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Publication numberUS3627229 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 14, 1971
Filing dateAug 27, 1970
Priority dateAug 27, 1970
Publication numberUS 3627229 A, US 3627229A, US-A-3627229, US3627229 A, US3627229A
InventorsElmer O Wangerin
Original AssigneeEastman Kodak Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Strip-feeding apparatus and method
US 3627229 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Inventor Elmer 0. Wangerln Rochester, N311.

Appl. No. 67,455

Filed Aug. 27, 1970 Patented Dec. 14, 1971 Assignee Eastman Kodnlt Company Rochester, N.Y.

STRIP-FEEDING APPARATUS AND METHOD 13 Claims, 5 Drawing Figs. V

11.8. C1 242/2110, 242/71.8, 242/195 int. C1 ..Gl1111115/66, B65h 17/06 Field 01 Search 242/192, 195, 197, 210, 198, 74,741, 74.2, 71.8; 352/158, 157

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,015,860 10/1935 May 242/74 2,529,501 11/1950 Johnston 242/74 3,291,409 12/1966 McClellan 242/192 3,467,340 9/1969 Rosenburgh 242/197 Primary Examiner-George F. Mautz Artorneys-Robert W. Hampton and John D. Husser ABSTRACT: The outermost convolution of a roll of strip material is transversely compressedl by the opposed flanges of a reel on which such strip is wound. Upon rotation of the reel about the roll axis, a roller arm temporarily flexes successive opposed regions of the flanges away from each other as such regions are respectively rotated therepast. Such local flexing of the flanges releases corresponding successive portions of the outermost convolution of strip material on the reel from transverse compression and effects a separation and feeding of l the leading strip end from the rotating roll.

WENTED 552141972 ELMEFI 0., WANGER N INVENTOR.

W" A T TORNE YS CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION Reference is made to commonly assigned copending U.S. Pat. application Ser. No. 67,456, entitled APPARATUS FOR FEEDING STRIP MATERIAL, filed in the name of Elmer O. Wangerin concurrently herewith on Aug. 27, I970.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1 Field of the Invention The present invention relates to unwinding of strip material from a reel or other support for use at a predetennined location, and more particularly to an improved apparatus and method by which the separation and feeding of a leading, i.e., free, end portion of strip material from a convoluted roll of such material is facilitated. Moreover, this invention relates to a novel reel adapted to restrain the outen'nost convolution of strip material wound thereon from sliding off the reel, and to a novel flange-flexing structure used with such reel for automatically feeding the wound strip therefrom.

2. Description of the Prior Art Sensitized material presently used for the recording and playback of audio and/or visual information frequently takes the form of a weblilte strip. Generally, such strip material is of a plasticlikeflexible substance, such as, for example Mylar," which has a tendency when coiled to straighten out. Consequently, when a strip of the sensitized flexible material is wound on a reel for storage, as is the common commercial practice, the material s straightening-out propensity may induce the leading edge and successive portions of the reeled strip to slide, i.e., spill, offthe reel in an unwinding manner.

To prevent this spilling of the stored strip off the reel, magazines or other protective containers are often provided to house the reel and secure the material wound thereon; however, a common deficiency of the aforementioned strip-securing structures isthat each container must be removed before the reel and wound material can be used. During removal from and insertion back into the container, the strip material is no longer secured and therefore subject to unwinding and spillage from the reel. Further, in some instances the strip material on the reel is identified by markings on the particular container therefor so that a separation of the reel from its particular container creates the possibility of a loss of identification of the strip material.

Recently, magazine reel units have been devised, such as disclosed incommonly assigned U.S. Pat. No. 3,467,340,. in which a strip-bearing reel is rotatably mounted and retained within a protective container during storage and feeding of strip material from the reel to a location outside the container for use. In the aforementioned U.S. patent, the leading end of flexible strip material wound on the reel is caused to separated from the strip roll and enter a guide channel by flexing successive regions of the reel flanges toward one another as the reel is rotated in an unwinding direction and, thereby transversely squeezing successive portions of the outermost convolutions of the roll. Since the resilient strip material resists being Iongitudinally flexed or bowed in transverse opposed directions, the leading end of the moving strip is caused to move tangentially outwardly from the strip roll and into contact with a generally cylindrical internal guide surface deflned by a peripheral guide member substantially surrounding the roll, whereby the leading end of the strip is directed into the previously mentioned guide channel.

Although the kind of strip storing and feeding system disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,467,340 is very reliable, it is generally necessary to first orient the magazine in the stripfeeding station before feeding the strip material from the reel to a location outside the magazine for use, and to hold the magazine in such an oriented position during the strip feeding. Moreover, the requirement of the specially formed magazine adds to production time and costs. Accordingly, it can be seen that a need exists for a reel which, without the assistance of a magazine, selectively restrains the outermost convolution of strip material wound thereon from spilling off such reel, and which is preferably used with means to facilitate automatic feeding of the leading strip edge from the reel.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide novel and improved strip-handling apparatus for supporting a roll of strip material and for feeding a leading strip end from a roll so supported.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a novel and improved method for releasably securing the leading end of a roll of strip material and for feeding such a released strip end from the roll.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a reel and strip feed apparatus combination for supporting a roll of strip material and feeding a leading strip end from a roll so supported.

Still another object of the present invention is to provide a storage reel adapted to restrain the outermost convolution of strip material wound thereon from spilling off the reel, and to provide a device operable with such reel to feed the leading strip end from the reel for use at a predetermined location.

In accordance with a preferred embodiment of the present invention the outermost convolution of a supported roll of strip material is transversely compressed or pinched between force-applying members, such as the opposed flanges of a reel on which such strip is wound, whereby the outermost strip convolution is restrained from separating from the roll and is rotatable with the reel. Upon rotation of the reel about the roll axis, a flange-flexing structure located adjacent the reel temporarily flexes successive opposed regions of the flanges away from each other as those regions are respectively. rotated therepast. Such local flexing of the flanges, in turn, temporarily releases corresponding successive portions of the outermost convolution of strip material on the reel from transverse compression and effects a separation and feeding of the leading strip end from the rotating roll at a location immediately rear ward, in the direction of unwinding, from the flange-flexing structure. This separation and feeding of the leading end of the outermost convolution is brought about, as described in commonly assigned U.S. Pat. No. 3,467,340, because the transverse compression of trailing portions of that convolution causes the leading end, when released from the reel flanges, to move outwardly towards the outer periphery of the rotating reel.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The abovementioned and other features and objects of the present invention and the manner of obtaining them will become more apparent by reference to the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment of such invention taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings,

wherein:

FIG. I is a perspective view of a reel, on which the outermost convolution of wound strip material is transversely compressed by the reel flanges, and a flange-flexing structure in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the present invention, showing the manner in which the leading strip end is fed from such reel;

FIG. 2 is a plan view of the reel and wound strip material, showing a portion of the reel removed for the purpose of illustration;

FIG. 3 is a section of the reel and wound strip material as viewed along the line 3-3 in FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a partial elevated view as seen from the lower side of FIG. 1; and

FIG. 5 is a plan view of the reel and flange-flexing structure disposed in one schematically illustrated embodiment in which they can be used.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the drawings and in particular to FIGS. 1-3, there is shown a reel 1 having an inner cylindrical hub member 2 of appropriate width to accommodate the desired width of strip material and of sufficient diameter to provide means, such as for example a spindle bore 3, for the rotatable mounting of the reel. Suitable structure (not shown) may be provided at the reel hub for facilitating attachment thereto of the trailing end of an elongate strip of web material S wound on the reel in a convoluted roll or coil. As shown, the reel has a pair of circular flanges or guide surfaces 4 and which extend radially outwardly in uniform spaced relation from the reel hub to inclined flange portions or areas 6 and 7, thereby providing closely adjacent lateral support for the strip convolutions Cl disposed between the reel hub and such flange portions (see FIG. 3). It can be seen in FIG. 3 that the spacing between the inclined portions 6 and 7 gradually diminishes in a radial outward direction to a dimension slightly less than the width of the strip 8. Consequently, the outermost convolution, i.e., the peripheral winding, C2 of the wound strip S is transversely squeezed or compressed by the pressure exerted by the flange portions 6 and 7 on the longitudinal edges of such strip convolution; and therefore, the outermost convolution of the wound strip S is restrained from unwinding ofi the reel and is held for rotation therewith.

Although in the illustrated embodiment, only the outermost convolution C2 of the wound strip S is transversely compressed by the reel flanges 4 and 5 as shown in FIG. 3, it will be appreciated that further strip convolutions contiguously succeeding inwardly from the outermost convolution can be similarly compressed.

The reel I may be formed of any suitable material; however, a material which permits easy flexure away from each other of successive opposed peripheral regions of the inclined flange portions 6 and 7 has, as will become apparent hereinafter been found to be particularly desirable. The reel flanges 4 and 5' shown in FIGS. 1-3 are constructed of a resiliently flexible plastic material and, because of the dimension between the outer portions 6 and 7 thereof, will be inherently biased toward and transversely pinch therebetween the outermost convolution C2 of the wound strip roll S which has a greater width dimension than the space between the outer portions of the reel flanges.

A preferred embodiment of the apparatus used with the reel I to effect feeding of the wound strip 8 from the reel for use, is shown in FIGS. 1, 2, 4, and 5. The spindle bore 3 of the reel can be mounted on a driven spindle of the conventional type or the reel can be mounted on other suitable holding and positioning structure. With respect to the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 5, the strip-feeding operation will be described with the reel mounted on a spindle 11 which is rotated by the drive meansl2. Such drive means is adapted to rotate the reel in a strip unwinding direction 13, i.e., clockwise as viewed in FIGS. 1 and 5, about the axis [4 of the wound strip roll. Located adjacent the reel on an axis of rotation 15 parallel to the rotational axis 14 of the reel is a shaft I6 having mounted thereon in spaced relation a pair of circular rollers 17 and 18 respectively with inwardly beveled edges 19 and 20, see FIG. 4. The shaft 16 is mounted for rotation on an arm 21 which is pivotally mounted on shaft 22 and urged towards the reel 1 by a spring 23 or other such means. The rollers 17 and 18 are spaced on the shaft 16 so that upon pivoting of the arm 2! about the shaft 22 towards the reel, the tapered roller edges l9 and 20 respectively contact opposed, outer peripheral regions of the reel flanges 4 and 5 so as to flex those regions of the reel flanges away from each other and, as shown in FIG. 4, release from transverse compression the corresponding portion of the outermost strip convolution C2 located between the inclined flange portions 6 and 7. Although in the illustrated embodiment, the rollers 17 and 18 are not'driven and merely idle on the reel flanges, it will be readily apparent that suitable drive means can be imparted to the shaft 16 so as to drive the reel by this means rather than by the drive spindle 11 which engages the reel as shown in FIG. 5.

Because the outennost convolution C2 of the wound strip roll S is transversely pinched by the reel flanges 4 and 5, as shown in FIG. 3, such convolution will be supported for rotation with the reel 1. Upon rotation of the reel about the roll axis 14 as previously described, the opposed rollers 17 and 18 temporarily flex successive opposed regions of the outer flange portions 6 and 7 away from each other as those regions are respectively rotated past the rollers. This local flexing of opposed regions of the flange portions, in turn, temporarily releases corresponding successive portions of the outennost strip convolution C2 from transverse compression thereby, see FIGS. 1 and 4. When the leading edge portion L on the outerrnost convolution of the wound strip S is rotated with the reel in the direction 13 of unwinding to a location immediately preceding the rollers 17 and 18, those opposed regions of the flange portions 6 and 7 alongside the rollers will be flexed apart, whereupon the leading strip edge is released by the flange portions and the transversely compressed trailing portions of the outennost convolution C2 cause the leading edge to move radially outward towards the outer peripheral edges 8 and 9 of the rotating reel. The leading edge portion L of the outermost strip convolution is so moved outwardly because, as described in commonly assigned U.S. Pat. No. 3,467,340, the pinched portions of the outermost strip convolution which trail the leading edge portion thereof cause the latter released portion to assume a longitudinally straight condition due to resistance of the strip material to beflexed simultaneously both along and transversely to its longitudinal axis. Therefore, in accordance with the present invention, the leading strip edge portion L is fed from the rotating reel as shown by FIG. 1.

As can be seen in FIGS. 1 and 4, the opposed rollers 17 and 18 respectively have annular surfaces 24 and 25, which cooperate with the longitudinal edges of the feeding strip S to guide such strip in a predetermined direction; however, it will be appreciated that other means are available to facilitate such strip guiding. For example, a guide channel (not shown) could be positioned adjacent the rollers 17 and 18 at the illustrated location wherein the leading strip edge L of the outermost convolution C2 of the wound strip S is fed from the reel 1.

FIG. 5 schematically illustrates the reel 1 and the flange flexing structure 16-25 of the present invention as it can be utilized with apparatus in which a strip feed path is provided for feeding of the strip material S which is, in this instance, photographic film having images thereon to be projected by a projection viewing system. If the reel is mounted on the drive spindle 11, as described hereinbefore, it will be rotated by the drive means 12 in the direction 13 to effect feeding of the wound strip from the reel. The strip is then fed along the path between suitable drive and idler rollers 30 and 31, past the optical system 32 and onto a takeup reel 33.

It will now be appreciated by those skilled in the art that the novel reel and the novel means and procedure for feeding of strip material therefrom provide a simple and effective system for storing and easily utilizing strip material of the type adapted to be wound on reels.

It will be further appreciated that a novel apparatus and method have been disclosed for effecting feeding of strip material wound on a reel to a predetennined location adjacent the reel for subsequent use, and that such apparatus need not necessarily incorporate the reel and flange flexing structure specifically disclosed herein.

The present invention has been described in detail with particular reference to a preferred embodiment thereof, but it will be understood that variations and modifications can be effected within the spirit and scope of the invention.

lclaim:

l. Strip-handling apparatus for supporting a coil of strip material and for separating a leading strip portion from a coil so supported, said apparatus comprising:

means for supporting a coil of strip material for rotation about the coil axis;

drive means for rotating said supporting means and a supported coil in an unwinding direction;

means defining a plurality of consecutive regions, each disposed in a first position, for respectively transversely flexing contiguous portions of a peripheral winding of strip material on a coil supported by said supporting means, said consecutive regions each being biased toward said first position and movable between said first position and a second position spaced from its respective contiguous portion of the peripheral winding on a supported coil; and

means for successively moving said consecutive regions of said flexing means from said first position to said second position as said supporting means is rotated in an unwinding direction by said drive means, whereby corresponding portions of a peripheral winding of strip material on a supported coil are successively released from transverse squeezing by said consecutive regions.

2. Etrip handling apparatus as recited in claim ll, wherein said consecutive regions of said flexing means are resiliently flexible portions of a reel flange which are inherently biased toward said first position.

3. Apparatus for separating a leading end of an elongate strip of web material from a convoluted roll of such material, said apparatus comprising:

a hub member for supporting a roll of convoluted strip material wound thereon;

a pair of guide surface means arranged in spaced relation for transversely squeezing therebetween the outermost convolution of strip material on a roll supported by said hub member, at least one of said guide surface means being resiliently flexible for movementaway from the other of said guide surface means;

drive means for rotating said hub member about the axis thereof; and

means for flexing successive regions of said one of said guide surface means away from the other of said guide surface means as said hub member is so rotated by said drive means, whereby corresponding successive portions of the outermost convolution of strip material on a sup ported roll are successively released from transverse squeezing by said pair ofguide surface means.

4. Apparatus as recited in claim'3, wherein said pair of guide surface means respectively comprises opposed flange members mounted on said hub member for rotation therewith, and wherein said means for flexing successive regions of said one of said guide surface means is mounted for movement between an idle position spaced from said flange members and a flange flexing position interjacent opposed regions of said flange members.

5. Apparatus as recited in claim 4, wherein said means for flexing successive regions of said one of said guide surface means comprises a pair of rotatably mounted roller elements arranged in spaced relation to each other, and wherein said flange flexing position is one at which each of said roller elements respectively contacts a peripheral edge of one of said flange members.

6. Apparatus for feeding a strip of web material from a convoluted roll of such material to a predetermined location adjacent the roll, said apparatus comprising:

a hub member for supporting a roll of convoluted strip material wound thereon;

first and second guide surface means mounted on said hub member in spaced, opposed relation for transversely compressing therebetween the outermost convolution of strip material on a roll supported by said hub member;

said first and second guide surface means having opposed regions thereof which are resiliently flexible away from each other to separate from corresponding portions of the outermost convolution of strip material on a supported roll;

means defining a strip guide between said predetermined location and a supported roll;

means for rotating said hub member, said first and second guide surface means and a supported roll in an unwinding direction; and

means located adjacent said hub member for successively flexing said opposed regions of said first and second guide surface means away from each other as those regions are respectively rotated past said flexing means, whereby a leading end of the outermost convolution of strip material on a supported roll is fed from such roll.

'7. Apparatus as recited in claim s, wherein said first and second guide surface means respectively comprise generally circular flange members radially disposed about the axis of rotation of said hub member, and wherein said flexing means is mounted for movement between an idle position spaced from said flange members and a flange-flexing position interjacent opposed regions of said flange members.

8. Apparatus as recited in claim 7, wherein said flexing means comprises:

a roller member;

bearing means supporting said roller member in radial alignment with the said flange members for rotation about a roller axis parallel to the rotational axis of said hub member; and

means defining on said roller member two opposed conical surfaces coaxial with said roller axis and respectively engageable with opposed, peripheral regions of said flange members to flex such engaged] regions of said flange members away from each other.

9. Apparatus as recited in claim 8, wherein said means defining a strip guide between said predetermined location and a supported roll comprises:

two opposed annular surfaces located on saidroller member and coaxial with said roller axis, said annular surfaces being respectively engageable with successive, opposed longitudinal edge portions of the outermost convolution of strip material on a supported roll as a leading end thereof is fed from such roll.

10. Apparatus for feeding an elongate strip of web material from a convoluted roll of such material to a predetermined |ocation adjacent the roll, said apparatus comprising:

means for supporting a roll of convoluted strip material for rotation about the roll axis;

drive means for rotating said supporting means and a roll supported thereby in an unwindling direction about the roll axis;

means, attached to said supporting means, for removably applying a compressive force transversely to the outermost convolution of strip material on a supported roll to restrain the convolution from separating from such supported roll;

means, disposed between said predetermined location and said supporting means, for guiding strip material from a supported roll to said predetermined location; and

means, located adjacent said supporting means and cooperable with said compressive force-applying means, for locally releasing said compressive force from successive portions of the outermost convolution of strip material on a supported roll as such successive portions are respectively rotated alongside said releasing means by said drive means, whereby a leading strip end is separated from the supported roll.

llll. A method of feeding a leading end of an elongate strip of web material from a convoluted roll of such material, said method comprising:

applying a transversely flexing force to the outermost convolution of strip material on a convoluted roll thereof; while,

rotating the convoluted roll of strip material in an unwinding direction about the roll axis; and

releasing, at a predetermined location, said transversely flexing force from successive portions of the outermost convolution of strip material on the roll as such successive portions of the convolution are moved respectively past said predetermined location by such unwinding rotation of the roll.

12. Apparatus for separating a leading end of an elongate strip of web material from a convoluted roll of such material supported by a reel between two opposed flange members thereof, wherein the flange members are inherently biased towards each other to transversely compress therebetween the outermost convolution of strip material on a roll supported by the reel, and wherein opposed regions of the flange members are resiliently flexible away from each other to separate from corresponding portions of the outermost convolution of a supported roll, said apparatus comprising:

means for rotating such reel and supported roll in an unwinding direction; and

means for successively flexing the opposed regions of the flange members away from each other as those regions are respectively rotated past said flexing means in an unwinding direction by said rotating means.

13. Apparatus for feeding an elongate strip of web material from a convoluted roll of such material supported by a reel between two opposed flange members thereof, wherein at least one flange member is inherently biased toward the other flange member to transversely compress therebetween the outerrnost convolution of strip material on a roll supported by the reel, and wherein successive regions of the one flange member are each resiliently flexible away from the other flange member to respectively release corresponding portions of the outermost convolution on a supported roll, said apparatus comprising:

means for supporting such reel and supported roll for rotation about the axis of the roll; means for rotating the reel and supported roll in an unwinding direction about the roll axis; means for successively flexing the regions of the one flange member away from the other flange member as those regions are respectively rotated past said flexing means by said rotating means, whereby corresponding portions of the outermost convolution of the supported roll are successively released from transverse squeezing by the flange members to separate a leading end of such convolution from the roll; and means, fon'ning a part of said flexing means, for guiding the leading end of the outermost convolution of the supported roll from the roll.

i It i i t

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4072280 *Apr 29, 1976Feb 7, 1978Interdyne CompanyTape and/or film handling mechanism
US5092535 *Apr 5, 1989Mar 3, 1992Canon Kabushiki KaishaFilm transport apparatus
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Classifications
U.S. Classification242/332, G9B/15.92, G9B/15.76, 242/348.3
International ClassificationG11B15/60, G03B21/32, G11B15/67, G03B21/43
Cooperative ClassificationG03B21/43, G11B15/60, G11B15/67, G03B21/323
European ClassificationG03B21/43, G03B21/32B2, G11B15/60, G11B15/67