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Publication numberUS3881717 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 6, 1975
Filing dateOct 1, 1973
Priority dateOct 1, 1973
Publication numberUS 3881717 A, US 3881717A, US-A-3881717, US3881717 A, US3881717A
InventorsDean Bonnie L
Original AssigneeGrable Printing Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Paper sheet dispenser
US 3881717 A
Abstract
An improved mechanism for dispensing single sheets from a stack of paper. The mechanism is specially adapted for use in a wide variety of paper handling machines, such as collating machines, printing machines, duplicating machines, folding machines, envelope stuffing machines, etc. The improved mechanism consists of a support member depending downwardly and rearwardly from a rotatable shaft supported transversely above a stack of paper and spaced vertically therefrom. A free-wheeling dispensing roller is located on the lower end of the support member, the upper end of which is journaled for relative rotation around the rotatable shaft. A driving belt extends between the rotatable shaft and the dispensing roller. Means are provided to periodically selectively rotate the rotatable shaft.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

D United States Patent 11 1 [111 3,881,717 Dean May 6, 1975 1 1 PAPER SHEET DISPENSER Primary ExaminerAllen N. Knowles Assistant ExaminerH. Grant Ska 5 Jr. 75 I :11; L.D ,L t ,K. Fig, 1 men or 0mm ean exmg on y Attorney, Agent, or FirmDrummond, Nelson & Ptak [73] Assignee: Grable Printing Co., Lexington, Ky.

[22] Filed: Oct. 1, 1973 [57} ABSTRACT [21] Appl. No.: 402,040 An improved mechanism for dispensing single sheets from a stack of paper. The mechanism isspecially adapted for use in a wide variety of paper'handling [52] US. Cl 270/58, 271/9 machines, Such as collating machines priming [51] int. Cl B65h 31/02 chines duplicating machines folding machines enve [58] Field of Search ..221/112,114,123,124, l 1 d E 221/130 131 217 218 253 ope stu mg mac mes, etc. e improve mec amsm 271 21 consists of a support member depending downwardly and rearwardly from a rotatable shaft supported transversely above a stack of paper and spaced vertically [56] References Clted therefrom. A free-wheeling dispensing roller is located UNITED STATES PATENTS on the lower end of the support member, the upper 1,028,091 5/1912 Mathews 271/21 and of which is journaled for relative rotation around 2,873,966 2/1959 Lambert 270/53 the rotatable shaft. A driving belt extends between the 3'601'394 8/1971 Lang 271/9 rotatable shaft and the dispensing roller. Means are 3,773,316 11/1973 Stemmele 271/22 provided to periodically selectively rotate the rotatable shaft.

2 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures PAPER SHEET DISPENSER This invention relates to improved apparatus for selectively dispensing a single sheet of paper from a vertical stack of a plurality of said sheets.

More particularly, the invention concerns an improved apparatus for dispensing single sheets of paper which is particularly useful in a wide variety of paper handling machines, such as collating machines, printing machines, duplicating machines, folding machines, envelope stuffing machines, etc.

Even more specifically, the invention concerns an improved collating machine of the type having a plurality of paper storage stations, each station being serviced by a dispensing roller which periodically withdraws single sheets from each stack in predetermined sequence, and discharges them onto a conveyor to form packets, each sheet of the packet being assembled in the predetermined sequence and in registry.

ln yet another further and more specific respect, the invention relates to a collating machine of the general type disclosed in issued US. Pat. Nos. 2,873,966 to Lambert and 2,986,391 to Walker, having improved dispenser rollers and an improved mechanism to activate the dispenser rollers.

In still another aspect, the invention relates to an improved collating machine having a lower power requirement because of reduced frictional losses in the operative mechanism.

In a still further aspect, the invention relates to an improved collating machine which functions with increased accuracy to substantially reduce collating errors in the form of either missing sheets or so-called doubles.

The general type of collating machine described in US. Pat. Nos. 2,873,966 to Lambert and 2,986,391 to Walker has achieved fairly wide commerical acceptance in the several years since it was introduced to the market. Such machines constituted a distinct improvement over the prior art and function properly under most service conditions. However, these machines do require an inordinately large electrical motor or other power source to drive their operative mechanisms. This large power requirement is primarily due to frictional losses in the lever-link apparatus which drives the paper dispensing rollers. Additionally, after extensive use, the pivotal connections between the links and levers become loose due to mechanical wear. This wear introduces significant lost motion in the apparatus, leading to loss of proper synchronization among the dispensing rollers which, in turn, leads to collating er rors, either missing sheets or doubles. Finally, in the prior art machines described above, the dispensing rollers are arranged to bear on the top sheet of each stack and to sequentially push individual sheets off the top of their respective stacks and onto the collecting conveyor. This pushing mechanism tends to buckle the sheets as they are dispensed from their individual stacks, again leading to collating errors, principally doubles.

It would be highly desirable to provide improvements in collating machines of the type described above which lead to reduced power requirements, increased long-term mechanical reliability and overall reduction in collating errors.

As will be apparent to those skilled in the art, the disadvantages described above of prior art collating machines are also present in varying degree in other types of paper handling machines, such as printing machines, duplicating machines, folding machines, envelope stuffing machines, etc., and improvement in the apparatus for dispensing single sheets of paper in such other types of machines would be similarly desirable.

Accordingly, it is the principal object of the present invention to provide improved apparatus for selectively dispensing single sheets of paper from a vertical stack of a plurality of said sheets.

Another principal object of the invention is to provide improved apparatus of the type described which is usefully employed in a wide variety of paper handling machines.

Another and more specific object of the present invention is to provide an improved collating machine.

Still another object of the invention is to provide an improved collating machine of the type having a plurality of paper storage stations, each of which is serviced by a dispensing roller which periodically withdraws single sheets from each station in predetermined sequence and discharges them onto a conveyor to form finished collated packets.

Yet another object of the invention is to provide improvements in the general type of collating machine described in US. Pat. Nos. 2,873,966 to Lambert and 2,986,391 to Walker.

Still another and further object of the invention is to provide an improved collating machine having increased long-term mechanical reliability, reduced power requirements and improved collating accuracy.

These and other further and more specific objects and advantages of the invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description and the drawings. For the purpose of illustrating the invention, the detailed description set forth below and the drawings depict the invention as em- IN THE DRAWINGS:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an improved collating machine which includes the improved paper dispensing apparatus of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a sectional elevation view of the improved collating machine-of FIG. 1, taken along section line 22 of FIG. 1, illustrating details of the improved paper dispenser at one of the paper storage stations and associated activating mechanism;

FIG. 3 is a side elevation view of the collating machine of FIG. 1 showing other details of the paper dispenser activating mechanism;

FIG. 4 is a larger scale perspective view of a portion of the collating machine of FIG. 1 illustrating further details of the improved paper dispenser at one of the storage stations and associated drive mechanism therefor; and I FIG. 5 is a schematic drawing illustrating further details of the activating mechanism which sequentially activates the paper dispensing rollers.

Briefly, in accordance with my invention, I provide apparatus for selectively dispensing a single sheet of paper from a stack of plurality of said sheets. Said apparatus comprises a frame, tray means on the frame defining a paper stack storage station having a forward end and a rearward end. A rotatable shaft is journaled in the frame transversely of the tray means and spaced therefrom. A dispensing-roller support member extends toward the tray means from the rotatable shaft and rearwardly toward the rearward end thereof. The shaft is journaled for rotation within one end of the support member. Free-wheeling dispenser rollers are rotatably mounted on the other and free end of the support member. The rollers are adapted to continuously bear upon and frictionally engage the top sheet of paper of a paper stack in the storage station. A driving belt extends between the rotatable shaft and the dispensing roller for periodically driving the roller in a rotational direction to selectively pull the top sheet on the paper stack forwardly and dispense it forwardly from the storage station, all in response to rotation of the rotatable shaft. Means are provided for periodically selectively rotating the transverse rotatable shaft.

In accordance with the presently preferred embodiment of my invention, 1 provide improvements in prior art collating machines of the general type described in US. Pat. Nos. 2,873,966 to Lambert and 2,986,391 to Walker. Such prior art collating machine generally includes a frame, a plurality of paper stack storage stations mounted on the frame, dispensing roller means associated with each storage station for periodically dispensing single sheets of paper from the forward end thereof, an activating mechanism carried by the frame for sequentially driving each of the dispensing rollers to dispense the single sheets forwardly from the storage stations in a predetermined sequence, a conveyor on the frame for gathering the single sheets sequentially dispensed forwardly from the storage stations and assembling them into packets and power means to drive the activating mechanism and the conveyor.

According to the improvements included in the preferred embodiment of the present invention, in the general type of machine described above, I provide improved paper dispensing roller means and an improved activating mechanism therefor in combination with the elements of a paper collating machine. The improved roller-activating mechanism includes, in combination, a rotatable shaft journaled in the frame and supported transversely and spaced above each of the storage stations, a dispensing-roller support member depending rearwardly from each rotatable shaft, each shaft being journaled for rotation within the upper end of the support member depending therefrom, and a belt-driven free-wheeling dispensing roller which is rotatably mounted on the bottom end of each support member, positioned to continuously bear upon the top sheet of paper in the paper stack at each storage station. Driving belt means are provided for periodically driving each dispensing roller in a rotational direction to pull the top sheet on each stack forwardly therefrom and dispense it forwardly from its storage station, all in response to periodic rotation of the transverse rotatable shaft located above each station. A driven gear is fixed upon the end of each of the rotatable shafts. A plurality of rotatable sector gears carried on an axle journaled in the frame drive the driven gears on each of the rotatable shafts, to periodically rotate each shaft in response to continuous rotation of the sector gears. Each sector gear is provided with a coaxially rotatable sprocket gear. Drive chain means carried on the frame engage each sprocket gear and is, itself, driven by power means.

Turning now to the drawings which, for illustrative purposes, depict the presently preferred embodiment of the invention and in which like reference characters identify corresponding parts in the several views, FIG. 1 is a perspective view showing the general arrangement of the elements. A frame consisting of horizontal members 11 and vertical members 12 supports a plurality of tray members 13 arranged in stair-stepped relation, which function as storage stations for individual stacks of paper. The upper trays are omitted for purposes of clarity. If desired, the frame 11-12 may be further provided with suitable support legs 14 and associated horizontal members 15 mounted on casters 16 to raise the entire apparatus to convenient working height and to provide for moving the machine within an office. Individual paper sheets are discharged sequentially from the storage station trays 13 toward a continuously driven endless belt 17 carried on idler rollers (not shown) which are journaled into the inclined plane member 18. The belt 17 is continuously driven in the direction of the arrow A. A second pressure belt 19 is provided which is continuously driven in the direction of the arrow B.

A rotatable shaft 21 is journaled at each end for rotation in the side frame members 22. Each rotatable shaft 21 is carried transversely across and spaced above each of the paper stack storage trays 13. A dispensing-roller support member 23 depends downwardly and rearwardly from each of the rotatable shafts 21, the shaft 21 being journaled for rotation within the respective upper ends of each of the roller support members 23. A pair of dispenser rollers 24 are carried on axles 25 journaled in the lower ends of each respective roller support member 23. Endless drive belts 26 extend between pulleys 27 fixed to each respective rotatable shaft 21 and a free-wheeling clutch 28 carried on each roller axle 25. The free-wheeling clutch 28 consists of a drum with an internal ratchet system which allows the rollers 24 to continue rotating in the direction of the arrow C even though no power is applied through the rotatable shaft 21 and drive belt 26. As will appear later, this feature is necessary to insure that a sheet of paper dispensed by the rotation of the rollers 24 will be smoothly removed from the stack storage station after it is picked up by the conveyor belt 17.

A conveyor roller 29 is supported for rotation on a transverse shaft 31 carried on the ends of support members 32, the rear ends of which are provided with bushings 33 within which the shaft 21 is freely rotatable. The weight of the conveyor roller 29, transverse shaft 31 and supports 32 causes the conveyor roller 29 to bear downwardly, pressing individual sheets of paper discharged from each storage station 13 against the endless conveyor belt 17.

Each rotatable shaft 21 carries a driven gear 34 affixed to corresponding outer ends thereof. Each of the gears 34 is driven, in turn, by a mating sector gear 35. Each sector gear 35 is provided with a coaxially mounted driving sprocket 36, the teeth of which engage a continuously driven endless drive chain 37 carried on an idler bar 38 affixed to side frame member 22 by means of brackets 39.

In operation, the collating device described above the arrow D and engages the teeth 'ofsprockets 36 causing each sector gear 35 to continuously rotate in the direction of the'arrows E. ,As the teeth on each sector gear 35 engage the driven gears 34 on likeends of each rotatable shaft 21, the rotatable shafts 21 are sequentially rotated in the direction of the arrows F. Rotation of the shafts 21 causes movement of the drive belts 26 in the direction indicated by the arrows G, inducing rotation of the dispensing rollers 24 in the direction of the arrow C. The combination of the rotation of the rollers 24 and the combined weight of each assembly (consisting of elements 24, 25, 28 and 23) bearing on the top sheet 41 (FIG. 2) of a stack of paper sheets 42 at each storage station 13 causes the top sheet 41 to be discharged forwardly in the direction of the arrow H toward the conveyor belt 17. As the forward end of the sheet 41 passes between the conveyor roller 29 and the conveyor belt 17, the dispensing rollers 24 commence free wheeling so as to permit smooth and positive withdrawal of the sheet 41 from the stack 42. The sheets are sequentially removed from the storage stations 13, commencing at the bottom-most of the stations 13. The removed sheets are moved upwardly by the conveyor belt 17, picking up the sheets discharged from the next highest storage station 13. Finally, at the top of the inclined plane 18, the packets of collated sheets pass and are sandwiched between the conveyor 17 and the pressure belt 19 and each packet is deposited on the shelf 43 of a collector section, the details of which are not shown.

The exact location of the electric motor or other power means which is used to operate the apparatus described above and the belt, gear or other suitable power transfer means which connect the motor to the operative elements are not shown so as to avoid complication of the drawings. However, for example, the

motor and power transfer elements can be suitably arranged as shown in the issued patents to Walker and Lambert, supra.

As will be observed, each single sheet is positively withdrawn from the stack at each storage station by the action of the rotating dispenser rollers 24 (which are suitably provided with a serrated or other high friction surface). Furthermore, the elements of the apparatus which activate the dispensing rollers do not undergo reciprocal motion and are less susceptible to wear than a lever-link system as described in the Walker and Lambert patents. These features contribute substantially to the collating accuracy of the machine and effect a substantial reduction in the power required to drive the movable elements, all leading to a less expensive machine having increased overall long-term reliability and accuracy.

Having described my invention in such terms as to enable those persons skilled in the art to which it pertains to understand and practice it, and having identified the presently preferred embodiment thereof, I claim:

1. In a collating machine for withdrawing single sheets of paper from a plurality of stacks thereof and for assembling said withdrawn sheets in registry to form a plurality of packets, the sheets in each packet being assembled in a predetermined sequence, said collating machine having a frame, 4 v

a plurality of paper stack storage stations mounted on 1' said frame,

dispensing roller means associated with each storage station for periodically dispensing single sheets of paper from the forward end thereof,

an activating mechanism carried by said frame forsequentially driving each of said dispensing roller means to' dispense said single sheets forwardly from said storage stations in a predetermined sequence,

conveyor means on said frame for gathering said single sheets of paper sequentially dispensed forwardly from said storage stations and assembling them into said packets, and

power means to drive said activating mechanism and conveyor means,

the improved dispensing roller means and activating mechanism therefor, comprising, in combination:

a. a rotatable shaft journaledv in said frame and supported transversely and spaced above each said storage station;

b. a dispensing-roller support member depending rearwardly from said rotatable shaft, said shaft being journaled for rotation within the upper end of said support member;

c. a belt-driven free-wheeling dispensing roller rotatably mounted on the bottom end of said support member, positioned to continuously bear upon the top sheet of paper in the paper stack in said storage station;

(1. driving belt means for periodically driving said dispensing roller in a rotational direction to pull said top sheet forwardly from said stack and dispense it forwardly from said storage station, in response to periodic rotation of said transverse rotatable shaft;

e. a driven gear fixed upon said rotatable shaft;

f. rotatable sector gear means carried on said frame, the teeth of which are engageable with said driven gear on said rotatable shaft, to periodically rotate said shaft in response to continuous rotation of said sector gear means;

g. sprocket gear means coaxially rotatable with said sector gear means; and

h. drive chain means carried on said frame, engageable with said sprocket gear means and continuously driven by said power means.

2. Apparatus for selectively dispensing a single sheet of paper from a stack of a plurality of said sheets, said apparatus comprising:

a. a frame;

b. tray means on said frame defining a paper stack storage station having a forward dispensing end and a rearward end;

0. a rotatable shaft journaled in said frame transversely of said tray means and spaced therefrom;

d. a dispensing-roller support member extending toward said tray means from said rotatable shaft and rearwardly toward the rearward end of said tray means, said shaft being journaled for rotation within one end of said support member;

e. free-wheeling dispenser roller means rotatably mounted on the other free end of said support member, adapted to continuously bear upon and frictionally engage the top sheet of paper of a paper stack in said storage station;

f. driving belt means extending between said rotatable shaft and said dispensing roller for periodically said shaft in response to continuous rotation of said sector gear means;

. sprocket gear means coaxially rotatable with said sector gear means; and

. drive chain means carried on said frame, engageable with said sprocket gear means and continu ously driven by a power means.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1028091 *Nov 27, 1911May 28, 1912Thomas A MatthewsStationery-cabinet.
US2873966 *Sep 27, 1956Feb 17, 1959Halvorsen Products Mfg CompanyActuating mechanism for collating machine
US3601394 *Jul 3, 1969Aug 24, 1971Xerox CorpSheet retaining apparatus
US3773316 *May 22, 1972Nov 20, 1973Xerox CorpSheet feeder drive mechanism
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4418903 *Dec 31, 1981Dec 6, 1983Savin CorporationLarge capacity combination magazine and sheet feeder for copying machines
US5164906 *Nov 20, 1990Nov 17, 1992Pitney Bowes Inc.Submodule feeder arrangement for an inserter
US5499806 *Mar 29, 1994Mar 19, 1996Bourg; Christian-P.Collating machine
US5644494 *Dec 13, 1994Jul 1, 1997Check Technology CorporationPrinting system
US5696690 *Jun 7, 1995Dec 9, 1997Check Technology CorporationSheet stacking apparatus
US5748483 *Mar 6, 1995May 5, 1998Check Technology CorporationPrinting system
US5790408 *Jun 7, 1995Aug 4, 1998Check Technology CorporationError recovery in a printing system
US5867393 *Sep 24, 1997Feb 2, 1999Check Technology CorporationDocument handling apparatus
US5917727 *Sep 8, 1997Jun 29, 1999Check Technology CorporationSheet registration system
US7608033 *Oct 8, 2008Oct 27, 2009Schober GmbH Werkzeung- und MaschinenbauRotary cutting apparatus comprising a placing system for the orderly sorting of cuts
Classifications
U.S. Classification270/58.23, 271/9.11, 271/9.2, 271/9.13
International ClassificationB65H39/00, B65H39/042
Cooperative ClassificationB65H39/042
European ClassificationB65H39/042