US 3438622 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 15, 1969 G. LASCHEWSKI 3,438,622.
SHEET FEEDING APPARATUS FOR BINDING MACHINES Filed Sept. 9, 1966 Fig. 7
INVENTO/F I 650m; LA 5 Cl'lfk Jk By: SU JAM '9 $1 ATTORNEY$ United States Patent 3,438,622 SHEET FEEDING APPARATUS FOR BINDING MACHINES Georg Laschewski, Neuss, Reuschenberg, Germany, assignor to Wilhelm Zilling, Duesseldorf, Germany Filed Sept. 9, 1966, Ser. No. 578,218 Claims priority, application 1Germany, Sept. 13, 1965, Z 34 Int. Cl. B42c 1/02, 1/00; B41f 13/ 64 US. Cl. 270-45 2 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A sheet feeding apparatus for operation with unfolded or prefolded supplies of sheets wherein subsequent to the folding operation, the delivery of the sheet to a conveyor is made by gravity for transport to the assembly and binding machine.
sheet feeders which place the printed sheets successively on a collecting chain conveyor which passes by the sheet feeders.
For the case of such prior art sheet feeders, where folding of the sheets prior to collection and assembly was required, such folding operations had to be completed before the sheets were placed on the feeder machines. These folding operations were frequently performed either by special sheet-folding machines or by rotary printing machines. -In certain cases, parts of sheets to be inserted into the binding machine either had no folds at all, or lacked one or more of their ultimate number of folds. For example, this is the case for wrappers, envelopes and other rotary products which have been produced on a machine lacking the so-called third fold capability. Up to this time, such parts of sheets had to be folded in "a special machine, such as a sheet or layer type folding machine, thereby introducing an additional sequence of operation into the overall production pattern.
The invention is directed at providing a sheet folding apparatus for inserting such single, unfolded sheets, or sheets prefolded into layers, into automatic assembly and binding machines. The sheet feeding apparatus of the invention is so constructed and arranged that it can be introduced at any one of a variety of sheet insertion locations, and used as a special sheet feeder for an assembly and binding machine, instead of a conventional sheet feeder. The invention also provides an apparatus which is capable of folding either individual unfolded sheets, or sheets which have been pre-folded into layers, for insertion into the binding machine, transported on a collecting chain conveyor thereto.
Essentially, the sheet feeding apparatus of the invention provides a hopper means for holding a supply of stacked sheets to be fed in succession to the binding machine. A sheet transfer means withdraws successive bottom sheets from the stack thereof held by the hopper means and passes the sheets to a receiving rotary sheet folding means which folds them individually and delivers the folded sheets to a support means for temporary holding thereby. The sheets held by the support means are transported to the binding machine by a conveyor means which moves relative to the support means along a path adjacent thereto. Sheets held by the support means are transferred onto the conveyor means by the action of one or more collector members arranged for movement with the conveyor means along the same path and to contact the folded sheets held on the support means to push them off therefrom for reception on the conveyor as the collector member travels past the support means along with the conveyor.
In accordance with a preferred embodiment of the invention, the sheet feeder apparatus is equipped with a folding device including a rotary folding drum and at least one roller wheel disposed for rolling contact engagement with the drum and which cooperates therewith to effect folding of the individual sheets. The folding drum and its associated roller wheels are located underneath the hopper means which holds the supply of stacked sheets. The drum and its associated rollers are arranged to rotate about axes which are oriented transversely to the movement path of the collecting chain conveyor, and at the output side of such rotary folding device there is provided a support means in the form of a rod member, or sword which is oriented generally parallel to the path of collecting conveyor movement. A suction type sheet transfer device is operated in synchronous relation with the movement of the collecting conveyor and successively reaches into the output opening of the hopper means to engage and remove successive individual bottom sheets from the stack thereof. Advantageously, gripping or clamping devices are attached to the folding drum for pressing the sheet received thereby onto the surface of the drum until the leading edge of the sheet or pro-folded layer has reached the beginning of the support rod. The operation of such gripping or clamping devices is preferably controlled in synchronism with the movement of the conveyor as is the rotation of the folding drum and roller wheels.
An angle bar member is expediently arranged for reciprocal movement in synchronism with the delivery of folded sheets from the folding device to contact each successive sheet on the rod in order to bend the overhanging portions of the sheet further inward toward the path of collecting members on the conveyor. In this Way, a more reliable contact between the collecting members and the rod-held sheets assures the removal of sheets from the rod and their reception on the conveyor with each path of a collecting member. The chances of unintentional accumulation of a plurality of sheets on the support rod are thus minimized to an insignificant degree.
It is therefore, an object of the invention to provide an apparatus for feeding sheet form printed material to a machine which assembles and binds the printed sheets together.
Another object of the invention is to provide a sheet feeding apparatus as aforesaid which is adaptable for operation with either unfolded or pre-folded supplies of sheets.
A further object of the invention is to provide a sheet feeding apparatus as aforesaid that is capable of performing folding operations upon the sheets which it feeds to the assembly and binding machine.
Still another and further object of the invention is to provide a sheet feeding apparatus of a type wherein gravity is utilized to aid the delivery of sheets to a conveyor means for transport thereby to the assembly and binding machine.
Other and further objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following detailed description and accompanyin drawing in which:
FIG. 1 is a schematic elevation view of a sheet feeding apparatus according to a preferred embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 2 is a detail view in section, of a portion of the sheet feeding apparatus shown in FIG. 1, taken along line AA therein.
Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 2, the sheet feeding apparatus F of the invention can be conveniently regarded as the combination of a hopper 1, a sheet transfer means 2, a rotary sheet folding means including a folding drum 4 and roller wheels 5 and 6, a sheet support means including a rod member 7 and an angle bar 8, a conveyor 9, and one or more collector members 10 disposed for movement wi.h conveyor 9.
The hopper 1 holds a supply of stacked sheets la which are to be fed in succession to an assembly and binding machine (not shown), hereinafter referred to as the binding machine. The bottom of hopper 1 has an outlet opening 12 adjacent to which a tilting suction type sheet transfer device 2 is pivotally arranged. This suction transfer device 2 has an aspiration inlet portion 2a which communicates through a conduit 21: with a conventional vacuum source (not shown) so that when the inlet 2a is swung into the hopper outlet 12 for contact with the bottom sheet 1b therein, said bottom sheet 1b is withdrawn from the hopper 1 and the transfer device 2 is swung away and received on the drum 4 which rotates in the direction indicated by the arrow. The swinging movement of the transfer device 2 is synchronized with the sheet intake cycle operation of the binding machine to prevent jamming accumulations of sheets in the apparatus F, and so that in a cycle-controlled manner, the leading edge of each successive bottom sheet in the stack 10 is brought to the folding drum 4.
The particular embodiment of the invention shown represents a type which is adapted for use with sheets that have been pre-folded once, along fold edge lines 13 located along the right side of hopper 1 and its outlet 12.
Below the hopper outlet 12 are located the folding drum 4 and its associated roller wheels 5 and 6, all of which rotate about axes generally perpendicular to the direction of the conveyor 9 movement path. The drum 4, as in the case of conventional rotary folding devices, is provided with a grooved surface, and wheels 5 and 6 are provided with corresponding ridge portions arranged for meshing engagement with the drum 4 groove or grooves to effect the intended sheet folding operation. Wheel 5 serves to additionally pre-fold the individual sheets carried on drum 4, and wheel 6 serves to refold such sheets.
For purposes of example, the wheels 5 and 6 are shown as mounted for rotation upon scissor-like pivotally connected legs 14a and 14b and said wheels 5 and 6 are urged into rolling contact engagement with drum 4 by a spring 11. Any other suitable conventional means (not shown) can be used to position the wheels 5 and 6 for such rolling contact engagement with drum 4.
The individual folded sheets are delivered, one at a time from drum 4 onto a support means in the form of a sword-like rod member 7. After each sheet has been passed through the drum 4 to wheel 6 rolling contact line, a clamp 3 which is mounted to the drum 4 for rotation therewith, releases the leading edge of the sheet so that the entire sheet is ejected by the rotation of drum 4 and its own inertia onto the rod member 7, and travels therealong in a direction opposite to conveyor 9 motion until the leading edge of the sheet strikes against an upwardly bent portion 7a of rod member 7, such portion 7a acting as a stopping device.
After each sheet has reached its stopping position in rod member 7, an angle bar 8 is brought down against the sheet which then lies transversely across the rod 7 in a somewhat downwardly bent attitude, hanging downwardly of its own weight into the path of the collecting members 10. These collector members 10 are attached 4 flight-wise to the conveyor 9, which can be expediently a chain type conveyor 9, and consequently as the conveyor 9 moves in the indicated direction, the collector members 10 will contact successive sheets resting on the rod member 7, and push them off onto conveyor 9 for transport to the binding machine.
The collector members 10 can be constructed as illustrated in the form of partitions which divide the conveyor 9 into a series of lengthwise sheet-carrying compartments 15. Accordingly, a plurality of sheet feeder units F can be located at various stations along the path of conveyor 9 movement in a predetermined sheetcollating order so that as each conveyor compartment passes by the sheet holder rod 7 of a feeder unit F, it receivesa sheet therefrom.
The provision of the angle bar 8 assures that the overhanging portions of each sheet delivered onto rod 7 will be turned through a bend angle of approximately 30-45 toward the path of the collector members 10, and become thus positioned for reliable push-off from the rod 7 onto the conveyor 9.
In the absence of the angle bar 8, the degree of transverse bending in sheets held on rod 7 would be dependent upon their flexibility characteristics, and while for thin, highly flexible sheets, sufiicient natural bending would be realized to achieve a certain collector 10 push-ofi, for thicker and stiffer sheets, the bending could become too little to assure reliable collector 10 push-off.
Preferably the angle bar 8 is of L-shaped cross section, and the rod 7 is of triangular cross section as illustrated in FIG. 2. This also provides a greater stabilization of the sheet on rod 7 against turning laterally with respect to the conveyor 9 path. To accommodate the free delivery of sheets onto rod 7, the angle bar 8 is preferably raised somewhat above rod 7 in synchronism with the discharge of each sheet from the drum 4, lowered into contact with the sheet on rod 7 until a collector 10 begins to push the sheet ofi rod 7, and then raised again to receive the next sheet on rod 7.
As illustrated in FIG. 1, the drum 4 and wheels 5 and 6 which are associated with the sheet folding means, are preferably arranged in underlying relation to the hopper 1 and its outlet 12, and the conveyor 9 is preferably arranged in underlying relation to both the hopper 1, and the rotary sheet folding means. In this way, the sheets on rod 7 need merely be pushed off the rod 7 and will fall under the influence of gravity into the conveyor 9 compartment 15, thus dispensing with the need to provide a more complex mechanism for transferring sheets from rod 7 into compartments 15. There is a further advantage afforded by the enbodirnent of FIG. 1, namely that except for the sheet portions hanging into the path of the collectors 10, which sheets oflFer very little resistance to the movement of the conveyor 9, there is no obstruction of the conveyor movement by any solid parts of the feeder apparatus F.
As can be appreciated from the foregoing, the invention provides a sheet feeder apparatus by which it is impossible to insert either single unfolded sheets, or sheets pre-folded layer-wise, automatically into any desired collating position on the way to the binding machine, and which permits an additional folding operation to be performed on the sheet stack used as the sheets transferred therefrom pass for delivery to the conveyor 9 for transport to the binding machine. Consequently, it is not necessary to separately process the sheet stack la to complete all folding operations before entering the feeding apparatus F.
The invention is susceptible of numerous modifications and variations as will be obvious from the description and drawings herein. However, the invention is intended to be limited only by the following claims in which I have endeavored to claim all inherent novelty.
What is claimed is:
1. In a sheet feeding apparatus for a binding machine having a hopper means for holding a supply of stacked sheets to be fed in succession to the binding machine, a sheet transfer means for withdrawing successive bottom sheets from the stack thereof held by the hopper means, a rotary sheet folding means disposed to receive sheets Withdrawn by said sheet transfer means to fold said sheets individually and to deliver such folded sheets to a support means for holding thereby, a conveyor means disposed for movement relative to said support means along a path adjacent thereto, and at least one collector member disposed for movement therewith along said path and disposed for contact With folded sheets held on said support means to remove such folded sheets therefrom for reception on the conveyor means for transport to the binding machine as said collector member travels past the support means along with the conveyor means, the improvement which comprises: a drum disposed for rotation about an axis transverse with respect to the path of conveyor means movement, and at least one roller member disposed for rotation about an axis parallel to that of the drum rotation and for rolling contact engagement with said drum to grip therebetween individual sheets withdrawn by said sheet transfer means, and to fold such sheets along a line parallel to that of the drum and roller member contact, and to deliver said folded sheets by the rotation of the drum on to said support means; a rod member extending lengthwise in generally parallel overlying relation to the movement path of the conveyor means in underlying relation to said drum to receive folded sheets delivered thereby and to support such folded sheets in a bended attitude across the rod member; and an angle bar member disposed for movement toward said rod member into a position wherein said angle bar member contacts the folded sheet bent across the rod member to bend the overhanging portions of the sheet further toward the underlying conveyor means to accommodate the removal of said sheet from the rod member by said collector member.
2. The'sheet feeding apparatus according to claim 1 wherein said angle bar member is disposed for reciprocal movement in synchronism with the rotation of said drum to cyclically assume a position of separation from the rod member to accommodate the free delivery of sheets thereupon by the drum, and a position of proximity to the rod member for contact with sheets delivered thereupon to position successive sheets for engaging contact with said collector member until removal from the rod thereby.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,226,948 5/1917 Cottrell 270--l6 X 2,845,264 7/1958 Faeber 27054 3,158,366 11/1964 Godlewski 27058 JEROME SOHNALL, Primary Examiner.
PAUL V. WILLIAMS, Assistant Examiner.
U.S. Cl. X.R. 27016, 54, 86