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Publication numberUS3489638 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 13, 1970
Filing dateMar 28, 1967
Priority dateMar 28, 1967
Publication numberUS 3489638 A, US 3489638A, US-A-3489638, US3489638 A, US3489638A
InventorsGeorge Collons
Original AssigneeCompac Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Label applying machine
US 3489638 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jan. 13, 1970 G- COLLONS I LABEL APPLYING MACHINE Filed March 28, 1967 r 6 W F United States Patent 3,489,638 LABEL APPLYING MACHINE George Collons, Lincolnwood, Ill., assignor, by mesne assignments, to Compac Corporation, New York, N.Y.,

a corporation of Delaware Filed Mar. 28, 1967, Ser. No. 626,541 B32b 7/06, 7/00 US. Cl. 156584 1 Claim ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A label dispensing machine of the type which includes a label applying head having an apertured label receiving portion through which air is drawn by suction to'hold a label pushed into a label applying position thereon, a roll support for a roll of label stock including a backing strip having attached thereto by pressure sensitive adhesive separate longitudinally spaced labels, and first label peeling means adjacent to said label applying head for sharply bending a forwardly moving portion of said backing strip unwound from said roll of label stock to effect the progressive peeling of a label from the backing strip in front of the bend point of the backing strip as the stiffer label continues to move forwardly of the bend point, is provided with label stock handling apparatus positioned in the path of movement of the label stock between said roll support and said first label pelling means, said label stock handling apparatus including a second label peeling means for sharply bending the portion of the backing strip moving thereby to effect the progressive peeling of the labels thereon as they are moved beyond the bend point of the backing strip, label engaging means spaced forwardly of the latter bend point of the backing strip a distance less than the length of each label for re-applying the peeled portion of each label by pressing the same against another portion of the same backing strip from which it was previously removed, and backing strip guide means for guiding the backing strip for movement between said second label peeling means and said second label engaging means over a path having a length greater than the spacing of the labels on the backing strip, said backing strip guide means including means forming a solid support against which the backing strip is pushed as said label engaging means presses a portion of a partially peeled label against said backing strip.

This invention relates to a label applying machine which uses label stock of the type including a backing strip having separated longitudinally spaced printed labels thereon secured to the backing strip by a layer of pressure sensitive adhesive coated on the inner unprinted side of the labels. The completed label stock is usually wound into rolls for convenience in handling, storage and shipment to the ultimate user. The user places a roll of the label stock on the label applying machine and threads an unwound end of the roll through a label applying head of the machine. The label applying machine dispenses labels automatically one at a time from the backing strip as an article is moved to a labeling station of the machine. The labels readily peel from the backing strip by passing the backing strip around the edge of a sharply angled plate called a peeler plate. The rigidity of the labels causes the labels to continue in a straight line and thereby peel from the backing strip at the point where the backing strips bend sharply back at the tip of the peeler plate. The peeled labels are received one at a time by the label applying head of the label applying machine with the pressure sensitive adhesive coated sides thereof facing away from the head which then applies each label to an article delivered to the labeling station of the machine.

In the fabrication of the label stock described above, a

laminate body is initially formed comprising the backing strip coated with a smooth surfaced release coating, and a continuous unprinted label-forming strip with a pressure sensitive adhesive adhered to the release coating on the backing strip. This laminate body is fed through a printing press which imprints suitable indicia upon the outer side of the continuous label-forming strip carried on the backing strip. As the label stock leaves the printing press, the label-forming strip will have longitudinally spaced labelforming areas which must be severed from the rest of the label-forming strip to form the aforementioned longitudinally spaced labels which can be separately applied to different articles by the label applying machine described above. To this end, the printed label stock leaving the printing press is fed to severing means designed to cut through the label-forrning strip around the margins of the labels printed thereon. The portion of the label-forming strip severed from the printed labels thereon which is referred to as a matrix is then removed from around the labels.

One of the difliculties encountered in severing the main body of the label-forming strip from the printed labels is that the severing means undesirably frequently nicks or cuts through the backing strip as well as the label-forming strip. The undesired nicking or cutting of the backing strip may cause difiiculties in the proper removal of the labels from the backing strip at the peeler plate due to the hinging of the labels onto the backing strip by the oozing of the adhesive at the margins of the labels into the body of the backing strip through the breaks in the release coating thereof. This is particularly a problem where the peeled labels are received by a label applying head where the labels are held in place by suction, as in the case of the label applying machine disclosed in U.S. Patent No. 3,093,528. In such case, the suction utilized to hold the labels on the label applying head must be sufliciently weak that the labels peeling from the backing strip are pushed along the label applying head into a final label applying position by the portion of the backing strip which still remains attached to the label as it approaches the edge of the peeler plate. Where the bond between the labels and the backing strip is overly strong, for example, either because of aging of the adhesive bond or because of the oozing of the adhesive into the indentations or cuts into the backing strip along the margins of the label, the trailing end of a partially peeled label will not separate from the backing strip if the suction force holding the front portion of the label on the label applying head is weaker than the bond between the trailing end of the label and the portion of the backing strip attached thereto. In such case, the movement of the latter portion of the backing strip around the peeling edge of the peeler plate will pull the weakly held label off the label applying head. (The overly strong bond between the labels and the backing strip will not generally inhibit the peeling of the leading edge of the labels from the backing strip.)

The problem of the creation of an overly strong bond because of the oozing of the adhesive into the indentations or cuts in the backing strip can be eliminated by fabricating the label stock in a manner which eliminates the indentations or cuts or which includes a label delaminating and relaminating operation which disp aces the labels on the backing strip so that the indentations or cuts in the backing strip are not coextensive with the margins of the labels. However, it has been heretofore proposed to carry out the latter delaminating and relaminating operation by use of a sharply angled peeler plate around which the backing strip is bent, and a pressure roller spaced from the peeling edge of the peeler plate a distance less than the length of a label, which roller re-applies the labels to the backing strip at a point thereon forwardly of the point from which it was removed and displaced from the area occupied previously by another label so the margins of the label are not coextensive with indentations in the backing strip. However, these modifications in the fabrication of the label stock do not avoid the aforementioned difiiculties caused by the aging of the adhesive bond between the labe s and the backing strip after the fabrication thereof. In accordance with the present invention, a delaminating and relaminating operation is performed on the tape applying machine rather than in the process of fabrication thereof and on the portion of the label stock next to be delivered to the peeler plate opposite the label applying head so an aged unduly strong adhesive bond betwen the labels and the backing strip is converted to a light bond sh rtly before the labels are finally removed from the backing strip. The delaminating and relaminating apparatus may be similar to that described above suggested for use during the fabrication of the label stock. This delaminating and relaminating operation carried out on the label applying machine is easy to accomplish even when the labels are fairly securely attached to the backing strip by an aged adhesive bond since, as above explained, the unpeeling of the labels from a backing strip moved around the edge of a peeler plate takes place without difficulty and, the trailing end of a partially peeled label will separate without difiiculty from the backing strip when the leading edge thereof is held solidly against the backing strip by a pressure roller or the like.

The features of the invention will be more clearly apparent upon making reference to the specification to follow, the claims and the drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a fragmentary side elevational view, partly in section, illustrating a label applying machine incorporating the features of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged sectional view through the label stock used on the machine shown in FIG. 2;

FIG. 3 is a sectional view through the apparatus shown in FIG. 1, taken along section line 33 thereof; and

FIG. 4 is a sectional view through the machine shown in FIG. 1, taken along section line 4-4 therein.

Referring now more particularly to FIG. 1, there is illustrated a label applying machine incorporating features of the present invention. The machine includes a housing having a roll 12 of label stock rotatably mounted upon a cardboard tube 13 frictionally fitted over a freely rotatable flanged hub 14 extending from the housing 10. The label stock comprises a backing strip 16 of paper or the like with a plurality of evenly longitudinally spaced labels 18 secured thereon by a layer 19 (FIG. 2) of pressure sensitive adhesive. The backing strip 1-6 has on the face thereof to which the labels 12 are secured to re ease coating 17 which, under the normal circumstances, permits the labels to be easily removed from the backing strip. The backing strip bears indentations or cuts 16a falling along the margins of the labels 18. These indentations were caused by the severing operation which removed waste materials from around the labels during the fabrication of the label stock.

The unwound portion of the label stock 12 illustrated in FIG. 1 extends downwardly from the roll 12 where it passes over and is held against a pair of guide rollers 2020 by a spring clamp 22. The label stock then passes around other guide rollers 21 and enters label delaminating and relaminating equipment generally indicated by reference numeral 24 to be described. The label stock leaving the label delaminating and relaminating apparatus 24 appears the same as the label stock entering the apparatus 24 but, as will appear, the labels 18 are displaced forwardly on the backing strip 16 from the position they assumed previously, a distance which is a non-integral number of times the spacing between the center points of the labels on the backing strip so that the indentations 16a will not extend along the margins of the displaced labels.

In the illustrated embodiment of the invention, the label stock 12 leaving the de aminating and relaminating apparatus 24 passes around idler rollers 25, a drive roller 26 and idler rollers 29 and 30 where it passes along a sharply angled peeler plate 32. The peeler plate has an inlet section 32a and an outlet section 32b which intersects the inlet section at a sharp angle to form a stripping or peeling edge 34. The backing strip 16 is moved around the stripping edge 34 and, in so doing, causes the relatively stiff labels to separate or peel from the backing strip where it passes along a label receiving surface 37 of a label applying head 39 of the type, for example, disclosed in US. Patent No. 3,093,528. When a label has completely left the backing strip, it presses against a microswitch 41 (or interrupts a light beam etc.) on the label applying head 39. The backing strip 16 of the label stock moving around the peeling edge 34 passes along peeler plate wall 32b and then between the rollers 42 and 44 and around a take-up roll wound around a cardboard sleeve 47 fr-ictionally fitted around a flanged rotatable hub 48 which imparts an unwinding force on the backing strip.

In operation, the device illustrated in FIG. 1 is completely automatic and may be controlled by means known in the art. When a label is not in position against the microswitch 41 on the label applying head 39, the hub 48 is driven to wind the back strip upon the roll 46 and unwind the same from the roll 12. As a label 18 is peeled from the backing strip 16, it moves forward and strikes the microswitch 41 which stops movement of the hub 48.

The label 18 is held on the label receiving surface 37 of the label applying head 39 by a suction applied to the label receiving surface 37, and the microswitch 41 is ad justably oriented with relation to the bottom surface of the head 39 to enable labels to be held in the proper position thereon.

When an article is moved into position under the label applying head 39, air pressure is preferably applied to the head to drive the labels involved onto the article, as explained in said US. Patent No. 3,093,328 or copending US. application Ser. No. 329,016, filed Dec. 9, 1963, patented July 4, 1967, Patent No. 3,329,550.

The label delaminating and relaminating apparatus 24 includes a delaminating station 50 at which the labels 18 are peeled from the backing strip 16, and a label relaminating station 52 at which the peeled labels are re-applied to the backing strip 16. The delaminating station includes a peeler plate 54 having a peeler wall 540 along which the label stock is moved to a peeling or stripping edge 54b at which the backing strip 16 of the label stock sharply reverses in direction and is moved along an outlet wall 540 of the peeler plate. As in the case of the peeler plate 32, the labels 18 will continue to move in a forward direction as the backing strip 16 bends around the peeling edge 54b. Before the labels completely separate from the backing strip 16 at the peeling edge 54b, the forward end portion of the partially peeled label involved will pass betwen a backing roller 55 and a label engaging roller 57. The point at which the roller 57 engages the portion of the partially peeled label 18 at the label relaminating station 52 is spaced from the backing strip 16 at the peeling edge 541) a distance less than the length of the label. The label engaging roller 57 contacts the label moving away from the peeling edge 54b and presses the same against the portion of the backing strip 16 being moved forwardly around the periphery of the roller 55 which acts as a solid backing for the label relaminating operation, so that the partially peeled label 18 will unquestionably separate from the backing strip 16 when the trailing edge of the label finally reaches the peeling edge 54b.

Means are provided for guiding the backing strip in a path between the peeling edge 54b and the backing roller 55 over a path length which is greater than the spacing of the labels on the backing Strip. This spacing is preferably a non-integral number of times the spacing between the labels on the backing strip 16 so that when the labels are re-applied to the backing strip they will be out of alignment with the indentations 16a formed in the backing strip. The means for guiding the backing strip between the peeling edge 54b and the backing roller 55 may take a number of different forms, such as a pair or guide idler rollers 60 and 62 around which the backing strip extends on its way to the backing roller 55.

The manner in which the label stock is moved or fed from the supply roll 12 and the take-up roll 46 may take a variety of forms which are well known in the label applying art. For example, in the machine illustrated, the take-up hub 48 is secured to an output shaft 64 of a slip clutch 66 which will drive the shaft 64 except when there is a substantial opposition to the turning of the shaft 64 such as, for example, caused by the unopposed drag of the backing strip 16. The slip clutch has a continuously driven input shaft 65 which is the source of driving power for the output shaft 64. When a label feeding operation is called for when a label 18 is blown off the label applying head, the resultant release of the microswitch 41 (or the reception of light by a photocell where the control is by such means) provides slack in the backing strip in any well known manner so the slip clutch 66 drives the hub shaft 64 to wind up a section of backing strip on the takeup roll 46 and a new label is carried into discharge position upon the label-receiving surface 37 of the label applying head 39. This slack can be obtained in a number of different ways. For example, the roller 42 around which the backing strip 16 passes as it leaves the peeler plate 32 may be a driven roller continuously driven from the shaft 65 by a pulley-belt drive 67. The companion roller 44 is shown mounted on the end of a support arm 71 normally urged by a spring 73 into position where the roller 44 is spaced appreciably from the associated roller 42, a distance where the backing strip 16 will not be forcefully applied against the periphery of the rotating roller 42. In such case, the clutch 66 connected to the shaft 64 will rotate the hub 47 until the backing strip 16 is under such tension that the clutch 66 will slip to decouple the motion of the drive shaft 65 from the input shaft 64. When a label feeding operation is called for, a solenoid 75 is energized to pivot the roller carrying end of the arm 71 toward the associated roller 42 where the backing strip 16 is forcibly applied against the rotating periphery of the roller 42 which creates slack in the backing strip 16 to effect the drive of the hub 46 until such time as the roller 44 moves away from the associated drive roller 42 when the label is properly positioned on the label applying head. It is apparent that, in the apparatus illustrated, the microswitch 41 effects de-energization of the solenoid 75 when a label 18 engages the same and effects energization of the solenoid when the label is disengaged therefrom.

FIG. 1 shoyvs roller 26 continuously driven by shaft 65 through a pulley-belt drive 70 to aid in the feeding of the backing strip. However, the roller 26 cannot feed the backing strip 16 without aid from the roller 42 when I the backing strip is pressed against the same by the roller 44.

It should be understood that numerous modifications may be made in the preferred form of the invention described above without deviating from the broader aspects thereof I claim:

1. In a label dispensing machine which includes a label applying head having an apertured label-receiving portion through which air is drawn by suction to hold a label pushed into a label-applying position thereon and from which label applying head the labels are delivered to an article to be labeled, a roll support for a roll of label stock including a backing strip having attached thereto by pressure sensitive adhesive separate longitudinally spaced labels which are stiff relative to the backing strip, and first label peeling means adjacent to said label applying head for sharply bending a forwardly moving portion of said backing strip unwound from said roll of label stock to effect the progressive peeling of a label from the backing strip in front of the bend point of the backing strip as the stiffer label continues to move forwardly of the bent point, in combination, label stock handling apparatus positioned in the path of movements of the label stock between said roller support and said first label peeling means, said label stock handling apparatus including a label delaminating station having a second label peeling means for sharply bending the portion of the backing strip moving thereby to effect the progressive peeling of the labels thereon as they are moved beyond the bend point of the backing strip, a relaminating station including label engaging means forwardly of the latter bend point of the backing strip a distance less than the length of each label for re-applying the peeled portion of each label by pressing the same against another portion of the same backing strip from which it was previously removed, and backing strip guide means for guiding the backing strip for movement between said second label peeling means at said label delaminating station, and second label engaging means at said label relaminating station over a path having a length greater than the spacing of the labels on said backing strip, said backing strip guide means including means forming a solid support against which the backing strip is pushed at said relaminating station as said label engaging means presses a portion of a partially peeled label against said backing strip.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS SAMUEL FEINBERG, Primary Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 156-344

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2317576 *May 14, 1941Apr 27, 1943Avery Ray StantonLabel dispenser
US3329550 *Dec 9, 1963Jul 4, 1967Kleen Stik Products IncMethod and apparatus for applying labels
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3863761 *Jun 5, 1972Feb 4, 1975R A Jones & Company IncLabel web
US3888725 *Mar 16, 1973Jun 10, 1975Compac CorpAir manifold with mask and label applicator utilizing the same
US3981407 *Aug 15, 1974Sep 21, 1976Potts Robert GCone labeling, separating and restacking apparatus and method
US4052250 *Mar 22, 1976Oct 4, 1977Potts Robert GCone labeling, separating and restacking apparatus
US4148683 *Sep 15, 1977Apr 10, 1979Potts Robert GCone labeling, separating and restacking apparatus and method
US4328063 *Mar 2, 1981May 4, 1982Ingalls James EShute with face-up adhesive label at bottom
US5232539 *Feb 22, 1991Aug 3, 1993Grand Rapids Label CompanyObject labeling machine
US5293882 *Dec 28, 1992Mar 15, 1994P.M.B. Patent Machinebouw B.V.Device for unwinding a bobbin
US6334921Jun 21, 1999Jan 1, 2002Meto International GmbhApparatus and method for manufacturing labels for electronic article surveillance
DE19827592A1 *Jun 20, 1998Dec 23, 1999Meto International GmbhVorrichtung und Verfahren zur Herstellung von Etiketten für die elektronische Artikelsicherung
EP0061814A1 *Mar 25, 1982Oct 6, 1982P.M.B. Patent Machinebouw B.V.Device for detacking tobacco leaf material from a flexible, belt-shaped carrier
EP0499331A1 *Feb 11, 1992Aug 19, 1992P.M.B. Patent Machinebouw B.V.Device for unwinding a bobine
EP1055604A1 *May 18, 1999Nov 29, 2000CCL Label, Inc.Apparatus and method for cutting off labels from a label sheet adhering on a backing sheet and applying them
Classifications
U.S. Classification156/767, 156/719
International ClassificationB65C9/18
Cooperative ClassificationB65C9/1876
European ClassificationB65C9/18B4