US 3388686 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
A. M COHAN June 18, 1968 DUAL FINISHING APPARATUS FOR CYLINDRICAL CONTAINERS 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Oct. 31, 1966 INVENTOR. ALVIN M. COHAN M iQ-W' Mas 43w ATTORNEYS A. M. COHAN June 18, 1968 3,388,686 1 DUAL FINISHING APPARATUS FOR CYLINDRICAL CONTAINERS 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Oct. 31, 1966 INVENTOR.
ALVIN M. COHAN A ORNEYS J1me 1968 A. M. COHAN I 3,388,686
DUAL FINISHING APPARATUS FOR CYLINDRICAL CONTAINERS Filed Oct. 31, 1966 I 4 sheets-Sheet 5 FIG.5
mvmrox ALVIN M. COHAN ATTORN 515 A. M. COHAN 'Jun 18, 1968 DUAL FINISHING APPARATUS FOR CYLINDRICAL CONTAINERS 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 Filed Oct. 51, 1966 INVENTOR.
ALVIN M. COHAN un. Md; e /Ltl ATTORNEYS United States Patent Ofice Patented June 18, 1968 3,388,686 DUAL FINISHHJG APPARATUS FOR CYLENIDRECAL CONTAINER Alvin M. Cohan, Englewood, N.J., assignor to American Production Machine Company, Union City, NJ., a corporation of New Hersey Filed Oct. 31, 1966, Ser. No. 590,672 9 Claims. (Cl. 118-4) ABSTRACT UF THE DISCLOSURE An apparatus for applying a finish simultaneously to the exterior surfaces of two cylindrical containers is shown. The apparatus includes a rotatable disk having rotatable mandrels on either side upon which containers are placed. Means for detecting whether a mandrel has a container upon it and means for retracting an empty mandrel from contact with a finishing surface are also provided. In a preferred embodiment each mandrel is provided with an eccentric inner sleeve which can be rotated to a position at which no part of the empty mandrel surface contacts the finishing surface.
Specification This invent-ion relates to a machine for applying a finish to the exterior surfaces of cylindrical containers and, in particular relates to a high speed machine capable of applying a finish to the exterior surfaces of two cylindrical containers simultaneously. The containers which are finished by the novel machine described herein are usually referred to as two piece containers; one piece consists of the cylindrical side walls and integral end and the other piece is the remaining end.
In general machines for applying a finish to these containers have comprised a turret assembly containing a plurality of mandrels upon which the cylindrical containers are supported for a finishing operation. The mandrels are cylindrical units axially rotatable. The finishing operation consists of feeding the containers onto the mandrels, rotating the turret assembly either continuously or intermittently so that the exterior surfaces of the containers are contacted with an inked printing blanket or varnish containing roller or other finishing means, and then removing the containers from the mandrels and transferring them to a conveyor for further processing.
Several problems in applying finish and container handling have limited the development of high speed machines and caused problems in operation. Heretofore, for example, it has not been possible to apply finish to more than one container at a time because of the nocanl situation discussed below. Machine speed has been limited by the spray of varnish or ink which develops at high speeds.
A no-can situation arises when a mandrel on the finishing turret is not provided with a container. This may occur for a number of commonplace reasons; there may be for example a momentary interruption in the feed of containers to the machine or a defective container may not be seated properly. If an empty mandrel is contacted by a printing blanket or coating roller its surface becomes contaminated; containers subsequently placed upon that mandrel would have their interiors contaminated and would have to be isolated and discarded from the operation. The machine downtime, the problems encountered in detecting, or, worse, in not detecting contaminated containers and the loss of materials make this situation an essential one to avoid.
In general the finishing machines have avoided contact between empty mandrels and the various finish application means by retracting the entire finishing turret from the finishin means. Such action is wasteful and slow in response to a no-can signal. It is impossible for the turret to contain two mandrels disposed for simultaneous contact with a printing blanket or varnish roller because retraction of the turret from the printing blanket or varnish roller in response to a no-can signal on one mandrel results in one container not being finished. The detection and removal of such containers is costly and makes the entire operation uneconomic. Thus the art has been faced with the problem of providing a machine capable of economically finishing the exterior surfaces of two containers simultaneously.
It is therefore an object of this invention to provide a high speed finishing machine for cylindrical containers which can finish the exterior surfaces of two cylindrical containers simultaneously and which successfully avoids the pitfalls of the no-can problem.
It is a further object of this invention to provide means for retracting the printing mandrels from the printing blankets or coating rollers so that whether a single or a dual finisher is employed the inefficiencies of moving the entire turret can be avoided.
These and other objects of this invention are achieved by the following novel design of a machine for finishing the exterior surface of two cylindrical containers simultaneously.
The central element of this dual finisher is a turret or disk which comprises a vertically oriented disk rotatable about its horizontal axis. A plurality of horizontal mandrels hereinafter to be described are disposed about an intermediate concentric circle on said disk. The mandrels are in pairs, protruding axially from the disk on opposite sides. The disk may be rotated either continuously or intermittently; in the following discussion intermittent rotation as controlled by an indexer will be shown. The rotation of the disk brings the mandrels upon which the containers are held into rolling engagement with suitable revolving inked printing blankets or coating rollers, thereby transferring a design to or otherwise coating the external surface of the containers.
In order to avoid contaminating a mandrel which is in a no-can condition, the mandrels are adapted to be retracted from the printing blankets or coating rollers. This is accomplished by means of an eccentric cylindrical sleeve located in the mandrel intermediate to an axially positioned central shaft and the outer mandrel housing which has an outer surface for carrying containers. The housing bears upon and is rotatable about the eccentric sleeve. By rotating the eccentric portion of the sleeve about the central shaft and away from the printing blanket or coating roller in response to a no-can signal the outer surface of the mandrel will not become contaminated by contact with the printing blanket or coating roller. Each mandrel is individually retractable so that a no-can condition on one mandrel will nevertheless permit the finishing of the container on the opposite side of the disk. If a single finisher is employed the mandrel only need be retracted and the cumbersome retraction of the entire turret is also avoided.
The initial position of the eccentric sleeve is adjustable in order to accurately position the outer mandrel surface with respect to the printing blanket or coating roller so that uniform rolling engagement of all mandrels during the finishing operation is secured.
Since the pressure of a printing blanket for example against the cantilever mounted mandrel tends to bend the axial shaft and provide a non-uniform pressure distribution between the mandrel and printing blanket along the length of the mandrel, means are also provided for adjusting the angular relationship between the contacting surfaces to counteract the curvature of the shaft. A towin or camber of the mandrel with respect to the printing =39 blanket is achieved by the rotationof an eccentric positioned at the end of the mandrel remote from the rotatable disk within a bearing intermediate to the shaft and the eccentric sleeve.
Havingnow generally described the invention, referonce is made to the attached drawings which show a dual printer having the aforedescribed features. Although this description is specific to a printing apparatus it is understood that it applies to other finishing operations as well.
FIG. 1 is a front elevation of the dual printer of this invention;
FIG. 2 is a side elevation of the dual printer;
FIG. 3 is a simplified view of the container feeding apparatus;
FIG. 4 is a sectional view of the mandrel;
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary side elevation of the mandrel showing a means by which the mandrel can be retracted; and
FIG. 6 is a view of the mandrel camber adjusting means.
Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, cylindrical container 19, that is containers that are completely preformed except for the presence of one top, are fed by suitable means in two parallel chutes 11 and positioned to be engaged within jaws 12 of rotating feed spiders 13 which are connected by suitable linkages to the indexer whereby the entire printing operation is controlled. The cans are positioned in V-block 14 which locates the containers concentrically with oppositely extending mandrels 21 and 22 circularly spaced along opposite sides of intermittently rotating disk 24. When the open ends of containers 16 in V-block 14 are in registery with oppositely extending mandrels 21 and 22, pusher rods 26 whose action is also controlled by the indexer securely position the containers upon the mandrels.
As is morec learly shown in FIG. .3, the printer is protected from permanent injury caused by a misalignment of container and the mandrel. Spring 3%) functions as a reflexible connection to transmit the linear motion of linkage 31 produced by barrel cam 25 to pusher rod 26. Should a misalignment of the registry between container and mandrel occur, pusher rod 26 will traverse only a portion of its normal travel with the remainder of the linear motion of linkage 31 being absorbed by an elongation of spring 36.
A proximity sensing device 28 is located on each side of disk 24 near a mandrel position preceding the printing station. These types of metal sensitive devices are well known in the art. The mandrels 21 and 22 have a nonmetallic outer coating and thus a different signal is provided if a no-can situation occurs. Other sensing devices may also be employed, but since no moving parts are involved in the proximity sensing device, it is preferred.
If no container is present on mandrel 21 or 22 the sensing device sends a signal to a suitable memory unit which follows the empty mandrel to the printing station and actuates the mandrel retraction mechanism described further below.
Disk 24 which is, for example, an eight station turret assembly (16 mandrels) rotates in a clockwise direction (as shown in FIG. 2) and presents each container carrying mandrel intermittently into rolling engagement with a constantly rotating printing blanket 18 for the decoration of the exterior surfaces of the containers. If desired, a finishing coat of varnish may be applied to the cans after the initial printing by means of an auxiliary overvarnishing roller coating device 19. If no container is present on mandrel 21 or 22 the memory unit will actuate the mandrel retraction mechanism again at the overvarnishing station.
The mandrels employed in the design of this printer can best be seen with reference to FIGS. 4 and 5. They include an eccentric sleeve 32 positioned intermediate to a hollow shaft 33 and an outer mandrel housing 34.
Hollow shaft 33 extends through disk 24 and is held rigidly therein by means of a threaded nut. Outer housing 34 has a relatively wear resistant, non-metallic container-carrying surface 37. The rotation of housing 34 about sleeve 32 in response to the rotary motion of printing blanket 18 during the printing operation is assured by a plurality of ball bearings 39 spaced along the eccentric sleeve. Conduit 40 within disk 24 transfers air to and from conduit 38 in hollow shaft 33 to hold the container tightly upon the mandrel during printing and to eject the container from the mandrel after the printing process has been completed. The vacuum pull or positive air flow is controlled by a rotary valve.
In those instances when no container is mounted upon mandrel 22, the electronic memory device follows the empty mandrel through the crucial index when rolling contact between the empty mandrel and the printing blanket 18 is imminent. Just prior to the printing of the empty mandrel the memory device actuates an electromagnetically driven plunger 42 whose travel is normal to the plane of disk 24. In conjunction with the rotary motion of disk 24 plunger 42 rotates lever 43 about its pinned center 44 from position A, as shown in solid lines, to position B shown in dotted lines. Slotted bracket 45 is integral with eccentric sleeve 32 and is located close to disk 24. It is engaged with pin 46. Pin 46 is positioned at the uppermost end of lever 43, and transmits the force from lever 43 to bracket 45, moving it from position A to position B. Bracket 45 is turned in opposition to the resilient forces of restraining springs 48 and 49. The turning of bracket 45 rotates eccentric sleeve 32 about tubular shaft 33 to retract outer mandrel housing 34 and its container-carrying surface 37 from contact with printing blanket 18.
At the printing station plunger 42 causes lever 43 to be in temporary position B. When disk 24 rotates the empty mandrel past the printing station, lever arm 43 passes plunger 42 and returns to its original position A under the influence of restraining springs 48 and 49. A significant advantage of this mandrel retraction apparatus is its use of the normal printing disk rotation to effect the movement of the lever arm bracket and eccentric sleeve. There is no reliance upon an independent motivating force to retract the printing turret; rather the retraction is assured with economy of efiort by the normal movement of the assembly.
Adjusting screw 51 threadedly engaged within an outwardly extendingleg of bracket 45 and dowel 52 protruding from disk 24 limit the return position of bracket 45. Set screw 51 can be adjusted individually for each mandrel thereby permitting the applied pressure between the mandrels and the printing blanket to be made uniform irrespective of minor variations in the circular positioning of the mandrels.
At the end of hollow shaft 33 remote from disk 24 a tubular eccentric 53, shown in FIG. 6, is provided to adjust the angular relationship between printing blanket l8 and outer mandrel housing 34. A toe-in or camber of the mandrel is achieved to counteract the deflection of cantilever mounted shaft 33 produced by the pressure of printing blanket 18. Eccentric 53 is provided with an axial bore 54 about which are disposed coaxial stepped surfaces 56 and 57. Stepped surface 58 is ec-centrically positioned relative to axial bore 54. Eccentric surface 58 is wedgedly secured within bearing 59 which, in conjunction with bearing 35, provides a relatively frictionfree surface upon which eccentric sleeve 32 rotates in response to a no-can signal. When a toe-in of the mandrel is desired, eccentric 53 is rotated by means of a key (not shown) inserted in the outermost edge of eccentric 53. This changes the position of eccentric surface 58 and moves bearing 59 diametrically with respect to the axis of shaft 33. Protruding fingers 98 of bearing 59 travel within a groove in the end of hollow shaft 33 which is radial to disk 24. Thus the degree of toe-in 3 is adjustable for each mandrel by the position of eccentric surface 58 within bearing 59.
From the foregoing description, it is possible for those skilled in the art to make modifications to and variations on the basic invention disclosed. Such modifications and variations, except as limited by the claims appended hereto, are deemed to be embraced within the present invention.
What is claimed is:
1. An apparatus for applying a finish to the cylindrical exterior surface of two cylindrical containers simultaneously which comprises: a rotatable disk; a plurality of rotatable mandrels extending in pairs axially of said disk and on either side thereof, said mandrels including a central shaft fixed to said rotatable disk, an axially rotatable eccentric sleeve about said central shaft, and a rotatable outer container carrying surface about said eccentric sleeve; means for applying a finish to said containers; means for feeding cylindrical containers to said mandrels; means for rotating said disk to contact said mandrels with said finishing means; means for detecting whether a mandrel has a container thereupon; means responsive to said detecting means to rotate said eccentric sleeve about said central shaft from a normal position to a temporary one whereby said outer container carrying surface may be prevented from engaging said finishing means; and means for removing containers from said mandrels. I
2. An apparatus as recited in claim 1 having a bracket secured to said eccentric sleeve and a lever rotatably mounted on said disk and engaged in said bracket, said lever being rotatable by the action of a stationary plunger and the rotation of the disk.
3. An apparatus as recited in claim 2 having means associated with said bracket to adjust the normal orientation of said eccentric sleeve about said central shaft in order to secure uniform engagement of the container carrying mandrels with the finishing means.
4. An apparatus as recited in claim 3 having adjusting screw means on said bracket, the rotational orientation of said sleeve being set by said adjusting screw means.
5. An apparatus as recited in claim 1 wherein said central shaft is provided with an inner conduit connected to vacuum and air pressure producing means, said vacuum and air pressure serving to hold containers upon said mandrel and eject them from said mandrel respectively.
6. An apparatus for applying a finish to the cylindrical exterior surface of a cylindrical container which comprises: a rotatable disk; a plurality of rotatable mandrels extending axially of said disk, said mandrels including a central shaft fixed to said rotatable disk, an axially rotatable eccentric sleeve about said central shaft and a rotatable outer container carrying surface about said eccentric sleeve; means for applying a finish to said con tainers; means for feeding cylindrical containers to said mandrels; means for rotating said disk to contact said mandrels with said finishing means; means for detecting whether a mandrel contains a container; means responsive to said detecting means to rotate said eccentric sleeve about said central shaft from a normal position to a temporary one whereby said outer container carrying surface may be prevented from engaging said finishing means; and means for removing containers from said mandrels.
7. An apparatus of the solid work contacting type for applying a finish to the cylindrical exterior surface of a cylindrical container which comprises: a rotatable disk; a rotatable mandrel extending axially of said disk, said mandrel including a central shaft fixed to said rotatable disk, an axially rotatable eccentric sleeve about said central shaft and a rotatable outer container carrying surface about said eccentric sleeve; a bearing at the outer extension of said central shaft for said eccentric sleeve, said bearing being adapted to be positioned diametrically of the axis of said shaft so as to provide a camber adjustment for said outer container carrying surface; soiid applicator means for applying a finish to said container; means for feeding a cylindrical container to said mandrel; means for rotating said disk to contact said mandrel with said finishing means and means for removing containers from said mandrel.
8. An apparatus as recited in claim 7 wherein said bearing travels Within a diametrical slot at the outer extension of said central shaft and is caused to move in said slot by an eccentric surface rotatable within said bearing.
9. An apparatus as recited in claim 8 wherein said hearing has fingers mating with the slot in said central shaft and a central bore having flatt-ed surfaces which abut said eccentric surface.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,088,542 7/ 1937 Westin.
2,244,592 6/1941 Youngs 10l40 2,326,850 8/1943 Gladfelter et al. 118-243 X 2,936,701 5/1960 Stuckberry 1l8-246 X 3,115,091 12/1963 Hakogi 19825 X 3,176,823 4/1965 DErrico 10140 X 3,209,688 10/1965 Eldred et al 10l40 X 3,306,190 2/1967 Groth l0l40 X CHARLES A. WILLMUTH, Primary Examiner.
ROBERT SMITH, Assistant Examiner.