US 3360258 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 26, 1967 NIX I 3,360,258
' PHOTOCOPY PAPER PACKAGE Filed Nov. 25, 1966 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 FIG. 2 George F. NIX INVENTOR Dec. 26, 1967 ca. F. NIX 3,360,258
PHOTOCOPY PAPER PACKAGE Filed Nov. 25, 1966 v 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 FIG.7A
George F. Nix INVENTOR United States Patent 3,360,258 PHOTOCQPY PAPER PACKAGE George F. Nix, 9 Springdale Road, Scarsdale, N.Y. 10533 Filed Nov. 25, 1966, Ser. No. 597,009 9 Claims. (Cl. 271-18) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The present invention is concerned with prepackaged photocopy paper reservoir which serves to insure that a single sheet at a time of photocopy paper is fed into the processing segments of the photocopy machine. More particularly the package contains a stack of photocopy papers which have been modified so that the configuration of the photocopy paper sheets cooperates with its placement about a post to provide additional resistance to movement of a sheet of paper from the stack. When placed into a conventional photocopy machine, the action of the sheet feeding element of the photocopy machine cooperates with the structure of the photocopy paper package to insure that a single sheet at a time of photocopy paper is fed.
The present invention is a continuation-in-part application of Ser. No. 431,425, filed Feb. 9, 1965, in the name of George F. Nix, and entitled: Single Sheet Feed.
Summary of invention In the operation of a photocopying machine, it is necessary to feed a single sheet of photocopy paper at a time from a reservoir of photocopy paper in order that it properly be processed in the associated processing equipment. For example, it is necessary to feed individual sheets of positive and/or negative paper for processing in accordance with the mechanical design of the photocopy machine. This has presented particular problems with respect to photocopy paper since they are in general chemically treated and tend to curl somewhat with the passage of time with changes in the temperatures of the surrounding environment. When zinc oxide coated paper or other paper capable of picking up electrostatic charges is employed in dry photocopying, the very nature of the paper with respect to static charges tends to make the paper stick together, thus aggravating the problem of feeding a single sheet at a time.
Moreover, often difficulty is encountered in having the operator properly introduce photocopy paper into the feeding mechanism of the machine. The frequent changes of photocopy paper depending on the size of the copies to be made, also introduces difficulties in the operation of the machine.
In accordance with the present invention, a new and improved photocopy paper package is taught which obviates the above problems and serves to insure that a single sheet at a time of photocopy paper is fed to the photocopy machine. The improved photocopy paper package of the instant invention comprises a container containing a stack of photocopy sheets which have been modified and adapted to cooperate with a resisting structure or post positioned in the paper package itself. When the paper package is placed on the feed tray in a conventional photocopy machine the conventional sheet feeding mechanism of the machine acts in combination with the modified structure of the sheets and post which characterize the photocopy paper package to insure that a single sheet at a time is fed.
The present package of photocopy paper containing a stack of modified photocopy paper, and one or more post-like or other resisting structures is readily manufactured and sold in much the same fashion as a simple package containing a stack of sheets. However, the instant package when inserted into the feed area of a conventional machine serves in effect to modify the feeding process of the machine so as to insure that only a single sheet at a time of photocopy paper is fed thereto. Thus, standard machines need not be structurally modified and are readily adaptable to the improved feeding means afforded by the present invention. Single sheet feed is insured without requiring modification of the machine. Further, it becomes a simple matter to position the paper for feeding since it reqiures only placing of the package on the feed tray, the position of the feed sheets relative to the post, etc. having been predetermined upon manufacture of the package and not requiring the skills of an operator or the like. Additionally, change in the size of paper for further copying is readily made simply by the replacement of one photocopy paper package for another. This both cuts down unnecessary operator time as well as insuring uniform good results since no precise adjustments are required on the part of the operator. Additionally, there is less Waste of expensive paper since there is no loss thereof by removal and transferring paper from the container to the feed zone of a machine as with conventional photocopy paper packages. In the instant package, the paper will not fall or spill out of the package even with the package end open, since they are held in place by the resisting structures or posts.
In the preferred embodiment of the present invention, the photocopy sheets have one or more apertures positioned towards an end portion of the paper opposite the direction of feeding. The area between the aperture and the terminal end of the sheet is characterized by being an area of reduced resistance to lateral force as compared to other areas of the sheets. The sheets, normally in the form of a stack, are positioned about a pin or post extending through the apertures of the sheets and preferably fixed to the overall container package. At least a portion of the top of the container package is removable, e.g. a perforated tear-away, or cut away so as to allow the topmost sheet to be gripped by the conventional feeding mechanism of a photocopying machine. When the package is placed on a feed tray in the photocopy machine, the feeding means thereof, i.e. roller, grippers or the like, is placed in contact with the topmost sheet in the photocopy paper package. Its movement cooperates with the foregoing configuration so as to supply a lateral force to the top-most sheet causing it to be moved away from the supporting post fixed in the package. By virtue of the area of reduced resistance to lateral force between the post position and the end of the sheet, the sheet is readily removed from the post. However, the incremental resistance to the force of the sheet feeding means afforded by the post and aperture is sufficient to insure that the feeding force feeds only the top sheet while the post holds the lower sheets in place, thereby preventing feeding of two or more sheets. The area of reduced resistance (which may be a slit or cutaway portion, etc.) in turn permits the sheet to be fed in the manner not causing distortion thereof, such as would intefere with subsequent processing steps in the photocopying machine.
In the less preferred embodiment, the photocopy paper sheets in the package may have side appendages, e.g. nibs, ears, lugs, or the like, which encounter a resisting force to their lateral movement in the direction of sheet feeding, the resisting force being overcome with respect to the top sheet by the lateral force of the feeding mechanism of the photocopying machine. This incremental force is provided either by a post-like structure positioned along the sides of the stack of sheets in the paper container, or alternatively, the resisting structure may take the form of an indented wall section of the paper container package itself which is aligned with appendages to at least in part accommodate and opposed movement thereof. In such embodiment the lateral force of the sheet feeding means pushes the top sheet past the resisting portion of the container wall section. In all of the foregoing embodiments the cross section of the appendages relative to the resisting structure are such that the resisting force can be overcome without ripping of the sheet appendages.
With reference to the preferred embodiment employing apertures in the sheet, the geometrical shape of the apertures may vary considerably, e.g. circular, rectangular, etc. The area between the aperture and the terminal end of the paper which offers reduced resistance to lateral force similarly may take various forms. Thus, for example, part of the material in this area may have been removed, e.g. a cut out portion or equivalent means for reducing resistance to lateral force. Alternatively, a slit in the sheet from the aperture to the terminal end may be employed.
As previously noted one or more posts or pins can be fixed within the photocopy paper package in order to resist movement of the photocopy paper. The post which may be made of metal, wood, plastic, or the like, is positioned through the apertures. It may take the form of a pin or vertical member or alternative forms such as helical coil extending upwardly through one set of apertures and downwardly through a second set, there being openings between the apertures and the ends of the sheet for removal of the sheets without tearing. The term posts as used in the specification and claims is not limited to purely upright structures but denotes all of the foregoing as well as equivalent structures. In all such embodiments, however, the post is an integral part of the photocopy paper package and is inserted and removed along with the photocopy paper from the machine as a unitary structure.
Photocopy paper itself can be modified in accordance with the present invention by die cutting or other techniques which will readily suggest themselves to those skilled in the art. The package container itself may be basically a conventional cardboard or other container capable of having its top-most portion open such as by removal of a perforated area, or the like, so as to be accessible to the feeding mechanism of the photocopy paper, thereby permitting the feeding mechanism to contact the top-most sheet in a stack of papers in the package.
The various aspects and modifications of the present invention will be made more clearly apparent by reference to the following description and accompanying drawings.
FIG. 1 is an exploded view of the photocopy paper package specifically illustrating the base container, stack of photocopy paper, container top, and positioning of resisting posts.
FIG. 2 illustrates an optional opaque light shield which may be placed around the package.
FIG. 3 illustrates the cooperation of the instant photocopy paper package with a conventional photocopy machine.
FIGS. 4 and 5 illustrate alternative configurations of apertures for use of reduced resistance to lateral force.
FIG. 6 depicts an arrangement wherein appendages on the side of the sheet are positioned opposite resisting posts fixed in the paper package.
FIG. 7 illustrates a system wherein the Wall of the container package provides the resistance to the movement of appendage portions of the sheets.
With reference to FIG. 1, shown therein in an exploded view, is a typical photocopy paper package of the instant invention. Basically, photocopy paper package 1 is characterized by a base portion 3 having two apertures 4 and 4' positioned therein, said apertures being adapted to receive flat head posts 12 and 12'. A stack of photocopy paper 5 is positioned in the container 1 so that posts 12 and 12 further pass through apertures 6 and 6' positioned in the photocopy paper, towards the terminal end thereof opposite the direction of movement of the sheet out of the paper package when placed in contact with the photocopy machine feed. The stack of photocopy paper is held in place by posts 12, 12 and companion screws 10 and 10'. The areas between apertures 6 and 6' designated in the drawing by 7 and 7 are reduced resistance areas to lateral movement. As shown in the drawing slits 7 and 7 are utilized to provide this reduced resistance to lateral movement away from the post position through the apertures, although it is to be understood that alternative configurations such as cut-away portions and the like may be used. The top portion of the photocopy paper package similarly has apertures 10 and 10' positioned therein, the apertures being adapted to fit over the corresponding apertures in the stack of photocopy paper 5 and base 3 of the container. Flathead screws 11 and 11 pass through apertures 10 and 10 and unite with fiathead posts to form unitary postlike structures passing through all segments of the paper package sandwich illustrated. A portion of the top 8 of the photocopy paper container is either precut or may be perforated so as to be readily removed thus exposing open area 9. At least part of the top-most sheet of the photocopy paper stack 5 can thereby be placed in contact with the conventional feeding mechanism of the photocopy paper machine when the package unit is placed on the feed tray thereof.
While the drawing illustrates the use of a combination of flathead screw and cooperating posts, alternate postlike structures can be employed. For example, a column of plastic may simply be placed through the apertures and thereafter by use of heat its terminal ends flattened to fix the posts in the photocopy paper package. The posts need not necessarily be fixed to the container top and/or bottom. Alternative structures will of course suggest themselves to those skilled in the art.
In some instances it may be desirable to maintain the photocopy paper package of FIG. 1 in an opaque light shielding element 13 as depicted in FIG. 2 in order that the photocopy paper not be exposed unduly to light, which may affect the efficacy of the photocopying process. In such case the photocopy paper package is stored in light shield 13 which may be an enclosure made of metal foil, e.g. aluminum, or a plastic bag or the like.
The photocopy paper itself may be any conventional type of photocopy paper for either dry or wet photocopying. The term photocopy paper denotes any paper which is capable of reproducing an image by chemical or physical means. Thus the term includes zinc oxide coated papers, chemically treated papers, thermographic papers and electrostatic papers, or the like, suitable for utilizing electrostatic image reproduction or thermal copying.
The cooperation of the new photocopy paper package of the instant invention with a conventional photocopy machine is illustrated in FIG. 3. While a system for making photocopies by use of a chemical treating bath is illustrated in the drawing, it should be noted that the instant invention finds application in all types of photocopying machines, electrostatic thermal-copying etc. The drawing is thus by way of illustration rather than limitation.
As shown in FIG. 3 the photocopy paper package such as illustrated in FIG. 1 is simply placed on the feed tray 32 to the photocopy machine unit. The photocopy paper package 30 when placed on a tray cooperates with feed mechanisms 14 to insure that a single sheet at a time of photocopy paper is fed for processing in the machine. Feed means 14 is in contact with top sheet 29 of the stack 35 of photocopy paper in package 30. Feed means 14 has a conventional gripping surface which contacts the top photocopy paper sheet and moves it in the direction shown in FIG. 3 towards further processing in the photocopy machine in a manner known per se. However, the lateral feeding force opposed by the feeding means 14 is opposed by the opposing forces created in the photocopy paper package by movement above the sheet from supporting post 31 positioned in the package. These opposing forces are relatively minor but provide an incremental eifect, so that the feeding force of the unit 14 is only sufiicient to move top sheet 29 from the paper stack 35 and package 30. The top sheet 29 is thus moved off and away from the post 31 by virtue of the area of reduced resistance to lateral force between the aperture through which post 31 is positioned and the terminal end of the photocopy sheet, as is illustrated in FIG. 1. Accordingly, feeding of a single sheet at a time is thereby effected.
In an otherwise typical manner, upon actuating the operation of the photocopy machine and inserting original 16 therein, as described previously, a single photocopy sheet moves in the path designated at to be contacted with the original paper. The thus treated papers are then exposed to a light source 17 which may advantageously operate in conjunction with rollers 18 and 19 to insure close contact upon further exposure. Thereafter the original is separated from the negative paper and the negative passed through the chemical bath 26.
By means of timing elements, positive paper is then placed in contact with the photo-exposed chemically treated negative sheet. The feeding of a positive paper in the system illustrated is effected in the same manner as with respect to the negative sheet, i.e. a preformed package of photocopying paper having modified sheet structures cooperating with posts positioned in the photocopy paper package. Thus the positive paper may comprise a similar photocopy paper package 21 having been placed on feed tray in the machine. The stack of photocopy paper 37 is positioned about post 22 extending through the photocopy paper package, with the area between post 22 and the terminal end of the sheet having reduced resistance to lateral force as compared to the remainder of the sheet so that the positive paper is readily removed from the support posts by virtue of gripping means 23. A positive paper is fed from the instant photocopy paper package in a single sheet at a time manner, and passed by virtue of the rollers through a chemical bath, whereafter it meets the photo-exposed negative paper and is formed into a sandwich 28. The pair of rollers 27 serves as a squeegee to press the negative and positive together and squeeze out excessive liquid. The resulting sandwich 28 is removed from the machine and the paper is peeled from each other with the resulting photocopy of the original being formed on the positive paper.
As noted previously, while the drawing illustrates a wet photocopy machine system, the instant improved photocopy paper package may be equally applied to supply a photocopy paper for electrostatic or dry photocopying machines.
FIGS. 4 and 5 illustrate typical alternative geometrical configurations of the aperture and area of reduced resistance to lateral force which characterizes preferred embodiments of the present photocopy paper package.
In FIG. 4 paper 39 has a relatively circular hole positioned in proximity to the terminal edge of the paper with a triangular or other cut for the aperture 39 to the terminal ends of photocopy paper 38 defining the area of reduced resistance to force. FIG. 5 illustrates another of the many possible sheet structures falling within the concept of the present invention. In the embodiment of FIG. 5 feed 38 has a triangular aperture 42 therein with the base portion forming along the terminal end of the sheet and being slightly inward therefrom so that channel 41 leads from the base of the triangular aperture to the terminal end of the sheet and represents the area of reduced resistance to lateral force. In all of the foregoing embodiments one or more apertures can be employed in conjunction with one or more posts positioned within the photocopy paper package. In general, in order to more evenly balance the forces applied to the sheet it is desirable to employ two poles in combination with two aperture structures.
FIGS. 6 and 7 illustrate a less desirable embodiment of the present photocopy paper package wherein sheet appendages cooperate with resisting posts or other resisting structure maintained in the photocopy paper package to give rise to the incremental force to lateral movement when the feeding elements of the photocopy paper contact the top of the photocopy paper sheet stack.
As illustrated in a top-view in FIG. 6, a reservoir of photocopy paper 47 is contained in package container 46 which has pairs of resisting posts 43 and 43' aligned in front of appendages 48 and 48' extending from the photocopy paper sheets. The posts provide incremental resistance to lateral movement of the sheet by specifically opposing the movement of the appendages on the side thereof. When placed into the feeding area of a photocopy machine the action of the sheet feeding mechanism 44, of the photocopy machine which may be any conventional type, e.g. gripping arm or roller, section feed, or the like, presses the appendages against and past resisting posts 48, 48' with the appendages bending or otherwise working its way past the posts. The lateral force of the feeder 44 is opposed by the resistance of post 43 and 43' to the forward movement of the appendages 48 and 48' extending from the sides of the sheet of paper stock thus serving to inhibit the movement of all but the top sheet 45 past resisting posts. As a result only the single top sheet is fed to the photocopy unit.
FIG. 10 depicts an alternative structure wherein the walls of the container itself cooperate with the appendages on the sides of the photocopy paper to provide the necessary incremental resistance to movement of the paper. As shown in FIG. 7, walls 52 of the container are specifically shaped so as to provide surfaces 49 and 49' which act to impede the movement of the appendages 53 and 53' along the sides of paper 50. As paper feeding means 50 moves in the direction shown, the appendages brush against corresponding abutting portions 49 and 49' of the container wall surface so that only the top-most sheet which has the most lateral force applied to it can accommodate itself past the resisting portions of the wall perimeter. Thus the wall of the photocopy paper package itself acts as the resisting structure and cooperates with the appendages on the sides of the photocopy paper to insure that only a single sheet at the time of photocopy paper is fed.
Various modifications to the present photocopy paper package will suggest themselves to those skilled in the art. For example, the feed tray of the photocopy machine may be modified to better hold the paper package in place, such as by having pins or cavities to temporarily receive the positioning posts of the paper package. Alternatively, a pressure sensitive tape may be placed on the trays and the photocopy paper package held in place by pressure contact with the latter. However, in all such modifications, the entire paper package, e.g. paper sheets and positioning posts, are removable from the feed tray.
Having described the present invention, that which is sought to be patented is set forth in the following claims.
What is claimed is:
1. A package of photocopy paper comprising:
(a) a container for holding said photocopy paper,
(b) a stack of photocopy paper sheets positioned in said container,
(c) a resisting structure positioned within said container,
(d) said photocopy paper sheets having a modified structure adapted to move against said resisting structure to provide an incremental resistance to lateral feeding movement of the top sheet of said stack,
(e) the top portion of said container being adapted to permit access of an external feeding element of a photocopy machine to the top sheet of said stack of photocopy paper, said package in cooperation with said photocopy machine feeding element thereby causing a single sheet at a time of photocopy paper to be fed to said machine without requiring an operator to handle said photocopy paper.
2. The package of claim 1 wherein said container has a top portion adapted to permit access of an external feeding element of a photocopy machine to the top sheet of said stack of photocopy paper, and an end portion capable of permitting removal of said photocopy paper from said container.
3. The package of claim 1 wherein said photocopy sheets are characterized by having an aperture extending through said sheets at one end thereof, an area of reduced resistance to lateral movement being formed between said aperture and said end, said aperture being aligned and sized so as to receive a positioning post extending through said aperture, said positioning post being said resisting structure and extending through said apertures.
4. The package of claim 3 wherein said positioning post is fixed to said container.
5. The package of claim 3 wherein a resistance post is positioned within said aperture and is fixedly held to said container and said discrete photocopy sheets have a cut extending from said aperture to said end of said sheet, said cuts of said sheets being aligned and smaller in width than said positioning post so as to permit discrete removal of the top sheet of said stack upon applying a lateral force thereto in a direction opposite to said end.
6. The package of claim 5 wherein said container has a removable top portion permitting access to the top sheet of said photocopy paper when placed in the feeding area of a photocopy machine, and an end portion permitting removal of said photocopy paper.
7. The package of claim 1 in combination with a light resisting c-over for preventing light from reaching said photocopy paper when not in use.
8. The package of claim 1 wherein said sheets of said stack having an appendage positioned along the side edge therefor and in vertical alignment, said appendages being adapted to move against said resisting structure so as to provide an incremental resistance to lateral feeding movement of said sheets while of a size and shape relative to said resisting structure to permit the appendage of said top sheet to move past said resisting upon a lateral force being applied thereto while the other sheets of said stack are retained in place.
9. The package of claim 8 wherein the walls of said receptacle are shaped relative to the shape of said appendage to provide resistance to the lateral movement of sheet flow in the direction of feeding.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,429,465 9/1922 Tolg.
2,126,980 8/1938 Sears et al. -20
2,308,273 1/1943 Fleischer 229-17 2,704,599 3/1955 Tuttle et a1 206-57 2,885,112 5/1959 Villat 206-57 3,123,209 3/1964 Burket et al 206-62 3,173,537 3/1965 Doyle 206-57 3,232,478 2/1966 Thomasma et al 206-57 WILLIAM T. DIXON, JR., Primary Examiner.