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Publication numberUS3901148 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 26, 1975
Filing dateOct 1, 1973
Priority dateOct 5, 1972
Also published asDE2349761A1
Publication numberUS 3901148 A, US 3901148A, US-A-3901148, US3901148 A, US3901148A
InventorsClark Thomas Henry
Original AssigneeClark Thomas Henry
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Machine for printing labels
US 3901148 A
Abstract
A printing machine for reproducing on blank labels information embossed on a flexible printing plate, the machine having a pivotal printing head with an arcuate support surface against which the printing plate is releasably held, printing being effected by means of a segmented impression cylinder co-operating with said head and having a camlike profile, each rotation of the segmented impression cylinder pivoting the head and feeding one of a series of labels through the machine by a rolling-press action, the segmented impression cylinder and head being arranged in such a manner that only the outwardly-projecting embossed information on the printing plate is reproduced.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

[ Aug. 26, 1975 United States Patent 1 Clark Moos............. Stommel et al Miller et a1. Roscr.............

[ 1 pp 402,242 Primary Examiner-Edgar Sr Burr Assistant Examiner-Paul .1 Hirsch 30 Foreign Application Priority Data Attorney Agent or Firm-0W1 Behr Oct. 5. 1972 United Kingdom............,.. 460(15/72 [57] ABSTRACT A printing machine for reproducing on blank labels information embossed on a flexible printing plate, the machine having a pivotal printing head with an arcu- [51] Int. Cl.....

ate support surface against which the printing plate is releasably held, printing being effected by means of a 3 N ,2 6 5 3 82 y u ,0 19 5 3 1E M2 \1 O l 7 0 4 "3 2 M m22 r a e8 2 n 1 0 1 .w F 1. O0 5 segmented impression cylinder co-operating with said head and having a camlike profile, each rotation of [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS the segmented impression cylinder pivoting the head 38 m m rm m m m w hwwm tUO r. n e S hm mm m tgdgd u S e g IS n .l en F b aC a e g 1 r n aO :l O r..l W o p a Sfinw r. .wwd h D fl m zo Sd s aeawn S ret.l m fp um 0% 0.1 a d r. .l. mr mm t 0d m 3 g em t .m m n nt w yan fe mo d.m r. m nh. e acmnm 100X115X m mww n 4 44 HOHHUOR w.Owm ""0" mm u dncanm m nO CC.1oL AHwRDRo 744 57 0 34566 9999999 HHHHHHH 0 22242 52530000 4360755 8495702 600467000 2233 PATENTEDAUBZBIQYE 3,901,148

SHEET 2 [IF 2 MACHINE FOR PRINTING LABELS This invention relates to printing machines, and more particularly to such machines adapted to reproduce information embossed on a printing plate.

Certain administrative bodies, for example, hospital boards, as well as industrialists often find the necessity to provide a certain number of labels each bearing identical information. The number of such labels may not be sufficient to warrant the employment of intricate printing apparatus, but may be too great for manual reproduction by, for example, a typewriter.

Printing machines suitable for printing labels com monly incorporate a printing drum on which is mounted in loose type the information to be reproduced, a cylindrical pressure roller co-operating with said drum to feed labels therebetween and effect said reproduction. Clearly changing of the information to be reproduced can be a complex and time-consuming procedure, and the information cannot be stored ready for further use.

The reproduction on labels of information embossed on a flat plate, for example in the addressing and creditcard fields, is now well-established, this reproduction being achieved either by a stamping action or by running a pressure roller over the stationary flat plate.

In neither case are the labels automatically fed through the machine by the printing mechanism thereof, a supplementary feed mechanism, not normally supplied with a machine, being necessary.

According to the present invention there is provided a printing machine for reproducing information embossed on a flexible printing plate, the machine comprising a pivotally mounted printing head having an arcuate support surface, holding means for releasably securing the printing plate on, to conform with, said arcuate support surface, and a segmented impression cylinder the transverse section through which includes an increased-diameter printing portion having an arcuate extent corresponding substantially with that of the support surface, rotation of the segmented impression cylinder bringing the increased diameter printing portion thereof towards the embossed surface of the printing plate to pivot the head and traverse the label in a rolling-press action, thereby, in use, to feed a series of blank labels and printing ribbon between the rotating segmented impression cylinder and pivoting head, the information on the printing plate being imprinted consecutively on each blank label, the machine further comprising spacer means for ensuring that, in use, the increased-diameter printing portion of the segmented impression cylinder effects reproduction of only the outwardly-projecting embossed information on the printing plate.

The spacer means may comprise a pair of spacer members, conveniently in the form of spring clips, located between the segmented impression cylinder and the printing head and adapted to co-operate each with one of a pair of opposed outer regions of a rigid material on the increased-diameter printing portion of the segmented impression cylinder, engagement of said outer regions and spacer members determining the limit of radial movement of the printing portion of the segmented impression cylinder towards the printing head, said movement being such as to ensure that, in use, said printing portion effects reproduction of only the outwardly-projecting embossed information on the printing plate.

Alternatively the spacer means may comprise a pair of outer regions of the segmented impression cylinder, one to each side of the printing portion of said segmented impression cylinder, said regions being of a rigid material and of diameter greater than that of the increased-diameter portion of the segmented impression cylinder and being adapted to engage with the arcuate support surface of the printing head to determine the limit of radial movement of the printing portion of the segmented impression cylinder towards the printing head, said movement again being such as to ensure that, in use, said printing portion effects reproduction of only the outwardly-projecting embossed information on the printing plate.

Preferably the holding means comprise a pair of lip members extending one along the leading edge and one along the trailing edge of the arcuate support surface, said lip members being resiliently biased into engagement with said surface but being movable away therefrom to permit the printing plate to be inserted and removed from between the support surface and said lip members.

By way of example only, an embodiment of the invention will now be described in greater detail with reference to the accompanying drawings of which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a printing machine according to the invention with part of a side wall shown dotted to reveal the internal mechanism, and

FIGS. 2 and 3 are side views of the printing head of the machine of FIG. 1 with the holding means thereof closed and released respectively.

Referring to the drawings, the machine comprises a base 2 and two opposed, upstanding sidewalls 4 part of the front one of which (as seen in FIG. 1) is cut away to reveal the internal mechanism. This mechanism comprises a printing head indicated generally at 6 and including a block 8 having an arcuate support surface 10 formed thereon. The head 6 is mounted to be pivotable on a shaft 12 extending between the walls 4 of the machine, the holes in said walls receiving the shaft being of size to permit slight, substantially vertical movement of the head and shaft therein for reasons to be detailed below.

A substantially inverted U-section saddle assembly, indicated generally at 14, extends round three sides of the block 8 and includes a pair of end members 16. A pair of elongate lip members 18, 20 are secured to, to extend between, the two end members 16, one along the leading edge and one along the trailing edge respectively of the block 8. A pair of coil springs 22, one at each end of the head 6, extend over a sleeve 24 on the shaft 12 to react between the opposed legs of each end member 16 thereby to bias the lip members 18, 20 into engagement with the arcuate support surface 10 of the block 8 as seen in FIGS. 1 and 2. In this rest position of the head 6 there is a space between the upper surface of the block 8 and the saddle assembly.

The lip members 18, 20 can be moved away from the surface 10, to permit the insertion into the machine of a printing plate 26 (FIG. 3) on which has been embossed, for example by typing, information to be reproduced. The printing plate is of a thin flexible material, for example metal foil or a plastics material, the lip members 18, 20 engaging with the edges of the label to hold said label against, to conform with, the arcuate surface 10. Movement of the lip members 18, 20 is achieved by means of a cam arrangement including a rotatable shaft 28 extending between the opposed sidewalls 4 and to one end of which is secured a handle 30. Mounted on, to be rotatable with, the shaft 28 are a pair of lugs 32, a pair of pins 34, 36 extending between, to interconnect, said lugs. Formed in the upper surface of each of the end members 16 of the saddle assembly 14 are a pair of arcuate grooves 38, 40.

The arrangement is such that, on initial depression of the handle 30, the pin 34 engages in the groove 38 (see FIG. 2), further depression of the handle 30 causing the head 6 to rotate in a clockwise direction (as seen in FIG. 2) on its shaft 12. Continued depression of the handle 30 subsequently brings the pin 36 into engagement with the groove 40, resulting in further rotation of the head 6 in conjunction with, because of the distance of the pin 36 from the shaft 28, a downward movement of the saddle assembly 14 towards the block 8 against the bias of the springs 22. In the released position, illustrated in FIG. 3 and achieved by rotating the handle 30 through 90 from the rest position of FIG. 2, the block 8 is substantially vertical and the saddle assembly 14 is completely depressed to provide a space between the arcuate support surface of the block 8 and the lip members 18, for the insertion therein of the printing plate 26.

The springs 22, on release of the handle 30, return the saddle assembly to the position illustrated in FIG. 2. The head 6 is itself resiliently biased into the illustrated rest position of FIGS. 1 and 2 by a coil spring 42 reacting between a sidewall 4 and one end of a rigid lever 44, the other end of said lever being pivotally attached at 46 to the head 6. The rear end of said lever, adjacent the spring 42, is slotted at 48 to receive a fixed pin 50, the rest position of the head 6 being accurately determined by location of said pin 50 in a detent 52 in the slot 48.

A segmented impression cylinder 54 is mounted below the head 6 for rotation with a shaft 56, said segmented impression cylinder including an increaseddiameter portion 58 the arcuate extent of which corresponds substantially with that of the printing plate 26. The portion 58 has a central, resilient printing region 60 to each side of which is formed an end region 62 of unyielding material such as nylon.

On rotation of the segmented impression cylinder 54 in an anticlockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 1, the leading edge of the portion 58 thereof engages with the leading edge of the arcuate support surface 10 of the head 6, continued rotation of the segmented impression cylinder 54 resulting in pivoting of the head 6, from the illustrated rest position against the bias of the spring 42, in a clockwise direction about the shaft 12, the portion 58 of the segmented impression cylinder 54 traversing the full arcuate extent of the surface 10 in a rolling press or mangle action.

In the fully displaced position of the head 6, the lever 44 has moved so that the pin 50 is adjacent the rear end of the slot 48. As the increased-diameter portion 58 of the segmented impression cylinder 54 breaks contact with the head 6, the spring 42 biases said head back to its rest position, the pin 50 engaging in the detent 52 to prevent undesired oscillation of the head as it returns to said rest position.

Mounted adjacent the rear of the machine is a roll of self-adhesive labels 64 on a backing strip 66. The roll is fed, by way of guide rollers such as 68, 70, to pass between the printing plate 26 when located in the head 6 and the segmented impression cylinder 54. A small gap exists on the backing strip between adjacent labels, the roll of labels therefore tending to bend along this gap. The two rollers 68, are spaced apart to coincide each with a gap, thus effectively acting as detents to locate a label therebetween. With a label so located between said rollers, a further label is located in the printing position.

Carbon ribbon 72 from a reel 74 passes over the saddle assembly 14, between the printing plate 26 and labels 64 onto a take-up roller 76.

On operation of the machine, a label 64 is fed between the printing plate 26 on the head 6 and the segmented impression cylinder 54 by virtue of the pressure therebetween, and the information on said printing plate is transferred onto the blank label by means of the carbon ribbon 72. Each rotation of the segmented impression cylinder 54 results in the printing of a label 64, a ratchet arrangement (not shown) being provided to advance the carbon ribbon by a small amount on each rotation of the segmented impression cylinder 54.

It is desirable to eliminate the reproduction of other than the embossed information on the printing plate 26, i.e. to prevent any background smudging on the labels 64. The invention ensures this by providing a pair of steel strips 78, one to each end of the head 6 and conforming with the arcuate surface 10 of the block 8. Each strip 78 extends between the opposed legs of one of the end members 16 of the saddle assembly, these end members 16 additionally serving as guides for the ribbon 70 as it passes over the head 6. The strips 78 are located to co-operate each with one of the unyielding regions 62 of the segmented impression cylinder 54, and are of thickness such that, on rotation of the segmented impression cylinder 54 to bring the regions 62 into engagement with the arcuate strips 78, the printing region 60 is located such as to reproduce only the outwardly projecting embossed information on the printing plate 26, pressurised contact of the carbon ribbon 70 with the background of said printing plate 26 being prevented.

In an alternative arrangement, the necessary gap between the resilient printing region 60 of the segmented impression cylinder 54 and the arcuate support surface 10 of the head 6 is achieved by dispensing with the spring strips 78 and further increasing the diameter of the unyielding regions 62 of the segmented impression cylinder 54 by an appropriate amount, said regions then engaging with the outer regions of the printing plate to determine the precise radial position of the printing region 60.

The mounting of the head 6 is such as to permit slight yielding thereof to permit the use of labels 64 of varying thickness, while the carbon ribbon 70 could be replaced by any suitable ink-impregnated ribbon fabric.

The sidewalls 4 are slotted as shown to permit the printing of larger documents when the roll of labels is withdrawn.

Thus the invention enables rotary printing of a series of labels from a flexible embossed printing plate, there being a specific beginning and end to the printing of each label because of the raised nature of the printing segmented impression cylinder, no background smudging and continuous line contact during the printing process. This can be compared with the less satisfactory area contact in stamping-type printing processes.

The machine may be operated automatically by means of, for example, an electric motor, or manually operated. The machine can include automatic means to enable a chosen number of labels to be printed after pre-setting of a selector arrangement.

Clearly a number of modifications to the illustrated machine could be made without departing from the scope of the basic invention which relates to the consecutive reproduction on a series of labels of information on a flexible printing plate by rotary means and without any background smudging.

I claim:

1. A printing machine for reproducing information embossed on a flexible printing plate, the machine comprising a pivotally mounted printing head including a printing block on which is formed on arcuate support surface having a leading and a trailing edge and holding means for releasably securing the printing plate on, to conform with, said arcuate support surface, said holding means including a saddle member mounted on the printing block and carrying a pair of lip members extending one along said leading edge and one along said trailing edge, the saddle member being movable relative to the block between a rest position in which the lip members are resiliently biased into engagement with the support surface and a displaced position in which the lip members are spaced from the support surface whereby the printing plate can be inserted and removed from between the support surface and the lip members, the machine further comprising a segmented impression cylinder the transverse section through which includes an increased-diameter printing portion having an arcuate extent corresponding substantially with that of the support surface, a printing ribbon passing between the head and the impression cylinder, and a plurality of labels, rotation of the impression cylinder causing the increased diameter portion thereof to traverse the arcuate extent of the support surface and thereby feed the labels consecutively between said impression cylinder and the pivoting head and imprint on said labels, by means of said ribbon, the information on the printing plate, spacer means between the head and the impression cylinder ensuring that only the outwardly-projecting embossed portion of the printing plate is reproduced.

2. A printing machine as claimed in claim 1 in which a pair of opposed outer regions of an unyielding material are provided on the increased-diameter printing portion of the impression cylinder, the spacer means comprising a pair of spacer members located between the impression cylinder and the printing block and adapted to co-operate each with one of said outer regions, engagement of said outer regions and spacer members determining the limit of radial movement of the printing portion of the impression cylinder towards the printing block, said movement being such as to ensure that said printing portion effects reproduction of only the outwardly-projecting embossed information on the printing plate.

3. A printing machine as claimed in claim 2 in which the spacer members comprise a pair of spring strips secured one to each side of, to extend across the arcuate support surface of the printing block.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US868241 *Jan 14, 1907Oct 15, 1907John C A AndersonTympan-bale.
US1084435 *Sep 27, 1913Jan 13, 1914Fulton Bag And Cotton Mills CoApparatus for marking warp-threads.
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US2265005 *Aug 16, 1940Dec 2, 1941 Printing mechanism
US2577073 *Sep 27, 1947Dec 4, 1951Davidson CorpPlate clamp means
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US3302558 *Apr 12, 1965Feb 7, 1967Hallmark CardsEmbossing apparatus
US3548747 *Dec 5, 1968Dec 22, 1970American Bank Note CoWeb-fed rotary printing press
US3603256 *Jul 8, 1968Sep 7, 1971Albert SchnellpressenDevice for fixing form saddles on the rotary press form cylinder
US3636866 *Jul 18, 1969Jan 25, 1972Bieri HansEmbossing press including an arcuate oscillating dieholder
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US3735700 *Feb 28, 1972May 29, 1973Weber Marking Systems IncTire ring drive for label printers
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4476149 *Aug 9, 1982Oct 9, 1984Boehringer Mannheim GmbhProcess for the production of an analysis test strip
US4592893 *May 8, 1984Jun 3, 1986Boehringer Mannheim GmbhAnalysis test strip
US6745691 *Nov 22, 2002Jun 8, 2004Harrison HuangInk supplying device for tape dispenser having a printing wheel
Classifications
U.S. Classification101/228, 101/415.1, 101/243
International ClassificationB41K3/00, B41K3/14
Cooperative ClassificationB41K3/14
European ClassificationB41K3/14