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Publication numberUS3640426 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 8, 1972
Filing dateNov 12, 1970
Priority dateNov 12, 1970
Publication numberUS 3640426 A, US 3640426A, US-A-3640426, US3640426 A, US3640426A
InventorsMarvin H Hammer
Original AssigneeMarvin H Hammer
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Device for sequentially dispensing sets of sheets
US 3640426 A
Abstract
A collating feeder for sequentially dispensing individual sets of sheets from a stack of crisscrossed sets. The stack is supported by two alternatively operative escapement means that oscillate into engagement with alternate sets to dispense the sets sequentially.
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United Mates Patent Hammer Feb. 8, 1972 [54] DEVICE FOR SEQUENTIALLY DISPENSING SETS 0F SHEETS [72] Inventor: Marvin H. Hammer, 1724 West Mulberry Drive, Phoenix, Ariz. 85015 [22] Filed: Nov. 12, 1970 [21] Appl. No.: 88,578

[52] US. Cl. ..221/67, 271/41, 214/85 K [51 1 Int. Cl ..B65g 59/06, B65n 3/30 [58] Field ofSearch ..27l/4l,6l,44, l;214/8.51(,

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,210,548 l/l9l7 Shaver ..27l/44 R 2,385,267 9/1945 Franz ..214/8.5 K 2,937,785 5/1960 Muller ..22l/67 Primary ExaminerJoseph \Vegbreit Attorney-Warren F. B. Lindsley v [57] ABSTRACT A collating feeder for sequentially dispensing individual sets of sheets from a stack of crisscrossed sets. The stack is supported by two alternatively operative escapement means that oscillate into engagement with alternate sets to dispense the sets sequentially.

8 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures DEVICE FOR SEQUENTIALLY DISPENSING SETS OF SHEETS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to apparatus for dispensing sheets of paper arranged in sets, and more particularly to a device which dispenses the lowermost set or group of sheets of a stack of sets wherein the sets are arranged in an offset or crisscross manner.

1. Field of the Invention This invention is particularly directed to apparatus which includes stack supporting means which engages with the lowermost set of sheets in a stack of crisscross sets of sheets to support the stack and to sequentially dispense each set of sheets.

2. Description of the Prior Art At the present time collators have been provided for dispensing single sheets or articles from an evenly arranged stack of such objects. Cam means carefully disengage the lowermost sheet or article in the stack to provide a smooth transfer of the load from the stack supporting means to a conveyor. One of the problems of the prior art is to avoid the stack supporting means from disengaging the lowermost sheet or article in a stack until after the apparatus engages and holds the second lowermost sheet or article.

This requirement in single sheet dispensing devices is difficult to achieve. In accordance with the invention claimed a collating feeder is provided which accomplishes these features for sets of sheets stacked in a crisscross arrangement.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The collating feeder disclosed accepts in crisscrossed arrangement sets of sheets which are sequentially delivered from a stack to a conveyor means.

It is, therefore, one object of this invention to provide an improved collating feeder for sets of sheets.

Another object of this invention is to provide an improved collating feeder for stacks of crisscrossed sets of sheets which dispenses each set individually.

A further object of this invention is to provide an improved collating feeder in which the hopper may be loaded without stopping the collating action.

A still further object of this invention is to provide an improved collating feeder for set of sheets which is completely mechanical.

A still further object of this invention is to provide an improved collating feeding device in which the device continuously feeds sets of sheets for collection with the limited output of fixed station collators so that the output capacity of the collator is increased.

Further objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent as the following description proceeds and the features of novelty which characterize this invention will be pointed out with particularity in the claims annexed to and forming part of this specification.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING The present invention may be more readily described by reference to the accompanying drawing in which:

FIG. I is a side view of the drive side of the collating feeder showing sets of sheets alternately stacked in a feeding hopper and embodying the invention;

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view of the collating feeder shown in FIG. 1 taken along the line 2-2;

FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of FIG. 2 taken along the line 3-3;

FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the collating feeder shown in FIG. 2 taken along the line 4-4 showing the crank arm and lever mechanism that causes an article feeder disk to oscillate;

FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view of FIG. 4 taken along the line 5-5;

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view of FIG. 4 taken along the line 6-6;

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view of FIG. 4 taken along the line 7-7;

FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view of FIG. 7 taken along the line 8-8;

FIG. 9 is a partial enlarged view of the feeder disk shown in FIG. 2;

FIG. 10 is a view of the rocker arm for shifting the feeder disk in one position; and

FIG. 11 is a view of the rocker arm shown in FIG. I0 in another position.

DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring more particularly to the drawings by characters of reference, FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrate a collating feeder 10 comprising a supporting structure or frame 12, employing a pair of spaced-apart parallel side rails 14 and 16 connected together at one end by a fixed transverse crosrail 20 and intermediate their ends by an adjustable transverse crosrail 22. Crossrail 20 is provided with laterally extending stub shafts 24 which are pivotably retained in blocks 26 fixedly mounted on a platform 28. By pivotably mounting rails 14 and 16 on platform 28, the angular relationship between frame 12 and platform 28 may be changed so that changes in the gravitational effect on the documents contained within a hopper of the collating feeder may be made. As best seen in FIG. I the angular rela tionship is illustrated as approximately 45.

As best seen in FIGS. 2 and 3 the fixed crossrail 20 has mounted on it a pair of vertically positioned spacedly arranged blocks 30 rotatably supporting a first or lower cam shaft 32. Pivotally mounted on blocks 30 and in rotating arrangement with cam surfaces 33 on cam shafts 32 are a pair of spacedly arranged cam operated lower holding means 34 hereinafter described in more detail.

The adjustable crossrail 22 as shown in FIGS. 4 and 6 is provided with a pair of spacedly arranged downwardly depending mounting blocks 36 in which a second or upper cam shaft 38 is joumaled for rotation. Pivotally mounted on frame 22 and in rotating arrangement with a cam surface 39 on cam shafts 38 are a pair of spacedly arranged cam-operated upper holding arm means 40 hereinafter described in more detail.

The lower and upper cam shafts 32 and 38, respectively, are driven by a drive means 42 which is coupled through a drive chain 44 to a suitable power source (not shown) such as an electric motor. The electric motor may be a part of an associated collator causing timing of the collating feeding device and collector to be synchronized or may be associated only with the collating feeder providing its own timing function.

Drive means 42 is illustrated as being driven by sprocket 46 which is mounted on the lower cam shaft 32. Also mounted on cam shaft 32 is a second sprocket 48 which is coupled to the upper cam shaft 38 by a chain 50. Chain 50 drivingly engages sprocket 52 carried on cam shaft 38. Drive means 42 is provided with conventional chain tensioning idler sprockets 54 and 56 mounted on side rail 16.

A hopper 58 is provided on frame 12 and is adapted to handle sets or stacks of documents 60 which have been previously arranged in crisscross or offset relationship. The hopper is adjustably mounted on the frame so that the collator 10 will not be limited to handling documents of only one size. The stacks or sets of documents 60 are fed into the top 62 of hopper 58 and are dispensed out the bottom 64 of the hopper to any conventional collector means such as, for example, a conveyor belt (not shown). The manner in which the hopper is disposed with respect to frame 12 and the collator mechanisms hereinafter described makes it unnecessary to stop the apparatus to load more sets of paper into the hopper.

The hopper S8 is adjusted laterally with respect to frame 12 to accommodate documents of different lengths. As best seen in FIG. 2, the lateral adjustments are made by moving lower angular supports 66, and upper angular supports 68.

The lower angular supports 66 are each carried on an L- shaped bracket 70 which is longitudinally positionable on an angular crossbar 72 which is fixedly mounted above crossrail by suitable spacers 74.

The upper angular supports 68 are each carried on L- shaped brackets 76 which are slidably carried and lockable in clamps 78 carried on side rails 14 and 16.

The hopper 58 is also adapted for longitudinal adjustment with respect to frame 12 so that the hopper may accommodate documents of different widths. To accomplish this longitudinal adjustment, the hopper is provided with an angular plate 80 which is adapted to abut the edges of the documents. Plate 80 is carried on an angular crossbar 81 which is fixedly attached to and mounted in spaced relationship above adjustable crossrail 22 by upstanding spacers 82. When longitudinal adjustment of the hopper is desired, crossrail 22, crossbar 81, and plate 80 are moved along the length of side rails 14 and 16 and are firmly affixed in position by clamps 84 which may engage any of the holes 86 which are provided in spaced increments along the side rails.

The collator mechanism comprises lower holding means 34, upper holding means 40, and an escapement means 88.

The lower holding means 34, as hereinbefore described, each comprises an L-shaped lever 90 pivotably mounted on block at 91 and is provided with a document engaging finger 92 which is disposed to extend into the bottom 64 of hopper 58. A roller or cam follower 94 is rotatably mounted on lever 90 and is positioned to engage cam surface 33 provided on cam shaft 32. The lever is biased toward this cam shaft by a spring 98 so as to hold the cam follower 94 in continuous engagement with the periphery of cam surface 33.

The upper holding means shown in FIGS. 4 and 6 also comprises a pair of identical structures each comprising an L- shaped lever 100 pivotably mounted to crossrail 22 and is provided with a document engaging finger 102 which is disposed to extend into the bottom 64 of hopper 58. Lever 100 is biased by spring 104 in the direction of cam shaft 38 so that a cam follower 106 rotatably mounted on lever 100 will be held in contiguous engagement with cam surface 39 carried on cam shaft 38.

The upper and lower holding means 34 and 40 are adapted to alternately engage and release documents in accordance with a timed mode of operation as will be described.

The escapement means 88 is carried on crossrail 22 and, as best seen in FIGS. 4 and 5, is driven by drive means 110 coupled between cam shaft 38 and the escapement mechanism 88. A first bevel gear 112 is mounted on the cam shaft 38 and is positioned thereon to drivingly engage a second bevel gear 114 which is carried on one end of a shaft 116 rotatably journaled on crossrail 22. A crank arm 118 is fixed to the other end of shaft 116 and is connected on the outermost end thereof to one end of a link 120. The link 120 is connected on its other end to a crank arm 122. The crank arm [18 will travel in a complete circular path about the shaft 116, and this motion is transmitted through link 120 to provide reciprocal motion, through an arcuate segment, to crank 122. As best seen in FIG. 5, crank arm 122 will reciprocate between the solid line position and the broken line position.

The crank arm 122 is connected to the upper end of shaft 124 to couple the reciprocal movement to the escapement means 88.

The escapement means 88 is supported on a connector plate 126 attached to adjustable crossrail 22. Plate 126 extends from rail 22 in the direction of hopper 58 and is provided with a suitable bearing 128 in the extending end thereof. The shaft 124 is journaled in bearing 128 and extends downwardly therefrom through a friction clutch device 130 and terminates in an enlarged collar 132. A pair of thin flat plates 134 and 136 are connected to the bottom of collar 132 by pairs of slide pins 138. The plate 134 is formed with a protruding point 135, and plate 136 is provided with a similar point 137. The slide pins 138 transmit the reciprocal motion of shaft to the plates 134 and 136 and also permit the hereinafter described longitudinal displacement of the plates with respect to the shaft.

The reciprocal motion of the plates 134 and 136, and their effect on the sets of documents 60 is best seen in FIG. 9. The plates are shown in solid lines in the intermediate position and will reciprocate between the dashed line positions. That is, when motion is imparted in the clockwise direction the plate 134 will move to position 1340 and plate 136 will move to position 136a. When the motion is reversed, plate 134 will move to position 134k and plate 136 will move to position 13Gb. The relative positions of protruding points and 137 are also shown in the dash line positions.

The longitudinal displacement of plates 134 and 136 with respect to shaft 124 is best seen in FIGS. 10 and 11 wherein the two extremes of the reciprocal motion are depicted. An inverted T-shaped lever 140 is pivotably mounted to the periphery of collar 132 by means of a screw 142. The screw 142 causes the T-lever 140 to move with the shalt 124 from the position shown in FIG. 10 to the position shown in FIG. 11 and to reciprocate therebetween. The upwardly extending portion or shank 144 of T-lever 140 is provided with a clutchengaging pin 146 which loosely engages a downwardly depending bifurcated member 148 of a clutch disc 150. The clutch disc 150 is adapted to resistingly move in response to the force exerted upon it by the clutch engaging pin 146 of T- lever 140. Resistance to motion of clutch disc 150 is accomplished by its being frictionally sandwiched between an upper clutch plate 152 and a lower clutch plate 154. The upper clutch plate 152 is affixed to the bottom of connector plate 126 and the lower clutch plate 154 is connected to, and biased toward the upper clutch plate 152 by suitable bolts 156 and springs 158 shown in FIGS. 7 and 8.

As the T-lever 140 moves between the two extremes of its reciprocal motion, the motion is yieldingly resisted by the clutch device 130 as hereinbefore described. The yielding resistance causes T-lever 140 to pivot about screw 142 between two extremes of pivotal movement shown in FIGS. 10 and 11. The T-lever is coupled by pivot links 160 to the plates 134 and 136 so that as the T-lever pivots, the plates will be alternately drawn toward and extended from the collar 132 thereby longitudinally displacing the plates.

OPERATION As one of plates 134 and 136 moves to extend its point to a position beneath hopper 58, the other plate will be retracting its point from beneath the hopper. The extending plate will be simultaneously displaced in an upward direction and the retracting plate will be displaced in a downward direction. This constantly repeated sequence of motions causes the extending point to move up into holding engagement with the next-to-lowest set of documents andwill bepositioned above the lowest set. While this motion is occurring in the extending point, the retracting point will be moved downwardly and out of engagement with the lowest set of documents. The lowest set will then be dropped from the bottom of the hopper as alternate portions of the holding means 34 and 40 are timed to release the lowest set as the retracting point becomes disengaged therefrom. The heretofore next-to-lowest most set now becomes the lowest set and the sequence of operations are repeated.

Although but one embodiment of the invention has been shown and described, it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that various changes and modifications can be made without departing from the spirit of the invention.

What is claimed is:

1. In an apparatus for dispensing the lowermost set of papers from a stack of crisscross sets of papers, the combination comprising:

a supporting structure,

a hopper having an inlet and an outlet mounted on said structure,

an escapement means mounted at the outlet of said hopper comprising a pair of cooperating parts,

each of said parts being movable relative to the longitudinal axis of said hopper and laterally of said movement,

one of said parts being engageable with the bottom of the lowermost set of papers while the other of said parts being out of engagement with the sets in said stack, and means mounted on said supporting structure for rotatively moving one of said parts into engagement with the lowermost paper of said lowermost set of papers, moving the other of said parts upwardly of the longitudinal axis of said hopper to the lowermost paper of the second lowermost set of papers, and rotatively moving said second part laterally of said longitudinal axis of said hopper into position for supporting said second lowermost set of papers,

whereby said lowermost set of papers is dropped out of said hopper while the second lowermost set of papers in the stack is supported by said second part.

2. The apparatus set forth in claim 1 wherein a second means is provided for causing said cooperating parts of said escapement means when actuated by said means to rotate in unison in the same direction.

3. The apparatus set forth in claim 2 wherein said second means for causing rotation of said cooperating parts simultaneously also causes lateral displacement of said parts a predetermined distance.

4. In an apparatus for dispensing the lowermost set of papers from a stack of crisscross sets of papers, the combination comprising:

a supporting structure,

a hopper having an inlet and an outlet mounted on said structure,

an escapement means mounted at the outlet of said hopper comprising a pair of cooperating parts,

each of said parts being movable relative to the longitudinal axis of said hopper and laterally of said movement,

one of said parts being engageable with the bottom of the lowermost set of papers while the other of said parts is out of engagement with the sets of papers in the stack,

first and second stack supporting means carried by said supporting structure, said first stack supporting means being movable between an operative position wherein it is in engagement with the lowermost paper of said lowermost set of papers in the stack to an inoperative position wherein it is out of engagement with the sets of papers in the stack and wherein said second stack supporting means is moved in synchronism with said first stack supporting means to an inoperative position where it is out of engagement with the sets of papers in the stack and to an operative position wherein it engages and supports the second lowermost set of papers in the stack,

interengageable cam means mounted on said supporting structure and interengageable with said stack supporting means for moving said first and second stack supporting means from their operative positions in contact with the respective sets of paper in the stack into their inoperative positions out of contact with the sets of paper in the stack,

and first means in synchronism with the movement of said first and second stack supporting means for sequentially rotatively moving one of said parts out of engagement with the lowermost paper of said lowermost set of paper, moving the other of said parts upwardly of the longitudinal axis of said hopper to the lowermost paper of the second lowermost set of papers, and rotatively moving said second part laterally of said longitudinal axis of said hopper into position for supporting said second lowermost set of papers,

whereby said lowermost set of papers is dropped out of sad hopper while the second lowen'nost set of papers in the stack is supported by said second part and said second stack supporting means.

5. The apparatus set forth in claim 4 wherein second means are provided for causing said cooperating parts of said escapement means when actuated by said first means to rotate in unison in the same direction.

6. The apparatus set forth in claim 5 wherein said second means for causing rotation of said cooperating parts simultaneously also causes lateral displacement of said parts.

7. The apparatus set forth in claim 6 wherein sard second means causes a lateral displacement of said parts substantially equal to the thickness of a set of said papers.

8. The apparatus set forth in claim 1 wherein means are provided for adjusting the size of said hopper.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1210548 *Aug 17, 1915Jan 2, 1917Underwood Typewriter CoOffset-preventing device for stenciling-machines.
US2385267 *Jan 21, 1942Sep 18, 1945Ata Mfg Company IncCup-separating and dispensing machine
US2937785 *Jul 11, 1956May 24, 1960Opal Mfg CompanyArticle release mechanism
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5454688 *Jan 5, 1993Oct 3, 1995Electrocom Automation, L.P.Automated order system having a compound angle dispenser matrix and a dispenser cartridge
US5556254 *Jun 7, 1995Sep 17, 1996Standard Duplicating Machines CorporationPaper set feeding
US5820334 *Jan 17, 1996Oct 13, 1998Standard Duplicating Machines CorporationPaper set feeding
US6113344 *Dec 1, 1999Sep 5, 2000Roll Systems, Inc.Method and apparatus for sorting stacks
US6126384 *Nov 7, 1997Oct 3, 2000Standard Duplicating Machines CorporationPaper set feeding
US7417752 *Jul 2, 2001Aug 26, 2008Pitney Bowes Inc.Method and system for customized mail piece production utilizing a data center
US20030004824 *Jul 2, 2001Jan 2, 2003Joshi Uday W.Method and system for customized mail piece production utilizing a data center
EP0830303A1 *Jun 4, 1996Mar 25, 1998Standard Duplicating Machines CorporationPaper set feeding
EP0905068A2 *Sep 25, 1998Mar 31, 1999Roll Systems, Inc.Method and apparatus for sorting stacks
Classifications
U.S. Classification221/67, 414/798, 414/796.1, 271/113
International ClassificationB65G59/06, B65H3/30
Cooperative ClassificationB65G59/062, B65H2701/18266, B65H2301/422, B65H3/30, B65H2404/662
European ClassificationB65G59/06B2, B65H3/30