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Publication numberUSRE27455 E
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 1, 1972
Filing dateDec 23, 1970
Priority dateDec 23, 1970
Publication numberUS RE27455 E, US RE27455E, US-E-RE27455, USRE27455 E, USRE27455E
InventorsJohn C. Lewis
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Brush machinery and brush constructions
US RE27455 E
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Aug. 1, 1972 J. c. LEWIS, JR

BRUSH MACHINERY AND BRUSH coNsTRUcTIoNs 5 sheets-Sheet 1 'original Filed sept. 12, 196e 7A lo" W diag.

` Allg. 1, 1972 J, C, LEWlS, JR Re.

BRUSH MACHINERY AND BRUSH CONSTRUCTIONS Original Filed Sept. 12, 1966 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 rm/E/v fog -l1g. 1, 1972 v 1 CI Ewls, JR l RC. 27,455

BRUSH MACHINERY AND rBRUSH coNsTRucToNs 5 sheets-sheet s Original Filed Sept. l2, 1966 IN1/EN ro R I.Al-lg. 1, 1972 1 C LEWIS, JR Rt. BRUSH MACHINERY AND BRUSH CONSTRUCTIONS I Original Filed Sept. l2, 1966 5 Sheets-Sheet 4.

Allg. l, 1972 1 C, L E- WlsI JR R.

BRUSH MACHINERY AND BRUSH CONSTRUCTIOS Original Filed Sept. 12, 1966 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 I INVENTOR. ,4 y V k/oa ewzlg ./f:

United States Patent O 27,455 BRUSH MACHINERY AND BRUSH CONSTRUCTIONS John C. Lewis, Jr., Middlebury, Vt., assignor to Tucel Industries, Inc., Middlebury, Vt. Original No. 3,471,202, dated Oct. 7, 1969, Ser. No. 578,840, Sept. 12, 1966. Application for reissue Dec. 2s, 1970, ser. No. 101,202

Int. Cl. A46d 1/08 U.S. Cl. 300-2 35 Claims Matter enclosed in heavy brackets appears in the original patent but forms no part of this reissue specification; matter printed in italics indicates the addition made by reissue.

ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE This invention, consisting of a new and useful brushmaking apparatus, allows tufted brush components to be manufactured having pretrimmed synthetic filament tufts. Said apparatus is capable of picking and trimming all the desired tufts required in a single brush construction simultaneously, and further, simultaneously inserting all the tufts into the construction. The apparatus comprises a suitable filament stock box for dispensing cut-to-length synthetic filament and a picking unit containing tuft-forming devices which when inserted into said stock box Will pick and trim the desired tuft configuration of any brush component.

This invention relates to new and useful brush-making machinery. More specifically, it is concerned with machinery for continuously fabricating modular brush components. It also includes novel brush constructions and methods of manufacture.

The brushv industry and the brush-making art during the last fifty years has remained, for the most part, unchanged. The only major changes taking place have been in the substitution of synthetic monof'ilaments (thermoplastic fibres, i.e., nylon monofilament) for the vegetable and hair fibres previously employed. The emphasis has been on finding ways to substitute directly the synthetic for the natural, utilizing the same brush-making equipment, i.e., stapling machinery and little or no effect placed upon improving the methods and machinery used. Great strides have been made wherein two or three brushes can be stapled simultaneously, however, it still requires one picking and stapling cycle for each fibre tuft staple-set in the brush back. In this area, there has been no advancement toward finding a way of placing all the desired tufts in a brush back simultaneously; and performing this feat in the same amount of time required to pick and staple-set one fibre tuft employing conventional brush machinery.

The need to improve the machinery for fabricating brush components can be illustrated by comparing and describing conventional brush-making machinery with the machinery of this invention. The brush-making machinery of this invention differs from ordinary brush machinery in that it employs a new method of picking fibre tufts. The conventional stapling machine employs a picker which removes a fibre tuft from a stock or feed box by first entering the stock box approximately at its midsection (lateral to the parallel fibre) and picking a given amount of fibre at the fibres midsection. The picker then proceeds to transport the predetermined v01- ume of parallel fibre to a means for doubling the fibre at its midsection (prior to stapling), thus resulting in a tuft having a U-shape wherein both ends of each individ-V ual fibre are located at the working tip of the resultant Re. 27,455 Reissued Aug. 1, 1972 tuft. A staple or [anochor] anchor (wire member) is then inserted through the U-shaped loop land the tuft then forced into a predrilled hole in a brush back. Each tuft is formed in this manner one after another until the necessary number of holes have been filled.

The picking device of the machinery of this invention works on an entirely different principle. The picker or picking unit enters the fibre stock box from the end (longitudinal to the fibre) and engages the fibre from the end, thus instantly forming, a fibre tuft. The fibre employed in forming tufts in this manner is one-half the original length of the fibre required using the conventional picking method. The instantly formed fibre tuft is then automatically inserted into a brush back. The resultant fibre tuft can be anchored in many Ways; i.e., heat sealed, set in epoxy, and the like. However, the preferred method is to heat seal the fibre tuft. This can be done either prior to inserting the tuft into the brush back 0r after inserting the tuft through a portion of the brush back. Fibre tufts formed in this manner are anchored securely within the brush back and can not be removed.

Since, when forming tufts using this new and novel method of picking, there is no requirement for doubling the fibre prior to insertion into the brush back, tufts so formed in accordance with this invention require no trimming. This results in an appreciable savings to the brushmaker. A second economic savings is also realized, that being the elimination of the staple or anchor.

It is of particular importance in this invention that the picking device employed operates in such a manner that at least two fibre tufts are simultaneously formed. However, the preferred cycle of picking is one in which a complete brush component is formed simultaneously by employing a series of picking devices (hereinafter referred to as a picking unit) set in a prearranged pattern and heat sealing al1 the fibre tufts instantly, thus forming a brush in the same cy-cling time it takes to pick and staple-set one fibre tuft using the conventional machinery.

Objects and advantages of the invention will be set forth in part hereinafter and in part will be obvious herefrom, or may be learned by practice with the invention, the same being realized and attained by means of the methods, combinations, compositions and improvements pointed out in the appended claim.

The invention consists in the novel steps, methods, combinations, compositions and improvements herein shown and described.

The objects of this invention will now be described. While the invention is primarily concerned with new and novel brush machinery, it should be realized that the principles of this invention are attained only through the novel method of picking and forming fibre tufts, and these principles are applicable to situations wherein: (1) single fibre tufts are formed, (2) multiple fibre tufts are formed, (3) complete brush components are simultaneously formed, and (4) continuous modular brush comoponents are formed.

It is, therefore, an object of this invention to provide new and useful brush-making machinery. Another object of this invention is to provide an automatic brush machine which can form more than one fibre tuft simultaneously. A further object of this invention is to provide an automatic brush machine which will simultaneously pick fibre tufts, assemble the tufts in a predetermined pattern and form an integral fibre tuft/brush support modular brush component. A still further object of this invention is t0 provide a brush machine of the type set forth in the foregoing object wherein the picking unit comprises an assembly of individual tuft pickers arranged in a predetermined tuft pattern allowing the complete fibre portion of the brush component to be formed simultaneously.

Another object of this invention is to provide a brush machine comprising means for heat sealing libre tufts integral with a brush support. A still further object of this invention is to provide a brush machine which assembles cut-to-length thermoplastic libre into libre tufts wherein no trimming of the tufts is required.'Yet still a further object of this invention is to provide a brush ma- :hine as set forth in the foregoing object wherein the original length of the` fibre employed is nearly the same as the finished libre tuft, and not double the length as is true with the staple-set U-loop tuft.

Another o bject of this invention is to provide a novel and new picking device.

Another object of this invention is to provide a Ibrush machine comprising at least two different size tuft picking devices, the picking devices so arranged in the picking mit, that at least two different size bre tufts can be simultaneously formed. Yet a further object of this in- Iention is to provide a brush machine of the type 'set orth in the foregoing object wherein at least two different length tufts are simultaneously formed. A still further obect of this invention is to provide a brush machine comarising at least two dilferent feed stock boxes, thus allowlng for forming brush components having more than one ype of fibre tuft, and/ or more than one color libre tuft.

Another object of this invention is to provide a novel rush construction comprising heat sealed synthetic fibre nftS. A further object of this invention is to provide i tufted brush construction comprising at least two differ- :nt size heat sealed tufts, said tufs being formed from :hermoplastic libre having an original length only slightly onger than the length of the finished fibre tuft. Yet still i. further object of this invention is to provide a tufted )rush construction comprising heat sealed ber tufts possessing different trims wherein the tufts are set in such t pattern as to be opposing one another.

Further objects of this invention are to provide novel :methods for the production of tufted brush construction, ind brush constructions employing some of the features )f the types set forth in the foregoing Objects.

In the drawing:

FIGURE 1 is a longitudinal sectional view of a tuft forming picker of FIGURE 6 containing parallel synthetsectional view taken along line 1A-1A of FIGURE 1.

FIGURE 2 is a longitudinal sectional View of another luft forming picker of this invention having an internal venturi section. FIGURES 2A and 2B are cross-sectional views taken along lines 2A-2A and 2B-2B, respectively, of FIGURE 2.

FIGURE 3 is a longitudinal sectional view of a tuft forming picker of this invention having a square crossiectional construction. FIGURE 3A is a cross-sectional View taken along line 3A--3A of FIGURE 3. Y

FIGURE4 is a longitudinal sectional view of a tuf forming picker of this invention having a star-like crossiectional construction. FIGURE 4A is a cross-sectional /iew taken along line 4A-4A of FIGURE 4.

FIGURE 5 is a longitudinal sectional view of a tuft forming picker of this invention having a triangular cross- ;ectional construction. FIGURE 5A is a cross-sectional Iiew taken along line SA-SA of FIGURE 5.

FIGURE 6 is a longitudinal sectional view of a tuft Forming picker having an internal tapered section in ac- :ordance with this invention. FIGURES 6A, 6B and 6C ire cross-sectional views taken along lines 6A-6A, 6B 5B and 6C-6C, respectively, of FIGURE 6.

FIGURE 7 is a longitudinal sectional view of thetuft :'orming picker of FIGURE 6 containing parallel synthec libre in accordance with this invention. .FIGURE 7A s a cross-sectional view taken along line 7A-7A of FIGURE 7.

,FIGURE 8 is a longitudinal sectional view of a tuft :'orming picker in accordance with this invention which s employed to form a shaped end on a libre tuft.

FIGURE 9 is a perspective View illustrating how the tuft forming picker of FIGURE 8 may be employed to form a predetermined quantity of individual parallel synthetic fibres into a tuft.

FIGURE 10 is a perspective view of a tuft as formed in accordance with this invention with one end heat sealed which forms the tuft base and the other end possessing a rounded trim.

FIGURES 11, 12 and 13 are longitudinal sectional views of tuft forming pickers "illustrating other shapes which may be imparted to tufts in accordance with this invention.

FIGURE 14 is alongitudinal sectional view of a group of tuft forming pickers in accordance with this invention illustrating libre ends prior to tuft-end formation. v

FIGURE 15 is a longitudinal sectional view of` one of the tuft forming pickers of FIGURE 14 containing a heat sealed libre tuft as formed in accordance with this invention.

FIGURE 16 is a sectional view in cross-section of a brush back with tufts as formed in accordance with this invention.

FIGURE 17 is a detailed fragmentary view in perspective and partly in section showing one arrangement of the tuft forming pickers, a synthetic bre storagehopper, a heat sealing die and a brush back/fibre tuft assembly station in accordance with this yinvention wherein the tuft forming pickers are opposite the fibre istorage hopper. FIGURES 18 and 19 lare further extensions of FIG- URE 17 wherein the tuft forming pickers are opposite the heat sealing die and the brush back/ bre tuft assembly station respectively. i

FIGURE 2O is a side cross-sectional yview taken along line AA-AA in FIGURE 17 of one arrangement of the tuft forming pickers employed to form a brush in accordance with this invention.

FIGURE 21 is a side cross-sectional view taken along line BB-BB of lFIGURE 17 of the synthetic fibre storage hopper. Y

FIGURE 22 is a side cross-sectional view taken `along line CC-CC in FIGURE 17 of the heat sealing die. u

FIGURE 23 is a side cross-sectional View taken along line DD--DD in FIGURE17 of a brush back and brush back mounting support.

FIGURE 23A is a side cross-sectional view taken along line EE-EEin FIGURE 19 illustrating a brush with tufts made according to this invention. 'l

FIGURE 24 is a perspective View illustrating how the tuftpforming pickers of FIGURE l may be employed to form a continuous tufted strip-brush construction.

FIGURE 25 is a perspective view of a strip-brush made according to the manner illustrated in FIGURE 24v.

In order to describe the invention more fully, Vreference is now made to specific embodiments illustratedbin the drawings. The invention is directed to brush making wherein tufted brushes are formed employingtuft forming pickers in such a manner that'each tuft contained 'in the brush back is simultaneously picked, simultaneously prepared for insertion as a heat sealed tuft into a brush back thus forming a complete brush in the same instant of time it requires an ordinary lbrush machine to pick and staple-set one libre tuft. This new and novel way to pick iibre tufts is achieved by employing ay longitudinal tube having a definite shape, i.e., circular cross-section, and limiting its inside length to that of somewhat less than the length of the libre used forforming a 'fibre tuft. Such'tuft forming pickers are shown in FIGURESY 1 through 5. ,i y

The tuft forming picker 1 of FIGURE 2 has a venturi section 4 approximately midway along the internal wall as indicated by line 2B--2B. As seen in FIGURE 2B, the venturi section is constructed such that it is constricted thus forming a smaller opening 2 at line 2A-2A. When libre enters the opening at 2, it is allowed to flow along the tube-like picker and as the fibre approaches the venturi at 4, the libre is further compressed in order to tighten the unsealed fibre tuft which resutls in holding the fibre together more rmly in order that they may not fall away. The tapered pin section at 3 provides the means for holding the tuft forming picker in any suitable mounting device.

By employing tuft forming pickers of the type shown in FIGURES 1, 3, 4 and 5 it is possible to form tufts having different shapes. It should be appreciated that other shaped cross-sections can be employed without deviating from the scope of this invention.

A more suitable type of tuft forming picker of this invention is shown in FIG-URE 6 wherein the exterior surface of the picker has a section at 7 having a slightly larger diameter which serves to minimize friction between the fibre and the external wall during removal of the tuft forming picker from the stock feed box. A tapered section is placed at 9 allowing fibres to first enter the picker at 8, travel through the internal section up to 9 and stop at the trim forming end, 5. The shape or contour of will determine the trim of the finished bre tuft. The smaller diameter at 9 acts in much the same way the venturi does in FIGURE 2. The tapered pin section 6 provides means for support of the picking device.

FIGURE 7 shows the tuft forming picker of FIGURE 6 containing synthetic fibre 10 in parallel arrangement. The end of the fibre 10 is slightly compressed together due to the internal taper at `9. Fibre end 10 projects somewhat beyond the end of the tuft forming picker; this end 10" will eventually form the heat sealed portion of the fibre tuft. By controlling the length of both the fibre and the tuft forming picker, it is possible to form tufts having different trim lengths and heat sealed portions.

FIGURES 8, 9 and 10 illustrate how a heat sealed tuft 11 can be formed possessing a rounded trim without having to physically trim the tuft. Fibre 11 in parallel arrangement is inserted into the tuft forming picker and the ends 12 conform to the interior end 12 of the picker. This results in the opposite end 12 conforming to the shape of a concave contour. The sealed fibre tuft will have a fibre length the same as the length for that of the interior of the picker. The excess fibre ends 12 as shown in FIGURE 9 extend outwardly from the tuft forming picker for such a length which makes them desirable for heat sealing. FIGURE 10 shows the finished libre tuft after having been heat sealed at 12" in FIGURE 9 possessing a rounded trim 12 and a heat sealed tuft end 13.

FIGURES 11, 12 and 13 illustrate different interior configurations which can be employed for forming different trims in fibre tufts. The fibre- 14 in FIGURE l1 conforms to the interior shape at 14', likewise, libres 1S and 16 of FIGURES 12 and 13 respectively conform to the interior shapes at and 16.

In order to form a heat sealed tuft like t'he one shown in FIGURE 10 it is necessary to heat the end portion of a group of parallel fibres to a temperature of approximately to that of the melting point of the particular type of synthetic fibre employed. Most thermoplastic fibres have softening points which make them pliable and capable of fusing together under a slight pressure. In the case of oriented synthetic fibres, they usually begin to deorient at their softening temperature, thus causing a decrease in length and an increase in diameter. Consequently, as the heated oriented ends of the fibre soften, they must be shaped and made to fuse in order to create a self-supporting heat sealed tuft. It is usually convenient to cause the fibre ends to become softened while contained within a heated shaping mold. In FIGURE 14 the tuft forming picker 17 containing fibre 18 is moved in the direction D causing the libre ends 18 to enter the heated shaping lmold at 19, the section 19 being more or less a guide means, and filling the cavity 20 of section 20. The tuft forming picker is allowed to remain in this position long enough for the fibre ends 18 to become fused and shaped like the tuft end 18" of FIGURE 15. The cavity section 20 of FIGURE 14 can be fashioned from stainless steel, however, Teflon (the trade name for a polyliuoride polymer made by Du Pont) makes a much more suitable material. The heating means 21 can be set at such a temperature that the time lag of the bres entry of the end 18' into the cavity 20 will cause the fibres to fuse but not melt. It is desirable, after fusing the fibres together and imparting the desired shape to the fused portion, to immediately insert the still softened end 18 into a predetermined tuft hole 22 in a brush back 23 of FIG. URE 16 causing the end 18" to take the form of the tuft hole. After insertion into the tuft hole, the softened fused portion takes a new shape 18' and becomes solid upon cooling. When the tuft forming picker 17 is drawn away the heat sealed fibre tuft 24 is left exposed and is securely anchored in the brush back Without the aid of the conventional Wire anchor or staple.

While the invention is susceptible of embodiment in many different forms, there is shown now in FIGURES 17, 18 and 19 specific embodiments with the understanding that the present disclosure is to be considered as an exemplification of the principle of the invention and is not intended in any way to limit the invention to the embodiments illustrated.

Particular attention is now given to the automatic brush machine shown in FIGURES 17, 18 and 19. Tln's automatic unit consists of three basic forming stations; a synthetic fibre stock box 25, a heating unit for forming the heat sealed libre tuft ends 26 and a mounting fixture for the brush back 27. The tuft forming picking device 31 in FIGURE 17 is comprised of individual tuft forming pickers 29 and 29 having configurations like the tuft forming pick of FIGURE l. Outer tuft forming pickers 29 are larger in diameter than the inner tuft forming pickers 29 as shown in FIGURE 20. By having larger diameter tuft forming pickers, a brush may result having larger tufts positioned around its outer parameter. The tuft forming pickers 29 and 29 in the forming device 31 are arranged in such a manner so as to conform to the tuft arrangement desired in the finished brush. Picking is carried out by allowing the picking unit 31 to enter longitudinally to the bres length into the stock box 25 as shown in FIGURES 17 and 2l, through fibre retaining holes 28 and 28. The pickers first come into contact with the ends of the fibre 30 and by employing a quick entry in the direction of E the fibres are forced into the interior cavity of each tuft forming picker. Upon reversing the motion of the picking unit 31 the individual tuft forming pickers retract, each filled with a predetermined amount of synthetic libre. As the picking unit leaves the fibre stock box more fibre 30 falls so as to occupy the empty spaces created by the removal of fibres 30. Suitable means may be employed for vibrating the fibre stock box in order to facilate fibre alignment and mobility. After completing the picking operation, the machine support 32 is indexed forward in the direction F in order to allow the heating unit 26 to align itself opposite the tuft forming picking unit, as shown in FIG- URES 1'8 and 22. The picking unit is moved forward 1n the direction G until the fibre contained in each tuft forming picker comes into contact with the cavities 34 and 34 of the shaping mold 33. This shaping mold is preferably constructed from Teflon thermoplastic polymer. The mold is attached to a steel mounting plate 36 containing suitable electric heating elements 35. The fibre ends become heated and shaped in the same fashion as previously described and shown in FIGURE 14. Preferably, the fibre 30 is inserted into the cavities and allowed to become heated for 5-10 seconds while the actual temperature of the cavities is kept higher than the melting point of the fibres; i.e. isotactic polypropylene fibres melt in the range from to 145 degrees centigrade (100,000 to 200,000 molecular weight polymer). The cavities in this case might be kept at temperatures in the order of from to 160 degrees centigrade. After the :nds of the libre tufts have been heat sealed, the picking lnit 31 is reversed allowing the tuft heat sealed por- ;ion to come away from the cavities. This removal can be acilitated by rst applying a mold release to the inner iurfaces of the mold cavities. However, if Teflon is em- )loyed for the cavity structure, a mold releasing agent s not necessary. The machine support 32 is indexed foraard in the direction H in order to align the brush supaort 36 opposite the heat sealed (still moldable) fibre .ufts. In FIGURES 19 and 23 the picking unit is then idvanced forward in the direction of I whereupon the ltill moldable fibre tuft ends are inserted into the caviies 39 and 39 of the brush back 38. As the tuft ends :ome into contact with the cavities, the moldable end :onforms to the cavity contour and cools. The brush Jack is held against the brush support by means of fix- :ures 37. Upon reversing the picking unit 31 in the direc- :ion J the tuft forming pickers release the fibre and the )verall result is a finished brush as shown in FIGURE 23A. The brush back 38 has heat sealed fibre tufts 30"'. Phe preferred time taken for the complete fabrication lof :he brush is approximately ten seconds. However, there s no definite time cycle. Each cycle depends upon the ;ype of synthetic fibre employed and the size of the fibre uft desired. There is no trimming required after forming he brush of this invention since there is no disalignment )f fibres when forming the fibre tufts. This is true because here is no doubling of fibres prior to insertion.

By employing tuft picking units as shown in FIGURE Z4 it is possible to form continuous modular strips of hermoplastic tufted brush constructions. In order to ichieve this, it requires an assembly of tuft forming pick- :rs 39 arranged side by side in a line. After the fibre 44 .s inserted in the tuft picking unit, the unit is then moved :oward the forming mold 40 in the direction K thus alowing the fibre ends 44 to lbecome softened and fused Nithin the cavity 41. The mold 40 is attached to a steel rousing 43 which contains suitable heating elements 42. Upon cooling of the fused fibre ends 44' the molded :onstruction 45 is indexed forward in the direction L illowing the picking unit to repeat its cycle. When this Jperation is carried out properly, the modular brush con- ;truction 45 as shown in FIGURE 25 results.

The tuft forming pickers of this invention can be con- ;tructed from any of the conventional metal elements or illoys known to man. Also, it is possible to construct the vnicking devices from thermoplastic materials; i.e., poly- Jropylene, polyacetal, polyamide, and the like. The tuft :`orming pickers are not limited to any given size since hey Ican have any length and internal diameter so long is they conform to a given fibre tuft.

It has been found that the tuft forming pickers of this nvention will pick tufts from assembled parallel cut-to- ,ength synthetic fibres having any cross-sectional shape; .e.,` circular, X-shaped, star shaped, hollow, and the like. Phe diameter of the fibres picked range from 0.008 inch o 0.250 inch. The lengths of the cut-to-length fibre can ange from 0.5 to 30 inches. The compositions o-f the synthetic fibre picked and assembled into fibre tufts is lot limited, and thermoplastic fibres either oriented or moriented can be used to form tufts in accordance with ',he invention. Polymers like polyamide, polypropylene, nolyethylene, co-polymers of polypropylene and ethylene, polyfiuoride, and the like can be employed.

If more than one fibre stock box is employed, it is possible to pick one color and diameter fibre during one gicking step, and another color and diameter during a iecond picking step and then instantaneously heat seal 1nd assemble the combination of fibre tufts into a brush sack. 'f

The foregoing considerations conclusively demonstrate he advantages to be gained by providing picking devices )f the type hereinbefore, descrided. When such picking ievices are incorporated into` automatic brush making equipment there is attained new and novel brush con# structionsheretofore not known. -1 C The invention in its broader aspects is not limited to the specific steps, methods, compositions, combinations and improvements described but departures may be made therefrom in the scope of the accompanying claims without departing from the principles of the invention' and without sacrificing its chief advantages.

I claim:

1. Brush-making apparatus for assembling a plurality of synthetic filaments comprising a filament storage box having an openingfor filling, and a plurality of apertures in the front face disposed in a brush tuft' configuration; and a picking device 'comprising a plurality of hollow cylindrical tuft forming pickers corresponding in size, shape, and number to said apertures ini said boxface and extending from the picking device in parallel relation corresponding to. said brushtuft configuration of said box apertures; each said hollow cylindrical pickerv having a closed end forming meansV for securing filament pickers' to said device, an internal constriction, and an open end having a tapered edge, and being ofay length less than the length of a filament; whereby when said tuft forming pickers are inserted and removed from said apertures in said storage box filled with brush filaments, saidl pickers will Vsimultanebusly pick and vtrim tufts of filaments for assembly into a brush. Y'

2.V A brush making apparatus for assembling synthetic #laments for mounting in a brushback comprising:

' a stock box for supporting a plurality 'of synthetic cutfl to-length filaments in a parallel relationship, said box having a wall with at least one aperture itherein, the wall extending transverse to the longitudinal axis of the filaments at an yena thereof when said filaments are supported in said box, the aperture being larger than the cross'sectional area of at least one of the said vlaments; v

at least one hollow picking element having an open,

filament-receiving end and a closed end, said elementv adapted to be inserted into said box through the aperture to pick at least one filament tuft from said box so that when said box supports said filaments and said element is vinserted therein, said element will receive at least one filament and thereby forml a filament tuft; p l Y means carried by said picking element for-retaining the picked tuft'therein; p." whereby when the open end of said pickingelement is inserted intoI said box through said aperture to receive at least one filament therein, and said element and retained tuft are subsequently withdrawn from said box a tuft will be picked from said box for Y mounting in a brushback. l .v 3. The device of claim 2 wherein said picking element is adapted to simultaneously pick a plurality of filaments from said box when said element is inserted through said aperture to forma tuff comprising a plurality of filaments. v

4. The device of claim 2 wherein the wall of said box has a plurality of apertures mutually-spaced in-,pre-v selected positions and a plurality of said picking. elements are provided for simultaneousv insertion into said box through the apertures to pick a plurality of tufts from said boxjor mounting in a brushback. 5. Brush making apparatus for assembling synthetic filaments for mounting in a brushback comprising:v

a stock box for supporting a plurality o1 cut-to-length synthetic filaments in a parallel relationship, said box having at least one aperture in a wall thererojc so that when said box supports said filaments` said wall is perpendicular vto thelongitudinal axis of the fila- .i ments and said aperture exposes the ends of a plu-V y, rality of said filaments; at least one elongatedkhollow picking element having an open filament-receiving end anda closed tufttrimming end, said element adapted to be inserted into said box through said aperture to receive the end and central portion of a plurality of filaments when said filaments are supported in said box, the end portion of said filaments abutting the internal face of the closed end of said element, to form a tuft of said filaments;

retaining means carried by said picking element for retaining the end and central portion of said tuft in said element when said element is withdrawn through said aperture.

6. The device of claim 2 wherein the retaining means carried by said picking element is mounted within said element and comprises means for compressing said tuft.

7. The device of claim 5 wherein the retaining means carried by said picking element is mounted within said element and comprises means for compressing said tuft.

8. The device of claim 6 wherein the retaining means is an internal constriction disposed adjacent the internal wall of said closed end.

9. The device of claim 6 wherein the retaining means is an internal constriction spaced from the internal wall of said closed end.

10. The device of claim 7 wherein the retaining means is an internal constriction disposed adjacent the internal wall of said closed end.

11. The device of claim 7 wherein the retaining means is an internal constriction spaced from the internal wall of said closedend.

12. The device of claim 5 wherein the internal wall of said hollow picking element has a lateral cross section in a pre-selected configuration so that when said element receives said filaments, said element will form a tuft of filaments having a corresponding lateral cross-sectional configuration.

J3. The device of claim 12 wherein the pre-selected configuration is a square.

14. The device of claim 12 wherein the pre-selected configuration is a star.

15. The device of claim 12 wherein the preselected configuration is a triangle.

16. 'The device of claim 12 wherein the pre-selected configuration is circular.

17. The device of claim 5 wherein the internal wall of the closed end of said hollow picking element has a preselected configuration to trim the end of said tuft formed thereby.

18. The device of claim 17 wherein the pre-selected configuration is convex.

19. The device of claim 17 wherein the pre-selected configuration is concave.

20. The device of claim 17 wherein the pre-selected configuration comprises a plurality of stepped surfaces.

21. The device of claim 5 wherein the internal face of the closed end of said hollow picking element lies in a plane disposed at an angle to the longitudinal axis of said picking element. Y

22.' The device of claim 5 wherein the external surface of said picking element immediately adjacent the open, filament-receiving end is tapered toward said open end, and the opening described by the terminal portion of the surface is perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of said element.

23. The device of claim 5 wherein the filament-receiving opening of said picking element is disposed at an angle to the longitudinal axis of said element.

24. The device of claim 23 wherein the external surface surrounding the opening lies in a plane disposed at an acute angle to the longitudinal axis of said picking element.

25. The device of claim 23 wherein the external surface surrounding the opening lies in a plane disposed perpendicularly to the longitudinal axis of said picking element.

26. Apparatus for assembling synthetic filament tufts 10 having a fused end portion for mounting on a brushback comprising:

a stock box for supporting a plurality of cut-to-length synthetic )laments in a parallel, stacked relationship, said box having at least one aperture therein for exposing the ends of a plurality of said filaments;

at least one hollow picking element having an open, filament-receiving end and a closed, tuft-trimming end, the open end of said element adapted to be inserted into said box through the aperture and to receive an end and central portion of a plurality of filaments therein, forming a tuft;

retaining means carried by said picking element for retaining said tuft of filaments therein when said element is withdrawn from said stock box through the aperture;

heated mold means having at least one tuff-receiving recess therein for receiving an end portion of said tuft retained in said picking element and for fusing said end to form a tuft of filaments extending from an integral fused base adapted to be mounted on a brushback;

so that when said picking element is inserted into said stock box through said aperture to pick a tuft of filaments, and withdrawn therefrom with the tuft retained therein, the end portion of said tuft extending from said picking element may be inserted into the recess of said heated mold means until said end is fused for mounting said fused end on a brushback.

27. The device of claim 26 wherein said stock box has a plurality of apertures; said heated mold means has a plurality of recesses, the apertures and recesses being arranged in a pre-selected configuration and; a plurality of picking elements are provided; said picking elements adapted to be simultaneously inserted into said box through said apertures, to pick a plurality of tufts from said stock box, and subsequently, to simultaneously insert the end portions of said tufts extending therefrom into said recesses to fuse the end portions for mounting on a brushback.

28. The device of claim 26 further comprising means for supporting a brushback having a plurality of tuftreceiving holes therein disposed adjacent said mold means in a cooperating relationship therewith so that the fused end portion of said tuft may be withdrawn from the recess in said heated mold means and inserted into a hole in said brushback before said fused end cools so that said tulft end cools in said hole conforming to the internal confines thereof to retain said tuft in Said brushback.

29. The device of claim 27 further comprising means for supporting a brushback having a plurality of tuftreceiving holes therein disposed adjacent said mold means in a cooperating relationship therewith so that the fused end portions of said tufts may be withdrawn from the recesses in said heated mold means and inserted into holes in said brushback before said fused ends cool so that said tuft ends cool in said holes conforming to the ntenal confines thereof to retain said tufts in said brush- 30. Apparatus for assembling a plurality of filament tufts to form a brushback having said tufts extending from an integral back of fused filamentary material comprising:

a stock box for supporting a plurality of cut-to-length synthetic filaments in a parallel, stacked relationship, said box having a plurality of apertures therein for exposing the ends of a plurality of filaments;

a plurality of hollow picking elemen'ts each of said elements having an open filament-receiving end and a closed ruft-trimming end, the open end of each element adapted to be inserted into said box through the aperture and to receive an end central portion of a plurality of filaments therein forming a tuft;

retaining means carried by each of said picking elements for retaining said tufts of filaments therein when said element is withdrawn from said 'box through th aperture; v

l heated mold means having a tuft-receiving recess, said recess having the internal configuration of a brulshback mold for receiving the exposed ends of a plurality of said tufts retained in said picking elements and for fusing said end to form a brushback of fused filamentary material having integral tufts of filaments extending therefrom, so that when said picking elements are simultaneously inserted into the-apertures in said stock box to pick a plurality of tufts, and withdrawn from said box through said apertures, with tufts retained therein the end portions of said tufts extending from said picking elements may be simultaneously inserted into said recess until said end portions fuse and form a brushback of fused filamentary material hav-ing integral tufts extending therefrom.

31. Apparatus for assemlbling synthetic filament tufts having a fused end portion for mounting on a brushback :omprising:

a stock box at a first station for supporting a plurality of cut-to-length synthetic filaments in a parallel, stacked relationship, said box having at least one aperture therein for exposing the ends 'of a plurality of said filaments;

least one hollow picking element having an open, filament-receiving end and a closed, tuft-trimming end, the open end of said element adapted to be inserted into said box through the aperture and to receive an end and central portion of a plurality of filaments therein, forming a tuft;

retaining means carried by said picking element for retaining said tuft of filaments therein whensaid element is withdrawn from said stock box through the aperture;

heated mold means at a second station having at least one tuft-receiving recess therein for receiving an end portion of said tuft retained in said picking element and for fusing said end to forma tuft of filaments extending from an integral fused base adapted to be mounted on a brushback;

said picking element adapted to be moved to the first station and 'subsequently to be moved to the second station so that said element may be moved tothe first station, inserted into said stockbox through said aperture to pick a tuft of filaments, withdrawn from said box through said aperture with said tuft retained therein; moved to said second station, and the end portion'of said tuft extending from said picking element inserted into the recess of said heated mold means'to fuse said end portion for mounting on a brushback.

32. The device of claim 31 wherein said stock box has a plurality of apertures; said heated mold means has a plurality of recesses, the apertures and recesses being arranged in a pre-selected configuration; and a plurality of picking elements are provided; said elements adapted to be simultaneously inserted -into said box through 'said apertures to pick a plurality of tufts from said stock box; and subsequently to simultaneously insert the end portions of said tufts extending from said picking elements into said recesses to fuse the end portions for mounting on a brushback.

33. The device of claim 31 further comprising means for supporting a brushback having a plurality of tuft-receiving holes therein at a third station so that the fused end portion of said tuft may be withdrawn from the recess in said heated moldmeans and inserted into a hole in said brushback before said fused end cools so that said 70 30 tuft end cools in said hole conforming tothe internal confines thereof to retain said tuft in said brushback.

34. The device of claim 32 further comprising means for supporting a brushback havingra plurality of tuft-receiving holes therein at a third station so that the .fused end portions of said tufts may be withdrawn fromI the recesises in said heated mold means and inserted into holes in said brushback before said fused ends cool so that said tuft ends cool in said holes conforming to the `internal confines thereof to retain said-tufts in said brushback.

35. Apparatus for aissembling a plurality of filament tufts to form a brushback having said tufts extending from an integral back of Ifused flamentary material comprising:

a stock box at a first station for supporting a plurality of cut-to-le-ngth synthetic filaments .in a parallel, stacked relationship, said. box having a plurality of apertures therein for exposing the ends of 'a plurality of filaments; 1- t. a plurality of hollow picking elements each of said elements having an open filament-receiving end and a closed tuft-trimming end, the open end of eachelement adapted to be inserted into said box through the aperture and to receive an end and central portion of a plurality of filaments therein forming a tuft; .k retaining means carried by each of said picking elements for retaining said tufts of filaments therein when said element is 'withdrawn from said box through the aperture; d heated mold means at a second station having atuftf receiving rece'ss, said recess having the internal con-` figuration of a brushback mold for receiving the exposed ends of a plurality of said tufts retained in said picking elements and for fusing said ends to form a brushback of fused filamentary material having integral tufts 'of filaments extending therefrom; said picking elements adaptedto be 'simultaneously inserted into the apertures in said stock box to pick a plurality of tufts, and withdrawn with said retained tufts from said box through said apertures;

i said elements also adapted to insert the end portions of said tufts extending therefrom simultaneously into said recess until said end portions fuse and forml a brushback of fused jilamentary material having integral tufts extending therefrom.

References Cited g The following references, cited yby the Examiner, are

GRANVILLE Y. CUSTERJR., Primary Examiner oL-s, 7, 21,

-U.s. c1. X.R.

Referenced by
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US5072482 *Aug 31, 1989Dec 17, 1991Professional Dental Technologies, Inc.End Brush with male projection, apparatus and method for making same, and apparatus for use thereof
US5165759 *Apr 6, 1992Nov 24, 1992Tucel Industries, Inc.For picking synthetic filament used in brush construction
US5165761 *Dec 30, 1991Nov 24, 1992The Procter & Gamble CompanyMethod of making improved toothbrush having multi-level tufts with substantially uniformly rounded bristle ends in each tuft
US5224763 *Dec 30, 1991Jul 6, 1993The Procter & Gamble CompanyMethod of fastening bristle tufts to bristle carrier
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Classifications
U.S. Classification300/2, 300/21, 300/5, 300/7
Cooperative ClassificationA46D3/05