US 3676257 A
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July 11, 1972 J. E. INGALLS 3,
METHOD OF AND APPARATUS FOR APPLYING LABELS TO ARTICLES OR PACKAGES 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed July 5, 1969 INVEN TOR. JAMES E INGALLS AT TORNEYS y 11, 1972 J. E. INGALLS 3,676,257
METHOD OF AND APPARATUS FOR APPLYING LABELS TO ARTICLES OR PACKAGES Filed July 5, 1969 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR. JAMES E INGALLS Q m ml in n. nwm m-i lllllllllllll HHIHI ATTORNEYS Ill) Illllii July 11, 1972 J. E. INGALLS 3,676,257
METHOD OF AND APPARATUS FOR APPLYING LABELS T0 ARTICLES OR PACKAGES 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed July 5, 1969 ig @lwa INVENTOR.
JAMES E INGALLS ATTORNEYS United States Patent Ofiice 3,676,257. Patented July 11, 1972 3,676,257 METHOD OF AND APPARATUS FOR APPLYING LABELS T ARTICLES OR PACKAGES James E. Ingalls, 325 2nd Ave. S., St. Petersburg, Fla. 33060 Filed July 3, 1969, Ser. No. 838,805 Int. Cl. B65h 25/04, 5/28 US. Cl. 156-351 5 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE There is disclosed a method of applying labels to packages or articles to be labeled in which a silicone coated paper carrier web having a succession of pressure-sensitive adhesive coated labels peelably adhered thereto is intermittently advanced past a label applying zone where the web undergoes an abrupt change of direction and a label is peeled off the web and applied to an article or package to be labeled with the carrier web being conjointly pushed and pulled through said abrupt change of direction while the web is advancing by a three roll means arrangement in which a middle web contacting roll is frictionally driven by contact with the other two rolls. Additionally, there is disclosed apparatus for carrying out such method which includes means operable, responsive to an approaching article or package to cause the middle roll to make contact with the web and the other two rolls to cause advance of the web to effect a labelling operation and means operable, responsive to approaching movement of a next label to cause said middle roll to move out of contact with the other two rolls to effect stoppage of said carrier web.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates broadly to the art of label application. 7
More particularly, this invention relates to an improved method of and apparatus for applying labels to packages.
Still more particularly, this invention relates to a method of applying 0r dispensing pressure-sensitive adhesive coated labels and to an apparatus for carrying out such method.
Further, this invention relates to the application to packages of pressure-sensitive adhesive coated labels which are adhered to a carrier strip or web of paper having a silicone coating thereon which prevents the labels from permanently sticking to the carrier strip or web but will allow the labels to be stripped or peeled from the carrier strip or web during a label applying operation.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Therefore, it is a primary object of this invention to provide a method of applying labels to packages or the like that is reliable in operation, economical to perform and which utilizes apparatus aspects that provide a lowcost label applying head.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a method of applying labels to packages which is package controlled in that successive labels are applied to succes sive packages upon relative passing movement between such packages and the label applying head and in which the packages trip a drive input relation to cause advance of a carrier web and the labels thereon to apply a label to the first package with the advancing movement of the next label interrupting such input drive relation until the next package arrives at the labeling location.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a method of applying labels to packages which comprises effecting relative movement between a label applying head and a package, initiating advance of a carrier web having a succession of peelable labels thereon to a zone of label application, at such zone, changing the direction of movement of the web, peeling a label from the web and applying the same to a package, interrupting the advance of said web in response to approaching movement of the next succeeding label and repeating said initiating and interrupting steps so as to apply labels to additional packages.
It is a still further object of this invention to provide a method of applying labels to packages which includes effecting relative passing movement of packages and a zone of label application, supporting a carrier web having a succession of pressure sensitive adhesive coated labels peelably adhered thereto for movement to and past such zone of label application, in advance of such zone, frictionally pushing said web and labels thereon toward such zone, at said zone abruptly changing the direction of movement of said web to a direction opposite the direction of movement of a package to place a label in contact with a package and peel such label from said web, simultaneous with said pushing, frictionally pulling on said web, and interrupting said pushing and pulling in response to advancing movement of a subsequent label toward such zone.
An additional object of this invention is to provide apparatus for applying labels to packages which includes three roll means, two of said roll means being driven roll means and located on opposite sides of a zone of label application, the third roll means being mounted for movement into and out of contact with said two roll means, supply and take-up reel means and web guide means for a carrier web having a succession of pressure sensitive adhesive coated labels peelably adhered thereto, so arranged that such web passes from the supply reel means between said third roll means and one of said first two roll means to and past said zone of label application in an abrupt change of direction and between said third roll means and the other of said first two roll means to said take-up reel means, and means for intermittently moving said third roll means into and out of contact with said web and both said first two roll means to conjointly push said web and the labels thereon toward said zone and pull said web away from said zone so that a label is peeled from the web by adherence to a package responsive to relative passing movement between a package and such zone of label application as the web changes direction, while said third roll makes such contact and the advance of such web ceasing when said third roll is out of contact and the means operative to eflect such intermittent movement being operable to cause movement of said third roll into such contact responsive to arrival of a package at such zone and to cause movement of said third roll out of contact responsive to approaching movement of a subsequent label toward such zone.
A still further object of this invention is to provide a label applying apparatus for use with a carrier 'web having a succession of pressure sensitive adhesive coated labels peelably adhered thereto which includes three parallel roll means, two of which are spaced in the direction of label application and the third of which is between the first two, means for guiding such web to move between one of the first two and the third toward a zone of label application and between the other of said first two and the third away from such zone of label application and means for intermittently frictionailly driving such third roll means responsive to rotation of said other two roll means to intermittently advance and stop said web to feed successive labels to such zone of label application.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Further and more specific objects and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view illustrating a label applying apparatus in accordance with the invention;
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary end view of the label applying head of the apparatus of FIG. 1 as seen from the rear thereof;
FIG. 3 is a top plan view of such label applying head;
FIG. 4 is a front elevational view thereof;
FIG. 5 is a rear elevational view of such label applying head;
FIG. 6 is an elevational view of such label applying head as seen from below;
FIGS. 7, 8 and 9 are vertical cross-sectional views taken along lines 7-7, 88 and 9-9, respectively, of FIG. 3;
FIG. 10 is a diagrammatic view illustrating the label applying head with the major component parts thereof in position to dispense or apply a label in accordance with the method of this invention;
FIG. 11 is a similar view illustrating the same major component parts in the position assumed when the advance of the carier web is stopped; and
FIG. 12 is a diagrammatic view illustrating a modified version of the method of applying labels in accordance with this invention.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS The invention as illustrated includes certain operative major components that will be described in more detail hereinafter. However, certain groups of these components cooperate to provide, in the specific embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 to 11, a labeling operation which applies successive labels to successive packages in a manner such that as a package to be labeled moves toward and beneath the label applying head R, the oncoming package displaces by pivoting action a trip finger F which trips a clutch G to cause a cam H to rotate sufiiciently to allow a spring biased lever I to lower a third roll means C into contact with two rubber roll means A, B to advance the web W having a series of pressure sensitive adhesive coated labels 1. peelably adhered to a silicone coating applied to web W. The clutch controlled cam shaft only rotates a limited amount, suflicient to cause the lowering of the third roll and then disengages. The web advances, a label peels off same, as the web abruptly changes direction around a dispensing bar D, the peeled off label adhering to the package P and being pressed thereto by roll means A. The advancing movement of the web causes the leading edge of the next label L' to engage a finger or lever supported star wheel I to rotate the same a quarter turn. This action causes another lever K carried by a shaft M that is turned when the point of the fingersupported star wheel contacts the dispensing bar D to swing a further lever N to again trip the clutch G to rotate the cam shaft 0 so that the lever I, controlling the position of the third roll means C, is raised by the cam H to raise the third roll means C out of contact with the two rubber roll means A, B and the carrier web W to cause stoppage of the advance of said web. The clutch controlled camshaft 0 ceasing turning at a position that conditions the lever I to again be lowered upon the next tripping of the clutch in response to the next package engaging and swinging upwardly the trip finger E.
With the aforegoing general method of operation and general structural characteristics in mind, the overall labeling apparatus includes a drive unit Q and the label applying head R. The drive unit contains a motor and speed control mechanism, not shown, and externally mounted control switches and fuses. The motor is belted to a main shaft 1 which serves as a waste web rewind. The label applying head R receives power from the main shaft 1 via a sprocket wheel on the main shaft, not shown, and a chain 3 to a sprocket wheel 4 on a shaft 5 in the head R. The label applying head R includes two side plates 8 and 9. Extending between these side plates, are shafts 5, 6 and 7. Sprocket wheels 10, 11 and 12 are mounted on the respective shafts and a chain 13 is trained over such sprockets. The sprocket wheel 12 is connected to clutch input coupling 18 on shaft 7. Thus when the main shaft 1 rotates, a drive is transmitted via chain 3 to sprocket wheel 4 on shaft 5, and via sprocket wheels 10, 11 and 12 and chain 13 so that shafts 5 and 6 and the clutch input coupling 18 on shaft 7 rotate in unison. Shafts 5 and 6 carry rubber roll means A and B. The roll means B is a single roll while roll means A is comprised of two axially spaced rolls 16 and 17. The gap between these rolls accommodates a package sensing finger F carried by a lever F projecting froma shaped collar means 14, journalled on shaft 7 and urged by a spring 15 in a direction to normally hold finger F in lowered position. The shaft 7 is a combined control and cam shaft. The end of shaft 7 adjacent sprocket wheel 12 includes a clutching mechanism G comprising input coupling 18 and output coupling 19 which, when engaged, transmits drive to shaft 7' to rotate control cam H on the other end of shaft 7.
Mounted between roll means A and B is a third roll means "C. This roll means includes two metal roll sections spaced to provide a central gap 20. The roll means C is carried by arms 22 and 23 that are fastened to a shaft 24. A further arm 25 extends upwardly and forwardly of roll means C and carries a cam follower roller 26. Thus the arms constitute a lever means I. This roller 26 cooperates with cam H whereby responsive to rotation of such cam H, the arms 22, 23 and roll means C moves upwardly so that the roll means is out of engagement with rubber roll means A, B and the carrier web. Spring means 27 normally urge the arms 22, 23 and roll means C downwardly into driving contact with roll means A, B. Therefore in lowered position, the rotation of roll means A, B from the drive input frictionally drives roll means C, see FIG. 10.
Fixed between the side plates 8 and 9 is a stripping or dispensing bar D that includes a lower edge 29 around which passes the silicone coated paper carrier web W having the pressure sensitive labels L peelably adhered thereto. The labels L are stripped off or peeled from the web as the latter passes around edge 29. This action occurs because the web is being pulled upwardly by the cooperation of roll means C and B, while the label is being pushed downwardly by the cooperation of roll means C and A. The label adheres to the package as it passes beneath the zone of label application at lower edge 29uof bar D, the label being pressed onto the package by to A.
Mounted above roll means C is a shaft 30 that carries a label sensing finger means 31 that extends downwards in the space between roll sections 16, 17. The lower end of finger means 31 is bifurcated and supports a square wheel 32. This so-called square wheel is a star wheel shaped to provide four equi-spaced edges or points 33. A spring means 34 urges shaft 30 to a position that normally presses finger means 31 and the star wheel 32 towards dispensing bar 28. The shaft 30 also carries an upwardly extending lever 35 having an offset end that carries a pin 36 that projects into the path of movement of and can press against a depending lever 37 fastened to the adjacent side plate. The lever 37 carries a pin 38 and a spring 39 connected between lever 37 and another lever arm means 40 mounted on the side plate urges the lever 37 to a position in which projecting pin 38 is in the path of movement of pins 41, 42 extending outwards from clutch output coupling 19 at diametrically opposite points thereof. The lever arm means 40 carries another pin 43 that projects into the path of movement of pins 41, 42. The spring 39 normally urges lever arm means 40 to a position such that pin 43 is in the path of movement of pins 41, 42.
The shaped collar 14 that carries package sensing finger F, also supports a swingable cam 45 that makes contact with a pin 46 axially adjustably mounted on lever arm means 40.
The cam H includes diametrically opposite grooves 47 and high points or surfaces 48 so that the follower roller 26 and arm 25 alternately raises and lowers roll means C out of and into contact with rubber roll means A,B and the carrier web W.
The arrangement operates such that after a lead strip of carrier web W is passed through adjustable web guides 50 on screw shaft 21 adjusted by knob 28, down between rolls A and C around bar D, back up and between rolls B and C to the rewind core on shaft 1, the applier head is ready to apply labels L to packages such as P being fed forwardly on conveyor C. The first package engages sensing finger F to lift same and rotate shaped collar means 14. This causes cam 45 to cause lever means 40 to pivot to move pin 43 out of engagement with one of pins 41 and 42 so that the output coupling of the clutch turns to rotate the shaft 7 and cam H so that the follower roller 26 drops into a groove 47 of cam H. The pin 41 or 42 on output coupling A, that had cleared pin 43' when it was moved, is stopped by engagement with pin 38 so that the cam shaft stops. The roll means, thus lowered, makes contact with roll means A, B. The drive thus frictionally imparted to third roll means C, causes the three roll means to conjointly pull the web W through the head R and push the label to the dispenser bar 28. The label L is stripped from the web and applied to the forwardly moving package and pressed in place in passing under rubber roll means A. When the next label passes under star wheel 32, the forward or leading edge of that next label engages one point of the star wheel 32 and causes the same to rotate a quater turn and press against bar D. This turning movement displaces the finger 31 and pivots shaft 30 and lever 37 to a position that the pin 36 carried thereby, moves 'lever 37 and releases pin 38 from engagement behind one of pins 41, 42. Note that only minimal movement of finger 31 is needed to cause the necessary degree of swinging movement of lever 35 to effect swinging of lever arm 37 to effect release of pin 38 out of the path of movement of pins 41, 42. Thus the shaft 7 can again turn to cause cam H to raise third wheel means C so that the web stops feeding, the turning of the cam ceasing when one of the pins 41, 42 again abuts pin 43 on lever 40. At this point, another label is ready for application to the next succeeding package. This sequence is continued as long as packages are being fed under the label applying head to swing up finger F and trip the clutch.
The arrangement is such that it is not limited to cooperation with packages being fed forwards on a conveyor. Thus by placing a panel unit 60 carrying a plurality of freely rotatable rolls 61 under the label applying head and placing a package thereon, the frictional engagement with the rubber rolls A, B will propel the package through the head R and apply the label.
A pivotal mounting of the applier head allows it to be adjusted to different height packages without moving the drive unit Q. Thus a lever means 62 is connected to head R by a pivot, not shown, and also connected by a pivot pin 63 to the drive unit Q. A spring 64 and an abutment, not shown, keep the head R level as it moves up or down in response to varying thicknesses of packages.
The rewind core 65 for the waste web is mounted on shaft 1 by an overrunning coupling 66 which allows shaft 1 to turn relative to the rewind core when there is no back tension on the web. Thus when roll C is out of contact, the rewind core does not turn.
The clutch means 18, 19 is of a conventional nature and is of the one-way camming roller type. Thus in one direction of rotation of the sprocket wheel 12, the clutch element 19 on the cam shaft is not coupled to the clutch element 18 on the input shaft turned by sprocket wheel 12. However, when the sprocket wheel is turned in the other direction, the clutch element 19 is coupled and turns the cam shaft until one of the pins 41, 42 abuts one of the pins 38, 43, whereupon it disengages.
It is also to be pointed out that when clutch element or output coupling 19 turns upon release of pin 38 from engagement with one of pins 41, 42, it rotates through an are sufficient to again position follower roller as in FIG. 9. Thus the roller is at a location such that the short travel of a pin 41, 42 between its point of release by pin 43 and its abutment with pin 38, allows the third roll means C to make contact with the web W and roll means A and B.
Further, the invention contemplates an arrangement in which the dispensing blade is eliminated and the third roll means is a small diameter roll C and is placed beneath the two rubber roll means A, B. The small diameter third roll stays in contact with the two rubber rolls. Thus to effect automatic operation, the rotation of the rubber rolls must be alternately started and stopped by control means, not shown.
In this form illustrated in FIG. 12, the zone of label application is at roll C which is placed beneath rolls A, B.
What is claimed is:
1. Label applying apparatus for use with a carrier web having succession of pressure-sensitive adhesive coated labels peelably adhered thereto for stripping and applying the labels to an article at a zone of label application; said label applying apparatus comprising: three parallel roll means; a fixed bar having a label stripping edge adjacent the zone of application; said bar being spaced between and on a side offset from two of said roll means; the third roll of said roll means being located between said first two roll means and on the side opposite from said fixed bar, said fixed bar and roll means providing means for passing said web around the label stripping edge and between the third roll means and each of said two roll means, means for alternately moving said third roll means into and out of contact with said two roll means and said web to press said web against said two rolls such that in response to a frictional inward drive of said third roll means against said first two said roll means the web is advanced and the labels stripped therefrom at the zone of label application.
2. Label applying apparatus in accordance with claim 1, further comprising means for imparting drive to said roll means, said imparting drive means comprises coupling said first two roll means for simultaneous rotation and means for alternately starting and stopping rotation of said first two roll means.
3. Label applying apparatus as claimed in claim 2 and movable means supporting said third roll means for movement to a first position where it is in contact with said carrier web and said first two roll means, and to a second position where it is out of contact with said first two roll means, said means for imparting drive to said roll means including means coupling said first two roll means for simultaneous rotation, means for rotating said first two roll means and means for intermittently moving said third roll means between said first and second positions.
4. Label applying apparatus as claimed in claim 3 and actuating means for the means for intermittently moving said third roll means to said first and second positions, including means responsive to movement of an article to be labeled to elfect movement of said third roll means to said first position.
5. Label applying apparatus as claimed in claim 4 and said actuating means further including means operative in response to approaching movement of a succeeding label toward said zone of label application to effect movement of said third roll means to said second position.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Marano 156351 Allen et a1. 156361 Schrotz 156-542 X Collons 156-542 X CARL D. QUARFORTH, Primary Examiner R. GAITHER, Assistant Examiner US. Cl. X.R.
Messmer 156-361 10 156-361, 542; 221-73