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Publication numberUS3910182 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 7, 1975
Filing dateJun 6, 1974
Priority dateJun 6, 1974
Publication numberUS 3910182 A, US 3910182A, US-A-3910182, US3910182 A, US3910182A
InventorsWilliam R Beverley, Charles H Wagner
Original AssigneeNcr Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Imprinting means for a computer access terminal
US 3910182 A
Abstract
An imprinter for a computer access terminal having a keyboard and a transaction key for entering data into said terminal in response to data entered on the keyboard. The imprinter includes a frame for securing the imprinter to the terminal and a plurality of digit amount wheels which are rotatably mounted in the frame for representing a multi-digit number like price, and including various codes. The imprinter also includes a twin-fingered pawl type indexing member for each digit amount wheel, which indexes the associated digit amount wheel one digit position each time the indexing member is actuated by an associated solenoid so that each digit amount wheel is successively indexed a predetermined number of digit positions corresponding to the associated digit entered on the keyboard upon actuation of the transaction key or upon receiving an on-line imprint signal. When the amount and codes are set on the digit amount wheels, a roller type platen travels back and forth over an embossed type credit card and the digit amount wheels to print on a credit-card voucher inserted in the terminal which can be operated on-line or off-line.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Wagner et al. Oct. 7, 1975 IMPRINTING MEANS FOR A COMPUTER ACCESS TERMINAL 57 1 ABSTRACT [75] Inventors: Charles H. Wagner; William R.

Beverley both of Kettering Ohio An 1mpr1nter for a computer access term nal havlng a keyboard and a transact1on key for entermg data mto Assigneei NCR CorpOration, Dayton, Ohio said terminal in response to data entered on the key- [22] Film: June 6 1974 board. The imprinter includes a frame for securing the imprinter to the terminal and a plurality of digit [21] App]. No.: 476,983 amount wheels which are rotatably mounted in the frame for representing a multi-digit number like price, [52 US. Cl 101/110; 101/45 and including variws P also [51] Int. Cl. B41J 1/60 cludes a,twm'fingered pawl 'i mdexmg membeflr for [58] Field of Search 101/1 10 45, 95, 99, 269 each digit amount wheel, wh1ch mdexes the associated digit amount wheel one digit position each time the [56] References Cited indeliiing melrlnber is actuated by} a1; associated solienoid so t at eac digit amount w ee is successivey in- UNITED STATES PATENTS dexed a predetermined number of digit positions cor- X responding to the associated entered on the key 3,422,754 H1969 Bakard iev et al..... 101/110 X board upon actuation of the transaction key or upon g'igg gf i al receiving an on-line imprint signal. When the amount 3:757:688 9/1973 Weber ......2:12:IIIIII II 101/45 and codes are Set the amount Wheels a roller 3,771,442 11/1973 Ditman 101/99 type Plate" travels back and forth embossed Primary Examiner-J. Reed Fisher Assistant Examiner-Edward M. Coven Attorney, Agent, or Firm.l. T. Cavender; Albert L. Sessler, Jr.; Elmer Wargo 109 I as) lllll 6 ,9l 92,93 94,95 9e 97 W 9 [921%[94/95/9 i I: l-Il-II 9 7 s, ,9 iii 23::

type credit card and the digit amount wheels to print on a credit-card voucher inserted in the terminal which can be operated on-line or off-line.

2 Claims, 8 Drawing Figures Sheet 1 of7 3,91O 182 US. Patent 00. 7,1975

US. Patent Oct. 7,1975

Sheet F|(; 2 DISPLAY FOR N MERICS a STATUS 2\ INDICATORS /2O IMPRINTING MEANS ,VSO

CONTROL 42 ELECTRONICS KEYBOARD Q CENTRAL MEANS COMMUNICATIONS l6 EMBOSS D H' CARD READER l6 FIG. 3

\ Q AMOUNT 62 7O CLEAR 24 ACCOUNT 72 RESET NUMERIC CODE ENTRY M R T KEYSO 9 CREDIT I P IN I SENO J CASH 4O 66 RETURN US. Patent Oct. 7,1975 Sheet 3 of7 $910,182

w vm w mm wLm w mm w wm mivm m1 w mm mLm m-wm m m N-Nm 8 mm vm mm mm US. Patent Oct. 7,1975 Sheet 5 of7 3,910,182

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Sheet 6 of 7 US. Patent 00. 7,1975

U.S. Patant (M11975 Sheet 7 of7 3,910,182

IMPRINTING MEANS FOR A COMPUTER ACCESS 1|; NAL

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to an imprinting means for use in a terminal, which can be operated on-line or off-line, for printing on a credit-card voucher inserted in the terminal.

In recent years, there has been a trend to provide retail business establishments with terminals which are interconnected with credit service agencies and banking institutions to provide for on-line credit authorization and on-line funds transfer with automatic salesreceipt/credit-card -voucher imprinting. Additionally, the terminal can be used for other on-line data transfers such as check verification and account inquiries. The terminal can also operate as an off-line salesreceipt/credit-card-voucher imprinter.

In the past, the credit-card voucher imprinters were usually manually operated in that a credit card with embossed codes and printing thereon and a credit-card voucher were inserted in the imprinter, and the purchase amount for the credit purchase was manually entered upon the imprinter. The imprinter also contained a code identifying the retail establishment and a manually settable date printer. With the credit card and voucher positioned in the imprinter, and the purchase amount entered thereon, the operator then manually traversed an imprinter roller back and forth across the length of the voucher to imprint all the named data on the voucher.

Efforts in the past have been aimed at automating the entry of a least some of the data on a credit-cardvoucher imprinter. One such effort is shown in US. Pat. No. 3,606,833 which shows a cash register and a credit-card-voucher imprinter which are interconnected so that purchase amounts which are entered upon the cash register will be automatically entered upon the associated voucher imprinter. Another US. Pat. No. 3,771,442 shows a zero-lock print wheel apparatus for an imprinter.

The present invention discloses a low cost, compact, reliable means for entering data like a purchase price and codes on an imprinting means which is used in conjunction with a computer access terminal of the type described.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to an imprinting means for a computer access terminal, having a keyboard means and a transaction key for entering data into the terminal for printing data on a record medium inserted in the terminal in response to data entered on the keyboard means.

The imprinting means comprises a frame means for securing the imprinting means to the terminal and a plurality of amount wheel means which are rotatably mounted in the frame means for representing a multidigit number. I

Indexing means are provided for each amount wheel means for incrementally indexing the associated amount wheel means one digit position each time the indexing means is actuated so that each amount wheel means is successively indexed a predetermined number of times or digit positions corresponding to the associated digit entered upon the keyboard means. Actuating means are provided for each indexing means to actuate the associated indexing means the associated predetermined number of times upon actuation of the transaction key or upon receiving an on-line imprint signal.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. l is a general view, in perspective, of a computer access terminal into which the imprinting means of this invention may be incorporated.

FIG.2 is a schematic block diagram showing how various elements of the computer access terminal are interconnected.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged schematic diagram showing a keyboard associated with the computer access terminal.

FIG. 4 is an enlarged plan view of the imprinting means of this invention showing a frame means for securing it to said terminal, amount wheel means thereon, and actuating means for setting various amounts on the amount wheel means.

FIG. 5 is a side view in elevation, partially in cross section, and taken along the line 5-5 of FIG. 4 to show details of an actuating means associated with the imprinting means for indexing the amount wheel means thereof.

FIG. 6 is a side elevational view, partly in cross section, showing an indexing means for indexing the amount wheel means and an actuating means therefor, and is taken along the line 6-6 of FIG. 5.

FIG. 7 is a side elevational view, partly in cross section, showing additional details of the indexing means associated with each amount wheel means, and is taken along the line 7-7 of FIG. 5.

FIG. 8 is a general perspective view of a portion of the imprinting means of this invention, showing an aligner bar means for accurately aligning the amount wheel means with reference to a printing line.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION FIG. 1 is a general view in perspective of a computer access terminal 10 into which an imprinting means 12 of this invention may be incorporated. Before getting into the details of the imprinting means 12, it seems appropriate to discuss, generally, the general functioning of the terminal 10.

The terminal 10 (FIG. 1) may be a funds transfer terminal which has been developed in recent years to provide retail establishments, in conjunction with credit service agencies and banking institutions, the capability for online credit authorization and on-line funds transfer with automatic sales-receipt/credit-card voucher imprinting. Additionally, the terminal 10 can be used for other on-line data transfers such as check verification and account inquiries. The terminal 10 can also operate as an off-line sales-receipt/credit-card voucher imprinter.

The terminal 10 (FIG. 1) includes the imprinting means 12; a conventional display means 14 for displaying numeric information and various status and instruction indicators; a conventional entry keyboard means 16, for entering data upon the terminal 10; a conventional credit card reader means 18; and a conventional control means 20 (shown in block diagram in FIG. 2) for controlling the various elements and operations of the terminal 10.

As previously stated, the terminal 10 (FIG. 1) will operate online or off-line at the discretion of the operator. Because the controls and various communication techniques used with the terminal are not a part of this invention, any such conventional controls and techniques may be used. In general, an on-line transaction consists of the following five phases:

I. Input;

2. Communications;

3. Output processing;

4. Imprinting; and

5. Termination.

If an on-line transaction is to be effected, the terminal display 14 (FIGS. 1 and 2) will light up an indicator like Ready/Enter to indicate that it is ready to accept data. If a credit purchase is to be made, the operator will depress a credit key 22 (FIG. 3) on the keyboard means 16 to indicate to the terminal 10, the type of transaction to be entered, and then he enters the amount of the purchase on the numeric entry keys 24 and thereafter depresses an amount key 25. Depression of the amount key 25 causes the preceding data (amount) to be entered into an input/output buffer (not shown) which is part of the control means 20 shown in FIG. 2. The operator may then insert a credit card 26, having embossed printing thereon, into a slot 27 in the terminal 10 to pass under the card reader means- 18 (FIG. 1) to read the embossed Account Code on the card 26 and transfer the card to the position shown in dashed outline 26' by conventional transport wheels 28. The data read from the card 26 is conventionally transferred to control electronics 30, shown in FIG. 2. The operator also inserts a credit-card voucher 32 in the terminal 10 to slide between side frames 34 and 36 of the terminal 10 to receive the printing of the imprinting means 12, credit card 26, manually settable date wheels 38 and related retail outlet codes. For an on-line transaction, the operator will then depress a send key 40 (FIG. 3) to transmit the data entered upon the terminal 10 to a central communications center 42. If the purchase request and credit card are valid, an imprint signal will be sent from the center 42 to the control electronics causing the data entered upon the terminal to print on the voucher 32. Printing is effected by using a conventional, imprint roller means 44 which is traversed back and forth over the length of the entire voucher 32 by a lead screw 46 and associated drive means 48 shown only belts 50, 52, and pulleys 54 and 56. The terminal 10 has a cover (not shown) which is removed to facilitate the showing of the elements described herein. The amount of the purchase is displayed on the display means 14 along with any necessary instructions or lead through messages to assist an operator in utilizing the terminal 10 as is conventionally done. Because the general functioning of the terminal 10 along with the sequence of entering data into the terminal 10 may be conventional and is dependent upon the particular control means 20 utilized, no further discussion thereof is deemed necessary. After imprinting, the voucher 32 may be removed, and the credit card 26 is exited from the terminal 10 by the transport wheels 28 through a slot 58 in the terminal 10.

When an off-line transaction is to be conducted on the terminal 10, and a credit transaction is to be made, the operator merely depresses the credit key 22 to indicate the type of fixed transaction, enters the amount of the credit purchase and/or codes on the numeric entry keys 24, and then depresses the amount key 25 to indicate that the data entered is for the amount of the purchase. Thereafter, the credit card 26 and the voucher 32 are inserted into the terminal 10 as previously explained, and the operator depresses an imprint key 60 (FIG. 3) causing the amount of the credit purchase and/or codes to be set upon the imprinting means 12, and the roller means 44 to be traversed back and forth over the length of the voucher 32 to imprint the data thereon as previously explained.

The keyboard means 16 (FIG. 3) of the terminal 10 has thereon the usual clear and reset keys 62 and 64, respectively, and has two fixed transaction keys 66 and 68 (similar to the fixed transaction key 22 for credit) for a cash transaction and for a return transaction, respectively. There is also provision for manually entering the credit card number by depressing an account key 70 after the card number has been entered upon the numeric keys 24, and for similarly entering special codes via a code 72. Because these matters may be conventional, they are not described in detail.

The imprinting means 12 has a frame means designated generally as 74 in FIG. 4. The frame means 74 includes the side plates 76 and 78 which are positioned in spaced parallel relationship with each other, and a central plate 80 which is positioned therebetween and joined to the side plate 78 by a horizontally positoned, joining plate 82. One end of side plate 76 has a ninety degree section 84 integrally joined thereto as shown in FIG. 4. The side plate 76 and its section 84 and the side plate 78 are maintained in spaced parallel relationship with each other by the cross bars 79 and 81 shown in FIG. 6.

The imprinting means 12 also includes a plurality of digit amount wheel means designated generally as 86 which are rotatably mounted on a rod 88 whose ends are inserted into aligned holes 89 and 90 (FIG. 4) in the side plate 76 and central plate 80, respectively, and secured therein by set screws 87. The amount wheel means 86 includes digit amount wheel means designated generally as 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97 and 98 which are rotatably mounted on the rod 88 and are restrained from axial movement thereon by the C- washers 100 and 102 which fit into complementary annular grooves on the rod 88.

Each of the digit amount wheels means 91 through 98 has an indexing means 103 (FIG. 6) associated therewith, for indexing the associated digit amount wheel means one digit position each time the indexing means 103 is actuated by an associated actuating means to be later described herein. The indexing means 103 for each digit amount wheel means (91 through 98) includes a digit wheel 91' through 98', respectively, having embossed characters or digits 104 on the periphery thereof and a teeth means 106 which is formed on the side of the associated digit wheel, like 92. The teeth means 106 includes a plurality of teeth 108 having straight sides which converge to form an included angle 110 (FIG. 6) of approximately 60 at the tips of the teeth and also form an included angle 112 of approximately 90 at the base of the teeth. The teeth means 106 is exactly the same for each of the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98 and each teeth means 106 is formed on the same one side of the associated said digit amount wheel means.

The indexing means 103 (FIG. 6) also includes a pawl member, like 92-1 for each digit amount wheel means, like 92. The pawl members are numbered to correspond to their associated digit amount wheel means and are followed by a subscript l like 91-1, 92-1, etc., and because all the pawl members are alike, only a description of pawl member 92-1 (associated with digit amount wheel means 92) will follow. The pawl member 92-1 is generally U-shaped having a first end 1 14 and a second end 1 16 which are in spaced parallel relationship with each other as shown. The pawl member 92-1 has a bushing 1 18 integrally formed therewith, and the bushing 118 is pivotally mounted on a rod 120 to enable the pawl member 92-1 to pivot thereon. The rod 120 is positioned parallel to rod 88 which supports the amount wheel means 86, and the rod 120 has a first end 122 which is press fitted into a hole in the side plate 74 (FIG. 5) and the other end of the rod 120 has a reduced diameter portion 124 which passes through a hole in section 84 of the frame means 74. A C-washer 126, placed in a complementary annular groove on the reduced diameter portion 124 of the rod 120, retains the rod 120 in the frame means 74.

When the pawl member 92-1 is in the position shown in FIG. 6, its associated digit amount wheel means 92 is aligned with a print line 128 shown in FIGS. 1 and 8. In this position, the first end 114 of the pawl member 92-1 is parallel to one side of a tooth 108 and parallel to one side of an adjacent tooth 108 to partially align the associated digit amount wheel means 92 with reference to the print line 128. An aligner bar means designated generally is 130, and to be fully described later herein, is used to accurately align each of the digit amount wheel means 91-98 with the print line 128. As seen from FIG. 6, the pawl member 92-1 is pivotally mounted on the rod 120 between its ends 114 and 116 with the pivoting location being near the second end 116 of the pawl member 92-1. The pawl member 92-1 also has a generally vertically aligned slot 117 therein through which a pin 132 passes. The pin 132 is located between the ends 114 and 116 but closer to end 114 and is used to pivot the pawl member 92-1 about the rod 120. That which has been described so far relative to pawl member 92-1 is substantially identical for each of the pawl members 91-1, 93-1, 94-1, 95-1, 96-1, 97-] and 98-1. A

Each pawl member (91-1 through 98-1) has its own actuating means associated therewith to move the pawl member like 92-1 from a first position shown in solid outline in FIG. 6 to a second position shown in dashed outline therein. When moving from the first position to the second position, the pawl member 92-1 will be pivoted about rod 120 in a counterclockwise direction (as viewed in FIG. 6), and the first end 114 will move away from the tooth 108 which it is shown as contacting, and the second end 116 will approach the tooth 108' to contact it, causing the digit amount wheel means 92 to rotate in a clockwise direction. During the time of indexing, the aligner bar means 130 is out of engagement with the teeth 108. When the pawl member 92-1 reaches the position shown in dashed outline, the second end 116 will have partially rotated the digit amount wheel means 92 one digit position, and thereafter when the actuating means pivots the pawl member 92-1 in a clockwise direction, the first end 114 thereof will engage the next succeeding tooth 108" to push it to complete the indexing of the digit amount wheel means 92 one digit position relative to the print line 128. During the time that the pawl member 92-1 is being pivoted between the first and second positions, one end, either end 11 or 116, is positioned between two adjacent teeth 108 of the digit amount wheel means 92 to prevent it from backing up or skipping one digit position of indexing. Each time the pawl member 92-1 is pivoted between the first and second positions described, the associated digit amount wheel means 92 is indexed one digit position relative to the print line 128.

The actuating means alluded to earlier for pivoting the pawl member 92-1 between the first and a second positions shown in FIG. 6 is designated generally as 134. The actuating means 134 includes a lever 92-2 having one end pivotally mounted on a rod 136 and the remaining end pivotally joined to the pawl member 92-1 by the pin 132. The rod 136 is positioned parallel to rod and is mounted in the side plate 78 and the section 84 of the frame means 74 in exactly the same manner as was rod 120. Because the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98 are positioned close to one another, there was not enough room for the associated actuating means to be positioned next to one another due to the actuating means being larger than the associated said digit amount wheel means. Consequently, the actuating means for some of the associated digit amount wheel means 91 through 98 had to be modified slightly to provide for nestabil'ity of the actuating means and for compactness of the imprinting means 12. Whenever possible, the elements of the actuating means will be given the same basic number as the associated digit amount wheel means (91 through 98) and will be followed by a dash and a number, as for example 92-2 for lever 92-2 for the digit amount wheel means 92. The lever 92-2 is offset to accommodate the rod 120 and also has an offset portion 138 to which one end of a short rod 140 (FIG. 5) is fixed, and the remaining end of the rod 140 is fixed to one end of a lever 92-3 whose remaining end is pivotally mounted on the rod 136. The lever 92-3 is pivotally joined to the operating plunger 92-4 of an actuating solenoid 92-8.

Each time the actuating means 134 (FIG. 6) is energized, the associated indexing means 103 will index the associated digit amount wheel means 92 in the following manner. Prior to actuating the solenoid 92-8, the control electronics 30 (FIG. 3) will conventionally actuate the aligner bar means to take it out of engagement with the teeth 108 of the digit amount wheel means (91 through 98), and when the solenoid 92-8 is momentarily energized by the control electronics 30, the operating plunger 92-4 thereof will be withdrawn, pivoting the lever 92-3 in a counter-clockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 6. Because the levers 92-3 and 92-2 are interconnected by the rod 140, the lever 92-2 will also pivot in a counterclockwise direction on rod 136, thereby pivoting the pawl member 92-1 from the first position shown in solid outline in FIG. 6 to the second position shown in dashed outline, as previously explained. The solenoid 92-8 has a C-type washer 141 placed in a complementary annular groove on its plunger 92-4 to limit the movement of the plunger into the solenoid 92-8, and the elongated slot 117 (FIG. 6) also limits the movement of the pawl member 92-1 between said first and second positions. After the momentary energization of the solenoid 92-8, the pawl member 92-1 will be rotated in a clockwise direction (as viewed in FIG. 6) by a tension type spring 142, having one end secured to the second end 116 of the pawl member 92-1 and the second end secured to a rod 144, to return the pawl member 92-1 to the first position shown in solid outline to thereby complete the indexing of the digit amount wheel means 92 one digit position relative to the print line 128. The rod 144 is fixed in the frame means 74 and there is one such spring 142 for each of the pawl members 91-1 through 98-1 to operate upon the associated said pawl members as just described. Each time the solenoid 92-8 is momentarily energized, the associated digit amount wheel means 92 will be indexed one digit position relative to the print line 128.

The actuating means for the amount wheel means 93 is identical to and operates in the same way as the actuating means for amount wheel means 92, and includes the lever 93-2, lever 93-3, and the operating plunger 93-4 of a solenoid 93-8 as shown in FIG. 5. A rod 146 interconnects the levers 93-2 and 93-3 by the same technique already described in relation to the actuating means for digit amount wheel means 92.

The actuating means designated generally as 148 for digit amount wheel means 95 is shown in FIGS. 4, 5, and 7 and is substantially identical to the actuating means 134 for digit amount wheel means 92 already described. The actuating means 148 includes a lever 95-2 having one end pivotally joined to pawl member 95-1 and the other end pivotally mounted on the rod 136, and a lever 95-3 also mounted on rod 136 but axially displaced from lever 95-3 as shown in FIG. 5. The levers 95-2 and 95-3 are fixedly joined together by a rod 150 to enable them to be pivoted together. Lever 95-3 is pivotally joined to the operating plunger 95-4 of a solenoid 95-8, and the actuating means 148 operates in the same manner on its associated digit amount wheel means 95 as does actuating means 134 for digit amount wheel means 92 already described.

The actuating means 152 for amount wheel means 91 is identical to the actuating means 148 just described, and includes the lever 91-2 which has one end pivotally mounted on the rod 136, and the remaining end pivotally joined to pawl member 91-1. A lever 91-3 also has one end pivotally mounted on rod 136 but is axially displaced from lever 91-2. These two levers 91-2 and 91-3 are fixedly joined by a rod 154 to enable these levers to pivot together. The operating plunger 91-4 of a solenoid 91-8 is pivotally joined to the remaining end of lever 91-3 to index the digit amount wheel means 91 as previously described.

The actuating means designated generally as 156 for digit amount wheel means 94 is shown in FIGS. 4, and 7, and includes a lever 94-2 having one end pivotally joined to the rod 136 and the remaining end pivotally joined to its associated pawl member 94-1. The operating plunger 94-4 of a solenoid 94-8 is pivotally joined directly to the lever 94-2 which is identical to lever 95-2.

The actuating means designated generally 158 (FIGS. 4 and 5) for digit amount wheel means 96 is somewhat different in construction from the several actuating means already described; however, it operates in the same general manner. The pawl member 96-1 for digit amount wheel means 96 is the same as pawl members 91-] through 95-1 already described; however, pawl member 96-1 has a lever 96-5 integrally formed with a bushing 160 to which one end of a lever 96-5 is connected. A second lever 96-6 has one end integrally formed with a bushing 162 which is also rotatably mounted on the rod 120 but axially displaced from bushing 160, and a third lever 96-7 also has one end integrally formed with the bushing 162. A rod 164 rigidly interconnects the free ends of the levers 96-5 and 96-6 so that the lever 96-5 will be pivoted whenever the lever 96-6 is pivoted. The free end of lever 96-7 is pivotally joined to the operating plunger 96-4 of a solenoid 96-8.

The actuating means designate-d generally as 166 for the digit amount wheel means 98 (FIGS. 4, 5) is substantially the same as the actuating means 158 just described. The actuating means 166 includes a pawl member 98-1 which is pivotally mounted on the rod 120, as is the situation with all the pawl members, via a bushing 168 integrally formed on the pawl member 98-1. A second lever 98-5 has one end integrally joined to the bushing 168, and this lever is angularly offset relative to lever 96-5 to provide a clearance for the rod 164. The actuating means 166 also includes a lever 98-6 having one end integrally formed with a bushing 170 which is also rotatably mounted on the rod 120 but axially displaced from the second lever 98-5. A rod 172 rigidly interconnects the levers 98-5 and 98-6 so that lever 98-5 will be pivoted whenever lever 98-6 is pivoted. A third lever 98-7 also has one end integrally formed with the bushing 170, and its free end is pivotally joined to the operating plunger 98-4 of a solenoid 98-8. When the solenoid 98-8 is energized by the control electronics 30, lever 98-7 will be rotated in a counterclockwise direction (as viewed in FIG. 7) to pivot the associated pawl member 98-1 via the levers 98-6 and 98-5 and the interconnecting rod 172 as previously explained.

The actuating means designated generally as 173 for the digit amount wheel means 97 is shown in FIGS. 4 and 5 and includes the actuating plunger 97-4 of a solenoid 97-8. The operating plunger 97-4 is directly and pivotally joined to the pawl member 97-1 by a pin 132. Whenever the solenoid 97-8 is energized by the control electronics 30, the pawl member 97-1 will be pivoted to the first and second positions shown for pawl member 92-1 in FIG. 6

Locking collars 174 and 176 placed on rod 120 next to pawl member 91-1 and bushing 170, respectively, in cooperation with spacer bushings 178 and 180 maintain the pawl members 91-1 through 91-8 in alignment with their associated amount wheel means 91 through 98. Similarly, various spacer bushings like 182, 184, 186, 188 and 190 (FIG. 5), among others, are positioned on the rod 136 to maintain the levers like 91-2, 92-2, etc. in alignment with their associated digit amount wheel means 91, 92 etc. and to keep these levers operating in a plane which is perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of rod 88. Suitable locking collars 192 and 194 placed next to levers 91-3 and 95-3, respectively, prevent axial movement of the levers therebetween on the rod 136. The pawl members 91-1 through 98-1 are pivotally maintained in a plane perpendicular to the rod 88 by combs, like comb 195 placed between adjacent said pawl members as shown by the comb 195 which is placed between the pawl members 91-1 and 92-1 as shown in FIG. 6. Each of the combs 195 is fixed to a support member 197 which in turn is fixed to the frame means 74.

The aligner bar means 130, alluded to earlier is shown in FIGS. 6, 7 and 8, and includes an aligner bar 196 having one end 198 pivotally mounted on a rod 200 which is fixed in the side plate 76 and the central plate 80. The aligner bar 196 has a plurality of teeth 202 which are formed on the free end of the aligner bar 196. The teeth 202 are equidistantly spaced along the axial length of aligner bar 196 with one such tooth being provided for each teeth means 106 of the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98. When the aligner bar is in the position shown, the teeth 202 mesh with the teeth 108 of the teeth means 106 to prevent the associated digit amount wheel means 91 through 98 from rotating. The central plate 80 has a large hole 204 therein through which a rod 206 passes. The rod 206 is positioned parallel to rod 88 and is inserted into aligned holes in the aligner bar 196 as shown in FIG. 8 and is also fixed to the operating plunger 208 of a solenoid 210 which is fixed to the central plate 80 by a mounting plate 212. A tension-type spring 214 (FIG. 8) having one end attached to the rod 206 and the other end secured to the frame means 74 keeps the teeth 202 of the aligner bar 196 in engagement with the teeth 108 of the teeth means 106. An additional leaf spring 216 having the cross-sectional shape shown in FIG. 6 has one end fixed to the aligner bar 196 by fasteners 218, and the other end is arcuately shaped to contact the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98 as shown in FIG. 6. The leaf spring 216 has a length extending along the rod 88 to enable it to contact all the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98. The solenoid 210 has leads 220 connecting it to the control electronics 30, and when the solenoid 210 is energized thereby, the plunger 208 is withdrawn into the solenoid to thereby pivot the aligner bar 196 about rod 200 in a clockwise direction (as viewed in FIG. 8) to pull the teeth 202 out of engagement with the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98 permitting them to be individually indexed. While the aligner bar 196 is out of engagement with the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98, the leaf spring 216 is pushed slightly harder into resilient engagement with the said digit amount wheel means to help retain them in alignment with the print line 128 while they are individually indexed. When the solenoid 210 is deenergized, the spring 214 returns the aligner bar means 130 into engagement with the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98 to accurately align them with the print line 128.

Each of the digit amount wheels 91' through 98' has a lug 222 thereon (FIGS. 6 and 8) to cooperate with a switch means 224 (FIG. 6) provided for each of said digit amount wheels to indicate when each of the associated digit amount wheels is in a home position. When in the home position, a flat area 226, having no embossed digits or characters on the associated digit amount wheel, like 91', is aligned with the print line 128. The switch means 224 is fixed to the frame means 74 by a bracket 228 and includes a leaf spring 230 which has an arcuately shaped end 232 to contact the associated lug 222. A second leaf spring 234 having an electrical contact 236 thereon is normally spaced from a third leaf spring 238 having an electrical contact 240 thereon. An insulating contact 242 on leaf spring 230 isolates the leaf spring 230 from the leaf spring 234, and the leads 244 of the switch means 224 are connected to the control electronics 30.

The operation of the imprinting means 12 is as follows. After the terminal is turned on and during the normal ready-up cycle of the terminal 10, or when a clear 62 or a reset key 64 is depressed, solenoid 210 is energized to take the aligner bar means 130 out of engagement with the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98. Thereafter all of the solenoids 91-8 through 923-8 are repetitively energized to index the as sociated digit amount wheel means 91 through 98, respectively, in a clockwise direction (as viewed in FIG. 6) until the lug 222 on the associated digit amount wheel like 92 engages the leaf spring 230 of the associated switch means 224 forcing the contact 236 into engagement with the contact 240 on leaf spring 238 as shown to close a circuit to the control electronics 30, which in turn, prevents the associated solenoid like 92-8 from being further energized as part of the readyup cycle. When all the digit amount wheels 91 through 98 are indexed as just described, all said wheels will be positioned as shown in FIG. 6, and the blank portions 226 of each of said wheels willl be aligned with the print line 128. When this occurs, the imprinting means is ready to be indexed to reflect an amount entered on the keyboard means 16.

After a purchase amount and/or codes are entered upon the keyboard means 16, and the amount key 25 is depressed, the data therefor is transferred to the control electronics 30 as previously described. With the credit card 32 and a credit/sales voucher 32 (FIG. 1) in place as previously described, the imprinting on the voucher 32 is effected by a signal resulting from depressing imprint key 60 or by an on-line imprint signal (if on-line) from central communications 42. If an amount like $21.50 is to be entered on the digit amount wheel means 86, the first digit amount wheel 91' will be repetitively indexed four times. To accomplish this, the control electronics 30 will energize the solenoid 91-8 four times to align a 2 on digit amount wheel 91 with the print line 128. The solenoid 92-8 will similarly be energized three times by the control electronics 30 to align a l on digit amount wheel 92 with the print line 128. The solenoid 93-8 will be energized seven times by the control electronics 30 to align a 5 on digit amount wheel 93 with the print line 128, and similarly solenoid 94-8 will be energized two times to align a 0 on digit amount wheel 94' with the print line 128. The voucher 32 may be preprinted to show the location of the decimal point in the amount printed and to also show the codes set upon the digit amount wheels 91' through 98. Obviously, the location of the amount and codes and the number of digits allocated to amounts and codes is a matter of design or choice. The digits 104 on the digit amount wheels 91 through 98 are all identical and are positioned on the periphery of each said wheel in a zero to 9 series. It is necessary to index each digit amount wheel 91 through 98 two digit positions from the home position (represented by the flat areas 226) to reach the first digit in the series which digit is a zero. Because the control electronics 30 to effect energization of the solenoids 911-8 through 98-8 and solenoid 210 and the various elements like card reader means 18, roller means 44, etc., may be conventional, no further discussion is deemed necessary. Each of the solenoids 91-8 through 98-8 is connected by energizing leads like 245 shown in FIG. 7, and is mounted in a plate 247 secured to the frame means 74.

The imprinting means 12 is secured to the underside of plate 88 via fasteners (not shown) passing through plate 248 into the mounting holes 246 (FIG. 8) so that a character or digit 104 on a digit amount wheel 91' through 98' to be used for printing lies above the top surface of plate 248 as shown in FIG. 1. When all the flat surfaces 226 of the digit amount wheel means 91 through 98 are aligned with the print line 128, the

credit card 26 can be easily transferred over the said amount wheel means to the position shown in dashed outline 26.

What is claimed is:

1. In a computer access terminal having a keyboard means for entering data into said terminal, and an imprinting means for printing data on a record medium inserted in said terminal in response to data entered on said keyboard means and an imprint signal from said terminal;

said imprinting means comprising:

a frame means for securing said imprinting means to said terminal;

a plurality of amount wheel means rotatably mounted in said frame means for representing a multi-digit number;

indexing means for each amount wheel means for incrementally indexing the associated said amount wheel means one digit position relative to a print line each time the indexing means is actuated so that each amount wheel means is successively indexed a predetermined number of times to effect a predetermined number of digit positions of indexing corresponding to an associated digit entered on said keyboard means; and

actuating means for each said indexing means to actuate each said indexing means the associated said predetermined number of times upon the occurrence of said imprint signal;

said indexing means for each said amount wheel means comprising:

teeth means having a plurality of teeth on each amount wheel means;

a pawl means having first and second ends, and means for mounting said pawl means in said frame means at a point between its said first and second ends but close to said second end for pivotal movement between first and second positions relative to the associated said amount wheel means; and

a spring means;

the associated said actuating means, when energized,

being effective to pivot said pawl means to said second position against the bias of the associated said spring means to enable said second end of said pawl means to enter a space between two adjacent said teeth of the associated said amount wheel means to thereby enable said second end to partially index said associated amount wheel means one digit position in an indexing direction upon said pawl means reaching said second position, and with said spring means being effective to pivot said pawl means to said first position to enable said first end to engage a next succeeding said tooth to rotate said amount wheel means in said indexing direction to complete the indexing of said amount wheel means one digit position as said pawl means is returned to said first position by the associated said spring means upon each momentary energization of the associated said actuating means;

each said amount wheel means having a lug on the periphery thereof, and a switch means cooperating with said lug to close said switch means when said lug contacts said switch means to thereby deactivate the associated said actuating means to thereby align said amount wheel means in a home position with reference to said printing line prior to indexing each said amount wheel means said predetermined number of times to effect a predetermined number of digit positions of indexing corresponding to an associated digit entered on said keyboard means;

said teeth on each said amount wheel means being arranged on a side thereof in the form of a gear and each tooth having straight sides converging in a point and with the sides of two adjacent teeth being substantially perpendicular to each other;

each said pawl means being U-shaped with said first and second ends thereof being substantially parallel to each other and with said first end being substantially parallel to and contacting one side of a tooth on the associated said amount wheel means to align the associated said amount wheel means in an aligned position with reference to said printing line;

each said amount wheel means having a plurality of digits around a portion of the periphery thereof and also having a flat portion on said periphery; said terminal having slot therein to guide a credit card over said plurality of amount wheel means; each said amount wheel means having its associated flat portion aligned with said printing line when in said home position to enable said credit card to be moved in said slot over said plurality of amount wheel means when each said amount wheel means is in said home position; and

each said pawl means having a connection point located thereon between its associated first and second ends and being displaced from said point at which said pawl means is pivotally mounted;

said indexing means for each said amount wheel means including link means connecting each said pawl means at said connection point with its associated said actuating means. 2. The imprinting means as claimed in claim 1 in which at least one of said actuating means is connected directly to its associated pawl means at said connection point by said link means;

and in which at least one of said actuating means includes a lever having one end pivotally mounted in said frame means and the remaining end thereof pivotally joined to said connection point of the associated said pawl means by the associated said link means, and a solenoid whose operating plunger is pivotally connected to said lever between the ends thereof;

and in which at least one of said actuating means includes a solenoid and an operating plunger and a first lever having one end pivotally mounted in said frame means with the remaining end of said first lever being pivotally joined to said connection point of the associated said pawl means by the associated said link means, and further including a second lever having one end pivotally mounted in said frame means and the remaining end thereof having one end of a rod fixed thereto, with the remaining end of said rod being fixed to said first lever between the ends thereof, and with said operating plunger being pivotally joined to said second lever

Patent Citations
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US3279369 *Dec 21, 1964Oct 18, 1966Farrington Business MachImprinter
US3422754 *Feb 8, 1967Jan 21, 1969Zent Inst Iztchislitelna TechPrinting assembly controlled by electric pulses
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US3756147 *Jul 8, 1971Sep 4, 1973Gross Cash Registers LtdCoil spring biased printing wheels
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4142463 *Apr 27, 1977Mar 6, 1979Shinshu Seiki Kabushiki Kaisha And Kabushiki Kaisha Suwa SeikoshaPrint character selection mechanism
US4852482 *Dec 21, 1987Aug 1, 1989Pitney Bowes Inc.Automatic printwheel setting system
Classifications
U.S. Classification101/110, 101/45
International ClassificationG07F7/08
Cooperative ClassificationG06Q20/403, G07F7/0833, G07F7/08
European ClassificationG06Q20/403, G07F7/08A4, G07F7/08