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Publication numberUS3648433 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 14, 1972
Filing dateDec 16, 1969
Priority dateDec 16, 1969
Also published asCA927270A, CA927270A1, DE2051772A1
Publication numberUS 3648433 A, US 3648433A, US-A-3648433, US3648433 A, US3648433A
InventorsOwen Dave L
Original AssigneeGrace W R & Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Bagging table and protective cloth dispenser
US 3648433 A
Abstract
Disclosed is a table apparatus for bagging food products, particularly bone-in cuts of fresh meat. The table is preferably a dual station device and is provided with bone cut protective cloth storage racks; cloth cutters; cloth feed roller assemblies; a radiating arm, rotatable bag storage rack; and loading chutes.
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United States Patent Owen [ Mar. 1M, 1972 BAGGING TABLE AND PROTECTIVE CLOTH DISPENSER 2,885,850 s/1959 Smith ..53/25s 2,977,732 4/1961 Leonard et al.. ...53/390 x 3,206,910 9/1965 Lindstrom ..53/25s x Primary ExaminerRobert L. Spruill Attorney-John J. Toney, William D. Lee, Jr. and Edward J. Hanson, Jr.

[57] ABSTRACT Disclosed is a table apparatus for bagging food products, particularly bone-in cuts of fresh meat. The table is preferably a dual station device and is provided with bone cut protective cloth storage racks; cloth cutters; cloth feed roller assemblies; a radiating arm, rotatable bag storage rack; and loading chutes.

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\ GWEN BAGGING TABLE AND PROTECTIVE CLOTH DISPENSER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to a bagging table and to a dispenser for protective cloth. More particularly, the invention relates to a table for packaging bone-in cuts of fresh red meat and to a protective cloth dispenser suitable for use therewith.

In the prior art there has long been a need for a bagging work table having all necessary components located for operating ease and efficiency. This has been a particularly true since the use of bone-cut protective cloths as described in US. Pat. No. 2,89l,870 became common. A satisfactory bagging table must provide means for dispensing the protective cloth, for storing various size bags not in use, and forloading the meat cuts into the bags. The present invention, accordingly, has as a primary object, the providing of such a table with all the elements thereof located for operating ease and efficiency.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide protective cloth feed roller means which eliminates runback from the cloth-cutting zones.

It is another object of the present invention to provide a bagging table having loading chutes and a bag storage rack.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In satisfying these and other objects, a bagging table has been constructed which includes as integral components thereof the elements mentioned above. The bagging table is novel in its simplicity and in its unique combination of components.

Of the many advantages derived, one prime benefit is that different size meat cuts may be bagged without modification to the table. The loading chute arms are unequal lengths and will accommodate either large or small cuts of meat. Likewise, the bag storage rack has a number of rods over which may be draped various size bags for the various sizes of meat cuts to be packaged. Operating personnel simply select the correct bag size for the cut which is to be packaged, and after slipping the bag over the end of the loading chute arms, push the meat cut into the bag and thereafter slide the meat and bag off the loading chute arms. Large bags for large cuts of meat are pulled around all of the loading chute arms; whereas, smaller bags for smaller cuts of meat are only pulled over the inside chute arms.

Prior to bagging, protective cloth is placed over the protruding bones of the meat cut to prevent damage to the plastic bags ordinarily used in packaging. This cloth is fed from roll packages through a slot in the table, to antirunback feed rollers, and thereafter to a conveniently located cutter means. Runback of the protective cloth from the cutters is prevented by a simple, but unique wedge action in the feed rollers which allows cloth to travel in only one direction.

Furthermore, the protective cloth, when threaded through the dispensing system, acts as a tie-in member. The presence of the protective cloth maintains the guide rollers and feed rollers in operative locations by forcing these rollers into their respective slot positions. The protective cloth roll packages themselves are mounted on angled support pins depending from the frame of the table.

Since the table is preferably a dual station apparatus, two operators may bag meat cuts at the same time. For this reason two loading chutes, two protective cloth roll racks and two feed roller and cutter assemblies are provided on generally opposite sides of the table. However, if desired, the table can be a single station device by eliminating appropriate components.

Other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following brief description of the drawings and discussion of the preferred embodiment.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is an overall side elevation view of the bagging table. FIG. 2 is an overall end elevation view of the bagging table.

FIG. 3 is a detailed view of the antirunback feed rollers in clamping position.

FIG. 4 is a more detailed view of the antirunback rollers in feed position.

FIG. 5 is a sectional view of guide rollers taken along section 55 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 6 is an isometric view of the table frame assembly.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT GENERAL ASPECTS OF APPARATUS The principal components of the dual station bagging table as previously indicated are the bag storage rack 8, the cutter assemblies 9, the cloth feed roller assemblies 10, the loading chute assemblies 11, and the protective cloth storing and dispensing assemblies 12. A pair each of these components are seen in FIG. 1 integrally connected with, and located on op posite sides of table 7, (except for the single bag storage rack 8 which is located at the center of one end of the table).

The table itself comprises table top member 13 adapted to fit over frame 14. The table top 13 and the frame 14 are preferably of stainless steel material. Other components of the bagging table apparatus such as the loading chutes, bag storage rack, etc. are also preferably formed of stainless steel material to prevent rusting and like damage.

As can be seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, no components, other than the arms of the bag storage rack, protrude beyond the outer periphery of the bagging table apparatus. This is a preferred configuration since it allows operating personnel to work near the edge of the table without danger or hindrance.

Also seen in FIG. 1 are the adjustable feet 15 which are screwed into the leg portions of the table frame 14. These feet 15 are preferably sphere shaped and equipped with notched portions 16 which allows wrenches or like tools to be employed in screwing the feet up and down into the frame legs and to thereby compensate for nonunifiorm floor surfaces. The adjustment also allows the table height to be varied to correspond to the height of additional apparatus which may be used in conjunction with, and alongside the bagging table.

Furthermore, it should be noted that the guide rollers and rollers employed in the feed roller assemblies are all mounted in drop-in slots. This is preferred for convenience and other reasons explained more fully in the following. The rollers are held in operative location by the force of the protective cloth action thereagainst.

EASE OF DISASSEMBLY ANlD ASSEMBLY Another beneficial feature of the bagging table apparatus is the ease with which most of the components may be removed from the table and the ease with which the table top itself may be detached from the frame. These aspects of the present invention are important since they allow convenient main tenance and cleaning.

The bag storage rack assembly 8 is detached from the table by simply lifting rack support rod 17, (as seen in FIG. 1), from rack rod guide member 18, (as seen in FIGS. 1, 2, and 6), which is fabricated into one end of table frame 14. Loading chute assemblies 11, seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, may be removed from the table top by unscrewing bolts 19, (seen in FIG. 1). These bolts 19 are screwed in the support members 20 of the loading chute assembly 11 through the reinforcing plates 21 and the underside of table top 13. The reinforcing plates 21 appear most clearly in FIG. 6.

The frame members 22, which support feed roller assemblies 10 and cutter assemblies 9, are attached by bolts 36 to longitudinal support member 24 which. is the best seen in FIG.

6. Longitudinal support member 24 is located below the slot 23 of the table top 13 and allows sufficient space on either side for dispensing the protective cloth material through the slot.

Subsequent to removal of the three aforesaid components the table top 13 itself, which is preferably formed stainless steel sheet, may be simply lifted off the table support frame assembly 14. What remains are the components substantially as seen in FIG. 6. Assembly in the reverse of disassembly and may be carried out with equal ease.

Following is a more detailed discussion of the particular components of my invention. Each component is discussed with respect to its function and preferred configuration. It should be noted though, that some of the discussion, particularly with respect to function, is directed for simplicities sake, to single stations of the bagging table rather than both stations. In these cases, the criterion set forth for one bagging station applies to two stations as well.

STORAGE RACK ASSEMBLIES In FIGS. 1 and 2, I have shown the two protective cloth storage rack assemblies 12, located on opposite sides of the table. These assemblies comprise in their essential elements, hollow mounting tubes 25 positioned by locating holes 38 onto angled, support posts 26.

Two rolls 27 and 28 of protective cloth material with center support tubes 29 are shown positioned on one of the mounting tubes 25. In normal operation both storage rack assemblies would have protective cloth mounted thereon. The support assemblies 12 are constructed so that either single, wide rolls of protective cloth may be used or so that two or more smaller rolls may employed coaxially on the same mounting tube and be dispensed side by side through the system.

Several aspects of the dispensing and supporting assemblies 12 are quite important. For instance, it is preferred that the support posts 26, (which are affixed to frame assembly 14), be angled somewhat upwardly. Such an arrangement allows mounting tubes and rolls of material to be easily installed. It also prevents rolls from sliding off during use. Furthermore, when protective cloth is pulled off the roll in a manner as seen in FIG. 2, the forces created between the mounting tubes 25 and the support posts 26 together with the locating holes 38, create a locking couple between the mounting tubes 25 and the support posts 26. The locking couple is essentially the twisting force exerted on the support posts by the contacting surfaces of locating holes 38. This force is due to rotation of the mounting tube when protective cloth is being dispenses therefrom.

GUIDE ROLLERS As seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, a single layer of the dispensing cloth 30 is withdrawn from the bottom of roll 27 then passed over guide rollers 31 through table slot 23; through feed roller assembly 10, and to cutter assembly 9. The guide rollers 31 are mounted at both ends in slotted support members 32. The support members are affixed to the underside of the frame assembly 14.

Guide rollers 31 are positively located in the slots 39 by the force of the cloth material acting thereagainst. These guide rollers and the similar feed rollers of the feed roller assembly are all mounted in drop-in slots for ease of operation, maintenance, ease of removal and simplicity of design.

Several novel features of the guide rollers 31 (and likewise of the rollers employed in feed roller assembly 10) may be best appreciated by referring to FIG. 5 which is a sectional view of one guide rollers 31. The guide roller has a solid mounting shaft 33 and two independent tubes 34 and 35 that are slipped over the shaft 33 for rotation thereon. The tubes 34 and 35 are coaxial with the shaft 33. The shaft is preferably a heavy solid stainless steel rod with its end machined down to fit into slots 39.

The separate tubes 34 and 35 allow adjacent side by side sheets or rolls of protective cloth to be dispensed through the system so that the passage of protective cloth from one roll does not affect the disposition of cloth from the other roll. For instance a cloth sheet in contact with tube 34 will cause tube 34 to rotate about shaft 33. Cloth adjacent to tube 35; however, will not be pulled through the system since tubes 34 and 35 are separate. These tubes will only act in unison when a cloth sheet is employed whose width is sufficient to engage both tubes.

The shaft 33 acts as a bearing surface for tubes 34 and 35. In addition, the previously noted weight of the shaft aids in maintaining the rollers stationary while cloth is being dispensed thereover, and in providing a damping action for smooth cloth passage. In a typical applications one roller weights approximately 4 pounds.

FEED ROLLER ASSEMBLY In FIGS. 1 and 2 the protective cloth after passing over guide roller 31, travels upward through slot 23 to describe a double curved path between the rollers of the feed roller assembly 10. The function of these rollers, whose configuration is preferably identical to that of guide roller 31, may be best appreciated by referring to FIGS. 3 and 4.

The feed roller or antirunback assembly comprises emntially top roller 40 and lower, locking roller 41 whose axis is parallel to the axis of top roller 40; slot 42 for top roller 40, and slot and ramp 43 for lower locking roller 41. These slots are fashioned in the support member 44, (the overall appearance of support members 44 and slots 42 and 43 is shown in FIGS. 1 and 2). Although it is necessary that roller 41 be in somewhat free floating position, roller 40 may less preferably be more positively located than the manner shown, e.g., by a shaft mounted in a completely encompassing bearing surface.

In FIG. 3, the rollers are seen in locking position with the protective cloth 30 clamped therebetween. The cloth is held immobile by the two rollers and resists downward pulling forces such as from an out of balance dispensing roll. In clamping position, it is preferred that the end portion 50 of roller 41 not contact the wall 37 of ramp slot 43. The wall 37 is fashioned in support member 44 only as a matter of convenience and does not act as a stop for roller 41. This roller is prevented from further travel down the ramp slot 43 by its contact with upper roller 40. To employ wall 37 as an additional stop would require precise, expensive machining as is not necessary. The previously noted weight of rollers employed aids in providing a secure clamping action.

In FIG. 4 the feed rollers lie in feed position. Cloth, when pulled toward the cutter assembly, in the direction noted, will force the lower locking roller 41 to ride up the guide ramp 43. Since the rollers are no longer engaged, the cloth may be easily pulled through. Subsequently, when the outwardly pulling force is no longer applied, the locking roll 41 will proceed down the ramp 43, once again to grip the cloth between itself and upper roll 40.

Since the feed rollers are identical to the previously described guide rollers, adjacent, or side-by-side sheets of protective cloth may be dispensed, so that the passage of cloth from one roll does not effect the disposition of cloth from the other roll.

CLOTH CUTTER In FIGS. 1 and 2, cutter assembly 9 is shown. This cutter assembly is essentially a serrated blade 36 against which operating personnel pull the protective cloth for cutting in a conventional manner. However, unlike the other components of the bagging table the cutter blade is preferably chromium plated in order to improve its durability and performance. The cutter blade is mounted onto support member 44, and is easily removed by screws 45 for sharpening or replacement.

BAG STORAGE RACK As seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, bags are stored for use on the radiating anns, or rods, 51 and are brought within easy reach of the operating personnel by simply revolving the upper part of the assembly into the desired position. Up and down adjustment is also provided by sliding support rod 17 in support guide member 18; and then, when the rack is at the desired height, by tightening, locking collar 53. If further up and down adjustment is necessary, locking collar 53 is loosened, the

desired adjustment preformed, and the collar subsequently retightened.

it is usually desirable to provide a slip agent between bags in a stack or to use bags with a slip agent on their outer surfaces. This slip agent such as corn starch or any other suitable powder reduces the friction between adjacent bags in the stack and allows one bag to be removed without disturbing or pulling off the other bags in the stack. A stack of bags is illustrated by 54.

BAGGING AND APPLYING PROTECTIVE CLOTH After a sufficient quantity of the protective cloth has been cut, operating personnel mold and wrap cloth over the protruding bones of the meat out which is to be packaged. This is illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2, by meat cut 45 which has its end portions covered with sections of protective cloth 46 and 47.

The meat cut 45 is shown cradled in the parallel chute arms of loading chute assembly 11. Also shown is plastic bag 48 which is pulled over the innermost, but longest of the chute arms 49. If a larger meat cut were to be packaged a proportionately larger bag would be selected from the bag storage rack assembly 8 and pulled over both inner chute arms 49 and outer chute arms 50. It should be noted that the chute arms are generally parallel to the long axis of the table.

In the application pictured in FIGS. 1 and 2, all that remains to complete the bagging of the meat cut is to first, push the cut completely into the bag, and secondly, to further shove the now bagged meat cut and bag off the ends of the loading chute arms.

The plastic bags employed are preferably although not necessarily of thermoplastic material. The plastic bags are also preferably heat shrinkable. This is true because bags employed with the bagging table are usually subjected to a heat shrinking operation after being loaded. Additional steps of a typical operation also include vacuumizing to reduce spoilage and subsequently sealing or clipping together of the bags open end to form an air tight package. The additional apparatus employed in these steps is often incorporated with the bagging table to form a total, meat processing system.

The protective cloth employed may be any kind of material suitable for this purpose which may be dispensed; handled, and cut in the aforesaid manner. Nonwoven, woven, knitted, or other suitable fabrics may be employed. As indicated previously, a particularly useful protective material is described in U.S. Pat. No. 2,891,870.

I claim:

l. A bagging table for bagging bone-in meat cuts comprismg:

a. a frame member;

b. a table top member located on said frame member, and having a slot therein for passage of protective sheet material therethrough;

c. a first assembly mounted on said frame member for supporting rolls of bone-cut protective cloth material;

d. a guide roller mounted in support brackets affixed to said frame member for guiding said protective cloth from said first assembly through said slot in said table top member;

e. an antirunback feed roller assembly;

f. a cutter for said protective cloth, and

g. a loading chute for inserting meat cuts into a bag.

2. A bagging table according to claim 1 including a rotatable bag storage rack for storing different size bags, and wherein:

a. said table top member is formed from sheet material, and fits over the upper portion of said frame member, and is detachably connected thereto;

b. said first assembly comprises a hollow mounting shaft mounted by holes at its ends on upwardly angled support rods which are affixed to said frame, and wherein said rolls of protective cloth are on support tubes coaxially disposed on said hollow mounting shaft for rotation thereon;

c. said guide roller is mounted at both ends thereof in slots in said support brackets, and wherein said guide roller comprises a solid mounting shaft with two when coaxially disposed on said solid mounting shaft for rotation thereon;

d. said antirunback feed roller assembly includes antirunback feed rollers mounted at both ends thereof in slotted support brackets affixed by intermediate support members to said frame member wherein said rollers comprise an upper roller and a lower locking roller disposed on parallel axis and wherein the slot for said lower locking roller is a slanted ramp and wherein said lower locking roller at the lower portion of said slanted ramp contacts said upper roller to lock protective cloth located therebetween and prevent runback, and wherein said lower locking roller when force is applied thereagainst by protective cloth being pulled through said antirunback feed roller assembly rides upwardly on said slanted ramp to disengage with said upper roller;

e. said cutter is a chromium plated serrated blade;

f. said loading chute comprises at least two parallel long inside arms and two parallel short outside arms, said arms all essentially parallel to the long; axis of said table, and wherein said meat cuts to be bagged are craddled in said arms, and wherein said rotatable bag storage rack has at least two radiating rotatable rods for draping bags thereover, and wherein said rack is vertically adjustable with respect to said bagging table.

3. A bagging table according to claim I wherein said table is a dual station apparatus and includes: two said first assemblies, said first assemblies mounted on opposite sides of said table; two said guide rollers, one on a respective said opposite side; two said antirunback feed roller assemblies, one on a said respective opposite side; two said cutters; one on a said respective opposite side; and two said loading chutes, one on a said respective opposite side.

4. A bagging table for bagging bone-in meat cuts comprismg:

a. a frame member;

b. a table top member located on said frame member and having a slot therein for passage of protective sheet material therethrough;

c. a first assembly mounted on said frame member for supporting rolls of bone-cut protective cloth material;

d. an antirunback feed roller assembly including:

1. an upper roller whose position is fixed;

2. a lower locking roller whose position is movable with respect to said upper roller, and

3. at least one ramp on which said lower locking roller moves;

e. a cutter for said protective cloth, and

f. a loading chute for inserting meat cuts into a bag.

5. An apparatus according to claim 4 wherein the axis of said upper roller and said lower locking roller are parallel; wherein two ramps support both ends respectively of said lower locking roller; wherein said ramp is upwardly inclined whereby the lower position of said ramp is lower than the position of said upper roller; wherein said lower locking roller at its lower travel on said ramp contacts said upper roller, and wherein said lower locking roller at the upper portion of its travel on said ramp does not contact said upper roller.

6. An apparatus according to claim 5 wherein said rollers include solid mounting shafts and tubes disposed coaxially thereover for rotation thereon and, wherein protective cloth sheet is located between said rollers whereby said lower locking roller at its lower travel on said ramp locks said sheet, and whereby said sheet when pulled through said apparatus causes said lower locking roller to move to the upper portion of its travel on said ramp.

7. An apparatus according to claim 6 wherein said upper roller is mounted at both ends thereof in respective drop-in slots of two support brackets and wherein the ramps on which said lower locking roller moves comprises portions of said two support brackets.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2593325 *Dec 7, 1948Apr 15, 1952Swift & CoPoultry packing table
US2885850 *Dec 10, 1956May 12, 1959Barker Poultry Equipment CompaCommodity packaging machine
US2977732 *Aug 1, 1958Apr 4, 1961United Gas Industries LtdMeat-stuffing machine
US3206910 *Jul 25, 1962Sep 21, 1965Hormel & Co Geo APigs' foot packing apparatus
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3731863 *Dec 20, 1971May 8, 1973Union Carbide CorpDispenser cutter for tacky materials
US4081096 *Jul 22, 1977Mar 28, 1978Union Carbide CorporationCantilevered belted bag loading method
US5014495 *Jan 31, 1990May 14, 1991Bolejack Kevin JMethod and apparatus for bagging product units
US5046302 *Feb 15, 1989Sep 10, 1991Transfresh CorporationMethod and apparatus for bagging product units
US5111639 *Mar 27, 1991May 12, 1992Transfresh CorporationMethod and apparatus for bagging product units
US5314286 *Jan 8, 1993May 24, 1994Transfresh CorporationApparatus for bagging product units
US5544468 *Aug 17, 1994Aug 13, 1996Preferred Packaging Systems, Inc.Portable shipping station
US5575894 *Jan 25, 1995Nov 19, 1996Gas Research InstituteWater and organic constituent separator and stripper system and method
USRE30791 *Sep 17, 1979Nov 10, 1981Union Carbide CorporationCantilevered belted bag loading apparatus
Classifications
U.S. Classification53/255, 53/389.4, 53/390, 53/389.3
International ClassificationB65B67/00, B65B67/10
Cooperative ClassificationB65B67/10
European ClassificationB65B67/10