US 3791554 A
A vending machine for releasing a single article at a time by the deposition in the machine of a coin or coins and the operation of a selecting button is disclosed. A plurality of magazines for holding and releasing articles to be delivered are mounted on a slant in the interior of a housing cabinet. The magazines are positioned in a side-by-side, vertically spaced relationship and support rows of hangers carrying articles to be vended. The hangers together with the articles they carry are gravitationally discharged upon the actuation of a hanger releasing means.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United StateS'Patent [1 1 Nagatani et a1.
[451 Feb. 12, 1974 VENDING MACHINE WITH HANGER CARRIERS Inventors: Norimichi Nagatani; Toyohide Imamura, both of Tokyo, Japan Kokusai Keiso (30., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan Nov. 12, 1971 Assignee:
Appl. No.: 198,173
Foreign Application Priority Data Jan. 22, 1971 Japan 46/1609 US. Cl....' .1 221/289, 221/130 Int. Cl... G071 11/16 -Field of Search 221/289, 130, 28, 29, 69
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS H1958 Staclthouse.....l ..221/69 11 1912 -Melchert..- ..221/13o Passavanti 221/289 Primary ExaminerStanley H. Tollberg Assistant Examiner-H. Grant Skraggs, Jr.
Attorney, Agent, or FirmOblon, Fisher, Spivak, Mc- Clelland & Maier I  ABSTRACT A vending machine for releasing a single article at a time by the deposition in the machine of a coin or coins and the operation of a selecting button is disclosed. A plurality of magazines for holding and releasing articles to be delivered are mounted on a slant in the interior of a housing cabinet. The magazines'are positioned in a side-by-side, vertically spaced relationship and support rows of hangers carrying articles to be vended. The hangers together with the articles-they carry are gravitationally discharged upon the actuation of a hanger releasingmeans.
2 Claims, 14 Drawing Figures Peterson 221/289 PATENTEDFEBIZIW 3,791,554
' sum 1 or 4 IN VENTORS TOYOHIDE IMAMURA NORIMICHI NAGATAM BY 3 03M ATTORNEYS PATENTED FEB I 2 I974 SHEEI 3 (IF 4 PATENTEB FEB I 2 I974 FIG.5B F7656 VENDING MACHINE WITH HANGER CARRIERS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field Of The Invention This invention relates to a vending mechanism or machine, and more particularly to a vending machine in which a plurality of vendible articles are supported within a housing cabinet on hangers, and a single article supported by a hanger is released at one time by the deposition in the machine of a sum in coins equalling the purchase price of the article, and by the operation of a selecting button.
2. Description Of The Prior Art In conventional vending machines, articles to be vended may be stored in a stacked relationship, and dispensed by pushing the bottom article in the stack with a pusher member which is actuated upon the deposition of a proper coin. It is also conventional in vending machines that a row of articles to be vended is stored in a series of transversely or horizontally spaced, vertically extending, sloping trackways or storage columns mounted within the machine cabinet. The articles in each row are prevented from moving forward by a restraining means. When the restraining means is released to deliver the product to a customer, the leading article in the row rolls off the sloping trackway, advancing by gravity, and falls into a common delivery chute leadingto the delivery station.
The stacking type vending machine as described above includes articles stacked in the vertical direction within the cabinet, and a pusher member, which may be actuated by a solenoid or the like, engaging the rear edge of the bottom article in the stack to push the same outwardly to an opening through which the articles are successively dispensed. Vending machines of this type have been used to deliver articles, such as packs of cigarettes, which are relatively thick, and have a plane stacking surface.
On the other hand, vending machines in which the articles are dispensed by sliding or rolling on slanted trackways, have generally been used to deliver rollable articles, such as canned or bottled goods. In general, 1
these machines include a plurality of vertically oriented sinuous or serpentine tracks to guide rows of cans or Other machines of this type are provided with a plurality of platforms or shelves which are vertically spaced in the cabinet, and inclined toward a delivery chute leading to a discharge station. Release mechanisms for removing the restraining means from the leading can or the like, while at the same time preventing the remainder of the row of cans from rolling forward are also provided with the machines of this type.
The conventional restraining means used in these types of the vending machines generally comprises a rotor incorporating lock and release means, whereby the rotor is periodically unlatched and released from a locked condition under the control of a solenoid provided with a solenoid switch and a limit switch. It has also been proposed that the platform on which the leading article is rested may be tiltable by means of a solenoid-actuated slide in which a solenoid withdraws the slide to tilt the platform so that the leading can is lowered, and falls into a delivery chute.
Vending machines incorporating the restraining means described above have been somewhat satisfac-' tory, especially for dispensing canned goods, bottled beverages, or articles packed in relatively solid boxes.
However, vending machines of these types are not practical for dispensing unrollable articles, or articles which could not be confined within a storage magazine and ejected by a piston or plunger, such as socks, stocklings, garments and the like, for example.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Accordingly, one object of the present invention is to provide a new vending machine or mechanism which is of very simple structure, operation and installation, and insures the reliable delivery of an article from a selected row of a storage magazine upon presentation to,
the coin changer of proper coinage.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a vending machine which is able to be used to automatically dispense various types of articles such as books, magazines, socks, stockings, post cards, garments, candies, foods, records, toys, etc., and does not have any limitation as to the size or shape of the articles to be vended.
A further object of the present invention is to provide a vending machine using hangers as a means for holding and releasing vendible articles. According to the present invention, packaged materials or any type of product can be automatically'vended if the vendible article or packaged material is provided with a hanger or a hole into which a hook of the hanger can be inserted to hold the article in a storage magazine, and the quality of the article will not be damaged by the hanging.
Still another object of the present invention is to provide a vending machine which is able to store many atticles within a cabinet and to require a minimum of electric power to operate the machine, as compared with conventional vending machines of equivalent size and capacity.
Briefly, the foregoing and other objects are attained in accordance with the present invention by providing a plurality of hanger storage magazines vertically spaced and mounted in side-by-side relationship in a housing cabinet. The hanger storage magazines are structured so as to be inclined within the cabinet and to confine a row of hangers suspending the articles to be vended. These hangers are slidable or rollable, and when the hanger storage magazine is actuated to release an article in response to the. deposition in the machine of a sum in coins and the operation of a selecting button by the customer, only a single leading hanger in the row together withv the article rolls or slides from the storage magazine and is delivered to the customer through a delivery chute. The hanger storage magazine members which extend between the tractor body 12 and the hitch parts 28 and 30.
Specifically, referring additionally to FIGS. 2-5, the hitch structure includes a pair of lower, laterally spaced draft links 32 respectively including a pair of draft hooks 34 at their rear ends, the hooks 34 including upwardly opening jaws 36 in which are received the lower hitch parts 30 of the plow mast. The draft links 32 have their forward ends connected, as at ball-and-socket connectors 38, to a pair of clevises 40 extending rearwardly from the opposite legs of an A-frame 42 secured to the underside of the tractor body 12 by means to be described presently. Thus, the draft links 32 may be swung vertically about the connectors 38 and for the purpose there is provided a pair of lift links 44 respectively having one of their ends connected intermediate the ends of the draft links and having the other of their ends respectively connected to a pair of crank arms, only one being shown at 46, the crank arms 46 being integral with the opposite lateral ends of a transverse rockshaft 48 rotatably mounted in the body 12 and selectively rotatable by a one-way hydraulic actuator or rockshaft cylinder 50 (FIG. 11) also located in the body 12.
The draft links 32 are held in a fixed spaced relationship relative to each other by means of an inverted U- shaped arch member 52 having opposite legs 54 connected at their free ends to the links 32 at opposite locations intermediate the ends of the links by a pair of ball-and-socket connections, required for adequate degrees of freedom, only one being shown at 56 (FIG. 3), the connections establishing horizontal transverse pivot axis about which the member 52 is rockable.
A two-way hydraulic actuator 58 forms an upper center link of the hitch structure and includes a rearwardly extending piston rod terminating in a clevis to which a draft hook 59 is connected by a vertical pin 60 which permits the hook to swivel between cast stops on the clevis. A leaf spring 62 acts to center the book. The hook 59 includes an upwardly opening jaw 64in which is received the upper hitch part 28 of the plow mast. A pivot pin 65 connects the actuator cylinder end to the tractor body.
As can best be seen in FIGS; 3 and 5, the actuator 58 extends beneath and is suspended from a transverse bight portion 66 of the member 52 by a compression spring assembly including a cylindrical cartridge 67 secured to the rearward surface of the bight portion by a plurality of bolts 68 and having a rod 69 received axially therein, the rod having a coil spring '70 disposed thereabout and having an upper head portion bearing on the spring and holding the latter against the bottom end of the cartridge. The lower end of the rod projects through the bottom end of the cartridge 67 and is pivotally connected, as at horizontal pin 71, to a swivel connection 72 fixed to the top of and arranged to swivel parallel to the axis of the actuator 58. Thus, when the above-described hitch structure is detached from an implement, as shown in FIG. 3, the spring assembly supports the actuator 58in a generally horizontal position and affords flexibility whereby an operator can manipulate the actuator 58 to. attach it to an implement hitch part. Also it is here noted that the spring 70 in addition serves to keep the jaw 64 engaged with an implement hitch part received therein. This is accomplished due to the fact that the opening in the jaw 64 is spaced above the openings in the jaws 36 a vertical amount chosen so as to be greater, when the actuator is freely suspended as in FIG. 3, than the vertical distance X betweenthe upper and lower hitch parts of an implement such as shown in FIG. 1. Thus, the spring is in compression once the hitch structure is connected to an im plement as shown in FIG. 1. It is here noted that the spring 70 becomes fully compressed within a distance chosen such as to make it impossible for the actuator 58 to bounce low enough during transport, to become unhooked from the upper implement hitch part 28.
Also, it is here noted that the actuator 58 may be suspended from the arch member by resilient means other than the compression spring assembly. For example, leaf or tension springs may be used. Further, it is to be noted that the actuator 58 need not be suspended from the arch member 52 but may be supported at the top thereof; and the jaw 64 may open downwardly with the vertical distance between the opening in the jaw 64 and the openings in the jaws 36, when the actuator is freely supported by the arch member, being lesser than the vertical distance X, the resilient means then being arranged to bias the actuator downwardly to its freely supported position.
Cooperating with the manipulatable actuator 58 to aid the operator in connecting an implement such as the plow 16 to the actuator 58 and to the lower draft links 32 are a pair of removable inserts 73 respectively located in the bottoms of the openings in the jaws 36 of the draft books 34. The inserts 73 respectively include central spherical bearing portions 74 seated in complementary surfaces appearing in the jaw openings at 76. The inserts 73 are respectively heldin place by a pair of dowel pins 78 (only one shown) located in the jaws on opposite sides of the openings and along respective fore-and-aft extending diameters of the bearing portions 74. Thus, the inserts 73 may undergo a limited amount of rocking about the dowel pins 78 for permitting an operator to more easily connect the hitch structure to the lower cylindrical hitch parts of an implement when such hitch parts are canted relative to y the horizontal.
Referring now to FIG. 6, the tractor 10 shown therein is provided with a hitch structure arranged in a weighttransfer hitch mode and being connected to an earthworking implement, here represented as a trailing disk harrow 80, it being noted that many parts of the hitch structure are identical to those previously described and they are given the same reference numerals.
The harrow 80 is of conventional structure and includes a main frame 82 to which gangs of disks, one being shown at 84, are connected. A draft tongue 86 is pivoted to the forwardend of the frame 82 and has a clevis 88 at its forward end, the clevis 88 being connected to an apertured crossbar 89 having opposite ends received in the openings of the jaws of the draft hooks 34. The tongue may be connected directly to drawbar if drawbar has draft sensing capability as will be described below with reference to FIG. 10. Here shown pivotally connected intermediate the ends of the tongue 86, as at 90, is the rear end of a force transmitting link or member 92, which may have its rear end connected to the frame 82 if desired. The forward end of the link 92 is pivotally connected, as at upright pin 94 (FIG. 7), to a rearwardly extending clevis portion of a first pivot block 96. The clevis at the rearward end of the piston rod of the actuator 58 is pivotally connected, by means of a vertical pin (not shown), to the forwardly having a longitudinal opening 9 along the full length of a bottom wall of the guide rail as shown in FIG. 5C. The guide rail member 6 is fixedly inserted into a longitudinal case member 5 having a longitudinal opening 8 similar to the opening 9 along full length of its bottom wall, a slit 21 provided in both side walls, and a downwardly extending rigid flange or abutment 22 at its front. The
' guide rail member 6 is secured above the slits leaving a space between an edge of the guide rail member and the abutment 22 from which the hangers in a row may drop to be dispensed after the leading hanger drops, and the restraining means is retracted. The restraining means 4 is mounted to be reciprocally movable along the case member 5. A bottom wall of the restraining means 4 includes upper steps 23, lower steps 24, and a longitudinal opening 7 at the center of these steps. The upper steps are reciprocally movable in the slits 21, while the lower steps 24 are movable along the outer wall of the case member 5. A top wall of the restraining means 4'is bent downwardly to form an arm 25 for controlling the movement of the leading hanger in a row.
As is apparent from FIG. 4, on the top of guide rail member 6, a solenoid 27 is mounted having an armature 28 which is pivotally connected to a link 26 secured to the top wall of the restraining means 4. The armature 28 is urged or biased rearwardly by a coil tension spring 29 suitably anchored to a link mounted on the guide rail member 6.
The hanger storage magazine assembled in the manner explained above is shown in FIG. 4. As is apparent from FIG. 4, when the solenoid is deenergized, the leading hanger 2 in the row is positioned on the bottom 7 wall of the case member 5 and is held in place by the arm 25, the edges of the abutment 22 and guide rail member 6, as shown in FIG. 4A. When a proper coin is deposited and a particular button is actuated, the solenoid 27 is energized causing its armature 28 to move the restraining means 4 forwardly. Then, the leading hanger in the row. falls through a space created between the arm 25 and the bottom wall of the case member 5 to the delivery chute 12 leading to the delivery station 11. At the same time, the steps 23 of the case member move forwardly in the slits 21 and extend beneath the lower portion of depending arm 22. Thus, the subsequent hanger in the row isprevented from falling from the magazine, as is apparent from FIG. 4B. As the article slides down the delivery chute 12, it actuates the switch 13 to reset the solenoid and return the restraining member 4 to its rearward position by the action of the tension spring 29. The magazine will then be in a condition to release the subsequent hanger.
The hanger used in this invention comprises a head 2 which may be of a spherical or globular form, a leg 10 descending downwardly from the head and a hook at the end of the leg. The hanger as shown in FIG. 7 is a modification of the hanger as shown in FIG. 4, which comprises a head 2, a leg 10, and a hook 30. The hook 30 of this hanger extends at an acute angle from shortly below the middle of the leg 10' like a twig. An extension 31 of the leg 10' is provided under the root of the hook 30. The hangers are charged in the magazine by placing the heads of the hanger within the guide rail and inserting the legs through the openings 7, 8, and 9. When the hanger is released from the magazine, it is automatically disconnected from the article and is collected in the chamber 15. The hanger shown in FIG. 7
is preferable as it is easily detached from the article because of the provision of the extension 31 and a straight hook 30.
FIG. 6 shows the hanger storage magazine of another embodiment of the invention. This embodiment is almost the same as the embodiment shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, except that the restraining means 4' is positioned inside of the guide rail member 6' and an opening is provided at the top wall of the guide rail member 6 to operate the restraining means 4 by means of the link 26 mounted on the restraining means and connected to the armature of the solenoid 27. The hanger storage magazine in this embodiment is operated in the same manner as the preceding embodiment and the same reference numerals adding a prime are used to designate the corresponding parts of the embodiment shown in FIGS. 4 and 5.
Obviously, numerous additional modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings. It is therefore to be understood that within the scope of the appended claims the'invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described herein.
What is claimed as new and desired to be secured by Letters Patent of the United States is:
l. A dispensing machine for releasing a single article at a time comprising:
hanger means for suspending articles to be dispensed, said hanger means including head, leg and hook portions,
holding means for supporting a plurality of said hanger means, said holding means mounted in a side-by-side vertically spaced relationship and inclined with respect to said dispensing machine,
said holding means including guide rail means for supporting said head portions of said hanger means, having an opening extending along the full length thereof and adapted to have said leg portions of said hanger means extend therethrough, and a case member telescoped over said guide rail means, I
said case member being positioned over said guide rail means so as to define a dispensing gap, and having a longitudinal opening adapted to have said leg portions of said hanger means extend therethrough, an abutment at one end thereof, and having slits in side wall portions thereof, and,
restraining means provided at one end of said holding means for selectively restraining said hanger means against forward movement,
said restraining means including horizontal platform means reciprocably movable in said slits.
2. A dispensing machine for releasing a single article at a time comprising:
hanger means for suspending articles to be dispensed, said hanger means including head, leg and hook portions;
holding means for supporting a plurality of said hanger means, said holding means mounted in a side-by-side vertically'spaced relationship and inclined with respect to said dispensing machine;
said holding means including guide rail means, for supporting said head portions of said hanger means, and an opening extending along the full length of said holding means, adapted to have said leg portions of said hanger means extend therethrough;
7 8 restraining means provided at one end of said holding of hanger means; and further comprising:
means for selectively restraining said hanger means horizontal platform means reciprocally moveable against forward movement, said restraining means within said guide rail means in association with said being reciprocally moveable longitudinally with rearm portion for controlling a gap through which spect to said guide rail means; said hanger means are individually delivered to a said restraining means including an arm portion for dispensing position of said guide rail means.
controlling movement of a first one of said plurality