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Publication numberUS3469777 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 30, 1969
Filing dateNov 29, 1967
Priority dateNov 29, 1967
Publication numberUS 3469777 A, US 3469777A, US-A-3469777, US3469777 A, US3469777A
InventorsAnderson Maynard E, Balaz Charles S, Reus John F, Thorson Sheldon E
Original AssigneeFriden Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Postage meter
US 3469777 A
Images(5)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

sepf.3o,19s9 y amngnsw mL l 3,469,777 POSTAGE METER Filed Nov. '29, 1967 5 Sheets-Sheet l Sept. 30, 1969 M, E, ANDERSQN ET Al.

5 Sheets-Sheet Filed Nov. 29, 1967 sept. 30, 1969 M, E, ANDERSQN ET AL 3,469,777

POSTAGE METER Filed Nov. 29, 1967 5 Sheets-Sheet Q IZIIJI Sepf- I30, 1969 M. E. ANDERSON ET AL 3,469,777 y POSTAGE METER 5 Sheets-.Sheet 4 Filed NOV. 29, 1967 :PIE-El A |.l'llll l Sept.'30,'l959 nmamwnlsrasona ETAL. 3,469,777

' POSTAGE METER Filed Nov. 2K9, 1967 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 United States Patent O1 lice U.S. Cl. 23S-101 12 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Apparatus for enabling a value entry of one dollar in the selection mechanism of a limited usage postage meter having but two type wheels, a unit type wheel and a tens type wheel. Normally, the selection of postage values in such a meter is restricted to from one cent to twenty cents, inclusive. However, for a desired postage value greater than twenty-cents and up to forty cents, two adjustments of the selection mechanism may be made and the two corresponding values may be printed on an envelope, one impression to the left of the first along the top edge of the envelope. If a postage value of one dollar is desired, the units type wheel is adjusted to a print position while the tens type wheel is adjusted to a 1 print position. A single impression is then caused to be made on an envelope. On the other hand, for values greater than one dollar and up to one dollar twenty cents, or two dollars, two operations of the meter are necessary, causing two impressions to be made on an envelope. The fraction of a dollar is -rst selected and printed followed by the selection and printing of one dollar. As each value is printed, that value is registered in an ascending and descending register and in the case of one dollar, the 1 is registered directly into the hundredths order numeral wheel of each register.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to postage meters, and more particularly to the selection mechanism therefor.

Many postage meters in use today are of the type having a four-bank selection, i.e., a maximum capacity of $99.99, such as disclosed in the United States Patent No. 3,107,854, issued Oct. 22, 1963. For many metered postage requirements, a meter of this size is too sophisticated and too expensive.

It has been found that for many applications a postage meter having a maximum capacity of twenty cents is adequate and, for simplicity, is hand operated. In order to enhance the desirability of such a postage meter, provision of a one dollar selection has been found suitable without departure from the simplicity of the meter selection mechanism.

SUMMARY lOF THE INVENTION Now, in accordance with the instant invention, postage values of from one cent to twenty cents may be selected and caused to be imprinted on envelopes in the upper right-hand corner. In situations wherein posta-ge of a value greater than twenty cents is desirable, for example, thirty-five cents, a selection knob is set for fifteen cents and this postage value is impressed on the envelope in the upper right-hand corner. The selection knob is again adjusted for twenty cents, which value is caused to be imprinted on the envelope to the left of the first impression, and adjacent thereto. Similarly, for a postage value of one dollar twenty cents, the twenty cents is rst selected and imprinted on the envelope, followed by the setting and selection of one dollar, which is imprinted to the left 3,469,777 Patented Sept. 30, 1969 of the first impression. Likewise, for a maximum postage of two dollars, t-he one dollar selection is imprinted twice.

In certain prior art devices, each selected postage value, when imprinted, is accumulated in an ascending register and subtracted from a predetermined amount of prepaid postage in a descending register. In each register, the ordinal tens-transfer is effected in a well-known manner, from a lower, or units, order to the adjacent higher order. However, with the instant invention, the l of each one dollar selection is registered directly in the unit dollar, or hundredths, order of the ascending and descending registers, respectively.

Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel selection mechanism for a postage meter.

It is a further object of the invention to provide a single selection means for a multi-denomination postage meter.

Other objects and advantages will be apparent from the following description of a preferred embodiment as illustrated in the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a plan view of the ascending and descending registers, selection mechanism and gearing controlled by the selection mechanism for actuation of the registers;

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary sectional elevational View of the registers and actuation mechanism for the unit dollar orders thereof, the view being taken on the plane indicated by line 2--2 in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a fragmentary plan view showing the dollar actuator rack for the unit dollar order of each register, the registers being indicated in phantom line;

FIG. 4 is a sectional detail of the selector knob, the view being taken on the plane indicated by line 4-4 of FIG. l;

FIG. 5 is a sectional view of the selector knob in the one dollar adjusted position, the view being taken on the plane indicated by line S-S in FIG. 3;

FIG. 6 is a view showing the disposition of the type characters on each of the print whels, the view being taken in the direction indicated by line 6-6 n FIG. 4;

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary sectional elevation view, showing the control for the dollar actuator, the view being taken on the plane indicated by line 7--7 of FIG. 3;

FIG. 8 is a side elevational view showing the drive mechanism and tripping device therefor;

FIG. 9 is an elevational view of the yselection gearing adjusted to a value representative position of eight;

FIG. 10 is a transverse sectional elevational view of the selection and actuator gearing;

FIG. 11 is an elevational view of the actuator gearing for the registers, the view being taken on the plane indicated by lines 11--11 of FIG. 10;

FIG. 12 is an elevational view of the drive gearing, the view being taken on the plane indicated by the lines 12-12 in FIG. 10;

FIG. 13 is a fragmentary sectional elevational view showing the drive gearing and registers actuator engaging mechanism;

FIG. 14 is an elevational view showing the selection gearing in the zero representative position of the selector knob;

FIG. 15 is a fragmentary sectional elevational view showing the drive gearing for the registers and the units order type wheel tens-transfer gear;

FIG. 16 is a view in elevation of the selection actuator gear showing the mutilated tooth portion; and

FIG. 17 is a detail in cross-section of the hundredths order dial in each register.

In metered mailing machines, postage indicia is adapted to be imprinted on letters in accordance with selected values, and the value imprinted is accumulated in an ascending register and subtracted from the amount of prepaid postage in a descending register.

In a preferred embodiment of the hand-operated postv age meter, as shown, there is included an indicia die plate (FIGS. Zand 8) having a pair of value type wheels 11 and 12 (FIGS. 1 and 6) adjustably mounted therein. Type wheel 11 is secured on shaft 13, which is rotatably supported adjacent one end in a sleeve 14 (FIG. 4) secured on frame member 15, and is journalled at its other end in the bracket 16 of the transverse frame member 17, which carries indicia plate 10. Type wheel 12 is rotatably supported on shaft 13 adjacent type wheel 11. Frame member 15, which serves to support the control mechanism of the meter, is secured on meter base 18 in spaced parallel relationship to frame member 19 (FIGS. 1 and 3) also secured on base 18. Each of the registers, the ascending register 24 and descending register 25, is suitably supported in the auxiliary framework 26, secured between frame members and 19 (FIG. 1).

Selective adjustment of the value type wheels 11 and 12 is under the control of the selector 27, having the values "00 to 20 arranged circumferentially on the peripheral surface thereof (FIGS. 1, 3 and 4). Knob 27 is secured to one end of a stub shaft 28, being rotatable and axially slidable within a tubular extension 29 of a boss 30 formed on frame member 15. Also secured on shaft 28 is twenty-two tooth gear 31, having its hub 32 adjacent the inner face of knob 27. Normally, knob 27 and gear 31 are urged to the right, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 4, by means of a compression spring 33, which encompasses the tubular extension 29 with one end of the spring bearing against the bottom surface of the counterbore in the hub portion of the gear 31 and the other end abutting a shoulder on the boss 30. The normal sp-ring urged position of the knob 27 and gear 31, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 4, is determined by the engagement of clip 34, secured in the free end of shaft 28, with the bottom surface of a suitable counter bore in the boss 30.

At its outer end, type wheel shaft 13 carries eleventooth gear 35 secured thereon and enmeshed with selector knob gear 31. For each complete or twenty-two angular increments of rotation of selector knob 27, unit cents type wheel 11 will receive two complete rotations.

It will be noted, that on the periphery of the selector knob 27 the indicated values of "00 to 20, including an incremental blank space between "09 and l0 and an incremental blank space between 19 and "20 are equiangularly disposed therearound, such an arrangement constituting twenty-two equiangularly spaced positions (FIGS. 1 and 3). Likewise, it will be noted that the unit value type wheel 11 is provided with eleven equiangularly disposed type faces thereon representing values of "0 and "1 to 9 with a type face between "9 and "0 indicating 00, as seen in FIG. 6. The 00 representation is for a purpose to be described hereinafter. The tens of cents value type wheel 12 is provided with four type faces, the angular disposition of which is identical to that of the type faces on type wheel 11. As seen in FIG. 6, the values indicated on type wheel 12 are "1 and 2, clockwise from "0 and l counter-clockwise from 0.

In order to resiliently retain selector knob 27 and unit value type wheel 11 in each adjusted position thereof, a relatively light spring (FIG. 13) is supported at its one end on bracket 41 secured on frame member 15 and at its other end in an aperture in the free end of detent lever 42, normally urging the lever 42 clockwise about pivot shaft 43, to maintain the bifurcated end portion 44 of the lever in engagement with a tooth of the gear 35. Normally, each of the value type wheels 11 and 12 is in the 0 print position, relative to the indicia die plate 10, and the selector knob 27 is in the zero representative, or 00, position, visible in a suitable window 45 in the machine over, as indicated by phantom line in FIG. 1.

When postage of "9 cents is desired, selector knob 27 is rotated clockwise, as viewed from the right in FIG. 1, until the value "09 is indicated in window 45. During such rotation of knob 27, the unit value type wheel 11 is rotated to the 9 print position. However, if a postage value of "17 cents is desired, the selector knob 27 is rotated clockwise, as viewed from ythe right in FIG. 1, from the 00 indicated position to position "17 indicated in window 45. During such rotation, the unit type wheel 11 will pass from 9 through 00 to "0 as the selector knob 27 is rotated through the blank space between the "09 and 10 indicated position. As the type wheel 11 passes through the "00 print position, the two teeth of sector 46, secured on type wheel 11 concentric therewith y(FIG. 15), imparts two increments of rotation to pinion 47 secured on one end of a sleeve rotatably supported on shaft 48, secured on frame member 15. At its other end, the sleeve carries pinion 49, secured thereon and identical to pinion 47, enmeshed with gear sector 50 secured on value type wheel 12 concentric therewith v (FIGS. 1 and 2). Thus, it can be seen that the two increments of angular rotation imparted to pinion 47 serves through pinion 49 to impart an increment of angular rotation to the tens value type wheel 12 in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 2 or counter-clockwise, as viewed in FIG. 6, to move the type wheel from the 0 print position to the l print position.

Similarly, as the selector control knob 27 is rotated from 19, through the blank space indicated on the periphery of the knob, to the 20" position, unit value type wheel 11 will have been rotated two complete revolutions to the 0 print position. Upon passing from the 9 through "00 to 0 print position, the two teeth of sector 46 will cause tens value type wheel 12 to be rotated counter-clockwise as viewed in FIG. 6, from the "0 print position to the 1 print position. Upon the second revolution of the unit value type wheel 11 and the rotation of the type wheel from the 9 to the 0 print position, a second angular increment of rotation will be imparted to the tens value type Vwheel 12, rotating the type wheel counter-clockwise (FIG. 6) from the 1 to the 2 print position thereof. The tens value type wheel 12 is resiliently retained in each adjusted print position, by means of a bail 51, rockably supported on shaft 48 (FIGS. 1 and 2), the detent nose 52 of which is normally resiliently retained between adjacent teeth of the sector 50 by means of a relatively light spring 53.

With each operation of selector knob 27 to adjust the type wheels 11 and 12 to print position, mechanism is also conditioned to effect the registration of the value in the type wheels additively in the ascending register 24 and subtractively in the descending register 25. To this end, gear 58 (FIGS. 8, 9 and 14) is rotatably mounted upon detent lever shaft 43 and is enmeshed with gear 31 on selector knob 27 and with gear sector 59 secured on shaft 60. A radial projection of gear sector 59 carries a stud 61 (FIG. 10) axially parallel to shaft 60 and rotatably supporting sleeve 62 on the respective ends of which is secured a 16-tooth pinion `63 and an 8-t0oth pinion 64. Associated with sector 59 is detent lever 65, rockably mounted on stud 66 secured on frame member 15. At its upper end, detent lever 65 is provided with the detent nose 67, which is normally resiliently retained in engagement between adjacent teeth of sector 59 by means of spring 68, `to maintain sector 59 in each predetermined adjusted position.

It will be noted that sector 59 is provided with two solid double-tooth spaces 69 and 70, double-tooth 69 corresponding to the blank position between 9 and 10 on knob 27, and the double-tooth 70 corresponding to the blank space between the "19 and 20 position on knob 27. Each of the double teeth 69 and 70 are provided for a purpose to be hereinafter described. It will be noted also that sector 59 carries stop pins 55 and 56 for engagement with the lower end portion of one leg of the U-shaped bracket 57 secured on frame member 15. By this means, pin 55 limits oscillation of sector 59 in one direction to the zero representative position, while pin 56 limits oscillation of the sector in the other direction to the 20 value setting.

Thus, it can be seen that upon a selective rotation of selector knob 27, gear 31 will impart rotation to gear 35 to effect an adjustment of type wheels 11 and 12 in accordance with the representative value appearing in the window 45. At the same time, gear 31 will be effective through idler gear 58, to impart a differential rotation to sector 59 and a planetary movement of the pinions 63 and 64, associated therewith (FIGS. 10, 1l and 12.). Pinions 63 and 64 are enmeshed with driven gear 75 and actuator gear 76, respectively. The driven gear 75 is secured on hub 77 which also carries transmission gear 78, secured thereon in axially spaced relationship to gear 75, hub 77 being rotatably supported upon the shaft 60. Actuator gear 76 is mounted contiguous with value transfer Geneva disc 79 which, in turn, is contiguous with segment gear S0 and the three members, as a unit, are secured in juxtaposed relationship on full-cycle detent wheel 81 by any suitable means, such as pins or rivets, 82 and are coaxially supported for rotation on shaft 60. The teeth of segment gear 80 (FIG. 13) are adapted to be enmeshed by the teeth of segmental drive gear 83, secured on drive shaft 84, upon counter-clockwise rocking movement of the drive shaft 84 by crank arm 85, shown in FIG. l and in phantom line in FIG. 8. In the home, or at rest position of the segmental drive gear S3, the leading edge, or Geneva locking surface, 86 of the segmental drive gear 83 is engaged with the concave Geneva portion 87 of segment gear 80, as seen in FIG. 13.

Upon rotation of selector control knob 27 from the 00 indicated position to a selected value position, rotation of gear sector 59 is efected, thereby moving pinions 63 and 64 in a clockwise direction from the position shown in FIG. 8, along the teeth of the driven gear 75 and actuator gear 76, respectively (FIGS. l1 and 12). Assuming that a postage value of 8 cents is desired, that is, 08 is indicated on knob 27, pinions 63 and 64 will be moved to the positions shown in FIGS. 9, l1 and 12. Similarly, for a 9 cent value, the pinion 64 would be moved clockwise, as viewed in FIG. 12, one tooth space further on the actuator gear 76. If a 10 cent value is desired, the pinion 64 would be moved clockwise from the position shown in FIG. 12, the equivalent of three tooth spaces of the actuator gear 76. For each angular increment of clockwise movement of the pinion 64 from the 9 to the 10 position, the angularly formed tooth 93 of actuator gear 76 will enable a one-half angular increment of rotation of the pinion 64, to compensate for the blank space on knob 27 and Ithe 00 position on type wheel 11. The same is true when a cent value is desired. During the value selection, as the pinions 63 and 64 `are moved clockwise along the teeth of the respective gears 75 and 76, the angularly formed tooth 94 on actuator gear 76 will enable a one-half angular increment of rotation of pinion 64 for each angular increment of movement of the pinion from the 19 to the 20 position. In setting a value, the pinions 63 and 64 rotate over the teeth of the respective driven gear 75 and actuator gear 76, hence there is no motion to either of these gears. For each adjustment of the selector knob 27, from one value representative position to the adjacent value representative position, pinion `64 will be rotated one tooth space as it moves along the teeth of the actuator gear 76.

A cycle of meter operation is effected by oscillating drive shaft 84 (FIG. 8). Upon rocking crank arm 85 forwardly, as viewed in FIG. l, or counter-clockwise as seen in FIG. 8, segmental drive gear 83, upon engagement of the teeth thereof with segment gear 80, will effect rotation of the gear 80 in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 13, to rotate actuator gear 76 clockwise (FIG. 12).

Normally, oscillation of crank arm 85 is prevented and can only be enabled by the insertion of an envelope 6 into printing position in the throat (FIG. 8) of the meter. As the envelope is moved into print position within throat 95, the leading edge thereof engages trip bellcrank 96 rocking the bellcrank clockwise about stud 97 on frame member 15, and away from limit stop pin 98, also secured on frame member 15. Normally, bellcrank 96 is maintained against stop pin 98 by means of a relatively light spring 99. Trip bellcrank 96 carries a pin 104 engaged in an elongated slot in one arm of the blocking lever (FIGS. 8 and 13), rockably supported on stud 66. The other arm of the lever 105 extends upwardly and rearwardly, or to the right (FIG. 13), and is provided at its end with a laterally disposed, substantially V-shaped lip 106, the top edge of which normally underlies the shoulder 107 formed in the segmental drive gear 83. In the at rest position of the drive gear 83, there is only sucient clearance maintained between the top edge of the lip 106 and the shoulder 107 to enable rocking movement of the blocking lever 105.

Referring to FIG. 13, meshing of the teeth of the segmental gear 83 with the teeth of gear segment 80 is ensured by the engagement of the Geneva locking surface 86 of drive gear 83 with the concave portion 87 of gear segment 80. kl the home position of the crank arm 85 and during the initial rocking of drive gear 83, gear segment 80 is locked against rotation. For this purpose, locking lever 108 is pivotally supported on stud 66 and one arm 109 of the lever carries a pin 110 normally engaged in a notch 114 in full-cycle detent wheel 81. The other arm 115 of the locking lever 108 carries pin 116 for engagement with the peripheral edge 117 of the sector 118 secured on drive shaft 84 adjacent segmental drive gear 83, the outer arcuate portion of the sector 118 being formed to lie in the rotation plane of drive gear 83. In order to disengage pin 110 from the notch 114 in detent wheel 81, arm 109 of the locking lever 10S is provided with projection 119 which carries pin 120 secured thereon. During the initial counter-clockwise oscillation of drive gear 83, pin 120 on lever 108 is in engagement with the arcuate surface 121 in cam block 122 secured on the inner surface of the drive gear 83. AS the peripheral edge 117 of sector 118 moves out of engagement with pin 116 on lever 108 and immediately prior to the engagement of the leading tooth of drive gear 83 with the teeth of gear segment 80, pin 120 rides up the inclined extension of the surface 121 in cam block 122, thereby rocking lever 108 counter-clockwise to remove pin 110 from notch 114.

Continuing the counter-clockwise oscillation of drive gear 83 (FIG. 13), and assuming that a setting of an 8 cent value had been made, as indicated by the position of pinions 63 and 64 in FIGS. 9, ll and l2, the clockwise rotation of actuator gear 76 will effect rotation of pinion 64, an angular increment of rotation for each of the teeth of the gear 76 over which the pinion had been previously rolled during adjustment of selector knob 27.

It will be noted that the width of the pinion 64 is sucient to span the actuator gear 76 and value transfer Geneva 79, with each of the eight teeth of the pinion 64 meshing with the teeth of the actuator gear 76. However, tooth S8 of the pinion 64 (FIG. 16) is a half a tooth in width, providing a double tooth space for engagement by the peripheral edge of the larger diametral portion 89 of the value transfer Geneva disc 79, whereby rotation of the pinions 64 and 63 is terminated.

Means are provided for preventing a cycle of meter operation when selector knob 27 is inadvertently rotated to the blank position between 09 and l0 and between 19 and 20. It will be remembered that each of these blank positions on selector knob 27 corresponds to the 00 type face on type wheel 11. Each of the angular teeth 93 and 94 of actuator gear 76 (FIG. l2) also corresponds to the respective blank spaces on selector knob 27, as well as the 00" print Wheel position, as explained hereinbefore. Similarly, each of the double teeth 69 and 70 of gear sector 59 (FIG. 8) corresponds to the respective blank positions of selector knob 27. If selector knob 27 is adjusted to either of the blank positions thereon, the detent nose 67 of the detent lever 65 (FIG. 8) will ride on the surface of the double tooth 69 or 70, thereby retaining the lever 65 in a clockwise rocked position, whereby notch 71, in the upper end of the detent lever 65, underlies tooth 72 formed in the peripheral edge of disc 73 secured on drive shaft 84. In this position of the detent lever 65, oscillation of drive shaft 84 is precluded.

Following the selective setting of the selector knob 27, for example, to 08, as indicated by the position of the pinions 63 and 64 in FIGS. 9, l1 and l2, and upon counter-clockwise oscillation of drive shaft 84 and segmental drive gear 83 (FIG. 13), the selected postage value will be transmitted to the registering mechanism. For this purpose, pinion 126 is rotatably supported on stub shaft 127, secured on one arm of lever 128, rockably mounted on the outer extended end of ascending register shaft 129. Gear 130 is enmeshed with pinion 126 and is secured on the end of register shaft 129, which shaft also has the units order register wheel 131 secured thereon. Pinion 126 enmemshed with gear 130 is of sufiicient length to span actuator gear 76 and is adapted to be engaged with transmission gear 78 (FIG. 1) with an annular groove in pinion 126 providing clearance for the teeth of actuator gear 76.

Upon initiation of a cycle of operation and immediately prior to the engagement of the teeth of segmental drive gear 83 with the teeth of gear segment 80, pinion 126 is rocked counter-clockwise from' the normally nonengaged position shown in FIG. 13 into engagement with the teeth of transmission gear 78. For this purpose, three-arm bellcrank 135 is rockably mounted on stud 136, secured on frame member 15. One arm 137 of bellcrank 135 carries pin 138 secured on the free end thereof and extending laterally through the angularly formed slot 139 in lever 128 and the angularly formed slot 140 in detent lever 141. Locking lever 141 is rockably supported on shaft 129 adjacent lever 128 and one leg of the V-shaped notch 140 in lever 141 is coextensive with the corresponding leg of the angular notch 139 in lever 128. In the normal or at rest position of levers 128 and 141, pin 138 on bellcrank 135 is disposed in the apex of each of the angular slots 139 and 140. In this position of the parts, the toothed portion 142 of locking lever 141 is engaged between adjacent teeth of pinion 126, thereby locking the pinion and the units order register dial 131 against rotation. During the initial part of the forward stroke, or counter-clockwise rocking movement of crank arm 85, the inclined surface 143 of cam block 144 engages pin 145 on and 146 of bellcrank lever 135. Cani block 144 is secured on the inner surface of segmental drive gear 83 and is effective upon engagement with pin 145 to rock bellcrank lever 135 clockwise in FIG. 13 and maintain it in its rocked position throughout the forward stroke of the gear 83. At this time, the pin 138 on bellcrank lever 135 moves along the arcuately formed leg of the slot 139 in lever 128 to effect engagement of the pinion 126 with transmission gear 78. Also, pin 138 moves along the right-hand leg of the V-shaped slot 140 in locking lever 141, releasing the nose 142 from its locking engagement with pinion 126 substantially simultaneously with the engagement of pinion 126 with transmission gear 78. Thereafter, the clockwise rotation of actuator gear 76 (FIG. 12), during the forward stroke of crank arm 85, will impart counter-clockwise rotation to pinion 64. With the rotation of pinion 64, pinion 63 (FIG. 11) is effective to cause rotation of driven gear 75 and transmission gear 78 in a clockwise direction, thereby causing an angular increment of rotation of the units order dial 131 of the ascending register 24 for each angular increment of rotation of the pinion 64 by actuator gear 76. With the exemplary setting of the selector knob 27 and the positioning of the pinions 63 and 64 as indicated in FIGS. ll and 12, the clockwise rotation of actuator gear 76 will effect eight angular increments of rotation of the pinion 64, causing similar angular increments of rotation of the units order dial 131 of the register 24. Immediately thereafter, the larger diametral portion 89 of the value transfer Geneva disc 79` will engage in the double toothed space of the pinion 64, thereby locking the pinion against further rotation.

At this time, i.e., upon completion of the forward stroke of crank arm 85, means are provided for effecting disengagement of pinion 126 from transmission gear 78. As the bellcrank is rocked clockwise in FIG. 13, to effect the engagement of the pinion 126 with transmission gear 78, pin 147 on the arm 148 of bellcrank 135 is moved downwardly into the rotational plane of the leading cam edge 149 of the sector 118. As the forward stroke of the drive gear 83 is completed, the cam edge 149 engages pin 147, imparting a counter-clockwise rocking movement to bellcrank 135 thereby moving pin 138 to the lower extremity of the left-hand legs of the V-slots 139 and 140 in respective levers 128 and 141 to disengage pinion 126- from transmission gear 78. At this time, pin 150 on arm 148 of bellcrank 135 is moved into engagement with the perimetric surface 151 of the opening 152 in drive gear 83. Upon the return stroke of the crank arm 85 and, therefore, drive gear 83, the pin 150 on bellcrank 135 is cammed into the notch in the top end of the opening 152 in drive gear 83, thereby returning bellcrank 135 to its normal position wherein pin 138 assumes the inactive position shown in FIG. 13.

As each value is registered in the units order dial 131 of the ascending register 24, a like value is registered subtractively in the descending register 25. In order to effect a like registration in the descending register 25, gear 156 (FIG. l5) is secured on the units order dial 131 of the ascending register 24 and is enmeshed with idler gear 157, rotatable on shaft 158, secured at its respective ends in frame members 15 and 19. Gear 157, in turn, is enmashed with gear 159, secured on the units order dial of the descending register 25, rotatably supported on register shaft 160. Each of the registers 24 and 25 are conventional and, together with their tenstransfer means, function in a well-known manner, i.e., upon passage of the units order dial from 9 to 0, or O to "9, the adjacent higher order dial will receive one angular increment of rotation. Thereafter, each lower order dial, upon passage from 9 to 0 or 0 to 9, will effect an increment of rotation to the next higher order dial.

Normally, when a postage value greater than 20 cents is desired, selector knob 27 is rotated so that 20 is indicated in window 45. The envelope is then inserted into the throat 95 of the meter and a `cycle of operation thereof is effected, printing the value in the upper righthand corner. The selector knob 27 is again adjusted so that the remainder of the desired value up to 20 cents is indicated in window 45. The envelope is reinserted in the throat 95 of the meter and a second cycle of operation is effected, to cause the printing of the second value to the left of the first postage impression.

With our invention, a postage value of one dollar or one dollar and a fraction thereof up to one dollar twenty cents or two dollars may be selected and caused to be imprinted on an envelope and to be entered in each of the registers. In order to adjust selector knob 27 for a one dollar postage value, the knob is rotated from a previously adjusted position counter-clockwise, as viewed from the right in FIGS. l and 3, to the 00 indicated position in window 45. At this time, each of the type wheels 11 and 12 is adjusted to its 0 print position and the gear sector 59 is returned to its home or at rest position shown in FIGS. 8 and 14. In Ithis position of the selection mechanism, a concave surface in the hub 166 of gear 58 is in a position to enable axial movement of the selector knob 27 and gear 31 to the left from the normal selection adjustment position shown in FIG. 1 to the adjustment position shown in FIG. 3. As seen in FIGS. 8 and 14, the radius of the curvature 165 in hub 166 is only slightly greater than that of the selector knob 27. It will also be noted that in any normally adjusted position of knob 27 other than the position, the hub 166 precludes axial movement of the knob to the left, in FIG. 1. Also, in the 00 indicating, or zero representative, position of the knob 27, a radially disposed slot 167 in gear 31 (FIGS. and 14) is aligned with a depending prong or finger 168 formed on the outer extended end of a bracket 169. secured on frame member 15. The prong 168 is disposed in a plane parallel to and adjacent the outer surface of the gear 31 when :selector knob 27 is in the normal adjustment position shown in FIGS. 1 and 4.

Upon lateral, or axial, movement of the control knob 27 to the left (FIGS. 1, 3 and 4) compressing spring 33, the gear 31 is disengaged from gear 58, but remains en meshed with type wheel control gear 35. At this time, the prong 168 passes through slot 167 entering a notch 170 provided in the hub 32 of the gear 31 (FIGS. 3 and 5), whereupon selector knob 27 is rotated counter-clockwise, as viewed from the right in FIGS. 3 and 4, i.e., to the position shown in FIGS. 3 and 5. The value 100 now appears in the window 45. With this last increment of rotation of selector knob 27 to the one dollar representative position, type wheel 11 (FIGS. 6 and 15) is rotated clockwise to move the 00 type face into print position. Upon such angular increment of rotation of the type wheel 11, the two-toothed segment `46 secured thereto effects rotation of pinions 47 and 49 (FIGS. 2 and 15) to impart an angular increment of rotation in a clockwise direction to type wheel 12, as Seen in FIG. 6, whereby the l type face is moved to print position. Referring to FIG. 5, it will be noted that the width of the notch 170 in hub 32 is such that only one step of movement of a selector knob 27 isl permitted in a counter-clockwise direction and any movement of the knob in a clockwise direction is precluded.

Although the l of the printed dollar value is on the tens type wheel 12, the l is registered in the hundredths order dials 171 and 172 of the ascending register 24 and descending register 25, respectively. For this purpose, a register actuator slide 175 (FIGS. 1, 2, 3 and 7) i-s disposed beneath the Ahundredths order dials of the registers 24 and 25 transversely of the axes of the registers, having its forwardly extended end 176 (FIG. 3) supported on a portion of the horizontally disposed lower plate of auxiliary frame 26. At its extremity the extended portion 176 of slide 175 is provided with an ear 177 formed downwardly at a right angle thereto for sliding movement within a rectangular opening 178 in the lower plate of the auxiliary frame 26. At its rearward end (FIG. 3), or left end, as seen in FIG. 2, actuator slide 175 is offset downwardly and is in the form of a channel, having a web 179 with anges 180 and 181 in spaced parallel relationship. Each of the flanges 180 and 181 is provided with identical horizontally-disposed and laterally aligned elongated slots 182, having the leftmost end thereof formed angularly upwardly. The downwardly offset right-end extension of yslide 175 (FIG. 7) is slidably supported on a shaft 184 engaged in the slots 182 of the anges 180 and 181, shaft 184 being journalled in frame members 15 and 19 (FIG. 1).

Normally, the rightward end of slide 175 (FIG. 7) or left end, as viewed in FIG. 2, is maintained in the inactive position shown in FIG. 2, relative to a four-tooth gear 185, secured in shaft 184 intermediate flanges 180 and 181, as seen in FIG. 1. Following the axial movement of the selector knob 27 and the adjustment thereof to 100, i.e., the one dollar value position, a roller 186, secured on the face of gear 31 (FIGS. 4, 5 and 14) engages the angularly downwardly otfset end portion 187 of a lever 188 (FIGS. 2, 3, 5 and 13) rockably supported on shaft 60. At its other end, lever 188 carries a laterally-formed ear 192 (FIGS. 1, 2, 3 and 7) which underlies the web 179 of the channel portion of actuator slide 175. Upon engagement of the roller 186 with the depending end portion 187 of lever 188, the camming angle is such that lever 188 is rocked counter-clockwise (FIG. 7), thereby moving the rightward end of the actuator slide 175 to its active position relative to gear 185.

Following the adjustment of the actuator slide 175 to its active position, and upon eliecting a cycle of meter operation by rocking crank arm 85, slide 175 is moved to the left in FIG. 7, to impart an angular increment of rotation to the hundredths order wheels 171 and 172 of the respective registers 24 and 25. As seen in FIG. 3, slide 175 is guided in its movement by the engagement of the .depending gear 177 thereon in the rectangular slot 178 in the lower plate o'f the auxiliary frame member 26. Actuating alignment of the slide 175 relative to dials 171 and 172 is maintained by the movement of the ange 180 between one end of a sleeve 193 carried on shaft 184 having its other end abutting frame member 15 and the end of the hub of gear 185.

In order to effect movement of the actuator slide 175 with the forward stroke or oscillation of crank arm 85, a gear segment 194 (FIGS. 1, 8 and 13) is secured on the outer end of shaft 184 and is enmeshed with the teeth of the drive gear 83. At the completion of the forward stroke the surface 195 of the projection 196 of gear segment 194 engages the peripheral edge 197 of the drive gear segment 83, thereby limiting movement of the register actuator slide 175. A spring 198 supported at its one end on a stud on frame member 15 and at its other end on a pin on gear segment 194 serves, upon completion of the forward stroke of the crank arm 85, to retain the surface 195 of the gear segment 194 in engagement with the surface of the peripheral edge of the drive gear 83, thereby ensuring engagement of the teeth of the gear segment 194 with the teeth of the drive gear 83 for the return stroke of crank arm 85.

As the gear segment 194 is rocked clockwise (FIGS. 8 and 13) with the forward stroke of the crank arm 85, a stub tooth 199 of gear 185 (FIGS. 2 and 7) engages a laterally oifset tooth 2.00 formed in the web 179 to initiate movement of the slide to the left in FIG. 7. Thereafter, each of the three long teeth of the gear 185 engage in the corresponding slots 201 in the web 179 to complete the actuation of the slide 175. A pair of identical resilient fingers 202 and 203 are secured on actuator slide 175, arranged in tandem and spaced one from the other in accordance with the axial `spacing of the registers 24 and 25 (FIGS. 2,- 3 and 7). The formed-over end of the angularly upwardly extended portion of each of the iingers 202 and 203 is adapted to engage a tooth of a corresponding ratchet wheel 204 and 205 integrally formed on the respective hundredths order dials 171 and 172. During the forward stroke of the crank arm to initiate a cycle of machine operation and as actuator slide is moved to the left, as seen in FIG. 7, resilient fingers 202 and 203 elect an angular increment of rotation of the respective hundredths order dials 171 and 172 in a counter-clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 2. Upon the return stroke of crank arm 85, and restoration of register actuator slide 175 to the position shown in FIG. 7, each of the resilient fingers 202 and 203 of slide 175 yield as they pass over a tooth on a respective ratchet 204 and 205.

It will be remembered that, as explained hereinbefore, the tens-transfer in each of the registers 24 and 25 is carried out in a well-known manner. As a lower order dial passes from 9 to 0 in the ascending register 24, an increment of rotation is imparted to the adjacent higher order dial. Similarly, as a lower order dial in the descending register 25 passes from 0 to 9, a single increment of rotation is imparted to the adjacent higher order dial.

Each of the hundredths order dials 171 and 172 is of conventional construction, which will enable an angular increment of rotation of the dial without rotation of the units and tens order dials and the operation of the tenstransfer mechanisms between the three dials in each register. Referring to FIGS. 1 and 17, such construction will be described brieily in connection with the unit dollar dial 171. As the adjacent lower order dial, that is, the tens or tens of cents dial is rotated from 9 to 0, an increment of rotation is imparted to gear 207 associated with the unit dollar dial 171. Gear 207 is integrally formed with the hub 208 (FIG. 17) rotatable on `shaft 129 and supporting two pawls 209 and 210 yieldably slidable within corresponding chordal slots within the hub 208. Normally, springs 211 and 212 resiliently urge the round nose of each of the respective pawls into engagement with corresponding notches formed in the inner periphery of the dial 171. Thus, it can be seen that upon such increment of rotation of the gear 207 in a clockwise direction, as viewed from the right in FIG. 1, and as seen in FIG. 17, a like increment of rotation is imparted to dial 171. When the selector knob 27 has been adjusted for a one dollar postage value and during the forward stroke of crank arm 85, the iingers 202 and 203 engage the corresponding ratchet Wheels 204 and 205, which are an integrally formed part of the respective dial portions 171 and 172, thereby effecting an increment of rotation of the dials 171 and 172. Such rotation of the dials 171 and 172 is independent of the transfer gear 206, since the clockwise rotation of the dial (FIG. 17) causes each of the pawls 209 and 210 associated therewith, to yield against the urgency of the respective springs 211 and 212. As is well-known, following each tenstransfer from the tens of cents dial to the unit dollar dial, the transfer gear 206 is locked against rotation.

The printing platen and its controls are not considered to form any part of the present invention and, therefore, are not described herein. However, the operation of the platen is controlled in a well-known manner as disclosed in Patent No. 2,344,609 issued to W. J. Hanson, Mar. 21, 1944.

What is claimed is:

1. In a printing device,

a units value type wheel selectively adjustable to each of eleven printing positions represented by equiangularly spaced type characters to 9 on the periphery thereof including 0 interposed between 9 and 0,

a tens value type wheel having at least type characters 1, 0, 1 and 2 equiangularly spaced thereon in accordance with the spacing of the type characters on said units type wheel,

a tens-transfer means associated with said value type wheels normally operable upon passage of said units value type wheel from 9 through 00 to 0 or from 0 to 0 to 00 to 9 to effect an angular increment of rotation of said tens value type wheel,

a value selection means normally adjustable in one of two directions from a zero representative position to a value representative position and in the opposite direction from a value representative position to the zero position,

means actuated by said Value selection means operable upon adjustment to each value representative position to eiect a corresponding adjustment of said units value type wheel,

a detent means for resiliently maintaining said selection means and said type wheels in each adjusted position, and

a control means operable in the zero representative position of said selection means to enable adjustment of said selection means in the other of said two directions and the operation of said actuated means to adjust said units type wheel to 00 print position Cil whereby said tens-transfer means is effective to impart an increment of rotation to said tens type wheel.

2. In a device of the character described in claim 1 wherein said value selection means comprises a rotatable and axially movable selector member having a plurality of value representative positions including a blank position between each 9 to 0 unit representation and a zero representative position equiangularly arranged on the periphery thereof, each blank position corresponding to the 00 print position of the said units value type wheel and the zero representative position corresponding to the 0 print position of the type wheels, said selector member being normally rotatable in said one direction to each of the plurality of value representative positions efecting operation of said actuated means for a corresponding adjustment of said type wheels and enabled by said control means for axial movement and subsequent rotation in said other direction to a predetermined value representative position and adjustment of said units type wheel to the 00 print position.

3. In a device of the character described in claim 2 wherein said actuated means comprises a first gear carried by said selector member,

a shaft supporting said type wheels, said units type wheel being secured on said shaft and said tens type wheel being rotatable thereon, and

a second gear carried by said shaft and enmeshed with said rst gear to control the adjustment of said type wheels in accordance with the angular rotation of said selector member.

4. In a device of the character described in claim 3 wherein said control means comprises a fixed member operable to prevent axial movement of said selector member upon rotation thereof to a value representative position, said first gear having a radially disposed slot therein adapted for alignment with said xed member in the zero representative position of said selector member to enable axial movement of said selector member and rotation thereof in said other direction to said predetermined value position.

5. In a printing device,

a units of cents type wheel selectively adjustable to each of eleven print positions represented by equiangularly 4spaced type characters 0 to 9 and 00,

a tens of cents type wheel having at least type characters 1, 0, 1 equiangularly spaced thereon,

a tens-transfer means normally operable to effect an angular increment of rotation of said tens of cents type wheel upon passage of said units of cents type wheel from 9 through 00 to 0 or from 0 t0 007 69,5

a value selection means having a zero .representative position corresponding to the 0 print position of said type wheels and normally adjustable in one of two directions from said zero representative position to each of a plurality of selected value representative positions and in the opposite direction from a value representative position to said zero position, said selection means being operable upon adjustment thereof to control a corresponding adjustment of said type wheels, and

means associated with said selection means operable in the zero representative position of said selection means to enable an incremental adjustment of said selection means in the other of said two directions from the zero representative position to a one dollar value representative position whereby said units of cents type wheel is adjusted to 00 print position and said tens of cents type wheel is adjusted to 1.

6. In a value printing and registering device,

a register including a plurality of ordinally arranged numeral wheels,

a tens-transfer means associated with successive pairs of numeral wheels operable upon passage of a lower order numeral from 9 to 0 or "0 to 9 to 13 effect Ian incremental rotation of the adjacent higher order numeral wheel,

a differentially settable selection means,

an actuating means for effecting registrations in said register in accordance with the differential setting of said selection means,

means for driving said actuating means for a cycle of operation of said device,

:a units type wheel having type characters to "9" and 00 thereon adjustable to print position,

a tens type Wheel having at least type characters 1,

"0 and 1 thereon Iadjustable to print position,

a tens-transfer gear means :associated with said type wheels operable to effect an increment of rotation to said tens type wheel upon passage of said units type wheel Ifrom "9 to "0 or "0 t0 "9,

a manually operable Value selector means selectively adjustable from a normal zero representative position to each of a plurality of one and two digit value representative positions :and operable to effect a corresponding adjustment of said type wheels, said value selector means being normally engaged with said selection means to effect a differential setting thereof in accordance with the adjustment of said value selector means,

a blocking means normally operable to prevent disengagement of said value selector means from said selection means in other than the zero representative position and effective in said zero representative position to enable disengagement of said value selector means from said selection means and the adjustment of the selector means to a three digit value representative position whereby .said unit type wheel is adjusted to the 00 print position effecting operation of said tens-transfer gear to cause an incremental rotation of said tens type wheel,

means associated with the hundredths order numeral Wheel in said register for enabling rotation of the hundredths order numeral wheel independently of the lower order numeral wheels,

means adjustable from a normally inactive to an active position to effect operation of said associated means for an incremental rotation of the hundredths order numeral Wheel in said register,

means driven by said driving means for controlling operation of said adjustable means upon its movement to active position, and

means operable by said selector means to move said adjustable means to active position upon adjustment of said selector means to the three digit value representative position.

7. In a device of the character described in claim 6 wherein the type characters on said units type wheel are equiangularly spaced with the 00 type character between 9 and 0, said units type wheel being adjustable by said value selector means and operable upon rotation thereof from 00 to 0 or "0 to 00 to effect operation of said tens-transfer gear means.

8. In a device of the character described in claim 7 wherein said value selector means comprises a rotatable 'and axially movable cylindrical member normally rotatable in one direction from a zero representative position to each of a plurality of one and two digit value indicating positions and in the opposite direction from a value indicating position to the zero representative position, said cylindrical member being enabled Iby said blocking means for axial movement to enable rotation thereof in the other direction from the zero representative position to a predetermined three digit value indicating position,

a first gear means for enabling the setting of said selection means,

Ia second gear means carried by said cylindrical member for controlling adjustment of' said type wheels and normally engaged with said first gear -means to control the differential setting of said selection means, and

a spring means for resiliently maintaining said second gear means in engagement with said first gear means.

9. In a device of the character described in claim 8 wherein said blocking means comprises a disk member carried by said first gear means and having a concavity in the periphery thereof operable in the zero representative position of said cylindrical member to enable axial movement of said cylindrical member and the disengagement of said second gear means from said first gear means for rotation of said cylindrical member in said other direction from the zero representative position to a predetermined three digit value indicating position,

a locking means operable upon axial movement of said cylindrical member to limit rotation thereof to the predetermined three digit value indicating position and to lock said cylindrical member in the axially moved position against the urgency of said spring, and

a roller c-arried by .said second gear means operable upon rotation of said cylindrical member in its axially moved position to effect operation of said moving means for adjustment of said adjustable means.

10. In a device of the character described in claim 9 wherein said moving means comprises a lever rockable by said roller to effect adjustment of said adjustable means from the inactive to the active position to effect operation of said associated means.

11. In a device of the character described in claim 10 wherein said associated means comprises a ratchet wheel engageable by said adjustable means upon yadjustment to active position.

12. In a device of the character described in claim 11 wherein said adjustable means comprises a slide reciprocative transversely of the axis of said hundredths order numeral wheel, and

a resilient actuating finger supported on said slide for engagement with said ratchet wheel,

said slide having a series of equally spaced apertures therein adapted for engagement with said driven means to control the reciprocation of said slide.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,321,425 6/ 1943 ROuan 235--101 2,587,766 3/1952 Rouan 235-133 3,107,854 10/ 1963 Lundqust 23S-101 STEPHEN I. TOMSKY, Primary Examiner U.S. C1. X.R. 10i-91; 23S-58

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
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US3107854 *Mar 24, 1959Oct 22, 1963Internat Postal Supply CorpPostage metering machine
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3561673 *Jun 11, 1969Feb 9, 1971Kerestes AndyGolf score counter
US3601137 *Jul 10, 1968Aug 24, 1971Bowles CorpApp. and method for providing variable function generation in fluidic systems
US3722405 *Sep 30, 1970Mar 27, 1973Addressograph MultigraphPrint wheel setting and control means in data recorders
US3938436 *Apr 16, 1974Feb 17, 1976Hilti AktiengesellschaftSelective embossing press with drum stop means
US4458593 *May 19, 1983Jul 10, 1984Pitney Bowes Inc.Indicia plate for a postage meter
US4516494 *Mar 21, 1984May 14, 1985Pitney Bowes Inc.Anti theft device for a printing machine print wheel assembly
US4910392 *Mar 20, 1987Mar 20, 1990Pitney Bowes PlcCounter mechanisms
US5842794 *Aug 25, 1997Dec 1, 1998F. Zimmermann Gmbh & Co. KgPerforating device and process for setting perforating devices
Classifications
U.S. Classification235/101, 101/91, 235/58.00P
International ClassificationG07B17/00
Cooperative ClassificationG07B17/00508, G07B2017/00548
European ClassificationG07B17/00F2