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Publication numberUS3795395 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 5, 1974
Filing dateOct 30, 1972
Priority dateOct 30, 1972
Also published asCA974487A, CA974487A1, DE2354691A1
Publication numberUS 3795395 A, US 3795395A, US-A-3795395, US3795395 A, US3795395A
InventorsJ Parmater, L Ransom
Original AssigneeMosler Safe Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Dispenser for documents such as currency and the like
US 3795395 A
Abstract
The currency dispenser, which issues bills sequentially from an exit, includes a bill storage compartment divided by a movable horizontal plate into a lower chamber in which a stack of horizontally disposed bills to be dispensed is located, and an upper chamber into which bills are diverted which have been fed from the bottom of the stack and rejected by virtue of being partially or completely overlapped. Also included is a bill feeder mechanism which advances the bottom bill of the stack, a stripper assembly which retards the movement of all but the bottom bill and assures the continued advancement of only that bill, and a transport system including a pair of belts which transport a bill from the stripper assembly to the bill exit along a set of metal guide plates which follow a path from the stripper upwardly alongside the storage compartment and thence horizontally over the compartment to the exit. A single bill sensor is included for detecting partially or fully overlapped bills, and controls a bill reject mechanism above the storage compartment for diverting into the reject compartment partially or fully overlapped bills which have been fed from the bottom of the stack.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent lIll Ransom et a1. Mar. 5, 1974 DISPENSER FOR DOCUMENTS SUCH AS 57 'fi' TRKijT" CURRENCY AND THE LIKE 1 Inventors: L l Ransom, Cincinnati; John The currency dispenser, which issues bills sequentially Q- P West Chester, both of from an exit, includes a bill storage compartment di- Ohlo vided by a movable horizontal plate into a lower [73] Assignee: The Mosh. Safe Company, chamber in which a stack of horizontally disposed bills Hamilton, Ohio to be dispensed is located, and an upper chamber into which bills are diverted which have been fed from the Filed: 1 Och 1972 bottom of the stack and rejected by virtue of being [211 App]' N 301,782 partially or completely overlapped. Also included is a bill feeder mechanism which advances the bottom bill of the stack, a stripper assembly which retards the [52] US. Cl 271/4, 271/57, 271/64, movement f a" but the bottom n and assures the 271/125, 271/119, 271/1 continued advancement of only that bill, and a trans- [5 Int. port system including a pair of belts transport a [58] Field of Search 271/3-7, 10, 12, bi f the Stripper m to the bi" exit akmg a p 146, 119., 13 163, 57 set of metal guide plates which follow a path from the I stripper upwardly alongside the storage compartment .1 References Cited and thence horizontally over the compartment to the UNITED STATES PATENTS exit. A single bill sensor is included for detecting par- 1,035,649 8/1912 Stanfield et al 271 4 tially or fully overlapped bills, and Controls a 1,262,383 4/1918 Otarii et al 271 120 j mechanism above the storage compartment for 3,378,251 4/1968 Donahin 271/3 diverting into the reject compartment partially or fully 1,0 6,190 1912 Huddleslonnm 271/35 overlapped bills which have been fed from the bottom 3,506,256 4/1970. Fairris et al 271/3 of the stack.

14 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures l DISPENSER FOR DOCUMENTS SUCH AS CURRENCY AND THE LIKE This invention relates to dispensing apparatus and more particularly to apparatus for dispensing documents, currency, and the like.

Apparatus for dispensing documents typically include a supply of the documents to be dispensed located within the apparatus; some form of feeding mechanism for feeding the documents from the supply, normally individually; and means to transport the documents as they are fed from the supply to some remote issue point such as a slotted opening in the dispenser housing or facade. In dispensing applications where the documents include currency, bills, or some other item of an intrinsically valuable nature, the dispenser typically includes means to prevent the feeding of more than one bill at a time. If a machine'designed to feed bills on a sequential basis is not prevented from dispensing more than one bill at a time, a user will be given more money than is desired, with resultant loss to the dispensing organization.

It has been an objective of this invention to provide a dispenser for issuing documents of intrinsic value, such as currency, on a sequential basis, and in particular a dispenser which includes means for preventing simultaneous dispensing of multiple bills. This objective has been accomplished in accordance with certain principles of this invention by providing, in a currency dispenser having a storage compartment configured to house a vertical stack of superimposed, horizontally disposed bills, the unique combination of a feeder mechanism for horizontally feeding the lowermost bill of the stack, a bill transport for transporting a feed bill upwardly alongside the'stack and thence horizontally back over the stack to an issue point, and a diverter in the transport path above the stack for diverting multiple bills into the storage compartment atop the stack of bills. This invention, by virtue of the fact that the bills are fed from the bottom of the stack and thence up and over the. stack past a diverter atop the stack results in an extremely compact dispenser. In effect, the dispenser need not be much larger than the stack itself. Additionally, since the rejected bills are diverted to a point atop the currency stack, it is unnecessary to have a separate hopper or storage compartment located, for example, at some point along a feed path between the stack of currency and the exit point of the bill.

Another objective ofthis invention has been to provide a simple and reliable feeder for removing, on a one-by-one basis, bills from the bottom of the stack for ultimate transport to the dispenser exit slot via suitable currency transport means. This objective has been accomplished in accordance with further principles of this invention by, first, supporting the currency stack in the storage compartment in a manner such that approximately 50 percent of the bottom of the stack is unsupported and, hence, exposed from below; second, locating beneath the exposed portion of the stack an agitator mechanism which intermittently engages the exposed portion of the stack, displacing it upwardly on an intermittent basis; and, third, providing a horizontal force to the bottom of the stack in the exposed region thereof. The combination of partial support, upward agitation and horizontal feeding motion serves to flex and separate the bills in a manner which enhances the likelihood that bills will be fed from the stack bottom on a one-ata-time basis.

In a preferred form of the invention, the agitator takes the form of a wheel mounted below the unsupported region of the stack for rotation about a horizontal axis, and a plurality of circumferentially spaced, radially disposed studs mounted in the periphery of the wheel. When the wheel rotates, the studs engage the bottom of the stack as the studs travel in an arcuate path, simultaneously agitating the stack upwardly and applying a horizontal feeding motion to the bottommost bill. This horizontal feeding action of the studded wheel, in the preferred form of the invention, is supple mented by a horizontal feed belt which underlies the exposed, unsupported region of the stack for concurrently applying a horizontal feeding action to the bottom bill, supplementing the agitating and feeding action of the studded wheel. It has been discovered that optimum feeding occurs when the studs engage the bottom of the stack in the unsupported region thereof at a point, measured from the leading edge of a bill, equal to approximately one-third the length of the bill, and when the feed belt underlies the unsupported exposed region of the stack for a distance equal to approximately one-third the length of the bill measured between the leading edge thereof and the point where the agitator engages the bottom of the stack.

It has been a further advantage of this invention to provide a currency dispenser having an improved stripping assembly for insuring that when more than one bill is fed from the bottom 'of the stack that only the bottommost bill will ultimately be advanced by the transport means to the currency exit slot. This objective has been accomplished in accordance with certain additional principles of the invention by providing a strip ping assembly between the feeder and transport means which includes a rotating lower wheel having a relatively soft friction surface, and a nonrotatable upper wheel into engagement with the lower wheel, which upper wheel has a relatively hard outer friction skin and a relatively soft inner liner, with the coefficient of friction of the outer skin of the upper wheel being less than the coefficient of friction of the surface of the lower wheel. In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the lower wheel and inner liner of the upper wheel are fabricated of 40 durometer urethane, while the outer skin of the upper wheel is fabricated of durometer urethane. This particular construction has been found to provide excellent stripping qualities while exhibiting a minimum of wear.

A further and equally important objective of this invention has been to provide a single bill detector which 'is simple, yet reliable. A bill detector satisfying these requirements has been constructed utilizing first and second magnetically conductive elements located proximate one side of a bill as it is being transported along its path to the exit slot, and a third magnetically conductive element located proximate the other side of the bill opposite the first and second elements. In accordance with such an arrangement, the magnetic coupling between the first and second elements is dependent upon the distance between the third element and the first and second elements, which in turn is dependent upon the thickness of the bill or bills being transported at any given time, which bills pass between the second elements, which can be done utilizing known inductive, or transformer, techniques, it is possible to generate a bill reject. signal when the displacement of the third element from the first and second elements exceeds a predetermined threshold associated with passage of a single bill. This bill reject signal can then be used to divert the multiple bills into a reject hopper or the like.

The currency dispenser, which issues bills sequentially from an exit 49, includes a bill storage compartment 11 divided by a plate 14 into a lower chamber 11a in which a stack 12 of horizontally disposed bills 13 to be dispensed is located, and an upper chamber llb into which bills are diverted which have been fed from the stack 12 and rejected by virtue of being partially or completely overlapped. Also included is a bill feeder mechanism 25 which advances the bottom bill of the stack 12, a stripper assembly 40 which retards the movement of all but the bottom bill and assures the continued advancement of only that bill, and a transport system including belts 43 and 45 which transport a bill from the stripper assembly 40 to the exit 49 along metal plates 37, 57, 58 and 59. A single bill sensor 142 is included for detecting partially or fully overlapped bills, and controls a bill reject mechanism 105 for diverting into the reject compartment 11b partially or fully overlapped bills which have been fed from the bottom of the stack 12.

Other features, advantages and objectives of the bill dispenser of this invention will become more readily apparent from a detailed description thereof taken in conjunction with the drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of the bill dispenser;

FIG. 2 is a right side elevational view;

FIG. 3 is a left side elevational view;

FIG. 4 is a vertical elevational view in cross-section taken along line 4-4 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 is a right side elevational view of the bill reject mechanism of a portion of FIG. 4, showing the bill reject mechanism in its non-reject position;

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 6- of FIG. 4;

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 77 of FIG. 4;

FIG. 8 is an enlarged vertical cross-sectional view of the reject mechanism operating means shown also in FIG. 3; and

FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 99 of FIG. 4.

The bill dispenser, as shown best in the vertical crosssectional view ofthe right side thereof depicted in FIG. 4, includes a bill storage compartment 11 in which is located in the lower section 11a thereof a stack 12 of horizontally disposed bills, currency, documents, or the like 13. Compartment 11 is defined by front wall 7, left side wall 9, right side wall 16, a generally vertical rear panel 6 secured to side walls by brackets 6a and 6b, and a partial bottom panel 20 secured to the front wall by a bracket 2011. A rectangular plate14 located on top of the stack of bills 12 compresses the bills to facilitate proper feeding thereof from the bottom by a bill feeder 25 to be described. A slot 14a is provided in the plate 14 for reasons to become apparent hereafter.

The storage compartment 11 is accessible for insertion and removal of bills 13 via an opening 15 in the right side wall 16 which is normally closed by a door 17 pivotally connected to the vertical edge 18 of front wall 7 by a hinge 19. The stack of bills 12 is supported at its bottom by the bottom panel 20, which is a flat, horizontal rectangular plate underlying approximately 50-60 percent of the stack, thereby leaving unsupported by the bottom plate approximately 40-50 percent of the bottom surface of the stack. The portion of the stack unsupported by bottom plate 20 is indicated by reference numeral 21, and the portion of the stack supported by plate 20 is indicated by the reference numeral 22. The lower edge of compartment wall 6 is spaced above the plane of bill support plate 20 to permit bills fed from the bottom of the stack 12 to exit the compartment.

To sequentially feed the bills from the bottom of the stack 12 the bill feed mechanism 25 is provided, as best seen in FIGS. 4 and 7. The bill feeder 25 includes an agitator/feeder 26 disposed substantially centrally of the unsupported bottom area 21 of stack 12 at a point to engage the bottom bill one-third its length from the leading edge thereof. The agitator/feeder 26 preferably takes the form of a driven wheel 27 mounted for rotation with a horizontal shaft 28 to which it is keyed. Wheel 27 has four radially disposed, equally circumferentially spaced studs 29 which, as the wheel is driven in a clockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 4, intermittently elevate, or agitate, the bottom of the stack in the unsupported region 21, as well as flex the bills and drive rightwardly the lowest bill. To permit adjustment of the degree of radial projection of the studs 29, the studs preferably take the form of rounded-head screws threaded into appropriately threaded radial holes formed in the wheel 27. Lock nuts 30 which can be threaded down on screw studs 29 to engage the periphery of the wheel 27 lock the studs in the desired adjust able radial position. Preferably the outer ends of studs 29 are adjusted to project above the upper surface of bottom plate 20 a distance d (see enlarged view of FIG. 4) equal to approximately /s" A. The slot 140 in plate 14 atop bill stack 12 accommodates projecting studs 29, enabling bills immediately below the plate 14 to be fed by the agitator/feeder 26 without mechanical interference between the plate and studs.

The theory of operation ofthe agitator/feeder 26 is not entirely understood. However, its success is believed accounted for, at least partly, by the fact that the studs 29 intermittently flex the bills in the bottom region of the stack to effectively break-up the frictional forces existing between adjacent bills, particularly the lowermost two bills, facilitating feeding of the bottom bill. Additionally, the agitating action of studs 29, which intermittently move the stack upwardly an appreciable displacement d, is believed to momentarily take the weight of the stack off the lowermost bill, breaking contact between the bottommost two bills, and thereby enhancing feeding of the bottom bill.

Also included in the bill feeder 25 are a pair of feed belts 32, 33. Feed belt 32 trains over a driven wheel 34 mounted on a horizontal drive shaft 35 to which it is keyed, and an idler wheel 36 keyed to shaft 28. Feed 7 belt 33 also trains over the driven roll 34, and an idler wheel 38 keyed to shaft 28. The idler wheels 36 and 38 about which feed belts 32 and 33 train are located on opposite sides of the studded wheel 26 as shown best in FIG. 7. The diameter of the idler wheels 36 and 38 and the vertical location of shaft 28 is selected such that the upper surfaces of the feed belts 32 and 33 are v disposed slightly above the horizontal plane of the upper surface of support plate which is in. contact with the lower surface of the bottommost bill in the stack 12. The feed belts 32 and 33 which move in a clockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 4, in combination with the agitator/feeder 26, both of which are intermittently driven in a manner to be described, function to advance the bottommost bill 13 in the stack 12 to the right to a point wherein the leading edge 39 of the bill being advanced is inserted into the mouth 50 of a stripper assembly 40 to be described. The composition of the feed belts 32, 33, which are preferably fabricated of urethane having a 60 Durometer hardness, is selected to apply a frictional force to the bottom bill of thestack which exceeds the sum of (a) the frictional force between the lowest two bills of the stack and (b) the friction between the bottom bill and plate 20.

The positionof the agitator/feeder 26 is such that initially the agitator/feeder contacts the bottom bill ata point from the leading edge thereofequal to approximately one-third the length of a bill. The position and length of the feed belts 32 and 33 are such that they initially contact the bottom bill for av distance equal to approximately one-third the bill length measuring from the leading edge thereof. The initial length and position of feed belt engagement and agitator/feeder position with respect to the bottom bill have been found to be of the roll '34 which is keyed to driven shaft 35. The exterior surface or periphery of the friction cover 44 extends above the upper-surfaces of associated feed belts '32 and 33 to insure engagement therewith of a bill being fed rightwardly, as viewed in FIG. 4, by the feed belts and agitator/feeder 26.

The upper stripper assembly 40, which is located above the lower stripper wheel 42, includes a metal core 46 in the form of a disc or wheel, the periphery of which has fixed to it an inner lining 47, as shown in 7 FIG. 4. Secured to the periphery of the inner lining 47 is a friction surface 48 partially surrounding the lining 47. The core 46 of the upper stripper assembly 40 is fixed between ends 500 and 50b of levers 51a and 51b mounted for pivotal motion exteriorly of side walls 16 and 9 about a horizontal axis by a pin 52 extends between and anchored to the side walls, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3. The other ends 53a and 53b of levers 51a and 51b are connected to the lower ends of tension springs 54a and 54b, the upper ends of which are anchored to the side walls 16 and 9 via pins 55a and 55b. Springs 544 and 54b urge the levers 51a and 51b counterclockwise and clockwise, as viewed in FIGS. 2 and 3, respectively, about pivot pin 52, with the result that the upper stripper disc 41 is biased downwardly such that its friction surface 48 is urged into contact with the upper surface of the friction skin 44 of the lower stripper wheel 42. Upward motion of the upper stripper disc 41 is limited by adjustable stops 56a and 56b secured to side walls 16 and 9 in positions underlying'the spring-connected ends 53a and 53b of levers 51a 51b, which prevent clockwise and'counterclockwise pivotal motion of levers 51a and 51b, respectively, about pivots 52 beyond a predetermined selectively adjustable point. Limitation of the upward motion of the upper stripper disc 41 establishes an upper limit as to the number of bills which can be fed between stripper members 41 and 42 at any given instant.

The coefficient of friction of the skin 44 of lower stripper wheel 42 should be selected such that the resultant friction force between it and the lower surface of a bill in contact with it exceeds the friction existing between the upper surface of the bill and the upper stripper surface 48. Thus, the coefficient of friction of the outer surface 48 of the upper stripper disc 41 is such' that the frictional force between it and the upper surface of a bill in contact with it exceeds the friction between the skin 44 of lower stripper. wheel 42 and the bottom of the bill in contact with it. Preferably, skin 44 of the lower stripper wheel 42 is fabricated of urethane having a hardness of 40 Durometer. In practice, the outer skin 48 of upper stripper disc 41 is fabricated of urethane having a hardness of 80 Durometer and good wear-resistant properties. The inner lining 47 between metal core 46 and friction surface 48 is preferably fabricated of amaterial which is softer than the outer surface 48, for example, 40 Durometer urethane. This enables the outer skin 48 to deflect under the action of bias springs 54a and 54b, increasing the contact area of the skin 48 and a bill in contact with it. A stripper assembly having the combination of soft and hard skins and linings 44, 47 and 48 noted has been found to produce excellent stripping results.

To transport the bills from the feeder 25 to the exit 49 of the dispenser, a bill transport is provided which includes a transport roll 60, and a pair of endless transport belts 43, 45 cooperating with stationary guide plates 37, 57, 58 and'59. The guide plates 37, 57, 58 and 59, in combination with transport belts 43 and 45 which move in the direction of arrows 61, establish a transport path for a bill from a point adjacent the stripper assembly 40 to the dispensed bill exit 49. The transport path includes, successively, a horizontal feed path section parallel to guide plates 37, a vertical feed path I section parallel to guide plate 57, and a horizontal feed path section parallel to guide plates 58 and 59. The transport path defined by guide plates 37, 57, 58 and 59 and cooperating sections of transport belts 43 and 45, in combination with a bill feeder 25 which feeds bills 13 from the bottom of the stack 12, enables bills fed from the bottom of the stack to be dispensed at exit 49 located above the stack, thereby enhancing the compactness of the bill dispenser.

To urge the belts 43 and 45 against the guide plates 37, 57, 58, 59 as is necessary to insure proper transporting of a bill located therebetween, a plurality of spring-biased rolls 64, 65, 66 and 67 are provided. The rolls 64-67 are mounted on shafts 68-71 journalled in slots 72-75 formed in the side walls 16 and 9. Suitably anchored leaf springs 68' and 68", 69 and 69", 70 and 70", and 71' and 71" anchored to side walls 9 and 16, respectively, bear against shafts 68-71 in a direction such as to urge the belts 43, 45 against the transport guide plates 37, 57, 58, 59.

The transport belts 43, 45 train at their lower, front end over an idler roll mounted for horizontal motion on a shaft 81. The diameter of the idler roll 80 is selected such that the upper surface of the transport belts 43, 45 at its forward end is spaced from the guide plate 37 to effectively define a mouth 82 into which the leading edge of a bill issued by bill feeder is inserted to facilitate transport thereof to the dispenser exit 49. The outer sections of the transport belts 43, train over idler rolls 84 and 85 and driven roll 86 which are mounted on horizontal shafts 87, 88 and 158, respectively. The inner sections of transport belts 43, 45 guide over a lower set of idler rolls 90, 91 mounted on horizontal stub shafts 92 and 92 fixed to side walls 9 and 16, and an upper set of idler rolls 94, 95 mounted on a horizontal shaft 96. The diameter of upper idler rollers 94, 95 and the location of their mounting shaft 96 is selected such that the peripheries of idler rolls are located on opposite sides of, and slightly above, the smoothly curved junction 57-58 of guide plates 57 and 58. By locating the peripheries of rolls 94 and 95 above plate junction 57-58, the belts 43, 45 ride on the rolls and not plates 57, 58 in the course of making the turn, thereby reducing friction between the belts and the plates 57 and 58 in the region of the 90 turn. Portions of guide plates 57 and 58 on either side of the junction 57, 58 have been removed to permit mounting of the rollers 94 and in the manner described, as shown best in FIG. 6. Similarly, the diameter of wheels 90, 91 and the location of stub shafts 92, 92' are selected such that the peripheries of wheels 90 and 91 are slightly above the junction 37-57 of guide plates 37 and 57 which is located between the wheels. To facilitate mounting of the wheels 90, 91 relative to the guide plate junction 37-57 in the manner noted, portions of the guide plates 37 and 57 are removed as best shown in FIG. 9. The purpose of making the peripheries of wheels 90 and 91 extend above the plates 37 and 57 is to raise the belts 43, 45 at the 90 turn above plate junction 37-57, thereby reducing friction between the belts and the plates at the 90 turn.

The coefficient of friction ofbelts 43, 45 is chosen such that the friction force applied to a bill between them and the guide plates 37, 57, 58, 59 exceeds the friction between the bill and the plates. However, the coefficient of friction of the belts 43, 45 must not be so large that the belts will not slide on the plates 37, 57, 58, 59 in the course of dispensing a bill. Preferably, the belts 43, 45 are neoprene.

The transport roll 60 located adjacent the mouth 82 of guide plate 37 and transport belts 43, 45 preferably takes the form of a soft neoprene foam liner 100 fixed to the periphery of the idler roll 80 and located centrally of the transport belts 43 and 45 which train over the idler roll 80. The peripheral speed of the friction liner 100 is selected to exceed the peripheral speed of the driven lower stripper wheels 42 to prevent bunching of the leading edge portion of a bill inserted in mouth 82 by the till feed mechanism 25.

A bill reject mechanism is provided to divert, to the upper portion 11b of storage compartment 11 located above plate 14, bills which are to be rejected, that is, not dispensed from exit 49, by reason of being either partially or fully overlapped. Partial or full overlap is detected by a single bill detector 142 to be described. The reject mechanism 105 includes a pair of cooperating combs 106 and 107 having interleaved teeth 108 and 109. The combs 106 and 107 are mounted for pivotal movement about horizontal shafts 110 and 111 in a gap between guide plates 58 and 59. The combs 106 and 107 pivot between a bill reject position shown in FIG. 4 in which the combs 106 and 107 are raised and lowered, respectively and a non-reject position shown in FIG. 5 in which the combs 106 and 107 are in respectively lower and upper positions substantially parallel to each other.

In the non-reject position wherein the combs 106 and 107 are parallel to each other, their upper surfaces are flush with the upper surfaces of guide plates 58 and 59, permitting a bill transported between plates 58 and belts 43 and 45 to be transported without diversion to reject compartment 111) to a position overlying guide plate 59, eventually being issued from dispenser exit 49. In the reject position, the combs 106, 107, which are angled as shown in FIG. 4, cause a transported bill overlying guide plate 58 to be diverted into the reject compartment 11b to a position overlying the plate 14 as exemplified by rejected bill 13r.

Rejection occurs as the leading edge of a transported bill abuts the lower surface of the raised comb 106, whereupon it is deflected downwardly, eventually being gripped between cooperating upper and lower driven reject rolls 115 and 116 keyed to horizontal driven shafts 117 and 118. The upper surface of the lower comb 107 and the lower surface of the upper comb 106 serve to guide the rejected bill between the driven rolls 115 and 116.

A light source 119 and phototransducer 120 located below and above the path ofa rejected bill 13r respond to the leading and trailing edges of the rejected bill in a manner such that, with suitable electrical circuitry (not shown), it is possible to ascertain that a rejected bill has in fact been fully deposited into the reject portion 111) of the storage compartment 11, in which case operation of the dispenser is stopped.

Operation of the combs 106 and 107 is accomplished by a rotary solenoid mounted to the exterior wall 9 of the dispenser, shown in FIG. 3. Associated with the rotary solenoid 125 is a cable 126 which wraps around each of two rolls 128 and 129 which are keyed to shafts 110 and 111 to which the combs 106 and 107 are also keyed. Lock screws 132 and 133 threaded into bores formed in rolls 128 and 129 positively prevent slippage between the cable 126 and the rolls 128 and 129, as shown in FIG. 8. The lock screws 132 and 133 clamp sections 126a and 126b of the cable 126 to the rolls 128 and 129, the cable sections 126a and 126b passing through slots 128a and 129a formed in rolls 128 and 129. The cable 126 is normally biased in the direction of arrow 137 by a tension spring 138 secured at one end to the end 127 of cable 126 and at its other end to an anchor member 139 which is bi-directionally adjustable in a direction parallel to the horizontal disposition of spring 138. With the end 127 of cable 126 normally biased in the direction of arrow 137, the wheels 128 and 129 are biased in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 8, with the result that the combs 106 and 107 are normally maintained in their reject position shown in FIG. 4. The other end 124 of the cable 126 is connected to a pin 140 of the rotary solenoid 125. Upon actuation of the solenoid 125, the pin 140 moves in a counterclockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 3, with the result that the cable 126 moves in the direction of arrow 141, causing the rolls 128 and 129 to rotate in a counterclockwise direction as viewed in FIGS. 3 and 8. counterclockwise movement of rolls 128 and 129 pivot the combs 1116 and 107 to the upper and lower positions, respectively, constituting the non-reject position (FIG. Thus, the reject combs 106 and 107 are normally maintained in their reject position by the tension spring 133, but upon actuation of the rotary solenoid 125 the combs are placed in their non-reject position.

A light source 135 and phototransducer 136 positioned below and above the path of a bill being ejected from dispenser exit 49 is provided to facilitate ascertaining that a non-rejected bill has in fact been dispensed. The light source 135 and phototransducer 136 respond to the leading and trailing edges of a nonrejected bill passing therebetween, and in combination with suitable electrical circuitry (not shown), provides positive assurance that a non-rejected bill whose leading edge passes between the source and transducer 135, 136 has in fact been dispensed from dispenser exit 419. In practice, the information provided by the light source 135 and phototransducer 136 is used to count the number of bills actually dispensed from exit 49, as well as stop operation of the dispenser if a non-rejected bill has not been dispensed.

For obvious reasons, it is desirable to avoid dispensing bills which are in a condition of partial or full overlap. For example, if bills are completely overlapped, the phototransducer 136 and source 135 will signal the dispensing of only a single bill when in fact more than one bill was dispensed. Overlapped bills produce much the same problem. To detect partially or completely overlappedbills, a single bill detector 142, preferably a magnetic proximity sensor, is provided. The proximity sensor 142 includes an elongated cylindrical magnetically conductive core 147 which is magnetically and electrically insulated from a tubular magnetically conductive core 148 which surrounds it. The cores 147 and 148 are positioned with their outer ends 147a and 1480 located in an opening formed in the junction 37/57 of guides 37 and 57 such that ends 147a and 148a are flush with the outer surface of the guide plate junction. Cores 147 and 148 are commercially available from Transducer Systems, Incorporated, Willow Grove, Pennsylvania.

Magnetic coupling between core ends 1470 and 148a is provided by a magnetically conductive leaf spring 150 overlying the ends 147a and 1480 of the core at a point externally of plate junction 37/57. The leaf spring, which is mounted to a stationary bracket 151, moves away from the ends 1417a and 148a of cores 147 and 148 variable distances equal to total thickness of the bill or bills, and hence the number of bills, interposed therebetween in the course of being transported from feeder 25 to the dispenser exit 49 by belts 43, 45. The variable movement of the magnetically conductive leaf spring 1511 from the core ends 147a and 148a, dependent on the number of bills therebetween, at any instant, variably alters the magnetic coupling between the cores 147 and 148. The variation in magnetic coupling of the cores 147 and 148 affected by the leaf spring 150 can be sensed by known inductive techniques, such as by incorporating the cores 147 and 148 in a transformer and monitoring the electrical relationship of the primary and secondary transformer windings wound on the cores 147 and'Mfl. For example, for a given input voltage, the output voltage decreases from a maximum value when leaf spring 150 is against core ends 147a and 148a. if the decrease exceeds that known for a single bill, a signal indicating multiple bills, either partially or fully overlapped, is generated to operate the bill reject mechanism 105. ln practice, only if the output voltage drop exceeds that corresponding to 50 percent bill thickness and is less than that corresponding to two bills, is the bill accepted as a single bill.

Bills which are only partially overlapped can be sensed by monitoring the duration between (a) the instant sensor 142 detects the presence of one or more bills, i.e., the leading edge of the first bill, and (b) the instant the sensor 142 detects the absence of a bill, i.e., the trailing edge of the second bill. If the monitored interval exceeds the normal time requiredfor passage of a single bill past sensor 142, a partially overlapped bill condition is present. In practice if the monitored interval exceeds the time normally required for l A bills to pass, an overlapped bill condition is indicated.

To facilitate driving the transport belts 43, 4-5, the reject rolls 115, 116, the feed belts 32, 33, agitator/feeder 26, transport roll 60, and stripper wheel 42, a motor 121 stationarily mounted to wall 16 and having a horizontal output shaft 122 extending through walls 9 and 16 is provided. Keyed to the motor output shaft 122 exteriorly of wall 9 are juxtaposed inner and outer toothed drive pulleys 123, 124 over which are trained upper and lower toothed drive belts 112 and 113.

Upper toothed drive belt 112 engages toothed pulleys 156 and 157 keyed to shafts 117 and 118 for driving reject rolls and 116. Toothed belt 112 also engages toothed pulleys 160 and 161 keyed to shafts 89 and 158, and drives roll 86 over which transport belts 43 and 45 are trained, thereby driving the belts. The belts 43, 45, via roll 80 over which the belts train, drive transport roll 611 whose liner 1011 is secured to the periphery of roll 80. A toothed pulley 163 rotatably mounted to the end of a bar 164 engages the belt 112. The bar 164, which is slotted to receive a pair of spaced threaded studs 1641a extending from the side wall 9, can be locked in selectively adjustable positions by nuts 16 1b threaded on the studs, adjusting the position of the idler pulley 163 and, hence, the tensioning of the upper drive belt 112.

The lower drive belt 113 engages a toothed pulley 169. Pulley 169 is connected to the shaft 35 via an electrically-operated clutch 169a. Keyed to shaft 35 is the roll 34 over which the feed belts 32 and 33 train and to which the friction skin 44 of the lower stripper wheel 42 is secured. Upon engagement of the clutch 169a, driving movement of the toothed pulley 169, imparted by driven toothed belt 113, rotates the roll 34, in turn rotating the lower stripper skin 44 and the feed belts 32 and 33 trained thereon. Movement of belts 32 and 33 in turn rotate the studded agitator/feeder 26.

Except where indicated otherwise, all mounting shafts for wheels and rolls are journalled at their opposite ends in suitable bearings located in holes formed in side walls 9 and 16.

In operation, when it is desired to dispense a bill from exit slot 49, the motor 121 is energized. Energization of motor 121 initiates movement of tooth drive belts 113 and 112 in the direction of arrows 113a and 112a. Concurrent with energization of motor 121, clutch 169a, which selectively interconnects pulley 169 driven by belt 113 with shaft 35 which drives the feed belts 32 and 33 and the lower stripper 12 via roll 34, is energized to initiate motion of the feeding belts 32 and 33 and the lower stripper 12. Movement of the feed belts 32 and 33 rotates the agitator/feeder 26 in a clockwise direction as viewed in H0. 4, initiating feed of the bottommost bill from stack 12. Continued rotation of the agitator/feeder 26 and the feed belts 32, 33 advances the bottommost bill of the stack 12 rightwardly, as viewed in FIG. 4, causing the bill to pass under the lower edge of compartment wall 6 spaced above the plane of plate 20, eventually passing into mouth 50 between the upper and lower stripper members 41 and 42. Usually, the bottom several bills of the stack will move forward until they encounter the stripper assembly 40. At this point, the lower stripper wheel engages the bottom of the lowest bill, advancing it rightwardly, while the upper stationary stripper disc 41 retards movement of any other bills which have been fed along with the bottommost bill. Continued rotation of the bottom stripper wheel 42 advances the bill further to the right, where the leading edge thereof enters mouth 82 between feed plate 37 and the transport roll 60.

As the bill continues to be fed rightwardly by the lower stripper wheel 42, feed belts 32, 33 and agitator/- feeder 26, the feeding action is supplemented, initially by the transport roll 60 and thereafter by the transport belts 43, 45. The transport belts 43, 45 and roll 60 are driven by upper toothed belt 112, beginning with energization of motor 121 at the start of the bill dispensing cycle.

When the leading edge ofthe bill is sensed by the single bill sensor 142, an electrical signal is generated which, among other things, disengages the clutch 1690 following a short delay, terminating movement of the bottom stripper wheel 42, feed belts 32, 33 and agitator/feeder 26. At this point the trailing edge of the first bill has just passed under the stripper assembly 40 and the leading edge of the next bill has just entered the mouth of the stripper assembly. Stopping the feeder mechanism 25 and stripper wheel 42 at this time causes the second bill to remain'in the stripper assembly 40 where it cannot be picked-up by the transport roll 60 and belts 43, 45. The first bill continues movement under the action of transport belts 43, 45 past the sensor 142. Assuming the sensor 142 and associated circuitry (not shown) detect that only a single bill (vis-avis partially or fully overlapped bills) is being transported, a signal is generated to energize the solenoid 125 of the bill reject mechanism 105. Energization of the solenoid 125 places the combs 106 and 107 in the non-reject position shown in FIG. 5. With combs 106 and 107 in this position, continuing transport action of belts 43 and 45 successively drives the bill over guide plates 57 and 58, the upper surfaces of the combs 106 and 107, and thence over guide plate 59. At this point the leading edge of the bill is sensed by the combination of light source 135 and transducer 136. The bill continues to be transported along guide plate 59 by the transport belts 43, 45 until the bill has passed through exit 49. in the process, the trailing edge of the bill passes between the light source 135 and the transducer 136, permitting the sensing of the trailing edge of the bill. Assuming both the leading edge of the bill and the trailing edge of the bill have been sensed by source l35/transducer 136 in the course of transporting the bill along guide plate 59 and eventually through exit 49, an electrical signal is generated by suitable circuitry (not shown) to again enable the engagement of the. clutch 169a, permitting the bill feeder 25 to feed the third bill from the stack 12 and the stripper wheel 42 to resume feeding the second bill. The electrical signal also deactivates the solenoid to return the reject combs 106 and 107 to their normal reject condition. If both the leading and trailing edge of a non-rejected bill are not sensed by the light source and phototransducer 136 in a predetermined interval, it is assumed the bill has become jammed and the dispenser is rendered inoperative.

If the single bill sensor 142 has detected a condition wherein the bill feed mechanism 25 has dispensed two bills from the bottom of the stack which are partially or completely overlapped, a reject signal is generated. The reject signal effectively prevents the solenoid 125 from being energized, in turn leaving the combs 106 and 107 in their normal reject position shown in FIG. 4. The partially or fully overlapped bills, as they are transported by the transport belts 43, 45 are diverted into the reject compartment 11b via combs 106 and 107 and drive rolls 115 and 116 upon reaching the bill reject mechanism 105. The light source 119 and phototransducer 120, like light source 135 and photocell 136 at exit 49, function to sense the leading and trailing edge of the rejected bill. If both the leading and trailing edge of the rejected bill are sensed, a suitable signal is generated to indicate that a rejected bill has been properly diverted into the storage compartment 11b, and the clutch 1690 is again enabled to permit the feeding of the next bill from stack 12. If after receiving a reject signal from the single bill detector 142 both the leading and trailing edges of the rejected bill are not sensed by light source 119 and phototransducer 120, it is assumed that the bill is jammed and dispenser operation is terminated.

Having described the invention, it is claimed:

1. A document dispenser for sequentially issuing at a dispenser exit documents initially in a stack, comprisa storage compartment configured to store a vertical stack of superimposed horizontally disposed documents, said compartment having a bottom, and at least first and second oppositely disposed spaced substantially vertical side walls, i

feed means disposed proximate said stack bottom to feed the bottom document in said stack in a horizontal direction to advance the leading edge thereof to a first point exteriorly of said first side wall adjacent the lower edge thereof,

transport means for transporting said fed document upwardly from said first point to a second point adjacent the upper edge of said first side wall and thereafter to a third point adjacent the upper edge of said second side wall along a path overlying said compartment for delivery to said document exit,

a document diverter located along said path overlying said compartment for diverting a document fed from the bottom of said stack into the top of said compartment, and

a detector located to interact with documents moving between said first point and said diverter, and control means responsive to detection of overlapping documents by said detector for controlling said diverter to divert overlapped documents into the top of said compartment.

2. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said compartment bottom has an opening therein adjacent said lower edge of said first side wall to expose a significant region of the bottom of said stack; and wherein said feed means includes an agitator for intermittently upwardly displacing the bottom of said stack in said exposed region thereof.

3. The apparatus of claim 2 wherein said agitator is a pivotal stud having a free end which moves in an arcuate path, at least a portion of said arcuate path being located within said compartment and above the plane of said opening in said compartment bottom for applying an upwardly directed and horizontally directed force to the bottom of said stack in said exposed region thereof.

4. The apparatus of claim 3 further including a horizontally disposed movable feed belt disposed adjacent said stud underlying said opening to impart, incooperation with said horizontally directed force applied to the stack by said stud, horizontal feeding motion to the lowermost document in said stack.

5. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein said region of said stack bottom exposed by said opening is approximately 50 percent of the bottom of said stack, wherein said stud is located to engage said stack bottom at a point, measured from the leading edge of a fed document, equal to approximately one-third the length of a document, and wherein said belt underlies said stack substantially only between said point where said stud engages said stack and said lower edge of said first side wall.

6. The apparatus of claim 3 wherein said region of said stack bottom exposed by said opening is at least approximately one-third of the bottom of said stack, and wherein said stud is located to engage said stack bottom at a point, measured from the leading edge of a fed document, equal to approximately one-third the length of a document.

7. The apparatus of claim 3 wherein said agitator includes a wheel mounted beneath said opening for rotation about a horizontal axis, said wheel mounting at its periphery said stud for agitating said exposed stack region as said wheel rotates about its axis.

8. The apparatus of claim 7 further including a horizontally disposed movable feed belt underlying said opening and engaging said stud-mounting wheel for imparting, in cooperation with said horizontally directed force applied to the stack by said stud, horizontal feed ing motion to the lowermost document in said stack.

9. The apparatus of claim 1 further including a stripper assembly interposed between said feed means and said transport means, said stripper assembly including a. a rotating lower wheel having a relatively soft friction surface, and

b. a nonrotating movable upper wheel overlying said lower -wheel and normally biased into contact therewith, said nonrotating wheel including an outer skin of relatively hard friction material and an inner skin of relatively soft material, the coefficient of friction of said lower wheel exceeding that of said upper wheel.

10. The apparatus of claim 8 wherein said lower wheel friction surface includes 40 durometer urethane, said inner skin includes 40 durometer urethane, and said-outer skin includes 80 durometer urethane.

11. The apparatus of claim 1, said detector including first and second magnetically conductive elements positioned proximate one side of a transported document and a third magnetic element positioned proximate the other side of said transported document opposite said first and second elements for altering the magnetic coupling therebetween to an extent correlated to the thickness of the document or documents located between said third element and said first and second elements, and wherein said control means includes circuit means responsive to said coupling for producing an electrical signal for controlling said diverter to divert overlapped documents.

T2. The document dispenser of claim 1 wherein said transport means includes a. a document guide plate having a vertical section disposed generally perpendicular to the horizontal plane of said documents in said stack and extending upwardly generally parallel to said stack from said first point to said second point, and a horizontal section overlying said compartment and extending between said second point and said third point, and

b. a movable belt having horizontal and vertical belt sections in contact with said horizontal and vertical plate sections, respectively, for frictionally engaging a document interposed therebetween and transporting it along said guide plates from said first point to said third point.

13. The document dispenser of claim 12 wherein said diverter includes a pivotal member located below said horizontal belt section, said pivotal member being positionable between an upper position angled with respect to said horizontal belt section in which a document is diverted into said compartment along a path underlying said pivotal member, and a lower position below said horizontal belt section in which a document is transported to said exit along a path overlying said pivotal member.

14. A document dispenser for sequentially issuing at a dispenser exit documents initially in a stack comprising:

a storage compartment for storing a vertical stack of horizontally disposed documents, said compartment having a stationary partial bottom underlying significantly less than the entire bottom surface of the stack, leaving unsupported by said compartment bottom a significant region of said bottom stack surface,

an agitator for intermittently upwardly displacing said stack in said unsupported region thereof,

a horizontal movable feed belt engaging said stack in said unsupported region thereof for horizontally feeding a document from the bottom of said stack, when actuated,

a stripper in horizontal juxtaposition to said stack to receive a document fed by said feed belt, said stripper including:

a. anonrotatable upper member having a relatively hard outer layer located to engage the upper surface of a document fed by said belt, and a relatively soft inner layer interiorly of said friction surface, the coefficient of friction of said outer layer exceeding the coefficient of friction of said documents, and

b. a rotatable lower disc located below said upper disc to have its periphery engage the lower surface of a document fed by said belt, said lower disc periphery having a coefficient of friction exceeding the coefficient of friction of said outer layer of said upper member,

a document guide plate having 15 16 a. avertical section disposed generally perpendicuhaving horizontal and vertical belt sections in to the honzomal Plane of Said documents in contact with said horizontal and vertical plate stack and extendmg P w generally f sections, respectively, for frictionally engaging a allel to said stack from a point ad acent said stnpdocument interposed therebetween and transper to a point above said compartment, and I b. a horizontal section overlying said compartment pomng along Sald plates from Sam and extending between said vertical guide plate P to said document section and a document exit, and a movable belt

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Classifications
U.S. Classification271/4.6, 271/163, 271/119, 271/303, 271/263, 902/16, 271/125
International ClassificationB65H7/12, G07D1/00, B65H3/04, G07D11/00, B65H3/62
Cooperative ClassificationB65H7/125, G07D11/0003
European ClassificationB65H7/12C, G07D11/00D
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Oct 3, 1995ASAssignment
Owner name: MOSLER INC., OHIO
Free format text: RELEASE;ASSIGNOR:BANKERS TRUST COMPANY;REEL/FRAME:007662/0368
Effective date: 19950901
Jul 19, 1990ASAssignment
Owner name: BANKERS TRUST COMPANY, NEW YORK
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:MOSLER, INC.;REEL/FRAME:005449/0239
Effective date: 19900518