided.
Other and further objects and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following description when taken in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a trading stamp or the like dispensing apparatus constructed in accordance with the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a somewhat schematic representation of a coin operated device such as a washing machine with the present invention attached thereto;
FIG. 3 is a longitudinal, vertical sectional view through the apparatus of FIG. l as taken along the line 3-3 in FIG. 1;
3,276,457 Patented Oct. 4, 1966 FIG. 4 is a fragmentary sectional view similar to FIG. 3 and showing the parts in a different position of operation; l
FIG. 5 is a horizontal cross-sectional View taken along the line 5-5 in FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a vertical sectional view taken substantially along the line 6-6 in FIG. 3; and
FIG. 7 is a perspective view of certain of the operating parts of the apparatus.
Reference should be had first to FIG. 2 for an understanding of the environment of the present invention. Accordingly, there is illustrated in a highly schematic manner a coin operated machine or device such as a washing machine 1l) having a coin receptacle 12 leading through a slug rejector 14 to a coin chute 16. The coin chute is provided with a switch 18 having an operating member 20 projecting into the coin chute for engagement and operation by a coin passed by the slug rejector 14. The switch is connected to a suitable source of power such as a volt A.C. supply line 22 and. also to a solenoid 24 forming a part of the present invention. As will be appreciated, other voltages could be used, and the current could be rectified to provide direct current to the solenoid. This is all well known, and forms no particular part of the present invention, since the present invention will work either with an A.C. or a DC. solenoid, and at any standard voltage.
The coin chute also contains the usual switch 26 with the operating member 28 projecting into the chute for starting an operating cycle of the machine electrical controls 30. The coin chute terminates in a coin box 32 in accordance with the usual practice.
Turning now to the present invention, there will bie seen in FIGS. 1 and 3-6 a dispensing apparatus 34. The dispensing device comprises a generally rectangular housing 36 having a back wall 38 which is slightly higher than it is wide, and provided with a nut member 40 welded on the inner surface thereof. A door or bottom wall 42 is formed integral with the back Wall 38 and is rather narrow relative thereto, from front to back. A right side wall 44 is similarly provided, and this is welded along its juncture to the floor 42. A top wall 46 also is provided, as is a left side wall 48, both being integral with the back wall 38 and welded to one another at their juncture, and also respectively to the right side wall 44 and the floor 42.
The :left wall 48 is provided near the bottom thereof with a horizontal dispensing slot 5l) overlying a suitable catcher or receptacle 52. Trading startups or the like dispensed through the slot 50 as hereinafter set forth are received in this catcher or receptacle to be removed manually by the customer.
Approximately the top half of the left 'wall 48 is provided with a centrally located, vertical slot 54. This slot communicates with a similar slot 55 leading in from the left end of the top Wall 46, and is for the purpose of providing fresh coupons, trading stamps or tokens to the storage stack thereof in the machine or apparatus, as hereinafter set forth. An L-shaped steel strap 56 has a vertical leg 58 welded to the inside of the left wall 48 and overlapping the slot or opening S4. Similarly, the strap 56 is provided with a horizontal leg 60 welded to the t-op wall I46 and overlapping the `slot 55 therein. The near or forward edge of the strap 56 is recessed slightly from the front of the housing 44, as perhaps :best seen at 62 in FIG. 1. The vertical leg 58 of the strap extends from the top of the left Wall substantially to the bottom there-of.
There is Va similar L-shaped strap 64 of relatively lesser height disposed to the rear of the slot 48, and including a vertical leg 66 overlapping the `slot 54 and terminating slightly below the bottom edge of the slot, as may be seen in FIG. 1. In addition, the strap 64 includes a 3 horizontal arm 68 secured to the underside of the top wall 46 and overlapping the slot 55. The horizontal legs or arms of both straps 56 and 64 terminate just slightly to the right of the horizontal slot 55.
A sheet metal latch member 70 is secured below the undersi-de of the top wall 46 against the straps 56 and 64 by suitable fastening means such as screws 72, although welding of this latch member in place also is contemplated. The latch member extends betwee-n the L-shaped members 56 and 64 and is provided with a downwardly turned tongue 74, in the nature of a strike. C-ooperatively therewith there is provided a conventional lock 76 operable by .a key 78. The lock is of a type capable of 90 rotation with the key 7 8, and includes an arm 80 having a right angled end or ange 82 disposed for latching behind the tongue 74, whereby to hold the upper end of the sheet metal, L-shaped cover member `84 in place, the cover member fitting closely within the slot 56 and carrying the lock at its rear end in conventional fashion. The lower end of the cover member 84 is provided with a sheet metal detent 86 on its inner surface and extending downwardly therefrom to latch behind the left wall 48 below the slot. The removal and lreinstallaltion of the cover member will be apparent from FIG. 3, the lock 76 .and ar-m 80 Iand flange 82 being turned 90 so that the cover member can be pivoted from the normal, solid line position to the dashed line position, and then lifted up for complete removal from the housing.
The housing 36 is further provided with an L-shaped sheet metal strap I88 which is spot welded against the end wall 44 and floor 42, being spaced in from the front the same distance as the L-shaped strap 56. The L- shaped strap 56 Iand 88 between them form a stop for a front cover plate 90. The cover plate fits within the side walls, the top wall and floor and butts against these two L-shaped plates. The front wall is provided with a lock 92 of .a type c-apable of continuous rotation upon insertion of a key 94. An exension 96 of the lock is provided with a threaded stud -98 which is designed to be threaded into the nut member 40 on the back wall 3'8. Thus, the cover member is held tightly in place, and can be removed only by several rotations of the lock by means of the -key 94 to unthread the stud 98 from the nut member 40. Thus, access to the interior of the housing cannot be gained by picking the lock to produce a limited degree of rotation. IFurthermore, the threaded locking is considerably stronger than any simple tongue type of lock would be. Furrthermore, it allows the cover member to be tightened dow-n firmly against the L-shaped stops 56 and 88, whereby positively to preclude any looseness or rattling.
inside of the housing and on top of the door 42 there is provided on operating base 100. T-he operating base 100 includes a sub-base 102 of a fibrous material such as chipboard secured to the floor by means such as wood screws 104 passing through the floor 42 and threaded into the sub-base 102. The sub-base has bonded thereto a plastic laminate '106 of .a conventional type used for counter tops and the like. In fact, the base is of generally the same construction as many counter tops. The base 'is provided at the right end with a central, generally U- shaped recess (108, hereinafter to be referred to.
The major portion of the base terminates short of the left end wall at '1110, as readily may be seen in FIG. 5. However, the base has a forwardly projecting tongue 112, as Ibest seen in FIG. 7. A magazine 114 of substantially Vsquare cross section, and generally tubular in nature with .an open front slot 116 has depending sidewalls 118 secured to the base tongue 116 by means such as screws 120. The magazine is provided at the left side thereof with a transverse opening 122 extending completely across the magazine. This opening 122 is aligned with the slot 50 in the left end wall 48, and is of the same size.
' A plurality of a't, tablet-like dispensing units 124 is provided in the magazine, and these are readily inserted from the top with the cover 84 removed. The dispensing unit-s 124 are of a proper size to be pushed edgewise out through the opening :122 .and the slot 50. The dispensing units may comprise tablets or tokens, if so desired, or in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the linvention Ithey comprise a double layer of pasteboard with trading stamps secured therebetween, the pasteboard to be torn open by the customer for use of the trading stamps.
The sole-noid 24 hereinbefore referred to electrically is disposed immediately to the right of 4the magazine 1114, and is of conventional construction including a coil winding 126 on a laminated core 128. A T-shaped plunger or armature 130 is electrically attracted into the core from the rest position of FIG. 3 to the operated position of FIG. 4 when the solenoid coil is energized.
The solenoid is provided with laterally exten-ding base flanges 132, and spacer washers 13'4 and shim plates 136 are positioned between these flanges and the plastic laminate 106 of the base 100. 'Screws or bolts 138 pass up through the base, being counter sunk therein, and also through the flanges 1132, having nuts 148 on the topends thereof to mount the 4solenoid in position.
The shims or spacer plates 136 are spaced apart a proper distance to form a guideway or track for the horizontal expelling member 150 of an L-shaped pusher member152 having an upstanding flange or tail 154` with an aperture or slot 156 near the upper end thereof, the slot being vertically elongated. A rearward extension 158 on the solenoid plunger extends through the slot 156 and has a spring anchor 160 thereon. A helical spring 162 is stretched `between the anchor 160 and an anchor member in the form of a screw 164 in the recess 108 at the right end of the base 100.
It will be observed that the spring 162 biases the solenoid plunger and also the pusher 152 in retracted position, and also holds down the rear end of the pusher.
The plastic laminate provides a remarkably goed slide base for the pusher member 152, while the heavy fibrous sub-base 102 takes up shocks of the solenoid operation.
Operation of the device will doubtless be apparent. With -the access cover or lid 84 removed, the operator of the mechanism deposits a suitable number of tablets 124 in the magazine 114. Subsequently, when a customer drops a coin in the slot 12 on the washing machine or other device, closure of the switch 18 by the coin causes the solenoid 24 to be energized momentarily. This pulls the plunger 130 in and advances the pusher 152, whereupon the expelling member 150 thereof pushes the bottom tablet 124 from the stack out through the opening 122 land slot 150 into the catcher or receptacle 52 for manual removal by the customer. It is apparent that the switch 18 remains closed only for a short time, and that the solenoid is practically immediately deenergized, whereupon the solenoid plunger 130 and pusher 152 are retracted by the helical spring 162.
The specic example of the invention as herein set forth is lby way of illustration only, and changes in structure which may occur those skilled in the art will be understood as forming a part of the present invention insofar as they fall within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.
The invention is claimed as follows:
1. A dispenser for credit tokens and the like comprising a base, a vertically elongated magazine mounted on said base and upstanding therefrom for holding credit tokens or the like in a stack, said base having a horizontal slide surface, and said magazine having openings therethrough on opposite sides and substantially on a level with said slide surface, a pusher having a rest position and an advanced dispensing position, said pusher being L-shaped and having a substantially horizontal lbody slidable across said slide surface and having a leg upstanding from said body in substantially parallel spaced relation to said magazine, a solenoid mounted from said Ibase between said magazine and said pusher leg, means interconnecting said solenoid and :said pusher leg and providingr a spring anchor on the side of said leg opposite said solenoid, spring anchor means mounted from said base, and a spring extending between said spring anchor and said opening `anchor means and resiliently holding said pusher in rest position, said solenoid upon energization -thereof moving said pusher against said spring to said advanced position with said ybody projecting into said magazine through one of said openings therein and ejecting a token or the like through the opposite opening.
2. A dispenser `as set forth in claim 1 wherein the upstanding pusher leg has an aperture therein, and wherein the means interconnecting the solenoid and the pusher leg comprises a member xed to said solenoid and projecting through said aperture, said spring anchor bein-g secured to said member on the portion thereof projecting through said aperture.
3. A dispenser as set forth in claim 1 wherein the :spring anchor means mounted from said base is at a lower elevation than the spring anchor, said spring 'being a helical spring disposed diagonally relative to said slide surface and resiliently holding said pusher down against said surface as Well as in rest position.
4. A dispenser as set forth in claim 1 wherein the base has a substantially horizontal projection thereon, said magazine being of rectangular cross section having two sidewalls with said openings therein and further having a pair of sidewalls disposed substantially at right angles to the first-mentioned sidewalls and depending 'below said slide surface along opposite sides of said projection and served thereto to mount said magazine.
5. A dispenser as set forth in claim 1 wherein the base comprises a relatively thick sub-base of brous material with a relatively thin plastic laminate bonded thereto and forming the slide surface.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS ROBERT B. REEVES, Primary Examiner.
WALTER SOBIN, Examiner.