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Publication numberUS3790072 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 5, 1974
Filing dateJun 28, 1971
Priority dateJun 28, 1971
Publication numberUS 3790072 A, US 3790072A, US-A-3790072, US3790072 A, US3790072A
InventorsMoldovan M
Original AssigneeAvm Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Voting machine
US 3790072 A
Images(6)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent. [191 Moldovan, Jr.

[111 3,790,072 [4 1 Feb. 5, 1974 VOTING MACHINE Inventor: Michael Terrance Moldovan, Jr.,

Lakewood, N.Y.

AVM Corporation, Jamestown, N Y

Filed: June 28, 1971 Appl. No.: 157,366

Assignee:

US. Cl. 235/54 R, 235/50 R Int. Cl G07c 13/00 Field of Search; 235/54 R, 54 A, 50 R, 50 A,

' References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 7/1972 Moldovan, Jr. 235/54 R Primary Examiner-Stephen J. Tomsky Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Bean & Bean 57 ABSTRACT An improved mechanical voting machine embodying means facilitating the making of a single selection from a plurality of available ballot choices; such choices being presented as indicia carried on the faces of a plurality of voter operated push button selectors. The machine features an election official operated entrance control; means for preventing the voter from causing the machine to record more than one vote, while requiring that such vote be cast before he leaves the machine; and means for printing the election results on required numbers of print out sheets.

1 Claim, 16 Drawing Figures Pmmmm 51914 3,790,012

SHEET 1 BF 6 INVENTOR. M/CHHEL TEPPHN 65 MOL 00 WW JR.

Q3241 YQEMA ATTOPNEYS PAIENIEB E 51974, I v v 3.7905072 sum 20F 6 I I N VEN TOR. mama-'4 re RRHNCF M04 00 m/v JR Qua +64% ATTORNEYS PAIENIEDFEB 5w 3,790,072

sum 5 0r 6 256 MACHINE CANDIDATE NUMBER TOTALIZER PULLDOWN HERE /CHAEL TE/QPFINC'E NOLDOVfi/V JP.

' @mwqam A TTOPNEY-S 1 vormc MACHINE SUMMARY or THE INVENTION The present invention relates to improvements in mechanically operated voting machines and is primarily directed to improvements having particularutility in voting machines of the type adapted to record only a single selection from a plurality of ballot choices presented to the voter, as required by single vote voting systems favored in many countries, such as for instance France. 7

Generally the voting machine of the present invention is of relatively small size and sufficiently light in weight to permit it to be easily carried by two men for positioning on a conveniently located table or other support, thereby to arrange machine voting instruction panels, ballot display area, and recording handle at a height convenient for voter use.

The ballot display area is comprised, as by way of example, of the forwardly facingsurfaces of selector push buttons, wherein fourteen push buttons are available for carrying candidates names or referendums and the remaining push button is available for registering a non-vote" or blank ballot.

The instruction panels include a first panel, which is illuminated automatically when the election official (bureau president) actuates a remote control freeing the machine for voting and which serves to instruct the voter to push in one of the push buttons in order to in dicate his choice. The act of pushing in'a choice push button extinguishes the first panel and causes a second panel to be illuminated. The second panelinstructs the voter to move the handle into, its full left hand position at which time the second panel is extinguished and a third panel is illuminated to inform the voter that voting is completed. Instantaneously with illumination of the third panel, an additional light, which is visible to the election official and the public comes on and notifies them that the voter has completed his vote. These last two lights will stay on until the machine is released or opened by the election official for use by the next voter, whereupon the first panel is again illuminated. 7

Thus, in use of the machine, a voter performs only two steps, that is, indicating his choice by depressing one of the push buttons and recording his choice by movement of the recording handle from right to left. The fact that the entire frontal area of the push buttons, which bears the candidate indicia, is pushed in and remains in until its associated recording mechanism is actuated by the voter, creates an absolutely'positive identification for the voter as to the choice which he has made. The act of recording the vote also causes the depressed push button to return to its original or prechoice position in order to maintain secrecy of the voters ballot. If the voter wishes to change his mind before recording his choice, he merely pushes in another push button, the act of which causes the first push button to automatically return to its pre-choice position.

Themachine includes a novel construction permitting only one push button to be fully depressed to voting position at any time during the voting cycle and insuring that all push buttons are positively locked in their respective pre-choice" or voting positions until the choice has been recorded. After the choice has been recorded, the choice push button is automatically returned to its pre-choice positionand thereafter all push buttons are once again locked and will stay lo'cked until the election official releases the machine via the remote control for use in a subsequent voting cycle. If a voter fails to push in any of the push buttons, the recording handle is not released and therefore the voter is forced to make a proper selection in order to exit from the machine.

Thus, the machine will fully satisfy voting systems, which require a voter to make one and only one choice from a plurality of ballot selections presented for a given office.

Upon operation of the remote control by the election official, the handle is automatically moved from its left into its right hand position; the machine being designed such that the handle can travel in only one direction at a time in order to prevent an unscrupulous voter from gaining a multiplicity of votes.

The machine additionally features an improved printing mechanism to record counter totals on tally sheets both before opening and after closing of the polls in order to give a permanent record of the number of ballots cast for each candidate, the totals cast for all candidates, the total number of abstentions, the total number of voters and the serial number of the machine.

DRAWINGS The natureand mode of the present invention will now be more fully described in the following detailed l designated as FIG. 4 in FIG. 3;

FIG. 4A is a view similar to FIG. 4, but showing an arrangement of parts wherein the counter is set to record a vote;

FIG. 5 is a sectional view taken generally along line 5-5 in FIG. 3;

FIG. 6 isan enlarged fragmentary view of the area generally designated as FIG. 6 in FIG. 5;

FIG. 6A is a view similar to FIG. 6, but showing parts locked in non-voting position;

FIG. 7 is a sectional view taken generally along line 7-7 in FIG. 3; I

FIG. 8 is an enlarged fragmentary view of the area generally designated as FIG. 8 in FIG. 7;

FIG. 8A is a view similar to FIG. 8, but showing the parts locked in non-voting position;

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary perspective view illustratingthe overall arrangement of parts of the present voting machine; I

FIG. 10 is a sectional view taken 10-10 in FIG. 9; 4

FIG. 11 is a view of the voting record printing pack;

FIG. 12 is a rear elevationalview of the voting machine having parts broken away to show the print pack assembly; and

FIG. 13 is a diagrammatic view' of an electric circuit employed in the present machine.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION Reference is now made particularly to FIGS. 1 and 2,

generally along line wherein the voting machine of the present invention is generally designated as and shown as being of a small size, such as to permit ready manipulation thereof by two men gripping handles 12. It will be understood that machine 10 has a front door, not shown, which is readily removable to expose to voter view, as by way of example, three voting instruction panels 14, and 16; 15 push buttons 18; and-a vote recording handle 20. The rear of machine 10 is provided with doors 22 and 24, and a transversely extending delivery opening or slot 26 for the reasons to be hereinafter described. One or the other of machine casing side walls 28 is formed with apertures to permit observation of a vote completion indicator light'30, a public counter 32 for indicating the total number of votes cast for all candidates, a special protective counter, not shown; and to permit passage therethrough of a motion transmitting linkage, such as push-pull or bowden type cable 40. As will hereinafter be described, cable 40 is employed to connect a suitable push button type operated mechanism 42, with the voting machine, thereby to permit an election official (bureau president) to exercise control of each voting cycle from a point relatively remote from the machine.

As with conventional voting machines, it is preferable to provide a secrecy curtain, not shown, to shield the voter and at least the front of machine 10 from view of the general public and the election official. For purposes of simplicity, the curtain may include a pair of manually operated draw' curtains, which are supported in any suitable manner, such as by a curtain rod, also not shown, removably affixed to the casing of machine 10 by the election official.

To facilitate understanding of the overall mode of operation of the present voting machine, reference is now made particularly to FIG. 9, wherein the several mechanical components of the machine are shown as being over-controlled by the position of vote recording handle 20. Handle is mounted on shaft 44 for pivotal movement transversely of the front of machine 10 between its illustrated left hand non-voting position and its right hand voting" position, not shown; a handle connected weight 46 normally tending to bias handle 20 into its voting position. v

Extending transversely of machine 10, are linkage bars 48 and 50; the former being constrained by pinslot connections 52 with the framework of the machine for horizontal reciprocating movement and the latter being constrained by pin-slot connections 54 of its end mounted side arms 56 and 58 with the framework of the machine for vertical reciprocating movement.

Linkage bars 48 and are interconnected adjacent the front, right hand side of the machine, as viewed in FIG. 9, by a machine framework mounted bell crank 60 and associated pin-slot connections 62. Linkage bars 48 and 50 are also interconnected adjacent the front, left hand side of the machine, as viewed in FIG. 9, by link 64, which is fixed for movement with shaft 44 and connected to linkage bar 50 by pin-slot connection 66; and by link 67, which is fixed for movement with shaft 44 and connected to linkage bar 48 by pin-slot connection 68. With the arrangement illus trated, when handle 20 is moved into its voting position, linkage bar 48 is driven to the right from the position illustrated in FIG. 9, and linkage bar 50 is driven vertically upwardly, so as to effect lifting of side arms 56 and 58.

Associated with linkage bar 48 is a non-vote preventing mechanism 70; an election official controlled latch mechanism 72; and a handle movement direction control mechanism 74.

Mechanism 70 includes a pivotally supported pawl 76, which is normally biased into a lower position for engagement with teeth 78 formed along the upper edge of a bracket attached to linkage bar 48; and a linkage device 80, which serves to movably interconnect pawl 76 with one or more horizontally disposed follower bars 82. Follower bars 82 are in turn mounted for transverse reciprocating movements forwardly and rearwardly of machine 10 in a manner determined by operation of push-buttons 18. When linkage bar 48 is moved to the right upon movement of handle 20 into its voting position, pawl 76 merely rides over teeth 78. Return movement of the handle to its non-voting position is prevented, however, until pawl 16 is lifted from engagement with teeth 78 as a result of the operation of one of push. buttons 18. Thus, mechanism 70 serves to prevent a voter from unintentionally losing his vote, due to failure to follow voting directions.

Latch mechanism 72, includes a pivotally supported latch 84, which is best shown in FIG. 10 as being removably receivable within slot 86 of linkage bar 48, and a motion transmitting assembly 88 for connecting latch 84 with cable 40. Linkage assembly 88 includes a horizontally reciprocating linkage 90, bell crank 92, vertically reciprocating linkage 94, link-arm 96, vertically reciprocating linkage 98, pivotally mounted linkage arm 100, vertically reciprocating linkage 102 and bell crank 104. Thus, when an election official wishes to prepare machine 10 for voting by operating-mechanism 42, bell crank 104 is forced to rotate in the direction indicated by arrow 106 with the result that linkage is forced to reciprocate to the left, as viewed in FIG. 9, and latch 84 forced to pivot from within slot 86. When latch 84 is withdrawn from slot 86, handle 20 is freed to move under the bias of weight 46 into it's voting" position. At the end of the voting cycle, latch 84 and assembly 88 are returned to their initial handle latching positions by engagement of downwardly moving, side arm mounted stop flange 108 with machine side wall mounted pivot arm 110; the latter in turn being arranged tobear in engagement with return pin 112 carried by linkage 94, shown only in FIG. 9.

Mechanism 74 is shown in FIG. 9 as including a pivotally mounted catch arm 120, which is biased by a spring 122 for engagement with teeth 124 formed along the lower edge of linkage bar 48. The arrangement is such that after reciprocation of linkage bar 48 is initiated in either direction, reverse movement is prevented until arm is disengaged from teeth 124; this occurring only at opposite ends of the path of linkage movement, wherein handle 20 is in either of its voting or non-voting positions.

Again referring to FIG. 9, it will be understood that side arms 56 and 58 may be employed to perform various functions. Thus, side arm 56 is shown as being employed to drive a known counter operating mechanism 130, as by way of example a mechanism of the type illustrated in U.S. Pat. No. 3,566,086; and as being provided with vertically spaced flange members 132 and 134 whose purpose will hereinafter be described in connection with FIGS. 5, 6, and 6A. Additionally, side arm 56 may be employed to drive the machine protective counter, not shown.

directs the eyes of the voter thereto. Panels 14-16 areemployed to provide sequential instructions to the voter, and to this end are formed of a translucent material and arranged in front of three panel. illuminating light bulbs 140, 140a and 14011, such bulbs being associated with panels 14-16 and being illuminated upon closing of microswitches 142, 143 and 144, respectively. In that machine is primarily designed to satisfy the requirement of single vote type voting systems favored in France, as well as many other countries, the instructions appearing in panels 14-16 are illustrated in FIG. 1 as being in the French language.

Microswitches 142 and 143, which are normally open, are arranged in association with handle 20, such that they are alternately closed when the handle is in its non-voting and voting positions, respectively. The

other microswitch 144, which is also normally open, is

arranged in association with some part of mechanism 70, such as follower bar 82, and is closeable thereby only when one of push buttons 18 is moved to a depressed or voted position.

The circuit arrangement illustrated in FIG. 13 is such that panel 14 (bulb 140) is illuminated automatically when an election official actuates remote control 42 to position handle 20 in its voting position, wherein. microswitch 143 is closed and microswitches 142 and 144 are open. Panel 14 instructs the voter to push in (depress) one of push buttons 18 in order to cast a ballot of his choice. The act of pushing in a chosen push button effects closing of microswitch 144 with the result that panel 14 (bulb'140) is extinguished and panel 15 (bulb 140a) is illuminated; the latter panel instructing the voter to move handle to the left, as in FIGS. 1 and 9 for the purpose of recording his vote. As soon as this instruction is complied with, microswitches 143 and 144 are again opened and microswitch 142 is closed, whereby panel 15 (bulb 1401. is extinguished and panel 16 (bulb 140b) is illuminated. Panel 16 informs the voter that he has completed his vote and may leave the voting booth. Simultaneously, with the lighting of panel 16, indicator light is energized to indicate to the general public and the election official that the voting cycle has been completed. Panel 16 and indicator light 30 will stay on only until the election official again operates remote control 42 for the purpose of returning handle20 to its full right hand voting position to ready the machine for a subsequent voter at which time panel 14 will again be illuminated. If desired, the voting machine may be equipped with audible signals, not shown, to supplement the use of lights for indicating that a voter has completed a voting operation. Power for energizing the indicator light circuit and/or audible signals may be supplied by commercial or battery sources, as desired. However, it will be understood that the present voting machine is otherwise mechanical and fully able to perform its vote recording function without the use of such indicators.

Again referring to FIG. 1, it will be understood that candidate identification indicia applied to the forwardly facing surfaces of the push buttons 18 comprise the entire ballot display area of voting machine 10; such push buttons being arranged in three horizontally extending rows designated as Rl-R3, and five vertically extending column designated as C1-C5. As will be hereinafter described, push buttons 18 normally reside in their non-voted or pre-choice positions, shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, but may be pushed to a depressed or voted position for the purpose of making a vote selection, wherein a chosen push button remains until handle 20 is returned by a voter to its nonvoting position. This arrangement creates an absolutely positive identification for the voter as to which choice he has made; the act of recording the vote by moving handle 20 to its non-voting" position causing the depressed button to return to its original prechoice position, so as to maintain the voters ballot in secrecy.

Now referring particularly to FIGS. 3 and 7, it will be seen that push buttons 18 comprise the front or operating end portions of identically constructed .vote selector mechanism 150. Each of selector mechanisms additionally includes an operating member 152, which extends rearwardly through an opening 153 formed in machine front plate 154, and a counter actuator arm 156. Coil type compression springs 158, which are arranged concentrically of members 152 intermediate the rear faces of push buttons 18 and machine front plate 154, serve to normally bias the push buttons into their pre-choice positions, illustrated for instance in the case of the right hand push button in FIG. 7. The relative arrangement of members 152 in rows and columns isbest shown in FIGS. 3, 5 and 7.

Each of members 152 is formed from a pair of horizontally disposed upper and lower plates and 161, which are rigidly connected in a spaced relationship by spacer blocks 163 and serve to journal opposite ends of vertically disposed cam rollers 166 and 168 Members 152 are guidingly supported for reciprocating movement by horizontally disposed front and rear guide rollers 170 and 172, respectively, which are received between plates 160 and161; and by a pair of vertically disposed guide rollers 174, which are arranged to engage opposite side edges of plates 160 and 161. Roller 170 is mounted on machine front plate 154, and rollers 172 and 174 are mounted on one of three push button row associated mounting bars 176, which extend horizontally transversely of machine 10 in a vertically spaced relationship. Mounting bars 176 additionally carry pin shafts 178, which serve to support counter actuator arms 156 for horizontal pivotal movement, as determined by the positioning of cam rollers 168 within generally L-shaped counter actuator arm slots 179.

Cam rollers 166 are received one within each of a plurality of cam slots 180, which are formed in one of three push button row associated cam bars 182. Cam bars 182 are vertically interconnected by connector plates 184 and mounted on the framework of machine 10 by pin-slot connections 186 for horizontal reciprocating movement transversely of the machine. One of cam bars 182 pass between plates 160 and 161 of each of members 152 associated with a given row of push buttons. Tension springs 190 are employed to normally bias cam bars 182 towards their full right hand position illustrated in FIG. 7.

Also carried by each of operator members 152 is a pin projection 192, shown only in FIGS. 3 and 9, which is engageable with one of follower bars 82, and a generally L-shaped finger 194, which is arranged to engage a single interlock 196. Interlock 196 is preferably in the form of a single, closed end tube 198, which is substantially completely filled with interlock balls or spheres 200 and formed with a forwardly opening slot 202 dimensioned to receive the rearwardly projecting ends of fingers 194. It will be understood that the cumulative spacing between balls 200 is sufficient to permit only one of fingers 194 to be fullyinserted through slot 202 at any one time, thereby to prevent a voter from simultaneously pushing two or more of push'buttons 18 into their fully depressed or voting positions.

A vertically disposed bank of totalizing counters 210 extends across the rear of machine and comprises a plurality of vertically disposed columns of counters, which are individually designated as 212 and correspond in number to the number of columns of push buttons 18. Each column 212 comprises a plurality of like counter units, which are individually designated as 214 and are disposed in a number of rows corresponding to the number of rows of the push buttons thereby providing one counter unit for each of selector mechanisms 150. Also, two additional counters, one of which is generally designated as 215 in FIG. 3, may be provided in association with the first and last columns of counters for the purpose of recording the total number of ballots cast. These counters, together with counter units 214 and public counter 32 may be reset to zero by a machine custodian before commencement of 'voting.

As best shown in FIGS. 4, 4A and 9, each of counter units 214 includes a counter actuator 216, which is engageable by an associated counter actuator arm 156; a plurality of counterwheels 218, which have indicia arranged to face rearwardly of machine for the purpose of printing a permanent record of votes cast in the manner to be described;'and an actuator pinion 220. If required. four counterwheels may be provided for each of the counter units. As best shown in FIG. 7, each of actuators 216 is mounted for reciprocation between right and left hand idling and counter set or advancing positions, respectively, under the control of its associated counter actuator arm. When an actuator 216 has been moved into its counter set position, it is engaged with its associated actuator pinion 220 and operable to step counterwheels 218 when rotated by an associated yoke 224, this resulting from vertical movement of a yoke carrying ladder-shaped operator 226 of the above mentioned mechanism 130, during return movement of handle to its non-voting position.

As mentioned above, when handle 20 has been released by the election official and has been moved by weight 46 into its voting position, a voter is free to indicate his choice of one of the candidates or referendum comprising the ballot or to cast a non-vote ballot by pushing in an appropriate one of push buttons 18. When a selected push button 18 is depressed, its associate cam roller 166 is forced to move rearwardly within its cam bar slot 180 successively from its prechoice" position, designated as P-l in FIG. 7; pass its "release" position designated as P-Z in FIG. 8; and into its fully depressed or voting position, designated as P-3 in FIG. 7. During this movement, cam bars 182 are initially forced to move progressively towards the left, as cam roller 166 moves between positions P-1 and P-2,

pressed, mechanism 'remains locked to and are thereafter drawn progressively towards the right by springs 190, as cam roller 166 moves between positions P-2 and P-3. When in position P-3, the shape of cam slot 180 serves to prevent return of cam roller 166 by its associated spring 158. If spring 158 is sufficiently strong, it will immediately return its associated push button to its pre-choice" position if the voter does not force same fully into its P-3 position. Simultaneous with the movement of cam roller 166 from position P-1 to a point at or slightly beyond position P-2, cam roller 168 moves rearwardly within the first leg of its associated counter actuator arm slot 179 between positions P-I and P-II without producing movement of the counter actuator arm 156, as indicated in FIG. 8. During subsequent movement of cam roller 166 into its position P-3, however, cam roller 168 is operable to rotate its associated counter actuator arm in a counterclockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 7, thereby to drive counter actuator 216 into its set or counter advancing position. Preferably, at some point in travel of cam roller 166 commencing after about position P-2 and terminating before any significant setting movement of counter actuator 216 has commenced, its associated finger 194 is moved into interlock 196 sufficiently to prevent entry of a finger associated with another push button.

If a voter then wishes to change his ballot choice, he may do so by merely pushing in another push button. By the time this latter push button has been depressed into about position P-2, cam bar 182 has been moved sufficiently to free the originally depressed push button from its position P-3, thereby to permit it to be automatically returned via its P-2 position to its prechoice P-l position by its associated coil-spring 158. Of course, by the time the originally depressed push button reaches its P-2 position, its associated counter actuator arm has returned the originally set counter actuator 216 to its initial position. This arrangement coupled with interlock 196 insures against more than one vote selection being made while handle 20 is in its voting position. i

When a voter is satisfied with his selection, he need merely move handle 20 into its non-voting position in order to record his vote. However, as mentioned above, unless one of thepush buttons has been fully deprevent return movement of the handle.

Immediately upon initiation of movement of handle 20 towards its non-voting position, side arm 56 is lowered sufficiently toposition flange 132 in engagement with the end of one or more of cam bars 182 and- /or connector plate 184, as best shown in FIG. 6, thereby temporarily preventing movement of the cam bars to the left from the position shown in FIG. 7. It will be understood that when cam bars 182 are thus 'arrested from movement, push buttons 18 are also arrested from movement out of either of their respective P-l or P-3 positions.

During an immediately succeeding period of side arm movement, counter operating mechanism is driven by side arm 56 to step the counter unit previously set by a fully depressed voter chosen push button. After flange 134 is lowered into engagement with one leg of a bell crank 232, whose other leg is received within slot 234 of the lowermost cam bar. Rotation of bell crank 232 serves to drive the cam bars from their arrested position, shown in FIG. 7, into their full left hand or locked position, shown in FIGS. 6A and 8A. At the initiation of such movement, cam roller 166 of the chosen push button is freed from its P-3 position to return under the bias of its associated coil spring 158 relatively towards its P-l position. However, due to the sidewise movement of the cam bars into their locked" position, cam roller 166 moves relative to cam slot 180 into a locked P-4 position. As will be apparent, during this short period of time, the non-chosen push buttons are freed for only limited movement relative to their initial pre-choice positions; the inclined cam slot side wall 240 being effective to progressively limit inward movement of such push buttons until all push buttons are finally locked in their P-4 positions upon completion of travel of handle into its non-voting position. This limited movement does not adversely effect machine operation, since the vote has been registered by the time such movement is permitted to occur.

Push buttons 18 will remain locked in their prechoice positions until the election official again operates mechanism 42 to open the voting machine for use by a subsequent voter.

The present machine additionally. incorporates a voting tally or record printing pack, which is generally designated as 250 in FIGS. 2, 3 and 12 and employed to provide a printed .record of the setting of counter wheels 218 of counter units 214 and the counterwheels of additional counters 215, both prior to and subsequent to a vote taking period. Pack 250 includesconsecutively disposed cover sheet 252, which has indicia thereon for indicating the relative arrangement of counter units 214 and additional counters 215; proof sheet 254; and five tally or return sheets 256-260. Sheets 252, 254 and 256-259 are all backed by carbon" or ink surfaces.

To prepare the machine for voting, a machine custodian opens hinged door 22, which normally covers the rear of the counter column compartment and hangs pack 250 upon pins 270, thus mounting the pack in position behind the bank of counters210 and in contact with the exposed peripheral portions of the counterwheels. Before this time, each of counter units 214 and counters 215. has preferably been set to zero. When door 22 is closed, pack 250 is completely enclosed within the machine and inaccessible to unauthorized handling.

In order to print the readings of the counterwheels upon the proof and tally sheets, there is provided a traveling platen, which is generally in the form of an upright bracket designated at 272 in FIGS. 3 and 12. Platen 272 is mounted for horizontal sliding engagement rearwardly of the bank of counters 210 upon a fixed rail 274, which extends transversely of the rear of the machine and comprises an integral portion of the rigid framework thereof. The platen 272 mounts a series of platen rollers 276 upon vertical axle means in such manner that the rollers 276 are in horizontal registry with the exposed peripheral portions of the counterwheels. Rollers 276 are so dimensioned and arranged that when pack 250 is hung upon pins 270 and platen 272 is moved, as from the right side of the pack to the left as viewed in FIG. 12, the rollers will thereupon press the paper pack firmly against the exposed raised numerals of the counterwheels, thereby causing the inked surfaces to print the counterwheel zero" readings upon the fronts of the proof sheet 254 and the tally sheets 256-260. The taking of zero-readings is performed by the election official immediately prior to the voting period. Movements of the platen from one side to another of the machine may be accomplished by any suitable mechanism, such as a cable mechanism 280 driven by a hand crank 281, removably applied by the election official to an operator. shaft 282.

Pins 270 are so supported that whenever the platen is displaced from the right to left, as viewed in FIG. 12, the last portion of travel of the platen to the left causes the pins to be displaced to a lower elevation, thereby lowering the entire record pack relative to its previous elevation during the zero reading printing process. As will be observed by examination of FIG. 11, the proof sheet is dimensioned to extend at its lower end somewhat below the bottom edges of the other sheets of the pack; and the sheets are so dimensioned that when the pack is thus lowered, as explained hereinabove, the bottom edge of the proof sheet only projects out through the delivery opening 26 (FIGS. 2 and 3). Thus, the election official may grasp the lower edge of the proof sheet and pull down upon it in order to effect severing thereof from the rest of the pack along a line of perforations, not shown. The proof sheet is thus pulled free of the machine for inspection purposes by the election official. Upon subsequent return movement of. the platen from left to right at the end of the voting period, the record pack will be disposed at a lower elevation than whenthe zero readings were printed, whereby the voting totals of the counterwheels will be printed on the return sheet at an elevation above the zero readings for ready comparison therewith. If by mistake, one or more of the counterwheels was not initially set to zero, the actual vote may be readily determined by merely subtracting the zero reading from the final recorded reading. Return movement of the platen may be accomplished by election official manipulation of the operatorshaft, as described above. Then, upon final return of the platen to the right hand end of the machine, the return sheet pack will be pushed off the pins 270, and thereby released and permitted to slide by gravity downwardly out through discharge opening 26 for recovery; one sheet being retained by the election official and the remaining sheets being forwarded to other officials, as determined by applicable election laws.

1. A voting machine comprising in combination:

a plurality of vote counter mechanisms corresponding one with each of a plurality of ballot selections from which a voter must choose his vote;

a plurality of selection means associated one with each of said counter mechanisms, said selection means being individually operable by a voter to set an associated counter mechanism for subsequent operation to register his vote;

limiting means for limiting the number of said selector means which may be operated by a voter to set said counter mechanisms;

a handle mechanism including a handle movable by a voter from a first position wherein said selection means may be operated into a second position for operating said set counter mechanism thereby to register his vote;

arresting means for preventing operation of said selection means when said handle is in said second position thereof;

latch means for automatically locking said handle in said second position, said handle mechanism including biasing means tending to automatically move said handle from said second position into said first position upon release of said latch means;

release means under the control of an election official for releasing said latch means to permit movement of said handle from said second position into said first position, whereby to free said selection means for operation by a subsequent voter;

prevention means for preventing movement of said handle from said first position to said second position until operation of one of said selection means by said voter;

voter instruction panels; and

means for successively illuminating said panels one at a time, whereby a first of said panels is illuminated upon movement of said handle into said first position for instructing a voter to cast his ballot by opcrating one of said selection means, a second of said panels is illuminated upon operation of one of said selection means for instructing a voter to register his vote by moving said handle from said firstposition to said second position, and a third of said panels is illuminated upon movement of said handle into said second position for instructing a voter that the voting operation is completed. I l

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4362925 *Sep 3, 1981Dec 7, 1982Ransom F. Shoup & Company, Inc.Voting machine
US5610383 *Apr 26, 1996Mar 11, 1997Chumbley; Gregory R.Device for collecting voting data
US6581824 *Mar 19, 2001Jun 24, 2003Hart Intercivic, Inc.Electronic voting system
US7152792 *Feb 19, 2002Dec 26, 2006Gaston Charles AVoting apparatus and method using personal computers
US7422150Nov 1, 2001Sep 9, 2008Avante International Technology, Inc.Electronic voting apparatus, system and method
US7431209Sep 26, 2002Oct 7, 2008Avante International Technology, Inc.Electronic voting apparatus, system and method
US7461787Mar 20, 2006Dec 9, 2008Avante International Technology, Inc.Electronic voting apparatus, system and method
US7614553Jul 17, 2006Nov 10, 2009Avante International Technology, Inc.Method for reading an optically readable sheet
US7635087Feb 28, 2005Dec 22, 2009Avante International Technology, Inc.Method for processing a machine readable ballot and ballot therefor
US7635088Feb 22, 2007Dec 22, 2009Avante International Technology, Inc.Electronic voting method and system employing a printed machine readable ballot
US7828215May 12, 2006Nov 9, 2010Avante International Technology, Inc.Reader for an optically readable ballot
US7975920Sep 8, 2008Jul 12, 2011Avante International Technology, Inc.Electronic voting method and system employing a machine readable ballot envelope
US7988047Jan 21, 2010Aug 2, 2011Avante International Technology, Inc.Method for decoding an optically readable sheet
US8066184Sep 9, 2008Nov 29, 2011Avante International Technology, Inc.Optically readable marking sheet and reading apparatus and method therefor
US8261985Apr 1, 2010Sep 11, 2012Avante Corporation LimitedManual recount process using digitally imaged ballots
US8261986Oct 15, 2010Sep 11, 2012Kevin Kwong-Tai ChungSystem and method for decoding an optically readable markable sheet and markable sheet therefor
Classifications
U.S. Classification235/54.00R, 235/50.00R
International ClassificationG07C13/00
Cooperative ClassificationG07C13/00
European ClassificationG07C13/00