US 3902407 A
A flat cardboard blank is provided with score lines along which it is to be bent in known fashion into a box, by being conveyed to a folding station where conventional equipment effects the setting up of the box. To prevent the equipment from being jammed by a deformed blank or to permit an acceptable box to be formed from such a deformed blank, the blank is acted upon intermediate its edges either by suction or by compressed air which act upon one or both surfaces and hold the blank in the desired planar configuration. A supplementary conveyor may also be provided to guide and support the blank intermediate its edges, the supplementary conveyor being foraminous so the suction or compressed air can act therethrough.
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
[ Sept. 2, 1975 1 DEVICE FOR SETTING UP FOLDING BOX SECTIONS  Inventor: Willi Trosdorff, Dusseldorf,
Germany  Assignee: Jagenberg Werke AG, Dusseldorf,
Germany 22 Filed: Aug. 7, 1972 21 Appl. No.: 278,698
Related US. Application Data  Continuation of Ser. No. 66,975, Aug. 26, 1970,
3,084,640 4/1963 Hayes et a1. 269/21 X 3,288,037 11/1966 Burnett 93/52 UX 3,456,563 7/1969 Rocsner et al 93/55 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 1,207,778 12/1965 Germany 93/55 Primary Examiner-J. M. M'eister Assistant Examiner-Le0n Gilden Attorney, Agent, or F irm-Burgess, Dinklage & Sprung  ABSTRACT A flat cardboard blank is provided with score lines along which it is to be bent in known fashion into a box, by being conveyed to a folding station where conventional equipment effects the setting up of the box. To prevent the equipment from being jammed by a deformed blank or to permit an acceptable box to be formed from such a deformed blank, the blank is acted upon intermediate its edges either by suction or by compressed air which act upon one or both surfaces and hold the blank in the desired planar configuration. A supplementary conveyor may also be provided to guide and support the blank intermediate its edges, the supplementary conveyor being foraminous so the suction or compressed air can act therethrough.
1 Claim, 4 Drawing Figures In the fabricationof boxes-special means are required for setting up and folding the flaps of the sections moving through a folding box pasting machine. The pro-,
cessing of plane-surface sections presents no difficulties. When, however, sections are processed which through bad shipping or storing conditions or through moisture have experienced curvatures or undulations, smooth mechanical setting up of the flaps by means of setting-up tools presents difficulties. The thereby resulting damage to the section may lead to unacceptable boxes, to interruptions in the working processs or even stoppage of the machine.
The hitherto known procedure for processing the sections smoothly consisted in leveling the section in a smoothing device or by hand prior to insertion into the machine.
Aside from the additional expenditure in work occasioned thereby it sometimes happened that a section during its processing reassumed its original position and thereby caused work interruptions.
It is accordingly an object of the invention to provide a process and apparatus for effecting the smooth setting up or folding of box blanks notwithstanding the presence of minor deformations.
This and other objects and advantages are realized in accordance with the present invention which provides pneumatic means for bringing the body of the box blank into planar condition prior to setting up, such pneumatic means involving either suction or compressed air.
The invention will be described with reference to the accompanying drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a lateral elevation of a first embodiment in accordance with the invention, with a portion shown in section;
FIG. 2 is a section through the apparatus of FIG. 1 along line 22 showing how the novel suction device acts;
FIG. 3 is a plan view of the portion of the apparatus shown in FIG. 2; and
FIG. 4 shows another embodiment wherein the stationary suction box is enclosed by a rotating conveyor belt.
As seen in FIGS. 1 to 3, each edge of a cardboard box 6, comprising a body 611 and flaps 6b joined or hinged thereto along score lines, is gripped between an upper and lower conveyor 2 and transported thereby to a folding station or area where the flaps 6b are displaced in known fashion to set up or form a box. While moving along, the blank 6 moves over a suction chamber 1 which is fastened between conveyor belts 2 in an adjustable mounting support (not shown). By means of a line 3, the suction chamber 1 is connected with a source of vacuum (not shown), such as a vacuum pump. The upper side of suction chamber 1 is provided with openings 4. To prevent sudden impacts or collisions and therewith connected shifting of section 6 between the conveyor belts 2, the suction chamber ]1 is provided with a ramp-like bevel 5. By means of the conveyor belts 2 the sections 6 are brought in a continuous manner into the range of conventional folding tools 7 and 8. I
The manner of operation of the device is as follows: The box blanks 6 coming from a stamping device (not shown) are moved forward by the conveyor belts 2 over the suction device 1. Due to the vaccum in suction device I a deformed portion 6a, shown in phantom in FIG..2, is sucked in and thereby smoothed. The flattened section 6a, while still held by suction, is moved into the range of folding tools 7 and 8, where the actual folding process takes place.
In FIG. 4 there is shown an alternative device in which the blank 6 is supported. and guided in its central or intermediate portion as well as along its edges. To this end an endless belt 9 is trained over rolls 10 which drive belt 9 at the same speed as belts 2. The suction chamber 1 is positioned between the runs of the belt 9 which belt is foraminous or perforated so the suction acts through the belt without interference.
In place of suction to flatten the box blanks, compressed air can be similarly used except that in such case a back up will be required to support the surface of the blank opposite that on which the air acts. For example, the belt 9 could serve such function, replacing the suction chamber 1 by a plenum chamber discharging pressurized air from above the box blank 6.
If desired suction or compressed air blasts can operate on both surfaces of the blank simultaneously.
In this manner scored box blanks can be processed through folding machinery smoothly notwithstanding minor deformations.
It will be appreciated that the instant specification and examples are set forth by way of illustration and not limitation, and that various modifications and changes may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention.
What is claimed is:
1. In an apparatus for the formation of a box from a flat blank wherein the blank, provided with score lines, is conveyed to a station and there acted upon by folding means, including a pair of laterally disposed conveyor means each engaging and conveying a respective edge of a scored box blank so as to move said blank to a predetermined station, and folding means for acting on said blank to form it into a box, the improvement which comprises means for forcing only a portion of said blank into a planar condition while guiding and sup porting said blank at its edges while at said station by a foraminous member, said means providing free mobility of the forwardly and rearwardly disposed sections of the scored box blank to be raised during folding thereof, folding means operated by pneumatic means to act exclusively upon the central area of the box blank by suction or by compressed air, said laterally disposed conveyor means positioned to act upon the top and bottom of the blank plane, means for folding over the forwardly and rearwardly disposed sections of the blank to be raised at the scored lines perpendicularly to the advance direction. of the blank and means for raising said forwardly and rearwardly disposed sections unaffected by the action of suction or compressed air, said laterally disposed conveyor means, laterally spaced apart from one another to define the lateral sides of said area, each of said pair of conveyor means including a pair of conveyors acting on top and on bottom of a respective edge of said blank so as to grip said to act upon the intermediate portion of said blank while said blank is at said station, said supplementary conveyor means moving at the same speed as said pair of conveying means and being provided with a foraminous surface where it contacts said blank, whereby the suction is effected through said supplementary conveying means, said pneumatically acting means comprising a suction chamber positioned so as to pull the intermediate portion of said blank into the same plane as said edges.