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Publication numberUS3858462 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 7, 1975
Filing dateSep 20, 1973
Priority dateSep 20, 1973
Also published asCA1024726A1
Publication numberUS 3858462 A, US 3858462A, US-A-3858462, US3858462 A, US3858462A
InventorsOrlando John B, Ruggiero Anthony M
Original AssigneeDefiance Butter Machine Compan
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for covering buttons
US 3858462 A
Abstract
Apparatus for covering buttons operable in an automatic, semi-automatic or manual mode. The apparatus includes a rotatable table having alternately positioned shell and back receiving lower dies, means for automatically delivering the shells and backs to their respective lower dies, a reciprocating upper die synchronized for movement with the rotation of the rotatable table and engageable with the lower dies at a first station to transfer a shell and fabric covering from a shell receiving lower die to the upper die and press-fit a back from a back receiving lower die into the covered shell in the upper die to form an assembled covered button and having means permitting its use with a range of fabric cover thicknesses, and means for ejecting the assembled covered buttons.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

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Orlando et al.

[ APPARATUS FOR COVERING BUTTONS Prt'mar Examiner-Granville Y. Custer Jr. 751 t. hB.Old,Htdl, Y 1 men 01's i a i g g fg g z Attorney, Agent, or FirmDavis, Hoxie, Faithfull &

both of NY. HaPgOOd [73] Assignee: Defiance Butter Machine Company,

Long Island City, NY. [57] ABSTRACT [22] Filed. Sept 20 1973 Apparatus for covering buttons operable in an automatic, semi-automatic or manual mode. The a paratus p pp 399,332 includes a rotatable table having alternately positioned shell and back receiving lower dies, means for auto- [52] U5 CL 79/5 matically delivering the shells and backs to their re- [51] Int-.Cl 1/06 spective lower dies, a reciprocating pp die Synchr0 [58] Field 79/3 4 5 nized for movement with the rotation of the rotatable table and engageable with the lower dies at a first sta- [56] References Cited tion to transfer a shell and fabric covering from a shell receiving lower die to the upper die and press-fit a UNITED STATES PATENTS back from a back receiving lower die .into the covered hell in the upper to form an assembled covered 461,649 10/1891 etalbutton and having means permitting its use with a 1 kg range of fabric cover thicknesses, and means for eject- 2 289 267 7/1942 Haiiiriilifiii mg the assembled Covered buttons- 3,442,l63 5/1969 Chalfin et al. r. 3,548,689 12/1970 Newig 79/5 8 Clams 9 Drawmg F'gures z t I t. I i

2/ V 1 g i l J I l l u H /7/ "//J 7' I J 04 I W i I I o 7 t l! E I I ii an a l?! w r 3a in l M w :7 wx" T "fl l Patented Jan. 7, 1975 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 TUE meme Jan. 7, 1975 3,858,462

@ Sheets-Swat 4 APPARATUS FOR COVERING BUTTONS The present invention relates to a button covering machine, and more specifically to a button covering machine which is operable in an automatic, semi automatic or manual mode with a range of fabric cover thicknesses without intermittent adjustment.

Various button covering machines are known in the art. Most ofthe known machines operate in the manual mode requiring the operator to manually feed the shells and fabric covering to a die. Other known button covering machines are capable of automatic operation by feeding fabric, shells and backs into a lower die and employing cooperation between this lower die and upper dies to form a covered button. Examples of button covering machines which feed fabric and shells into a lower die and backs into an upper die and provide cooperation of the lower upper dies to assemble buttons are described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,548,689 (Newig) and 3,442,163 (Chalfin et al.).

It is an object of the present invention to provide an improved button covering machine, operable in the automatic, semi-automatic or manual mode, including an upper die and shelland back-receiving lower dies.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a button covering machine operable with a range of fabric cover thicknesses without intermittent adjustment.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a button covering machine for transferring a fabric covering and shell from a lower die to the upper die.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a means synchronized with the movement of the upper die to prevent retraction of the upper die during transfer of the fabric covering and shell to the upper die.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a button covering machine which includes an automatic force control means.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide means for transferring the assembled fabric covered button to the lower die.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a reliable button covering machine capable of a high rate of operation.

Other objects, aspects and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the detailed description.

Briefly, the button covering machine of the present invention includes a rotatable table with different lower dies for alternately receiving shells and backs, a reciprocable ram carrying an upper die at a first station, means for synchronizing the reciprocating movement of the ram and upper die at the first station withthe rotational indexing of the lower shell receiving dies to the first station, means for engaging the upper die to restrict the upward movement of the upper die when reciprocated into contact with the lower shell receiving dies at the first station, means to transfer the fabric covering and shells to the upper die, means within the ram permitting use of the upper die with a range of fabric cover thicknesses, means for retracting the upper die engaging means when the upper die is reciprocated into contact with the lower back receiving dies for pressfitting of the back into the covered shell to form an assembled covered button in the lower die, and means for ejecting the assembled covered buttons.

The present invention is illustrated in the accompanying'drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a front view in elevation of the button covering machine;

FIG. 2 is a top plan taken along line 2-2 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a side view in elevation, with parts broken away, of the ram, fork slide'and upper die;

FIG. 4 is a bottom plan view of the fork slide and upper die of FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the shell chute and shell escapement means with parts broken away;

FIG. 5a is a sectional view along line 5a 5a of FIG. 5, showing a shell being delivered to a lower shell receiving die;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the back chute with parts broken away;

FIG. 6a is a sectional view taken along line 6a-6a of FIG. 6, showing a back being delivered to a lower back receiving die; and

FIG. 6b is a sectional view taken along line'6b-6b of FIG. 6a, showing the back escapement means.

Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, the button covering machine 10 includes a rotatable table 12 having four spring-biased shell receiving dies 14 and four springbiased back receiving dies 16 alternately arranged in a circle 18. These dies 14 and 16 may be constructed as disclosed in our pending application entitled Button Covering Dies, Ser. No. 304,401, filed Nov. 7, 1972, now abandoned.

A shell hopper 20 is positioned adjacent the rotatable table 12 on machine support 21. A shell chute 22 is mechanically coupled to the hopper 20 and positioned over the rotatable table 12 to deliver shells 24 to the lower shell receiving dies 14. A pneumatic actuated shell delivery punch 26 is positioned over the end portion 28 of the chute 22 to deliver shells 24 from the chute 22 to the lower shell receiving dies 14 when the lower shell receiving dies 14 are indexed under the end portion 28 of the chute 22.

A back hopper 30 is positioned adjacent the rotatable table 12 on the machine support 21. A back chute 32 is mechanically coupled to the hopper 30 and positioned over the rotatable table 12 to deliver backs 34 to lower back receiving dies 16. A pneumatic actuated back delivery punch 36 is positioned over the end portion 38 of the chute 32 to deliver backs 34 from the chute 32 to the lower back receiving dies 16 when the lower back receiving dies 16 are indexed under the end portion of the chute 32.

The hoppers 20 and 30 are vibrated by motors to transport shells 24 and backs 34 to chutes 22 and 32, respectively. The hopper motors are independently controlled to permit termination of automatic delivery for manual operation of either shells or backs.

Referring also toFIG. 3, a reciprocable ram 40 is positioned above the rotatable table 12 at station A (12 oclock as the table 12 is illustrated in FIG. 2). An upper die 42 comprising a mounting adapter 50,.a movable sleeve 74, and a shank 73 having an end shaped to conform to the button shell may be constructed as disclosed in our aforementioned patent application. The upper die 42 is mechanically coupled to the ram 40 and reciprocates therewith. The movement of the ram 40 is synchronized with the rotational movement of the lower dies 14 and 16 to move the upper die 42 into alternating contact with the lower dies 14 and 16 as they are indexed into position beneath the upper die 42 at station A.

A ram 40 is segmented and includes an upper portion 44 and a lower portion 46. A channel 48 extends through the lower portion 46 and includes an enlarged bore portion 49 to receive the adapter 50 of the upper die 42. The adapter 50 is mechanically coupled to the lower portion 46 by a' set screw 52.

The upper portion 44 also includes a channel 54 to receive a linking rod 56. The linking rod 56 couples the lower portion 46 to the upper portion 44 of the ram 40 and includes a threaded end to receive a threaded nut 60 which abuts against annular stop 62 formed at the junction of the enlarged bore portion 49 of the channel 48 and a reduced diameter portion 64 which is substantially equal to the diameter of the linking rod 56.

The opposite end 66 of the linking rod 56 is positioned in channel 54 and mechanically coupled to the upper portion 44 of the. ram 40 by a set screw 68. The vertical stroke length of the lower portion 46 of the ram 40 is controlled by adjusting the position of the rod 56 in channel 54 and the position of engagement of set screw 68 with the linking rod 56.

The force which the upper die 42 exerts upon the lower dies 14 and is automatically controlled by a resilient, deformable pressure pad or sleeve 70, which may be polyurethane. The resilient pad 70 is concentrically mounted about the linking rod 56 forming a resilient buffer between the upper and lower portions 44 and 46 of the ram 40. The resilient pad 70 is compressible and permits use of the upper die with a range of fabric cover thicknesses without requiring intermittent adjustment by the operator when fabric thickness is varied. Further, as the downward force of the upper die 42 against the lower dies 14 and 16 tends to increase due to misaligned or improperly mounted dies, the resilient pad 70 compresses or deflects to limit the force, preventing damage to misaligned or improperly mounted dies. Also, should the shells or assembled buttons remain lodged in the upper die, deflection of the pad 70 actuates a microswitch 71 to stop the machine 10.

Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4, a fork slide 72 is synchronized with the reciprocating movement of ram 40 and the upper die 42 for insertion between the adapter 50 and movable sleeve 74 of the upper die 42 when the upper die 42 engages a lower shell receiving die 14 to maintain a button retaining recess defined by sleeve and the concave end of the shank 73 held by adapter 50 to receive the fabric covering and shell 24. The fork tines 76 and 78 form a temporary stop between the adapter 50 and movable sleeve 74 to restrict the amount of upward movement of the sleeve 74 along the shank 73.

The fork slide 72 reciprocates horizontally from a slide mount 80 and is actuated by a pneumatic cylinder 86 which is mechanically coupled to the fork slide 72. The pneumatic cylinder includes a double acting piston 88 having its remote end 90 mechanically coupled to the fork slide 72. The movement of the fork slide 72 is controlled by the movement of the piston 88 which is responsive to air from supply line 92 to place the fork slide 72 in engagement with the upper die 42 and air from air supply line 92 to retract the fork slide 72. The air to the air supply lines 92 and 93 is controlled by a solenoid valve (not shown).

Referring to'FIGS. 5 and 5a, the shell delivery chute 22 is shown in greater detail. The chute 22 is in the shape ofa downwardly sloping slide with a bottom portion 94 and cover portion 96. The bottom portion 94 includes a channel 98, which is U-shaped in crosssection, to receive the shells 24 from the hopper 20. The end portion 28 of the chute 22 has an orifice in cover portion 96 to receive the end of punch 26. Axially aligned with the orifice 100 is an orifice 102 in the bottom portion 94 through which the shells 24 are delivered by punch 26. A magnet 104 is positioned adjacent orifice 102 between the-bottom portion 94 and cover portion 96 to retain each shell 24 above the orifice 102 until the punch 26 engages the shell 24 and forces it through the orifice 102 and into the shell receiving die 14. j

The chute 22 also includes a chute support block or flange 106 affixed to its bottom portion 94 by screws (not shown). The flange 106 includes two holes 108, see also FIG. 1, which are aligned with two threaded holes (not shown) in the housing 110 of the machine 10 to provide ease of alignment of the chute end 28 with the rotatable lower dies 14 and 16. Chutes which accommodate different size shells 24 may be readily interchanged and properly aligned with the rotatable lower dies by simply fastening the flange 106 to the housing 110.

Referring to FIGS. 6, 6a and 6b the back delivery chute 32 is shown in greater detail. The chute 32 is in the shape of a downwardly sloping slide with a bottom portion 112 and cover portion 114. The bottom portion 112 includes a channel 116, which is T-shaped in crosssection, to receive the backs 34, which may be clinch prongs, wire eyes or other types of backs, from the hopper 30. The end portion 38 of the chute 32 has an orifice 118 in its cover portion 114 to receive the end of punch 36. Axially aligned with the orifice 118 is an orifice 124 in the bottom portion 112 through which the backs 34 are delivered by the punch 36. A pair of pivotable jaws 122 are positioned adjacent the orifice 124 between the bottom portion 112 and the cover portion 114 to retain each back 34 above the orifice 124 until the punch 36 engages the back 34 and forces it through the orifice 124 and into the back receiving die 16.

The jaws 122 pivot about pins 123 and 125 and are biased toward a closed position by a pair of leaf springs 126 and 128 which are attached to the bottom portion 112 of chute 32 and engage jaw projections 129 and 131. The jaws 122 retain a back 34 at the end portion 38 of the chute 32 until the punch 36 engages the back 34 and forces the jaws 122 to move outwardly (see arrows in FIG. 6b) and open slightly to allow the back 34 to be delivered through the orifice 124 and into the back receiving die 16. The biasing force exerted by the leaf springs 126 and 128 causes the jaws 122 to return to their closed position after the back 34 has passed between the jaws 122 and through orifice 124.

In operation, the machine of the present invention delivers shells 24 to lower dies 14 and backs 34 to lower dies 16 at stations B and C respectively of the rotationally indexing table 18. The operator manually places a fabric disc 172 on each shell 24 in the shell receiving dies 14 as the table indexes past the operator to bring the shell and fabric containing dies 14 to station A.

Station A is aligned with the upper die 42. The ram 40, carrying the upper die 42, and the fork slide 72 are reciprocated to transfer the fabric disc 172 and shell 24 to the button retaining recess of the upper die 42. The table 18 indexes to bring a back containing lower die 16 into alignment with station A and the upper die 42, and the ram 40 again reciprocates to press the fabric disc 172 and shell 24 into assembly with the back 34. The table 18 indexes the lower die 16 to station D, positioning the completed button contained therein under button removal tube 170. A puff of air may be used to eject the completed button from die 16 into the button removal tube 170.

The present invention provides a button covering machine capable of automatic, semi-automatic and manual feeding of shells 24 and backs 34 to rotatable lower dies 14 and 16. In all modes of operation, the machine operator manually positions the fabric covering disc's 172 of FIG. 2 over the shells 24 delivered to the lower dies 14. The machine 10 may be readily modified to accommodate different size shells 24 and backs 34 by simply changing the upper and lower dies 42,. 14, and 16 and by changing the chutes 22 and 32. Advantageously, the chutes 22 and 32 and dies 42, 14, and 16 need not be changed with every size change of shells and wire eyes, but rather the dies 42, 14, and 16, and the chutes 22 and 32 are capable of being used with shells and wire eyes which cover a specific size range. Further, the hoppers and 30 will readily accommodate shells 24 and backs 34 of different sizes.

It should be apparent to those. skilled in the art that various modifications may be made in the present invention without departing from the scope and spirit thereof, as described in the specification and defined in the appended claims.

We claim:

1. Apparatus for assembling buttonshaving a back, a shell and a covering material over the shell, said apparatus comprising:

a reciprocable ram carrying an upper die; a rotatably indexed table having in alternate juxtaposition shell-receiving and back-receiving lower die members; means to deliver shells and backs to their respective lower dies;

said reciprocable ram having upper and lower portions adjustably connected together by linking means and having resilient, deformable buffer means interposed between said upper and lower portions to permit limited relative movement of the upper and lower portions to allow accomodation of a range of covering material thicknesses;

said upper die comprising a central shank member affixed to said ram lower portion and an upper die sleeve member surrounding, and reciprocable with respect to, said shank member;

and means for selectably limiting the relative reciprocation of said upper die sleeve member with respect to said shank member when the rotatable table is indexed to align a shell-receiving lower die member with the upper die member.

2. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said linking means comprises a rod.

3. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein said buffer means comprises a resilient, deformable sleeve surrounding said rod. i

4. The apparatus of claim 3, wherein said resilient, deformable sleeve is polyurethane.

5. The apparatus of claim 3, including a microswitch responsive to excessive deformation of said resilient sleeve to stop said apparatus.

6. The apparatus of claim 3, wherein said means for selectably limiting the relative reciprocation of the upper die sleeve member with respect to the shank member comprises a laterally reciprocable fork slide member.

7. The apparatus of claim 6, wherein said means to deliver shells and backs to their respective lower dies comprises vibratable hoppers and delivery chutes.

8. Apparatus for assembling buttons, said buttons having a back, a shell and a covering material over the shell, said apparatus comprising an upper unit and a lower unit, said upper unit comprising:

a reciprocable ram having an upper portion and a lower portion; an adjustable linking rod connecting said upper and lower portions; a resilient, deformable polyurethane sleeve surrounding said linking rod and interposed between said upper and lower portions of said ram, thereby permitting limited relative movement between said upper and lower portions and allowing accomodation of a range of covering material thicknesses; an upper die carried by said ram lower portion, said upper die including a central shank member affixed to said lower portion and a moveable sleeve member reciprocable with respect to said shank member; and a reciprocable fork slide member for selectably limiting the rela tive reciprocation of the upper die sleeve member with respect to the shank member;

said lower unit comprising a rotatably indexed table having an alternating series of shell-receiving and back-receiving lower dies, means comprising vibrating hoppers and chutes for feeding shells and backs to their respective lower dies, and means for sequentially indexing the shell and back receiving lower dies beneath the upper die member of said upper unit.

UNITED STATES PATENT oFFIcE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION PATENTLNO, i 3, 5 DATED January 7, 1975 "INVENTOR(S) John B. Orlando and Anthony M. Ruggiero It is certified that error appears in theabove-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:

First Page, line 5, Assignee's name is incorrect, "Butter" should be Button Column 1, line 17, after "lower", insert --and--; Column 3, line 26, "15" should be l6-; Column 3, line 49, after "sleeve", insert "bore 75-- Signed and sealed this 20th day of May 1975.;

(SEAL) Attest: I

C. MARSHALL DANN RUTH C. MASON Commissioner of Patents Attesting Officer and Trademarks

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US228233 *Jul 20, 1879Jun 1, 1880 Machine for making buttons
US461649 *Mar 30, 1891Oct 20, 1891 Button-feeding device
US598711 *Apr 24, 1897Feb 8, 1898 ludington
US1152111 *Dec 10, 1914Aug 31, 1915Abraham R LopezButton-making machine.
US2289267 *Aug 13, 1938Jul 7, 1942Universal Button Fastening & BAssembly machine for fastening devices
US3442163 *Dec 8, 1966May 6, 1969C & C Button & Trimming Co IncButton assembling machine
US3548689 *Nov 14, 1968Dec 22, 1970Handy Button Machine CoMachine for making covered buttons
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4532684 *Dec 5, 1983Aug 6, 1985Bagde-A-Minit Ltd.Button assembler
US5267511 *May 2, 1991Dec 7, 1993Waterbury Companies, Inc.Device for pressing buttons by resisting upward movement
US5301402 *Jan 31, 1991Apr 12, 1994Waterbury Companies, Inc.Automated button closing machine
US7490679 *Jun 3, 2004Feb 17, 2009Ykk CorporationButton-attaching device and method of attaching button to upper die of button-attaching device
Classifications
U.S. Classification79/5
International ClassificationA44B1/00, A44B1/12
Cooperative ClassificationA44B1/126
European ClassificationA44B1/12C