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Publication numberUS3901428 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 26, 1975
Filing dateMay 8, 1974
Priority dateMay 8, 1974
Also published asCA1021618A1
Publication numberUS 3901428 A, US 3901428A, US-A-3901428, US3901428 A, US3901428A
InventorsGrass Joseph J
Original AssigneeMonarch Marking Systems Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tag attacher
US 3901428 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 91 Grass [451 Aug. 26, 1975 TAG ATTACHER [75] Inventor: Joseph .1. Grass, Kettering, Ohio [73] Assignee: Monarch Marking Systems, Inc,

Dayton, Ohio [22] Filed: May 8, 1974 [21] Appl. N0.: 467,965

[52] U.S. Cl 227/67; 227/136 [51] Int. CL. B65c 5/06 [58] Field of Search 227/67, 95, 136; 267/69,

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,650 452 3/1972 Finkc 227/67 3,806,627 4/1974 Harmon 267/74 X FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 70,735 11/1915 Austria 267/74 Primary Examiner-Granville Y. Custer, Jr. Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Joseph J. Grass [57] ABSTRACT There is disclosed hand-held apparatus for attaching tags to merchandise. Apparatus according to the disclosure uses a fastener assembly having a plurality of fasteners. Each fastener having a bar section and a button or head section joined by a filament section. Each bar section is connected to a common rail by a respective neck or connector. The apparatus causes one fastener at a time to be severed from the connector at the intersection of its bar section and the re spective connector. The bar section of the severed fastener is pushed by a push rod through an elongated bore of a needle while the filament section passes along a side opening in the needle which communicates with the needle bore. The apparatus has a guideway and means for successively advancing the bar sections of the fastener one-at-a-time into axial alignment with the needle bore. The advancing means includes a pawl and ratchet mechanism. The guideway has an infeed side into which the fastener assembly is inserted and an outfeed side from which the rail and the connectors from which the bar sections have been severed can exit. A manually operable lever operates the push rod and the pawl and ratchet mechanism. A return spring returns the lever, the pawl and ratchet mechanism, and the push rod to their initial positions after a cycle of operation. A shield is connected to the outfeed side of the apparatus to protect the merchandise from being snagged by the free ends of the severed connectors. A vibration dampener in contact with the return spring dampens vibrations set up in the spring during a cycle of operation.

9 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures PATENTEB AUG 2 61975 SHKET 1. [IF 2 TAG AITACI-IER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates to the art of applying fasteners, and specifically to apparatus for attaching tags to articles such as merchandise by means of fasteners.

2. Description of the Prior Art An early disclosure of a tag attacher is found in French Pat. No. 668,545, patented July 15, 1929. A later version of a tag attacher is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,103,666 in which there is illustrated a relatively short assembly rod and relatively few attachments or fasteners. The economics is such that it is too costly to produce a fastener assembly having such a small number of fasteners as illustrated in US. Pat. No. 3,103,666. Commercial fastener assemblies have thus included 20, 25, 35, 50 and 100 fasteners. Not only is it economical to mold assemblies having large numbers of fasteners, but the greater the number of fasteners per assembly the less often it is required to load the tag attacher. A yet later version of a tag attacher is disclosed in US. Pat. No. 3,650,452, the entire disclosure of Y which is incorporated herein by reference. Another version of a tag attacher is disclosed in US. Pat. No. 3,759,435. In US. Pat. No. 3,733,657 there are described attachments and a method of separating the attachments which can cause the relatively sharp ends of the necks or connectors to catch on or snag fabric merchandise. This is especially true with delicate merchandise, such as lingerie. It has been found that as a bar section is severed from its respective connector and to some extent as the tooth of the pawl moves over a tooth of the ratchet wheel in an apparatus such as shown in US. Pat. No. 3,650,452, vibrations are set up in the spring, producing a ringing sound audible to the user.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention employs apparatus for attaching tags to articles such as merchandise using a conventional fastener assembly. Each fastener of the assembly has a bar section and a button or head section joined by a filament section. The bar sections of the fasteners are connected to a rail or rod by respective connectors or necks. A considerable number of fasteners, for example, twenty or more, are connected to a single rail. During use of the apparatus, the rail is guided in a guideway and the fastener assembly is advanced by advancing means. The advancing means advance successive bars to a position in alignment with a bore of a needle. The bars of the fasteners are successively severed from the respective connectors and a push rod pushes the bar section through the needle bore as the filament section passes along a side opening in the needle. The exposed ends of the connectors which have been advanced beyond the outfeed end of the guideway are prevented from snagging the merchandise by means of a shield in accordance with the invention. The shield is comprised in the preferred embodiments of a deflectable tube connected to the body of the tag attacher at the outfeed side of the guideway. As the tube is likely to contact the merchandise as the needle is inserted through the merchandise, the deflection of the shield prevents the shield from interfering with the attaching operation. The shield can be constructed of low cost plastics or rubber material which deflects readily. There is enough clearance between the inside of the tubular shield to obviate friction resistance as the fastener assembly is being advanced and to enable the rail and the associated connectors to drop out when the last fastener has been severed from its respective connector. The apparatus includes a return spring for returning various of the operative components of the apparatus to an initial position to complete a cycle of operation.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view showing a tag attached to merchandise by a fastener;

FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view of a tag attaching apparatus with a shield and a vibration dampener in accordance with one embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of the tag attaching apparatus, showing the needle as having been pushed through the tag and the merchandise and the push rod as having pushed the bar section of the fastener substantially through the needle, the shield and the vibration dampener being shown in section;

FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken generally along line 44 of FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a top plan view, on an enlarged scale, taken generally along line 5-5 of FIG. 3;

FIG. 6 is a partly sectional, fragmentary, horizontal, view;

FIG. 7 is a view similar to FIG. 6 but showing the bar section of the fastener being pushed out of the needle by the push rod;

FIG. 8 is an elevational view showing how the shield can deflect should it contact the merchandise to be tagged;

FIG. 9 is an elevational view of a shield in accordance with another embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 10 is an elevational view of a shield in accordance with still another embodiment of the invention; and

FIG. 11 is a fragmentary perspective view of the shield shown in FIG. 10.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to the drawings there is shown apparatus 20 that uses fasteners generally indicated at 21 which are interconnected to provide a fastener assembly 22. A typical use of a fastener 21 is illustrated in FIG. 1, wherein a tag 23 is shown attached to a garment 24. Each fastener 21 of the assembly 22 includes a bar section 25 and a button or head section 26 joined by a filament or string section 27.

The fastener assembly 22 is constructed of plastics material such as nylon or the like and can be molded into a unitary construction such that each of the fasteners 21 is integrally connected to a rod or rail 22' by a connector 28.

With particular reference to FIGS. 2 and 3, the apparatus 20 is shown to include a body 20' constructed of body sections or side plates 29 and 30. The body section 29 has posts or pivots 31, 32 and 33 molded integrally therewith. The body section 29 has a handle portion 34 which is adapted to fit against the palm of the users hand. An operating member or lever 35 pivotally mounted by the pivot 31 is engageable by the users fingers. When squeezed, the lever 35 is pivoted counterclockwise and an associated drive lever 36 is also pivoted counterclockwise. A spiral tension spring 41 is connected at one end to a post 29 molded integrally with the body section 29 and at its other end through a hole 42 and the lever 36. The tension spring 41 urges the lever 36 clockwise (FIG. 3) to its home or initial position shown in FIG. 2. The body section 29 has guides 47 and 48. A slide or guided member 49 is guided by the guide 47 and a slide 62, guided by the guide 48, has an integrally formed pin or projection 65 received in an elongated slot 66 in the lever 36. A push or drive rod 55 has a bent portion or pin 56 which extends into an elongated slot 54 and is received by the guided member 49. The push rod 55 is thus guided at its one end by the slide 49 and along its length by grooves 57 and 59. The slide 62 is shown to have an elongated slot 67. Paw] 68 has a tooth 69 shown to be in engagement with a ratchet wheel 70. The pawl 68 hasa pin or boss 72 which is received in the elongated slot 67. The pawl 68 cooperates with the ratchet wheel 70 to provide a pawl and ratchet mechanism. The ratchet wheel 70 is shown to be formed integrally with a feed wheel 73 which engages the connectors 28 to feed the fastener assembly 22 through the apparatus 20.

There is shown a tubular member, specifically a needle, generally indicated at 76 mounted by the body section 29. The needle 76 terminates at a pointed piercing end 77 and has a through bore 78 (FIG. 7) and an elongated slot 82 (FIG. 3) in the side of the needle 76 which communicates with the bore 78. The elongated slot 82 is wide enough to allow the filament section 27 adjacent the bar section to pass along the slot 82 while the bar section 25 is passing through the bore 78. The needle 76 has an enlarged portion 80 which terminates at a cutting edge 81. The push rod 55 is guided in its reciprocating movement in alignment with the bore 78. As the operator is actuated from the position shown in FIG. 2 to the position shown in FIG. 3, the push rod pushes on the end of a bar section 25 which is in alignment with the bore 78 to cause the bar section 25 to be severed from its respective connector 28. In the position shown in FIG. 3, the pin 72 has reached an abutment 67 formed by one end of the slot 67, thus causing the pawl 68 to move to the left (as seen in FIG. 3) to move the tooth 69 of the pawl 68 over one tooth of the ratchet wheel 70. When the counterclockwise movement of the actuator 35 is complete, the bar section 25 has moved completely through bore 78 to the other side of the material 24 as best shown in FIG. 3. Upon release of the operating lever 35, the return spring 41 returns the lever 36, the actuator 35, the push rod 55, the slide 62 and the pawl 68 to their initial position shown in FIG. 1. Just before these components reach their initial positions, the other end 67 of the slot 67 abuts the pin 72 to cause counterclockwise rotation of the ratchet and feed wheels and 73 (FIGS. 2 and 3), thereby advancing the fastener assembly 22 until the next successive bar section 25 is in axial alignment with the bore 78 in the needle 76. The body section 29 includes a slot or guideway 87 for guiding the fastener assembly 22. The slot 87 has an infeed side and an outfeed side 121. The foregoing is a brief description of the apparatus disclosed in US. Pat. No. 3,650,452.

The body section 29 is provided with a connector or fitting 122 at the outfeed side of the guideway 87. Although the connector is shown to be integral with the body section 29, it can be suitably removably or permanently attached, if desired. A shield generally indicated at 123 is shown to be connected to the fitting 122. More particularly, the shield 123 is shown to comprise a generally tubular member 124, one marginal end of which is snugly but preferably removably received about the fitting 122. The tube 124 has a convoluted section 125 immediately adjacent its marginal end so that the tube 124, which is composed of a flexible resilient material, can readily deflect from the position shown in FIGS. 3 and 4 to the position shown in FIG. 8 so that when the tube 124 is moved into contact with an article, such as fabric material, during the tag attaching operation, then the tubular shield 123 can yield. This enables the apparatus 20 to apply tags to merchandise in inaccessible places as if the shield 123 were not present. As shown in FIGS. 3 and 4, the rail 22' and the respective connectors 28 from which the bar sections 25 of respective fasteners 21 have been severed extend into the space within the shield 123. There is clearance between the shield 123 and the rail 22 and its connectors 28 so that the shield 123 does not interfere with the free advance of the fastener assembly 22 as the feed wheel 72 is rotated counterclockwise (FIG. 3). It is preferred to make the shield 123 of such length that the end 22" of the rail 22 just emerges from the far end 129 of the shield 123 when the bar section 25 of the last fastener 21 has been severed from its respective connector 28. Thereupon, the rail 22' and the respective connectors 28 which remain connected to the rail 22 can pass freely out of the end 129. It is readily apparent that the shield 123 shields the severed ends of the connectors 28 from contact with the article to which the tag 23 is being attached.

Referring to the embodiment of FIG. 9, in which an alternative form of shield 123a is shown, it is noted that the shield 123a takes the form of a cylindrical tube 124a which does not have the convolutions 125 as in the embodiment of FIGS. 2 through 8. The tube 124a is however comprised of a very flexible resilient material as the tube 124 and can deflect in the manner shown by phantom lines 124a.

The shield 12317 of the embodiments of FIGS. 10 and 11 is shown to comprise a tube l24b connected to the fitting 122. The tube is shown to have a V-shaped cut 130 adjacent the end of the fitting 122. The cut 130 facilitates flexure of the tube and forms a hinge as indicated at 131 to facilitate flexure to the position shown by phantom lines 124b.

The shields 123, 123a and 123b are shown to be of tubular construction but a split sleeve, or other shapes can be used in carrying out the invention. The shields can be made long enough for accommodating the longest length fastener assemblies, for example, 100 fasteners per assembly and if the user desires to use fastener assemblies having for example 50 fasteners per assembly, the user can simply cut off the excess length with a pair of scissors.

The shields 123, 123a and 123b are composed of any suitable flexible resilient materials such as rubber, vinyl or other plastics material, a styrene-butadiene copolymer, or the like.

In accordance with another feature of the invention, there is provided a vibration dampener generally indicated at for dampening vibrations set up in the spring 41 during movement of the operative components of the apparatus 20 in a cycle of operation. The vibration dampener 140 dampens these vibrations and the concomitant ringing sound produced by the spring 41. The dampener 140 is shown to comprise a split sleeve 141 having a slot 142. The sleeve 141 is received about and is in contact with the outer surface of the spring 41. The sleeve 141 can be composed of rubber, flexible resilient plastics material, or other suitable materials. Other forms of vibration dampers can be used as for example a tube or rod of material (not shown) inside and in contact with the spring 41, a weight or other mass attached to the spring 41, or resilient materials such as rubber or felt pads in contact with the spring 41.

Other embodiments and modifications of this invention will suggest themselves to those skilled in the art, and all such of these as come within the spirit of this invention are included within its scope as best defined by the appended claims.

I claim:

1. Apparatus for attaching tags to merchandise using fasteners, each fastener having a bar section and a button section joined by a filament section, with a connector joined to each bar section, and a rail joined to the connectors to provide a unitary fastener assembly, the apparatus comprising: a body, a needle having a piercing end extending outwardly of the body, a bore extending lengthwise of the needle, an elongated slot in the side of the needle communicating with the bore, means for advancing the fastener assembly, a guideway in the body for guiding the fastener assembly and disposed so that when the advancing means is operated a bar section of a fastener is brought into axial alignment with the bore, the guideway being considerably shorter than the rail and having an infeed side into which the fastener assembly is inserted and an outfeed side from which the rail and the associated connectors which have been severed from the respective bars can pass, a knife for severing the connectors from the bar sections, a push rod engageable with the bar section for driving the bar section through the bore while the filament section of the fastener passes through the slot, and a shield connected to the body at the outfeed side of the guideway to receive the rail with the connectors for shielding the severed ends of those connectors from contact with the merchandise to prevent snagging the merchandise, the shield being sufficiently long so that the severed ends are shielded from the merchandise until substantially all the fasteners of the fastener assembly have been severed.

2. Apparatus as defined in claim 1, wherein the shield is generally tubular in configuration.

3. Apparatus as defined in claim 1, wherein the shield is connected to the body by a fitting, the shield having means disposed adjacent the fitting for enabling the shield to deflect readily as the shield is brought into contact with the merchandise.

4. Apparatus as defined in claim 1, wherein the shield comprises a tube, the tube having convolutions to enable the shield to deflect readily as the tube is brought into contact with the merchandise.

5. Apparatus as defined in claim 1, wherein the shield comprises a tube, the tube being weakened to enable the tube to deflect readily as the tube is brought into contact with the merchandise.

6. Apparatus as defined in claim 1, wherein the shield comprises a tube, the length of the tube is such that the end of the rail emerges from the tube when the bar of the last fastener has been advanced into alignment with the needle bore.

7. Apparatus as defined in claim 1, wherein the shield comprises a tube composed of a flexible material so that the tube can deflect when the tube is brought into contact with the merchandise.

8. Apparatus as defined in claim 1, including means for removably connecting the shield to the body.

9. Apparatus for attaching tags to merchandise using fasteners, each fastener having a bar section and a button section joined by a filament section, with a connector joined to each bar section, and a rail joined to the connectors to provide a unitary fastener assembly, the apparatus comprising: a body, a needle having a piercing end extending outwardly of the body, a bore extending lengthwise of the needle, an elongated slot in the side of the needle communicating with the bore, means for advancing the fastener assembly, a guideway in the body for guiding the fastener assembly and disposed so that when the advancing means is operated a bar section of a fastener is brought into axial alignment with the bore, the guideway being considerably shorter than the rail and having an infeed side into which the fastener assembly is inserted and an outfeed side from which the rail and the associated connectors which have been severed from the respective bars can pass, a knife for severing the connectors from the bar sections, a push rod engageable with the bar section for driving the bar section through the bore while the filament section of the fastener passes through the slot, and a shield connected to the body at the outfeed side of the guideway to receive the rail with the connectors for shielding the severed ends of those connectors from contact with the merchandise to prevent snagging the merchandise, the shield being sufficiently long so that the severed ends are shielded from the merchandise until substantially all the fasteners of the fastener assembly have been severed, wherein the shield is constructed of a flexible material to enable the shield to deflect when brought into contact with the merchandise.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3650452 *Sep 30, 1970Mar 21, 1972Monarch Marking Systems IncTag attacher
US3806627 *Sep 16, 1969Apr 23, 1974Chance CoSpacer-damper for bundle conductors
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4449283 *Jun 16, 1982May 22, 1984Microdot Inc.Semi-automatic insert tool
US4487354 *Oct 30, 1981Dec 11, 1984Toska Co., Ltd.Tag attaching device
US4664306 *Apr 22, 1986May 12, 1987Kwik Ticket, Inc.Tag attacher
US5950901 *Aug 19, 1997Sep 14, 1999Toska Co., Ltd.Securing-piece attaching apparatus
US6488691May 3, 2000Dec 3, 2002Brendan J. CarrollLaparascopic incision closure device
US6655571 *Mar 12, 2001Dec 2, 2003Kotec's Co., Ltd.Fastening element attaching device
US6971515Nov 5, 2001Dec 6, 2005Avery Dennison CorporationFastener clip and fastener dispensing tool
US7331497 *Nov 27, 2002Feb 19, 2008Avery Dennison CorporationTool for dispensing plastic fasteners
US7472813Oct 9, 2007Jan 6, 2009Avery Dennison CorporationTool for dispensing plastic fasteners
US7828183 *Oct 24, 2007Nov 9, 2010Kabushiki Kaisya ToskaDevice for attaching fasteners
WO2002036438A1Nov 5, 2001May 10, 2002Avery Dennison CorpFastener clip and fastener dispensing tool
Classifications
U.S. Classification227/67, 227/136
International ClassificationB65C7/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65C7/005
European ClassificationB65C7/00C2