US 3360259 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 26, 1967 A. w. STEWART TABULATING CARD FEED Filed Sept. 21, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet l Dec. 26, 1967 w. STEWART 3,360,259
TABULATING CARD FEED Filed Sept. 21, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 2b 26 z 25 219 94 F762 INVENTOR United States Patent 3,360,259 TABULATING CARD FEED Alfred W. Stewart, New Paltz, N.Y., assiguor to Datron Systems, Inc., Mountain Lakes, N.J., a corporation of New Jersey Filed Sept. 21, 1964, Ser. No. 397,880 3 Claims. (Cl. 271-41) This invention relates generally to a tabulating card feed and more particularly to a device for feeding in sequence a plurality of tabulating cards from a stack.
Tabulating cards (punched cards) having information bearing indicia therein are generally for simplicity and ease of handling, stacked for storage both in a system and on shelf. The cards, however, when they are to be read, must be fed one at a time to a reading device. To feed such cards to a reading device individually manually is time-consuming; however, in many applications a complicated or sophisticated feeding system is not necessary.
It is the principal object of this invention to provide a simple, eflicient, unitary device for automatically feeding tabulating cards one at a time from a stack of such cards and one that is reliable and easy to operate without special skills or installation.
A further object of this invention is to provide such a card feeding device which can be used independently or in combination with other components in a system application.
It is still another object of this invention to provide a card feeding device which will feed cards one at a time from a stock and which will so feed cards of various lengths as they appear in the stock.
The invention disclosed herein is described in terms of a device to feed cards containing information in the form of the presence or absence of punched holes in predeter- "Ice shaft 19.
Synchronous drive motor is supported above base 11 in motor bracket 31 and worm wheel 32 fixed to motor drive shaft 33 meshes with worm gear 27 so that upon application of power to motor 30 worm gear 27 is rotated in a clockwise direction as seen in FIG. 2 driving shaft 19 and drive wheel 18 in a counterclockwise direction.
Drive wheel 18 has a rim of an elastomeric material 34 bonded to it, such as polyurethane or neoprene with a hardness of 40 Shore A durorneter.
Bracket supports rear rollers 36 and 37 rotatably and transversely on shafts 38 and 39 respectively with the top peripheral surface of the rear rollers in a horizontal plane slightly above the top peripheral surface of the drive wheel 18.
Front wall 12, which has transverse slot formed therein for emission of cards from the device, supports brackets 41 and 42 attached thereto by means of screws 43 and 44 which pass respectively through slots and 46 in brackets 41 and 42 into topped holes in front wall bearings can be adjusted by vertical adjustment of mined positions by way of example only; however, the
invention is not limited to this specific type card but ma be readily adapted to feed a variety of items.
A tabulating card feed embodying the invention and the method 'of using the same is described herein with reference to the drawings in-which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a card feeder constructed in accordance with the teachings of this invention;
FIG. 2 is a longitudinal sectional view of the card feeder shown in FIG. 1 taken along the line 22 in the direction of the arrows in FIGURE 3;
FIG. 3 is a horizontal sectional view taken along the line 33 in the direction of the arrows in FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a front plan View of the card feeder of FIG- URE 1;
FIG. 5 is a vertical sectional view taken along the line 55 in the direction of the arrows in FIG. 2; and
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the weight member used in operation of the card feed.
Card feed 10 includes base 11, front and rear end walls 12 and 13 respectively, and side walls 14 and 15. Each of the side walls is formed with a modified U cutout 16 which allows easy insertion or withdrawal from above of a stack of tabulating cards. The numeral 17 has been used herein to indicate the stack of cards while 17a has been used to indicate individual cards.
Drive wheel 18 is mounted on drive shaft 19 rotatably supported at its ends transversely within the unit by ball bearings 20 and 21 in bearing blocks 22 and 23 respectively. Shaft 24 is rotatably supported in bearings 25 and 26 also in bearing blocks 23 and 24, parallel to shaft 19 and in the same horizontal plane. Shaft 24 supports worm gear 27 which is fixed thereto and spur gear 28 which is fixed to worm gear 27 having its pitch circumference concentric with the pitch circumference of spur gear 28. Spur brackets 41 and 42 by means of screws 43 and 44.
A thin horizontal botom plate 52 with appropriate cutouts forthe drive wheel and rollers is supported horizontally in the unit to protect the drive mechanism from dust and other possibly damaging matter.
An adjustable throat'plate 53 formed of wear resistant hardened steel and provided with a ten degree tapered surface 54 is held in position adjacent front wall 12 by locking screws 55 which engage topped holes 56 in front wall 12. Throat plate 53 is adjustable vertically through the presence of elongated vertical screw slots 57 in the plate through which screws 55 pass, so that its bottom horizontal edge 58 can be positioned a distance above ball bearings 50 which is slightly greater than the thickness of a single card to be fed.
The throat plate is positioned so that the intersection of edge 58 and tapered surface 54 directly above the center line of ball bearings 50.
A weight 59 which is approximately the width of the distance between the side walls and a length extending from front to rear rollers is provided to be placed on top of stack 17 when the card stack is in the unit. The weight 59 is proportioned to provide its center of gravity directly over the center line of the drive wheel 18 when the front edge of the weight is adjacent front wall 12.
In use, cards to be fed are placed in the unit in a stack 17 with the leading edges of the cards adjacent throat plate 53 and weight 59 positioned on the top card with its center of gravity over the center line of the drive wheel. The bottom card rests on drive wheel 18, front roller 49 and the rear rollers 36 and 37. Power is applied to drive motor 30 causing drive wheel 18 to rotate and transporting the bottom card of the stack through the-space between throat plate 53 and ball bearings 50 and out through slot 40 in front wall 12 at a speed equal to the linear speed of the periphery of the drive wheel.
The card will advance until the back end of the card is in line with the center line of the drive wheel. At this point the card must be extracted from the feed mechanism either manually or by some exterior mechanism.
When used with the Card Reader disclosed in my copending application, the feed mechanism is secured to the case of the reader such that cards leaving the feed mechanism are in line with the entrance throat of the Reader. The linear speed of the drive wheel periphery is set so that it is exactly the same as the speed which the cards are transported through the Reader by the reader drive mechanism. Thus cards are fed in a continuous fashion with no gap in between cards from the feed mechanism through the reader mechanism.
After the trailing edge of the card is in line with drive wheel 18, it is supported in the feed mechanism by front roller 49 and ball bearings 50 so that the frictional force required to remove the card from the feed mechanism is kept to a minimum. The tapered surface 54 serves the purpose of fanning the stack of cards so that the leading edge of the bottom card is always farther forward than the card directly above it so that when the bottommost card leaves the throat area, the next card will drop in place and be fed through the throat through the action of the drive wheel. In the interval during which the bottom card is being extracted from the feed mechanism, and the trailing edge of the card travels from the center line of the drive wheel past the center line of the ball bearings, the next card is restrained by the throat plate and cannot move even though the drive wheel is still turn- When used in conjunction with my said copending application, the drive motor is in series with the entrance and exit leaf switches in the reader so that this motor will turn off automatically when the last card has passed through the reader and an external momentary switch is provided for starting the feeding cycle. When this switch is manually pressed, power is applied to the drive motor, and when the first card engages the entrance switch in the reader, the operation is thereafter aut-omatical until the last card passes through the reader.
However, when the card feeder is used otherwise, a no-card" switch may be employed in the feed mechanism so that the switch lever will raise into a depression in the bottom of the weight after the last card passes this point and the motor will be turned off.
Thus, among others, the several objects of this invention as specifically aforenoted are achieved. Obviously,
numerous changes and alterations may be made without departing from the spirit of the invention.
1. A device for feeding in sequence a plurality of tabulating cards from a stack comprising a drive means under the lowermost card of said stack, the surface of said drive means in frictional engagement with the lowermost card of said stack, said drive means being a roller driven continuously and unidirectionally by a motor, throat plate means forming an emission slot in said device through which the lowermost card in frictional engagement with said roller can be emitted, a predetermined weight adapted to be placed on the top card of the stack, said weight moving the card above said lowermost card in said stack into engagement with saiad roller upon emission of the lowermost card, said weight substantially covering the top card of the stack, with the center of gravity of the weight located vertically in line with said roller, and front and rear support means provided for supporting the card stack with the roller therebetween.
2. The device for feeding in sequence a plurality of tabulating cards from a stack of claim 1 wherein the surface of said roller is formed of an elastomeric material having a hardness of 40 Shore A durometer.
3. The device for feeding in sequence a plurality of tabulating cards from a stack of claim 1 wherein said emission slot has a lower edge substantially in the horizontal plane of said front support means and an upper edge spaced from said lower edge a distance slightly greater than the thickness of one of the cards of said stack, said throat plate means having a forward taper above said upper edge so that the leading edge of said lowermost card is further forward than the card of said stack above it.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,695,782 11/1954 Berg 27141 2,804,301 8/1957 Beman 27141 2,828,126 3/1958 Labombarde 27 1-41 X 2,880,996 4/1959 Stiles 271-41 3,073,590 1/1963 Romeo et a1 226-187 X ALLEN N. KNOWLES, Primary Examiner. M. HENSQN WQOD, JR., Examiner,