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Publication numberUS3887056 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 3, 1975
Filing dateMar 23, 1973
Priority dateMar 23, 1973
Publication numberUS 3887056 A, US 3887056A, US-A-3887056, US3887056 A, US3887056A
InventorsLehmann Jerry Hans
Original AssigneeBurroughs Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Demountable-pluggable tensioning and re-inking ribbon cartridge
US 3887056 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [1 1 Lehmann June 3,1975

[75] Inventor: Jerry Hans Lehmann, Rochester,

[73] Assignee: Burroughs Corporation, Detroit,


[22] Filed: Mar. 23, 1973 [21] Appl. No.: 344,268

[52] US. Cl. 197/168; 197/151; 101/336; 197/171 [51] Int. Cl B4lj 33/10 [58] Field of Search 101/336; 197/151, 171, 197/168 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,755,905 7/1956 Segui 197/168 3,356,202 12/1967 Goff 197/151 3,513,957 5/1970 Ricciardi et a]. 197/151 3,621,968 11/1971 Kondur 197/168 X 3,643,777 2/1972 Anderson et a1. 197/168 X 3,643,779 2/1972 Anderson et al. 197/168 X 3,728,963 4/1973 Dowd 197/151 X FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 29,235 1913 United Kingdom 197/168 OTHER PUBLICATIONS IBM Technical Disclosure Bulletin, Ribbon Cartridge with Brake," Arena et al., Vol. 10, No. 4, Sept. 1967, pp. 484, 485, 197/151.

Primary ExaminerErnest T. Wright, Jr. Attorney, Agent, or FirmCar1 Fissell, Jr.; Kevin R. Peterson; Paul W. Fish [57] ABSTRACT A demountable-pluggable ribbon cartridge having selfcontained adjustable tensioning and re-inking means is provided with a plurality of ribbon inking rollers operable in conjunction with an inking tension roller and a demountable impact receiving printing matrix, the cartridge being removably attachably engagable with the frame of an associated piece of apparatus such that the printing device is operably disposed adjacent to a reciprocably movable anvil, the adjustable selftensioning means of the cartridge serving to hold the ribbon in a taut state in a printing position adjacent to the anvil and over the face of the printing matrix and to hold the ribbon in frictional contact with cylindrical re-inking members carrying on their peripheries a deformable porous pen-inked foam material. The inked ribbon in the form of an endless loop is movably disposed within an interior peripheral portion of the cartridge, the self-tensioning means comprising an opposing pair of members having discontinuous confronting surface portions between which the ribbon is moved.

10 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures DEMOUNTABLE-PLUGGABLE TENSIONING AND RE-INKING RIBBON CARTRIDGE CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS The present invention is related to two patent applications entitled lmproved Incremental Feed Device For Advancing Paper Tape, Record Cards and an Inked Ribbon in a Printer," and Self-Tensioning and Re-lnking Ribbon Cartridge, the former application having been filed on Aug. 3 l, 1972, and assigned Ser. No. 285,2 l and the latter application filed on Oct. 27, [972 and assigned Ser. No. 30l,64l both applications being in the names of Ronald H. Mack and John Bortins and assigned to the assignee of the present inventron.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION A search of the prior art has developed the following US. Pat. Nos: Reissue 27,180, V. Spreter, et al, 2,699,245, G. Hernandez, 2,798,429, F. R. Werner, et al, 2,904,157, H. B. Smith, 2,387,330, C. W. Johnson, 1,547,267, B. M. Shipley, 3,072,053, G. Becker, et al, 3,603,283, F. R. Anderson,

lmpact-type printing devices commonly employ inked ribbons for transferring character images from the printing type to the printable media, such ribbons being variously disposed and operably supported in the area of the printing station and commonly in interposed relationship relative to the printing type and the printable media. Such known printing devices generally provide for the arrangement of the inked ribbon in the area of the printing station with the ends of the ribbon anchored to a pair of ribbon spools which are disposed on either side of the station, the inked ribbon being transferably movable between the two spools by a variety of ribbon feed structures such that a fresh area of the ribbon is moved into printing position for the printing of each character image. These particular inked ribbon arrangements, and ribbon feed devices, therefor, are generally characterized by certain operational disadvantages particularly with respect to ribbon removal and replacement. Additionally, known ribbon feed structures have generally been characterized by certain cost disadvantages, particularly with respect to initial manufacturing costs and to subsequent maintenance costs. Such two-spool inked ribbon arrangements have further been characterized by a lack of suitable and effective re-inking means, further contributing to the frequency and inconvenience of ribbon removal and replacement.

Self-contained ribbon cartridges have also been disclosed in the prior art, such as in the Kondur US. Pat. No. 3,62l ,968 also assigned to the Burroughs Corporation, wherein many of the disadvantages of the twospool ribbon arrangements have been overcome, and wherein internal self-tensioning and re-inking means are provided. Such removably attachable ribbon cartridges are responsive to external ribbon feed means to move the ribbon through a printing position defined thereby. These self-contained ribbon cartridges have generally been characterized, however, by relatively complex internal structures involving a plurality of movable parts such as rotatable rollers and springactuated tensionin g means, thereby adding to their cost of manufacture and maintenance. Known selfcontained ribbon cartridges have further been designed for attachment to the printing device in extrinsic rather than cohabiting relationship to the printing element or elements, thereby contributing little or nothing to the objective of printer compactness.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION A demountable-pluggable ribbon cartridge having self-contained adjustable tensioning and re-inking means is provided with a plurality of ribbon inking rollers operable in conjunction with an inking tension roller and a demountable impact receiving printing matrix, the cartridge being removably attachably engagable with the frame of an associated piece of apparatus such that the printing device is operably disposed adjacent to a reciprocably movable anvil, the adjustable self-tensioning means of the cartridge serving to hold the ribbon in a taut state in a printing position adjacent to the anvil and over the face of the printing matrix and to hold the ribbon in frictional contact with cylindrical re-inking members angled relative to the perpendicular and carrying on their peripheries a deformable porous pre-inked foam material. The inked ribbon in the form of an endless loop is movably disposed within an interior peripheral portion of the cartridge, and braking means is provided comprising an opposing pair of members having discontinuous confronting surface portions between which the ribbon is moved.

It is accordingly an object of the present invention to provide a self-contained pluggably-demountable continually re-inking cartridge.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a self-contained ribbon cartridge that is both compact in size and suitably long lived to avoid the requirement for frequent replacement.

An important aspect of the invention is the provision in a self-contained ribbon cartridge of multiple preinked porous foam inking rollers which provide both drive means and constant inking means.

Another important aspect of the invention is the provision of means integral with the inking cartridge enabling the cartridge to be pluggably mounted and demounted relative to the apparatus with which it is to be associated.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING These and other objects, advantages and aspects of the invention will be more clearly understood from the following description when read in conjunction with the accompanying drawing, in which:

FIG. I is a front elevational view of the novel selftensioning and re-inking ribbon cartridge;

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the cartridge printing device of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of the device of FIG. 1 partially in section illustrating the cartridge pluggably engaged with a continuous form bursting device and illustrating a portion of the drive train therefor;

FIG. 3A is an enlarged sectional detail of a portion of the cartridge plug-in element;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged detail view of the drive train for the cartridge inking device as it might be used in a bursting apparatus; and,

FIG. 5 is a schematic view illustrating the structural angular relationship of the three inking rollers relative to the inking ribbon.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The present invention comprises a novel pluggably demountable continuously automatically inking ribbon cartridge for use with printing apparatus such for example as a signature printing or signing device employed with a continuous forms burster. Such apparatus contemplates the employment of a preformed signature plate or panel of metal or plastic material having the desired symbol, name or inscription preformed thereon, e.g. as by etching of metal or casting or forming or extrusion of plastic. The signature plate, characterized as a matrix printing device, is made to be demountably removable so that name, symbol or inscription changes may be easily and efficiently accommodated. In order that the plate may provide a useful, clear, sharp and distinct image regardless of the number of impressions required to be made, an endless inking belt, tape or ribbon is employed with the invention. A plurality of inking and tensioning rollers are utilized so as to replenish automatically the ribbon ink supply during operation of the signing apparatus. The inking rollers are formed of a porous foam material pre-inked with a suitable supply of ink of a desired color and printing consistency. Means is also provided for adjust' ing the tension on the ribbon since the ribbon tends to stretch laterally and longitudinally during use. In addition, since the ribbon has a tendency to creep slightly or to walk laterally as it progresses through the cartridge a pair of horizontally disposed contiguous inking rollers are angled slightly from the horizontal relative to one another effective trapping the ribbon therebetween and eliminating the creep" or walk of the ribbon.

Referring first to FIG. 1 of the drawing, there is shown a cartridge inking assembly which is illustrated in conjunction with a support member 12, e.g. the wall or frame of an associated piece of equipment such for example as the burster described and claimed in co-pending application Ser. No. 210,737, filed Dec. 22, 1971, now US. Pat. No. 3,794,228 in the names of Richard Colwill et al and entitled Bursting and Separating Apparatus for Continuous Forms," assigned to the same assignee as the present invention. A set of three shafts l4, l6, and 18 are mounted for rotation within the body cavity of the cartridge assembly 10 and are arranged in a triagonal cluster as shown in FIG. 1 for purposes to be explained hereinafter. A cover member 20 illustrated as being transparent in the drawing, in production would more likely be relatively hard opaque plastic or metal stock, encloses the front portion of the cartridge assembly 10 sealing out dust, dirt or other foreign matter.

Roller shaft 14 which comprises the drive shaft for the cartridge assembly 10 is preformed with a square cross section 22 and is adapted to be received within the square cross section opening in the driven gear 24. A transfer gear 26 engagable with gear 24 transfers rotative torque to gear 24 from drive gear 28 secured to shaft 30 of drive motor 32.

Structurally arranged for conjoint rotation within the cartridge assembly 10 are pre-inked porous foam rollers 34, 36, and 38. These rollers 34, 36, and 38 are pre-inked at the time of fabrication and carry sufficient ink material of the color and consistency desired to accommodate the signing requirements of the particular application.

A continuous loop of ribbon material 40 e.g. one and l/l6 inch wide nylon, etc. l2 inches long capable of receiving ink from rollers 34, 36, and 38 is adapted to partially encircle rollers 34 and 38 while roller 36 is adapted to press the ribbon 40 in between the other two rollers 34 and 38 a slight distance as seen in FIG. I. Roller 36 is biased by spring 42 into peripheral engagement with the surface of rollers 34 and 38 and applies a pre-fixed degree of tension to the ribbon 40 as it travels a serpentine path with respect to rollers 34, 36, and 38.

Roller 36 is arranged with its mounting shaft 16 perpendicular or normal to the back frame or wall support member 12. The shafts l4 and 18 of rollers 34 and 38 on the other hand, are slightly canted or angled from the perpendicular 0.005 inch as shown most clearly in the schematic illustration of FIG. 5. This slight tilt from the normal of rollers 34 and 38 in combination with roller 36 causes the ribbon 40 to be securely trapped therebetween so as to prevent any tendency on the part of the ribbon 40 to walk or creep laterally or horizontally as the ribbon 40 passes over rollers 34 and 38.

Demountably secured within cartridge assembly 10 is a matrix signer assembly 44. Assembly 44 includes a demountably replaceable segment or impression producing signature plate member 46 which is or may be secured to a plate holder 48 by means of, for example, epoxy cement. Plate holder 48 is slidably received on a plate supporting structure or member 50 on project ing tangs 52 by means of U-shaped clamp members or ends 54 of plate holder 48. The plate support member 50 is bolted or rigidly secured to the cartridge body while the signature plate member 46 once mounted on the holder 48 is retained in place by means of the cover member 20.

Ribbon 40 is caused to extend across the active, exposed face portion of the signature plate member 46 and is held taut in its passage there across by means of two oppositely disposed guide posts 56 projecting vertically away from the base of the cartridge assembly 10 adjacent to opposite corners of the plate holder 48.

In order to compensate for the fact that the ribbon 40, after a period of use, expands or stretches both laterally and longitudinally, due to the repeated crushing blows from the printing anvil 58, a brake member 60, FIG. 1, is provided through which the ribbon 40 is advanced to the signing area. Brake member 60 comprises a pair of rigid block-like members 60A and 608 the confronting faces of which are shaped as by molding, cutting, casting, etc., so as to provide interengaging irregular lands and grooves or projections and recesses 62 and 64. The two rigid members 60A and 60B are also provided with elongated slots 66 through which attachment bolts 68 project into the base of the cartridge assembly I0 permitting the gap or space between the irregular confronting faces of the two members 60A and 60B to be adjustable. This adjustment compensates for ribbon looseness by creating a desired degree of tightness or drag coefficient on the ribbon 40 effectively maintaining the ribbon 40 in a taut condition as it passes across the face of the signature plate member 46.

As before mentioned, the novel cartridge of the present invention is adapted to be demountably, pluggably received in interengaging relationship with the associated equipment with which it is to be employed. To this end, FIG. 3, attachment studs or bolts 70 project forwardly from the support member 12 of the associated apparatus 71. The forward end of each shank portion of each stud 70 is provided with an individual resilient 0" ring 72 formed of rubber. neoprene or suitable resilient deformable plastic, trapped in a groove 74 in the bolt end. Studs 70 are received within corresponding mating openings or orifices 76 in the cartridge structure as seen more clearly in FIGS. 3 and 3A of the drawing. Circular grooves 78 in each orifice 76 permit the studs 70 to be snapped into place so that the cartridge assembly can be rigidly attached but still demountable from the support member 12.

As most clearly seen in FIG. 3, the cartridge of the present invention is intended as a self-supporting independent compact assembly 10 which, if manufactured economically enough, could be a throw-away" device; that is to say, once the ink has been exhausted from the three inking rollers 34, 36 and 38 the entire cartridge assembly 10 could be discarded to be replaced by a fresh cartridge assembly 10 carrying newly inked ribbon inking rollers 34, 36 and 38.

The illustration of FIG. 1 is largely schematic as is readily apparent since the cartridge as such is not depicted with sidewalls, back and front walls as would in fact be the case in a production item. However, in FIG. 3 there is shown a representative example of a true car tridge 80 similar to what could be manufactured in production. Cartridge 80, as shown, includes a substantially rectangular body shell 82 of suitable dimensional rigidity and size to accommodate the inking mechanism previously herein described. Cover member 84 is secured to the edges of the vertically projecting sidewalls of the cartridge body as by welding, etc. in known fashion or, so as to accommodate changes in signature plates, the cover member 84 may be merely a "snap fit assembly. In FIG. 1 there is illustrated in schematic fashion drive means 86 for driving the anvil 58 toward and away from the ribbon covered signature plate member 46 in the direction of the arrow 88. The illustration of FIG. 3 depicts the cartridge signer operably associated with a Burroughs Corporation burster apparatus 90, apparatus 71 being the upper hold foot carrier member as described and claimed in the burster application Ser. No. 2lO,737 previously referred to herein. The lower hold foot carrier member 92 is or may be constructed to provide a platform 94 for demountably engaging anvil member 96 as by the T-shaped base 98 interengaged in the slot 100. Member 92 is adapted to be driven vertically upwardly and downwardly in the direction of the arrow 102 by means of drive cams and linkages associated with the burster apparatus with which the signer and cartridge assembly is operably associated.

Secured to the main drive of the burster apparatus is a casting 104 provided with an eccentric 106 for attachment to the main drive shaft 108. Casting 104 is connected by means of projection 110 in driving engagement with a toggle link 112 attached for rocking movement to shaft 114. The rightwardly extending end of toggle link 112 is movably secured to the inwardly facing ends of toggle links 116 and 118. The opposite ends of links 116 and 118 are rockable on shafts 120 and 122 respectively. Shaft 122 is fixed in position while shaft 120 is adapted to be movable vertically upwardly and downwardly as indicated by arrow 102.

As seen most clearly in FIG. 3, platform 92 also sup porting the lower hold foot carrier member 134 is provided with a depending portion 124 terminating in a boss 126 which permits member 92 and shaft to be interconnected by means of coupling link 128.

In operation of the device, it is assumed that motor 32 energized from a source of electrical energy designated 3+ in FIG. 1 will be continuously driving the inking ribbon 40 to provide a freshly inked ribbon portion for the signature plate member 46. The burster mechanism is cyclically operated in stop-start fashion whereby the burster hold feet members 132 and 134 are compressed to separate and burst one by one continuous forms 130 such as checks and/or envelopes or letters that are provided to be burst. Assuming that the main drive is energized, the casting 104 will move from the dotted position as shown in FIG. 4 to the full line position causing the platform 94 and of course the burster to present the anvil face of anvil member 96 to the signature plate member 46 now covered by the ribbon 40. As the mechanism is further cycled, the anvil member 96 will cause an impression to be made on form 130 as the form 130 passes through and between the hold feet members 132 and 134 and the signature plate member 46.

There has thus been described a novel automatic ribbon inking system for use with a signing device which in its most useful form is a throw-away unit which can be discarded and replaced after the ribbon 40 and/or the inking rollers 34, 36 and 38 have exhausted their ink supply.

While a particular embodiment of the invention has been shown, it will be understood, of course, that it is not desired that the invention be restricted thereto since modifications may be made, and it is, therefore, contemplated by the appended claims to cover any such modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.

What is claimed is:

l. A demountable continuous re-inking ribbon cartridge comprising:

a base support member,

a signature plate holder including means demountably receiving a signature plate having an impression producing area thereon operably associated therewith so that said signature plate can be replaced at will,

a continuous ribbon for inking said signature plate,

means for continuously inking said ribbon, said inking means being physically arranged to entrap said ribbon constraining the ribbon against lateral movement, and

braking means for said ribbon, including means for maintaining said ribbon in taut condition over the impression producing area of said signature plate whereby said ribbon is caused to weave back and forth prior to entering the impression producing area effectively regulating the tautness of the ribbon.

2. The invention of claim 1 wherein said means demountable receiving said signature plate includes oppositely disposed slidably engagable clamp members operably interengagable with supporting projections enabling said signature plate to be mounted and removed from said cartridge at will.

3. The invention of claim I wherein said braking means includes demountable adjustable members 7 forming an irregular, non-linear pathway for said ribbon.

4. The invention of claim I wherein said means for continuously inking said ribbon includes a triangular cluster of three inking members with one of said inking members being pivotally biased toward the other two inking members to supply tension to the ribbon as the ribbon passes thereover.

5. The invention of claim 4 wherein said cluster of inking members is arranged with two of said inking members angularly offset relative to each other presenting oppositely angled surfaces to said ribbon thereby constraining said ribbon against lateral movement parallel to said offset inking members.

6. The invention of claim 1 wherein said braking means comprises oppositely disposed rigid members having irregularly shaped confronting surfaces to provide a ribbon gap opening.

7. The invention of claim 6 wherein said rigid members are adjustable relative to one another to vary the opening therebetween thus to vary the ribbon gap therebetween and wherein said irregularly shaped confronting surfaces comprise nesting lands and grooves for constraining the ribbon thereby braking the passage of the ribbon therebetween.

8. The invention of claim I wherein said continuous to be mountable and demountable at will.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2755905 *Jun 16, 1953Jul 24, 1956Stenotype Grandjean SaEndless ribbon feeding device for shorth and typewriters
US3356202 *Mar 9, 1967Dec 5, 1967IbmTypewriter ribbon cartridge
US3513957 *Sep 20, 1967May 26, 1970Olivetti & Co SpaInk ribbon cartridge for a typewriter,teleprinter or similar office machines
US3621968 *Jul 15, 1969Nov 23, 1971Burroughs CorpRibbon cartridge with mobius loop in ribbon
US3643777 *Jul 23, 1970Feb 22, 1972Scm CorpTypewriter ribbon cartridge
US3643779 *Dec 14, 1970Feb 22, 1972Scm CorpRibbon mechanism for cartridge supported ribbons
US3728963 *Aug 7, 1970Apr 24, 1973IbmRibbon feed cartridge
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4010839 *Nov 25, 1975Mar 8, 1977Ing. C. Olivetti & C., S.P.A.Cartridge for a ribbon of a typewriter or like office machines
US4042092 *Jul 28, 1975Aug 16, 1977Columbia Ribbon And Manufacturing Co., Inc.Duplicating method
US4083444 *Jul 2, 1976Apr 11, 1978Ing. C. Olivetti & C., S.P.A.Removable cartridge for an inked ribbon and ribbon feed mechanism for printing machines
US4084680 *Jul 5, 1977Apr 18, 1978Xerox CorporationEnhanced underscoring methods and means for automatic typewriter and the like employing hammer-type impact printing mechanism
US4084682 *Dec 22, 1976Apr 18, 1978Ncr Canada Ltd. - Ncr Canada LteeInked ribbon guide member with tracking surfaces thereon
US4091914 *Feb 22, 1977May 30, 1978Porelon, Inc.Wear-activated ribbon reinker
US4126715 *Mar 28, 1977Nov 21, 1978United Recycle, Inc.Method and apparatus for reinking typing ribbon cartridges
US4136614 *Dec 10, 1976Jan 30, 1979Autelca AgLetterpress printing press
US4209261 *Dec 12, 1977Jun 24, 1980Ncr CorporationRibbon cassette for oblique ribbon feeding
US4289413 *Jan 19, 1979Sep 15, 1981Stanley SeplinCartridge and ribbon for use with a single spool stenotype machine
US4390294 *Sep 2, 1980Jun 28, 1983Westates Space-Era Products, Inc. Dba WespacRibbon re-inking machine capable of reloading a variety of types of ribbon cassettes
US4653947 *Mar 5, 1986Mar 31, 1987Echodata CorporationReinking device for ribbon cartridge
US5246298 *Apr 21, 1992Sep 21, 1993Monarch Marking Systems, Inc.Ink ribbon cartridge and installation methods relating thereto
US7028447 *Nov 3, 2004Apr 18, 2006Jvm Co., Ltd.Package paper thermal printer of tablet packing machine
US20050061186 *Nov 4, 2004Mar 24, 2005Engineered Plastics Solution GroupDisposable printing roller
US20050061187 *Nov 4, 2004Mar 24, 2005Engineered Plastics Solution GroupDisposable printing roller
US20050115200 *Nov 3, 2004Jun 2, 2005Jvm Co., Ltd.Package paper thermal printer of tablet packing machine
US20100202856 *Jan 5, 2010Aug 12, 2010Acument Intellectual Properties, LlcIsolator assembly and method of installation
DE2629910A1 *Jul 1, 1976Jan 27, 1977Olivetti & Co SpaAbnehmbare kassette fuer ein farbband und mechanismus zum farbbandantrieb fuer druckmaschinen
U.S. Classification400/196, 400/202.4, 400/235.1, 400/208, 400/248, 101/336, 400/234
International ClassificationB41J32/00
Cooperative ClassificationB41J32/00
European ClassificationB41J32/00
Legal Events
Mar 6, 1989ASAssignment
Effective date: 19890303
Effective date: 19870724
Mar 6, 1989AS02Assignment of assignor's interest
Effective date: 19890303
Mar 6, 1989AS03Merger
Effective date: 19870724
May 20, 1987ASAssignment
Effective date: 19870415
May 20, 1987AS06Security interest
Effective date: 19870415