US 3400803 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept. 10, 1968 R. LANORE 3,400,803
METHOD AND DEVICE FOR SETTING CIGARETTES SIDE BY SIDE Filed Nov. 25, 1966 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Fig.1.
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R- LANORE Sept. 10, 1968 METHOD AND DEVICE FOR SETTING CIGARETTES SIDE BY SIDE 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Nov. 25, 1966 [Ml 4510 06. & YMan/D 44 0 5 427v eA/f 15 Sept. 10, 1968 R. LANORE 3,400,803
METHOD AND DEVICE FOR SETTING CIGARETTES SIDE BY SIDE Filed Nov. 25, 1966 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 United States Patent 4 Claims. (Cl. 198-31) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Cigarettes are red longitudinally on a conveyor and accelerated to form gaps in the line. Cigarette transfer means forms two rows of cigarettes via the expedient of a transverse shaft located over the conveyor wherein planar sector means are attached to the shaft so as to form an angle with the shaft axis.
Modern cigarette making machines now in service prepare a continuous or endless rectilinear cigarette rod cut into sections of equal length which after the cutting step travel in end-to-end or abutting relationship.
Now these cigarettes have to be subsequently delivered in the form of one or two rows, according to cases, to an endless conveyor belt travelling at right angles to the direction of travel of said continuous cigarette rod.
The operation to be performed thus consists in causing the cigarettes to travel separately in a direction at right angles to their original direction of travel, While reducing to zero their original longitudinal speed.
Now this operation must take place as smoothly as possible in order to minimize losses of tobacco from the cigarette ends.
The hitherto known devices created to this end are no more consistent with the very high speeds attained by modern machines, and therefore cigarette-end losses are very considerable.
It is the object of the present invention to provide a method of and a device for avoiding this inconvenience of hitherto known methods and devices.
To this end, the method of this invention is remarkable notably in that it consists in successively applying a moderate longitudinal acceleration to each oncoming cigarette for separating same from the next cigarette, and subsequently a very gradual transverse movement, without producing any shock, while simultaneously slowing down the cigarette movement at the lowest possible rate in order very gradually to reduce its axial speed.
The device for carrying out the method broadly set tforth hereinabove comprises essentially an endless tape forming the extension of the one delivering the previously formed cigarette lrod but travelling at a slightly greater velocity (for example faster), and, parallel to, and at a level slightly below, said endless tape (but preferably such that its upper generatrix lies at a very slightly higher level), a rotary cylinder formed with longitudinal radial slots disposed at spaced angular intelvals and of a length inferior to the cigarette length, means for creating a suitable vacuum in said slots at least along certain sectors of the cylinder periphery, said cylinder revolving at a speed such that the number of slots formed therein moving past the adjacent edge of said tape in one minute equals the number of cigarettes manufactured by the machine in one minute, said device also comprising other means adapted to transfer each oncoming cigarette from the endless tape to the cylinder by imparting a slight lateral movement thereto.
If desired, the device may comprise two similar cylin- :ders rotating at half speed and disposed on either side of said endless tape, with means for alternately transferring one cigarette to one cylinder and the next cigarette to the other cylinder, and so forth.
It is clear that with this arrangement each cigarette arriving in a position registering with one of the slots of the cylinder through which a suction is created will slide over the slot and have its motion gradually retarded to a complete standstill.
In order to afford a clearer understanding of this invention and of the manner in which the same may be carried out in practice, typical forms of embodiment will now be described with reference to the accompanying diagrammatic drawings, in which:
FIGURE 1 is a plan view.
FIGURE 2 is a side elevational view.
FIGURE 3 is a cross-sectional view on a larger scale, of a first form of embodiment of the device, wherein the cigarettes are delivered to form a single row.
FIGURE 4 is a plan view and FIGURE 5 a side elevational view of another form of embodiment wherein the cigarettes are delivered to form two parallel rows.
Referring first to the form of embodiment shown in FIGURES 1 to 3 of the drawing, the cigarettes 1 travelling in abutting relationship downstream of the cutting device as shown by the arrow, penetrate into the gap formed between an endless conveyor tape 3 and a cam 2. This cam 2 consists of a metal hub embedded in a disk made of resilient material and formed with two arcuated sectors adapted to exert a very light pressure on the oncoming cigarette, the peripheral speed of this cam and of the conveyor tape 3 being in excess, for example 5%, of the delivery speed of cigarettes 1. Thus, the resulting relative spacing of the cigarettes, of a length ranging as a rule from 2%" to 3%", ranges from 0.12 to 0.20".
The cigarettes carried by the endless tape 3 are thus moved to a position in which they lie beneath a transfer member 4 revolving at a number of r.p.m. corresponding to one-half of the number Oif cigarettes delivered in one minute by the manufacturing machine. This transfer member comprises two opposite sectors 5 and 6 consisting each of a flat blade secured to the shaft 7 with a relative inclination such that during the rotation the transverse movement of the blade tips is slightly in excess to the cigarette diameter.
In the form of embodiment illustrated the side thrust takes place during degrees of the rotation performed by the transfer member which engages the cigarette shortly behind its upstream end, so that the cigarette remains parallel to itself during the side push.
Thus, the cigarette is pushed very gently during its axial feed movement, since the transverse speed impressed to the cigarette is less than one-third of its axial speed.
The blade 5 pushes every other cigarette for example towards the first sloted cylinder 8 to be described presently and blade 6 pushes the intermediate cigarettes towards the other cylinder 9.
Both hollow cylinders 8 and 9 formed with suction radial slots or ports 10 and 11 have a relatively small diameter and comprise for example each five longitudinal radial slots disposed at spaced angular intervals. These cylinders are rotatably driven in the direction of the arrow at the proper speed about a fixed tubular hub 12, 13 constituting ducts for sucking air through the cylinder slots, this fixed hub being open in the region of said slots to permit the ingress of air through these slots over about one quarter of a circle. At the end of the side push exerted by blade 5 of member 4, the cigarette registers with one of the slots 10 of cylinder 18 and the suction produced through this slot urges the cigarette thereagainst. Thus,
the cigarette is gradually slowed down and slides on the cylinder surface while remaining on the slot until its axial movement is stopped completely. The vacuum in the suction circuit is so adjusted that the travel penformed by the cigarette, from the moment it contacts the cylinder to the moment its sliding movement therealong is stopped, is as long as possible. The cylinder also acts as a cigarette transfer member since the suction is maintained until the slot is in position a (in dotted lines in FIGURE 3). The other cylinder 9 of the pair operates likewise with the cigarettes directed thereon by the other blade 6 of transfer member 4.
Then the cigarettes fall upon an endless belt conveyor 14 by sliding on fixed guide members 15 or 16.
'If desired, two rows of cigarettes may be formed on the end conveyor 14, as shown in FIGURES 4 and 5.
In this alternate form of embodiment, the acceleration cam 21 delivers the cigarettes 1 at the proper rate to the endless conveyor tape 22 and a pair of blades 23 and 24 of separate transfer members revolve at a r.p.m. value corresponding to one-half of the number of cigarettes delivered per minute. Each transfer member has a single blade, since transfer member 23 pushes every other cigarette and transfer member 24 pushes the alternate cigarette.
Registering with each transfer member 23 and 24 is a cylinder provided with suction slots, so that cylinder 25 is disposed beneath transfer member 23 and cylinder 26 beneath transfer member 24. These cylinders operate as in the preceding form of embodiment and deposit the cigarettes in two parallel rows on the end conveyor 22.
The apparatus described hereinabove are intended primarily for forming rows of cigarettes, but it would not constitute a departure from the basic principle of this invention to use these apparatus for handling other cylindrical objects or articles, notably various types of filter tips for cigarettes which are usually manufactured by fachines similar to cigarette-making machines.
Besides, the specific forms of embodiment illustrated and described herein should not be construed as limiting the invention since many modifications and variations may be brought thereto without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as set forth in the appended claims.
What I claim is:
1. A device for handling cigarettes fed at a prescribed feed rate from a prescribed feed direction comprising an endless conveyor belt operatively arranged for movement in said feed direction at a slightly higher linear speed than said prescribed feed rate, a pair of hollow, rotary cylinders operatively arranged parallel to said endless belt on opposite sides thereof and at a slightly lower level, each said rotary hollow cylinder being formed with circumferentially spaced slots of a longitudinal extent which is shorter than said cigarettes, means for applying a vacuum through said slots, and cigarette-transfer means including a transverse shaft located over said endless belt having planar sector means attached to the shaft so as to form an angle with the shaft axis and extending into the path of movement of cigarettes on said endless belt so as to be effective, upon rotation, to transfer each oncoming cigarette from said endless belt to each said cylinder.
2. A device as set forth in claim 1 wherein said cylinders revolve in opposite directions.
3. A device as set forth in claim 1 including another pair of cylinders disposed adjacent to said other pair of cylinders and effective in conjunction therewith to deliver the cigarettes in two parallel rows.
4. A device for handling cigarettes fed at a prescribed feed rate from a prescribed feed direction comprising an endless conveyor belt operatively arranged for movement in said feed direction at a slightly higher linear speed than said prescribed feed rate, at least one hollow, rotary cylinder operatively arranged parallel to said endless belt along one side thereof and at a slightly lower level, said rotary hollow cylinder being formed with circumferentially spaced slots of a longitudinal extent which are shorter than said cigarettes, means for applying a vacuum through said slots, and cigarette-transfer means including a transverse shaft located over said endless belt having at least one planar sector means attached to the shaft so as to form an angle with the shaft axis and extending into the path of movement of cigarettes on said endless belt so as to be effective, upon rotation, to transfer each oncoming cigarette from said endless belt to said cylinder by applying a slight transverse movement to each cigarette.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,039,589 6/1962 Molins 198-31 FOREIGN PATENTS 412,502 6/1934 Great Britain. 591,448 12/1934 Germany. 771,474 10/ 1934 France.
EDWARD A. SROKA, Primary Examiner.