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Publication numberUS3329983 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 11, 1967
Filing dateAug 20, 1965
Priority dateAug 20, 1965
Publication numberUS 3329983 A, US 3329983A, US-A-3329983, US3329983 A, US3329983A
InventorsClamp Melvin
Original AssigneeBoston Mass, United Shoe Machinery Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Methods of manufacturing shoe uppers
US 3329983 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

July 1 1, 1967 M C MP METHODS OF MANUFACTURING SHOE UPPERS 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Aug. 20, 1965 Inventor: Me/l/z n C/amp j his 461cm? July 11, 1967 M. CLAMP 3,329,983

METHODS OF MANUFACTURING SHOE UPPERS Filed Aug; 1 20, 1965 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 United States Patent 3,329,983 METHODS OF MANUFACTURING SHOE UPPERS Melvin Clamp, North Andover, Mass., assignor to United Shoe Machinery Corporation, Flemington, N.J., and Boston, Mass., a corporation of New Jersey Filed Aug. 20, 1965, Ser. No. 481,224 8 Claims. (Cl. 12-146) This invention relates to a novel method of manufacturing composite articles and, more specifically, to a unique method of assembling shoe uppers. The method is particularly advantageous in the manufacture of shoe uppers having a complex design and comprising a plurality of components.

In the normal shoemaking process, shoe uppers are assembled in the fitting room by highly skilled artisans working independently on costly sewing machines. The various components which constitute a finished shoe upper are laboriously sewn together in much the same fashion as they were at the inception of modern shoemaking. The sophistication of the sewing machines employed has markedly increased 'but the methods remain essentially stagnant. As a consequence, the'fitting room represents an area which has heretofore defied the shoemaking industrys quest for automation.

The technological evolution in the shoemaking industry sparked by the development and increased use of adhesives has, for a considerable number of years, suggested a potential solution to the fitting room dilemma. That is, the need for costly sewing machines which require highly skilled artisans possibly could be obviated by replacement of the stitched seam with a bonded seam. Further, whereas the stitched seam effectively precluded automation in the fitting room, an adhesively bonded seam is not hampered by the need to employ a number of independent machines similar to the sewing machine. However, the implementation of this suggested solution has heretofore eluded the industry as a result of an inability to provide methods which facilitate automated manufacture of shoe uppers in which the various components are secured together by adhesive.

Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide an automated method of manufacturing shoe uppers.

To this end and in accordance with a feature of the present invention, there is provided a method of manufacturing shoe uppers having a plurality of components comprising printing the outline of a shoe upper and the components thereof on a continuous web, applying adhesive to said web within the outline of said shoe upper, locating components of the shoe upper in the appropriate position within said outline with adhesively coated marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship, activating the adhesive on said overlapping marginal portion and the adhesive on said web whereby to effect union between said components and between the web and the components, and removing the united upper from said web by severing the portion of the web over- .laid by said upper components from the web.

The above and other features of the invention, including various novel method steps, will now be more particularly described with reference to the accompanying drawings and pointed out in the claims. It will be understood that the process embodying the invention is described by way of illustration and not as a limitation of the invention. The principles and features of this invention may be utilized in various and numerous embodiments and applications without departing from the scope of the invention.

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a schematic illustration of a shoe upper assembly line embodying the subject invention;

Patented July 11, 1967 FIG. 2 is a plan view of a portion of a partially assembled shoe upper made in accordance with the subject invention;

FIG. 3 is a plan view of a shoe upper made in accordance with the subject invention prior to removal from the conveyor Web;

FIG. 4 is an exploded plan view of the upper components which comprise the shoe upper used to illustrate the subject invention; and

FIG. 5 is a perspective view with portions exploded illustrating a shoe upper in various stages of assembly.

The method of the subject invention is particularly adapted for use in the manufacture of shoe uppers which comprise a plurality of leather components having a resin finish such as described in the application of Emerson B. Hovey for Letters Patent of the United States, Ser. No. 413,338, filed Nov. 23, 1964. Leather upper components finished in accordance with the teachings of the referenced application readily may be bonded to each other without the use of additional adhesive. That is, the adhesive characteristics of the finish permit the direct attachment of such upper components by the proper application of pressure and heat without the need to prepare the surfaces to be bonded. Accordingly, the description of the subject invention to follow will be with reference to the manufacture of shoe uppers utilizing the advanced technology delineated in the referenced application. It is to be clearly understood, however, that the invention is equally applicable to the manufacture of shoe uppers wherein the upper components must be prepared and/ or coated with an appropriate adhesive in the portions to #be secured together.

As illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 5, a component shoe upper is assembled in accordance with the subject invention by the performance of a plurality of operations on a web 10. In the preferred embodiment shown in FIG. 1, portions of the web 10 are cut out and removed as the final operation to form the lining of a finished shoe upper made in accordance with this invention. That is, lining material is extruded from an extruder 12 to form the web 10; the various operations are performed thereon; and the surplus lining material is wound about a take-up roll 16 in Web form after the completed upper including the lining has been cut out and removed therefrom. The lining material or web 10 is progressed step-by-step past the vari ous operating stations by intermittent rotary movement imparted to the take-up roll 16 by any convenient means (not shown). The sequence of operations to be described is performed when the web 10 is stationary, i.e. between the intervals of movement. Alternatively, the extruder 12 may be replaced 'by a supply roll (not shown) of previously prepared lining material. When it is desired to make shoe uppers without linings, less expensive material such as paper may be employed to form the web 10 and the material removed after the upper is formed. Similarly, the Web 10 may be formed of a material having characteristics which permit its use as reinforcing in a finished shoe upper.

In the preferred embodiment illustrated in FIG. 1, the thickness of the extruded web 10 of lining material is adjusted by cooperating calender rolls 20, 20 which engage the extruded web irnmediately after its emergence from the extruder 12. This operation may be eliminated when a supply roll is employed as suggested above.

As stated above, the method of the subject invention is particularly valuable in the manufacture of shoe uppers having a complex design involving a plurality of discrete components. The discussion to follow will be with specific reference to the design shown in FIG. 3. This design has been selected arbitrarily as it is relatively complex and facilitates illustration of the outstanding advantages of the subject invention. It is to be adhesive is applied to the clearly understood, however, that the invention is not limited to the manufacture of shoe uppers of any specific design.

After the thickness of the web 10 has been adjusted by the calender rolls 20, 20, the outline of the shoe upper to be manufactured is printed on the web 10 at a marking station 24. The indicia or markings printed on the web 10 for the design illustrated in'FIG. 3 are shown at A in FIG. 5 and include in addition to the outline of the entire upper an outline of each of the components of the upper and an identifying number associated therewith.

The web is next advanced to a station 30 wherein area within the outline of the shoe upper as illustrated at B in FIG. 5. The configuration of the adhesive applying means is such as to include uppers in a wide range of sizes. That is, although the configuration of various components of different shoe upper designs varies, the basic outline of most shoeuppers is the same. Accordingly, adhesive may be applied to accommodate various designs and a range of sizes, by applying an amount of adhesive sufficient to permit manufacture of the largest shoe upper size in a given size range.

Succeeding stations 32, 34 and 36 sequentially apply a printed on counter (see C FIG. 5), a printed on box 'toe (see D FIG. 5), and a printed on throat stay and spot reinforcing (see E FIG. 5), respectively. That is, a viscous molten'thermoplastic synthetic polymeric material is applied in the appropriate areas of the shoe upper as indicated in the sequential views of FIG. 5. This material is subsequentially stiffened in a three-dimensional configuration in a manner similar to that described in application for Letters Patent of the United States, Ser. No. 338,705, filed Jan. 20, 1964, in the names of Adolph Chaplick et al.

The web 10 thereafter passes through a heat tunnel '38 wherein the adhesive applied at the station 30 is activated to ensure sufiicient tack to' permit performance of the succeeding operation, as hereinafter described. The heat tunnel 38 may be of any conventional design.

As most clearly shown in FIG. 4, the shoe upper design which has been arbitrarily selected to illustrate the methodof the subject invention includes six components. These components are identified as I, II, III, IV and V and VI in FIG. 4. The identifying number associated with each of the components is marked on the component as shown in FIG. .4 and also on the outline of the upper printed on the web 10, as discussed above. After the web 10 emerges from the heat tunnel, it passes before a number of operators who position the upper components in location on the web by matching the identifying numbers on the components with those on the web 10. In the embodiment shown inFIG. 4, three operators are used, each operator being required to locate three components. The components are located on the web in chrono- V logical order with abutting surfaces in overlapping marginal relationship, as shown in FIG. 2. The components are temporarily held in position by the adhesive applied at the station 30 and activated at the station 38. V

The web 10 with the upper components I to VI located thereon is next advanced to an activating station 50'wherein the adhesive applied to the web 10 at the station 30 and the resin finish on the overlapping margins of the upper components are activated to effect union between the web and upper'components. Activation of the adhesive and resin finish is accomplished by positioning the web 10 and upper components thereon between electrode-plates 52, 54 whereby to create a high frequency field thereacross. The Web and upper components are simultaneously pressed into pressure applying engagement by theplates 52, 54 to ensure that continuous bonding is attained between the overlapping portions of the upper components and between the upper components and the web. The plates 52, 54 may be moved mto and out of operative position by any convenient,

conventional means. The activated adhesive and finish are thereafter allowed to set to' provide a completely united shoe upper. This operation is equally applicable where the overlapping marginal portions of the upper components do not have a resin finish as described above but have adhesive appliedthereto in a separate operation.

The completed shoe upper is severed out of the web 10 at station 60 by a cutting press comprising .an upper cutting member 62 and a table 64. As noted above, a portion of the web 10 is removed and forms the lining 70 (FIG. 5) of the finished upper. The completed uppers are then fed into storage containers in conventional manner and the remainder of the web wound about the take up roll 16. r

In practice of the preferred embodiment of this in= vention, a web of lining stock is intermittently progressed past a plurality of operating stations. An outline of a shoe upper including its component parts is printed on the web and adhesive applied within the outline. A counter, box toe, and throat stay and spot reinforcing are then applied at the appropriate locations within the outline. The web then passes through a heat tunnel after which the upper components are placed in position on the web with juxtapositioned marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship. Adhesive on the upper components and on the web is thereafter activated and pressure applied to the assembly whereby to unite the components and web. The adhered upper is removed from the web by cutting the web in the portion overlaid by the upper components.

Having thus described my invention, what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patentof the United States is:

1. A method of manufacturing shoe uppers having a plurality of components com-prising applying adhesive 'to a continuous web Within an area defining the outline of a shoe upper, locating components of the shoe upper on the web within the outline with adhesively coated marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship, activating the adhesive on said overlapping marginal portion and the adhesive on said web whereby to effect union between said components and between the web and the components, andremoving the united upper from said web by severing the portion of the web overlaid by said upper components from the web.

2. A method of manufacturing shoe uppers having a plurality of components comprising progressively moving a continuous web past a plurality of operating stations sequentially wherein adhesive is applied to the web within an area defining the outline of a shoe upper, components of the shoe upper are located on the web within the outline with adhesively coated marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship, adhesive is activated on said web whereby to unite said components and said web, and the united shoe upper is removed f-romthe continuous web by severing the portion of the web overlaid by said upper components from the web.

3. A method of manufacturing shoe uppers having a plurality ofcomponents comprising printing the outline of a shoe upper on a continuous web, applying adhesive to said web within the outline of said shoe upper, locating components of the shoe upper in the appropriate position within said outline with adhesively' coated marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship, activating the adhesive on said ove'rlapping marginal portion and the adhesive on said web whereby to eifectunion pluralityof. components comprising progressing a .con-

tinuous web along a line of operation, applying adhesive to the web within an area defining the outline of a shoe upper, applying a printed on counter and box toe at the appropriate location within said outline, locating components of the shoe upper on the web within the outline with adhesively coated marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship, activating the adhesive on said overlapping marginal portion and the adhesive on said web whereby to effect union between said components and between the web and the components, and removing the united upper from said web by severing the portion of the web overlaid by said upper components from the web.

5. A method of manufacturing shoe uppers having a plurality of components comprising progressing a con tinuous web along a line of operation, applying adhesive to the web within an area defining the outline of a shoe upper, locating components of the shoe upper on the web within the outline with adhesively coated marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship, activating the adhesive on said overlapping marginal portion and the adhesive on said web by exposure to high frequency oscillations and simultaneously pressing the web and upper components into pressure exerting engagement whereby to effect union between said components and between the web and the components, and removing the united upper from the web by severing the web along the perimeter of said outline.

6. A method of manufacturing shoe uppers having a plurality of components comprising progressing a continuous web along a line of operation, printing the outline of a shoe upper on said web, applying adhesive to the web within said shoe upper outline, locating components of the shoe upper on the web within the outline with adhesively coated marginal portions of the component in overlapping relationship, activating the adhesive on said overlapping marginal portions and adhesive on said web whereby to effect union between said components and between the web and components, and removing the united upper from said web by severing the portion of the web overlaid by said upper components from the web.

7. A method of manufacturing shoe uppers having a plurality of components comprising printing the outline of a shoe upper and the components thereof on a continuous web, applying adhesive to the web within the area defined by the outline of the shoe upper, locating components of the shoe upper on the web within the outline with adhesively coated marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship, activating the adhesive on said overlapping marginal portions and the adhesive on said web whereby to effect union between said components and between the Web and components, and removing the united upper from said web by severing the portion of the web overlaid by said upper components from the web.

8. A method of manufacturing shoe uppers having a plurality of components in which a continuous web is progressed past a plurality of operating stations sequentially wherein the outline of the shoe upper and the components thereof is printed on the web, adhesive is applied to the web within an area defined by the outline of the shoe upper, components of the shoe upper are located on the web within the outline with adhesively coated marginal portions of the components in overlapping relationship, adhesive is activated on said overlapping marginal portions and on said web whereby to effect union between said components and between the web and the components, and the united upper is removed from the continuous web by severing the portion of the web overlaid by said upper components from the web.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,825,379 9/1931 Zonino 12-146 2,006,071 6/1935 Edwards 12-52 2,190,864 2/ 1940 Dawes 12146 PATRICK D. LAWSON, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1825379 *Mar 7, 1931Sep 29, 1931Goodyear S India Rubber GloveMethod of assembling rubber footwear elements
US2006071 *Jul 6, 1931Jun 25, 1935Herbert E EdwardsAssembling machine
US2190864 *Nov 23, 1937Feb 20, 1940Dawes Robert TFootwear
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3388412 *Dec 2, 1966Jun 18, 1968United Shoe Machinery CorpMethod and apparatus for assembling multi-part workpieces
US3461473 *May 31, 1967Aug 19, 1969Fortuna Werke Maschf AgMethod for treating articles of leather
US3739414 *Nov 23, 1971Jun 19, 1973Shoe & Allied Trades Res AssShoe manufacture
US5343638 *Aug 23, 1993Sep 6, 1994Reebok International Ltd.Upper for an athletic shoe and method for manufacturing the same
US6299962Jul 16, 1999Oct 9, 2001Reebok International Ltd.Article of footwear
US6533885Aug 3, 2001Mar 18, 2003Reebok International Ltd.Apparatus and method for manufacturing a shoe upper
US6557274Apr 13, 2001May 6, 2003Paul E. LitchfieldAthletic shoe construction
US7622014Jul 1, 2005Nov 24, 2009Reebok International Ltd.Method for manufacturing inflatable footwear or bladders for use in inflatable articles
US8540838Nov 23, 2009Sep 24, 2013Reebok International LimitedMethod for manufacturing inflatable footwear or bladders for use in inflatable articles
US8572786Oct 12, 2010Nov 5, 2013Reebok International LimitedMethod for manufacturing inflatable bladders for use in footwear and other articles of manufacture
US8701232 *Sep 5, 2013Apr 22, 2014Nike, Inc.Method of forming an article of footwear incorporating a trimmed knitted upper
EP2862467A1 *Oct 9, 2014Apr 22, 2015Adidas AGSpeedfactory 2D
Classifications
U.S. Classification12/146.00C
International ClassificationA43D25/18, A43B23/02, A43D11/00
Cooperative ClassificationA43D25/18, A43D11/00, A43B23/02
European ClassificationA43D25/18, A43D11/00, A43B23/02