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Publication numberUS3699631 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 24, 1972
Filing dateApr 26, 1971
Priority dateOct 27, 1969
Also published asDE2048888A1, DE2048888B2, DE2048888C3
Publication numberUS 3699631 A, US 3699631A, US-A-3699631, US3699631 A, US3699631A
InventorsShughart Mervin Leonard
Original AssigneeAmp Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for assembling articles in strip form to workpieces
US 3699631 A
Abstract
Assembling apparatus comprises strip feeding means for feeding a strip of articles along a predetermined path which extends above a supported workpiece. Assembly is carried out by means of a punch which is movable, in two stages, towards the workpiece. The inserting punch moves downwardly, in a first stage, and grasps the leading article of the strip. The carrier strip to which the article is attached, is then moved laterally while the article is supported against movement thereby to shear the leading article from the strip. The punch then moves downwardly through the remainder of its stroke to carry the article towards the workpiece and assemble it thereto. The article may comprise e.g. a terminal pin and the workpiece a printed circuit board.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1 3,699,631 51 Oct. 24, 1972 Shughart 154] APPARATUS FOR ASSEMBLING ARTICLES IN STRIP FORM TO WORKPIECES [72] Inventor: Mervin Leonard Shughart, Carlisle,

[73] Assignee: AMP Incorporated, Harrisburg, Pa.

[22] Filed: April 26, 1971 [21] Appl. No.: 137,384

Related US. Application Data [63] Continuation-in-part of Ser. No. 869,744, Oct.

27, 1969, abandoned.

[ Foreign Application Priority Data Sept. 7, 1970 Great Britain ..42721/70 [52] US. Cl. ..29/203 B [51] Int. Cl. ..H05k 3/30 [58] Field of Search ..29/203 B, 203 DT, 203 D; 227/95 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,814,802 12/1957 Maximoff ..29/203 B 12/1962 Maximoff...... ..29/203 D 3,293,735 12/1966 Lovendusky ..29/203 B 3,346,162 10/1967 De Shong ..227/95 3,377,689 4/1968 Kimmett ..29/203 1-1 Primary Examiner-Thomas H. Eager Attorney-William J. Keating et a1.

[57] ABSTRACT Assembling apparatus comprises strip feeding means for feeding a strip of articles along a predetermined path which extends above a supported workpiece. As-

sembly is carried out by means of a punch which is 1 16 Claims, 16 Drawing Figures PATENTEDHBI24 ma 3.699.631 SHEET 3 0F 8 PATENTEDncI 24 19 2 3,699,631

SHEET u 0F 8 PATEmEnnmMsn 3.699631 sum 5 [IF 8 APPARATUS FOR ASSEMBLING ARTICLES IN STRIP FORM TO WORKPIECES This application is a continuation-in-part of Application Ser. Number 869,744, filed Oct. 27, 1969 now abandoned, For Apparatus v For Inserting Terminal Devices Into Panel Members.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION It is common practice to manufacture certain types of sheet metal articles in the form of a continuous strip of the type comprising a carrier strip with which the articles are integral at periodic intervals. A variety of assembling machines are known for severing such articles from the carrier strip and assembling them to workpieces. For example, in the electrical arts, it is known to manufacture terminals in strip form and to assemble them to printed circuit boards by the use of automatic insertion machines, see US. Pat. Nos. 2,814,802, 3,067,902, 3,293,735 and 3,346,162.

The instant invention is directed to the achievement of an improved assembling apparatus for removing articles from a carrier strip and assembling them to a workpiece. The invention is particularly directed at the achievement of an assembly apparatus which provides a high degree of control over the article and the workpiece and which therefore permits the achievement of precision assembling operations at high speeds. The invention is herein disclosed in one embodiment adapted to the insertion of terminal pins into printed circuit boards and in another embodiment which is adapted to assemble spring members to cylindrical workpieces in the form of control knobs of the type used on electronic equipment. Other uses for the invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art to which it appertains.

Most of the known types of assembling machines which are adapted to remove articles from a carrier strip and assemble them to workpieces have one or more comparative shortcomings which limit their usefulness in one respect or another. For example, many of the known types of terminal inserters are relatively complex and, therefore, expensive to produce. Such machines can be used only where the volume of work performed justifies the high investment required. One known type of machine performs the inserting operation by shearing a terminal from the carrier strip, moving the terminal laterally away from the carrier strip, and finally driving the terminal into the printed circuit board by means of a punch which engages the terminal after the completion of its lateral movement. A comparative shortcoming of this type of machine is that the terminal is not subjected to close control during its movement laterally of the strip and its later movement towards the board. Because of this lack of control, jamming sometimes takes place, particularly with certain types of terminals. Still another known type of terminal inserter has a punch which moves towards the leading terminal of the strip, engages the leading terminal, and drives it into the printed circuit board, severance of the terminal being effected by the punch or by a separate shearing mechanism. This type of inserter is satisfactory in most respects but it can be used A only with terminal strip in which the terminals are offset from the carrier strip because of the fact that the punch must move past the carrier strip.

Assembling apparatus other than terminal insertion apparatus of the type with which the instant invention is concerned also suffer from at least some of the shortcomings discussed above. The instant invention is therefore directed to the achievement of improved assembling apparatus of general utility.

It is accordingly an object of the invention to provide an improved assembling apparatus for assembling articles in strip form to workpieces. A further object is to provide an inserting apparatus in: which close control over the terminal being inserted is maintained throughout the inserting operation. A still further object of the invention is to provide a relatively simple and foolproof inserting apparatus which is capable of achieving high production rates and which is adaptable for use with varying types and sizes of terminals. A further object is to provide an assembling apparatus for assembling circular springs to cylindrical workpieces such as electronic equipment control knobs.

These and other objects of the invention are achieved in a preferred embodiment thereof which is briefly described in the foregoing abstract, which is described in detail in the description which follows, and which is shown in the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a preferred form of apparatus in accordance with the invention.

FIG. 1A is a perspective view of a short section of terminal strip of the type applied. by the apparatus'of FIG. 1. 1

FIG. 2 is a sectional side view of the operating zone of the apparatus of FIG. 1 taken along the lines 2-2 of FIG. 1, this view showing the positions of the parts at the beginning of the operating cycle.

FIG. 3 is a view taken along the lines 33 of FIG. 2.

FIGS. 4, 5, and 6 are views similar to FIG. 2 but showing the position of the parts at successive stages of the operating cycle.

FIG. 7, is a view similar to FIG. 3 but showing the position of the parts at an intermediate stage of the operating cycle.

FIG. 8 is a frontal view of an alternative embodiment of the invention adapted to assemble cylindrical springs to the ends of control knobs.

FIG. 9 is a perspective view showing a short section of spring strip and the manner in which the springs are applied to the control knobs.

FIG. 10 is a sectional view on an. enlarged scale taken along the lines l010 of FIG. 8.

FIGS. 11, 12, and 13 are fragmentary views similar to FIG. 10 but showing the positions of the parts at successive stages of the operating cycle of the apparatus.

FIG. 14 is a view taken along the lines 14-14 of FIG. 13.

FIG. 15 is a view taken along the lines 15-l5 of FIG. 10.

pilot holes 17 which are utilized to feed the strip towards the operating zone of the apparatus as will be described below.

The disclosed form of apparatus comprises a generally C shaped frame member having upper and lower arms 20, 22. A vertical frame plate 24 is secured to the end of the upper arm 20 and forwardly extending flange plates 26, 28 are secured to the ends of this vertical plate. The lower flange plate 28 has a reduced width extension 30 on which the terminal shearing mechanism is mounted and a lateral extension 34 which supports the feed mechanism.

The terminal strip is fed from a suitable reel and guided toward the operating zone in which insertion takes place by means of a strip guide means 32 which comprises an elongated block 36 secured to the upper surface of the plate extension 34 and to which guide piece 34 is secured to define a groove or slot for the carrier strip 16. A top plate 40 is also secured to the surface of the block 36 to protect the upper ends of the terminals as they are guided towards the operating zone.

Feeding of the strip is accomplished bymeans of a reciprocable feed arm 42 which extends downwardly as viewed in FIG. 1 behind the block 36 and which has a laterally extending finger (not specifically shown) which extends through a slot in block 36 and is adapted to engage the pilot holes 17 of the carrier strip. The upper end of the feed arm 42 is pivotally secured to a block 44 on the end of a piston rod 46 of a piston cylinder 48 which is suitably mounted on a lateral extension 50 of the frame plate 24. At the end of each operating cycle, compressed air is supplied to the cylinder 48 to advance the strip a distance equal to the spacing between adjacent terminals thereby to position the leading terminal of the strip at a location directly beneath the insertion punch 52 which is described immediately below.

As shown best in FIG. 2, the insertion punch or insertion rod is generally cylindrical and has a reduced diameter lower end 54 which flares and merges with a uniform diameter section 55. An axial bore is provided in the lower end of the insertion punch, the diameter of this bore being substantially equal to the diameter of the upper portion of the contact pin so that as the punch moves downwardly over the pin, it will telescopically receive the upper end of the pin. In order to hold the pin in the bore during severing and insertion, the lower end of the punch has an axial slot 51 on its side which communicates with bore 56. A bent-wire spring 53 mounted in this slot has an inwardly hooked lower end which engages the pin and holds it in the bore as shown in FIG. 5.

The intermediate uniform diameter portion 55 of the punch merges with an enlarged upper end which is, in turn secured by a threaded coupling to the piston rod 60 of a pneumatic piston-cylinder 62. Piston-cylinder 62 has inlet and outlet ports 64 and is mounted in axial alignment with a second piston cylinder 66 having inlet and outlet ports 67. The two piston cylinders 62, 66 are separated by a common cylinder head 68 and are mounted between forwardly extending flange plates 70,

'72 which are secured to a slide member 74 disposed against surface of the frame plate 24 and contained between suitable guide gibs 76 mounted on the frame plate. The piston rod 78 of the upper piston cylinder 66 projects through the upper flange plate and bears against the underside of the upper flange plate 26 so that when the lower end of the pneumatic piston cylinder 66 is pressurized, the slide plate 74 will be moved downwardly to move the punch from the position of FIG. 2 to the position of FIG. 4. Subsequent downward movement of the punch from the position of FIG. 4 to the position of FIG. 6 is accomplished by pressurizing the upper end of the pneumatic piston cylinder 62. In order to insure positive action of the apparatus, these two piston cylinders are double acting as shown although spring return piston cylinders can be used if desired.

As shown best in FIGS. 2 and 3, the terminal shearing and strip displacing mechanism, generally indicated at 80, is mounted on a reciprocable base plate 82 disposed on the upper surface of the horizontally extending flange plate 30 and guided along its path of reciprocation by suitable guide gibs 83. Reciprocation of the shearing and strip displacing mechanism is effected by a pneumatic piston cylinder 88 mounted on the rearward side of the frame plate 24 and having a piston rod 26 which extends through an oversized opening 90 in the frame plate. The end of this piston rod is secured to the lefthand side of a thrust block 84 fastened by suitable fasteners to the upper surface of the slidable base plate 82.

A first shearing block 92 is secured to the upper surface of the slidable base plate 82 on its righthand end, as viewed in FIG. 2, by means of suitable fasteners 94 and has a shearing edge 93 on its lefthand side which extends parallel to the strip which extends across the shearing and displacing means as shown best in FIG. 3. A central cylindrical opening 96 is provided in the block 92 and an aligned opening 98 is provided in the base plate 82 to permit downward movement of the insertion punch as will be described below.

A second shearing block 100 is slidably mounted on the upper surface of the base plate 82 and has a rightwardly extending lip 104 which defines the second shearing edge 105 for cooperation with the previously identified shearing edge 93. The space between the opposed sides of the blocks 92, 100 definesa passageway 106 through which the carrier strip 16 is fed. It will be noted from FIG. 2 that at the conclusion of the feeding operation, the leading terminal of the strip is disposed immediately below the axial bore 56 in the insertion punch and that the lower cylindrical portion 12 of the leading terminal is disposed against the surface of the lip 104 to support this surface during the shearing operation.

The shearing block 100 is normally disposed against righthand side 102 of the thrust block 84 and has laterally extending arms 103 which project beyond the sides of the thrust block as best shown in FIG. 3. Compression springs 108 are interposed between the lefthand sides of these arms and fixed blocks 109 which are secured to the frame block 24 on each side of the piston rod 86. The stiffness of these springs is such that they are capable of supporting the shearing block 100 against leftward movement while the shearing operation is being carried out, as will be described below, although they will be compressed after shearing to permit leftward movement of both shearing blocks in unison as illustrated in FIGS. 5 and 6.

The printed circuit board or other panel member 6 i may be supported beneath the frame plate 30 in any suitable manner. The disclosed embodiment of the invention includes an anvil 120 having an upper surface 110 which is adapted to support the board. The anvil 120 is hollow as indicated, at 112 and has a conical constriction at its upper end in which a conical plunger 1 16 is mounted. This plunger has a cylindrical upper end portion which normally projects beyond the upper surface of the anvil and which is adapted to extend into the printed circuit board hole 4. The spherical upper end of the plunger is adapted to upset or flare the contact terminal at the time of insertion as will be described below. I

At the beginning of the operating cycle, the parts will be in the positions as shown in FIGS. 1, 2, and 3 with the leading terminal of the strip disposed immediately beneath the insertion punch 52. The operator first positions the printed circuit board 6 on the anvil with the hole 4, into which it is desired to insert the terminal, immediately beneath the punch shown in FIG. 2. By means of a suitable valve control system, the upper piston cylinder 66 is then pressurized to drive the slide 74 downwardly and move the insertion punch 52 from the position of FIG. 2 to the position of FIG. 4. At the end of this portion of the operating cycle, the upper cylindrical portion 8 of the leading terminal pin will extend into the axial bore 56 of the insertion punch and will be held in the bore by the spring 53. After this initial downward movement of the insertion punch, the righthand end of the piston cylinder 88 is pressurized to cause leftward movement of the piston rod 86 from the position of FIG. 2 to the position of FIG. 6 and corresponding leftward movement of the entire shearing and strip displacing means from the position of FIG. 2 to the position of FIG. 6. During such movement, the shear block 92 moves relatively leftwardly toward the shear block 100, the later shear black being held against leftward movement by the relatively stiff springs 108, and the leading terminal is sheared from the strip as indicated in FIG. 5. Upon further leftward movement of the shearing and strip displacing means 80, to the position of FIGS. 6 and 7, the carrier strip is carried leftwardly and flexed slightly and the aligned openings 96, 98 in the shear block 100 and the slide plate 82 are brought into alignment with the opening 122 in the horizontal frame plate 30. The springs 108 are compressed during this interval to permit leftward movement of the shearing block 100. The upper end of the piston cylinder 62 is then pressurized to drive the piston rod downwardly thereby to move the insertion punch downwardly from the position of FIG. 5 to the position of FIG. 6 and to insert the terminal into the printed circuit board. At the time of insertion, the lower end of the terminal will be flared slightly for retention purposes and upon subsequent upward movement of the insertion punch, the terminal will remain in the printed circuit board.

It will be understood that any suitable control system can be provided to supply compressed air to, and ex haust compressed air from, the several cylinders 48, 62, 66, 88 in the proper operational sequence. It is only necessary that the insertion punch 52 move downwardly in two distinct stages with a pause between the first stage movement and the second stage movement during which the terminal is sheared from the carrier strip and the carrier strip is displaced from beneath the insertion punch. It will also be understood that the several motions described above can be carried out by purely mechanical, rather than pneumatic, means if desired.

A salient advantage of the invention is that the leading terminal of the strip, which is to be applied to the printed circuit board, is gripped by the insertion punch while it is still attached to the carrier strip and is held by the punch during severance of the terminal from the strip and subsequent insertion int-o the printed circuit board. By virtue of this fact, a high degree of control is maintained over the terminal and the possibility of malfunction of the apparatus is drastically reduced. It has been found from experience that with certain types of terminals, jamming or other malfunctioning of inserting apparatus results from the fact that the terminals have been moved in such prior art devices laterally prior to insertion and a result of the further fact that the terminals are not held throughout the inserting operation. This advantage results from the fact that the carrier strip is moved laterally away from the original feed path of the terminal strip after severance so that the terminal can be moved rectilinearly from its original position (FIG. 2) to its final position in the printed circuit board.

A further advantage of the disclosed embodiment of the invention is its relative simplicity as compared with any prior art inserting devices. Again, this advantage is believed to stem from the fact the carrier strip is displaced laterally from its original feed path during the inserting operation.

The versatility of the disclosed embodiment of the invention is demonstrated by the fact that it is capable of applying a pin from strip of the type shown in FIG. 1A by rectilinear movement only of the pin towards the printed circuit board. The carrier strip 16 of the terminal strip shown in FIG. 1A defines a plane in which the terminal pins lie; in other words, the terminal pins are not offset from this plane. Notwithstanding this structural feature of the strip, the pins are applied to the printed circuit board by moving them along a straight line path towards the board whereas prior art inserting machines would require lateral movement of the pin being inserted (in order to displace it from the plane of the carrier strip) prior to insertion. The advantage of straight line movement, as explained above, is that the pin is under complete control throughout the inserting operation. The type of strip shown in FIG. 1A thus presents an extremely difficult insertion operation. It follows that an inserting machine in accordance with the invention is capable of inserting terminal members which are manufactured in more easily processed types of strip.

Obvious modifications of the invention, within the scope of the appended claims, will be apparent to those skilled in the art. For example, apparatus in accordance with the invention can be adapted to insert terminals in the form of a double ladder strip, that is, a ladder strip as in the disclosed embodiment. It will also be apparent that with modifications, the terminal strip of the disclosed embodiment could be inverted from the position shown so that the carrier strip would extend above the terminals rather than beneath them. The severed terminal might be held in a manner other than by the inserting punch after severance of the terminal from the strip. A modification of this type would permit the inserting operation to be carried out with a single continuous and uninterrupted stroke of the punch rather than an interrupted stroke as in the disclosed embodiment.

FIGS. 8-15 show an alternative embodiment of the invention which is adapted to assemble split ring type springs 124 to the upper ends of the shanks 130 of control knobs of the type used on radio or television sets. The particular knob shown in FIG. 9 has a relatively long shank and has a conical lower end 131 and the apparatus shown has a knob feeding means which is specifically adapted to feed this type of knob. It will be understood that springs can be assembled to a wide variety of types of knobs and-that alternative feeding means for the knobs would be used for difi'erent types.

The split ring springs 124 are advantageously manufactured of spring steel in the form of a continuous strip with each ring being connected to a continuous carrier strip 126 by a tapered connecting section 128. These connecting sections are fractured when the carrier strip is bent relative to the spring and displaced from the spring as described below. After severance of an individual spring from the carrier strip it is moved downwardly as viewed in FIG. 9 and onto the upper end of the knob shank 130 which is slotted at 132 so that the spring will urge the sidewall sections of the shank inwardly and against a shaft to which the knob is assembled.

The embodiment of FIGS. 8-15 has many of the same components as the previously described embodiment. These common components need not be described in detail and are identified by the same reference numerals as those used in the foregoing description of the embodiment of FIG. 1. Thus the split ring strip is fed laterally from a reel or the like over the upper surface of platform 34 by a feeding means 44, 46 actuated by a piston cylinder 48. The feed path for the strip is defined by a composite block 134, 135 mounted on the upper surface of the platform 34 and having an internal passageway 135 FIG. dimensioned to permit passage of the split ring springs therethrough. As also shown in FIG. 10, a slot 137 is provided on the upper side of this composite block through which the feed finger extends to engage the strip.

The previously described piston rod 60 has a mounting block 138 on its lower end (FIG. 8) and a guide screw 140 threaded into this block extends laterally into a vertical slot 142 in a fixed guide plate 144 to guide the insertion punch along an accurately predetermined path. The inserting punch 146 is secured to block 138 by a pin 147 and an inserting sleeve 148 is slidably mounted on the punch to effect movement of a split ring spring from the lower end of the punch onto a knob as will be described below. To this end, sleeve 148 is adapted to move downwardly relative to the punch 146 during the final portion of the downward stroke of the punch, such downward movement of the sleeve being effected by a lever 150 pivoted intermediate its ends at 152 between ears which depend from the block 138. The righthand end of this lever as viewed in FIGS. 8 and 14 is pivotally connected to the upper end of sleeve 148 by means of a pin 154. This pin extends through an elongated slot 156 in the punch and through an axial recess 158 extending downwardly from theupperend of the punch. A spring 159 is interposed between pin 154 and the lower end of this recess thereby to bias the lever in a counterclockwise direction while permitting relative downward movement of the pin and clockwise movement of the lever with concomitant compression of the spring.

The lefthand end of lever has a depending pin 160 mounted thereon which is adapted to engage the upper surface of the composite feed block 135, 137

when the punch moves downwardly. It will be apparent that after this pin does engage the upper surface of the block, further downward movement of the punch will be accompanied-by downward movement of the inserting sleeve 148 relative to the punch. 4

An upwardly extending recess 162 is provided in the lower end of the inserting punch 146 and a cylindrical pilot or guide 164 is slidably mounted in this recess by a pin 168, the ends of which are supported in the sidewalls of the punch and the intermediate portion of which extends through a slot 166 in the guide l64.'This guide is normally biased downwardly relative to the punch by means of a spring 170 which bears against the upper end of the guide and the inner end of the recess 162.

It should be mentioned at this point that the diameter of the guide or pilot 164 is substantially equal to, and slightly less than, the inside diameter of the upper end of the knob shank 130 so that the beveled lower end of this pilot will enter the hollow interior of the knob shank and support it during the spring assembly operation. The outside diameter of the lower end of the punch 147 is substantially equal to the inside diameter of the springs so that the lower end of the punch can move into the leading spring of the strip as illustrated in FIG. 11. The inside diameter of the sleeve 148 is, of course, substantially equal to the inside diameter of the springs and the sleeve has a wall thickness which is greater than the thickness of the metal stock of the springs so that this sleeve can push an individual spring from the punch and onto a knob shank as will be described below.

An L-shaped slide 172 is secured to the end of the previously identified piston rod 86 and has a circular opening .174 in its horizontally extending arm of a diameter sufficient to permit passage of the punch and sleeve therethrough. The righthand end of this slide has a notch 176 which is adapted to receive the carrier strip 126, the lefthand side 177 of this notch being inclined relative to the plane of the carrier strip to cause bending of the strip when the slide moves rightwardly from the position of FIG. 10 to the position of FIG. 12. An opening 179 is provided in the platform 34 to permit movement of the punch through the platform and towards a knob supported therebelow. It should also be noted that a circular opening 181 is provided in the spring and which extends above the upper surface of the slide 172. When the slide moves rightwardly from the position of FIG. 10 to the position of FIG. 12, this shear slide cooperates with the upper surface of slide 172 to sever the carrier strip from the leading spring as will also be described below.

It is desirable to provide a means for feeding a knob to the operating zone of the apparatus and to this end there is provided a knob feeder 188 composed of an L- shaped block 190 and a rectangular block 192, these blocks being mounted relative to each other such that they define an L-shaped passageway 194, 196. The apparatus is ordinarily mounted on a bench or the like in an inclined attitude so that the passageway 194 inclines downwardly and knobs fed into this passageway will move by gravity to the end thereof. The innermost knob in entrance passageway 194 is moved laterally to a location immediately beneath the insertion punch by a knob pusher 198 mounted on the end of a piston rod 200 of a piston cylinder 202. The stroke of this piston rod is such that the knob being transferred or moved along the passageway 196 will come to rest at a location approximately beneath the insertion punch. After this lateral transfer of the knob, it is held by arms 204, 210 mounted in horizontally extending recesses 208, 216, in the blocks 192, 190. These arms are mounted on pivot pins 205, 212 and their flexed ends are resiliently biased towards each other by suitable torsion springs 206, 214. It is also desirable to support the conical base portion of the knob located at the assembly station and to this end there are provided clamping blocks 220 in the enlarged lower end of the passageway 196 which are resiliently urged by springs 222 against the conical surfaces of the knobs; Ejection of the knob to which a spring has been applied is effected by merely pushing the completed knob from the passageway 196 by the next knob fed through this passageway. Advantageously, two arms 216 are provided although only a single arm 204 is required to stabilize the knob to which aspring is being applied.

To briefly review the operation of the embodiment of FIGS. 8-15, the spring strip is fed by feeding means 46, which is actuated by a suitable control system, to position the leading spring of the strip beneath the insertion punch as shown in FIG. 8. Compressed air is then admitted throughout the port 226 of the upper piston cylinder to drive the piston and the punch downwardly through a portion of its stroke to the position of FIG. 11. When the punch is lowered to this position, the lower end of the punch will enter the leading spring of the strip and the pilot will move partially into the recess 162 after it engages the upper surface of slide 172.

Piston cylinder 88 is then actuated to drive the slide 172 rightwardly from the position of FIG. 11 to the position of FIG. 12. When the parts are in the latter position, the openings 174, 179, and 181 will be in alignment with each other to permit subsequent downward movement of the punch to the position of FIG. 13. Rightward movement of the slide 172 also has the effect of both flexing and bending the portion of the carrier strip to which the leading spring is attached; the strip is bent by virtue of the inclined side 177 of the notch in the slide and the strip is flexed by virtue of the rightward displacement of the strip from the position of FIG. 11 to the position of FIG. 12. The combined effect of the flexure and bending is that the leading spring is severed from the strip and can now be carried downwardly to the knob.

The final portion of the downward stroke of the insertion punch is accomplished by admitting compressed air through the port 228 which causes the piston 230 to move downwardly from the position of FIG. 12 tothe position of FIG. 13%. During this portion of the operating cycle, the pilot 164 enters the upper end of the knob, the pin 160 engages the upper end of the feed block, the lever is swung through a slight clockwise arc and the sleeve 148 is moved downwardly relative to the punch to move the spring onto the upper end of the knob. The parts are then returned to their original positions and the spring strip is advanced in preparation for the next operating cycle.

As with the previous embodiment, suitable controls, either automatic or semi-automatic, can be provided to pressurize the several piston cylinders in the appropriate times in the operating cycle.

Changes in construction will occur to those skilled in the art and various apparently different modifications and embodiments may be made without departing from the scope of the invention. The matter set forth in the foregoing description and, accompanying drawings is offered by way of illustration only.

What is claimed is:

1. An assembling apparatus for assembling articles to workpieces, said articles being in the form of a continuous strip comprising a carrier strip with which said articles are integral at spaced-apart intervals, said apparatus comprising: a

strip feeding means for feeding said strip along a first path, an inserting punch having means for engaging and holding one of said articles, said punch being reciprocable along a second path, said second path extending transversely of said first path,

workpiece supporting means for supporting one of said workpieces in a plane extending transversely of said second path and parallel to said first path, shearing means effective to shear the leading article of said strip from said carrier strip,

. displacing means effective to displace said carrier strip and said inserting punch relative to each other laterally of said first path, and

actuating means for actuating said shearing means and said displacing means, and for actuating said inserting punch whereby during each operating cycle of said apparatus, said leading article is advanced along said first path, said leading article is engaged and held by said punch, said leading article is severed from said strip, said punch and said carrier strip are displaced relative to each other laterally of said first path, and said punch thereafter moves along said first path to said supporting means and assembles said leading article to said workpiece.

2. Assembling apparatus as set forth in claim 1 wherein said carrier strip is displaced laterally with respect to said article and said first path intersects said second path.

3. An inserting apparatus for inserting articles into workpieces, said articles being in the form of a continuous ladder strip, said apparatus comprising:

strip feeding means for feeding said strip along a first path, an inserting punch reciprocable along a second path, said second path intersecting said first path,

workpiece supporting means for supporting one of said workpieces in a plane extending transversely of said second path,

shearing means effective to shear the leading article of said strip from the carrier strip of said ladder strip, carrier strip displacing means effective to displace said carrier strip laterally of said first path, and

actuating means for actuating said shearing means and said displacing means, and for actuating said inserting punch whereby said leading article is moved along said first path towards a workpiece supported on said supporting means and inserted into said workpiece.

4. Apparatus as set forth in claim 3 wherein said articles comprise spring members having circular cross sections, said workpieces being cylindrical and being adapted to concentrically receive said spring members.

5. Apparatus as set forth in claim 4 wherein said workpieces comprise control knobs which are adapted to receive said spring members in circumferential embracing relationship.

6. Apparatus as set forth in claim 3 wherein said articles comprise terminal members, said workpieces comprising panel members.

7. Apparatus as set forth in claim 3 wherein said articles comprise terminal pins and said workpieces comprise printed circuit boards.

8. Apparatus for inserting terminal members into a panel member, said terminal members being in the form of a continuous ladder strip, said apparatus comprising:

strip feeding means for feeding said strip along a first path,

an inserting punch reciprocable along a second path,

said second path intersecting said first path, panel supporting means for supporting said panel in a plane extending transversely of said second path,

shearing means effective to shear the leading terminal of said terminal strip from the carrier strip of said terminal strip, carrier strip displacing means effective to displace said carrier strip laterally of said first path, and

actuating means for moving said inserting punch into engagement with said leading terminal, for actuating said severing means and said displacing means, and for thereafter moving said inserting punch to a panel supported on said supporting means whereby said leading terminal is inserted into said panel.

9. Apparatus as set forth in claim 8 including slide means reciprocable in a direction extending transversely of said second path, said shearing means and said carrier strip displacing means being in said slide means.

10. Apparatus as set forth in claim 8 including means on said inserting punch for resiliently grasping said leading terminal.

11. Apparatus for inserting terminal members into a panel member, said terminal members being in the form of a ladder strip comprising a continuous carrier stri with said terminal members being integral with, an extending laterally from, said carrier strip at panel supporting means for supporting said panel in a plane extending normally of said second predetermined path, shearing and displacing means effective to displace said carrier strip laterally, relative to said second path, with respect to the leading terminal of said strip thereby to shear said leading terminal from said strip and to move said carrier strip away fro said second path, and actuating means for sequentially moving said inserting punch along a portion of said second path towards a panel supported on said supporting means until said inserting punch engages the said leading terminal member of said strip, for thereafter actuating said strip shearing and displacing means to shear said leading terminal from said strip and move portionsof said strip away from said second path, and for thereafter moving said inserting-punch along the remainder of said second path to insert said leading terminal member into said board.

12. Apparatus as set forth in claim 11 wherein said panel supporting means comprises an anvil, said anvil having means for deforming an inserted terminal member to secure said inserted terminal member to said panel.

13. Apparatus as set forth in claim 11 wherein said strip shearing and displacing means comprises slide means movable laterally of said first path.

14. Apparatus as set forth in claim 13 including an opening in said slide means, said second path extending through said opening when said slide means is in its retracted position.

15. Apparatus as set forth in claim 14 wherein said slide means has cooperable shearing blocks mounted thereon, said first path extending between said shearing blocks, said opening extending through one of said shearing blocks.

16. Apparatus as set forth in claim 11 wherein said strip shearing and displacing means comprises a slide means movable laterally of said first path, said slide means having cooperable shearing blocks thereon, said first path extending between said shearing block.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3889337 *May 17, 1974Jun 17, 1975Amp IncLocator for applicators adapted to apply electrical connectors to printed circuit boards
US4211001 *Apr 13, 1978Jul 8, 1980Bunker Ramo CorporationContact loading apparatus
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US4748741 *Mar 31, 1987Jun 7, 1988Northern Telecom LimitedPin insertion apparatus and method of inserting pins
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Classifications
U.S. Classification227/95, 29/773, 29/739
International ClassificationH01R43/20, B23P21/00, H01L21/02, H01L21/50, H05K13/04
Cooperative ClassificationH01R43/205, H05K13/0417
European ClassificationH05K13/04B, H01R43/20B