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Publication numberUS3923267 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 2, 1975
Filing dateJun 3, 1974
Priority dateJun 3, 1974
Publication numberUS 3923267 A, US 3923267A, US-A-3923267, US3923267 A, US3923267A
InventorsEckerd Steve S, Gray Darby A, Maggio Anthony F, Markowitz Ivan N
Original AssigneeHoneywell Inf Systems
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Ribbon feed mechanism for feeding type ribbon on type ribbon spools
US 3923267 A
Abstract
A printing apparatus having an electrically controlled carrier assembly for driving drive spools which engage type ribbon spools used for winding type ribbon from one type ribbon spool to another. The carrier assembly drives one of the drive spools in one direction winding ribbon on the ribbon spool. When the ribbon spool has been unwound from the opposite ribbon spool, the apparatus receives an electrical signal. The carrier assembly then disengages the drive spool, rotates and drives the other drive spool in an opposite direction. This operation is repeated continuously as the apparatus winds the ribbon from one ribbon spool to the other.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [191 Eckerd et al.

[ RIBBON FEED MECHANISM FOR FEEDING TYPE RIBBON ON TYPE RIBBON SPOOLS [75] Inventors: Steve S. Eckerd; Ivan N. Markowitz;

Anthony F. Maggio, all of Oklahoma City; Darby A. Gray, Norman, all of Okla.

[73] Assignee: Honeywell Information Systems,

Inc., Waltham, Mass.

[22] Filed: June 3, 1974 [21] Appl. No.: 475,550

{52] US. Cl. 242/67.4 [51] Int. CI. 8651-! 17/02 [58] Field of Search 242/67.4, 20]; 197/160 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,583,385 l/l952 Miller 242/67.4 3,632.052 l/l972 Read 3.722,822 3/1973 Wallace 242/67.4

FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 849.858 8/l939 France 242/67.4

[ 5] Dec. 2, 1975 350,690 7/l937 Italy 242/67.4

Primary Examiner-Edward J. McCarthy Attorney. Agent, or FirmR0nald T. Reiling [5 7] ABSTRACT A printing apparatus having an electrically controlled carrier assembly for driving drive spools which engage type ribbon spools used for winding type ribbon from one type ribbon spool to another. The carrier assembly drives one of the drive spools in one direction winding ribbon on the ribbon spool. When the ribbon spool has been unwound from the opposite ribbon spool, the apparatus receives an electrical signal. The carrier assembly then disengages the drive spool, rotates and drives the other drive spool in an opposite direction. This operation is repeated continuously as the apparatus winds the ribbon from one ribbon spool to the other.

5 Claims, 2 Drawing Figures US. Patent Dec. 2, 1975 Sheet 1 of 2 3,923,267

US. Patent Dec. 2, 1975 Sheet 2 of2 3,923,267

N 0% 90 0% WM bk Wm mm E. 3 2w mm 3 m@ ov\m mm 3 .2

QM wm Nv mw RIBBON FEED MECHANISM FOR FEEDING TYPE RIBBON ON TYPE RIBBON SPOOLS BACKGROUND OF INVENTION This invention relates generally to improvements in a printing apparatus and more particularly, but not by way of limitation, to a ribbon feed mechanism for electrically controlling a carrier assembly used in winding ribbon from one ribbon spool to'another ribbon spool.

In a prior art printing apparatus, the ribbon feed mechanism uses an operation of advancing and reversing ribbon by using drive spools with ratchet teeth. An actuator arm is spring-biased against one drive spool and is moved back and forth by a solenoid. A stop is spring-biased against the ratchet teeth of the ribbon spool so that the spool rotates only on the forward stroke of the actuator arm. When the end of the ribbon is reached, a wiper drops from the undriven ribbon spool. The wiper rotates into the path of the moving actuator arm and acts as a fulcrum for the actuator arm to pivot about on the return stroke. The actuator arm then pivots against the opposite drive spool and begins driving it. The ribbon then advances inthe opposite direction pulling the wiper back into the ribbon spool.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION The present invention has no cams, slides, followers, overcenter mechanisms, or ratchet assemblies which are characteristic of the presently used ribbon feed mechanisms. The elimination of these characteristics, mechanical components and the substitution of electrical controls result in a more reliable ribbon feed mechanism which can be used in high speed printing apparatus.

The improved printing apparatus includes a base plate, a type ribbon wound on type ribbon spools, a first drive spool and a second drive spool engaging the ribbon spools for winding the ribbon from one ribbon spool to the other ribbon spool, a carrier assembly for engaging and rotatably driving the first drive spool, disengaging the drive spool and engaging and rotatably driving the second drive spool, an electric motor having a motor shaft rotatably driving said carrier assembly, and a contact board in contact with the first drive spool and the second drive spool for electrically signaling the motor when the ribbon on the ribbon spool is unwound so that the direction of rotation of the motor shaft is reversed, thereby reversing the' direction of rotation of the carrier assembly.

Advantages and objects of the invention will be evident from the following detailed description when read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings which illustrate an embodiment of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the improved printing apparatus. r

FIG. 2 is a cross-section of a side view of the carrier assembly and drive spool.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT In FIG. 1 the printing apparatus is designated by a general reference character 10. Apparatus includes a type ribbon cartridge 12 which is seated on a first drive spool 14 and a second drive spool 16, a carrier assembly 17 for driving the first drive spool 14 and the second drive spool 16, a base plate 18, a ribbon guide 20 pivotally attached to the base plate 18, a switch assembly 22 attached to the base plate 18 and electrically connected to a motor 24. The motor 24 has a motor shaft 26 attached to the carrier assembly 17.

The type ribbon cartridge 12 includes a type ribbon 28 attached to type ribbon spools 30. The spools 30 have centering notches 32 at the bottom portion thereof. The cartridge 12 also includes apertures 34 into which the first drive spool 14 and the second drive spool 16 are inserted. Centering notches 32 serve to properly align the type ribbon spools 30 on the first drive spool 14 and the second drive spool 16.

The carrier assembly 17 includes a carrier housing 36 containing a pinion gear 38 which is attached to'the motor shaft 26. The pinion gear 38 drives a first planet gear 40 and a second planet gear 42. Secured to the top of the planet gears are thrust washers 44.

The first drive spool 14 and the second drive spool 16 include annular base 46 with a cylindrical housing 48 attached to a center portion thereof. The annular base 46 includes an aperture 47, a notched shoulder 52 around the circumference of the base 46, and gear teeth 54 adjacent to the shoulder 52. The housing 48 is rotatably mounted on a post 51 which is secured to the base plate 18. The housing 48 includes a slot 49 therein, and a centering ramp 50 which engages the centering notches 32 of the ribbon spools 30 whenthe ribbon cartridge 12 is attached thereto. A spring-biased wiper 56 positioned inside aperture 47 and slot 49 is pivotally secured to post 51.

The switch assembly 22 includes a contact board 58 secured to the base plate 18 and positioned between the plate 18 and the drive spools. The board 58includes pear shaped electrical contact pads 60 which are preferably gold plated copper conductors. The pads 60 are positioned underneath the apertures 47 and around the circumference of the drive spools so that when wiper 56 drops through the aperture 47 it will contact the pad 60. At the neck of the pear shaped pads 60 are soldering posts 62 for connecting electrical circuitry used to signal the motor 24. The electrical circuitry is not shown in this figure.

FIG. 2 is a more detailed drawing of a cross-section of the carrier assembly 17 engaging the first drive spool 14. The bottom line of the ribbon cartridge 12 is shown in its proper position when seated on the drive spool, but the ribbon 28 and the ribbon spools 30 are not shown.

Motor shaft 26, of the motor 24, is shown secured to the pinion gear 38 which is held in place by a retaining ring 64. The pinion gear 38 is shown meshing with the first planet gear 40 at a position 66. The first planet gear 40 is held in the carrier housing 36 by planet pin 68 and engages the gear teeth 54 of the first drive spool 14 at a position 69.

The drive spool 14 is shown secured to the post 51 by retaining ring 70. The wiper 56 is positioned inside the slot 49 of the housing 48 and inside aperture 47 of the base 46. The wiper 56 includes a vertical arm 72 and a horizontal arm 74. The vertical arm has a finger 76 which extends outwardly from the slot 49. The horizontal arm 74 includes an end portion 78 which is bent at right angles to the arm 74. One end of a wiper spring 80 is positioned parallel to the arm 74, rests on the end portion 78 and biases the arm 74 downward toward the contact pad 60. The wiper 56 is pivotally attached to the post 51 by a wiper pivot pin 82. A bottom portion 84 of the arm 74 is used to contact the pads 60. The

contact pads 60 are shown as part of the top of the contact board 58.

Operation In operation, the electrically controlled ribbon feed mechanism works as follows.

The ribbon cartridge 12 is seated on the first drive spool 14 and the second drive spool 16. The housings 48 are inserted into the ribbon spools 30 aided by the centering ramps 50 and the centering notches 32. As the cartridge 12 is inserted, the ribbon 28 being wrapped around the ribbon spools 30 comes into contact with the finger 76 of the wiper 56. The wiper 56 being pivotally mounted and positioned inside the aperture 47 and slot 49 is forced further back into the slot 49 as the ribbon 28 bares against the finger 76. When the cartridge 12 is seated on top of the drive spools and the ribbon 28 is properly positioned on the ribbon guide 20, the printing apparatus is then ready to be used.

Using the illustration in FIG. 1, it can be seen that if the ribbon cartridge 12 is seated on the drive spools, theribbon spool 30 attached to the first drive spool 14 has been unwound. The wiper 56 being spring-biased has dropped through aperture 47 and is in contact with the contact pad 60, sending an electrical signal to the electrical circuitryto tell the motor 24 to rotate the carrier assembly 17.

The motor shaft 26 rotates the carrier assembly 17 toward the first drive spool 14. The first planet gear 40 engages the first drive spool 14 and begins driving it. At this time, thrust washer 44 engages the notched shoulder 52 of the drive spool 14, maintaining the gear teeth alignment along the pitc'hline. As the spool 14 turns, the ribbon 28 begins to wind around the ribbon spool 30. The ribbon contacts the finger 76 and forces the wiper 56 back .into the slot 49 thus pivoting the horizontal arm 74 upward and away from the contact pad 60 and into the aperture 47.

The drive spool 14 continues to wind the ribbon 28 on the ribbon spool 30 until the ribbon 28 is unwound from the opposite spool 30. The wiper 56 in the unwound spool 30, now drops through the aperture 47 of the second drive spool 16 and contact is made with the contact pad 60, transmitting the electric signal to the circuitry which controls motor 24. When the motor 24 receives a reversing signal, the motor shaft 26 disengages the carrier assembly 17 from the first drive spool 14. and rotates the carrier assembly 17 toward the second drive spool 16. The second planet gear 42 now engages the second drive spool 16 and begins driving it in the opposite direction. As the spool 16 turns, the ribbon begins to wind onto the ribbon spool 30 and the finger 76 of the wiper 56 is forced back into the slot 49. The drive spool 16 continues to wind the ribbon 28 on the ribbon spool 32 until the ribbon is unwound from the other spool 32. The operation then repeats itself.

Changes may be made in the construction and arrangement of parts or elements of the various embodiments as disclosed herein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined in the following claims.

What is claimed is:

1. In a printing apparatus having a base plate, a type ribbon wound on type ribbon spools, afirst drive spool and a second drive spool engaging the ribbon spools for winding the ribbon from one ribbon spool to the other ribbon spool, the improvement comprising:

drive means for engaging and rotatably driving the first drive spool, disengaging the first drive spool, engaging and rotatably driving the second drive spool;

an electric motor having a motor shaft rotatably driving said drive means; and

an electrical contact board disposed between the base plate and the first and second drive spools, and electrically connected to said motor, said electrical contact board in contact with the first drive spool and the second drive spool for producing an electrical signal when the ribbon on the ribbon spool is unwound so that the direction of rotation of the motor shaft is reversed, thereby reversing the direction of rotation of said drive means.

2. The apparatus as defined in claim 1 wherein said drive means is a carrier assembly comprising:

a carrier housing;

a pinion gear attached to said housing and rotatably driven by said motor shaft;

a first planet gear attached to said housing and rotatably driven by said pinion gear; and

a second planet gear attached to said housing and rotatably driven by said pinion gear.

3. The apparatus as defined in claim 2 wherein rotation of the motor shaft in one direction pivots said first planet gear on said carrier assembly into driving engagement with said first drive spool, whereas rotation of the motor shaft in the other direction pivots said second planet gear on said carrier assembly into driving engagement with said second drive spool.

4. The apparatus as defined in claim 3 wherein said first planet gear and second planet gear include thrust washers secured thereto, said washers having a greater diameter than said first and second planet gears so that when said'first and second planet gears mesh with said first and second drive spools, said thrust washers engage said drive spools aligning the meshing gear teeth along the proper pitchline.

5. In a printing apparatus having a base plate, a type ribbon wound on type ribbon spools, a first drive spool and a second drive spool engaging the ribbon spools for winding the ribbon from one ribbon spool to the other ribbon spool, the drive spools housing spring-biased wipers which are held in place by the ribbon as it is wrapped around the ribbon spools, the improvement comprising:

a carrier assembly for engaging and rotating the first drive spool, disengaging the first drive spool, engaging and rotating the second drive spool, the assembly comprising: a a carrier housing;

a pinion gear attached to said housing;

a first planet gear attached to said housing and rotatably driven by said pinion gear, said first planet gear engaging and rotatably driving the first drive spool;

a second planet gear attached to said housing and rotatably driven by said pinion gear, said second planet gear engaging and rotatably driving the second drive spool;

an electric motor having a motor shaft rotatably driving said pinion gear; and

motor so that the direction of rotation of said motor shaft is reversed thereby reversing the direction of rotation of said carrier assembly.

l l l

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2583385 *Jan 11, 1947Jan 22, 1952Morse Instr CompanyAutomatically operated film winding mechanism
US3632052 *Sep 16, 1969Jan 4, 1972Mohawk Data Sciences CorpReversible ribbon feed device
US3722822 *Dec 8, 1969Mar 27, 1973Wallace STape take up drive assembly
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3977620 *Sep 29, 1975Aug 31, 1976Mohawk Data Sciences CorporationReversible drive for flexible web
US4046334 *Nov 3, 1975Sep 6, 1977Ricoh Co., Ltd.Automatic reversal mechanism
US4448364 *Apr 9, 1982May 15, 1984Bell & Howell CompanyReversible ribbon drive
US4448370 *Oct 15, 1981May 15, 1984Olympus Optical Company LimitedTape transport mechanism
US4673304 *Aug 13, 1985Jun 16, 1987Sanders Associates, Inc.Thermal printer ribbon cartridge for wide ribbons
US4850725 *Jun 15, 1988Jul 25, 1989Ncr CorporationUnidirectional ribbon drive mechanism
US4941762 *Jan 27, 1989Jul 17, 1990Seiko Epson CorporationSwitching mechanism for a paper holding roller of a printer
US5476330 *Sep 20, 1994Dec 19, 1995Alps Electric Co., Ltd.Ink ribbon cassette for thermal transfer printer
EP0026275A2 *Jul 10, 1980Apr 8, 1981International Business Machines CorporationPrinter having a print ribbon feed device
EP0036308A1 *Mar 13, 1981Sep 23, 1981Nec CorporationA cartridge for an inked ribbon for an impact printer
WO2002075738A1 *Mar 18, 2002Sep 26, 2002Arrufat RichardDevice for driving the hub of a tape cartridge, associated cartridge and print equipment using said device
Classifications
U.S. Classification242/534.2, 400/219.4, 242/333, 400/225, 242/538, 242/545, 400/221.2, 400/219.1
International ClassificationB41J33/34, B41J33/14, B41J32/00, B41J33/514
Cooperative ClassificationB41J33/514, B41J32/00, B41J33/34
European ClassificationB41J33/34, B41J32/00, B41J33/514