US 3917924 A
An apparatus operable by a coded card for controlling the operation of a photostatic machine for indicating the number of copies made.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
' United States Patent [1 1 Linne 1 Nov. 4, 1975 CONTROL AND COUNTING DEVICE FOR COPYING MACHINE  Inventor: Burton Dale Linne, Chicago, Ill.
 Assignee: Design America Corporation, Chicago, 111.
22 Filed: Jan. 2, 1975 211 App]. No.: 537,907
Related US. Application Data  Continuation of Ser. No. 347,835, April 4, 1973.
 Field of Search 235/92 AC, 92 CT, 92 FL, 235/92 SB, 61.11 C, 61.6 R, 61.6 L, 61.7 B; 340/149 A; 200/46, 42 R  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,817,824 12/1957 Albright ..235/61.7B
3,427,441 2/1969 Swords 235/92 AC 3,436,530 4/1969 Faude.... 235/92 CT 3,510,630 5/1970 Ryan 235/92 AC 3,627,993 12/1971 Cooper 235/61.7 B 3,631,506 12/1971 Nielsen 235/92 FL 3,701,100 10/1972 Yarbrough. 235/61.7 B 3,786,421 1/1974 Wostl 235/61.7 B
Primary ExaminerDaryl W. Cook Attorney, Agent, or FirmLeo J. Aubel  ABSTRACT An apparatus operable by a coded card for controlling the operation of a photostatic machine for indicating the number of copies made.
2 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures CONTROL AND COUNTING DEVICEFOR COPYING MACHINE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION A number of devices are known in the prior art for controlling and counting the number of copies made by photostatic copying machines. Such control and counting devices are adaptable to be connected to the copies to control and monitor the operation of the copying machine or copier. The purpose of such devices is to limit the number of persons using the copy machine and to count the number of copies made by each person or department during a given period.
For example, persons authorized to make copies on a particular machine are issued a key which will actuate the copy controller to permit them to make copies on the machine. All unauthorized persons, i.e., those persons not having keys, are prevented from using the machine.
It has been found that such controls are very effective to limit the use of each copier and to reduce the number of copies made by each copier without impairing the proper utilization of the machine. While such prior art devices have proven quite useful, they have the disadvantage that they are key operated; and, unauthorized duplicate keys can easily be made, thus defeating the principle purpose of the device. Further, keys are frequently lost or misplaced.
Further, prior art control devices, while operating essentially satisfactorily, have generally been relatively expensive, hence many potential users cannot afford to use them.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention provides a more comprehensive control of copies made from a copying machine by providing a card controlled apparatus wherein only those who have the properly coded cards can actuate the apparatus to have copies made by the assigned copying machine. Counters are provided in the apparatus which are selectively operated to count the number of copies made with the selectively coded cards.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a card controlled apparatus which is inexpensive in manufacture, relatively simple in operation, and has a high degree of reliability.
It is yet another object of the present invention to provide a card controlled apparatus which is relatively small and yet obtains concentration of all the control and monitoring functions at one point.
The foregoing and other objects and features of the invention will be apparent from the following more particular description of the drawings wherein:
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS 4 FIG. I is an isometric view of one embodiment of the invention for controlling the operation of a copy machine and having four separate counters for counting the number of copies made;
FIG. 2 is a modification of the structure of FIG. ll wherein the counters are resettable to zero;
FIG. 3 is another modification of the invention wherein slave units can be connected to the master unit of FIG. I to monitor a larger number of users;
FIG. 4 is a view of a card for controlling the apparatus of FIGS. 1 and 2 and 3 showing embossings which trigger switches in the associated electrical circuitry for the devices of FIG. 1, 2 and 3; and,
FIG. 5 shows an electrical circuit used in the embodiment of FIGS. 1-3 to provide the electrical triggering and switching.
DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION As mentioned above, FIG. 1 shows an isometric view of a card controlled apparatus, device or unit 11 including four separate counters l3, 15, 17 and 19 which are actuated by cards having four different coding arrangements.
To operate the device, it is suitably connected to any one of a number of well known photostatic copying machines (not shown) as will be described hereinafter with reference to FIG. 5. The apparatus of FIG. I in essence, switches the copy machine to an ON condition when a card (see FIG. 4) with the properly embossed coding is inserted in the associated slot 21. A suitable bulb I4 lights when the control device 11 is activated. As will be more fully explained, properly coded cards will turn on the copy machine, and each card of a given card of a given code will cause a particular counter to count and register the number of copies that are being made by the copy machine.
It should be understood at the outset that the counters of the invention may be commercially available counters and in one particular embodiment, the counters are made by the Veeder Root Corp.
FIG. 2 shows a card controlled device 12 essentially the same as control device 11 in FIG. 1 with the exception that each of the individual counters in device 12 may be reset such as by depressing the bar generally labeled 23. An advantage of the apparatus of FIG. 1 is that it can simplify the accounting involved in keeping track of the copies made during each accounting period.
The apparatus of FIG. 1 is a master unit, that is, it can be used in conjunction with slave units 25, 27 and 29, such as shown in FIG. 3. The master unit 11 can be electrically connected to operate eight counters, generally labeled 31, 33 and 35 respectively in each of three or more slave units 25, 27 and 29.
The electrical apparatus used with the apparatus of FIGS. 1, 2 and 3 is shown in FIG. 5.
Referring to FIG. 5, the electrical circuit of the card sensing unit as indicated by the numeral 41 comprises three groups of switches generally labeled 43, 45, and 47, which will be described more fully hereinbelow. The circuit 21 is connected to a control box 49, indicated by the dotted lines, and which may be either included or housed in the control device 11, or the control box 49 may comprise a unit which is suitably mounted in the copy machine. The card sensing unit 41 is electrically and selectively connected to the counters 13, 15, I7 and 19 as will be described more fully hereinbelow.
The card sensing assembly 41 includes a first set of enabling switches 43 individually labeled S044. A second set of switches, group selection switches, comprise switches 55-89, and a third set of switches SIG-S17. The switches are shown in a normally closed or normally energized condition.
Refer first to the set of switches, labeled 43. The individual switches are single pole, single throw or ONI- OFF type switches with one stationary contact providing a conducting condition and the other associated stationary contact providing an open condition. Switches S1 and S2 are electrically connected to each other as are switches S3 and S4 for purposes to be described. Note also jumpers J1, J2 and J3 which are selectively connectable to the various stationary contacts a-y.
The second set of switches, generally labeled 45, also comprise ON/OFF type or single pole, single throw switches wherein in a first condition, the switches are electrically closed and in' the opposite position, the switches are electrically open.
Likewise, the third set of switches, generally labeled 47, are also of the same type as switches 43 and 45.
A control box 49 includes a step down transformer T1 having a primary winding 32 which provides 24 volts across its secondary winding 34, and thence through leads 51- and 53 to the card controlled apparatus. The step down transformer T1 has its primary winding 32 connected to the 115 volt current directly orthrough the copy machine.
In operation, the card is inserted in the slot 21, and the embossing 22 on the card 20 actuates the enabling card switches 43 to operate a position such as shown to close selected ones of switches S-S4. Thus, the embossings 22 on the card 20 will cause an electrical path to be established such as shown in FIG. 5. The jumpers J 1, J2 and J3 can be connected in the code combination desired such that only that combination of desired switches S0-S4 is closed by a particular card 20.
Thus, when the enabling switches S0-S4 are closed in proper configuration by the associated card 20, a circuit is completed from secondary winding 34 of transformer Tl through relay coil 36, lead 53 through switches S0S4 to lead 51 and back to transformer secondary 34. Relay Kl will thus be energized and close its contacts 55.
A lamp 14 is connected across the coil 36 of relay K1 such that when coil 36 is energized the lamp 14 will light indicating that the card controlled device 11 has been enabled.
When relay K1 is energized, its contacts 55, 57 59, and 61 close and 24 volts is available on lead 71 connecting through closed contact 55 to lead 73 and the lower terminal of secondary winding 34. Note however that contact 63 of relay K2 is still open. Also, in the embodiment shown, relay Kl switch contacts 57, 59 and 61 are not used, but for additional control are available and function as necessary.
When the copy machine processes a piece of paper, that is, the copy machine starts to make a copy, a momentary signal or pulse is developed by the copy machine which is coupled through leads 66 and 68 to energize coil 69 of relay K2. When coil 69 of relay K2 is momentarily energized, relay contacts 63 of relay K2 are caused to close thereby completing an electrical current path from secondary winding 34 through lead 71, contacts 55 of relay Kl, lead 71, contacts 63 of relay K2 and lead 70 to switch group 45.
At the same time, the embossings 22 on card 20 actuate switch group 41, comprising switches S10-S17. The card will actuate one of the switches S10-S17 to a position to close; for example, note in FIG. 5 that switch S10 is actuated to contact stationary contact v. Accordingly, a current path can be traced from lead through diode 77 and counter 13, lead 76, through contact v of switch 10 and the switches S11 to 517 to lead 51 and back to secondary winding 34.
The counters 13, 15, 17 and 19 are connected respectively to contacts v, x, z and bb of switches S10, S11, S12 and S13 respectively. Thus, one of the counters 13, 15, 17 or 19 will be activated dependent on which one of switches S10-S13 is actuated.
The activated counter will thus effect one count in response to each pulse signal from the copy machine to indicate or record that a copy has been made.
Depending on which one of switches S5-S9 is activated in switch group 45, one of the slave units 25, 29 or 33 is energized. Each of the slave units 25, 29 or 33 has eight separately energizable counters. Thus, dependent on which one of the switches S10-S17 in counter selector switch group 47, one of the eight counters in a particular slave unit will be actuated to count the number of copies being made.
While the invention has been particularly shown and described with reference to preferred embodiments thereof, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that various changes in form and details made be made therein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.
What is claimed is:
1. A card only controlled apparatus for controlling copies to be made by a photostatic copying machine and for counting the copies made by the machine, said apparatus operable in response to cards having a defined coding thereon, comprising, in combination, means for connecting the apparatus to the associated copying machine, receptacle means for receiving a selected one of the cards; first switch means operable only by a selected card having the defined coding thereon for causing the machine to permit a copy to be made, a plurality of counter means each responsive to a specific defined coding on a card, second switch means operable by a card with the specific defined coding thereon for enabling a particular one of said counters to be activated, and the particular one of said counters being activated in response to a signal developed when a copy is made by the copying machine, whereby a defined coding on each card causes the machine to permit a copy to be made and a selected counter to count responsive to a specific defined cod ing on said cards.
2. An apparatus as in claim 1 further including means H- for resetting the counters as desired for card sensing.