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Publication numberUS3508378 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 28, 1970
Filing dateFeb 7, 1967
Priority dateFeb 7, 1967
Publication numberUS 3508378 A, US 3508378A, US-A-3508378, US3508378 A, US3508378A
InventorsAshcraft Robert M, Cannon Sidney E, Fehr Isaac N, Goodman William D, Shelby Frank S, Sutherland Dan
Original AssigneeCampbell Taggart Ass Bakeries
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Packaging machine and package formed thereby
US 3508378 A
Abstract  available in
Images(5)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

April 28, 1970 N. FEHR ETAL PACKAGING MACHiNE AND PACKAGE FORMED THERE'BY 5 Sheets-S'net 1 Filed Feb. 7, 1967 INVENTORS ATTORNEY April 28, 1970 1. N. FEHR ETAL 3,508,378

PACKAGING MACHINE AND PACKAGE FORMED THEREBY 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Feb. '7, 1967 INVENTORS ISAAC N. FEHR SIDNEY E. CANNON Qo mm SUTHERLAND WILLIAM D.GOODMAN ROBERT M.ASHCRAFT FRANK saw-19y ATTORNEY 5 Sheets-Sheet 3 BY g MMmr-K ATTORNEY April 28, 1970 l. N. FEHR- ETAL PACKAGING MACHINE AND PACKAGE FORMED THEREBY Filed Feb. 7. 1967 April 28, 1970 I. N. FEHR ETAL 3,503,378

PACKAGING MACHINE AND PACKAGE FORMED THEREBY 5 Sheets-Sheet 4 Filed Feb. '7, 1967 I INVENTORS ISAAC N. FEHR SIDNEY E. CANNON DAN SUT WILLI ROBE FRAN

HER LAND AM 0. GOODMAN RT M. ASHCRAFT K S.SHELBY ATTORNEY PACKAGING MACHINE AND PACKAGE FORMED THEREBY Filed Feb. '7, 1967 April 28, 1970 l. N. FEHR ETAL 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 INVENTORS FEHR ISAAC N.

SIDNEY E.CANNON DAN SUTHERLAND WILLIAM D. GOODMAN ROBERT M. ASHCRAFT FRANK S. SHELBY W E MK ATTORNEY ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Packaging apparatus comprising a conveyor, push arms movable above the conveyor to push successive groups of articles to be packaged against plastic film to draw the film tightly around the articles. Cutting and sealing means is operably associated with the plastic film and the push arms to seal the film, forming a package snugly drawn around the articles. Means is provided for scoring and sealing the film to form packages divided into separate sealed package units.

A bun or other bakery product packaging method and apparatus which provides for packaging and sealing selected numbers of buns, or other uniformly shaped products, in plastic film in a continuous automatic operation wherein the individual packages may be selectively severed therebetween and are perforated or scored therebetween so that they may be later separated into individual packages and easily opened by the purchaser.

This invention is an improvement on the device shown in our co-pending application for patent, Ser. No. 467,628, filed June 28, 1965, entitled Continuous Flow Bun Packager, reference to which is hereby made.

In said co-pending application a device is disclosed for dividing, counting, slicing and packaging buns, rolls or other bakery and food articles in a continuous operation, and the device disclosed in the present application provides an improved packaging apparatus to be substituted for the packaging apparatus shown generally in the said co-pending application.

The invention contemplates a device wherein groups of buns or other like bakery products are forcibly pushed between layers of polyethylene film to unwind the film from rolls spaced above and below the machine, with reciprocating sealer bars arranged to come into contact with the film to seal same transversely as packages are moved on a conveyor, a cutting heater element to sever the sealed surfaces to separate the packages at desired intervals, knurled sealing wheels arranged to rotate with pressure relationship along the edge of the packages to seal same, a knurled wheel arranged to roll in pressure contact be tween groups of buns or other bakery products, alternate means for perforating or scoring the sealed surface between groups of buns as they move along the conveyor to permit the groups of buns to be divided into separate packages by the purchaser if desired, and means to score one side of the film to permit the separate packages to be more easily opened.

Alternatively the outer edges of the packages may be left unsealed and tied so that the buns or other bakery products may be removed from the package without tearing the film forming the package. Means are provided for trimming excess film from the packages outwardly of the sealed edges, and means are provided for exerting pressure on the film at the edges of the packages while it is being sealed in order to remove slack in the packaging material.

United States Patent r 3,508,378 Ice Patented Apr. 28, 1970 All of the foregoing operations are carried out in a continuous sequence of operation to thereby provide a sealed package for selected groups of buns or other like articles, which package is compact, simple and easy to store and transport, allows quick and easy access thereto by the user of the packaged articles, preserves the integrity and freshness of the packaged articles, and provides advantages and uses not heretofore possible in packaging equipment heretofore employed.

Articles may be packaged with varying dimensions. Varying numbers of articles may be enclosed in connected but separately sealed packages which may be later disjoined; and various numbers of connected packages may be included in a connected total package. The flexibility and speed of this machine is a matter of great importance. In addition to the flexibility of adjustment heretofore mentioned it may package up to seventy-five packages per minute.

It will be understood that this device and process herein described being employed for packaging buns or other bakery products, it could be used for packaging other types of articles which are of substantially uniform size and shape.

It is therefore a primary object of the invention to provide a packaging method and apparatus wherein the packaging film is withdrawn from rolls on which it is stored by successive groups of buns or like articles being forced thereagainst.

A still further object of the invention is the provision of a bun packaging method and apparatus wherein successive groups of buns are forced between the sheets of packaging film to provide separate packages which are successively sealed therebetween, at the edges, cut into separate packages, and selectively perforated therebetween or ends left free for tying.

Another object of the invention is to provide a package for buns or other like products which is divided into two separate sealed package units with score lines traversing each unit to permit ease in opening.

Still another object of the invention is to provide a package for buns or other like products wherein two separate sealed packages are joined together by a perforated line whereby the two packages may be handled as a unit but may be separated by the purchaser for separate opening, and wherein the ends may be selectively tied or sealed.

Other and further objects of the invention will become apparent upon reading the detailed specification hereinafter following and by referring to the drawings annexed hereto.

A suitable embodiment of the invention is shown in the attached drawings wherein:

FIGURES I and I-A are a semi-diagrammatic, side elevational view of the packaging device as it would appear attached in association with rotatable push-off arms which move groups of buns between and into engagement with sheets of packaging film,

FIGURE II is a side elevational view of a suitable mechanism for intermittently or continuously bringing sealer bars into sealing engagement with thepackaging film,

FIGURE III is a cross sectional elevational view of the upper and lower sealing bars which may be brought into engagement with packaging film passing therebetween, and heated sealing bars reciprocably movable with reference thereto for sealing the sheets of plastic film into adhering relationship,

FIGURE IV is a side elevational view of the packaging film engaging bars with the sealing bar in engagement with the layers of packaging film and showing mechanism for selectively raising and lowering the cutting ribbon, said cutting ribbon being shown moved out of engagement with the packaging film by such mechanlsm,

FIGURE V is a side elevational view, similar to FIGURE IV, showing the cutting ribbon moved into engagement with the packaging film to sever same,

FIGURE VI is a side elevational view of the packaging material engaging bars with the edges of the packaging material engaged therebetween after such edges have been sealed by the sealing bar and severed by the cutting ribbon,

FIGURE VII is a top plan view of the mechanism for conveying and sealing between packages and along the edges thereof, means for trimming excess package material from the ends of the packages, and means for scoring or perforating longitudinally between the packages to permit same to be separated after packaging,

FIGURE VIII is a top perspective view of one form of package formed by this method and device,

FIGURE IX is a top perspective view of the package shown in FIGURE VIII illustrating the packaging film of one of the packages being torn away along the score line provided thereon to expose the buns therein,

FIGURE X is a top perspective view of another form of package which may be formed by the method and device herein described wherein the ends of the double package are tied by a securing member, and a perfora tion is provided centrally thereof along the seal area to permit the separate packages to be separated intact, and

FIGURE XI shows two separate packages of FIGURE X after they have been separated by severing along the score line provided between the packages.

Numeral references are employed to indicate the various parts shown in the drawings and like numerals indicate like parts throughout the various figures of the drawings.

Referring first to FIGURE I, the numeral 1 indicates a conveyor belt rotatably disposed about rollers 2 on which group of buns 3 are deposited from the grouper section of the device shown in the aforesaid co-pending a plication. The groups of buns 3 are engaged by the vertical engaging surfaces of the rotatable push arms 4. The push arms 4 are pivotally attached by pivot connections 7 to the chains 6 of which are rotatable on sprockets 6a at each end thereof, said sprockets being mounted on suitable axles 6b.

The structure, operation and function of the push-arm section is disclosed and described in the aforesaid copending application to which reference is hereby made for all purposes. As the push-arms 4 are rotated on the chain 6 to lowermost position the engaging surfaces slide along the conveyor 1 behind successive groups of buns 3 and push the buns together and deposit them on the receiving plate 17, and are pushed forcibly by the arms 4 between the upper and lower films of packaging material 11 and 11a to cause movement of the films 11 and 11a and withdrawal of same from storage rollers (not shown) about which they are wound.

The packaging film 11 and 11a are preferably plastic film such a polyethylene, polypropylene, Mylar, Saran, and others, which is preferably transparent but may be opaque, is relatively thin but strong, and which may be sealed together by application of heat and/or pressure as will be hereinafter described.

The upper film of material 11 may be passed over a guide roller against which there may be a pair of spaced scoring rollers 8 rolling in pressure engagement therewith, said scoring roller 8 having scoring teeth 9 thereon which provide spaced score lines 85 along the sheet 11 for the purpose hereinafter described.

The film 11 is passed between rotatable guide rollers 12 and 13, and film 11a is passed between spaced guide rollers 14 and 15.

The films 11 and 11a are engaged by and forcibly 4 pushed by the group of buns 3 to a position where they brought together between the reciprocating upper sealing bar 18 and lower holding bar 20.

The upper sealing bar 18 has a channel 18b provided along the lower side thereof which divides same into two legs each having knurled surfaces, sometimes called multi-points, 18a along the lower sides thereof.

The lower sealing bar 20 has a channel 20a along the upper surface thereof providing legs thereon, provided by-the spacer block 21a thereon on which are mounted elastic back-up members 21.

A cutting ribbon 19 which is heated to a red-hot temperature is recessed in the channel 18b and is arranged to move upwardly and downwardly therein in the mannerhereinafter described.

.-The upper sealing bar is heated by a resistance heating element 51 embedded therein.

The upper sealing bar 18 and lower sealing bar 20 may be brought together to engage the films 11 and 11a in? pressure relationship therebetween so that the knurled surfaces 18a will penetrate the layers of film and weld same together at 22 by reason of the knurled surfaces 18a, and the heat generated in the upper sealing bar 18. The cutting ribbon 19 may then be brought into engagement with the sealed surfaces to sever, and separate the packages, as hereinafter described, and as indicated at 23. It will be noted that a sealed edge 22a is left along the severed edges of the film sheets'll and 110 so that another group of buns 3 may be pushed into engagement therewith to withdraw further film from the storage rolls. The sealing and cutting procedure may be so timed that two packages may be left joined together as shown in FIGURE I, or each package may be severed from the other.

The packages 24 are deposited on a conveyor belt 25 which is rotatable about rollers 26 and are guided thereon by guide rollers 27 and 28.

It will be noted from FIGURE VII that two groups of four buns are provided in each package but it will be understood that the number of.funs per package and the number of groups in a total package can be varied.

A pressure seal is also provided longitudinally of the area between the groups of buns in each package as will be hereinafter described.

A pressure belt 29 is rotatable about the sheaves 30, 31, 32 and 33, said pressure belt being substantially the width of the spaced area between the groups of buns in each package and being arranged to extend slightly above the conveyor belt 25 so as to engage the under surfaces of the packages along the spaced areas therebetween.

A seal wheel 34, having a knurled outer surface 35 thereon (FIG. VII), rotatably engages the packaging material and is in pressure engagement therewith by reason of the pressure belt 29 pressing same thereagainst. The knurled surface 35 thus penetrates the packaging film, presses it together in adhering and sealing relationship, providing a center seal generally indicated by the numeral 84.

A center scoring wheel 36, (FIGS. I and VII), having cutting teeth 37 thereon is rotatably mounted on a pivotal arm 38 which may be moved into or out of engagement with the spaced area between the groups of buns in the packages so that a score line (FIG. X) may be provided thereon to permit the separate groups of buns to be separated into separate sealed packages, after packaging, if desired. If it is not desired to provide such a score line between the groups of buns in the packages the scoring Wheel 36 may be pivoted upwardly out of engagement with the film.

Pressure belts 39 (FIGS. VII and I-A) are provided above and below the outer edges of the packaging film which are rotatable on rollers 40 and 41. The outer edges of the packaging film are grippingly engaged between the pressure belts 39 to hold them in alignment while the edges are being sealed and trimmed, as hereinafter described.

The edge sealing wheels 42 (FIGS. VII and I-A) have knurled surfaces 42a on the outer periphery thereof, and the packaging film 11 and 11a are arranged to run between the sealing wheels 42 and back-up wheels 43 to thereby cause the knurled surfaces 42a to penetrate the layers of film and provide a seal therebetween.

The inner pressure belts 44 (FIGS. VII and I-A) are rotatable about rollers 45 and 46, and the packaging film 11 and 11a passes between the belts 44 in pressure relationship inwardly of the sealing wheels 42 so as to take the slack out of the sealing material between the sealing wheels to provide a compact and tight package.

Guide plates 40a engage the buns 3 and move them inwardly of the sealing wheels 42.

The excess packaging material on the outer edges of the packages, externally of the edge sealing surfaces, is trimmed off by cutting ribbons 47 which are red hot and engage the plastic film as it moves thereagainst and severs same to provide severed edges 48. The severed edges 48 are guided into suction tubes 49 and drawn off by suction to suitable disposalareas.

Th upper holding bar 50 extends transversely over the machine and is in alignment with the lower sealing bar 20. The upper holding bar has a channel 500 formed along the lower face thereof providing spaced parallel holding jaws 50a and 50b.

The upper sealing bar 18 is suspended in the .channel 500 by means of stems 52 extending through passages provided in the upper end of the channel and extend upwardly through a channel 50d provided along the upper side of the bar 50. Springs 53 are disposed about stems 52 between the lower wall of the channel 50d and flanges 52a provided on the upper ends of the stems 52. Thus the sealing bar 18 may move vertically with reference to the holding bar 50 against the spring 53, and the spring 53 urges the stem 52 upwardly and the sealing bar 18 against the upper wall of the channel 500.

A heater element 51 extends through the body of the sealing bar 18 to heat the sealing bar.

It will be seen from FIGURE III that the holding bar 50 may be moved downwardly to clamp the sheets of packaging material 11 and 11a between the holding jaws 50a and 50b and the resilient back-up 21 on the upper surface of the lower support bar 20. While so held the upper sealing bar 18 may be brought downwardly to cause the knurled surfaces 18a on the lower side thereof to contact and penetrate the material of the plastic film sheets 11 and 11a, and the heat present in the sealing bar 18 generated by the heater element 51, holds and seals the sheets of'material 11 and 11a together in sealed relationship.

It will be understood that suitable mechanism is provided for intermittently bringing the upper holding head 50 downwardly and the lower holding head upwardly to engage the packaging material therebetween and to intermittently bring the upper sealing bar 18 downwardly into contact with said material to seal same together.

Such mechanism is illustrated in FIGURE II wherein is shown an air cylinder 54 having a supply line 54a and return line 540 in communication therewith, and cylinder 54 has a piston therein which may be moved by air pressure to cause the piston rod 57 to move inwardly and outwardly thereof.

The air cylinder is pivotally mounted at 55 to a base member 56, which may be a part of the frame of the machine.

A link 58 is pivotally attached at 59a to the outer end of the piston rod 57 and is pivotally attached at 59 to a frame member 5%. A link 60 is attached by movable pivot 61 to the outer end of the link 58 and is pivotally attached at 60a to one end of a link 62. The link 62 is pivotally secured by pivot 63 to the frame member 63a and the outer end of link 62 is pivotally attached by pivot 65a to a link 65 which in turn is attached by pivot 65b between the spaced cars 64 at each end of the sealing bar 18 by which the sealing bar is suspended, and the holding bar 50 is suspended to the sealing bar 18.

A link 66 is pivotally attached to link 58 and is pivotally attached at 68 by a movable pivot to the outer end of the link 67.

Link 67 is pivotally attached to a fixed frame member 69a by pivot 69 and is pivotally attached at its outer end by pivot 71 to an arm 70. The arm 70* is pivotally attached to the under side of the seal support bar 20 by the pivot 7041.

It will be understood that the mechanism hereinbefore described is duplicated at each end of the holder barseal bar assembly and operates in unison.

It will be seen that when the air cylinder 54 is actuated to move the piston rod 57 outwardly the links 58, and 66 assume the position shown in broken lines in FIGURE II. Such movement moves the outer end of the link 62 downwardly and the outer end of link 67 upwardly thereby moving the jaws 50a and 50b of the upper holding bar downwardly and the lower holding bar 20 upwardly to engage and clamp the sheets of film 11 and 11a together therebetween as shown in FIGURE III. Further movement of the linkage assembly causes further downward movement of the outer end of the arm 62 to thereby move the upper sealing bar 18 downwardly to cause the knurled surfaces on the lower edges thereof to engage and penetrate the packaging material sheets and seal them together by heat emanating from the upper sealing bar 18.

Likewise reverse movement of the piston and the air cylinder 54 to withdraw the piston rod 57 thereinto moves the linkages to original position as shown in full lines in FIGURE II, thereby separating the heads and placing them in position to carry out another sealing operation, as hereinbefore described. Such operation may of course be carried out in timed sequence by conventional time delay and stepping circuits, not necessary to illustrate in connection with this invention.

A cam plate 72 is pivotally attached to the frame member 74 by the pivot 73.

The cam plate 72 has a curved follower surface 75 thereon which is arranged to contact the cutting ribbon 19 to raise and lower same in the manner hereinafter described.

A solenoid 76 is mounted on the frame member 74 and has an extendable core 77 therein, which is connected by a link 78 to the cam plate 72.

A spring 79 is secured at one end to the frame member 74, and is attached at its other end to the cam plate 72. The spring 79 is arranged to urge the cam plate 72 to the right as shown in FIGURE IV.

An arm 81 is secured at one end to the cutting ribbon 19 and is pivotally secured at its opposite end to the frame member 81a. The spring 80 is attached to the frame member 74 and is attached at its other end to arm 81. The spring is arranged to urge the cutting ribbon 19 into contact with the curved surface 75 of the cam plate 72. It will be understood that the cam, solenoid and spring arrangement heretofore described for raising and lowering.the cutting ribbon 19 into and out of engagement with the layers of film clamped between the holding beams 50 and 20 are duplicated at opposite ends of the machine so that both ends of the cutting ribbon 19 will be actuated simultaneously.

Als shown in FIGURE IV the solenoid 76 is energized to draw the core 77 thereinto, thereby moving the plate 72 to the left about the pivot point 73. In this position the curved surface 75 on the cam plate 72 has moved the cutting ribbon 19 upwardly out of contact with the film 11 and 11a. In timed sequence, by suitable automatic switching arrangement the solenoid 76 is de-energized, which allows the spring 79 to contract and thereby move the cam plate 72 to initial position about the pivot point 73. This permits the curved cam surface 75 to move to the right thereby allowing the cutting ribbon 19 to be lowered by reason of the force of the contraction of the spring 80. The cutting ribbon 19 is thus moved to the position shown in FIGURE V where the heat thereof burns and severs the layers of plastic film 11 and 11a and thereby severs the connection between the packages of buns 24 as illustrated in FIGURE I.

The solenoid 76 is then again energized, withdrawing the core 77 thereinto, thereby causing the curved surface 75 of the cam plate 72 to move the cutting ribbon 19 upwardly out of contact with the film as shown in FIG URE VI.

The energization and de-energization of the solenoid 76 may be so timed as to cause the cutting ribbon 19 to be lowered between each package 24 or it may be timed by a conventional adjustable timing switch, relay or other control to allow two or more packages to pass thereunder without being severed and separated. Thus, the number of joined packages may be varied as desired.

Unique packages of buns or other uniformly shaped articles formed by the machine and process hereinbefore described are illustrated in FIGURES VIII-XI inclusive.

As hereinbefore described the individual packages 24, as shown in FIGURES VIII and IX, are sealed at opposite edges 83 by the heated multi-points 18a coming into pressure contact therewith as the wrapping film passes between the pressure heads 50 and 20 which are brought into engagement therewith, and the multi-points are lowered into pressure engagement therewith. The individual packages are severed as hereinafter described by the cutting ribbon 19 lowered between the multi-points. 18a, thereby leaving sealed edges 83.

The longitudinal seal line 84 is continuously formed by the knurled surface 35 of the sealing wheel 34 rolling in pressure contact with the wrapping film and pressing same into sealing adhering relationship as it passes along the conveyor 25. The end sealed edges 82 are formed by the knurled surfaces 42a on the sealing wheels 42 rolling in pressure contact with the free edges of the packaging film as it is moved along the conveyor 25, and is held in engaging relationship between the the outside film pressure belts 39 and the inside film pressure belts 44.

The scored tear lines 85 are formed in the upper layer of film 11 by the spaced scoring rollers 8 and 9 as the film is withdrawn from a storage roller (not shown).

Thus when the package 24 comes off the conveyor 25 a sealed package as shown in FIGURE VIII is provided having score lines 85 formed on either side of the center seal strip 84.

Thus a package is provided having two distinct sealed areas having a preselected number of buns or other uniformly shaped articles therein. A selected individual sealed area of the double package may be selectively opened without opening the other sealed area and exposing the buns or other articles therein. Thus as shown in FIG- URE IX the upper layer of film may be easily torn along one of the score lines 85 and pulled open by the flap 86 thereby exposing the buns 3 therein. The other section of the package may be left intact to maintain the buns therein in fresh state until there is a desire to use, same thereby preventing molding and wastage. The package shown in FIGURES VIII and IX is also convenient to use in commercial establishments where hamburgers are made, because the user can quickly open both sections of the package for exposure of the buns therein by simply inserting the fingers along the score line and pulling the flaps 86 outward in opposite directions for either use of the buns from the package or for emptying same into another container for immediate use.

A modified type of package may be formed by this machine and process as shown in FIGURES X and XI. In this package, indicated generally at 87, the edge seal lines 88 are formed by the heated multi-points 18a in the manner hereinbefore described, and the longitudinal seal line 89 is formed by the pressure wheel 34 as the package progresses along the conveyor 25. As shown, a tear, score or perforation line 90 has been formed across the seal area 89 by lowering the center perforator wheel 36 thereagainst so that the teeth 37 thereon penetrate the packaging material to provide such perforation.

Of course the perforator wheel 36 could be lowered to provide a perforation line across the center seal line 84 in the form of package shown in FIGURES VIII and IX.

In forming the package shown in FIGURES X and XI, the edge sealing wheels 42 have been eliminated or raised out of engagement with the wrapping film so that the ends 91 are free after excess wrapping film has been trimmed from the edges thereof by the cutting ribbons 47 at each side thereof. The free ends 91 are tied together and sealed by paper covered tie-wires 92, either by hand or by automatic machine. An automatic machine is provided for thispurpose at the end of the conveyor 25, which is a conventional construction.

As it comes off of the conveyor 25, the package 87 is in the form shown in FIGURE X with two separate sealed areas having buns 3 therein. The package 87 may be folded along the perforation line 89 to provide a compact package for handling and storing on the grocery shelf. The purchaser may open a selected sealed area by removing the Wire 92 and using the buns therefrom, leaving the other area closed and sealed, or the separate areas may be torn apart along the perforation line 90 to provide two separate packages as shown in FIGURE XI. One of the packages may be stored or frozen in sealed condition and the other package used.

Of course various numbers of buns may be packaged in the separate compartments shown in the packages of FIGURES VIII-IX and X-XI.

The operation and function of the machine and method hereinbefore described is as follows:

The operation is started by sealing the free edges of the film 11 and 11a by bringing the sealing bar 18 into contact therewith against the elastic back-up facing 21 on the sealing bar 20. The counting and grouping machine is then started which includes as a part thereof the pusher arms 4. The pusher arms 4 successively push groups of buns 3 between the sealed edges of the polyethylene film 11 and 11a and unwind the film as the guide rollers 27 and 28 move the packages 24 onto the conveyor 25. The operative sequence of the holding head 50 and sealer bar 18 as hereinbefore described is such that the sealing bar 18 and the lower support bar 20 engage the packaging film 11 and 11a therebetween as the package 24 is moved upon the conveyor and the cutting ribbon 19 is brought into engagement with the film after sealing to sever same. As hereinbefore explained each individual package 24 is sealed therebetween, but the lowering of the cutting ribbon into severing engagement with the sealed surfaces may be timed so as to sever same between any selected number of joined packages. This operation is carried on successively in timed sequence so that a continuous flow of packaged buns or other articles are moved off the conveyor 25.

As hereinbefore described, as the packages 24 move along the conveyor the individual sections thereof are sealed by the sealing wheel 34 rotating in pressure contact therewith and the edges may be sealed by the edge of the sealing wheels 42 rolling in pressure contact therewith. The tear lines may be formed along the upper I sealing film 11 by the scoring wheels 8 and 9, and a longitudinal perforation line may be formed along the sealed area 89 by the perforator wheel 36 so as to provide either the package shown in FIGURES VIII-IX or X-XI.

It will be understood that other and further forms of the invention may be devised without departing from the spirit and scope of the appended claims.

Having described our invention we claim:

1. Means for forming packages for articles from two sheets of plastic film comprising, guide means for guiding the sheets of film in close proximity, upper and lower gripping means arranged to be brought into pressure contact with the sheets of film therebetween; a transverse sealing bar carried by one of the gripping means arranged to be brought into pressure contact with the sheets after being pressed together to seal same; a transverse cutting member arranged to be brought into contact with the sealed surface to sever same; conveyor means to move articles to be packaged toward the gripping means; and means moveable above the conveyor means toward the gripping means engageable with the articles to push the articles into contact with the sealed edges of the sheets of film as the film advances between the gripping means after the gripping means has been retracted.

2. The combination called for in claim 1 with the addition of spaced scoring means running in pressure contact with one of the sheets of film to provide spaced longitudinal score lines intermediate, edges of the film be fore the film reaches the gripping means to facilitate tearing the film to separate segments of the film after a package is formed.

3. Means for forming packages for articles from two sheets of plastic film comprising, guide means for guiding the sheets of film in close proximity, upper and lower gripping means arranged to be brought into pressure contact with the sheets of film therebetween; a transverse sealing bar carried by one of the gripping means arranged to be brought into pressure contact with the sheets after said sheets are pressed together to seal same; a transverse cutting member arranged to be brought into contact with the sealed surface to sever'same; conveyor means to move articles to be packaged toward the gripping means; and means movable above the conveyor means toward the gripping mean engageable with the articles to push the articles into contact with the sealed edges of the sheets of film as the film advances between the gripping means after the gripping means has been retracted; a conveyor member arranged to receive and convey the sealed packages away from the gripping members after they have been retracted; and a central scoring member in rotative contact with one of the sheets of film to press same against the other sheet of film and seal same thereto as the packages move along the conveyor.

4. The combination called for in claim 3 with the addition of edge scoring members at each edge of the package arranged to press the sheets of plastic film together in sealing engagement as they move along the conveyor.

5. The combination called for in claim 4 with the addition of means to grippingly engage the edges of the film in spaced relationship at each side of the package as the edge scoring members are brought into sealing contact therewith.

6. The combination called for in claim 3 with the addition of a perforating member arranged to run in pressure contact with the sealed area formed by the central scoring member to provide a perforated line therealong.

7. The combination called for in claim 5 with the addition of means to sever the sheets of plastic material along the edges of the package outwardly of the edge sealing members to trim excess film therefrom as it moves along the conveyor.

8. The combination called for in claim 7 with the addition of suction means to receive and convey away the excess material trimmed from the edges of the plastic sheets.

9. The combination called for in claim 1 with the addition of means to vary the intervals of time between the lowering of the cutting member into severing'relationship to the sealed surface relative to the time interval of sealing.

10. The combination called for in claim 1 with the addition of a conveyor member arranged to receive and convey the sealed packages away from the gripping means after the gripping means have been retracted; spaced gripping means at each side of the packages arranged to receive and grippingly engage the edges of the film; and a heated cutting member at each side of the conveyor member and extending between the spaced gripping means to sever and seal the sheets of plastic material along the edges of the packages as the packages move along the conveyor.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,971,305 2/1961 Webster et a1. 53-182 X 3,195,285 7/1965 Toss 53-182 X 3,320,111 5/1967 Lucia et a1 53-182 X 3,357,151 12/1967 Monaghan 53-180 X 3,114,994 12/1963 Joa 53-182 3,191,356 6/1965 Zelnick et al. 53-372 X 3,355,857 12/1967 Tobey 53-372 X 3,385,024 5/1968 Piazze et a1. 53-29 FOREIGN PATENTS 262,943 12/ 1963 Australia.

THERON E. CONDON, Primary Examiner E. F. DESMOND, Assistant Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 53-372

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3628306 *May 26, 1970Dec 21, 1971Jams LtdPackaging apparatus
US3640051 *Apr 13, 1970Feb 8, 1972Cloud William S JrTube-forming packaging machine
US3672116 *May 11, 1970Jun 27, 1972Kooperativa FoerbundetMethod and machine for packaging goods
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Classifications
U.S. Classification53/553, 53/374.8, 53/373.5, 53/374.4
International ClassificationB65B9/02, B65B9/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65B9/026
European ClassificationB65B9/02C