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Publication numberUS3705475 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 12, 1972
Filing dateAug 24, 1970
Priority dateAug 24, 1970
Publication numberUS 3705475 A, US 3705475A, US-A-3705475, US3705475 A, US3705475A
InventorsRiley Lloyd D
Original AssigneeFilper Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Packaging machine and method
US 3705475 A
Abstract
A machine including conveyor mechanisms for supporting and delivering articles that are preferably substantially round, from a bulk supply of a random arrangement of said articles to a plurality of single files in which the leading articles are held in alignment in a series thereof for discharge, in succession, into a container moving past the articles so aligned, and a release mechanism on said machine actuatable by each container-support for releasing one of said articles into each container as each container and its support moves past one of said series of articles.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Riley 51 Dec. 12, 1972 [54] PACKAGING MACHINE AND METHOD [72] Inventor: Lloyd D. Riley, Danville, Calif.

[73] Assignee: Filper Corporation, San Ramon,

' Calif.

[22] Filed: Aug. 24, 1970 [21] Appl. No.: 66,218

Related U.S. Application Data [63] Continuation-impart of Ser. No. 37,131, May 14,

1970, Pat. No. 3,650,083.

[52] US. Cl .53/35, 53/59 W, 53/240 [51] Int. Cl. ..B65b 5/10 [58] Field of Search...53/2l, 35, 26, 59 W, 168, 237, 53/240, 244, 248, 249, 255; 198/1, 26, 30,

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,507,905 5/1950 Hughes .Q ..53/24OX ..53/240 X Pool et al. ..l98/l [/1953 Carter Primary Examiner-Robert L. Spruill Attorney-Boyken, Mohler, Foster & Schwab [5 7 ABSTRACT A machine including conveyor mechanisms for supporting and delivering articles that are preferably substantially round, from a bulk supply of a random arrangement of said articles to a plurality of single tiles in which the leading articles are held in alignment in a series thereof for discharge, in succession, into a container moving past the articles so aligned, and a release mechanism on said machine actuatable by each container-support for releasing one of said articles into each container as each container and its support moves past one of said series of articles.

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v INVENTOR. r I BYLLOVD 0 My M1 JM ATTORNEYS PACKAGING MACHINE AND METHOD This application is a continuation-in-part of application Ser. No. 37,131 filed May I4, 1970 and now U.S. Pat. No. 3,650,083.

SUMMARY Articles that are substantially round, such as citrus fruits, apples, onions and some shapes of potatoes, and

within the capabilities of the machine, and method.

While the efficiency of the machine is greatest in the handling of articles that are round or substantially round, but limited degrees of oblateness or deforma Involved in the solution of the above problemhas been that of providing a continuous flow of articles to the delivery 'points,.requiring automatically actuatable controls, as well as other controls, for. maintaining a relatively uniform flow or movement of articles from the bulk source to the delivery points, while insuring delivery of the desired number of articlesinto the'continuously moving containers.

One of the objects of the present invention is the provision of a machine and method, that will provide a rapid, accurate, and dependable delivery of articles of the character above described, from a bulk supply to separate discharge points for discharge of an article from each of such discharge points into a container continuously moved past said points, and an added object is the provision of means for varying the delivery to one or more of said discharge'points,as desired, to vary the number of. articles to be discharged into each container.

An added object of the-invention is the provision, in said machine, of a generally horizontally extending, flexible, relatively slack, stationarily held, sheet-like conveyor onto which the articles from the bulk supply are fed along one edge thereof for movement in one direction to the opposite edge and which conveyor is supported between said one edge and said opposite edge on a row of'spaced supporting members extending transversely of said one direction movable in said one direction to provide a row of article-supporting troughs forarticles movable from said one edge to the other edge for delivery of said articles over said opposite edge, whereby the articles will automatically arrange themselves along the width of said conveyor generally in rows in said troughs for further delivery into single tiles in downwardly inclined troughs extending to the lower discharge ends of the latter.

A further object of the invention is the provision of sensitive and dependable control means for varying the rate of movement of the articles to thepoints where they are discharged into the containers.

An additional object is the provision of a packaging -machine having meansfor arranging random articles into columns or successions from which the articles are released successively into plural containers moving by the discharge ends of the successions, the release being effected by a control mechanism actuated by movement of each container therepast, and yet another object is the provision of a clutch-actuated rotatable wheel having plural circumferentially spaced article sockets each movable from a receiving position to a discharge position by means of incremental radial movements effected by said clutch.

A further object of the invention is to provide a novel method of disengaging meshed gears to serve as said clutch.

Other objects and advantages will appear in the description and in the drawings.

DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS FIG. I is a perspective view of a packaging machine showing the feed portions for the articles, butomitting various elements for clarity, which other elements are shown in other views. A portion of aconventional container supporting machine is indicated in broken lines.

FIG. 2 is a simplified top plan view of the machine showing a conventional container or bag supporting machine in relation to the present machine, and showing a driving connection between part of the present machine and the container supporting machine which is at the right-hand end of the present machine.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged side-elevational view, partly in section and partly broken away, showing the arrangement of FIG. 1 including certain structure omitted from the latter.

FIG. 3a is a fragmentary enlargement of a portion of FIG. 3.

FIG. 4 is an enlarged, fragmentary, top plan view of the downwardly inclined channels for supporting plural successions of articles for delivery to the containers on the container supporting machine, part of the latter being shown, and also part of a grid or screen that extends over the channels.

FIG. 5 is an enlarged top plan view of one of the container supports in which two of the actuating spurs or arms are shown in the inoperative position of FIG. 10 in broken lines.

FIG. 6 is an enlarged, fragmentary, vertical, sectional view taken along line 6-6 of FIG. 4 with gear teeth out of mesh.

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary, cross-sectional view similar to that of FIG. 6, but showing the teeth of the gears of FIG. 6 in driving relation with each other.

FIG. 8 is a fragmentary top plan view of the structure FIG. 9 is a fragmentary top plan view similar to that of FIG. 8 showing a gear supporting element of the artiole-releasing mechanism in a position in which the gears are in mesh as seen in FIG. 7.

FIG. 10 is a top plan view of one of the spurs or arms shown on a container support of FIG. 8 separate from the container support and in operating position for actuating an article release mechanism.

FIG. 11 is a view similar to FIG. 10 showing the spur in inoperative position.

FIG. 12 is a fragmentary, part elevational, part sectional view of an adjacent pair of article-releasing ele- FIG. 13 is an enlarged view, broken in length, of a reciprocating portion of one of the inclined article-supporting feed channels seen in elevation in FIG. 3, including the oscillating supports for reciprocating the channels of an adjacent pair.

FIG. 14 is a simplified side-elevational view of the driving arrangement of several of the conveyors in the system; a profile of the machine, apart from said driving arrangement, being indicated in broken lines.

FIG. 15 is an enlarged, elevational view of the variable drive for controlling the delivery of articles to the inclined article-supporting channels according to the load on the carrier that so delivers said articles.

FIG. 16 is a semi-schematic view of the driving arrangement shown in FIG. 15.

FIG. 17 is an enlarged view of the hydraulically actuated control element shown in FIG. 16.

FIG. 18 is a semi-schematic overall view of the driving system with the exception of the drive arrangement shown in FIG. 13 and part of that shown in FIGS. 14, 16.

FIG; 19 is an enlarged, fragmentary, side-elevational view of the adjustable screen or grid indicated in FIG. 3 and supported over the row of article-supporting channels, and

FIG. 19A is a fragmentary view taken along line 19A 19A of FIG. 19.

FIG. 20 is a fragmentary, enlarged, top plan view of the grid that is positioned over the channels 4, showing one of the side frame and end frame members.

FIG. 21 is an enlarged prospective view of one of the elements adapted to be supported at the upper ends of any one or more of the channels for blocking off delivery of articles to one or more of the channels.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION General Outline Referring to FIGS. 1, 2, the system illustrated shows a hopper, generally designated 1, for holding a supply of the articles to be packaged, which articles are removed from the hopper by a conventional elevator conveyor. 2 extending upwardly from within said hopper and are delivered onto the receiving end portion of a generally horizontally disposed carrier or table 3 for movement thereon away from said conveyor for discharge onto the upper ends of a horizontally extending row of downwardly inclined article supporting channels or troughs 4 for forming a succession or single file of said articles in each channel 4.

The articles, where they are indicated in either broken or full lines, are generally designated 5 (FIG. 6), except for the leading or lowermost article in each channel 4 before its release or discharge for movement into a container. Such lower-most article is designated 5'. The trailing article of each succession is the one at the uppermost end of each channel, (FIG. 3).

Along the lower ends of the channels is a row of article releasing devices, generally designated 6 (FIG. 1), and adjacent to said devices 6 is a container conveyor or container supporting means 7, which conveyor, in general, is conventional.

First Bulk Conveyor The elevator conveyor 2 includes transverse flights for carrying the articles upwardly from a bulk mass within the hopper and discharging them onto the end portion of the carrier or table 3 adjacent thereto.

Intermediate Conveyor The carrier or table 3 is one of the conveying means between the hopper and the container supporting machine.

A rigid frame generally designated 8, (FIGS. 1, 3) includes forward and rear sets of legs 9 supporting a pair of rigid side frame members 10 at their upper ends. Only the near side frame member is shown in FIG. 1.

A set of opposed upstanding legs 13 on side frame members 10 (FIG. 1) are equally spaced forwardly of the conveyor 2, adjacent to channels 4, and a rectangular, horizontally disposed frame 14 is pivotally supported at its forward end on the upper ends of the legs 13 by a shaft 15, while the rear end of said frame is pivotally connected by coaxial pivots 16 (FIGS. 1, 3) with the upper ends of depending arms 17 that, in turn, are pivotally connected at 18 with the rear ends of corresponding horizontally extending arms 19.

The words forward, forwardly, rear and rearwardly are used relative to the direction of movement of the articles, which move forwardly" from conveyor 2.

Only the legs 13 and arms 17, 18 and their pivotal connections at the near side of the machine are shown in the drawings, it being understood that they are duplicated at the opposite side.

A rod or shaft 20 (FIGS. 1, 3) is rotatably supported at its ends in corresponding bearings 21 on the rear ends of side frame members 10. The forward ends of arms 19 are secured to the ends of shaft 20. A horizontally extending arm 22 is secured at its rear end to shaft 20 and carries a counterweight 23 on its forward end, which counterweight is adjustable along arm 21 toward and away from shaft 20. A helical spring 24 (FIGS. 1, 3, 16) may connect counterweight 23 with a bracket rigid with the side frame member 10 to stabilize the vertical movement of the carrier 3 under the changing weight of a load.

Carrier frame 14 includes a rear cross member 27 (FIG. 3) extending between and rigid with the rear ends of the sides of said frame and corresponding depending rods 28 adjacent to the ends of cross frame member 27 are rigid at their upper ends with said side frame members. A cross bar 29 extends between the lower ends of rods 28 and is secured thereto.

At the forward end of carrier frame 14, rods 30, similar to rods 28 except that they are vertically adjustable in brackets 31 on frame 14, depend from said brackets and carry a cross bar 29' at their lower ends. Cross bar 29, corresponds to cross rod 29, (FIG. 3a).

A forward cross frame member 27 (FIG. 3a), corresponding to cross frame member 27, is at the forward end of frame 14 adjacent to, but spaced above, cross bar 29'.

Above cross bar 29', and slightly forwardly thereof, and between the levels of crossframe member 27' and bar 29', is a cylindrical bar 32 parallel with bar 29', which cylindrical bar is secured on the lower ends of rods 33, which rods 33 also adjustably depend from brackets 31. Set screws 34, or bolts, releasably hold the rods 30, 33 in vertical adjusted positions.

A flexible sheet-like support 35 (FIG. 3), which may be duck or other suitable material, is secured at one end to the bar 29 and extends upwardly over the frame member 27 and forwardly over the cylindrical bar 32 for securement at its forward end to the cross bar 29'. This sheet 35 is relatively slack between the rear and forward cross frame members 27, 27 and to the cross bar 29'. The level of the cylindrical bar 32 determines the level at which articles moved over cross frame member 27 will be discharged, or leave sheet 35.

The articles 5 to be packaged are discharged from the upper end of conveyor 2 onto the left end of the sheet 35, as viewed in FIG. 3, which end may be called the articlereceiving portion of carrier 3 or sheet 35.

Carried by a sub frame 14' below frame 14, but rigid therewith and part of frame 14. and below the support or sheet '35, is the article moving device, generally designated 36, that effects movement of the articles from the article receiving'portion of sheet 35 to the opposite end of the sheet for discharge of said articles over cross bar 27" onto the upper ends of the channels or troughs 4.

Said article moving device 36 comprises the upper run of a horizontally extending endless row of spaced rollers 37. The rollers of the row extend transversely of the sheet or support 35, and the upper run of rollers extends from the receiving to the-discharge end of said support 35.

' Shafts 38, respectively adjacent the receiving and discharge ends of sheet 35 are journalled for rotation in bearings carried by sub frame 14 that extends below the sheet 35 and sprocket wheels 40 on the ends of said shafts are connected by endless chains 41 providing upper and lower runs extending approximately from end-to-end of the article supporting portion of sheet 35. The rollers 37 are carried at their ends by links of the chains 41.

The upper runs of chain 41 are supported horizon tally on guides 42, secured at their ends to frame elements rigid with and part of frame 14. Said guides support the upper run of rollers 37 in engagement with the underside of the sheet-like support 35 along lines sufficiently spaced apart so that the slack sheet will sag between adjacent pairs of said rollers to provide transversely extending troughs generally designated 43, (FIG. 3).

In referring to the support 35 as a sheet it is to be understood that it may be continuous, as a flexible sheet of duck or belting or formed of slats, but sufficiently flexible for forming the troughs 43.

Upon actuation of the article moving device through a driving connection with a sprocket on shaft 15, as will later be described more in detail, the rollers extending between the upper runs of chains 41 are moved from left to right (FIG. 3) thereby causing the articles 5 on said support 35 to roll toward the right-hand end of the support for discharge thereover. Thus the sheet 35 is held while the troughs 43 move and the articles 5 readily distribute themselves longitudinally of the troughs, being urged for rolling by the rear of trailing side of each trough. I

The tension or degree of slack in sheet 35 may be varied by vertical adjustment of bars that carry the cross bar 29' to which the forward end of the sheet is secured.

The roller 32, being forwardly of the cross bar 29' will support a portion of the sheet 35 in a forwardly and downwardly inclined position to guide the articles after passing over the cross bar 29'. Rods 33 supporting the roller 32 enable adjusting the level at which the articles leave the inclined forward portion of support 35.

Transfer Plate The articles leaving the forwardly and downwardly inclined portion of the sheet or support 35 are deposited onto an elongated, horizontally extending transfer plate 45 (FIGS. 1, 19). Plate 45 is parallel with roller 32 and adjacent to the latter, and is transversely inclined to extend slantingly downwardly and forwardly of the line where the articles leave said inclined portion of sheet 35, (FIG. 3a), and'the upper surface of said plateis provided with low ridges 46 (FIGS. 1, 18 19) extending transversely thereof in positions intermediateadjacent channels4.

Plate (FIG. 19) is adjustably supported at its ends on the upper ends of upstanding legs 47 for adjusting its degree of inclination relative to horizontal, after which it is held in adjusted position by any suitable means actuated by revolvable arm 44.

Said legs 47 (FIG. 19) extend through vertical tubular end portions 48 on a flat-sided bar 49 that extends parallel with plate 45, and set screws 50 secure said legs 47 in vertical adjusted positions.

The flat sides of bar 49 are vertical and its lower edge is supported on rollers 51 for longitudinal reciprocation of the bar, while pairs of side rollers 52 at opposite sides of the bar support the bar and legs 47 upright during said reciprocation (FIG. 19). Said rollers are supported on rigid frame elements generally designated 53.

A leg 54 secured at its .upper end to the flat bar 49 extends downwardly from the latter (FIG. 19) and its lower end is pivotally connected to one end of a connecting rod 55, (FIGS. 18, 19). The other end of said connecting rod is pivotally connected to one end of a crank arm 56 (FIG. 18) that is on one end of a shaft 57. Said shaft is supported for rotation on a part of frame 8 and is power-driven (as will later be explained in detail) for revolving crank arm 56 to effect vibration or reciprocation of transfer plate 45 longitudinally of the latter.

Rollers 58 supported on the forward end of frame 14 adjacent to and over the ends of the plate 45 retain articles on the transfer plate from falling over the ends of the latter.

Channels Supporting Successions of Articles Each article-supporting trough or channel 4 comprises an adjacent pair of elongated intermediate strips 61 of inverted V-shape in cross-sectional contour (FIGS. 1, 12, 13), and includes longitudinal extensions 62, 63, respectively, at the upper and lower ends of each strip 61. I

The end portions of each intermediate strip 61 are slidably seated in the inverted V of extensions 62, 63 for longitudinal reciprocation of strip 61 relative to said extensions (FIG. 13). Said extensions 62, 63 are stationary being rigidly held on horizontal strips 64 that connect side frame members 65 that, in turn, are sup ported on legs 65'. Legs 65' are rigidly supported on part of frame 8.

Alternate, intermediate strips 61 of the row thereof are each yieldably held seated against the under surfaces of the end extensions 62, 63 by a spring 66 (FIG. 13) that, in turn, reacts between an element 67 rigid on each strip 61 and a plate or shoulder 68. Plate 68 is secured on a pin 69 projecting upwardly from tubular, horizontally extending rod 70 that, in turn, is secured on the upper ends of a number of corresponding arms 71, which arms are pivotally secured at their lower ends by pivots 72 to a rigid portion 73 of frame 8. The upper end of each pin 69 slidably extends through an opening in one of the elements 67.

A connecting rod 74 is pivotally connected at one end at 75 to arm 71 adjacent the upper end of the latter and the opposite end is connected to an eccentric 76 (FIG. 18) on a power-driven shaft 77 for reciprocating alternate strips 61 relative to the upper and lower extensions 62, 63.

The strips 61 between the alternate strips above described (FIG. 13) are reciprocated oppositely to said alternate strips and are also supported at their ends against stationary extensions identical to extensions 62, 63. A tubular cross rod 70' identical to rod 70 is supported on arms 81, at least one of which is connected by rod 82 with an eccentric 83 on shaft 77. Eccentric 83 is offset oppositely to eccentric 76.

By this foregoing arrangement, rotation of shaft 77 will cause the strips 61, 61 that form opposite sides of each trough or channel 4 to reciprocate oppositely. Articles in each channel will move downwardly under the influence of gravity and at the same time they will tend to be rotated about axes perpendicular to the plane in which the channels are positioned to insure the articles in each succession against sticking together but being in adjoining relation at the lower discharge end of each channel, irrespective of irregularities in the contours of the articles.

A vertical post 84 (FIG. 13), rigid on the upper end of each rigid upper extension 62 will function to guide the articles into the upper ends of the channels as said articles pass from the vibrating plate 45 into said channels 4.

Overhead Grid Spaced above and substantially parallel with the row of channels 4 formed by strips 61, 61' and their extensions 62, 63, is a grid 85 adjustably supported for tilting relative to horizontal about coaxial pivots 86 (FIG. 19). Pivots 86 are at the upper ends of a pair of opposed arms 87, the pivots being secured to angle strips 88; The grid 85 includes side frame members 89, that are supported on angle strips 88 for adjustment of the grid in one direction or the other longitudinally of the channels or troughs 4. Set screws 90 secure the grid in adjusted position.

FIG. is a fragmentary top plan view of the grid 85 at one corner thereof, which grid is omitted from the other views, except FIGS. 3, 19, to avoid its confusion with other elements.

Briefly, said grid preferably comprises a horizontal row of strips or bars 91 parallel with side frame members 89, which bars are spaced from each other and are secured at their ends to end frame members 92 of frame 85. Cross rods 93 are secured at their ends to side frame members 89 and to the upper sides of bars 91. The grid prevents double-layering of articles 5 fed into the channels 4 and keeps them in single files without injury to the articles, such as oranges and the like.

The height of the grill above the channels 4 is adjustable by means of vertically extending links 94 (FIG. 19). Said links are pivotally connected at their upper ends to arms 87 at points adjacent the upper ends of the latter, while their lower ends are secured in one of several openings 95 in horizontally extending bars 96 that, in turn, are secured at one of their ends on a horizontal cross shaft 97 supported in bearings rigid on frame 8. An arm 98 secured at one end to said shaft provides means for rotating the shaft and thereby elevating the grid in sleeves 99 (FIG. 19) through which arms 87 extend and in which said arms are releasably clamped by screws 100. Said screws extend through sleeves 99 into engagement with arms 87.

Sleeves 99 are pivotally supported on shoulder screws 101 secured on rigid frame members 102 and said sleeves 99 may be rigidly clamped to frame members 65 by nuts 103 on screws 101.

Projections 104 respectively supported on the angle strips 88 that carry the grid 85 are positioned at opposite sides of the upper ends of said angle strips. Screws 105 threadedly extend through said projections into engagement with opposite sides of the upper ends of said angle strips above pivots 86 and enable adjusting the grid in tilted position and to hold it in its adjusted tilted position. The outer ends 106 of said screws 105 may be square for engagement with a crank or the like for rotating said screws.

Article Releasing Devices At the lower end of each channel or trough 4 is an article-releasing device or control mechanism generally designated 6 comprising a wheel 110 (FIGS. 6, l2) journalled for rotation about horizontal countershaft 111 extending laterally of the channel adjacent thereto so as to provide sequentially plural circumferentially spaced pockets defined by adjacent radiating fingers 112-112. In the drawings the fingers 112-112 define four radially outwardly opening pockets, although more or fewer may be provided, and the fingers or spokes 112-112 are in axially spaced pairs with one pair adjacent to the lower end of each channel 4 (FIG. 12).

FIG. 6 shows wheel 110 disposed receiving the leading, lower end-article 5' of a succession from a succession 5 in the channel, which article 5' is cradled by the fingers 112-112 while controlling the gravity flow of the balance of said succession.

Each countershaft 111 is journalled for rotation in the forward ends of a pair of spaced arms 113 of a frame, generally designated 114 (FIG. 6), the rear ends of said arms being pivotally supported at 115 (FIG. 6) on a member 116 rigid on frame 114. A plate 117 supports member 116.

Arms 118 (FIG. 3) at each lateral sides of the machine, carry plate 117 at their forward ends. Upright legs 119 on the rear ends of legs 118 are pivotally connected with side frame members by pivots 120. The forward ends of arms 118 are supported on eccentric members 121 (FIG. 19) secured on the ends of a shaft 122 that, in turn, is rotatable in members'rigid on main frame 8. Handle 123 on one end of shaft 122 enables lowering frame 14 for servicing elements carried thereon. Arm 123 on shaft 122 is slightly past the center of eccentric 121 when in up position, and a spring loaded latch 123 releasably holds it there.

Referring to FIG. 6, the wheel 110 is in its elevated or raised position, said wheel having 'just rotated clockwise past the receiving station wherein the leading article 5', such as an orange, has moved by gravity into a pocket in the wheel at substantially the coincident moment the preceding orange 5"was discharged from the open side of the preceding pocket of the wheel into a container 126 (FIG. 3). Container 126 is on the plural container supporting and actuating device generally designated 7 which device is adapted to support containers with their open mouths or upper'open sides positioned to move along a predetermined path adjacent to thedischarge ends of channels 4 to sequentially receive articles from the wheels 110.

In the position shown in FIG. 6 the orange, or article 5' is intermediate the receiving station and its discharge station. This momentary resting position is effected by means of a cam 128 (FIGS. 6-9) having a saddle 129 (FIG. 6) in which one of plural dogs 130, fixed to and projecting from a side of peripherally toothed gear 131 is supported.

One gear 131 is secured on each countershaft 111 in a position at one side of each wheel 110, and in said intermediate position, the peripheral teeth of gear 131 are held in disengaged relation to a companion gear or pinion 132 therebelow. A shaft 133 spaced below and parallel with the countershafts 111 is supported for rotation on the tilt frame 114. This shaft has a row of the above-mentioned pinions 132 secured thereon, one being positioned below each gear 131, and the shaft is continuously rotated by the same means that drives the container supporting means 7, as will later be described more in detail.

Each cam 128 is secured on a lever arm 134 (FIG. 8) that extends approximately parallel with arms 113 alongside each gear 131. The rear end of each arm 134 is pivotally connected to plate 117 of the tilt frame by a vertical pivot 135 and is yieldably held in the position shown in FIG. 8 by tension spring 136. In this position the projection or dog 130 on gear 131 is supported in saddle 129 on the cam 128 (FIG. 6), hence the teeth on gear 131 and the constantly rotating pinion 132 immediately therebelow are disengaged.

On the forward end of each lever arm 134 is a vertically disposed sleeve 137 (FIG. 6) in which is rotatably supported one vertical leg 138 of a U-shaped member generally designated 139. The forward end portion of arm 134 supporting said sleeve is offset to one side of the length of said arm (FIG. 8) and a collar 140 secured on the upper end of leg 138 has a rearward projection or arm 141 to which the forward end of spring 136 is attached (FIGS. 7, 8).

The other leg 142 of the U-member 139 supports a vertical roller 143 (FIGS. 6, 7) thereon, and spring 136 yieldably holds arm 134 in the position shown in FIG. 8 in which cam 128 supports the gear 131 in elevated position as seen in FIG. 6. Spring 136 also yieldably holds the U-member 139 in the position shown in FIG. 8 in which roller 143 is positioned forwardly of gear 131.

Upon arm clockwise about the axis of pivot 135 against a stop 134', the cam 128 on said arm will be withdrawn from below dog on gear 131 and said gear will drop to the position shown in FIG. 7 in which its teeth will engage the teeth of the constantly rotating pinion 132. The dog 130 that was supported in saddle 129 on cam 128 and against an upstanding stop 144 (FIG. 6) adjacent to said saddle, will be free from said stop for rotation of gear 131 in a clockwise direction by pinion 132 upon said withdrawal of cam 128, and article 5 in the pocket of wheel 110 that is on the same countershaft as the gear 131 will be rotated clockwise to discharge article 5' into a container on the containersupporting means 7.

The means for swinging each arm 134 to move cam 128 thereon from supporting a gear 131 in elevated position, comprises an arm 145 (FIGS. 7-11) pivotally supported on each of the container supports. Each arm 145 has a hub 146 (FIGS. 10,11) on one end, which hub is rotatable on a horizontal pin 147 and is also slidable on said pin longitudinally of the latter.

A coil spring 148 around pin 147 reacts between a collar 149 secured on one end of said pin and a hub 146 to yieldably urge hub 146 against a collar 150, also secured on pin 147. Hub 146 and collar 150 are formed with interengaging projections 151, 152 on their opposed, axially facing ends that function to hold arm 145 projecting rearwardly from each container support to engage each roller 143 that is held in a forward position by action of spring 136.

Upon movement of the container supports past said rollers 143 in the direction of arrow 153 (FIGS. 8, 9) each arm 145 projecting rearwardly from the container support carrying the arm will engage the forwardly projecting roller 143 and swing arm 134 clockwise about pivot to withdraw cam 128 from below dog 130 on wheel 131. Arm will then pass the roller whereupon the cam 128 will quickly move back to its original position in the path of the next dog 130 on gear 131 to again lift the gear 131 out of engagement with pinion 132. The article 5' will be discharged during the period while the gear 131 and pinion 132 were engaged as seen at 5" (FIG. 6).

One or more arms 145 may be mounted on each container supporting means, and to render any of them inoperative, the arm 145 and its hub 146 is moved axially on pin 147 away from collar until projection 151 on hub 146 clears the outer end of projection 152 on collar 150, and the arm 145 is rotated to a retracted position (FIG. 11) in which the projection 151 is at the opposite side of projection 152, and the arm 145 is then released to be held in retracted position by projection 152.

In this retracted position, the arm 145 will not engage any of the rollers 143 to effect the release of an article. In FIG. 5, two of the three arms are shown in retracted positions.

134 being swung horizontally and As best seen in FIGS. 6, 8, 9, a rod 154, parallel with the row of gears 131 and forwardly thereof, has fingers 154 positioned and inclined relative to horizontal to support each article in discharged position from the wheel 110 in moving to the container support.

Container Supporting Means The container supporting means, generally designated 7, and illustrated in FIGS. 1-4 is of a conventional type in which an endless, horizontally disposed row of upwardly opening funnels 155 are respectively connected to links of an endless chain 156 extending around horizontally disposed sprocket wheels 157. The details of the supporting means for the funnels is well known in the art. Wheels 157 are on vertical shafts 158, one of which carries a pulley 159 (FIG. 2)'that is connected by a V-belt 160 with the drive pulley 161 of a variable speed power transmission unit driven by motor 162. The direction of movement of the funnels 155 is counterclockwise as viewed in FIG. 2. A second pulley 163 on the shaft 158 carrying pulley 159 is connected by a V-belt with a pulley 165 on a vertical shaft 166 that is supported on the frame for the container supporting means. Shaft 166 is connected by a flexible shaft 167 (FIGS. 2, 4, 18) with one end of shaft 133 (FIGS. 6, 7) that carries pinions 132.

The mouths or open upper ends of funnels 155 may be rectangular and are supported by chains 156 for moving one of the straight, horizontally extending upper edges 170 (FIG. 4) in a path parallel with the row of article releasing wheels 110.

Arms 145 that actuate the rollers 139 are secured to each funnel 155 along edge 170. In FIG. 4 all of the arms 145 are shown in operative positions, but any or all of the arms on one or more funnels may be moved to the inoperative position (FIG. 11).

In certain instances it may be desirable to stop delivery of articles into one or more of the channels 4, in which case a plate 171 (FIG. 21) secured on one of the corresponding ends of a pair of sections 172 that are of inverted V-shape in cross-sectional contour is supported on the upper extensions 62 of the strips 61 to extend across the open upper end of a channel or trough 4, the said sections 172 fitting over said extensions 62, and part of the plate 171 engaging the upper end edges of said extensions. Obviously the plate 171 may be sufficiently wide to extend over the upper ends of a plurality of said channels, to block off entry of articles to a plurality of said channels, or a plurality of individual units may be used, as desired.

Control System A motor 175 (FIG. drives a variable pitch pulley 176 (FIG. 15) that, in turn, is connected by belt 177 (FIG. 14) with a pulley 178 secured on a transverse shaft 179. A second variable pitch pulley 180 on shaft 179 is connected by a belt 181 (with a pulley 182 (FIG. 15) on a shaft 183 joumalled in bearings on a rigid portion of frame 8. A sprocket wheel 184 (FIG. 14) on shaft 183 is connected with a chain 185 that, in turn, extends over a pair of sprocket wheels 186, 187 respectively on shafts 188, 189 for driving sprocket wheels 186, 187.

A sprocket wheel on shaft 188 is connected by a chain 190 with a sprocket wheel 190 on a shaft 191 that is also carried on a rigid part of frame 8, and a chain 192 connects a second sprocket wheel on shaft 191 corresponding to wheel with a sprocket wheel 193 on shaft 194. Shaft 194 carries the pair of sprocket wheels 195 at the upper end of the endless elevator conveyor 2 for actuating the latter to deliver articles from hopper 1 onto the carrier table 3.

' Intermeshing bevel gears 196 (FIG. 14) respectively on shaft 189, and on a shaft 197, drive a chain 198 that connects sprocket wheels 199 respectively on shaft 197 and on one of the end pulleys of an endless conveyor belt 200 for driving the latter.

Conveyor belt 200 extends horizontally below the article release devices 6 at the forward end of the machine to receive thereon any articles that may be accidentally discharged, or dropped, from the article releasing devices 6 which are above said conveyor.

Articles on conveyor 200 will be discharged onto the lower end of an upwardly inclined endless belt 201 having slats or flights thereon for carrying said articles upwardly and returning them to the hopper 1 at the upper end of conveyor 201. A pulley supporting shaft 202 supports the upper pulley 203 of endless belt 201 above the upper end of hopper 1 and a sprocket wheel on said shaft 202 is connected by a chain 204 with a sprocket wheel 205 on a shaft 206.

A second sprocket wheel on shaft 206, corresponding to sprocket wheel 205, is connected by a chain 207 with a sprocket wheel on shaft 183 that corresponds to sprocket wheel 184 on the same shaft.

By this structure it is seen that motor 175 drives the conveyors 2, 200, 201.

The motor 175 and variable pitch pulley 176 are supported on the outer end of an arm 210 (FIGS. 15, 16) that is supported at its inner end on a horizontal pivot 211 for vertical movement of said motor and pulley, and the outer end of said arm 210 is connected with one end of a chain 212. Chain 212 extends upwardly from the outer end of arm 210 over a sprocket wheel 213 which sprocket wheel is rigid with a sleeve 214 (FIGS. 17-18) that, in turn, is rigid with the housing 216 of a gear pump generally designated 217. Drive gear 218 of said gear pump is keyed to a shaft 219 that rotatably supports sleeve 214 and housing 216, and said gear 218 is keyed onto said shaft 219. Shaft 219 is supported on a rigid part of the frame 8 for rotation.

A spring 208 connects the lower end of chain 212 at a point adjacent to the lower end of arm 210 with a point on rigid frame 8, and the other end of said chain extends over and depends from sprocket wheel 213 and is connected to a weight 209, (FIGS. 15, 16).

Shaft 219 has a sprocket wheel 220 on one end thereof that is connected by a chain 221 with a sprocket wheel 222 (FIG. 18) secured on a shaft 223. Said shaft 223 is driven by a motor 224 (FIG. 18) that is operatively connected by an endless V-belt 225 extending over pulleys 226, 227, the latter being on a shaft extending to gear box 228 from which driven shaft 223 also extends. Thus it is seen that the pump 217 is driven by motor 224.

A sprocket wheel 229 on shaft 223 is connected by a chain 230 with a sprocket wheel 231 on shaft 15 that supports the pivoted end of the article moving device 36, and that also carries sprocket wheels 40 that support the forward ends of the chains 41 carrying the article moving rollers 37.

Also keyed on shaft 223 (FIG. 18) is a bevel gear 233 that is in mesh with a bevel gear 234 secured on shaft 57. Shaft 57 has the crank arm 56 on one end, the outer end of which arm 56 is pivotally connected with one end of the connecting rod 55, which rod is operatively connected with the article transfer plate 45 for vibrating or reciprocatingthe latter, (FIGS. 18, 19) as has hereinbefore been described.

A take-off shaft from the gear box 228 carries a sprocket wheel 236 (FIG. 18) that, in turn, is connected by a chain 237 with a sprocket wheel 238 on shaft 77. Said shaft 77 is operatively connected with strips 61 through eccentrics 76, 83 for reciprocating said strips.

Pulley 226 (FIGS. 3, 18) on motor 224 is a variable pitch motor pulley, the latter beingon a base connected by a screw having a manually rotatable wheel 229 for changing the pitch of pulley 226 for varying the rate of movement of all elements actuated by motor 224.

Referring. toFlG. 17, a reservoir 240 contains the fluid for gear pump 217, a flexible .inlet conduit 241 extending from the reservoir to one side of housing 216 of said pump and a flexible outlet conduit 242 extending from the opposite side of said housing to said reservoir.

A needle valve body 243 that includes a needle valve element 244, is interposed in iconduit 241, the reciprocable movement of said element 244 controlling the volume of flow of fluid through the pump.

Reciprocable movement of the valve element 244 is under the influence of pivotal movement of the frame 14 (FIG. 3) about shaft 15 is the load on the sheet 35 increases and decreases. This is effected through an arm 245 (FIGS. 3, 16) that is rigid with and depends from the forward end'of frame 14 adjacent to shaft 15. The lower end of said arm is provided with a rearwardly extending member 246 on the rear end of which the needle element is supported for generally reciprocable movement as the lower end of said arm swings under variations in the load on sheet 35, and particularly the portion of the load at the receiving end portion of the sheet. This load at said rear end portion of sheet 35 will increase as the load piles up ahead of said rear end portion.

As the load on the sheet 35 increases, the gear housing 216 will rotate counterclockwise as seen in FIG. 16 thereby rotating sprocket wheel 213 thereon counterclockwise, with the result that chain 212 will move to lower the outer end of arm 210 carrying motor 175 and variable pitch pulley 176 automatically decreasing the rate of movement of the elevator conveyor 2 but without decreasing the rate of movement of the article moving rollers 37 of the article moving means 36.

The rate of movement of conveyor 2 may be manually controlled to establish a normal flow of articles onto the sheet 35. This is accomplished by the provision of a pulley 247 (FIG. 15) in engagement with belt 181 that connects the variable pitch pulley 180. Pulley 247 is on one end of a connecting rod 248 the other end of which rod 248 is connected with shaft 250 supported for rotation on frame member 10. A lever arm 251 (FIG. 3) secured on the end of shaft 250 is manually movable to diflerent positions thereby swinging pulley 247 to position belt 181 at different positions on variable pitch pulley 180.

In the event the load on the receiving end of sheet 35 should become lighter than normal, the valve housing 217 will rotate on shaft 219 to result in elevating motor 175 and the variable pitch pulley 176 thereby increasing the rate of movement of elevator conveyor 2.

As seen in FIG. 3, the arms 22 having counterweight 23 therein will swing upwardly as the weight of the articles on sheet 35 increases. Supported on a rigid portion of frame 8 above arm 22 is a switch 251 that is in the electrical circuit with motor 175, which switch is actuated by actuation of switch element 252 thereon by the arm 22 upon a predetermined rise in said arm, thereby stopping the motor 175 and all mechanisms driven thereby, including elevator conveyor 2. Such stoppage will occur only when theload on the sheet 35 should become abnormally heavy. The motor 175 and all mechanisms driven thereby will automatically start after the load has been reduced.

Manner of Operation Upon starting motor 175 (FIG. 14) the elevator conveyor 2, and conveyors 200, 201 will be actuated, and upon actuation of motor 224 (FIGS. 3, 18) the article moving means or device 36, transfer plate 45 and channel strips 61 will be actuated. Actuation of motor 162 of the container supporting and moving machine 7 and the article releasing device 6 will be instituted.

The articles '5 deposited onto sheet 35 will be moved by the action of rollers 37 onto the vibrating or reciprocating transfer plate 45 for movement thereacross into the upper ends of channels 4 of which the opposite sides of each include oppositely reciprocating strips 61.

At the lower endsof said channels the leading or lowermost article 5' of the succession of articles 5 in said channels will be held by a stationary wheel at the lower end of each channel until one of a row of continuously moving container supports passes the wheel, when the wheel will be quickly rotated by the power means moving said supports to release said leading article into the container on said supports.

The article releasing wheels may be actuated to release an article from one or more of a plurality of channels into each container on the supports of the row of supports or means is provided for releasing said articles into certain container supports.

The article moving means being rollers in spaced lines parallel to the upper ends of the row of channels, the articles on sheet 35 will tend to automatically arrange themselves along lines parallel with said upper ends for discharge from the sheet along a line that is along said upper ends. It is important that the plural successions of articles in the channels should be maintained, thus it is important that the supply of articles on the sheet 35 should be adequate. This makes it important that the supply of articles onto the sheet should be adequately controlled.

Inasmuch as the rate of movement of the elevator conveyor 2 may be both manually and automatically controlled, and the rate of movement of the articlemoving means for articles on sheet 35 may be manually controlled, and as separate motors actuate the elevator conveyor and the article-moving means, an accurate, relatively uniform, and dependable flow of articles may be maintained from the hopper l to the discharge points at the lower ends of channels 4. Also the rate of movement of the container supports may be varied.

I claim: 1. The method of packaging discrete, rollable articles of approximately uniform shape and size that comprises the steps of:

a. supporting a layer of said articles for movement in a horizontally-extending path in one direction for discharge of said articles from said path along a fixed, horizontal line disposed normal to said direction of travel, and so moving the articles of said layer,

b. receiving said articles so discharged along said line, and then guiding and supporting said articles so received in files of separate successions extending from said line to spaced points for movement longitudinally of said files under the influence of gravity to separate discharge points to provide a leading article in each succession at each discharge point;

e. supporting a row of containers for movement thereof past said discharge points in positions for receiving articles discharged at said points, and so moving said containers;

d. releasing the said leading article from said succession under the influence of movement of said container past said discharge point whereby each container will receive a plurality of articles with at least one from each succession;

e. rolling said articles of said layer during movement thereof to said fixed line by force continuously applied to said articles along straight, parallel, horizontal spaced lines parallel to said fixed line and continuously moved toward said fixed horizontal line whereby said articles of said layer will arrange themselves along straight, parallel, spaced lines parallel to said fixed line before arriving at said fixed line for simultaneous discharge of the articles in each of said straight, parallel, spaced lines arriving at said fixed line for forming said files.

2. The method of packaging discrete, rollable articles of approximately uniform shape and size including the steps of:

a. feeding said articles from a bulk source of supply onto one end of a relatively slack, horizontally disposed, flexible, stationarily held sheet at said one end only and at the opposite end opposite thereto along parallel end lines,

b. supporting the portion of said sheet between said end lines on supports of an endless row disposed along parallel spaced, intermediate lines in sideby-side relation parallel with said end lines supported for movement in a horizontal plane at a level for sagging of said sheet between adjacent pairs of the supports supporting said sheet along said intermediate lines,

c. simultaneously and continuously moving the supports of said endless row from said one end to said opposite end and while feeding said articles onto said one end whereby said articles on said sheet will form and be positioned in a series of troughs between adjacent pairs of said intermediate lines and will be moved to and discharged over said opposite end,

d. receiving said articles discharged from said opposite end and supporting and guiding them downwardly in adjoining relation in separate, parallel files to discharge points aligned in a horizontally extending row,

e. supporting and moving the containers of an endless row in a path of travel parallel with and adjacent to said row of discharge points in positions to receive articles discharged from said points upon movement of said containers therepast,

f. holding said articles at said discharge points against release from each of said successions for discharge until a container of said moving row is in a position to receive the lower end article of one of said successions and then g. discharging the lower end article into the container that is in a position to receive the same.

3. In the method as defined in claim 2;

h. controlling the rate of feeding articles onto said one end of said sheet by the weight of articles so fed onto and supported on said sheet.

4. The method of packaging discrete, rollable articles of approximately uniform shape and size that comprises the steps of:

a. supporting a layer of said articles for movement in a horizontally extending path in one direction for discharge of said articles from said path along a fixed line disposed normal to said direction of travel, and so moving the articles of said layer;

b. receiving said articles so discharged along said line, and then guiding and supporting said articles so received in separate successions extending from said line to spaced points for movement longitudinally of said files under the influence of gravity to separate discharge points to provide a leading article in each succession at each discharge point;

e. supporting a row of containers for movement thereof past said discharge points in positions for receiving articles discharged at said points, and so moving said containers;

d. releasing the said leading article from said succession under the influence of movement of said container under the influence of movement of said container past said discharge point whereby each container will receive a plurality of articles with at least one from each succession;

e. automatically separating said articles from a bulk supply thereof and conveying and discharging them into said path at a point remote from said fixed line for forming said layer in said path;

f. supporting said layer during movement in said path for vertical movement proportional to changes in the weight of the articles in said path providing downward movement under a predetermined increase in said weight and an upward movement under a predetermined decrease of said weight;

g. automatically regulating the rate of discharge of said articles into said path under the influence of said vertical movement to increase said rate of discharge upon said upward movement and to decrease in said rate of movement upon said downward movement.

5. The method of packaging discrete, rollable articles of approximately uniform shape and size that comprises the steps of:

. supporting a layer of said articles for movement in fixed line disposed normal to said direction of article-releasing means at-the lower ends of said channels for releasing articles, one at a time, into containers to be moved past said lower ends..

1. in a machine as defined in claim 6;

h. said channels comprising adjacent spaced pairs of elongated strips each of inverted V-shape in cross sectional contour whereby the sides of the chantraveLand so moving the articles of said layer; 7 nels ofeach pair provide generally downwardly b. receiving said articles so discharged along said convergent surfaces for supporting an article line, andthen guiding and supporting said articles thereagainst and I i so received in separate successions extending from i. strip-supporting means for supporting said strips said line to spaced points for movement longitufor reciprocable vibrating movement longitudinally of said files under the influence of gravity l0 dinally thereof and to separate discharge points to provide a leading j. means connecting said power means with said article in each succession at each discharge point; strips for vibrating the strips of adjacent pairs supporting a row of containers for movement thereof approximately longitudinally thereof.

.thereof past said discharge'points in positions for 8. In a machine as defined in claim 7; receiving articles discharged atsaid points, and so k. said means supporting said strips for said moving said containers; reciprocable vibrating movement comprising d. releasing the said leading article from said succesupper and lower extensions of. said strip on which sion under the influence of movement of said conthe upper and lower ends of said strips are slidable tainer past said discharge point whereby each conlongitudinally of the latter, and means supporting tainer will receive a plurality of articles with at said strip-supporting means stationary relative to least one from each succession; i said strips. I I I said separate successions being supported from 9. In a machine asdefined in claim 6;

below in filesinclineddownwardly and away from h. the upper surface of said plate being formedwith said fixed line generally in said one direction to upwardly projecting spaced ridges extending transsaid discharge points, whereby the articles in each verselythereacross-for engagement with articles file will be supported for downward movement in a on said plate during said vibration o Said plate, path of travel coincident with eachflfile upon each and release of the leading .article in each file; I i. said plate-supporting mans including rollers carryconstantly applying a twisting force in opposite ing said plate for said vibrating movement relative directions to each article ineach succession about e an axis generally perpendicular to the path of In a machine fi e in c i '6; movement of articles-in each file to facilitate mainfeed means including a horizontally extending taining the articles in each file in adjoining relation ri r f r ai r icles having a discharge end for during downward movement of the articles in each discharge of articles ther fr I including a file under theinfluence of gravity. I downwardly inclined sheet-like support along said 6. in a machine for packaging plural, approximately discharge e d for pporting articles for round articles of similar relatively uniform size includdownward movement of Said Carrier, ing: i. said plate-supporting means including pivot means a. a horizontally extending row of corresponding 40 supporting Said plate at different degrees of channels'inclined relative to vertical each having inclination with the pp r g of a d plate in a an open side facing generally upwardly for supposition closely adjacent to and at approximately porting a single file of said articles in each channel, the level of said sheet-like support for receiving arand the upper and lower terminal ends of said tiCleS from elatterchannels being open and respectively terminating 11. In a machine including a main frame,for numerialong horizontally extending lines, cally packaging plural rollable articles of approximatean elongated plate extending longitudinally of and U the Same h p and Size, c mpri ing:

adjacent to the upper open ends of said channels a. article-supporting means for supporting said artitilted transversely of its length generally in the cles in plural successions for movement to same direction as the inclination of said channels separate di charge points providing a leading end to provide an upper article-receiving surface, article in each succession adjacent said discharge plate-supporting means for supporting said plate in point for discharge therefrom and a trailing end ara position for receiving said objects on its said ticle at the pp end Ofeach Succession; upper surface for rolling thereacross into said open bfeed means for eeding articles from a supply to upper ends of said channels, the trailing ends of said successions for maintainfeed-means above said plate for feeding said artiing a supply of articles in each uc i obs in generally random arrangement onto'said c. container-supporting means for supporting and plate, moving plural containers in a row in one direction power-actuated means connected with said plate longitudinally of said row past said discharge for vibrating it longitudinally thereof to facilitate points in article-receiving positions for receiving a the rolling of articles thereon transversely thereof, leading end article in each container for each of guide means adjacent to the upper ends of said said successions; I I

channels for guiding the articles on said plate into d. article-releasing means actuated by movement of the upper open ends of said channels and each container-supporting means past each of saiddischarge points, for movement, for releasing the leading end article of each succession of articles for discharge into each container during movement of said containers therepast, and for moving and holding its companion succession in a leading position for release into the next container in said row upon actuation thereof;

1. valve means in said conduit responsive to said upward and downward movement of said portion of said table for increasing said resistance to flow of said fluid in said conduit upon downward movement of said portion and for relieving said resistance to said flow upon said upward movement of said portion whereby movement of said articlesaid feed means including a frame having opposite 5 moving means will be regulated for delivering artiends and a carrier for articles carried thereby excles to said article-supporting means at'a relatively tending from one end of said frame to the opposite uniform rate. end thereof, said carrier having an article-receiv- 14. In a machine as defined in claim 11: ing portion adjacent to said one end of said frame; k. means for varying the rate of movement of said ararticle-moving means engaging said carrier for ticle moving means independently of said speedmoving articles thereon from said one end to said control means. opposite end for discharge from said opposite end; 15. In a machine including a main frame, for numerig. actuating means connected with said article-movcally packaging plural rollable articles of approximateing means for so moving said articles on said carril ly the same shape and size, comprising: er to said opposite end; a. article-supporting means for supporting said artih. frame-supporting means for supporting said carricles in plural successions for movement to er in a position with said opposite end thereof over separate discharge points providing a leading end said article-supporting means for discharge of artiarticle in each succession adjacent said discharge cles from said carrier to said article-supporting point for discharge therefrom and a trailing end armeans for so maintaining said plural succession of ticle at the opposite end of each succession; articles on said article-supporting means, and for b. feed means for feeding articles from a supply to supporting said frame and carrier for automatic the trailing ends of said successions for maintainupward and downward movement thereof about ing asupply f arti l s n a su ssi n; an axis along said opposite end of said carrier c ntainer-supp rting means for supporting and under the influence of change in weight of articl moving plural containers in a row in one direction disposed on said receiving portion of said carrier; longitudinally of said row past said discharge i. continuously moving conveyor means for conductpoints in article-receiving positions for receiving a ing articles from a bulk supply thereof to said artileading end article in each container for each of cle-receiving portion of said carrier and for d SUCCeSSiOIlS; discharging said articles on said portion, article-releasing means actuated by movement of j. automatically actuatable speed-control means each container-supporting means past each of said operatively connecting said conveyor means with discharge points, for movement, for releasing the said carrier actuated by downward movement of leading end article of each succession of articles said article-receiving portion under the influence for discharge into each container during moveof the weight of articles therein for decreasing the ment of said containers therepast, and for moving rate of movement of said conveyor means and acand holding its companion succession in a leading tuated by upward movement of said article-receivposition for release into the next container in said ing portion upon a reduction in the weight of arti- 4O row upon actuation the cles on said portion for increasing the rat of said feed means including a horizontally disposed, movement of said conveyor means to maintain a flexi le, Sheet and a rigid frame supporting said relatively uniform load on said carrier. sheet slack between two opposite edges of the 12. In a machine as defined in claim 11: latter with one of said edges along and above said it. manually actuatable speed control means for adarticle-supporting means for delivery of articles justing the rate of movement of said conveyor deposited on the portion of said sheet adjacent to means under a predetennined load on said carrier the edge opposite to said one of said edges onto independently of said automatically actuatable said article supporting means upon movement of speed control means. said articles from said portion to and over said one 13. In a machine as defined in claim 11: of said edges for thereby providing and maintaink. said speed-control means including driving means ing said plural successions upon discharge of leadhaving a variable speed pulley therein for driving ing articles therefrom; said conveyor means at different speeds, and an f. article-moving means below said sheet supporting endless conduit for fluid including a gear pump the latter along at least one line of engagement having a housing provided with an inlet and outlet therewith parallel with said one edge in a position for circulation of fluid through said housing and for sagging of said sheet-like support at the side of conduit in one direction upon driving one of the said line facing said one edge to provide a trough gears in said housing and a power-actuated drive at said one side for articles delivered onto said porshaft connected with one of said gears for driving tion, and actuating means connected with said artithe latter, said housing being supported for oscillaole-moving means for moving the latter in a tory movement about said drive shaft under the indirection from said edge opposite to said one edge fluence of variations in the resistance to flow of of said sheet for moving articles in said trough to fluid in said conduit during actuation of said drive and over said one edge for falling onto said articleshaft; and supporting means;

said article-supporting means comprising a horizontally extending row of channels inclined relative to vertical having their upper ends ad-

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Classifications
U.S. Classification53/475, 53/501, 53/240, 53/502
International ClassificationB65B35/00, B65B35/04, B65B5/10
Cooperative ClassificationB65B35/04, B65B5/101
European ClassificationB65B5/10B, B65B35/04
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Oct 23, 1987ASAssignment
Owner name: FILPER CORPORATION, 475 EDISON WAY, RENO, NEVADA
Free format text: RELEASED BY SECURED PARTY;ASSIGNOR:CHEMICAL BANK, A NY BANKING CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004800/0988
Effective date: 19811109
Owner name: FILPER CORPORATION, 475 EDISON WAY, RENO,,NEVADA
Free format text: RELEASED BY SECURED PARTY;ASSIGNOR:CHEMICAL BANK, A NY BANKING CORP.;REEL/FRAME:4800/988
Owner name: FILPER CORPORATION, 475 EDISON WAY, RENO,, NEVADA
Nov 19, 1981ASAssignment
Owner name: CHEMICAL BANK, A NEW YORK BANKING CORP.
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:FILPER CORPORATION, A CORP. OF CA;REEL/FRAME:003931/0257
Effective date: 19811109
Owner name: CHEMICAL BANK, A NEW YORK BANKING CORP., NEW YORK