Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3354611 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 28, 1967
Filing dateMar 17, 1964
Priority dateMar 17, 1964
Publication numberUS 3354611 A, US 3354611A, US-A-3354611, US3354611 A, US3354611A
InventorsPowell Alvin M
Original AssigneePowell Alvin M
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Packaging
US 3354611 A
Abstract  available in
Images(7)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Nov. 28, 1967 A. M. POWELL PACKAGING 7 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed March 17, 1964 R H L 3 M mw m V momfi m M 7 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR.

V 19.7 T F Nov. 28, 1967 A. M. POWELL PACKAGING Filed March 17, 1964 flcvuv M. POWELL BY Mfg-v4,

Q E Q Q 5 E Q A. M. POWELL Nov. 28, 1967 PACKAGING 7 Sheets-Sheets Filed March 17, 1964 INVENTOR. Po w EL. L

1% Wu M. @Zwm wvmh mi w m IF ATTORNEY 1967 A. M. POWELL 3,354,611

PACKAGING Filed March 17, 1964 7 Sheets-finest 4 INVENTOR :4LV/N M. POWELL WWW 7 HTTORNEY Nov. 28, 1967 A. M. POWELL PACKAGING 7 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed March 17, 1964 mmx INVENTOR. -,4/ v//v M. Po WELL HTTORNEY Nov. 28, 1967 A. M. POWELL 3,354,611

PACKAGING Filed March 17, 1964 7 Sheets-Sheet 6 E5 z f/ 28 INVENTOR. flL-v/N M. POWELL ATTORNEY Nov. 28, 1967 A. M. POWELL PACKAGING 7 Sheets-Sheet 7 Filed March 17, 1964 INVENTOR. 14L vw M. M

POWELL arrow/5) United States Patent C 3,354,611 PACKAGING Alvin M. Powell, North Caldwell, NJ. (189 Sargeant Ave., Clifton, NJ. 07013) Filed Mar. 17, 1964, Ser. No. 352,532 11 Claims. (Cl. 53-184) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Method and apparatus for forming registering recesses of like character in opposed strips of packaging material to provide commodity accommodating pockets therein.

My invention relates to packages for commodities and machines and methods for packaging the commodities for distribution.

One of the objects of my invention is to provide a machine equipped with means for forming registering recesses of like character in opposed strips of packaging material to provide commodity accommodating pouches or pockets therein during movement of the material at a constant speed and with the pockets being of a size and shape to accommodate the commodities therein with a minimum of air space adjacent the commodities.

Another object of my invention is to provide a machine of the foregoing described character equipped with spaced recess-forming units operable in synchronism to provide strips of packaging material with like recesses during movement of the strips at a constant speed with the recesses of one strip being registrable with the recesses of the other strip to define pockets for encasing the commodities.

Still another object of my invention is to provide a machine of the foregoing described character equipped with means for forming and sealing the pockets in a manner to reduce air space within the pockets and thus permit the use of commodity containing packages of a substantially reduced size.

A further object of my invention is to provide a machine equipped with means for treating packaging material to form commodity accommodating pouches or packages therein during movement of the material at a constant speed and in a manner to preclude breaking or tearing of the material during said treatment.

A still further object of my invention is to provide a method of drawing packaging material to form pockets in the material in a manner to effect a close fit of commodities contained in the pockets and to seal the pockets in close proximity to the commodities without distorting, damaging or breaking the material during sealing.

An important object of my invention resides in the method of forming recesses in opposed strips of packaging material to define pockets of a size and shape coinciding substantially with that of the commodities accommodated therein, sealing margins and portions of the strips together in immediate proximity to the pockets for reducing to a minimum the space within the pockets thereby enabling the material to be severed in close relation to the pockets to provide sections of a relatively small size containing commodities sealed within the pockets.

Another important object of my invention is to provide a method of making packages from material fed from supply rolls by subjecting the material to a preforming operation to obtain the internal shape of the commodity receiving portion of each package, and thereafter treating the material about said portion to enclose a commodity therein.

Still another important object of my invention comprehends a method of packaging commodities in individual packages made from portions of a pair of strips of packaging material by advancing the strips through preforming stations at a constant rate of travel to form recesses in the strips before they are advanced to a commodity filling station for positioning commodities in the recesses, advancing the strips from said filling station and sealing together portions of the strips surrounding the commodities in the recesses at said constant rate of travel to enclose the commodities in pockets formed by said recesses to provide sealed packages, and then separating the sealed packages.

A fuither important object of my invention is to provide a packaging machine which will permit a saving in the packaging material by the forming of smaller commodity accommodating pockets without detriment to the material.

A still further important object of my invention is to provide a packaging machine which will form more attractive, durable and uniform packages due to the absence of tears, wrinkles, cracks, and excessive bulges.

A paramount object of my invention is to provide a packaging machine which increases the production rate of packages over that obtained by other machines heretofore used.

Another paramount object of my invention is to'provide a method of drawing packaging materials to form smooth pockets of a size and shape comparable with that of the commodities to be contained in the pockets in order that no further drawing is required to close the pockets about the commodities.

A special object of my invention is to provide a package wherein opposed layers of packaging material are secured together to form margins and equally spaced from each other, between the margins, to define a commodity accommodating pocket.

Another special object of my invention is to provide a novel and improved method of forming said package during continuous movement of the packaging material at a constant speed.

Still another special object of my invention is to provide means for forming commodity receiving recesses in packaging material during continuous travel of the latter at a constant speed through said means.

A further special object of my invention is to provide coacting die units for relative movement towards and away from each other and which are operable for forming commodity receiving recesses in packaging material during continuous travel of the latter at a constant speed over a substantially linear path between the units.

A still further special object of my invention is to provide a die assembly having coacting die units of the foregoing described character for use on packaging machines of a type for packaging a commodity between layers of packaging material and which assembly is simple in construction, durable in use, eflicient in operation, and economical in manufacture.

With the above and other objects in view, as will hereinafter appear, the invention consists in the combination and arrangement of parts hereinafter set forth and illustrated in the accompanying drawings from which the several features of the invention and the advantages attained thereby will be readily understood by those skilled in the art.

Referring to the drawings wherein like reference characters designate like parts throughout the several views:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a packaging machine having my invention incorporated therein;

FIGURE 2 is a fragmentary sectional view taken substantially on the line 22 of FIGURE 1 with certain of the parts being illustrated in plan;

FIGURE 3 is a detail sectional view of the filling station and the horizontally arranged die assembly;

FIGURE 4 is a transverse sectional view taken on the line 44 of FIGURE 3 with the die units being shown in a separated position;

FIGURE 5 is a fragmentary detail sectional view taken substantially on the line 5-5 of FIGURE 4;

FIGURE 6 is a detail longitudinal sectional view taken substantially on the line 6-6 of FIGURE 2;

FIGURE 7 is a vertical sectional view of the severedstrip drawing unit, on an enlarged scale, taken on the line 77 of FIGURE 2;

FIGURE 8 is a detail vertical sectional view of one of the die assemblies illustrating a projection formed on the strip between the die members;

FIGURE 9 is a fragmentary sectional view illustrating the position of the die units immediately prior to the movement thereof towards each other;

FIGURE 10 is a view similar to FIGURE 9 but illustrating the position of the units wherein the web and female die members initially engage the strip;

FIGURE 11 is a view similar to FIGURE 10 but showing an advanced position of the units wherein a projection is formed'on the strip by the die members;

FIGURE 12 illustrates a further advanced position of the units from which the web and female die members begin to withdraw from engagement with the strip;

FIGURE 13 is a view similar to FIGURE 12 but illustrating a position of the units in which the web and female die members are entirely withdrawn from engagement with the strip;

FIGURE 14 is a fragmentary end elevation, on an enlarged scale, of the longitudinal cutting unit;

FIGURE 15 is a top plan view of one of the packages having a single pocket;

FIGURE 16 is a sectional view taken on the line 1616 of FIGURE 15; and

FIGURE 17- is a diagrammatic perspective view illustrating the driving mechanism and related components of the machine.

In the embodiment of my invention illustrated in the drawings, I provide a packaging machine 4 having a front wall 5 to which is attached upper and lower brackets 6 and 7 carrying pivoted reels 8 and 9 constituting supply units R of spirally wound ribbons, webs or strips 10 and 11, respectively, of packaging material. The material, in the present instance, is heat-scalable foil and is utilized for the. packaging of commodities, for example, relatively flat tablets or discs D which may be of a pharmaceutical content.

The machine is equipped with a pair of upper and lower die assemblies 12 and 13 for forming the strips 10 and 11 with spaced projections 14 as they travel from the reels and over vertical and horizontal linear paths through the assemblies, respectively, towards a sealing station or unit S. The walls of the projections 14 formed on the strips define cells or recesses 15 for receiving therein the discs D as hereinafter more fully disclosed. The reels have adjustable brake or tension devices 16 associated therewith for maintaining the respective strips under a desired tension during feeding from their reels to and beyond the unit S, the latter being effective for withdrawing the strips from the reels and causing their feeding or travel at a pre-established continuous and constant speed. Pairs of upper and lower guide rolls 19 are disposed adjacent the reels 8 and 9 and which rolls have trained thereabout the strips 10 and 11, respectively, to guide the strips over their paths during travel to the die assemblies.

As illustrated in FIGURE 1, the die assemblies 12 and 13 are mounted on the machine in vertical and horizontal strip receiving positions to permit vertical and horizontal feeding of the strips 10 and 11 through the assemblies from the reels 8 and 9, respectively. While in the present instance, the assemblies 12 and 13 function to simultaneously form pairs of transversely aligned and spaced projections 14 on the strips 10 and 11, respectively, it is to be understood that various components of the machine may be modified in order to vary the recesses as to number, size, and shape.

Inasmuch as the assemblies are of a duplicate construction and operation, a detailed description of one will suffice, it being understood that the reference characters indicating parts of one assembly are also used for indicating the same parts of the other assembly. Each assembly comprises male and female die units M and F, respectively, arranged to permit a strip to pass between the units over a substantially straight path for the formation of the projections 14 thereon.

As shown in FIGURE 3, the female unit F is provided with an elongated block 22 having opposite ends in which are rotatably mounted eccentrics 23 and 24 fixed to the outer ends of driven shafts 25 and 26, respectively, journaled in bearings carried by the machine to effect movement of the unit F by the eccentrics towards and away from the unit M and over a path defined by the block 22 upon counterclockwise rotation of the shafts 25 and 26. The face of the block 22, opposite the male unit M, has secured thereto, by means of screws 27, an integrally formed pair of transversely arranged female die members 28 provided with spaced die openings 29, respectively. The members 28 are formed with air vents 30 communicating with the openings 29 and the atmosphere while the ends of the openings 29, adjacent the unit M, include and are defined by bevels or countersinks 31 for a purpose which will hereinafter be understood.

As also shown in FIGURE 3, the unit M is likewise provided with an elongated block 32 having ends in which are rotatably mounted eccentrics 33 and 34 fixed to the outer ends of driven shafts 35 and 36, respectively, journaled in bearings carried by the machine for moving the block 32 by the eccentrics towards and away from the unit F and over a path defined by the block 32 upon clockwise rotation of the shifts 35 and 36. As depicted in FIGURE 1, elongated bearing supports 37 extend between the shafts 25 and 35 and the shafts 26 and 36, respectively, and have their ends provided with bearings in which the ends of said shafts are journaled to aid in maintaining the units M and F in their relative operating positions. The face 38 of the block 32, opposite the block 22, is formed with a transverse channel 39 and has positioned within the channel and against its sides elongated resilient members 40 constructed of neoprene or the like.

The members 40 engage the adjacent face of a webengaging plate 41 disposed transversely of the face 38 and function to urge the plate away from the block 32. As illustrated in FIGURE 5, the plate 41 is adjustably connected to the threaded ends of pairs of spaced retaining pins 42 slidably extending through the block. The opposite ends of the pins 42 are provided with heads 43 operable in sockets 44 formed in the face 45 of the block 32 to permit sliding of the plate relative to the block and prevent detachment of the plate from the block 32.

The block 32 is formed with a pair of transversely spaced bores 48 in which is slidably mounted push rods 49 having coincident ends diametrically reduced as at 50 and connected to male die members 51, respectively. The members 51 are normally disposed within and operable through openings 52 formed in the plate 41 with the openings 52 having a registry with the die openings 29, respectively, of the members 28. The opposite ends 53 of the push rods 49 extend out of the block and terminate in bulbiform portions, respectively, disposed in engagement with a wear plate at one end of a rocker 54. Intermediate its length, the rocker 54 is pivoted, as at 55, to a bracket 56 mounted on the face 45 at one end of the block 32.

The ends 53 of the rods 49 have fixed thereto collars 57 for engaging the ends of springs 58 sleeved about the rods and having their opposite ends disposed on seats 59 defined by sockets 60 formed in the blocks whereby the springs 58 function to maintain the rods in engagement with the rocker 54 and at the same time urge the die members 51 away from the die members 28. Adjacent the members 28, the margins of the peripheral and radial faces of the members 51 merge together to provide rounded surfaces or jointures 61 for cooperation with the countersinks 31 of the members 28 in forming the projections 14 in the strip 11 as it travels through the die assembly as hereinafter more fully disclosed. The end faces of the block 32 have connected thereto the ends of a resilient cushioning web 62 constructed of neoprene or the like and which passes over the face of the plate 41 adjacent the block 22 and is maintained in a tensioned condition by the plate. For a purpose hereinafter described, the web 62, as shown in FIGURE 4, is formed with openings 63 disposed across the die members 51, respectively.

As illustrated in FIGURE 3, the opposite end of the rocker 54 is provided with a cam roll 64 for engagement with a projecting section 65 of a cam 66 keyed to a driven cam shaft 67. The section 65 upon rotation and engagement with the roll 64 serves to pivot the rocker 54 and thus move the rods 49 against the tension of the springs 58 and the die members 51 into engagement with the web and towards the openings 29 of the members 28. The rocker is adapted to engage an adjustable stop 68 carried by the bracket 56 to limit movement of the rocker towards the cam 66 as the section 65 moves out of engagement with the roll 64. A spring 69 is interposed between the base of the bracket 56 and the rocker 54 to urge movement of the rocker towards the stop 68 upon disengagement of the roll 64 from the section 65 to effect actuation of the rods towards and in contact with the rocker by the springs 58.

During a single continuous cycle of operation of each assembly, the blocks 22 and 32 of each die unit, through the medium of their eccentrics, will move towards a position wherein the web 62 and die members 28 are spaced the farthest distance away from each other and with the strip traveling through the assembly in spaced relation with the Web 62 and die members 28 as exemplified in FIGURE 9 with respect to the assembly 13. As the blocks continue to move towards each other, the web and die members 28 will approach and engage the strip, as shown in FIGURE 10, and move in unison with the strip into their closest position relative to each other as depicted in FIGURE 11.

As the web and die members 28 reach the position shown in FIGURE 11, the section 65 of the cam 66 will at the same time actuate the rocker 54 with the result that the die members 51 are momentarily projected out of the plate 41 into engagement with the Web and the latter into engagement with the strip 11. As the die members 51 engage the web, they draw or force the engaged portions of the web and strip into the openings 29 of the die members 28 against the faces of the countersinks 31 of the members 28 and thus form the projections 14 on the strip with their respective recesses 15 as shown in FIGURES 8 and 11.

As the engaged portions of the web are forced into the openings 29, they will readily expand, by reason of the resiliency of the web and the openings 63 therein, and effect a cushioning of the strip material during the formation of the projections. This cushioning of the strip material serves to preclude rupture thereof and at the same time enables it to readily conform to the shape of the openings 29 and depth of the countersinks 31 of the die members 28. Simultaneously with the forming of the projections on the strip, the roll 64 of the rocker becomes disengaged from the section 65 of the cam 66 with the result that the die members 51 are retracted into the openings 52 of the plate 41 by the action of the springs 58. As the die members 51 are thus retracted, the blocks at the same time move the web and members 28 from the position shown in FIGURE 11 to the position depicted in FIGURE 12 from whence the strip is released from Cir 6 engagement with the web and die members 28 as the blocks move the web and members 28 away from each other to the position shown in FIGURE 13, from Which latter position succeeding like cycles of operation contlnue.

It is to be understood that the resilient members 40 function at all times to urge the plate 41 away from the block 32 and thereby maintain the web in a taut condition over the plate to clamp the strip between the web and members 2-8 during travel of the latter from and t0 the positions illustrated in FIGURES 10 and 12. While the strip is thus clamped between the Web and members 28, the plate 41 will yield in response to pressure exerted on the strip by the die members 28 beyond a predetermined degree thereby preventing rupture or other injury to the strip as it passes with the members 28 and web 62 from and to the positions shown in FIGURES 10 and 12. It is to be further understood that the web and die members move in unison with the strip and at a continuous and constant speed thereby permitting the forming of the projections without intermittent movement of the strip as it passes through the assembly and over a vertical adjustable support and guide 70 towards the sealing unit S.

A disc loading or filling unit or station L is arranged on the wall 5 of the machine, between the die assembly 13 and the sealing unit S and through which unit L passes the strip 11 provided with the projections 14 formed by the assembly 13. Secured to the machine, above the die assembly 13, is a dispensing unit or device H, for instance, a Citron comprising a hopper 71 having attached thereto a discharge chute 72 for conveying the discs D from the hopper to a dispensing roll 73 of the unit L. The chute is provided with an under or rear wall 74 connected to forwardly extending side and central walls 75 formed with spaced transversely disposed disc retaining flanges 76, respectively. The side and central walls 75 define a pair of slots through which the discs D travel to the roll 73, the latter being mounted on and rotated by a driven shaft 77 at a speed consonant with the linear speed of the strip 11. The periphery of the roll 73 is formed with circumspaced pairs of transversely aligned depressions 78 for receiving the discs D from the lower end of the chute 72. The lower end of the rear wall 74 extends downwardly about the roll 73 and terminates adajcent the strip 11 to maintain the discs in the depressions 78 until discharged therefrom by gravity in the recesses 15 of the projections 14.

Adjacent the roll 73, the machine is equipped with an escapement unit E comprising an oscillating shaft 80 which controls depositing of the discs Within the depressions 78 of the roll 73 from the chute 72. The shaft 80 has fixed thereto a pair of resilient grippers 81 operable by the shaft 80 to intermittently engage and retain the penultimate pair of discs within the chute against downward movement during one phase of the operation of the escapement unit. The shaft 80 also has fixed thereto coincident ends of a pair of escapement levers 82 which embrace the sides of the chute. The opposite ends of the levers 82 have extending therethrough an actuating pin 83 disposed between the wall 74 of the chute and the adjacent faces of the lower ends of a pair of spaced resilient escapement arms 84 having their upper ends fixed to the chute as at 85. The lower ends of the arms 84 are provided with right angularly disposed fingers S6 operable through slots formed in the wall 74 of the chute to permit the fingers S6 to engage the under faces of the lowermost discs within the chute to prevent the lowermost discs from gravitating downwardly Within the chute during another phase of the operation of the escapement mechanism.

As the shaft 89 is oscillated, the levers 82, by means of the pin 83, function to move the arms 84 and their fingers 86 in a direction away from the wall 74 of the chute and permit their return by the spring action of the arms. As the arms move away from the wall 74, the fingers 86 are withdrawn from under the lowermost discs thereby releasing them for deposit within the depressions 78 of the roll 73 by gravity. As the fingers begin to move out of engagement with the lowermost discs, the grippers 81 move into engagement with the penultimate pair of discs and serve to retain the latter stationary within the chute until the fingers are again positioned thereunder. As the fingers are moved into the chute, the grippers 81 will move away from the chute and thus release the aforesaid penultimate discs which drop onto the fingers and are supported thereon until released in the foregoing described manner by the action of the shaft 80. It is to be understood that the roll 73 is operated in synchronism with the escapement unit E whereby the discs are continuously fed into the depressions of the roll and deposited therefrom into the recesses 15 of the projections 14 of the strip 11 as the latter travels under the roll towards the sealing unit or station S. The roll 73 is rotated by the shaft 77 in a pre-established timed relation consonant with the continuous and constant linear speed of the strip 11.

The sealing unit S is disposed forwardly of the unit L and includes a frame 89 fixed to and spaced from the wall of the machine and a pair of upper and lower sealing rollers 90 and 91, respectively, disposed between the frame and wall. The rollers 90 and 91 are keyed to upper and lower driven shafts 92 and 93 for rotation thereby in opposite directions and have coincident ends journaled in upper and lower bearings 94 and 95, respectively. The lower bearings 95 are carried by and maintained in fixed relation with the wall 5 and frame 89 while the upper bearings 94 are spring loaded and slidably mounted on the wall 5 and frame 89 for urging, by the action of their springs, the upper roller 90 towards the lower roller 91. The machine is equipped with an adjustable support and vertical guide 96 extending downwardly from below the assembly 12 and terminating adjacent the roller 90 for guiding the strip to the roller 90 for movement therewith.

The rollers 90 and 91 are interiorly provided with heating elements 97 connected to a source of electrical energy (not shown) for heating the rollers to a predetermined degree for heat-sealing portions of the strips together. The circumferential faces of the rollers 90 and 91 are each provided with circumspaced transversely aligned pairs of spaced depressions 98 for receiving therein the projections 14 of the strips 10 and 11 as the strips move through the bight of the rollers. It is to be understood that the depressions of one roller are in registry with the depressions of the other roller at the respective bight positions of the rollers.

The circumferential faces of the rollers 90 and 91 are also provided with serrated or reticulated portions 99 between the depressions 98 and about their margins to effect indenting and heat-sealing of the strips together about the projections 14 as they pass between and are compressed and heated by the rollers 90 and 91. As the strips are thus sealed together, they form a laminated ribhon 100 having sealed pockets 101 each containing a disc D and which pockets are hereinafter more fully described.

While the rollers 90 and 91 function to form the laminated ribbon 100, they also serve, due to compressing the strips therebetween, to effect travel of the strips, from the reels 8 and 9, through the die assemblies 12 and 13 to the sealing unit S and thence, in the form of the laminated ribbon 100, towards a conveyor 102 attached to the machine forwardly of the unit S, the strip 11 during said travel moving through the unit L.

Adjacent the conveyor 102, the frame 89 has secured thereto a bearing bracket 103 provided with bearings in which are journaled the outer ends of a pair of spaced and oppositely rotatable upper and lower drive shafts 104 and 105, respectively, of a longitudinal cutting or slitting unit C, the shafts extending outwardly through bearings in the wall 5 of the machine. The shaft 105 has fixed thereto for rotation therewith a circular knife guide 106 positioned intermediate the width of the ribbon and formed with a circumferential shearing margin 107. Fixed on the shaft 104 and rotated thereby is a circular knife 108 having a cutting edge 109 cooperating with the margin 107 for centrally and longitudinally slitting the ribbon into lengthwise extending severed sections 110 as it passes from the sealing unit S to the conveyor 102.

Also journaled in the bracket 103 are the outer ends of a pair of spaced upper and lower drive shafts 111 and 112 of a drawing unit G for drawing the sections 110 of the ribbon 100 away from the unit S. The shafts 111 and 112 are disposed forwardly of the unit C and prejacent the conveyor 102 and extend outwardly through the wall 5 of the machine and rotate in opposite directions. As illus-- trated in FIGURE 7, the shafts 111 and 112 have mounted thereon a ternary of spaced upper and lower draw rolls 113 and 114 for tracking engagement with the upper and lower faces of the side or outer margins of the sections 110, respectively, for drawing the latter from the sealing unit S and guiding the same towards the conveyor 102, the upper rolls 113 being provided with yieldable treads 115.

The lower rolls 114 are fixed to the shaft 112 for rotation therewith while the upper rolls 113 are provided with hubs 116 fixed thereto and disposed about the shaft 111 for rotation relative thereto and therewith. Fixed to the shaft 111 for rotation therewith is a ternary of collars 117 each spaced from a side face of an adjacent hub 116. Mounted on the shaft, between the collars and their adjacent hubs 116, are coil springs 118 which apply tension to the hubs and constitute yieldable connections between the hubs and collars 117 for effecting rotation of the rolls 113 by the shaft 111. Also mounted on the shaft 111 and fixed thereto are stop rings 119 which engage the other side faces of the hubs, respectively, to prevent axial movement of the hubs relative to the shaft.

As the sections 110 pass between the rolls 113 and 114, the latter function to feed the sections of the conveyor 102 at a speed to take up any slack in the sections and thus deliver them to the conveyor in a substantially taut condition thereby precluding buckling of the sections between the conveyor and the unit S. Should the rotational speed of the rolls be too great, the springs 118 function to permit slippage of the rolls 113 relative to the sections and thereby prevent damage thereto.

Adjacent the end of the conveyor 102 and forwardly of the unit G, there is provided a shear-block 122 of a transverse cutting unit T and over which the sections 110 travel to the conveyor. Above the block 122, the wall 5 has attached thereto a pair of spaced guide plates 123 formed with inner guideways in which are slidably mounted the sides of a knife actuating slide 124 extending below the block and connected to one end of a spring 125 having its other end secured to the wall 5.

The knife actuating slide 124 has its lower end provided with a plunger-receiving opening 126 while its upper end is secured to a cam operated bar 127 having an inner portion 128 disposed through a slot in the wall 5 of the machine. The outer portion 129 of the bar 127 extends between the plates 123 and is connected to the upper end of a knife blade 130 formed on its lower end with a cutting edge 131. Laterally of the blade 130, one of the plates 123 has adjustably mounted thereon a bracket 132 formed at its lower end with a foot 133 extending over the block 122 and cooperating therewith for guiding the sections 110 across the path of the blade 130 and towards the conveyor.

In operation, the blade 130 is moved downwardly into shearing relation with the block 122 by the spring 125 thereby transversely severing the sections 110 between the pockets 101 as they pass over the block 122, and through the knife path, thus forming packages P. The packages are delivered onto the traveling belt 134 of the conveyor 102 for removal and ultimate distribution, travel of the belt 134 being etfected by means of a driven shaft 135 connected thereto. Suitable means, hereinafter made apparent, is employed for moving the blade 130 upwardly in position for the next cutting operation.

The various components of the machine are operated by suitable means, for instance, a drive mechanism, as diagrammatically depicted in FIGURE 17, arranged rearwardly of the wall and provided with an electric motor 136 as a source of power. The motor 136 is connected to and rotates a main drive shaft 137, the latter being operably connected to the heretofore described driven shafts of the various units by conventional means, such as sprockets and chains, belts and pulleys, gearing, etc. for actuating the driven shafts in timed relation at selected speeds and in predetermined directions to effect operation of the units as herein set forth.

In the mechanism, it will be noted that the eccentric shafts of the units M and F of the assembly 13 are connected to the main drive shaft 137 to elfect clockwise and counterclockwise rotation thereof, respectively, as viewed in FIGURE 1, while the same eccentric shafts of the like units of the assembly 12 are connected to the main drive shaft 137 in a manner to effect their rotation in opposite directions. Furthermore, a cam follower 138 is fixed to the shaft 86 of the escapement unit E and tracks a cam 13? keyed to the shaft 35 of the die assembly 13 for rotation therewith. As the cam 139 rotates, oscillating movement is imparted to the shaft 80 thereby operating the escapement unit E as heretofore described.

Additionally, the mechanism is provided with a jack shaft 14% operably connected to the main shaft 137 and to a cam shaft 141 which, in turn, is connected to and drives the conveyor operating shaft 135. The shaft 141 has fixed thereon a knife raising cam 142 which quickly functions, when the blade 130 is in its lower position, to engage and raise the inner portion 128 of the cam bar and thus position the blade in its raised or precutting position (as shown in FIGURE 6). When the cam bar is raised,

the slide 124 is likewise raised and thereby enables the spring actuated plunger 143 of a solenoid 144 to be projected into the opening 126 of the slide to maintain the knife in its raised position until such time as the plunger 143 is retracted out of the opening 126 by energization of the solenoid.

A switch 145 for controlling operation of the solenoid is electrically connected thereto and which switch is provided with a breaker arm 146. Fixed to the shaft 92 of the sealing unit S is a circular plate 147 provided with notches 148 in its peripheral face and which face is tracked by a roller 149 carried by the breaker arm 146. As the plate rotates, the breaker arm 146 will make and break the circuit leading from the switch to the solenoid by reason of the roller 149 moving into and out of the notches 148 of the plate. Obviously, the number of notches 148 formed on the plate 147 controls the cutting movement of the blade 130 to provide packages, each having, in the present instance, a single pocket 101 in which is contained a disc D. By substituting the plate 147 for one having a lesser number of notches, the knife will be actuated to sever the strips into packages P each containing a preselected number of pockets provided with discs as desired. Furthermore, by rendering the cutting unit C inoperative, packages may be obtained wherein the pockets of each package are arranged transversely, or transversely and lengthwise.

With reference to the package P, as shown in FIG- URES and 16, it will be noted that the opposed projections 14, which coact to form the pocket 101, are of a like size and shape and extend equal distances outwardly from the surrounding margins 150 of their respective strips. The projections are formed with radial walls 151 spaced from and disposed in substantially the same plane as the margins 150 and which walls 151 normally engage opposite sides of disc D contained in the pocket. The projections are each provided with an inclined side wall 10 152 extending at an angle of approximately 45 from the adjacent margin inwardly to its outer radial wall 151.

In the present instance, when the disc D is sealed within the pocket 101, defined by the recesses 15 of the opposed projections 14, there is formed within the pocket, as a result of the inclination of the walls 151 and the shape of the disc, a relatively small air space 153 between the disc and margins. As a result of the small air space, the size of the package, transversely as distinguished from its thickness, is materially reduced with the margins being closer to the disc. By thus forming the pocket, tearing, wrinkling, cracking, and excessive bulging of the material is precluded, while at the same time permitting the forming of a smaller commodity accommodating pocket and resultant smaller size package. Obviously, due to the inclination of the walls 152, the projections move freely out of the die members 28 as the units M and F move away from each other and the strips advance toward the units S as shown in FIGURE 13 in connection with the strip 11.

Heretofore, in accordance with the prior art, at least a 2" x 2" package having a minimum standard A" heatsealed margin was necessary to accommodate therein a 1" diameter x thick tablet or disc in order to avoid the danger of unduly stressing or breaking the marginal seal about the disc, causing wrinkling, tearing, cracking, an-d/or excessive bulging of the packaging material. In actual reduction to practice, my invention permits the use of a 1% x 1%" package as being of a sufiitcient size to accommodate therein the same 1" diameter x thick tablet or disc without the aforementioned danger and which package effects a saving of approximately 25% in packaging material. While my invention also permits the use of the standard A" heat-sealed margins, I obtain an approximate 50% reduction in the amount of free air and moisture around the disc in the sealed pocket as distinguished from a greater amount inherent in the aforesaid prior art package.

Furthermore, my invention, in the case of highly hydroscopic products packaged under rigid controlled humidity conditions, allows packaging in an atmosphere of higher relative humidity with a considerable reduction in atmospheric control costs and discomfort to packaging personnel. While I have disclosed my invention in connection with the packaging of a commodity in the form of tablets, discs or the like, it is to be understood that more than one of the commodities may be sealed within each of the pockets and be of different shapes, sizes and/or types of materials. As a result of my invention, I provide a novel and attractive package wherein the commodity is tightly and compactly sealed within the pocket of the package and its relatively fiat outer surfaces provide a background on which information and other matter may be clearly printed.

Without further elaboration, the foregoing will so fully explain the invention that others may, by applying current knowledge, readily adapt the same for use under various conditions of service. Moreover, it is not indispensable that all the features of the invention be used conjointly since they may be employed advantageously in various combinations and subcombinations.

It is obvious that the invention is not confined solely to the use herein disclosed in connection therewith as it may be utilized for any purpose to which it is adaptable. It is, therefore, to be understood that the invention is not limited to the specific construction as illustrated and described, as the same is only illustrative of the principles involved which are capable of extended application in various forms, and the invention comprehends all construction within the scope of the appended claims.

It may be feasible and advantageous to forego the employment of the webs 62 in conjunction with strips of packaging material which lend themselves to ready deformation by the action of the die members without attendant rupture or damage to the strips or projections.

i 1 Also suitable springs may be inserted between the blocks 32 and the plates 41 in lieu of the members 40 heretofore described.

What I claim is:

1. In a machine for packaging commodities in sealed pockets of packages formed from layers of packaging material; means for forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on layers of packaging material including spaced die members between which the layers travel at a continuous and constant speed, means for eccentrically moving said die members over a curved path into and out of projection forming position at a speed consonant with said first mentioned speed, and intermittently operated means associated with said first mentioned means for rendering said die members efiective for forming the projections upon the layers when said die members move into said position, means for inserting commodities into the recesses of one of the layers; and means operable for moving said layers at said speed and sealing them together about projections arranged on one layer in paired and opposed relation with those of the adjacent layer containing commodities to provide sealed pockets in packages formed from the sealed layers.

2. In a machine for packaging commodities in sealed pockets of packages formed from layers of packaging material; means for forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on layers of packaging material including spaced die members between which the layers travel at a continuous and constant speed, power means connected to said die members and operable for eccentrically moving said die members over a curved path into: and out of projection forming position at a speed consonant with said first mentioned speed, and cam operated means coordinated with said first mentioned means for rendering said die members eifective for forming the projections when said die members move into said position, means for inserting commodities into the recesses of oneof the layers; and means operable for moving said layers at said speed and sealing them together about projections arranged on one layer in paired and opposed relation with those of the adjacent layer containing commodities to provide sealed pockets in packages formed from the sealed layers.

3. In a machine for packaging commodities in sealed pockets of packages formed from layers of packaging material; means for forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on layers of packaging material including spaced die mounting units equipped with die members, respectively, between which the layers travel at a continuous and constant speed over a substantially linear path, means for eccentrically moving said units over a curved path to dispose said die members into and out of projection forming position at a speed consonant with said first mentioned speed, and cam actuated'means associated with said units for rendering said die members eliective for forming the projections upon the layers when said die members are disposed in said position by said units, means for inserting commodities into the recesses of one of the layers; and means operable for moving said layers at said speed and sealing them together about projections arranged on one layer in paired and'opposed relation with those of the adjacent layer containing commodities to provide sealed pockets in packages formed from the sealed layers.

4. In a machine for packaging commodities in sealed pockets of packages formed from strips of packaging material; means for forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on strips of packaging material including spaced die mounting units equipped with die members, respectively, and between which the strips travel at a continuous and constant speed over a substantially linear path, eccentrics connected to said units, respectively, and operable for moving said die members over a curved path into and out of projection'forming position asp ed consonant with saidfirst mentioned speed, and

cam actuated means associated with said units for rendering said die members effective for forming the projections upon the strips when said die members are moved over said curved path into said position by said units, means for inserting commodities into the recesses of one of the layers; and means operable for moving said strips at said speed and sealing them together about projections arranged on one strip in paired and opposed relation with those of the adjacent strip containing commodities to provide sealed pockets in packages formed from the sealed strips.

5. In a machine for packaging commodities in sealed pockets of packages formed from strips of packaging material; means for forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on a strip of packaging material and equipped with a pair of movable and spaced die carrying units between which the strip travels over a substantially linear path at a continuous and constant speed, said units including die members, respectively, for forming the projections, eccentric means connected to said units and operable for moving said units over eccentrically defined paths into engagement with the strip, at speeds consonant with said first mentioned speed, a period wherein said die members are disposed in a projection forming position relative to the strip, cam actuated means connected to one of said units and operable for rendering said die members effective for forming the projections on the strip when said die members are disposed in said position, means for inserting commodities into the recesses of one of the layers; and means operable for moving a pair of the strips formed with the projections at said constant speed and sealing them together about projections arranged on one strip in paired and opposed relation with those containing commodities of the adjacent strip to provide sealed pockets in packages formed from the sealed strips.

6. In a machine for packaging commodities in sealed pockets of packages formed from strips of packaging material; means for forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on a strip of packaging material includinga pair of spaced elongated blocks between which the strip travels over a substantially linear path at a continuous and constant speed, said blocks provided with fixed and movable die members, respectively, for forming the projections, a pair of eccentrics mounted in each of saidblocks and operable for moving said blocks over curved paths, defined by the movements of their eccentrics, towards and away from each other at coincident speeds consonant with said first mentioned speed to effect clamping of the strip between said blocks for a period in which said die members are disposed in a projection formingposition with the strip, earn actuated means connected to said movable die member and operable for project-ing the latter towards'said fixed die member for forming projections on the strip as said die members assume said position, means for inserting commodities into the recesses of one of the layers, and means operable for moving a pair of the strips at said constant speed and sealing them together about projections arranged on one strip inpaired and opposed relation with those of the adjacent strip containing commoditie to provide sealed pockets in packages formed from the sealed strips.

7. In mechanism for progressively forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on a strip of packaging material, a pair of spaced die units equipped with die members and between which the strip travels over a substantially linear path at a continuous and constant speed, eccentric means operable for moving said units over curved paths towards and away from each other at speeds consonant with said first mentioned speed to etfect periodic clamping of the strip between said units and dispose said die members in a projection forming position with the strip during said clamping, cam actuated means operable in timed relation with said units for rendering said I die members effective for forming the project-ions upon the strip as said die members assume said position.

8. In mechanism for progressively forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on a strip of packag ing material, a pair of spaced blocks equipped with fixed and movable die members, respectively, and between which the strip travels over a substantially linear path at a continuous and constant speed, eccentric means mounted in said blocks and operable for continuously moving said blocks over curved paths towards and away from the strip at a speed consonant with said first mentioned speed to effect periodic clamping of the strip between said blocks and dispose said die members during the clamping in a projection forming position with the strip, cam actuated means for operating said movable die member relative to said fixed die member and in timed relation with said blocks for rendering said die members eifective for forming projections upon the strip when said die members are in said position.

9. In mechanism for forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on a strip of packaging material, a pair of spaced die units equipped with male and female die members, respectively, between which the strip travels over a substantially linear path at a continuous and constant speed, cushioning means extending between said units and connected to one of said units, eccentrics connected to said units and operable for moving said units over curved paths, defined by said eccentrics, towards andaway from each other at speeds consonant with said first mentioned speed to effect periodic clamping of the strip between said cushioning means and the other unit and dispose said die members during said clamping in a projection forming position with the strip, cam actuated means for projecting said male die member against said cushioning means and forcing the latter and the strip into said female die member to thus form projections upon the strip when said die members are in said position.

10. In a machine for packaging commodities, projection forming means equipped with die members for forming recessed projections on a pair of layers of packaging material, respectively, during travel of the layers between said members at a continuous and constant speed, actuating means connected to said means for eccentrically moving the latter in a curved path and said members into projection forming positions relative to the layers, intermittently operated means effective for relatively operating said die members when in said positions to form the projections on said layers during said travel of said layers, a loading unit coordinated with said die members for depositing commodities in the recesses 5 of projections and eifecting registration of the recesses of the projections of one of the layers with those of the other layer to form pockets containing the commodities, and a sealing unit for engaging and sealing said pair of layers together about the pockets and eifective for moving said layers between said die members at said continuous and constant speed, and means for severing the sealed layers between pockets to form packages containing commodities sealed therein.

11. In mechanism for forming projections having commodity receiving recesses on a strip of packaging material; a pair of spaced elongated blocks equipped with fixed and movable die members, respectively, for forming the projections and between which members the strip travels over a substantially linear path at a continuous and constant speed, resilient cushioning means carried by one of said blocks and interposed between one of said die members and the strip to preclude rupture of the strip during forming of the projections, one of said die members provided with a projection-forming seat for receiving a portion of the strip, eccentrics mounted in each of said blocks and operable for continuously moving said blocks over curved paths, defined by the movements of their respective eccentrics, towards and away from each other at coincident speeds consonant with said first mentioned speed to effect periodic clamping of the strip against said cushioning means and between said die members for a period in which said die members are disposed in a projection-forming position with the strip, cam actuated means connected to said movable die member and operable for projecting the latter towards said fixed die member to force said cushioning means and said portion into said seat to thus form projections on the strip as said die members successively assume said position.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,006,212 6/ 1935 Grabler 206-56 2,083,618 6/1937 Salfisberg 53-180 2,141,318 12/1938 Salfisberg 53-28 2,478,165 8/ 1949 Collins 18-19 2,879,635 3/1959 Brock 53-28 2,948,998 8/1960 Pfeifi'er 53-28 2,982,067 5/1961 Dakin 53-180 2,988,208 6/1961 Loew 206-56 3,129,545 4/1964 Sloan et al. 53-184 X 3,192,684 7/1965 Iannucci 53-180 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,169,093 9/ 1958 France.

ROBERT C. RIORDON, Primary Examiner.

THERON E. CONDON, Examiner.

W. T. DIXSON, N. ABRAMS, Assistant Examiners.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2006212 *Mar 26, 1934Jun 25, 1935L E ShunkPackage
US2083618 *Oct 15, 1935Jun 15, 1937Ivers Lee CoPackaging apparatus
US2141318 *Jan 19, 1937Dec 27, 1938 Rubber container manufacture
US2478165 *May 24, 1946Aug 2, 1949Owens Corning Fiberglass CorpLow-pressure molding apparatus
US2879635 *Sep 27, 1957Mar 31, 1959William Brock HerbertMethod of packaging articles
US2948998 *Feb 17, 1959Aug 16, 1960Jesse R CrossanPackaging
US2982067 *Jun 23, 1958May 2, 1961Gen Motors CorpPackaging machine
US2988208 *Dec 20, 1956Jun 13, 1961Nat Dairy Prod CorpFood package
US3129545 *Oct 11, 1960Apr 21, 1964Oscar Mayer & Company IncPackage forming apparatus and components thereof
US3192684 *Mar 12, 1962Jul 6, 1965Melikian Inc RuddApparatus for making package tapes
FR1169093A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3712021 *Apr 1, 1971Jan 23, 1973Ekco Prod IncContainer closure apparatus
US3846956 *May 2, 1973Nov 12, 1974Ferry Morse Seed CoMethod of and apparatus for making seed tape
US4012888 *Jul 31, 1975Mar 22, 1977Packaging Coordinators, Inc.Packaging apparatus for forming, filling and sealing receptacles
US4068448 *Aug 9, 1976Jan 17, 1978In-Pac CorporationSmall article packaging apparatus
US4146420 *Feb 17, 1978Mar 27, 1979Tape Inc.Rotary sealing machine for thermoplastic articles
US4329830 *Jun 5, 1980May 18, 1982Omori Machinery Co., Ltd.Method and apparatus for packaging powdery or particle-size material
US4704844 *Jul 18, 1986Nov 10, 1987Derek ManciniPackaging machine
US4793121 *Jan 2, 1987Dec 27, 1988Jamison Mark DDispensing spout pre-forming system for pouch
US4862676 *Nov 28, 1988Sep 5, 1989Inoform Equipment Ltd.Packaging machine
US5018646 *Nov 13, 1990May 28, 1991S. C. Johnson & Son, Inc.Squeezable fluid container
US5101611 *Dec 10, 1990Apr 7, 1992Smith Brothers, Ltd.Method and apparatus for forming thermally insulative and shock resistant food packaging
US5127211 *Dec 15, 1989Jul 7, 1992Twinpak, Inc.Packaging machine
US7383671 *May 6, 2005Jun 10, 2008I.M.A. Industria Macchine Automatiche S.P.A.Blistering machine for producing blister packs
US7490448 *Mar 9, 2007Feb 17, 2009Alkar-Rapidpak, Inc.Form-fill-seal web packaging system with sealing station
US20120291399 *Feb 21, 2012Nov 22, 2012Alkar-Rapidpak-Mp Equipment, Inc.Packaging apparatuses and methods
DE4329931A1 *Sep 4, 1993Mar 16, 1995Hoefliger VerpackungsforschMethod for the packaging of tablets or the like and packaging apparatus
DE4329931C2 *Sep 4, 1993Dec 7, 2000Pci Allpack GmbhVerpackungsanlage zum Abpacken von Tabletten o.dgl. in Verpackungen
EP1619127A1 *Jul 20, 2004Jan 25, 2006DOCdata Germany Berlin Optical Disc GmbHMethod for packaging of disc-shaped objects
WO1988005013A1 *Dec 17, 1987Jul 14, 1988Ampac CorpMethod and apparatus for pre-forming spout in seal flexible pouch
Classifications
U.S. Classification53/559, 425/347, 206/484
International ClassificationB65B47/00, B65B47/04
Cooperative ClassificationB65B47/04
European ClassificationB65B47/04