US 3902955 A
Apparatus for shaping and applying a flat applique on a strip-like flexible substrate. Means is provided for cutting the outer boundary of the applique from a larger body of material, and, when desired, for cutting inner boundaries and removing the excess material. A punch guide supports a punch having a first cutting edge which reciprocates toward and away from an orifice in a first shear plate. A first channel above and a second channel below the first shear plate respectively accommodate the applique material and the substrate material at first and second levels, whereby the punch cuts the outer boundary of the applique at the first level, presses it through the orifice in the first shear plate and onto the substrate material at the second level. If desired, a second cutting edge may be provided on the punch to cooperate with a second shear orifice at the second level to punch out any internal portions not forming part of the applique. As further optional features of the invention, printing means can be disposed adjacent to the punch guide, as may a cutter for serrating or cutting the substrate material.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept. 2, 1975 MEANS FOR CUTTING APPLIQUES AND APPLYING THEM TO SUBSTRATES Primary Exuminer-Charles E. Van Horn Assistant Examiner-M. G. Wityshyn Attorney, Agent, or FirmDonald D. Mon
 Inventor: William S. West, Pasadena, Calif.
 Assignee: Jonathan E. Blacher, Pasadena,  ABSTRACT Calif. a part interest Apparatus for shapmg and applymg a flat appllque on Filedi p 1973 a strip-like flexible substrate. Means is provided for  AppL 393,748 cutting the outer boundary of the applique from a larger body of materlal, and, when desired, for cutting inner boundaries and removing the excess material. A punch guide supports a punch having a first cutting 5 554 edge which reciprocates toward and away from an ori- 3323 B323 31/18 fice in a first shear plate. A first channel above and a Field of Search 56/261, 520, 384, second channel below the first shear plate respectively 156/5 I0, 1 1/2 2 143 accommodate the applique material and the substrate material at first and second levels, whereby the punch cuts the outer boundary of the applique at the first  References Cited lelvttzl, prgssestit tttlllrouglh tthet: orifife it; tl'zefltlirst Shea;
paean ono esusraemaena a esecon UNITED STATES PATENTS level. If desired, a second cutting edge may be pro- 3 2??? vided 0n the punch to cooperate with a second shear 5111:1386; 41938 v2n. ;;;g;;;:;: 3111: 1561520 orifiee at the e level to Punch 9" any 2.522.224 9/1950 Hcdingcr, Jr. [56/384 F not formmg of h i f AS further 3.392.077 7/1968 Brieskc ct al. 156/513 Optional features of the 1nvent1on, pnntmg means can 3.441.462 4/1969 Bogcn Cl al. 156/513 be dlsposed l tofhe Punch gulde, as y a 3.585.095 6 1971 Shearhod 156/261 for Serratmg Or Clmmg the Substrate material- 6 Claims, 19 Drawing Figures /4/ I43 I40 /Z5 //8 12a y fid rz I I 1 v I fi 22221 I K II I I I I l I 2 '72 t 11' I36 t; 0 g: 7: I /05 a/ ,62
III III PATENTEU 2l9 5 sum 3 0f 3 MEANS FOR CUTTING APPLIQUES AND APPLYING THEM TO SUBSTRATES This apparatus relates to the manufacture of appliques such as are commonly used in the graphic arts. and in the marking or tagging arts.
A common form of applique is a die-cut. selfadhesive body. such as a ring-like structure. or a structure formed in the shape of an entire tag or half ofa tag. which are customarily applied to a substrate of material that can be stripped from the applique. Often the substrate is composed of a plurality of pieces. whereby one piece can be removed and the other used as a temporary handle for manipulating the applique.
Appliques which are strippable from a substrate are well known. However. in the prior art. it is customary first to laminate a strip of applique material with a strip of substrate material. and then to cut through only the applique material to form the applique. The problem with this technique is that when the applique has cutouts formed by inner boundaries, the inside material has to be removed by hand. It cannot readily be stripped away. and this is a severe economic disadvantage.
Still other means are known for manufacturing appliques of this type wherein the applique is first formed and then conveyed to another location where it is applied to the substrate. Accurate alignment and place ment of the applique on the substrate is very difficult. and the cost of the applique is unnecessarily high due to the manipulations required.
It is an object of this invention to provide apparatus for shaping and applying an applique onto a flexible substrate which can he done readily with inexpensive equipment. It provides an accurately dimensioned applique applied to close dimensional tolerances on a flexible. strip-like substrate. and can have internal cutouts with the material removed. all without specific manipulations of the said removed material in the sense of hand-removal. or conveyance to another location for application to the substrate. v
Apparatus according to this invention includes a punch guide defining a punch axis. A punch is supported by the punch guide. and it is reciprocably movable along the punch axis. The punch carries a first cutting cdge having the shape of the outer boundary of the applique for shaping the same. A first shear plate has a first shear orifice thcrethrough with a first boundary edge contiguous to the shear orifice. having substantially the same dimensions as the first cutting edge. The punch is so disposed and arranged as to move into and out of the first shear orifice. A first channel and a second channel are disposed adjacent to the first shear plate at a first level and a second level. respectively. The first channel is on the side of the shear orifice closer to the punch. and the second channel is on the opposite side thereof. Both channels are so disposed and arranged as to guide strip-like material past the first shear orifice and to position it normal to the punch axis at that location. The first channel is adapted to guide material to form the applique. and the second channel is adapted to guide the substrate material. The punch is axially movable. whereby to shear an applique to the outer shape defined by the first boundary edge and the first cutting edge and to press the shaped appliquc through the first orifice and onto the substrate material. The applique material and the substrate material are movable through their respective channels when the punch is entirely above the applique material.
According to a preferred butoptional feature of the invention. a second cutting edge is carried by the punch. said second cutting edge having the shape of the boundary of an inner region to be removed from the applique inside its outer boundary. A second shear plate is positioned on the opposite side of the second channel from the first shear plate and has a second shear orifice therethrough. A second shear edge is formed on the second shear plate contiguous to the second shear orifice and has substantially the same dimensions as the second cutting edge on the punch. whereby the second cutting edge can enter the said second shear orifice and shear the material at the second level.
According to still another preferred but optional feature of the invention. a type guide defines a printing axis adjacent to the punch guide and supports a type member carrying type means for printing on the applique.
According to yet another preferred but optional feature of the invention, a cutter is reciprocably mounted adjacent to the punch guide for reciprocablemovement toward. and away from a block. whereby to cut or serrate the substrate between the appliques.
According to still another preferred but optional feature of the invention, means is provided to actuate the aforesaid apparatus and intermittently to draw the material thcrethrough.
The above and other features of this invention will be fully understood from the following detailed description and the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a plan view of an applique applied to a substrate according to the invention;
FIG. 2 is a cross-section taken at line 22 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a plan view of another type of applique attached to a substrate of a single thickness;
FIG. 4 is a cross-section taken at line 4-4 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 5 shows the applique of FIG. 3 in use;
FIG. 6 is a plan view of another shape of applique which can be made with the invention;
FIG. 7 is a plan view of still another embodiment of applique similar to that of FIG. 1 showing an additional feature of the invention;
FIG. 8 is a cross-section taken at line 8-8 of FIG. 7;
FIG. 9 is a side elevation, partly in cutaway crosssection. showing the presently preferred embodiment of the invention;
FIGS. II). II and I2 are cross-sections taken at lines 10-10, 1III, and I2I2. respectively. of FIG. 9'.
FIG I3 is a fragmentary axial cross-section showing a portion of theembodiment of FIG. 9 in another operating position;
FIG. I4 is a side elevation ofthe device of FIG. 9 with additional features;
FIG. I5 is a top view of FIG. 14'.
FIG. 16 is a fragmentary axial cross-section of a portion of FIG. I4;
view in FIG. 16 taken at line gion 33 bounded by inner boundary 33a where material has been removed. As can be seen from FIG. 2, material has also been removed from the substrate. In this case. the substrate comprises a plurality oflayers 34, 35 which only partially overlap one another so that the applique is attached to both of the layers. but is not attached to either layer over its entire surface.
FIG. 3 shows another applique 37 in the form of a double tag. This applique is applied to a substrate 38 which comprises only a single layer. The applique includes an outer boundary 3) and a pair of inner regions 40, 41 where material has been removed. This is for the purpose of forming a tag as shown in FIG. 5 where the tag is doubled over by forming a bend 42 so that these surfaces adjere to one another. This is a particularly useful shape in the retail marketing area where the areas 43, 44 can first be printed. and later, at the time of use, the tag can be peeled from the substrate and folded over. String can be passed through the aligned holes formed by regions and 41.
FIG. 6 shows an applique 46 in the shape of an X with a region 47 removed in the center. The applique has an outer boundary 48. Applique 46 is applied to substrate 49. Letters A, B, C, D are shown printed on this applique, and the purpose of this illustration is to show the generality of inner and outer boundary shape which can be attained by modifying the shape of the cutting elements used herein. FIG. 7 shows appliques 50 applied to a substrate 51 of the same general nature and construction as that of FIG. 1. The applique includes an outer boundary 52, a central region 53 which has been removed and having an inner boundary 53a, and the substrate comprises layers 54, 55. The embodiment of FIG. 7 differs from that of FIG. 1 in that serrations 56, which are perforations. have been formed entirely through the substrate material, and edge cut-outs 57 have been formed along the edge. whereby the substrate may readily be torn to form individual tabs 58 to support individual appliques as they are being handled, all as will be more fully described later.
The most frequently used combination of applique and substrate is expected to be one in which the applique material bears a thin layer of pressure-sensitive adhesive (not shown in the drawings because of its thin ness). and a paper substrate which is coated with release material. The release material is also not specifically illustrated because of its thinness. Adhesives and release materials of this type are well known and need no specific disclosure here. Such adhesives may be lightly pressed onto such coated substrates and can readily be peeled from them at the time of use.
It is also within the scope of this invention to apply the pressure-sensitive adhesive to the release-coated material. and to transfer the adhesive to applique material during the die-cutting operation. In either event, the applique will end up with a full surface coating of adhesive.
It may be observed here that these adhesives will adhere strongly to surfaces which are not treated for release of the adhesive, for example. ordinary paper surfaces. and of course. it will adhere to itself as in FIG.
Because the material of the substrate and also of the applique are on the order of only between about ().()()l-().()()3 inch thick. the relative proportions of thickness to width are of necessity greatly exaggerated in the drawings. It will be appreciated that in practice the dimensions of the metal dies and the like may be substantially heavier than shown relative to the illustrated thickness of the flexible materials of which the appliques and the substrates are formed.
Apparatus 60 for shaping and applying an applique onto a strip-like, flexible substrate is shown in FIG. 9, and it will be assumed that the assembly being formed is that illustrated in FIG. 1. For this purpose, material 61 for the applique and material 62 and 63 for the substrate is conveniently supplied from reels 64, 65, 66. These reels are mounted on shafts 67. 68, 69, and are laterally shiftable so as to align the materials laterally relative to each other relative to their direction of motion (or feed"). The apparatus has a frame on which the shafts are supported. Similarly. a punch guide 71, which defines av punch axis 72, is supported on the frame. It includes a passage 73 in which a punch 75 is axially reciprocable. The punch carries a collar 76. A bias spring 77 is interposed in compression between the collar and the punch guide so as to bias the punch upwardly in FIG. 9.
The punch carries a first cutting edge 80 in the shape of the desired outer boundary of the applique. In the event that an inner cut-out region is desired to be formed in the applique (and this will not be used when an applique without a cut-out is to be produced a second cutting edge 81 is formed that is axially spaced from the first cutting edge. Its shape will be that of the boundary of the inner region to be removed.
A first shear plate 83 is supported beneath the punch guide. It includes a first shear orifice 84 which passes through the first shear plate. There is a first boundary edge 85 on the first shear plate contiguous to the first shear orifice, and it has substantially the same dimensions as the first cutting edge on the punch. The punch may therefore make a close shearing fit in the orifice according to known die-cutting techniques. It has been found desirable in this invention to form a recess 86 within the first cutting edge. This may be a disc-shaped recess. and the second cutting edge is formed on the end of a post 87 rising within it. When the cutting edge presses the applique onto the substrate (FIG. 13). the pressure is applied mainly at the boundary. which gives one closer control over the adhesion of the applique to the substrate. Even when the substrate is releasecoated. the adhesion is roughly a direct function of pressure applied. Therefore, a good application at the edge can be made, but with a lesser adhesion at the middle. which is a considerable advantage.
A first channel 90 and a second channel 91 are formed adjacent to the first shear plate at a first level and a second level", respectively. The first channel is formed on the side of the first shear plate closer to the punch. and the second channel is formed on the oppo site side thereof. The outer boundary is formed at the first level. and the inner boundary, when there is one. is formed at the second level. The channels pass through the mechanism and guide the strip-like materials past the punch. and maintains them normal to the punch. The material 61 of the applique passes through the first channel. and the material 62, 63 of the substrate passes through the second channel. When a cutout region is to be formed in the applique. a second shear plate 95 is positioned below the second channelv The second shear plate forms a boundary of the second channel. It includes a second shear orifice 96 and a second boundary edge 97 contiguous to the second shear orifice having substantially the same dimensions as the second cutting edge on the punch, whereby the second cutting edge can cooperate with the second boundary edge to die-cut the region to be removed. As can be seen from FIGS. 2 and 13, the inner material removed is that of both the applique and of the substrate.
The foregoing apparatus will construct the applique portions of FIGS. I8. It may be desirable to print a legend on the applique. as in FIG. 6, in which event it is only necessary, utilizing the same apparatus, to provide a printing station (see FIGS. 14, I6 and I7) which is spaced from the die-cutting station by a distance equal to that advanced by the material between each actuation or a multiple thereof. For this purpose, a type guide 100 is mounted to the frame adjacent to the punch guide and defines a printing axis 101. A type member I02 in the form of a plunger is mounted in the type guide and bears type means 103 in the form of raised type on its end facing along the axis and toward the applique material. A printing channel 104 guides the applique material beneath the type means and atop a platen I05 which backs up the applique material while the printing is accomplished. It will thereby be seen that reciprocation of type member 102 will cause intermittent application of printing to the applique material. Inking means, carbon means, or the like may be provided for the type means as desired and form no necessary part of this invention. The foregoing will print on the applique, as in FIG. 6.
In the event that it is desired to create the construction of FIG. 7, wherein tab-like portions 58 are pro vided on the substrate for easy detachment of portions thereof, then the cutter (FIGS. [8 and 19) is provided. together with a block 111, toward and against which it periodically reeiprocates. It should be disposed adjacent to the guide block, and may conveniently even be attached to punch 75 for reciprocation therewith. It has a cutting edge 112, best shown in FIG. 19, with a plurality of perforators I I3 and a notch I I4. This edge will cut the construction shown in FIG. 7. The cutting edge 112 will be located relative to the punch to cut the perforations and notches at a proper location relative to the applique. The length of the cutting edge will ordinarily be such that it will not cut all the way laterally across either one of the substrate layers. This leaves a solid, imperforate portion to hold the tabs together. It can, of course. readily be torn.
With further reference to FIGS. I6 and 17, in order to be certain that there is no interference between the printing or in the die-cutting operations, an override is provided in the printing means. For this purpose, the type member is provided with a central bore IIS, within which a spring I16 is seated. A plunger I17 tits in the bore and includes a head 118 to be driven. A bias spring 119 biases the type member upwardly in FIG. 16. Accordingly. when the type means is pressed against the material being printed. the plunger can still move axially, its force being transmitted through spring I16 which can further be reduced in length.
Means I (FIGS. 14 and I5) is provided to reciprocate the punch, and also to reciprocate the plunger I I7 and type member I02. Means I25 comprises a lever 126 which is mounted to a hinge block 127 forming part of the frame. The lever overhangs the punch and the head I I8. and they are spring-biased against the lever. Similarly. the lever has a yoke I28, to which is connected a pair oftension springs I29, 130, which in turn are connected to the frame. The tension springs are sufficiently strong that, unless restrained, they will pull the lever down against the punch and against head 118 so as to depress them, overcoming the resistance of material to be cut. This is to say that springs 129 and 130 are powerful enough to operate the device. They are resisted (or restrained) by a cam I31 which is mounted to a cam shaft 132. The cam shaft may be manually turned such as by a handle 133, or can be turned by a motor 134. The handle and the motor are even sometimes referred to as means to rotate the cam shaft."
The cam as shown has a periphery I35 with a long throw 136 and a short throw 137. The short throw is shown aligned and in contact with the lever so as to allow the tension springs to pull the lever down, and both the plunger and the type member are depressed. A rotation of l80 will cause the long throw to be in contact with the lever, lifting it, stretching the tension springs, and permitting the bias springs to raise the plunger and the type means away from the material. At this time the material can be drawn through to permit the operation to be repeated on a subsequent portion of the materials.
Means 140 is provided for intermittently moving the material for the applique and for the substrate through the channels. This comprises a wheel 14], also mounted to the cam shaft, this wheel having a periphery I42 which intermittently engages the substrate. For this purpose, the periphery includes a compressible block 143 of volumetrically-compressible material such as sponge attached to the wheel, which every revolution will come into contact with the materials, lightly pinching the material of the applique of the substrates together against a pinch roller I44 located beneath it. Accordingly, the material will be drawn for a distance determined by the length of contact of the compressible block against it, and this will lightly press the materials together at this point, along their edges.
The applique will have been removed from the applique strip in the cutting stage, thereby creating a waste strip 145 of excess applique material. After the assembly has departed from the pinch roller 144, the Waste strip will be peeled off by bending it sharply around a peeling roller 146. The substrate bearing the appliques can be coiled and stored for later use. i
A box 147 may be provided to receive the trimmings from the inner cut-outs. It has been found best practice to provide a second wheel 148 identical to that of wheel 14] and to pinch the substrate and waste strip together only lightly toward the edges, preferably making only slight, if any, contact with the applique itself at this point, whereby to have less tendency to peel the applique when the waste strip is removed. Also, this leaves primary control of adhesion at the die-cutting station.
When the cutter 110 is used, it will be driven concurrently with the punch, and if this is not found to be satisfactory for any reason, it may be incorporated in a separate structure, such as that of FIG. I6, including an override to avoid interference with the cutting and/or printing operations.
The operation of the device should be evident from the foregoing. In brief summary. the device of FIGS. 9 and I4 is prepared for use by threading the applique and substrate materials (one or more layers of substrate may be used. depending on the product to be produced), and adjusting the reels laterally so as to align the materials appropriately. Then motor 134 is energized, or handle 133 is turned.
In the position of FIG. 9, the punch and printing means are withdrawn, because cam 131 will have lifted arm 126, stretching the tension springs. Simultaneously, block 143 will have contacted the waste strip and pressed it and the completed product against roller 144. Further rotation of the wheel will advance the materials through the device by the appropriate distance. Then block 143 will leave the surface, and the material will stop.
After further rotation, cam 13] will move toward and to the position of FIG. 14. In so doing, the outer boundary of the applique will be cut at the first level, and the applique will be pressed to the second level and against and upon the substrate. If no inner regions are to be formed, then there will be no punching operations at the second level. If there are, then the second punch punches its pattern through the applique and the substrate. With further rotation of the cam shaft, arm 126 is raised, and the bias springs will lift the punch, and the material is next advanced.
Printing and cutting at advanced or later stations occurs when the punch is actuated. The waste strip can be peeled away continuously or intermittently, as preferred. Box 147 is occasionally emptied of its scrap.
The product produced is exactly positioned on its substrate, and inside and outside boundaries are exactly located relative to one another. The adhesion of the applique is closely controllable, and the locations of maximum adhesiveness is selectible by varying the shape of recess 86.
The substrate will usually be made of a readily tearable material so that portions of the product can readily be torn off for use. The applique will ordinarily overlap the edge of one layer of substrate so as to provide an exposed surface when it is to be used. The substrate can be used as a handle", and tabs 58 (FIG. 7) form a very convenient means for detachment and handling of portions of the product. The perforations facilitate the tearing of both layers of substrate.
More or fewer than two layers of substrate can be used, depending on the product to be produced, and appliques both with and without inner cut-outs can be produced by appropriate modifications of the punch.
This invention provides a very simple, small-sized, and portable construction which produces a very sophisticated product. It is adaptable to produce many shapes, sizes and variations from simple raw materials.
This invention is not to be limited by the embodiments shown in the drawings and described in the description, which are given by way of example and not of limitation. but only in accordance with the scope of the appended claims.
1. Apparatus for shaping and applying a flat applique onto a substrate. said applique having an outer boundary. said mechanism comprising: a frame: a punch guide supported on the frame defining a punch axis; a punch supported by the punch guide and reciprocably movable along the punch axis; a first cutting edge on the punch having the shape of the outer boundary for shaping the same; a first shear plate supported by the frame having a first shear orifice therethrough. a first boundary edge on said first shear plate contiguous to said first shear orifice having substantially the same dimensions as the said first cutting edge on the punch, the
punch being so disposed and arranged as to move the first cutting edge into and out of said first shear orifice; a first channel and a second channel adjacent to the first shear plate, the first channel being at a first level on the side of the shear orifice closer to the punch, and the second channel being at a second level on the opposite side thereof, both channels being so disposed and arranged as to guide material past the first shear orifice, and to position it normally to the punch axis at that location, the first channel being adapted to guide material to form the applique, and the second channel being adapted to guide the substrate, the punch being axially movable, whereby to shear an applique to the shape defined by the first boundary edge and the first cutting edge, and to press the applique through the first orifice and onto the substrate, the applique material and substrate material being movable through the respective channels when the punch is entirely above the applique material, a cam shaft rotatably supported by the frame around a cam shaft axis; a cam fixed to the cam shaft and rotatable therewith, said cam having a periphery with a short throw and a long throw from the cam shaft axis; a lever pivotally mounted to the frame at a fulcrum and contacting the punch; spring means normally forcing the lever against the punch to move it and cut the applique and against the periphery of the cam. whereby rotation of the first cam raises the lever in opposition to the spring means and the spring means lowers the lever, respectively as a consequence of the short and long throw being directed sequentially toward the lever; bias means forcing the punch against the lever; means fixed to the cam shaft for rotation therewith to move the substrate through the channels comprising a wheel with a portion of its periphery so disposed and arranged as periodically to contact the materials and move them through the channels; and means to rotate the cam shaft. the peripheries of the cam and of the wheel being so disposed and arranged that the wheel contacts and moves material only when the punch is out of contact with the material.
2. Apparatus according to claim 1 in which the said portion of the periphery is a volumetricallycompressible piece of material.
3. Apparatus according to claim 1 in which a second cutting edge is carried by the punch, said second cutting cdge having the shape of the boundary of an inner region to be removed from the applique inside its outer boundary, and in which a second shear plate is positioned on the opposite side of the second channel from the first shear plate, the second shear plate having a second shear orifice therethrough. and in which a second shear edge is formed on the second shear plate contiguous to the second shear orifice, having substantially the same dimensions as the said second cutting edge, said first and second cutting edges being axially spaced from one another, whereby the second cutting edge can enter the second shear orifice and at the second level remove applique material and substrate material in the shape of the inner region to be removed.
4. Apparatus according to claim 1 in which a type guide defining a printing axis is positioned adjacent to the punch guide, in which a type member is supported by the type guide and reciprocably movable along the printing axis. in which type means is carried by the type member facing in the direction of the printing axis, in which a platen extends laterally relative to the printing axis beneath the type means. and in which a printing channel is formed above the platen through which the live to one another. applique material passes to receive an impression from the type means.
5. Apparatus according to claim 1 in which adjustable means is provided adjustably to position the mate- 5 smd mammal to be Shlfted relauve to one anotherrial of the applique and of the substrate laterally rela- 6. Apparatus according to claim 5 in which said adjustable means comprises a shaft permitting reels of