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Publication numberUS3350834 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 7, 1967
Filing dateDec 12, 1961
Priority dateDec 12, 1961
Publication numberUS 3350834 A, US 3350834A, US-A-3350834, US3350834 A, US3350834A
InventorsHeywood Vincent E, Johnson Albert H
Original AssigneeUs Envelope Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
High-speed banding of envelopes and the like
US 3350834 A
Abstract  available in
Images(7)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Nov. 7, 1967 v. E. HEYwooD ETAL 3,350,834

HIGH-SPEED BANDING OF' ENVELOPES AND THE LIKE Original Filed Dec. l, 1958 '7 Sheets-Sheet l Vmc 12H5'. Heywood Albert H, 1172.507? f7 M7 Atov-zy Nov. 7, 1967 v. E. HEYwooD ETAL 3,350,834

HIGH-SFEED BANDING OF ENVELOPES AND THE LIKE original Filed Dec. 1, 195e y 7 Shees-Sheet Z f f w., N

/Z'Tzcen Ef Hey wood i A Meri' H. Johnson Nov. 7, 1967 v, E, HEYWOOD ETAL 3,350,834

` HIGH-SPEED BANDING 0F ENVELOPES AND THE LIKE Original Filed Dec. l, 1958 7 Sheets-Sheet 3 jhm-:722513 I/ncen EHeywood Alberi 11h/11725071 MZM% my Nov. 7, 1967 v. E. HEYwooD ETAL 3,350,834

` HIGH-SPEED BANDING OF ENVELOPES AND THE LIKE original Filed Dec. 1, 195e '7 shams-sheet 4 Aluer H Johnson Harney NOV- 7, 1967 v. E. HEYwooD ETAL 3,350,834

I HIGH-SPEED BANDING OF ENVELOPES AND THE LIKE Original Filed Dec. l, 1958 '7 Shees-Sheet 5 Nov. 7, 1967 v. E. Hl-:YwcoD ETAL 3,350,334

HIGH-SPEED BANDING OF-ENVELOPES AND THE LIKE 7 Sheets-Sheet G Original Filed Dec.

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EZHeywood Evi Nov. 7, 1967 v. E. HEYWooD ETA. l 3,350,834

HIGH-SPEED BANDING OF ENVEIJOPES AND THE LIKE Original Filed Dec. l. 1958 7 .Sheets-Sheet 7 o o o g o In N n 63 m m (n 5: Q

' 3 Jzrzfam: Vzzcen Effe/#0007 flerl HJOHYZSO" United States Patent O 3,356,334 HIGH-SPEED BANDING F ENVELOPES AND THE LIKE Vincent E. Heywood, Worcester, Mass., and Albert H. Johnson, Hazardville, Conn., assgnors to United States Envelope Company, Springfield, Mass., a corporation of Maine Continuation of application Ser. No. 777,337, Dec. 1, 1958. This application Dec. 12, 1961, Ser. No. 164,637

48 Claims. (Cl. 53-3) This application is a continuation of our copending joint application Serial No. 777,337, filed Dec. l, 1958, now abandoned, for a High-Speed Banding Machine, which case was in turn a continuation-in-part of our copending joint application Serial No. 457,268, iiled Sept. 20, 1954, now abandoned, on the same subject matter.

Our invention relates to high speed banding of envelopes and similar fiat articles. This involves progressively assembling the envelopes, as fast as -produced and delivered, in successive packs of preselected number or size, and wrapping or folding about each pack a narrow paper or like band, whose overlapped ends must be pressed and held together in close adhesive-sticking contact.

Por retail merchandising purposes, great numbers of envelopes, of various sizes and types, are supplied in factory-banded packs. For banded high-number packs (containing 25 to 50 or more envelopes) there is a steady but relatively-moderate demand. But there is a great and ever-growing demand for banded low-number packs (containing from 4 or 5 to 8 or l0 envelopes) as Well as for banded medium-number packs (containing from a dozen to about 20 envelopes). Vast quantities of envelopes must be factory-banded in these small size and medium size packs, to meet the needs of millions of small-lot purchasers, in chain and/or variety stores, as well as in countless retail outlets for greeting cards, and similar establishments.

Mechanical banding of envelopes is old and well known in the art. It has long been common practice iu envelope factories for the entire out-put of a given envelope-making machine to be delivered directly, as fast as produced, to known counting, pack collecting and band applying mechanisms-for progressive conversion by the latter into a series of banded packs, of preselected number or size. But under present-day conditions of high-speed envelope manufacture, none of these prior mechanical banders can ever be used, except for the collection and banding of high-number or yhigh-count packs. That is, in modern envelope factories which possess such known mechanical banding equipment, all low-number packs and practically all medium-number packs have had to be banded by hand. This is because no such prior mechanical bander, when its counting mechanism is preset for recurrent collections of these small-number or medium-number packs, can ever keepy pace, in its intricate and time-consuming band applying and band end sticking operations, with the very high envelope production rate of any modern envelope-making machine that delivers directly to such a bander.

Production rates of 300 and even more envelopes per minute are regularly attained by conventional modern envelope-making machines. With envelopes being delivered for banding at this high rate (5 or 6 per second), every low-number pack, and practically every mediumnumber pack would be collected and in urgent need of being banded, in less time than it takes for any such mechanical bander of the prior art to complete its band folding and band end sticking operations on the preceding pack. Thus in any such prior machine, there is virtually no place for any such quickly-collected pack to go, since the machines banding station would still be occupied by the preceding pack. It goes without saying that none of these mechanical banders of the prior art can ever hope to keep pace, even for the banding of large or highnumber packs, with the far-higher rates of envelope production (of the order of SOD-1200 envelopes per minute) that are readily achievable with Various special methods and means of envelope manufacture, as disclosed respectively in Heywood Patents Nos. 2,772,611 and 2,851,934, and in Kennedy Patent No. 2,811,905.

In many of the known mechanical banders of the prior art an initial partial folding of band material onto each collected pack is obtained, merely by giving to said pack (by suitable pushers or the like) a single limited translatory movement. In this practice (as exemplified by the patents of Hunt No. 1,653,908, Becker No. 1,687,488 and Heywood No. 1,839,513) this single short movement obtains the packs front face pick-up and transport of an adhesive-tipped band length disposed across the pack path, such that oppositely extending portions of the somoved band, from encounter with opposed stationary surfaces closely flanking said path, are folded back across opposite leading edges of the pack.

However, in all such and similar prior art banders, this usual pack-and-band movement (itself of brief duration) has always had to be followed by :a series of timeconsuming motions and counter-motions of various other devices. These subsequently operated other devices have included various types of folding, pressing and holding devices, for action on the trailing ends of the band, as well as other pushers or equivalent means for again moving the pack itself, to get it out of the way of the next pack. Sequential to and fro movements of various such devices have usually been needed, first for the performance of their functions, and then to get them out of the way of the next packs band pick-up movement.

The considerable amount of the time consumed by all such subsequent motions and counter-motions is usually of little consequence, when these prior machines are used for the banding of high-number packs. This is because the several seconds normally required for the collection of any high-number paok gives sufficient time for all such motions and counter-motions, in the banding and evacuation of the preceding pack, to be performed. But under modern conditions of high speed envelope manufacture, all small or low-number packs and most medium-number packs are always so quickly collected that they never give this margin or leeway for the performance, in such a machine, of these subsequent folding pressing and evacuating operations on the preceding pack. yIt is this factor, more than anything else, which has precluded any use of the above and similarly organized prior mechanical banders, in the small and medium pack banding of envelopes, as continuously delivered from conventional modern envelope-making equipment.

Our invention provides a simple but highly effective solution of this high speed banding problem.

According to our invention, each packs single brief movement (which frontally folds the picked-up band) is itself used, rst for the Icreation and then for the release of opposed pent-up lateral forces (preferably spring forces) against the respective trailing ends of the frontally folded band. These forces, just as each pack is coming to rest, deflect both of its band ends inwardly, on transverse fold lines defined by opposite rear edges of the pack, into an overlapped but unstuck relation behind the packs rear face.

By so conditioning each pack and leaving it in the line of pack movement, our invention dispenses with all need for any of the usual post-movement actuations and withdrawals of band end folding, pressing and pack evacuating devices, that have always consumed so much time in prior banding mechanisms of this type. It secures the performance of all of these functions, without any expenditures of time, by the successive band pick-up movements of the next following packs. That is, the final stages of these movements, in displacing and slightly advancing the preceding so-conditioned packs, are all that is needed to press and hold the latters already overlapped band ends in prolonge-d close adhesive-sticking contact with one another.

Our invention thus provides a banding method and apparatus in which, for band end folding and pressing, and for each packs evacuation of the banding station, no expenditures of time, over and above those involved in the customary brief band pick-up movements of the successive packs, are ever required.

In other words, our invention establishes for every pack, regardless of size, a banding cycle of minimal split-second duration. This duration is merely the time (less than 1A of a second) that it takes for any suitable quick-acting pusher devices to give a pack its short band pick-up movement and then get back into pushing position for the next pack.

By virtue of this drastically reduced banding cycle time (well under the normal collection time of the very smallest of packs) our invention makes possible, for the first, the mechanical small-pack banding of envelopes, as fast as the latter are ever delivered by any conventional high production, envelope making machine. As a matter of fact, our invention, for all ordinary or average small-pack banding, has no difficulty at all in coping and keeping pace, even with the phenomenally high rates of envelope production that are attainable, as aforesaid by the respective inventions of Heywood Patents Nos. 2,772,611 and 2,851,934 and of Kennedy Patent No. 2,811,905.

For the better and more simplified achievement of these outstanding results, our invention as herein shown, collects the rapidly delivered envelopes of every pack in substantially upright edgewise supported condition, and holds them in this condition throughout the ensuing operation that obtains their banding. This allows the adhesive-tipped length of Iband material which each so-moved pack picks up, to hand down by gravity across the pack path, and thereby dispenses with any need for either the conveyance or the guidance of said band material to the position requiredA for its pick-up.

Also, according to our invention, each packs movement from the collecting station is effected by special pusher devices which are travelling at maximum forward speed as they engage the packs rear face. This insures the packs and their own prompt clearance of the collecting station, in the absence of any interference with the closely following delivery to said station of the next packs first envelope. But this extremely high speed of our pack pushers has no adverse effect, but impact or otherwise, on any so-moved pack. This is because our pack pushers are substantially upright posts, which preserve their parallelism with each packs rear face by virtue of being actuated by a parallel motion driving means.

Other and further objects, advantages and novel features of our invention will become apparent from the following detailed description thereof, taken in connection with the accompanying illustrative drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a front elevational view, partly in vertical section, showing banding apparatus in accordance with our invention, in association with suitable devices at the left-hand end of said figure, by which completed envelopes are rapidly delivered to the pack-collecting station of said apparatus.

FIG. 2 is a plan view of lower portions of the banding apparatus shown in FIG. 1, including its drive mechanism.

FIG. 3 is a transverse vertical sectional view of our banding apparatus and its driving devices, substantially in the plane of the section line 3 3 of FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary view illustrating the superior action of the parallel motion pushing devices which impart to each envelope pack, as soon as collected, its single short band pick-up and band folding movement.

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary View, partly in section, illustrating the mechanism which severs each band length and applies adhesive to its upper end.

FIG. 6 is a plan view of the mechanism shown by FIG. 5.

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary view of the band web feeding mechanism and the band length adjusting mechanism as seen from the rear of our envelope banding apparatus.

FIG. 8 is a large scale perspective view of one of a pair of opposed members, spring biased into the pack path, which are triggered sequentially by each packs single short band pick-up movement, to deflect both band ends inwardly, into overlapped but unstuck relation behind the packs rear face.

FIGS. 9, 10, 11 and 12 are a series of diagrammatic views, illustrating in sequence the four transverse folding operations performed on each pick-up band length at successive stages of the single short movement imparted to each pack.

FIG. 13 is a perspective view of one of the banded packs of envelopes produced by our invention.

FIG. 14 is a top plan view of the band web feeding mechanism.

FIG 15 is a transverse vertical sectional view substantially in the plane of section line 15-15 of FIG. 1.

Like reference characters refer to like parts in the dif ferent figures.

The left-hand ends of FIGS. 1 and 2 show, for suc-r cessively arriving completed envelopes E, E, a stacking delivery mechanism of the type disclosed by Heywood Patent No. 2,612,088. The essential elements of this envelope stacking mechanism include, as shown, three parallel-spaced-apart wheels 1, 1, whose rims are formed with matching sets of ats or lands 2, 2 spaced 120 apart. The three wheels 1, 1 have a common hollow hub 3, whose several spokes 4, 4 (three for each wheel) provide fulllength radial passages 5, 5. Each radial passage 5 opens at its outer end to one of the lands or flats 2, 2 and at its inner end to the bore of the hub 3.

Said hub 3 is mounted for clockwise rotation upon a` stationary hollow conduit 6, whose interior is in constant communication with any suitable source of suction (not shown). Inwardly of the hubs ends, the outer surface of conduit 6 is cut away or relieved, to provide an arcuate chamber 7, substantially coeXtensive with the upper half of the hubs rotary movement about said stationary conduit 6. This chamber 7, closed at both ends, is subject to the suction or vacuum of conduit 6, through suitable ports 8, 8 connecting said chamber with said conduits interior.

As described in the aforesaid Heywood Patent No. 2,612,088, the arrangement and timing is such that each of the completed envelopes E, E, as projected upwardly by the final seal flap folding rolls (not shown) of said patent, will always meet up with a row of the wheel ats 2, 2. Thereon each envelope is seized and held by the suction exerted through the associated passages S, 5 for as long as the latters inner ends, in the clockwise rotation of hub 3, are passing along the arcuate vacuum space or chamber 7. This condition prevails, as will be seen in FIG. 1, until shortly before each so-conveyed envelopes leading edge (here the fold of its seal flap) reaches the upper rear end surface of an elongated substantially horizontal plate 9, the latter being an essential part of our novel banding apparatus. At this point (as described in the aforesaid Heywood Patent No. 2,612,088) the suction to the inner ends of the associated suction passages 5, 5 is cut off, thus freeing each envelope for its desired deposit, edgewise, upon the rear end of plate 9 The latters interception of each wheel-conveyed envelope is assured, by its pair of narrow rearward projections 9', 9 which (see FIG. 2) extend between the wheels 1, 1, and carry adjustable upright guards 9a, 9a. Thus each envelope, as delivered edgewise against plate 9, is effectively stripped from said wheels.

The successive edgewise supported envelopes accumulate, one behind the other, on the rear end of supporting o plate 9 with their opposite upper edges slightly spaced from the inner surface of a companion parallel upper guide plate 10. The two plates 9 and 10 (supported independently as hereinafter described) provide suitable means, near their rear ends, for holding the so-accumulating envelopes substantially upright. As best shown in FIG. l, the rear end of support plate 9 has secured to its under side a depending bracket 11, to which is pivoted at 12 a block 13. The latters front face has secured thereto a resilient spring linger 14 that projects upwardly through an elongated substantially rectangular opening 15 of the plate 9 (see FIG. 2). This spring finger 14 is biased rearwardly, toward the guards 9a, 9a and the peripheries of the envelope delivery wheels 1, 1 by the pull on block 13 of a relatively light coil spring 16, that extends between a pin 17 on said block and a pin 18 projecting downwardly from plate 9.

The guide plate has an elongated rectangular opening of the same width as, but slightly longer than the opening 15 of support plate 9. Projecting downwardly through the rear end of this guide plate opening is a spring finger 19 whose upper end is suitably secured to a block 2li. The latter is pivoted at 21 to a bracket 22 that is mounted for limited longitudinal adjustment, upon the rear end of guide plate 1G by a retaining bolt 23 which is received in an elongated slot 24 of said guide plate. This adjustment allows spring linger 19 to be set in an optimum position, for the selected size or thickness of the envelope packs, which, as hereinafter described, are successively collected (as shown at P in FIG. 1) between the rear ends of plates 9 and 10. This upper spring linger 19 is biased rearwardly about pivot 21 toward the guards 9a, 9a and the delivery wheels 1, 1 by the pull on block 20 of a light coil spring 25, This spring 25 is connected at one end to an arm 26 on block 20; its other end can be connected to any stationary suitably located part of our apparatus, and is here shown as connected to the casing of an electronic counter 27, to be hereinafter referred to.

It will be clear from the foregoing that these spring biased ngers 14 and 19 insure an orderly upright accumulation, one behind the other, of the envelopes successively deposited edgewise by delivery wheels 1, 1 on the rear end of plate 9. Said lingers constitute at all times an effective restraint against the natural tendencies of the accumulating envelopes either to topple forwardly or to tilt backwardly- Moreover, for an appreciable part of the usual single short band pick-up movements imparted to each pack P, as soon as collected, said lingers 14 and 19, by their ability to pivot outwardly, maintain their contact with and control over the moving pack. Inasmuch as these fingers are mounted upon their respective plates 9 and 10, their effectiveness is in no way diminished when these plates undergo relative vertical adjustments, in order to accommodate their spacing to the collection and banding of envelopes which differ in their height dimensions from the envelopes E, E that are shown by FIGS. 1, 2 and 3.

For purposes of this spacing adjustment, we prefer to maintain the upper or guide plate 1t) at a fixed level and to change, as required, the level of the lower support plate 9. As shown in FIGS. 1 and 15, the upper plate 10 is rigidly attached by bolts or the like (not shown) to the under side of a switch box 28. This switch box is in turn permanently secured to a frontwardly overhanging portion 29 of an upright supporting standard 30. The lower end of standar-d 30 (see FIGS. l and 2) is rigidly bolted to a flat base 31 of our envelope banding apparatus, behind the forward ends of the opposed apertured plates 9 and 10. The upper portions of this standard 30 support, as hereinafter described, devices for intermittently feeding a ban-d material web B, such that its leading pendent end passes doward freely through the matching apertures 15 and 15 of plates 9 and 10, acrossthe path of each envelope pack P that is advanced between said plates. This standard 30 also supports other d devices (see FIG. 5) which are operative on the webs depending portion to sever therefrom and to spot or top with glue, the band lengths that are picked up and transported by the successive packs of envelopes P, P.

An adjustable or level-changing support for our lower apertured plate 9 is provided (see FIG.. 3) by a hollow pedestal 32 which is bolted to the base 31 directly below said plates forward end. The pedestal 32 has upright upper and lower coaxial bore sections 33 and 33 which receive a post 34. Said post 34 provides an external screw thread 35 with which meshes the internal screw threads of a nut 36. The latter occupies the space within said pedestal between its upper bore section 33 and its lower bore section 33. Said nut is formed with a collar 37 havin-g its rim knurled, as shown, to facilitate manual turning of said nut, for the raising or lowering, as desited, of the post 34.

A cross bar 38 is secured, as by a suitable bolt 38', to the upper shouldered end of post 34. This cross bar 38 underlies, and has rigidly secured thereto (as by the sub-surface screws 39, 39, FIG. 2) the forward end of our apertured support plate 9, and also the forward ends of a pair of support rails 4t), 4l) that are equally spaced from opposite sides of said plate. The upper surfaces of these rails 40, 40 are co-planar, and substantially coextensive longitudinally, with the upper envelope supporting surface of plate 9. Thus it is that relatively long (or wide) envelopes, as well as those of average or less length (or width) are all afforded adequate edgewise support. This applies and holds true, not only during said envelopes upright collection, as above described, at the pack assembly station adjacent to delivery wheels 1, 1, but also during their transport, in upright pack form, along plate 9, to and through the machines banding station, as hereinafter described.

Secured to and depending from one end of cross bar 38 is a vertical member 41. The member 41 is received, with appreciable clearance on each side, between a pair of spaced parallel ears 42, 42 that project outwardly from the pedstal 32. Extending through said ears 42, 42, into contact with opposite sides of member 41, are adjustable set screws 43, 43. These set screws are adapted to be moved in or out, in slight degree, in order by their pressure variations on member 41, to correct any slight out-of-level conditions that the plate 9 an-d rails 40, 40 may develop. Whenever it is desired to raise or lower said plate 9 and rail-s 40, 4i) for the reception and movement thereon of envelopes of less or greater height, these set screws 43, 43 are temporarily backed off, so that the desired change of level can be made by turning of the nut 36.

As shown in FIGS. l and 2, base 31 supports and has secured thereto an electric motor 44 whose shaft carries a small driving pulley 4S. This pulley transmits the motor shafts clockwise rotation (constant during the operation of our bandin-g apparatus) through a suitable belt or chain 46, to a large slower speed pulley 47. Pulley 47, as shown in FIG. 2, is secured to a hub or sleeve 48, which is mounted for free rotation on suitable bearings 49, 49. The constantly rotating hub 48 and its bearings 49, 49 are concentrically supported upon a transverse single-revolution shaft 50. That is to say, this shaft 5t) (by which our banding apparatus is driven) receives intermittent clockwise rotation from hub 48 in a succession of one-revolution steps. Each single revolution of shaft 50 is initiated, as hereinafter described, by the accumulation, at the pack collecting station provided by rear ends of plates 9 and 10 of the preselected number of envelopes that compose each pack P.

As shown in FIG. 3, the front end of shaft 50 extends through and is suitably journaled in an upright bracket 51 that rises from base 31. The other end of shaft 50 extends through and is suitably journaled in a second upright bracket 52 also rising from the base 31. Between bracket 52 and the constantly rotating pulley hub 48,

the shaft t) is equipped with an electric or magnetic clutch-brake unit 53 of standard (Warner) construction. A unit of this type, as well-known in the art, will establish, when energized, a clutch or driving connection between shaft 50 and the constantly rotating hub or sleeve 48 thereon, and will simultaneously release a brake that is holding said shaft stationary. When such a unit 53 is deenergized, the clutch is released, and simultaneously the brake is applied to the driven element (shaft 59) to prevent its over-run, by momentum, beyond the clutchrelease position.

An electric eye or photoelectric cell, shown symbolically at 54 in FIG. 1, is arranged to have its beam intercepted by each of the successive envelopes E, E that are delivered to our apparatus by the rotating` wheels 1, 1. The resulting successive impulses of cell 54 are sent, in conventional fashion, to the adjacent electronic counter 27, which may be any one of several standard types, all well known in the art. This electronic counter 27 is adjustable, in conventional fashion, so that it can be preset to respond to a selected number of such impulses. Such selected number in this case is the number of envelopes (five, six, or whatever selected quantity) that are required to go into each upright pack P that is collected, as above described, between the rear ends of plates 9 and 1t).

At each reception of this selected number of impulses from cell 54, the electronic counter 27 operates a suitable solenoid or switc-h (not shown) which in turn energizes the clutch-brake unit 53, to inaugurato clockwise rotation of shaft 50 from the constantly rotating hub or sleeve 48. However, at each such energization of clutchbr'ake unit 53, the shaft 50 makes only a single revolution; this is because said shaft 50 carries lat its inner end (see FIGS. 2 and 3) a single lobe cam 55, which at the completion of a single revolution of said shaft, strikes and momentarily opens an adjacent switch 56 in the electrical circuit (not shown) of the clutch-brake unit, electrical circuit (not shown) of the clutch-brake unit 53. The opening of switch 56 immediately de-energizes said clutch-brake unit, whose above described braking action brings shaft 50 to a stop or rest position, with the lobe of its cam 55 at a point 360 distant, in the direction of said shafts rotation, from the switch 56. At each such single revolution of shaft 5t), the completed pack P at the collecting station is rapidly ejected and advanced, between the plates 9 and 10 by our improved pushing devices, as will now be described.

Secured to shaft 5t), just in front of bracket 51 (see FIG. 3) is a gear 57. This gear 57 meshes with an idler gear 58 (see FIG. 1) that turns on a stub shaft 59 projecting from the front face of bracket 51. Idler gear 59, for the drive o-f a countershaft 69, meshes with a gear 61 thereon which corresponds in size to the gear 57 of a shaft 50. Thus the countershaft 60 rotates in the same direction, and at the same speed, as the shaft 50. Said countershaft 66 is suitably journaled in 'a gear housing 62, formed in part by bracket 51, that encloses the above described gearing. Both the shaft 5t? and the countershaft 60 extend through the front of this housing, and have secured to their front ends (see FIGS. 1, 4 and 5) the parallel equal length arms 63 and 64 respectively, that extend in the same direction.

Transverse pivot pins 65 and 66 journaled in the outer ends of arms 63 and 64, respectively, provide pivotal co-nnections with opposite ends of a parallel motion link 67 connecting the two arms 63 and 64. This link 67 is formed with integral co-planar downwardly convergent extensions 68 and 69 which, substantially at their meeting point, provide a frontwardly extending horizontal boss 70. Rigidly secured to this boss 7d is an elongated horizontal bar 71 that extends frontwardly (see FIG. 2) well beneath the lower plate 9, and at right angles thereto. Secured to said bar 71 are a matching pair of spaced parallel rearwardly extending arms 72, 72. These arms 72, as s-hown in FIG. 2, are spaced apart on bar 71 by slightly more than the width of the overlying pack supporting plate 9. At their rear ends, the arms 72, 72 provide vertically socketed enlargements 73, 73 which receive and support a matching pair of spaced pack-pushing members 74, 74 in the form of generally upright posts, which, being substantially parallel with each packs rear face, will preserve this relation, by virtue of their above-described parallel-motion drive from Ithe shafts 551 and 60.

In the stopped or rest position of the one-revolution shaft 50, the upper ends of these posts 74, 74 as shown in FIG. 1, are always slightly to the rear of any envelope pack P that is accumulating, as above described, between the rear ends of the plates 9 and 10. With every such packs completion, the immediately ensuing single revolution of shaft 59 obtains, by forward movement of said posts upper ends, the packs rapid ejection from the collection station, and its further forward movement between pl'ates 9 and l() for a relatively short distance. The arcuate parallel motion path taken by the upper ends of posts 74, 74 in so ejecting and advancing each pack is depicted graphically in FIG. 4. As there shown, said upper ends, as the posts advance through the spaces between support plate 9 and support rails 4t), 40 will have first an upward and then a downward wiping engagement with the rearmost envelope of each pack P, since the latter is conlined to a straightaway rectilinear path by the lower and upper plates 9 and 1t).

As will be clear from FIG. 4, the posts 74, 74, by reason of starting each pack-pushing movement from a position far above the horizontal dia-meter of their parallel motion circul-ar path, attain their maximum speed almost immediately. This insures each packs initial forward movement at an extremely rapid rate, which in every case enables said pack as well as the pushing devices 74, 74, to clear the collecting station and its spring fingers 14 and 19 ahead of t-he arrival of the next packs rst envelope. On the other hand, toward the completion of each packs described forward movement, as the upper ends of posts 74, 74 approach the level of support plate 9, there is a gradual reduction of each packs forward speed, such as to eliminate any danger of its overrunning the position toy which it is advanced by said pushing devices 74, 74. It is particularly to be noted that the effective pack advancing movement of these posts 714, 74, preferably terminating (see FIG. 4) just before their upper ends reach the level of support plate 9 will in every case carry the bottom edge of each packs rearmost envelope to or just beyond the forward transverse edge 75 (see FIG. 2) of said support plates opening 15.

This limited forward movement of each pack P is availed of, as is customary in the banding art, for the pick-up and transport of an adhesive-tipped band length disposed across the pack path, such that oppositely extending band portions, from encounter with opposed surfaces closely anking said path, are folded back transversely across opposed leading edges of said pack. According to our invention, this same pack movement is also used, in a novel and extremely useful fashion, to fold both trailing band ends inwardly, into overlapped but unstuck relation, behind their packs rear face. However, before dealing with these band end folding operations, it is appropriate to describe the means by which the band material B, as supplied in web form, is intermittently fed downwardly through plate openings 15 and 15', so as to be disposed across the path of each so-moved pack P, and is severed and glue-spotted, at or just before the packs pick-up action.

As shown in FIG. 1, the band web B (depicted here by broken lines) is provided by a large supply roll 76, whose axle or trunnion 77 is supported by a suitable bracket 78 extending forwardly from the upright standard 30. It will be understood that this band supply roll 76, the narrow band web B unwound therefrom, and the various pulleys, feed wheels and other devices, as hereinafter described, by which said web is handled, are all in the same vertical plane and that passes lengthwise through the openings 15 and 15 of plates 9 and 10 respectively. Thus web material B, as fed down through these plate openings across the pack path, presents its surfaces in parallel relation to the front face of each oncoming pack P.

As shown in FIGS. 1, 3, 14 and l5, the top of the upright standard 30 carries and has secured thereto a flat transverse support plate 79. This plate provides spaced apart rearward extensions 80 and 81, upon which are secured aligned bearings 82 and 82 for a transverse band feed shaft 83. Secured to the front end of shaft 83 is our main band feed roll 84, over which the band web B from supply roll 76 is trained (see FIG. 1) to direct its leading end downwardly through the apertures 15 and 15 of plates 9 and 10. Between supply roll 76 and this feed roll 84 the band web B preferably passes (see FIG. 1) over and under a `suitable series of fixed guide pulleys 85, 85 and yieldably mounted dancer pulleys 86, 86. Such a dancer pulley arrangement is common practice in the intermittent feeding of web or sheet materials, to prevent theirbreakage by sudden or undue tension or pull. Since this dancer pulley arrangement forms no part of our invention, a further description of its construction and operation is deemed unnecessary.

The other end of shaft 83 extends beyond the bearing 82 and is supported by a suitable outboard bearing 87. Between the bearings 82' and 87, said shaft 83 journals a pinion 88 (see FIGS. 3 and 7) whose rotation, in one direction only, is communicated to shaft 83 by action of an adjoining one-way roller clutch 89 of standard (Formsprag) construction. In mesh with pinion 88 is a gear `segment 90, which is rockably or pivotally mounted on the projecting end 91 of a second transverse shaft 92, to be hereafter described. The gear segment 90 along one edge has an extended arm 93 providing an elongated slot 94. The `slot 94 receives a bolt 95 carrying a retaining nut 95', by which this gear segment 90 is adjustably con nected, at different distances from its pivotal axis 91, to the upper end of a cam rod 96. This rod 96 near its lower end carries a roller 97, which, by the downward pull on said rod of a suitably anchored spring 98, is held against a cam 99 secured to the one-revolution shaft 50.

On upward movement of rod 96 by cam 99, the rocking of gear segment 90 causes a rotation of pinion 88, that is communicated by one-way clutch 89 to the shaft 83 and to the band feed roll 84. This gives said roll 84, as seen in FIG. 1, a counterclockwise turning movement for the downward feed, through plate apertures 15 and 15', of the band web B. But on the return or downward movement of cam rod 96, at each single revolution of shaft 50, the opposite rocking of gear segment 90 produces no turning movement at all of shaft 83 and its attached roll 84; this is because pinion 88, under these conditions, is rotating oppositely, in a direction that renders the clutch device 89 wholly inoperative.

Cooperating with roll 84 in t-he intermittent downward feed of `band web B, is an opposed smaller feed roll 100. This roll 100 is secured to a short spindle 101, parallel to shaft 83, that is journaled in spaced upright arms 102, 102', provided by a suitable block 103. This block pivots on a horizontal pin 104 (FIG. 1) provided by a front bearing 105 for the previously mentioned second transverse shaft 92. The shaft 83 and spindle 101 carry intermeshing gears 106 and 107 respectively, for the drive of said spindle and its feed rol-l 100 from said shaft. The forward pull of a suitably anchored spring 108 (see FIG. 14) on the pivoted supporting structure of feed roll 100 presses `said roll strongly toward its companion feed roll 84, thereby to insure a non-slip downward feed of the interposed band web B when these rolls are intermittently rotated, as above described, by the cam 99 of one-revolu* tion shaft 50. The pivotal mounting 104 allows roll 100 1f) to be slightly retracted temporarily, for the threading in of a new band web B whenever a supply roll 76 is exhausted. For this purpose, the shaft 83 carries a suitable hand wheel 109, for manual turning of these band feed rolls.

FIG. 1 shows how the band webs leading portion, after every feeding operation by rolls 84, 100, hangs downward through the apertures of plates 9 and 10, 4across the path of an envelope pack P that is about to be rapidly ejected from the collection station and moved forward between said plates. According to our invention, this pendent band web material, just before being struck by each so-moving pack, is severed at a preselected distance, above the plate 10. Such severances create, for each oncoming packs pick up and transport, individual bands of the proper length to be folded, with ends overlapped, about the respective packs P. Also, each so-severed band length, simultaneously with its severance, receives a spot of moist glue, near its upper end. The devices for so operating recurrently on the leading end of band web B, after each downward feed of same by rolls 84, 100, are depicted in FIGS. l, 3, 5 and 6.

As shown in FIGS. 1 and 6, a rearwardly facing portion of the upright standard 30, underlying the front end of support plate 79, provides a pair of opposed spaced apart vertical flanges 110, 110. To the outside of the standards face, beyond the flanges 110, 110, are secured a pair of vertical gibs 111, 111, thereby to provide a pair of spaced upright guideways 112, 112 for the support and up-and-down adjustment of a vertical slide member 113, that snugly fits in said guideways. Between the standards flanges, the member 113 provides a lug 114 having a screwthreaded vertical hole 115 therethrough. This hole 115 received the threaded lower end of a vertical rod 116 which extends upwardly through a suitable opening of support plate 79. Secured to rod 116 is a lower collar 117 bearing against the support plates under surface, and an upper collar 118 bearing against the support plates top surface, thus to hold said rod from moving endwise in the support plates opening. Said upper collar 118 is formed with a suitable handwheel 119, by which said rod 116 is turnable, in one direction to raise and in the other direction to lower the slide member 113, relative to the fixed-level upper apertured plate 10 that guides the forward movement of the successive envelope packs.

Integral with this vertical slide 113 is a horizontal support structure, designated as a whole by the numeral 120. Said support structure comprises (see FIG. 6) a longitudinal portion 121 and a transverse tubular portion 122. The longitudinal portion 121 provides two spaced generally upright sides 123 and 124 which overlie and parallel the apertured upper plate 10. The transverse tubular portion 122 (see FIG. 3) houses and journals a shaft 125, whose inner end, beyond said tubular portion, is in approximate overlying relation to a track cam 126, secured to the one-revolution shaft 50.

As shown in FIGS. 1 and 6, the pendent leading end of band web B, passes freely between the spaced sides 123 and 124, just forwardly of a cross bar 127 that connects the upper edges of said sides. The cross bars edge which faces the band web B is appropriately sharpened to provide a stationary knife edge 128. Arranged just below said knife edge 128 (see FIGS. l and 5), is a small tubular exit passage 129 that leads from a suitably supported glue receptacle 130. This exit passage 129 is normally closed od, by an interior ball valve 131, held firmly to its seat by a coil spring 132.

The sides 123, 124 provide suitable interior ways 123i 124- for the support and endwise sliding movement of a ram member 133, whose under surface provides rack teeth 133'. In mesh with said rack teeth is a pinion 134, secured to the front end of the shaft which extends through the transverse tubular portion 122 of support structure 120. The inner end of shaft 125 carries an arm 135, to the end of which is pivotally connected at 136 the upper end of a rod 137. This rod 137 is one part of a twopart adjustable length cam rod by which the shaft 125 and its pinion 134 are given a back-and-forth rocking motion by the track cam 126 on single-revolution shaft 50. The other part of said cam rod is an aligned member 13S (see FIGS. 3 and 5) having an elongated split socket portion 139. This socket portion 139, after receiving the lower end of rod 137, is tightened thereon by a suitable clamping device 14d.

The lower socketed part of the two-part cam rod 137, 13S carries a roller 141 which rides in the track of cam 126. The ram 133 carries a suitable blade 142, in a plane slightly higher than the plane of fixed knife edge 128. In the rest position of ram 153 (when roller 141 occupies the concentric portion of track cam 126) the blade 142 is on the opposite side of band web B from the ixed knife edge 128, as is also a pin 143 of said ram, which is directly aligned with the tightly closed ball valve 131 of the glue receptacles outlet 129. Just before each rapidly advancing pack P encounters the pendent end of band web B across its path, the cam 126 (see FIG. 5) produces a rapid upward movement of arm 135 which, through shaft 125, pinion 134 and rack teeth 133, gives ram 133 a sharp rearward movement; this is followed by said rams return to rest position. The rams rearward movement obtains severance of band web B by passage of blade 142 across knife edge 128, and simultaneously, the momentary depression by pin 143 of the ball 131. By virtue of this last, glue `outlet 129 puts a small spot of moist glue (indicated at 144 in FIGS. l0 to l2 inclusive) upon the deflected upper end of every so-severed strip b of band material.

The length of the successively severed band strips b must always be somewhat greater than the girth of each pack P, in order for the strips ends (see FIG. 13) to overlap one another. The pack girth depends in large measure on the height dimension of its constituent envelopes E, E. In other words, for banding of packs of relatively high envelopes, the band web feed rolls 84, 150 at each operation must feed downwardly, past the severing blades 128, 142, a much greater length of the band web B than for packs of relatively low envelopes. This need for the severed band strips b, b to be of different lengths, depending upon the height and number of the envelopes in each pack P, is taken care of by the band web feed adjustment shown in FIG. 7. For producing relatively long band lengths b, the connection 95, 95 between gear segment 90 and can rod 96 is made near the inner end of slot 94; for shorter band lengths b, this connection 95, 95 is shifted toward the outer end of said slot 94.

It will be understood from the foregoing that each gluetipped band strip b, practically at the instant f being cut and freed from the web B, is picked up and carried forward by the front face of a rapidly advancing envelope pack P. This joint pack-and-band movement serves here, similarly as it has in prior banding mechanisms, to produce rearward folds of the band across opposite front edges of its pack. This familiar folding action stems from encounter of the moving bands opposite extensions (beyond the packs front face) with opposed surfaces in close proximity to the pack path. But our invention also uses this same pack-and-band movement, with far-reaching effect, to produce inward folds of the bands two trailing ends -across opposite rear edges of the pack, so as to dispose said ends in overlapped but unstuck relation behind the packs rear face.

For this purpose, the forward ends of the lower and upper plate apertures and 15 are equipped (see FIGS. l, 2 and 9 to l2 inclusive) with opposed lower and upper band folders 145 and 145 respectively; these, as described below, are yieldably biased into the pack path by means of springs, weights, or the like. Both folders are preferably of the construction shown in large scale by FIG. 8, for the lower folder 145. That is, both folders provide an intermediate generally upright cross bar 146, from whose ends extend rea-rwardly a pair of spaced prongs 147, 147, which taper off in height, from said cross ba-rs height. However, the two folders are so mounted as to face each other. In other words, the lower folders cross bar 146 and sloping prongs 147, 147 normally project upwardly into the pack path above the support surface of apertured plate 9, whereas the corresponding parts of upper folder normally project downwardly into the pack path below the inne-r or guide surface of apertured plate 10.

As shown in FIGS. l, 4 and 9, the leading end of pendent band web B hangs down between lthe prongs 147, 147 of both of the folders 145, 145. As shown in FIGS. 2 and 8, the respective prongs inner opposed surfaces 148, 14S are appropriately sloped, lso as to serve as guides for the edges of the band material, sho-nld the latter tend to get out of alignment, or to go off center. The rear or band-facing surface 149 of each cross bar 146 is also preferably sloped, as shown, to facilitate drawing forward of each bands intermediate portion beyond these cross bars, as e-ach packs forward travel creates the customary frontal folds (f, f in FIG. 1l) of its pickedup band. l

On the other hand, each c-ross bars opposite or forwardly facing surface 150 is substantially upright; that i's, in the normal folder positions shown by FIG. 9, at the limit of their projection into the pack path, each forward-v ly facing cross bar surface 156 occupies a transverse vertical plane just to the rear of the associated plate openings forward transverse edge (the edge 75 of lower plate opening 15, and the slightly farther forward edge 75 pf. upper plate opening 15'). Forwardly of these edges 75 and 75', the respective lower and upper plates 9 and 10 are cut away, to form therein the generally rectangular exterior recesses 151 and 152. Each of these recesses receives, for pivotal mounting, the associated folders in-v tegral forward extension 153 (see FIG. 8). Such extension 153, for each folder, is formed, beyond its `cross brace 154, with a pair of aligned holes 155 (one shown in FIG. 8). These holes have a tight immovable fit on a horizontal cross spindle 156 (see FIGS. l and 2) which is pivotally mounted in the associated plate, near the front end of its recess 151 or its recess 152, as the case may be.

The cross spindle 156 carrying lower folder 145 has a projecting arm 157 on which an attached suitably auchored spring 158 (FIGS. l and 2) pulls downwardly. This serves to yieldably hold the lower folder 145 at its upper limit (FIG. 9) in the path of pack movement. Simi larly, the cross spindle 156 carrying upper folder 145' has a projecting arm 159, on which a suitably anchored spring 160 (FIGS. l and 15) pulls upwardly. This serves to yieldably hold the upper folder 145 at its lower limit (FIG. 9) in the path of pack movement. It will be obvious that, in lieu of the springs 158 and 160, suitable weights (not shown) may be applied to the respective folders 145 and 145', so as to urge them yieldably, as above described, into the pack path.

As shown in FIG. 10, when any just-severed and gluespotted band length b is being encountered and picked up by a rapidly advancing pack P, the latter will have already engaged the opposed yieldable folders 145, 145 land ystarted to wedge them apart, by movement along the rearwardly divergent approach surfaces provided by their respective sloping prongs 147, 147. The gradually increasing pull created in both folder springs 158 and 160 by this wedging apart of the folders imposes a beneficial frictional drag on the band material by the folder cross bars 146, 146, during the customary formation of the bands frontal folds f, f, by joint movement of pack and lband between the plates 9 and 10. This drag keeps the band taut, and overcomes any tendency of same to bulge or billow forwardly from the packs front face.

However, the prime and very significant utility of these retractible spring-biased folder members 145, 145 is their action on the respective ends of the lower and upper band extensions d and e, which extend back from the usual front folds f, f. As each pack P ne-ars the limit of its forward movement imparted by the pusher posts 74, 74, it will have pushed back the folder cross bars for passage therebetween, and thereby markedly increased the pull of the folder springs 158 and 160. Then, just as the packs last envelope has gotten past the lower folders cross bar 146 (see FIG. 11) the pentup force of spring 15S [has snapped said folder upwardly, against the relatively short extremity of band portion d. Said extremity is thereby delected upwardly into the pack path, and is given by the cross ba-rs perpendicular front face 150, a transverse line of bend or fold f', defined by the packs lower rear edge. FiG. 1l also shows the upper folder 145 in the act of being snapped back by the pent-up force of its spring 160 to its lower limit-an action which (see FIG. 12) forcibly deflects downwardly the relatively long trailing glue-tipped extremity of the band lengths upward extension e, such as to give same, by virtue of the cross bars perpendicular front face 150, a transverse line of band or fold f2, corresponding to the packs upper rear edge.

The folds f1 and f2 are made in the above described sequence (rather than simultaneously) because the lower and upper folders 145 and 145' are not in exact vertical alignment. Instead, the lower folder 145, as shown throughout the drawings, is very slightly to the rear (or left) of the upper folder 145'. This makes certain that the lower band end receives its upward deection just prior to the downward deflection of the upper band end, so as to dispose said ends in overlapped but unstuck relation behind each packs rear or trailing face. Because of this slight forward offset of t-he upper folder 145', it is not always a certainty that the envelope packs, as p-ropelled forward by the posts 74, 74, will get their upper edges past the crest of said upper folders cross bar 146. Especially is this the case when the envelopes of said packs are few in number, and are made of light weight flimsy paper, such that each so-propelled pack has very little stiffness or resi-stance to backward bending.

Our invention meets and overcomes any such possibilities, by devices synchronized with the pusher posts 74, 74, that push against each packs upper portion, to insure the latters above described triggering of the upper folder 145'. For this purpose, the front end of the previously mentioned transverse shaft 92 carries a pair of spaced brackets 161, 161. Adjustably secured to said brackets are parallel `rearwardly and downwardly extending pusher arms 162, 162, which (see FIG. 3) flank the upper plate 10, and have a rest position (see FIG. 4) above said plate.

To the other end of shaft 92 is secured an arm 163, which has a pivotal connection 163 with the upper end of a camrod 164. This rod 164 carries near its lower end a roller 165 which, by downward pull on said rod ofa suitably anchored spring 167, is held against a cam 166, secured to the one-revolution shaft 50. On each upward movement of rod 164 by cam 166, the shaft 92 is given a sharp counterclockwise rocking. This is of just sufficient amplitude for the tips of arms 162, 162, coming in behind an advancing pack P, to push the latters upper portion past the upper folder 145', immediately after the lower folder 145 has been triggered, as above described, by the lower part of the pack. The arms then swing back, under the influence Iof cam 166, to the rest position shown in FIG. 4.

It is quite important, in the use and operation of our banding apparatus, that the band webs downward extension d-below the support plate 9 be kept relatively short. Otherwise, there would be a tendency for this extensions up-turned extremity, beyond the fold f', to bend or lean backwardly, and thus interfere with the im-. mediately ensuing downward overlapping movement (FIG. 11)l of the severed band lengths upward extension e. The Vabove-described capacity of the band cut-off mechanismrfor `vertical adjustment, by turning of hand wheel 119, allows this relative shortness of downward extensions d to be established for all required lengths of severed band strips b. At each such adjustment, the two-part cam rod 137, 138 needs of course to be correspondingly lengthened or shortened, as the case may be.

It will be clear from the foregoing description, that during each packs single short movement (as imparted by pusher posts 74, 74 and if need be by pusher arms 162, 162) its picked-up glue-tipped band length receives not only the customary frontal folds f, f, but also, by virtue of the load-and-lre action of folder elements 145, the sequential inward folding of its opposite end portions at f and f2, over opposite edges of the packs rear face. In other words, each pack comes. to rest, at the end of its band pick-up movement, with its band ends already deflected inwardly, in overlapped but unstuck relation behind said packs rear face. This dispenses with all need for the usual post-movement actuations and withdrawals of band end folding and pressing devices, and other pack shifting devices, that have always consumed so much time in prior banding mechanisms of this type. For merely by leaving each so-conditioned pack in the line of pack movement (see FlGS. l and 9-12 inclusive) all of these functions, for the completion of its banding operation, are performed thereon by the next and following packs, as each of these, in finishing its single 'short movement, forcibly displaces and pushes ahead all preceding so-conditioned packs, such as to press and hold their already overlapped band ends in pro longed adhesive-sticking contact.

Thus it is, that for each packs complete banding no expenditures of time, over and above those involved in the customary brief band pick-up movements of the successive packs, are ever required. In short, our invention establishes, for the first time, the two conditions that are vital and essential to mechanical small pack banding of rapidly delivered envelopes-these being (1) that each pack, no matter how brief the period of its collection, can be given its band pick-up movement immediately, without detriment to or interference with the preceding packs banding operation, and (2) that the net time consumed, in each packs banding, be no greater than the period of its collection.

Here, this net time consumption," for each packs banding, is of minimal split-second duration-being merely the time (1A of a second or less) that it takes for pushers 74, 74 to give each pack its short band pickup movement and then get back into pushing position for the next pack. As a concrete illustration, let it be assumed that the constantly running hub or sleeve 4S is driven from motor 44 at a reduced lspeed rotation of 240 rpm. This speed (four revolutions per second) would mean that each single revolution of our pusher actuating shaft 50 is completed in li of a second.

In this situation, if the wheels 1, 1 are delivering 300 envelopes per minute (a normal or average production rate for a conventional modern envelope-making machine) our invention can readily produce successive banded packs containing as few as two envelopes apiece. This is because our banding cycle time (1A of a second) is appreciably less than the time (2/5 of a second) that it would take for two envelopes, at this 300 per minute delivery rate, to collect at the rear ends of plates 9 and 10.

Furthermore, even if the wheels 1, 1 are delivering 900 envelopes per minute (a production rate attainable as aforesaid by the respective inventions of Heywood Patents Nos. 2,772,611 and 2,851,934 and of Kennedy Patent No. 2,811,905) our invention can readily produce successive banded packs containing as few as five envelopes apiece. This is because our banding cycle time (1A of a second) is appreciably less than the time (one third of a second) that it would take for ve envelopes,

15 at this 900 per minute delivery rate, to collect at the rear ends of plates 9 and 1f).

Our inventions achievement of a Series of rapidly repeated small pack banding operations will always take place, whenever the electronic counter 27 is given a lowcount setting or adjustment. In that situation said counter, for each delivery by wheels 1, 1 of the selected small number of envelopes, will inaugurate one complete revolution of shaft 5f). By virtue of this, the collected small pack with its picked-up band, from being pushed between and past the band end folders llt-5, 145', pushes slightly forward the several packs maintained in its path (see FIG. 1) and cornes to rest itself, just beyond said folders, with its trailing band ends already folded in and overlapped.

In all such small pack banding, these separate single revolutions of shaft 50 take pla-ce in very rapid succession, with only a negligible time interval between them. On the other hand, when counter 27 is set or adjusted for the collection of medium-count or high-count packs, the time intervals between these separate single revolutions of shaft 50 will be appreciably and correspondingly longer, by reason of the time consumed in the collection of every such larger pack. But whatever the pack size, the actual net time expended on its banding operation is always the same. Such time expenditure, in every case, is merely the brief time which the pushers 74, 74 take, in rapidly advancing each collected packs rear face to a point slightly beyond the folders 145, 145', and then getting back, just as rapidly, to their (said pushers) rest or starting position.

The final stage of each packs rapid advance movement is always against an appreciable resistance or back pressure, due to the inertia of the several preceding banded packs that are always maintained, beyond the folders 145, 145', in the line of pack movement. Since pusher posts 74, 74 (and top pusher arms 162, 162) have forward throws that carry each packs rear face slightly beyond the forward upright faces 150, d of said folders, this back pressure does not impede, frictionally or otherwise, the previously described snap-back folder movements that deflect each bands trailing ends into the pack path. On the other hand, the instant that pusher posts 74, 74 (and arms 162, 162) start to retreat from their extreme yforward positions, this back pressure exerts a rearward thrust on each newly arrived pack, such as press its inturned band ends against the folder faces 15), 150, and thereby increase the sharpness of their transverse folds f and f2 across said packs lower and upper rear edges.

In starting up a series of our banding operations, this beneficial back pressure can be temporarily supplied, if desired, by exertion of suitable rearward hand pressure against the initially delivered banded packs, until enough of them have accumulated, beyond the folders 145, 145 to establish an upright pack delivery condition such as is represented in FIG. l. Another such starting up expedient, well known in the art, is to dispose on support plate 9, just ahead of said folders, a slidable weighted stop member, of the type shown at 171i in the aforesaid Heywood Patent No. 1,839,152. Such a weighted member, by its frictional resistance to forward movement, supplie-s the above-mentioned back pressure, and also, by its shape, keeps the initially delivered packs from toppling forward.

The amount of this benecial back pressure is proportional to the length, beyond folders 145, 145', of the pack-supporting surface. The forward end of support plate 9, as shown in FIG. 1, has pivoted thereto at 168 an extension 169, which receives and supports the foremost banded packs as they move from support plate to the machines delivery table (not shown). If it be desired for any reason to increase the effective back pressure, this extension 169 can be swung upwardly about its pivot 168, and suitably supported in such higher position. On

CII

16 the other hand, if a decrease in the effective back pressure is desired, said extension 169 can be swung downwardly about its pivot, to limit the pack-supporting surface to the length, beyond folders 145, of the support plate 9.

We claim:

1. In high speed banding of successively-collected packs of envelopes or the like, wherein a limited translatory movement of each pack is used for its front face pick-up and transport of an adhesive-tipped band disposed across the pack path, such that opposite band extensions beyond said face, from encounter with opposed surfaces closely flanking said path, are folded back over opposite front edges of the moving pack, the improvement which consists in procuring by and during each packs said movement the inward deflection of both ends of its so-folded band extensions into overlapped but unstuck relation behind said packs rear face, leaving each so-conditioned pack in the line of pack movement, and procuring the completion of its banding by pressures thereafter exerted against said band ends by the ensuing ban-d pick-up movements of the next and following packs.

2. In high speed banding of successively-collected packs of envelopes or the like, wherein a limited translatory movement of each pack is used for its front face pick-up and transport of an adhesive-tipped band disposed across the pack path, such that opposite band extensions beyond said face, from encounter with opposed surfaces closely flanking said path, are folded back over opposite front edges of the moving pack, the improvements `which consist in also using each packs same movement to trigger the release of opposed lateral forces against the respective ends of its bands so-folded extensions, such as to deflect said ends into overlapped but unstuck relation behind said packs rear face, maintaining each band-surrounded pack in the line of pack movement, and using the band pick-up movements of the next and following packs, in pushing such band-surrounded pack and its predecessors ahead, to press and hold their already overlapped band ends in prolonged close adhesive-sticking contact with one another.

3. The high speed banding method as defined in claim 2, which includes using an earlier stage of each packs band pick-up movement to build up the opposed lateral forces that are later released, by said packs movement, against the ends of its band.

4. The high speed banding method as defined by claim 3 which includes the release of said band end deflecting forces by arrival of each packs rear face at a predetermined point in the path of each pack.

5. The high speed banding method as defined by claim 2, which includes laterally deflecting the band ends into the pack path on lines of bend or fold defined by opposite edges of the packs trailing face.

6. The high speed banding method as defined by claim 2, in which the detlecting forces are released sequentially against the respective band ends, such that one end overlaps the other.

7. The high speed banding method as defined by claim 2, which includes collecting and moving the envelopes or like articles of the successive packs in edgewise-supported substantially upright relation, for pick-up and transport by each so-moved pack of a length of band material that hangs down by gravity across said packs front face.

8. The high speed banding method as defined in claim 7, which includes severing each gravity pendent length of band material from the leading end of an intermittentlyweb, at or just before a moving packs encounter therewith.

9. In banding apparatus for successively collected packs of envelopes or like articles, of the class having means for giving each pack a limited translatory movement, and means for supplying across the pack path, for front face pick-up and transport by each moving pack, a scalable band, such that opposite band extensions beyond each packs front face, from encounter with opposed surfaces closely flanking said path, are folded back over opposite front edges of the moving pack, the combination with such pack moving and band supplying and frontal folding means, of means released into the pack path by and during each packs said movement for defecting both ends of its bands said extensions inwardly, into overlapped but unsealed relation behind said packs rear face, and means for supporting and maintaining each so-conditioned pack in the line of such band pick-up movement that the band pick-up movements of the next and following packs, in pushing said pack and its predecessors ahead, serve to press and hold said overlapped band ends in prolonged sealing contact with each other.

10. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 9, in which the band and deliecting means are a pair of opposed members yieldably biased into the pack path from opposite sides, such as to be pushed out of said path by each packs initial encounter therewith.

11. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 10, in which said pair of members are spring biased into the pack path.

12. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 10, in which said pair of yieldably biased members provide approach surfaces in the pack -path which are rearwardly divergent lengthwise of said path, such as to be wedged apart by each packs movement between them.

13. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 1f), in which the pair of yieldably biased members thave front end surfaces, crosswise of and perpendicular to the pack path, which, when reached and passed by the moving packs opposite rear edges, allow said members to spring back intosaid path, for so deflecting the bands trailing ends.

14. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 13, including means for extending the limited translatory movement imparted to each pack beyond the perpendicular front end surfaces of the yieldably biased members.

15. Banding apparatus ase dened in claim 14, in which the respective front end surfaces of the pair of yieldably biased members are in slightly offset relation lengthwise of the pack path, such that one member is released for band end deflection just ahead of the other member.

r16. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 12, in which the approach surfaces of the yieldably biased members are bifurcated, with sufficient spacing between their bifurcations for free passage breathwise of the band ma* terial.

17. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 10, in which the pair of opposed yieldably biased members provide the surfaces closely iianking the pack path which are encountered by opposite band extensions beyond each packs front face.

18. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 9, including means for collecting and moving the articles of the successive packs in face-to-back edgewise supported substantially upright relation, and means for supplying for pick-up and transport by each pack an upright pendent length of band material having upward and downward extensions beyond the packs front face.

19. Banding apparatus as claimed in claim 18, including means for severing each band length from the leading pendent end of an intermittently fed band material web, at or just before a moving packs encounter therewith.

20. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 18, in which the -pack path is provided between a pair of vertically spaced substantially horizontal plates, providing pivotal supports exteriorly of said path for the respective yieldably biased members, and having aligned apertures in j which said members operate and through which the pendent band material extends.

21. Banding apparatus as defined in claim 20, in which the lower plate is vertically adjustable, to adapt said apparatus to edgewise supported articles of different heights.

22. In banding apparatus for successively collected packs of envelopes or like articles, the class having means for giving each pack a limited translatory movement, and means for supplying across the pack path, for front face pick-up and transport by each moving pack, an adhesive-tipped band, such that opposite band extensions beyond each packs front face, from encounter with opposed surfaces closely lianking said path, are folded back across opposite front edges of the moving pack, the combination with such pack moving and band supp1ying and frontal folding means, of spring means, first loaded and then fired by each pack-andl-band movement, for so deliecting each bands trailing ends that theystand in overlapped but unstuck relation at the nish of said movement, behind their packs rear face, and means for supporting and maintaining each so-conditioned pack in the line of such band pick-up movement for completion of its banding by the pressure against said band ends of the next and following packs, as they finish their respective band pick-up movements.

23. In the banding of successively collected packs of envelopes or like articles, wherein a limited forward movement of each pack obtains its front face pick-up and movement of an elongate adhesive-tipped band, such that oppositely extending band portions, from encountered with opposed surfaces flanking the pack path, are folded back across opposite front edges of the moving pack, the improvement which consists in first creating opposed spring forces by and during an initial stage of each packs said band pick-up movement, then releasing said forces against the two trailing ends of the so folded band portions by and during an intermediate stage of each packs said movement such as to deflect said ends inwardly behind said packs rear face, and using the final stage of each packs said movement, as it displaces and pushes ahead the preceding pack and its picked-up band to press said bands so-deflected ends into close adhesive-sticking contact with each other, against the rear face of said preceding pack, such that each pack, however brief the period of its collection, can receive its limited forward band pick-up movement as soon as it is collected.

24. The banding method as defined by claim 23, which includes the creation of said opposed spring forces by pack-and-band movement between opposed band contacting surfaces that are spring biased into the pack path from opposite sides thereof.

25. The banding method as defined by claim 24, which includes the release of said opposed spring forces by pack-and-band movement beyond said spring biased surfaces.

26. The banding method as defined by claim 23, which includes creation and release of said band end deflecting forces by pack-andband movement between and past a pair of band contacting surfaces that are spring biased into the pack path from opposite sides thereof.

27. The banding method as defined in claim 23, which includes supporting and maintaining a plurality of said packs, after such inward deflection of their band ends, in the line of packand-band movement, such as to prolong the pressing action on each such pack, and to create a back pressure against the final stage of each following packs forward movement.

28. The banding method as defined by claim 27, which includes relieving said back pressure on each pack, during the band end deflecting action of said opposed spring forces.

29. The banding method as defined by claim 28, which includes using said back pressure, after each inward deflection of said band ends, to give them transverse folds across opposite rear edges of the associated pack.

30. The banding method as defined by claim 27, which includes adjusting said back pressure by varying,V the effective supporting surface of said plurality of packs.

31. In banding apparatus for successively collected packs of envelopes or like articles, of the class providing means for giving each pack a limited forward movement,

and means for supplying across its path, for front face pick-up and transport thereby, an adhesive-tipped band, such that oppositely extending band portions beyond said face, from encounter with opposed surfaces iianking said path, are folded back across opposite front edges of the moving pack, the combination with such pack forwarding and band supplying means of means yieldably biased into the pack path, such as to be first pushed back and then released by each packs said movement, for deflecting into said path of said release the two trailing ends of each packs so-folded band portions, in position to be pressed into close adhesive-sticking contact with each other by the final stage of the next packs limited forward band pick-up movement.

32. Banding apparatus as defined by claim 31, which includes means for supporting and maintaining a plurality of said packs, after such inward defiection of their band ends, in the line of pack-'lnd-band movement, such as to prolong the pressing action on their band ends, and to create a back pressure against the final stage of each following packs forward movement.

33. Banding apparatus as defined by claim 32, which includes pack forwarding means that carry each packs rear face slightly beyond said yieldably biased means, whereby to relieve momentarily said back pressure, during each band end deflecting operation of said yieldably biased means.

34. Banding apparatus as defined by claim 32, which includes means for adjusting said back pressure.

35. Banding apparatus as defined by claim 32, which includes means for varying the effective length of said pack supporting means, whereby to increase or diminish said back pressure.

36. Banding apparatus as defined by claim 31, which includes means for collecting the articles of each pack in edgewise-supporting substantially upright position.

37. Banding apparatus as defined by claim 31, which includes pack forwarding means comprising substantially upright pushing members which have parallel motion in a forward and downward circular arc against each packs rear face, such as to move said face to a point beyond said yieldably biased means.

38. Banding apparatus as defined by claim 37, in which the pack advancing action of said upright pushing members is supplemented by pushing action of oscillatory members against the upper rear edge of each pack.

39. A machine for banding packs of thin substantially rectangular articles comprising a pair of elongated parallel guides vertically spaced apart at a distance approximately equal to the width of said articles, accumulating means at one end of said guides for assembling said articles one by one into a pack of a predetermined number, said articles being supported edgewise upon the lower one of said guides, means for counting said articles as they pass to said accumulating means, a banding station located between said guides intermediate the lengths thereof, transfer means responsive to the action of said counting means to move said pack horizontally from one end of the lower guide through and beyond said banding station, said accumulating means, spaced guides and banding station defining a linear path of pack travel, means at said banding station for feeding a st-rip of flexible banding material of a predetermined length across the path of said guides, said feeding means acting in advance of the movement of said pack through said banding station, means at said banding station for folding the upper and lower extremities of the strip of banding material rearwardly away from the leading face of said pack and against the edges thereof and for subsequently folding said upper and lower extremities inwardly in overlapping relation against the trailing face of said pack as said pack transfer means moves said pack through said banding station, said transfer means being adapted upon its movement beyond said banding station to urge said pack against the strip extremities of the preceding pack and means CIJ located beyond said banding station for accumulating the completely banded packs from between said plates.

40. Apparatus according to claim 39 wherein said last mentioned means includes means for varying the back pressure upon said banded packs.

41. Apparatus for banding envelopes or like articles into individual packs of envelopes comprising, counting means, means to accumulate envelopes into a pack, guide means engaging an edge of the pack to guide said pack along a path, means for extending a web of banding material across said path, web folding means on opposite sides of said path, transfer means to move the pack of envelopes along said path to intercept said web and carrying said web therewith between said folding means to effectuate folding of said web about the leading top and bottom' edges of the pack, cyclic drive means operatively connected to said transfer means and to said web extending means, and means responsive to said counting means to initiate a cycle of said cyclic drive means after delivery of a predetermined number of envelopes to said accumulating means, the envelopes while being accumulated and transferred through said folding means moving in substantially the same direction.

42. Apparatus for banding articles according to claim 41 wherein the folding of the web about each pack occurs during the uninterrupted forward advance of said pack by said transfer means.

'43. Apparatus as set forth in claim 41, said folding means including means for substantially simultaneously completing folds of the web about the trailing top and bottom edges of the accumulated pack.

44. A method for banding envelopes or like articles comprising counting envelopes or the like articles, then accumulating the counted envelopes into packs, feeding a length of banding web across the path of pack travel,

transferring the packs toward the banding web, first folding the banding web across the leading top and bottom edges of the pack, then folding the banding web about the trailing edges of the pack, said accumulating, transferring and folding taking place while the envelopes are being moved in the same direction.

45. A method of high speed banding of envelopes or like articles comprising the steps of counting envelopes, then accumulating the counted envelopes into packs, feeding a length of banding web across the path of pack travel, transferring each accumulated pack toward the banding web, first folding the banding web about the leading top and bottom edges of the pack, then folding the banding web about the trailing edges of the pack, said accumulating, transferring and folding taking place while the envelopes are continuously moved in the same direction.

46. An apparatus for banding envelopes into packs including linear supporting means, means for advancing envelopes one after another with the face side of one envelope facing the opposite side of an adjacent envelope and with the edges thereof movable along the linear supporting means, means for gathering the envelopes into packs while they are being accumulated on the linear supporting means, means for feeding a strip of banding material to extend across the path of the leading side of a foremost pack, means for receiving the foremost pack therebetween and for bringing the strip across the forward, upper and lower edges of the pack, means for folding the ends of the strip into overlapping relation at the rear side of the pack and means for retracting said band folding means for advance of a succeeding pack.

47. A method of banding envelopes into packets, including continuously depositing and advancing envelopes in a linear path one after another with the face side of one envelope facing the rear side of an adjacent envelope, ccntirolling advance of a foremost envelope in said path to cause a number of envelopes to gather into a pack, separating the pack from the following envelopes which are deposited and advanced in said linear path and advancing the pack along said linear path to a wrapping station, feeding a strip of wrapping material across one side of the pack While retained in said linear path and in sucient length to extend about the pack and leave overlapping ends, bringing the ends of the strip around to Ithe opposite side of the pack while the pack is retained in said linear path, folding the ends of the strip in overlapping relation and effecting a seal of said overlapped ends to complete a packet of said envelopes, and resisting movement of the completed packets along said linear path to apply pressure of a succeeding packet against the seal of a preceding packet.

48. A method of banding envelopes into packets, including advancing envelopes in a linear path one after another with the face side of one envelope facing the rear side of an adjacent envelope, controlling advance of a foremost envelope to cause the following envelopes to gather into a pack, separating the pack while being advanced in said linear path from the following envelopes which are deposited and advanced in `said linear path, continuing advance of the pack in said linea-r path to a wrapping station, feeding wrapping material across one side ofthe pack at the wrapping station and while the pack is retained in said linear path, severing a strip from the Ina- UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,221,196 4/191'7 Lewis 93--933 X 2,873,564 y2/1959 Bogeskov 53--198 X 2,932,927 4/ 1960 Segerstrom 53-138'7 X 3,000,151 9/1961 Winkler 53-3 3,040,488 6/1962 Winkler 53-198 X FOREIGN PATENTS 678,940 7/ 1939 Germany.

ROBERT C. RIORDON, Primaryl Examiner.

BROMLEY SEELEY, FRANK E. BAILEY, Examiners. L. S. BOUCHARD, N. ABRAMS, Assistant Examiners.

UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3,350,834 November` 7, 1967 Vincent E. Heywood et al. It is hereby certified that error appears in the above numbered patent requiring correction and that the said Letters Patent should read as corrected below.

Column 16, lines 67 and 68, for "intermittently-web" read intermittently-fed web column 17, line Z8, for "thave" read have line 37, for "ase" read as line 75, for "successively collected" read successively-collected column 18, line l, for "articles, the class" read -e articles, of the class lines 20 and 73, for "successively collected", each occurrence, read successively-collected line 24, for "encountered" read encounter column 19, line l0,

for "of said release" read by said release Signed and sealed this 3rd day of December 1968. (SEAL) Attest:

EDWARD J. BRENNER Edward M. Fletcher, Jr.

Commissioner of Patents Attesting Officer

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US2873564 *Sep 9, 1957Feb 17, 1959Bogeskov Bernard EMethod for wrapping an object with adhesive tape
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3416286 *Jun 22, 1966Dec 17, 1968Smithe Machine Co Inc F LBanding machine and method
US7310922 *Sep 12, 2005Dec 25, 2007Meadwestvaco CorporationBanded envelopes and method for assembling a package of banded envelopes
US7789226Mar 17, 2006Sep 7, 2010Meadwestvaco CorporationPackaged banded envelopes
US7861862Feb 26, 2008Jan 4, 2011Meadwestvaco CorporationPackaged banded envelopes
Classifications
U.S. Classification53/399, 53/389.3, 53/586, 53/389.4, 53/228
International ClassificationB65B25/14
Cooperative ClassificationB65B25/14
European ClassificationB65B25/14