|Publication number||US3653757 A|
|Publication date||Apr 4, 1972|
|Filing date||Feb 5, 1970|
|Priority date||Feb 5, 1970|
|Also published as||DE2104791A1|
|Publication number||US 3653757 A, US 3653757A, US-A-3653757, US3653757 A, US3653757A|
|Inventors||Harley M Newcomb|
|Original Assignee||Apeco Corp|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (4), Referenced by (13), Classifications (6)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
United States Patent N ewcomb  WEB FED PI-IOTOCOPY MACHINE HAVING IMPROVED LENGTH SETTING AND CUTTING MEANS  Inventor: Harley M. Newcomb, Bensenville, Ill.
 Assignee: APECO Corporation  Filed: Feb. 5, 1970  Appl. No.: 8,983
 US. Cl ....355/l3, 83/205, 355/28  Int. Cl. ..G03g 15/00 v  Field oiSearch ....355/13, 10, 11, 14, 27, 28,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS V p 3,424,526 1/ 1969 Sacre .,.355/66 X 1 Apr. 4, 1972 3,452,627 7/1969 Goodman et al ..83/205 X 3,460,453 8/1969 Gold ..355/28 X 3,445,160 5/1969 Helland ..355/ll Primary Examiner-Samuel S. Matthews Assistant Examiner-Richard L. Moses Attorney-Wolfe, Hubbard, Leydig, Voit & Osann [5 7] ABSTRACT 11cm w-stem PAFEMTEWR 4 \922 8, 658 T57 mmlnrs FIG. I b F l3 l4 EXPos/NG STATION 3 INVENTOR 4 HARLEY M. Newcone PATEHTE'JAPR 4 m2 SHEET 2 [IF 5 Inveu'roa HARLEY M. NEWCOMB I NVENTOR HARLEY M,NEWCOMB A-rrvs.
SHEET 3 BF 5 PATENTEDAPR 4 I972 PATENTEDAPR 4 I972 SHEET 4 BF 5 km W 3 HARLEY M. Nswcoma PMENTEWR 4 m2 3,653,757
SHEET 5 OF 5 /61 FIG, I3
I? K3A 56 L l5 'n v vo C5228? f5H 712%? ROLLERS 22 lumen-row. HARLEY M .Newtona WEB lFED PHOTOCOPY MACHINE HAVING IMPROVED LENGTH SETTING AND CUTTING MEANS It is an object of the invention to provide a photocopy machine of the moving table type which has a sizable reservoir of photocopy paper in the form of a continuous web fed from a roll with improved means for severing the web to secure a copy sheet of desired size. It is a more specific object to provide a photocopy machine of this type in which the adjustment of a pointer into alignment with the end of the original document on the table serves automatically to produce a copy sheet of the same length as the original document.
It is another object to provide a photocopy machine having an improved web cutting arrangement in which the action of the cutting blade occurs quickly yet silently, free of the loud thumping which accompanies the cutting operation in conventional machines of the web fed type. It is a related object to provide a cutting arrangement in which the web is progressively severed by an oscillating blade which rocks through a small angle, starting promptly with zero loading, with maximum velocity and maximum power during the cutting portion of the stroke and which is immediately but smoothly decelerated at the end of the stroke for prompt return.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a photocopy machine of the web type in which the portion of the web still secured to the roll is maintained stationary for cutting by a stationary cutter but in which the portion of the web forming the copy sheet continues its movement through the machine at a constant speed accurately synchronized with the speed of the table. It is a more specific object to provide a cutting arrangement inwhich the body of the copy sheet is maintained in synchronized motion with the original document at the same time that the trailing portion of such sheet is held stationary pending completion of the out without any effect, transient or otherwise, upon the copy being made.
It is still another object to provide an improved control arrangement for a photocopy machine of the web fed type in whichoriginal documents may be accommodated of widely different length and which utilizes the moving table carrying the original document to initiate operation of a cutting mechanism at a moment which depends upon the length of the original document to create a copy sheet having a trailing edge and which thereafter utilizes such trailing edge to initiate return movement of the table, regardless of its displacement, promptly back to home position.
In one of the aspects of the invention is it is an object to provide an improved form of length setting device on the table of the machine which may be easily and quickly adjusted in accordance with the length of the original document and which is thereafter locked to retain such adjustment free of the possibility of being brushed out of adjustment upon repeated reciprocation of the table.
Also it is an object of the invention in one of its aspects to provide a specific design of cutter actuating mechanism which is capable of driving an oscillated cutter blade with power to spare to insure prompt and clean cutting by a blade of the self sharpening type but which is capable of producing a clean cut under all conditions without interposing any peak loading on the machine drive or on a separate driving motor.
It is a general object of the invention to provide a photocopy machine and control arrangement which is inherently rapid, with the severing of sheets from a roll taking place during the exposure and with the leading edge of the web being automatically advanced to a ready position to minimize delay during successive cycles making the device well adapted for production of multiple copies in quick succession.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent upon reading the attached detail description and upon reference to the drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a vertical section, simplified and somewhat fragmentary, taken along the line 1-1 of FIG. 1a, showing a photocopy machine constructed in accordance with the present invention.
FIG. la is a general view of the machine shown in FIG. 1.
FIG. lb is a diagram showing the switch and probe at the exposing window of the machine in FIG. 1.
FIG. 2 is a plan view of the table at the top of the machine in FIG. 1a.
FIG. 3 is an edge view of the table, in partial section, taken along the line 3-3 in FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary plan view showing the cutter and cutter drive utilized in the machine of FIG. 1.
FIG. 5 is a cross section taken through the cutter along line 5-5 in FIG. 4 with the cutter blade retracted.
FIG. 5a is a figure similar to FIG. 5 but showing the cutter blade at the end of its cutting stroke.
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary section looking along the line 6-6 in FIG. 4.
FIG. 7 is a cross section taken along line 77 in FIG. 4 showing the blade in retracted and fully rocked positions, respectively.
FIG. 8 is a view looking along line 88 in FIG. 4.
FIG. 8a is a section taken through the single revolution clutch along line 8a-8a in FIG. 8.
FIG. 9 is a view looking along line 9-9 in FIG. 8.
FIG. 10 is a fragmentary section taken along the line 10-10 in FIG. 3.
FIG. 11 is a fragmentary section looking in the opposite direction and taken along line l11 1 in FIG. 3.
FIG. 12 is a fragmentary section taken along the line 12-12 in FIG. 3.
FIG. 13 is a schematic control diagram for the photocopy machine.
While the invention has been described in connection with a preferred embodiment, it will be understood that it is not intended to limit the invention to the embodiment shown but it is intended, on the contrary, to cover the various alternative and equivalent constructions included within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.
Turning now to the FIGS. 1 and la of the drawings, there is shown a photocopy machine having a housing 10 and reciprocated table 11 which rides back and forth on rails 12. The table mounts a transparent platen 13 on which the original document, indicated at 14, is placed face-down for thepurpose of making one or more copies during successive cycles of table movement. Controls conveniently mounted upon a panel 15 control the starting and stopping, the selection of number of copies and the like.
The present machine is of the electrostatic type utilizing a continuous roll of copy sheet paper coated with a sensitizing material such as zinc oxide and which is subjected to an electrostatic charge just prior to exposure. When the charged copy sheet is exposed to the light image of an original document, the charge is dissipated from the light-struck areas. The sheet subsequently passes into a developer tray having a liquid vehicle with suspended colloidal particles of pigment, or toner, which is attracted to the charged areas for development of the image. Upon evaporation of the vehicle the copy sheet is discharged from the machine. It will be understood, however, that while this is the preferred environment for the invention to be described, the invention is not limited thereto but may be utilized in office photocopy machines operated in accordance with a different system of exposure and development.
Focusing attention upon the machine shown in FIG. 1, a roll 20 in the form of a continuous web of photocopy paper 21 is mounted in the lower part of the machine. The web passes upwardly between web drive rollers 22 into a cutter 23 having a fixed blade 24 and a rocking blade 25. From the cutter the sheet, now indicated at 31, is passed into a turnaround 32 where the sheet undergoes a change in direction. From the turnaround the sheet passes into a charging unit 34 which is connected to a suitable source of high voltage (not shown). From the charging unit the sheet passes between a pair of constantly driven rollers 35 and into an exposing station 36.
Optically coupled to the exposing station by a lens 37 and mirror 38 is an illuminating station 40 which is traversed by the original document upon movement of the table and which is illuminated by lamps 41.
From the exposing station the sheet moves into engagement with a second constantly running pair of rollers 45 into the developer tray 46 which contains the colloidal suspension of toner. The sheet passing through the developing tray curves upwardly into engagement with a pair of expeller rollers 47 which discharge the sheet into a suitable collection tray 16 (FIG. 1a).
In accordance with the present invention the cutter 23 includes a fixed blade 24 which extends the width of the copy sheet and a cooperating rocking blade is 25, the movable blade, in its open position, being closely spaced and parallel with respect to the sheet to be cut and arranged at a shallow angle so as to produce a progressive out along the width of the sheet with only a limited amount of rocking motion. The cutter frame, indicated generally at 50 is made up of hollow end pieces 51, 52 which are interconnected not only by the fixed blade member 24 but by a channel shaped crosspiece 53. Also extending the length of the frame is a paper guide 54 which, together with the fixed blade member 24, forms a convergent entryway 55 for the entry of the web from below.
For rockably supporting the cutter blade 25, a rocking yoke 60 is provided extending the length of the frame and having stubshafts 61, 62 at the ends thereof. The stubshafts are received in bearings 63, 64 which are resiliently engaged by springs 65, 66. For adjusting blade clearance, set screws 67, 68 are used in opposition to the springs. The longitudinally extending yoke 60 is reinforced by a channel member 69 which is riveted to it to form a backbone.
Comparing FIG. taken at one end of the cutter blade assembly with FIG. 7 taken at the other, it will be noted that the blade is additionally offset at the remote end (FIG. 7), so that cutting of the web takes place progressively from one end to the other. To avoid interference between the corners of the movable and fixed blades when they come together, at the start of a cut cycle, the movable blade is preferably bent at the end as indicated at 70 (FIG. 4) to provide an arcuate lip 71 (FIG. 5 and 5a) which rides upon, and never leaves, the end of the fixed blade. Consequently this insures a sure start" of the blades into cutting engagement free of any peak load under all conditions even when the adjusting set screws 67 and 68 are not in precise adjustment.
In carrying out the present invention a blade driving mechanism is provided for oscillating the blade through a small angle including a single revolution clutch which drives an eccentric which, in turn, drives an arm connected to the blade yoke and with means for triggering the single revolution clutch by movement of the table in accordance with the length of the original document so that the copy sheet is severed at a length corresponding to the length of the original document. Turning to FIGS. 4, 8 and 9, the cutter driving assembly is mounted in a subframe 80. Extending outboard of the subframe is a driven pulley of the cog type indicated at 81 which is driven by a cog belt 82 trained about a drive pulley 83 which is coupled, by means not shown, to a drive motor M. Journaled on the axis of the pulley 81 between the frame plates is a single revolution clutch 85 having a clutch output gear 86 which meshes with an idler gear 87 which, in turn, drives eccentric drive gear 88. Connected to the shaft of the gear 88 is a crank or eccentric 90 which engages a slot 91 formed in an arm 92 which is keyed to the stubshaft 62 which serves to rock the yoke mounting the cutter blade. In operation, when the single revolution clutch 85 is triggered, a single cycle of revolution is imparted to the eccentric 90 causing it to move from the normal position shown in FIG. 9 to the thrown position 90a and back again.
While single revolution clutches are known in the art and are commercially available, the internal construction of the present clutch may be understood upon reference to FIG. 8a. The clutch includes an input member 100 connected to the input pulley 81 and having a drive hub 101. Arranged adjacent the hub 101 is a driven hub 102 formed on the clutch output gear 86. Secured to the hub 102 is one end of a clutch drive spring 103. The other end of the clutch drive spring, indicated at 104, is connected to a release member in the form of a thin cylindrical shell having a blocked surface 106. In the operation of the single revolution clutch the spring 103 is presprung so as to tightly engage the hubs 101, l02provided that the release member 105 is free to rotate. However when the blocking surface 106 on the release member is blocked against rotation, the spring 103 is partially unwound so that slippage occurs between the drive hub 101 and the spring with the result that no torque is applied to the driven hub 102.
For the purpose of normally blocking the release member 105 of the clutch against rotation, an electromagnet 110 is provided having an armature 111 terminating in a finger 112 which is interposed in the path of movement of the blocked surface 106. When the electromagnet is energized, by means to be described, the release finger 112 is lifted slightly out of blocking relation with respect to the surface 106 which permits the spring 103 to grip the hub 101, with the result that driving torque is applied to the clutch output gear 86. Because of the wrap around effect of the spring on the hub 101, the applied torque winds the spring ever more tightly about the hub so that, once the clutch is released, a large amount of torque may be transmitted. To limit the device to a single revolution, the electromagnet 110 is released almost immediately after it is energized, dropping the finger 112 once again into the path of movement of the blocking surface 106 so that only a single revolution of the output gear 86, and a single revolution of the eccentric gear 88, occurs.
In order to insure complete disengagement of the single revolution clutch and to avoid any tendency toward chattering, means are provided for holding the clutch output gear 86 in a position which slightly expands the clutch spring 103. This is accomplished by a thin retaining arm 115 which is mounted, for adjustment, on a plate 116, and the tip of which engages a stop surface, or dog, 117 formed on the end face of the gear 86. When me control finger 112 is blockingly interposed in front of the surface 106 on the single revolution clutch, the output gear 86, and the gears which are connected to it, tend to overtravel slightly, sufficiently, in any event, so that the dog 117 is hooked behind the arm 115 to maintain the clutch spring 103 slightly unwound and hence clear of the hub 101 to insure against transmission of torque.
It is one of the features of the cutter and its driving arrangement that substantially no load is interposed upon the driving motor at the start of the cut so that the cutting stroke may begin promptly and smoothly. Moreover the arrangement between the eccentric and the arm 92 which it engages is such as to provide both maximum torque and maximum speed over the central or cutting portion of the blade cycle. This is accomplished by phasing the members as shown in FIG. 9. Here the cutting portion of the stroke, and direction thereof, is indicated by the curved arrow. It will be apparent that with the members oriented as shown, the angular velocity of the arm 92, and the effective radius of such arm, will both be maximum at the center of the cutting stroke. With both the lever arm and velocity maximum, it follows that the maximum power will be delivered to the knife from the drive mechanism during the cutting stroke. It may also be noted that the effective radius of the arm 92 is a minimum during the return stroke but power requirements are not great during the return stroke since only the friction of the blades must be overcome. The idler gear 87 is preferably mounted on a shaft which is sufficiently long as to permit endwise sliding into a disengaged position to adjust the phase of the eccentric to that shown.
It is one of the main features of the blade and driving arrangement just described that the cutting occurs silently, avoiding the loud thump which usually accompanies operation of a cutting blade in a conventional photocopy machine of the web fed type where a solenoid is used for motive power. A solenoid is inherently disadvantageous since both the speed and applied force tend to increase to a sharp peak at the end of the cutting stroke when neither of these factors are of any use, and when the energy which they represent must be dissipated by impact. By contrast, the present drive makes use of be used.
It is an important and related feature of the present invention that means are provided on the moving table including a manually settable pointer which is aligned with the end of the original document and a triggering member which is coupled to the pointer for triggering the operation of the cutter at a point of displacement of the table which depends upon the length of the original document. Thus in the construction as shown in FIGS. 2, 3, 10, and 11 of the drawings, a length setting mechanism 120 is provided which is fingertip-operated for setting a pointer 121 into a position of alignment with the end of the original document 14 and for simultaneously adjusting, with respect to the length dimension of the table, a trigger 122 which triggers a switch S6 mounted upon the frame of the machine. The switch is electrically connected to the electromagnet 110 which controls the single revolution clutch associated with the cutter. The length selecting mechanism occupiesa small subframe 130 mounted on the table having a finger wheel 131, a pinion 132 driven thereby, a gear 133 and pinion 134, the latter being directly coupled to a long pitch helical cam 135 which carries a cam follower or rider 136 of which the leading end 122 constitutes the trigger. It will be apparent that when the finger wheel 131 is rotated by fingertip pressure the gear train is rotated to rotate the helical cam for positioning of the pointer 121 which results in the appropriate and automatic positioning of the trigger 121.
In accordance with one of the features of the invention the finger wheel 131 is floatingly mounted upon a bell crank 137 which is upwardly biased by a spring 138. The opposite end of the bell crank carries teeth 139 which lockingly engage the teeth of the cam drive pinion 134. Thus, under normal conditions, the finger wheel 131 is out of engagement with the gear train and the helical cam is positively locked in position. To adjust the length setting mechanism, fingertip pressure is downwardly applied against the finger wheel 131 engaging the teeth thereon with the teeth 132 of the pinion and simultaneously retracting the locking teeth 139 so that movement of the finger wheel in one direction or the other can produce corresponding movement of the rider 136 and the pointer and trigger which are mounted upon it. A screw and slot adjustment 140 between the pointer 12] and rider 136 permits precise adjustment of the length of the copy sheet relative to the length of the original document. The correct adjustment is that in which the trigger offset indicated at d3 (FIG. 3) is equal to the original length d2 less the distance d1 (FIG. lb) from the cutter to the near edge of the exposing window, the trip point of switch S2; hence d3=d2d1.
It will be apparent that documents may be copied having a wide range of length. They may be as long as the swept length of the platen on the table, or anything less than this down to a dimension which is slightly longer than the length from the cutter to the drive rollers 35. All that is necessary is to place the original document 14 on the table so that one end thereof coincides with a reference edge 141, following which the finger wheel is pressed and rotated in one direction or the other until the pointer 121 is in its aligned position. With length d3 properly set, relative adjustment of the trigger 122 insures that the length of the copy sheet will precisely match the length of any original document within the range of the machine.
It is one of the features of the present machine that the copy sheet is maintained at a precisely constant velocity, synchronized with the movement of the table, from the beginning to the end of the exposure notwithstanding the fact that the trailing edge of the copy sheet is held stationary during the time that it takes the cutter to operate. This difference of motion is accommodated by forming the copy sheet into a free loop between the cutter and the exposing station with provision for taking up the loop during operation of the cutter. Preferably the loop is formed by causing the copy sheet to turn through an angle of 180 as shown in FIG. 1. In this figure the copy sheet follows the curbed path indicated at 31, riding on internal ribs or the like in the turnaround 32, and which path defines a dimension d1 (see FIG. 1b). When the web is stopped by the web rollers 22 to provide time for the cutter to operate, as will be described in connection with a typical operating sequence, the loop 31, which is unobstructed along its inside surface, is temporarily shortened so that it pulls away from the turnaround guide surfaces and follows the shorter path indicated by the dot-dash line 31a. Because of the rapid operation of the cutter, the loop becomes no shorter than that indicated at 31a so that it remains free and so that the velocity of the copy sheet in the exposing station 36 is not, even transiently, afiected. As soon as severance is complete, the trailing edge of the copy sheet is free to spring back to the position 31, and charging and exposure of the trailing portion of the sheet is completed.
The overall operation of the machine will become clear upon considering the means for driving the various rollers within the machine, the clutches for driving the table forwardly and backwardly, and the positioning of the switches used for interlocking and control purposes. The rollers 35, 45 and 417 are, first of all, directly coupled to the main drive motor M for rotation at forward table speed. The means employed for reciprocating the table have been shown only diagramatically in FIG. 3 in the form of a forward clutch 151 and reverse clutch 152, which are driven by the main drive motor M and which are selectively energized to power a drive pinion 153 which engages a longitudinal rack 154 on the table. For t.:e details of construction of the clutches 151, 152 and the table drive train, reference is made to prior Sacre U.S. Pat. Ser. No. 3,424,526 which issued on Jan. 28, I969. The clutch 155, which is shown in FIG. 1 as interposed between the drive motor and the web drive rollers 22, for rotating the latter at table speed, may be understood to be similar to the clutches 151, 152, or, indeed, may be any clutch of small size capable of clutching a load upon being electrically energized. Switch S4 will be understood to be a home switch which is in the condition shown in FIG. 13 as long as the table is in its home position but which is thrown to its alternate condition (downwardly) whenever the table is away from home. S3 will be understood to be a limit switch which is normally closed but which is opened in the event the table reaches its limit of forward movement.
Switch S8, which will normally be mounted upon the control panel, is momentarily closed to initiate a copying cycle and may be considered to be a pushbutton. When the switch is held down copies will be produced continuously. That is, when the table returns to its home position contact is automatically made in switch S4 (upper contact) to recycle the relay K3 to initiate a further stroke of table movement for production of multiple copies as long as the switch S8 is held closed. Or, the switch may be bridged by a switch in a cycle counter to produce a desired number of copies. The switch S8 serves to trigger a relay K3 having a set of sealing-in contacts K3A as well as single pole, double throw contacts K313.
For the purpose of insuring that only a single pulse of operating current goes to the cutter release magnet 110 associated with the single revolution clutch, a second switch, S7, is connected in series with switch S6 and physically positioned so as to be encountered by the trigger 122 on the table immediately after switch S6 is operated.
Assuming that alternating current is applied to the buses 161, 162 of the control circuit, full wave rectifiers are interposed as shown at 163, 164, 165 for supplying the forward and reverse clutches and for supplying the intermittent drive clutch 155 which controls rotation of the web rollers 22. The
clutch release magnet is of the AC.
type requiring no rectification.
Finally, reference is made to the window switch S2 (see FIG. 1b) which has a probe 170 which has a first obstructing surface 171 which is engaged by the leading edge of the sheet 31 as it enters the exposing station 36 and a second obstruction 172 which is not cleared until the trailing edge of the copy sheet leaves the exposing station. In short, switch S2 is in the condition shown in FIG. 13 as long as there is no sheet in the exposing station but is in its alternate condition as long as any portion of a sheet is in the exposing station.
The operation of the machine with particular reference to the mechanisms which have been described may be more fully understood-upon considering a complete operating cycle.
An original document 14 is placed upon the transparent platen of the table adjacent the reference edge 141. The finger wheel 131 of the length selector mechanism is then pressed and rotated until the pointer 121 is aligned with the end of the original document which causes the trigger surface 122 to be properly located with respect to the cutter switch S6.
It will be understood, for the sake of simplicity, that separate circuitry is provided to turn on the motor M so that rollers 35, 45 and 47 are constantly rotating. The charging unit 33 and the lamps 41 will also be understood to be turned Momentarily pressing the start switch S8, then, energizes relay K3 which seals itself in via contacts K3A and line 175. At the same time closure of contacts K3B on the relay completes a circuit to energize the drive clutch 155 so that the web drive rollers 22 begin to rotate. The web 21 is driven through the narrow gap between the blades of the cutter into the turnaround where the incipient copy sheet 31 forms a loop of 180, passing through the charging unit 33 and into the nip of the rotating drive rollers 35 just ahead of the exposing station.
As the leading edge of the sheet enters the exposing station it engages the probe 170 of the window switch S2 causing the switch to be thrown to its alternate (left-hand) condition. This removes voltage from line 175 feeding the sealing in contacts K3A so that the relay drops out. This does not, however, affect the rotation of the web drive rollers 22 since, as soon as switch S2 operates, a circuit is made to the clutch 155 through switches 53, S6 and the normally closed one of the contacts K3B. At the same time, switching of S2 completes a circuit through switch S3 to rectifier 164 which supplies the forward drive clutch 151. This couples the motor M to the table (FIG. 3) so that the table, with the original document on it, starts to move, the image of the original document being cast upon the moving copy sheet which is then just beginning to enter the exposing window 36.
Switch S4 which signals whether the table is in its home position is thrown from its upper position to its lower position as the table moves away from home.
With the table and copy sheet moving, the next thing that happens is that the trigger 122 on the table engages the cutter switch S6. This breaks the supply circuit leading to roller clutch 155 via the normally closed one of contacts K3B so that the rollers 22 feeding web from the supply roll come to a stop. At the same time, the making of the lower contact of switch S6 completes a circuit via switches S2, S3 to the cutter release magnet 110. This withdraws the control finger 112 from the single revolution clutch which then begins a cycle of rotation, rocking the cutter blade 25 into the web. Almost immediately after the switch S6 is operated, switch S7, which is associated with it (FIGS. 3 and 12) is engaged by the trigger 122 on the table to break the circuit to the cutter release magnet 110 so that the finger 112 falls back into obstructing position, limiting the rotation of the clutch 85 to a single revolution.
Since rollers 35 continue rotating while rollers 22, during the cutting operation, are temporarily stationary, the loop of copy paper indicated at 31 freely shortens, without obstruction, to the position shown dot-dash at 31a. When the blade, driven by the single revolution clutch, completes its cycle, which occurs very quickly, in less than a half second, the tail of the copy sheet is freed, and the sheet, without any change in speed, either transient or otherwise, continues moving through the exposing station 36 until the tail end of the sheet has been exposed and is ready to leave the exposing station.
At this point the portion 172 of the probe 170 is released by the tail of the copy sheet so that the switch S2 is able to restore itself to the original or right-hand position. This breaks the circuit to the forward clutch 151, stopping forward movement of the table at a moment which corresponds to the end of scanning movement of the original document. Closure of the right-hand contact of switch S2 completes a circuit through home switch S4 to the rectifier 163 supplying the reverse" clutch 152 so that the table begins to be driven in the return direction. Upon return of the table to home position switch S4 is restored to its upper position, breaking the circuit to the reverse clutch 152 and causing the table to come to an immediate halt.
Meanwhile the continued rotation of rollers 45, 47 has caused the copy sheet to be propelled into and out of the developer tray 46 where the charged areas forming the image are developed by deposition of toner. After the developed sheet leaves the developer tray the sheet is preferably acted upon by warm air currents to evaporate the toner vehicle so that the sheet is discharged in substantially dry condition.
In the above outline of operating sequence it was, for the sake of simplicity, assumed that the leading edge of the incipient copy sheet started from the cutter position at the beginning of the cycle. For the purpose of reducing cycle time means are, in fact, provided for causing the sheet to be automatically advanced beyond the cutter to a ready position in readiness for a new cycle. This is accomplished by providing a drop-oft", indicated at 122a, on the same member which carries the trigger 122 (see FIG. 3), and spaced from the latter. As previously noted, the trigger 122 actuates switch S6 to initiate operation of the cutter. As the table continues its forward movement, drop-off of the arm of switch S6 at point 122a restores the switch S6 to the condition shown in FIG. 13 so that a :ircuit is temporarily re-made to clutch 155 via switches S2, S3 and the back contact of contacts K3B. This causes the rollers 22 to feed the leading edge of the incipient sheet forwardly until the trailing edge of the preceeding sheet clears the lower edge of the exposing station, whereupon the switch S2 is restored to the condition shown on FIG. 13, deenergizing the clutch 155 and stopping further rotation of rollers 22, with the result that the leading edge of the incipient sheet is positioned approximately at point 33 (FIG. 1) in readiness for a new cycle. This reduces the idle time between successive cycles by approximately 50 percent.
In order to insure that the leading edge feeds evenly in straight condition from the cutter blade into the turnaround 32, the cutter blade is provided with a wedge-shaped filler piece on its front side (FIGS. 4 and 7).
It will be seen that the length selector, cutter and remaining portions of the machine and its control circuitry have fulfilled the objects set forth above in the production of a copy, in a minimum length of time, of an original document of any desired length within the capacity of the machine, simply upon adjusting the length selector and pressing the start button. Operation of the machine is silent and free of the annoying thump which usually characterizes machines of the roll-fed type. Using the present design of cutter, any type or weight of photocopy paper may be handled with ease, and since the load curve of the cutter is smooth, starting from zero and without any sharp peak, the cutter may be driven by the same motor which normally drives the propelling rollers by the simple expedient of training the roller drive belt about the input pulley 81 of the single revolution clutch. Alternatively, a separate, light duty cutter drive motor may be used.
The term photocopy paper used herein is intended to cover any flexible sheet of photocopy medium. The term single revolution clutch" covers a cycling clutch of the mechanically actuated or electrically actuated capable of imparting a full cycle of movement to the cutter upon each actuation thereof. The term yoke" refers to means for supporting the movable blade for rocking movement. The term eccentric includes any means eccentric to the axis of rotation.
I claim as my invention:
1. In a photocopy machine the combination comprising a frame having an illuminating station and an exposing station, a table movably mounted on the frame for supporting an original document with the document aligned with a reference edge at the leading end of the table, means for driving the table forwardly past the illuminating station, means for reversibly driving the table back to a home position, means for transporting a web of sensitized photocopy paper from a supply roll into the exposing station in synchronism with the forward movement of the table, means responsive to arrival of the leading edge of the web at the exposing station for initiating the forward driving means, optical means for projecting the moving image of the document at the illuminating station upon the moving photocopy paper at the exposing station, said transport means including a pair of constantly driven rollers at the exposing station and a pair of intermittently driven rollers associated with the supply roll, a cutter adjacent the intermittently driven rollers, adjustable means responsive to the displacement of the table by a predetermined amount for actuating the cutter during the course of exposure to form a copy sheet, the web between the cutter and the constantly driven rollers being formed into a free loop to provide for take-up by the constantly driven rollers during the time that the cutter is in operation and until the web is completely severed, means actuated incident to departure of the sheet from the exposing station to reverse the movement of the table back to home position, means responsive to incremental movement of the table beyond said predetermined amount for causing said intermittently driven rollers to feed the leading edge of the web an incremental amount to a ready position which lies a short distance ahead of the constantly driven rollers and for thereupon turning off the intermittently driven rollers, means responsive to return of the table to home position for initiating a new cycle of movement of the intermittently driven rollers for production of multiple copies all having the same length as the original document.
2. In a photocopy machine the combination comprising a frame having an illuminating station and an exposing station, a
table movably mounted on the frame for supporting an original document with the document aligned with a reference edge at the leading end of the table, means for driving the table forwardly past the illuminating station, means for reversibly driving the table back to a home position, means for transporting a web of sensitized photocopy paper from a supply roll into the exposing station in synchronism with the forward movement of the table, means responsive to arrival of the leading edge of the web at the exposing station for initiating the forward driving means, optical means for projecting the moving image of the document at the illuminating station upon the moving photocopy paper at the exposing station, said transport means including a pair of constantly driven rollers at the exposing station and a pair of intermittently driven rollers associated with the supply roll, a rocking cutter blade adjacent the intermittently driven rollers having an eccentric drive and a single revolution clutch, adjustable means responsive to the displacement of the table by a predetermined amount for actuating the single revolution clutch to operate the cutter blade to form a copy sheet during the course of exposure, the web between the cutter and the constantly driven rollers being formed into a loop to provide for take-up by the constantly driven rollers during the time that the cutter is in operation and until the web is completely severed and means actuated upon completion of a cycle of forward and reverse movement for initiating an ensuing cycle for production of multiple copies all having the same length as the original document.
3. The combination as claimed in claim 2 in which the loop of web between the cutter and constantly driven rollers extends about an angle of substantially 180.
4. The combination as claimed in claim 2 in which the single revolution clutch is driven by the web transporting means.
5. The combination as claimed in claim 2 in which the single revolution clutch is driven by a separate constantly running motor.
6. In a photocopy machine the combination comprising a frame having an illuminating station, a table movably mounted on the frame for supporting an original document with the document aligned with a reference edge at the leading end of the table, means for driving the table forwardly past the illuminating station and for driving the table reversely for return of the table to a home position, means for transporting a web of sensitized photocopy paper from a supply roll into an exposing station in synchronism with the forward movement of the table, optical means for transporting the image of the document at the illuminating station onto the photocopy paper at the exposing station, a stationary cutter having an oscillatory blade between the supply roll and the exposing station, the cutter being spaced to define a free loop of web between the cutter and exposing station, length setting means including a movable pointer on the table manually alignable with the end of the original document for manual setting in accordance with the length of the original document, cutter actuating means including a responsive member on the frame and a triggering member located along the length of the table so that cutting occurs during the course of exposure, the length setting means being coupled to the triggering member to vary the point of trigger engagement as the table moves forwardly so that a sheet is severed from the web having the same length as the original document, means actuated incident to departure of the sheet from the exposing station for reversing movement of the table, and means actuated upon completion of a cycle of forward and reverse movement for initiating an ensuing cycle for production of multiple copies each having the same length as the original document.
7. In a photocopy machine the combination comprising a frame having an illuminating station, a table movably mounted on the frame for supporting an original document with the document aligned with a reference edge at the leading end of the table, means for driving the table forwardly past the illuminating station and for driving the table reversely for return of the table to a home position, means for transporting a web of sensitized photocopy paper from a supply roll into an exposing station in synchronism with the forward movement of the table, optical means for projecting the image of the document at the illuminating station onto the photocopy paper at the exposing station, a cutter between the supply roll and the exposing station, length setting means on the table including a pointer manually movable along the table into a set position aligned with the end of the document, a triggering member arranged along the length of the table coupled to the pointer for positioning in accordance with the length of the document, means on the frame responsive to the passage of the triggering member for actuating the cutter so that a sheet is severed from the web during the course of exposure of the sheet and having the same length as the original document with formation of a new leading edge on the web, means for reversing the movement of the table incident to passage of the sheet from the exposing station, and means for incrementally advancing the new leading edge into a ready position ahead of the exposing station in preparation for an ensuing cycle.
8. In a photocopy machine the combination comprising a frame having an illuminating station, a table movably mounted on the frame for supporting the original document with the document aligned with a reference edge at the leading end of the table, means including a constantly rotating motor for driving the table forwardly past the illuminating station as well as for reversing the movement for return of the table to a home position, means for transporting a web of sensitized copy paper from a supply roll into an exposing station in synchronism with the forward movement of the table, optical means for projecting the image of the document at the illuminating station upon the photocopy paper at the exposing station, a cutter for receiving the web between the supply roll and the exposing station, said cutter having a rockable blade and a fixed blade extending the width of the web, the rockable blade normally occupying a position on the opposite side of the web from the fixed blade and extending generally parallel to the web and closely spaced with respect to it, the blades being formed for progressive engagement from one end to the other as the rockable blade is rocked through a small angle, means for oscillating the rockable blade through a cycle of movement into and out of shearing engagement with the fixed blade, said oscillating means including a single revolution clutch having a constantly driven input member connected to the motor and an eccentric at the output, the eccentric being so phased as to impart the maximum speed to the rockable blade during the central portion of the cutting stroke, and adjustable meansactuated as a result of displacement of the table from its home position by a predetermined amount for triggering the single revolution clutch so that during the course of exposure a sheet is severed from the web having the same length as the original document.
9. The combination claimed in claim 8 in which an eccentric connection is provided including an eccentric driven by the single revolution clutch and an arm coupled to the blade for engaging the eccentric at a variable radius, the arm and eccentric being so phased that the cffective radius of the arm is maximum during the cutting stroke.
10. In a photocopy machine the combination comprising a frame having an illuminating station, a table movably mounted on the frame for supporting an original document with the document aligned with a reference edge at the leading end of the table, means for driving the table forwardly past the illuminating station as well as for reversing movement for return of the table to a home position, a cutter for cutting a web of sensitized photocopy paper fed from a supply roll, means for feeding the web to the cutter from the supply roll, and exposing station, drive rollers for transporting the web about a freely looped path extending from the cutter to the exposing station in synchronization with the forward movement of the table, optical means for projecting an image of the document at the illuminating station onto the photocopy paper at the exposing station, a rider mounted for longitudinal movement at the edge of the table, said rider having a pointer and switch triggering member, a switch on the frame responsive to the passage of the triggering member during the forward stroke of the table and during the course of exposure for actuating the cutter, means for positioning the carrier so that the pointer is set in a position aligned with the end of the document and so that the triggering member is offset from the switch, the
amount of the offset being equal to the length of the document minus the length of the looped path.
11. The combination as claimed in claim 10 in which the rider positioning means includes a long pitch helical cam extending lengthwise of the table along one side thereof.
12. The combination as claimed in claim ll including a gear train having its output coupled to the helical cam and having a finger wheel at the input, the finger wheel being normally biased out of engagement with the remainder of the gear train, means for normally locking the gear train, and means responsive to application of fingertip pressure for (a) engaging the finger wheel with the gear train and (b) disengaging the locking means to permit rotation of the helical cam.
13. In a photocopy machine the combination comprising a frame having an illuminating station, means for supporting an original document with the document aligned with a reference edge, means for transporting a web of sensitized copy paper from a supply roll into the exposing station, optical means for projecting the image of the document at the illuminating station upon the photocopy paper at the exposing station, a cutter for receiving the web between the supply roll and the exposing station, said cutter having a subframe including a fixed blade extending the width of the web, a yoke member having a axis extending parallel to the fixed blade and mounted in the subframe for rocking movement, a blade on the yoke normally occupying a position on the opposite side of the web. from the fixed blade and extending generally parallel to the web and closely spaced with respect to it, the blade on the yoke being arranged at a shallow angle biased against the fixed blade for progressive engagement of the blades from one end to the other as the yoke is rocked through a small angle,
means for oscillating the rocking blade through a cycle of rocking movement, said oscillating means including a single revolution clutch having a constantly driven input member and an eccentric at the output, and means for triggering the single revolution clutch so that a sheet is severed from the web having the same length as the original document, one of the blades having a smoothly surfaced projection at its initially engaging end flush with its cutting edge and extending toward the other blade for supporting the other blade in cutting relation when the edges are separated from one another and to ensure smooth meeting between the cutting edges as they are rocked into engagement.
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|U.S. Classification||399/387, 355/28, 83/205|