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  1. Erweiterte Patentsuche
VeröffentlichungsnummerUS3727547 A
PublikationstypErteilung
Veröffentlichungsdatum17. Apr. 1973
Eingetragen17. Juni 1971
Prioritätsdatum17. Juni 1971
Auch veröffentlicht unterCA947138A, CA947138A1, DE2227295A1, DE2227295B2
VeröffentlichungsnummerUS 3727547 A, US 3727547A, US-A-3727547, US3727547 A, US3727547A
ErfinderWilde S
Ursprünglich BevollmächtigterHc Ind
Zitat exportierenBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
Externe Links: USPTO, USPTO-Zuordnung, Espacenet
Self-adjusting coding apparatus
US 3727547 A
Zusammenfassung
Marking apparatus for applying indicia to capped bottles or other containers of varying heights. The device consists of a rim having a print ring on the outer perpheral surface held in frictional engagement with a drive wheel that also performs a function of supplying ink to the print ring and is maintained in frictional engagement through a smaller diameter wheel engaging the inner surface of the rim. A substantial point contact between the inner surface of the rim and the outer surface of the support wheel allows the rim to move vertically to compensate for bottles of varying heights passing under the rim. While not necessary to the practice of the invention, an idler roller may engage the inner surface of the rim at the location spaced from the contact with the second wheel to provide additional support for the rim during its normal rotational movement.
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Beschreibung  (OCR-Text kann Fehler enthalten)

Unite States Patent 1191 Wilde Apr. 17, 1973 I SELF-ADJUSTING CODING FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS APPARATUS 1,577,451 6/1969 France ..lOl/l52 [75] Inventor: Sheldon L. Wilde, Crawfordsville,

Ind. Primary Examiner-Robert E. Pulfrey Assistant Examiner-Clifford D. Crowder [73] Asslgnee: H-C Industries, Inc0rp0rated,CraW- fordsviue Ind Attorney-Max Dressler et al.

22 Filed: June 17, 1971 [57] ABSTRACT Marking apparatus for applying indicia to capped bottles or other containers of varying heights. The device consists of a rim having a print ring on the outer U-S. perphera] surface in frictional engagement a [5 [I'll- 4 drive wheel that also performs a function of Fleld of Search to the print ring and is maintained in frictional en- 1 18/262 gagement through a smaller diameter wheel engaging the inner surface of the rim. A substantial point con- [56] References Clted tact between the inner surface of the rim and the UNITED STATES PATENTS outer surface of the support wheel allows the rim to move vertically to compensate for bottles of varying 2,211,794 8/1940 Rohland ..lOI/376 heights passing under the rim. While not necessary to 3,425,347 2/1969 Nard /3 6 the practice of the invention, an idler roller may en- 2341980 7/ 1958 vlsqardl gage the inner surface of the rim at the location g f g' ct spaced from the contactwith the second wheel to proo sm1 1 1 .1 1,876,278 9/1932 Diescher ..ll8/l0l x f li for the durmg normal 2,715,024 3/1955 Nydegger et a1. m a moveme 2,1 l4,379 /1938 2,14378 4/1938 10 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures 2,145,320 H1939 42 ""ffl'i'lflfjitf V V .M-- P 50 82 Q" g I l 1 1 1 4 4 Patented April 17, 1973 INVENTOR SHELDON L. W/L DE YQML,

ATTORNEYS NdE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates generally to coding apparatus and more particularly to an improved mechanism for compensating for variations in height of containers being marked.

One of the major problems in coding any kind of hottles or other containers is the variations in height of the bottles. This is particularly accute in foreign countries where it has been found that this variation in height between purportedly the same size bottles can be in excess of one-fourth of an inch. The ability to compensate for these variations in height without affecting the character of the indicia being applied to the bottle caps has been one of the major problemS in coding apparatus.

Coding apparatus of this general type normally includes a first wheel that is drivenby a suitable source, such as an electric motor, and a printing wheel that is frictionally driven by first wheel with suitable mechanism for supplying ink to the printed wheel.

One manner of adjusting for bottle height variations is to support the print wheel for pivotal movement about the center of the drive wheel. This allows the print wheel to move up and down about the periphery of the drive wheel as the bottles to be coded are passing along a path below the two wheels. However, because of the fairly large mass of the print wheel as well as its supporting structure, relatively high inertia forces are developed as the print wheel moves up and down resulting in uneven pressure between the containers and the wheel. This causes a smearing of the indicia as it is being applied to the upper surface of the container and detracts from the quality of the print. In order to partially overcome this problem, some sort of spring dampening means is usually incorporated into the pivoted printing wheel which further increases the mass resulting in further uneveness of the pressure of the print wheel onto the surface of the container.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The coding apparatus of the present invention incorporates a self-adjusting feature which automatically compensates for variations in height of containers that are being marked on the upper surface thereof while still applying a substantially constant pressure between the printing ring and the top surface of the containers.

According to the present invention, the transfer means for receiving ink from a supply and delivering the ink in the form of indicia to the top of containers consists ofa circular rim having an inner and outer surface with indicia means on the outer surface and frictionally engaging a driven wheel and contact means engaging the inner surface to maintain the indieia means in engagement with the periphery of the driven wheel. The rim and contact meanscooperates to allow vertical movement of the bottom edge of the rim and accom modate containers of varying heights.

In the illustrated embodiment, the marking apparatus includes a wheel that is driven by a suitable source, such as a motor, and has its peripheral surface in engagement with a freely rotatable inking roll that cooperates with an ink well to deliver ink to the periphery of the driven roll. The ink is then transferred from the driven wheel onto the periphery of the transfer rim and ultimately onto the top surface of caps closing containers.

The contact means is in the form of a wheel that is freely rotatable on a support plate and the wheel is adjustable relative to a fixed support to vary the spacing between the peripheral surface of "the two wheels to approximately the thickness of the rim. In addition, to provide further support for the printing rim, an idler roller is also supported for rotation about a fixed axis on the support plate at a location spaced from the axis for the contact wheel. The diameters of the contact wheel and the idler roller are considerably less than the diameter of the inner surface of the rim and are posi tioned so as to engage the inner surface of the rim at circumferentially spaced locations, both of which are located above the center of the rim. With this arrangement, substantial line contact is developed between the inner surface of the rim and the outer surface of theof the two wheels.

To further accommodate bottles of varying heights, the print ring is preferably of the compressible type and, for this purpose, is molded with holes therein so that the compressibility of the ring will accommodate some variation in height of bottles.

In some instances, it may also be desirable to positively drive the contact wheel when heavy resin-type inks are used. According to a further aspect of the invention, this is accomplished by providing a radially extending flange from the contact wheel and having its peripheral surface in frictional engagement with the driven wheel so that the contact wheel rotates in response to the rotation ofthe driven wheel.

The present arrangement allows for automatic adjustment of the printing rim to accommodate bottles of varying heights proceeding along a path. The relatively small mass of the print rim can readily be moved vertically and will do so without significantly varying the pressure against the article being printed.

According to a further aspect of the invention, the contact wheel and idler roller are adjustably supported on the support member to vary the amount of pressure between the print rim and the driven wheel.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF SEVERAL VIEWS OF DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is an end view, partly in section, ofa container conveyor having the self-adjusting coding apparatus supported adjacent thereto;

FIG. 2 is a side elevation of the coding apparatus shown in FIG. I with the cover removed; and

FIG 3 is a view similar to FIG. 2 showing the printing mechanism in the self-adjusted position.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION While this invention is susceptible of embodiment in many different forms, there is shown in the drawings and will herein be described in detail one specific embodiment, with the understanding that the present disclosure is to be considered as an exemplification of the principles of the invention and is not intended to limit the invention to the embodiment illustrated.

FIG. 1 of the drawings discloses the coding apparatus constructed in accordance with the present invention and supported adjacent a path of an advancing procession of containers 12. The path for the containers is defined by a conveyor 14 that may be of any suitable type with supporting structure 16 adjacent the path to restrict the containers, which are illustrated as capped bottles. The basicstructure of the coding apparatus 10 is generally of the type disclosed and claimed in my co-pending application Ser. No. 776,114, filed Nov. 15, 1968, now US. Pat. No. 3,589,280. While not specifically limited to any specific type of coding apparatus, the present invention will be described in connection with the coding apparatus generally disclosed in the co-pending application.

The coding or marking apparatus for printing indicia on the top surface of the advancing procession of containers moving along a path consists ofa support having a first piece 20 fixedly secured adjacent the path for the bottles 12 and a second piece 2l'that is vertically adjustable relative to the first piece through an adjust ment screw 22 and a crank member 23.

The support means further includes a horizontal plate 24 that is fixedly secured, to the upper end of the second piece 21 and an additional vertical plate 26 that extends above the horizontal plate 24. The vertical plate 26 or support member is located above the path for the bottles 12 and has a drive wheel 30 supported for rotation on a fixed axis. The drive wheel is rotated by drive means 32 that is illustrated an electric motor having its output shaft connected through a coupling 34 to a shaft 36 that forms part of the wheel 30.

The marking apparatus .10 further includes ink supply means 40 for maintaining a supply of ink on the periphery of the drive wheel 30. In the illustrated embodiment, the ink supply means consists of an inking wheel or roller 42 supported by a stub shaft 44 on the plate 26 with the periphery of the wheel 42 being in frictional engagement with the periphery of the drive .wheel 30. An ink well 46 is secured to the plate 26 and positioned such that the lower portion of the ink wheel 42 is located within the inking well. With this arrangement, rotation of the drive wheel 30 will cause simultaneous rotation of the inking wheel 42 to transfer ink from the well 46 to the periphery of the drive wheel.

The coding apparatus 10 further includes transfer means 50 for receiving ink from the drive wheel 30 and delivering the ink to the tops of the containers 12 as the containers or bottles are moved along the path. According to the invention, the transfer means 50 is automatically capable of compensating for variation in height of bottles advancing along the path while still producing a clear print on the top surface of the bottle caps.

in order to accomplish this in a simple and inexpensive manner, the transfer means includes a circular rim 52 having an inner surface 54 and an outer surface 56. The outer surface has indicia 57 (FIG. 1) thereon while contact means 58 engage the inner surface of the rim and maintain the indicia means in engagement with the periphery of the drive wheel 30, According to the primary aspect of the present invention, the contact means and rim cooperate to accommodate vertical movement of the bottom of the rim 52 and allow containers of varying heights to pass along the path and have each of the containers receive an imprint of the indicia means on the periphery of the rim.

Most specifically, the contact means 58 is in the form of a second wheel or roller 60 that is carried by a support plate 62 which in turn is supported on the vertical plate 26. The support plate or means 62 is positioned on the plate 26 in a manner to locate the periphery of the second wheel 60 in spaced relation to the periphery of the drive wheel 30 with the rim 52 being located between the two wheels and having its outer surface 56 indriving engagement with the periphery of the drive wheel and its inner surface 54 engaging the peripheral surface of the second wheel 60. An inspection of FIG. 2 and 3 shows that the diameter of the second wheel 60 is considerably less than the diameter of the inner surface 54 of the rim 52. This results in substantial line contact between the inner surface 54 of the rim 52 and the peripheral surface of the wheel 60 for a purpose which will be described later.

According to another aspect of the invention, the support means 62 can be adjusted relatively to the support 26 to vary the amount of pressure developed between the periphery of the rim 52 and the periphery of the drive wheel 30. This is accomplished by supporting the plate 62 on the plate 26 through a stub shaft 66 that extends through an elongated slot 68 in the plate 26. The stub shaft 66 is secured in any one of a plurality of adjusted positions by a nut 70 threaded on the end of the stub shaft. Thus, by loosening the nut 70, the shaft 66 can be shifted horizontally in the slot 68 to vary the spacing between the periphery of the wheels 30 and 60.

In its preferred embodiment, the transfer means further includes second contact means engaging the inner surface 54 of the rim at a location spaced from the contact point for the wheel or roller 60. The second contact means is in the form of an idler roller 76 that is supported for rotation about a fixed axis on the plate 62 and has a diameter substantially less than the diameter of the inner surface 54. This results in substantial line contact between the surface of the roller 76 and the inner surface of the rim at a location that is spaced from the contact between the wheel 60 and the inner surface of the rim.

With the described arrangement, the rim 52 is normally held in the position shown in FIG. 2 where rotation of the drive wheel 30 will frictionally drive the rim 52 and transfer ink from the periphery of the wheel 30 onto the top surface of the bottle cap 12a.

In positioning the coding apparatus for a coding application of a plurality of containers 12 moving along the path, the plate 24 is first positioned vertically so as to locate the outer surface of the rim 52 in vertical alignment with the shortest bottle that will be passing along the path defined by the conveyor 14. The procession of containers 12 is then initiated and the motor 32 is energized and the speed is adjusted to have the angular velocity of the outer surface of the rim 56 correspond to the linear velocity of the top surfaces of the caps 120. Thus, as the bottles pass below the rim 52, indicia is applied to the top surface of the caps 12a. However, assuming that one of the bottles is of a greater height than the vertical spacing between the lowest edge of the rim and the top of the conveyor, the transfer means will automatically adjust to this height when the higher bottles pass under the lower edge of the'rim. This arrangement is illustrated in FIG. 3 where it will be seen that the rim 52 is pivoted about a point P located in a plane that extends through the axes of the wheels 30 and 60 and the inner surface of the rim is moved away from the peripheral surface of the idler roll 76. More specifically, the pivot point for the rim 52 is located an equal dimension from the periphery of the respective wheels 30 and 60 and the wheels 30 and 60 engage the rim 50 at a location circumferentially spaced from the area of contact between the peripheral surface of the printing rim and the containers moving along the path.

Immediately after the higher bottle has moved past the rim 56, the rim will automatically return to its supported position shown in FIG. 2. Because of the relatively small mass of the very thin rim 52, the rim can easily return to an equilibrium position shown in FIG. 2 before the next succeeding bottle 12 is passed under the rim. This arrangement is important since it insures that the quality of the print on each of the caps 12a is of the same high quality character.

According to another aspect of the invention, the outer surface 56 of the rim is defined on a resilient compressible portion or ring 80 that is capable of being compressed a predetermined dimension. In the illustrated embodiment, the resilient ring or portion 80 is in the form of a compressible ring of rubber or other suitable material that has a plurality of small openings 82 defined therein. The openings 82 and the resiliency of the rubber allows a predetermined amount of compression that will perform two distinct functions. First, the compressibility of the ring or outer portion of the rim 52 will automatically compensate for small variation in bottle height. Thus, with only small variations in bottle heights, the rim 52 need not be moved from its position shown in FIG. 2. However, should the bottle height be of sufficient magnitude to be greater than the compressibility of the ring 80, the rim will then be moved vertically as is shown in FIG. 3. The compressible ring or portion 80 performs a second function of allowing for variations in the amount of pressure that is developed between the outer surface of the rim and the peripheral surface of the drive wheel 30. As is seen in FIG. 2, in the adjusted position shown, the second wheel 60 is spaced from the first wheel 30 by a dimension that is less than the radial dimension of the rim 52 including the ring portion 80 in its undeformed condition. This causes the ring 80 to be partially compressed in the area between the periphery of the wheels 30 and 60 and increases the pressure developed between the outer surface 56 of the rim and the outer surface of the wheel 30. Thus, it may be stated that the driving force between the periphery of the rim and the drive wheel may be varied by adjusting the position of the second wheel 60.

In some instances, it may also be desirable to provide a further driving force to the rim 52in, for example, instances where heavy resin type inks are used which are fairly good lubricants and will result in reduced frictional contact between the periphery of the rim 52 and the periphery of the wheel 30. This can simply and effectively be accomplished by providing a radial flange 90 extending from the periphery of the wheel 60 that frictionally engage the periphery of the drive wheel so as to positively drive the wheel 60 in response to rotation of the drive wheel 30. The flange means would extend along one edge of the rim 52 and would engage the periphery of the drive wheel 30 beyond the point of contact for the print rim 52. It would be appreciated that in this instance, it would be desirable to have the axial dimension of the ink transfer wheel 42 be substan' tially equal to the axial dimension of the rim 52 while the drive wheel 30 would have a greater axial dimension to produce an uninked portion that would be contacted by the flange 90.

Various well known ways could be utilized to increase the frictional engagement between the outer periphery of the radially extending flange and the periphery of the wheel 30. It would also be appreciated that two such flanges 90 could be utilized and could be located on opposite sides of the rim.

It will be appreciated that the: amount of vertical movement of the lower edge of the outer surface of rim 52 will be dependent upon the amount of compression of the rim 52 and the wheel 30 as well as the diameter of the second or driven wheel 641). Also, the contact between the support means for the rim 52 and the con tact means occurs above the center of the rim thus allowing for the rim to be moved vertically about the pivot point with a minimum amount of force, approximately the amount required to move the weight of the rim.

The mechanism of the present invention provides a simple and automatic expedient of compensating for varying heights of bottles while utilizing a minimum amount of material, all of which is readily available in its original form.

What is claimed is:

l. Marking apparatus for printing indicia on the top surface of an advancing procession of containers moving along a path comprising: a support member located above said path; a drive wheel supported on a fixed axis on said support member; drive means for rotating said wheel; a second wheel; support means on said support member for locating the periphery of said second wheel in spaced relation to the periphery of said drive wheel; a printing rim having an outer surface in driving engagement with the peripheral surface of said drive wheel and an inner surface engaging the peripheral surface of said second wheel, said inner surface having a diameter greater than the diameter of said second wheel and said wheels being circumferentially spaced from the area of contact between the peripheral surface of the printing rim and the containers moving along the path to allow vertical movement of said rim and accommodate containers of varying height advancing along said path.

2. Marking apparatus as defined in claim 1, further including a roller carrried by said support means, said roller having a peripheral surface normally engaging the inner surface of said rim, said roller having a diameter substantially less than the diameter of said inner surface.

3. Marking apparatus as defined in claim 1, further including adjustment means between said support member and said support means for varying the spacing between said wheels.

4. Marking apparatus as defined in claim 1, further including flange means extending from the periphery of said second wheel and frictionally engaging the periphery of said drive wheel for driving said second wheel in response to rotation of said drive wheel.

5. Marking apparatus as defined in claim 1, in which said rim has a resilient compressible portion adjacent the peripheral surface of said second wheel.

6. Marking apparatus for applying indicia to tops of containers supported for movement along a path comprising a support adjacent said path; a drive wheel rotated about a fixed axis on said support above said path; ink supply means for maintaining a supply of ink on the periphery of said wheel; and transfer means for receiving ink from said wheel and delivering said ink to the tops of the containers, the improvement of said transfer means including a circular rim having an inner and outer surface; indicia means on said outer surface; and contact means engaging said inner surface and maintaining said indicia means in engagement with the periphery of said wheel, said contact means and rim cooperating at a location circumferentially spaced from the point of contact between the outer surface of said rim and'the containers moving along the path to allow vertical movement of the bottom of said rim to accommodate containers of varying heights.

7. Marking apparatus as defined in claim 6, in which said contact means includes a second wheel having a diameter substantially less than the diameter of said inner surface.

8. Marking apparatus as defined in claim 7, further including a support plate supporting said second wheel for rotation about a fixed axis, and adjustable means between said support and support plate for varying the spacing between said wheels.

9. Marking apparatus as defined in claim 8, further including an idler support for rotation about an axis on said plate that is spaced from the axis for said second wheel, said second wheel and roller engaging the inner surface of said rim at circumferentially spaced locations.

10. Marking apparatus as defined in claim 9, in which said rim has an outer compressible portion with said indicia means on the outer surface thereof.

Patentzitate
Zitiertes PatentEingetragen Veröffentlichungsdatum Antragsteller Titel
US948012 *9. Okt. 19091. Febr. 1910Ceramic Machinery CompanyTile-coating machine.
US1876278 *26. Okt. 19276. Sept. 1932Diescher & Sons SPlate catcher and cleaner for tinning machines
US2114378 *26. Juli 193719. Apr. 1938Oxford Varnish CorpPrinting roll
US2114379 *3. Juli 193619. Apr. 1938Oxford Varnish CorpWork decorating method and implement
US2145320 *18. Sept. 193631. Jan. 1939Detroit Moulding CorpGraining apparatus
US2211794 *15. Febr. 193820. Aug. 1940Gyro Graphic CorpPrinting ring
US2698574 *11. Juli 19514. Jan. 1955Visking CorpApparatus for bonding nonwoven webs
US2715024 *7. März 19519. Aug. 1955Johnson & JohnsonStrip feeding device
US2841080 *28. Apr. 19551. Juli 1958John ViscardiRotary web printing device with hollow printing cylinders
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FR1577451A * Titel nicht verfügbar
Referenziert von
Zitiert von PatentEingetragen Veröffentlichungsdatum Antragsteller Titel
US4047479 *28. Apr. 197513. Sept. 1977Kiwi Coders CorporationHigh speed article coding machine
US4446638 *27. Dez. 19828. Mai 1984Abex CorporationDipper tip retaining pin
US4656939 *2. Nov. 198114. Apr. 1987Patrick LasauskasPrinter and inker arrangement for marking conveyed articles
US20030071622 *5. Febr. 200217. Apr. 2003Medrad Inc.Coil Structure with tapered conductive members for improved homogeneity in MRI
Klassifizierungen
US-Klassifikation101/35, 101/376
Internationale KlassifikationB41F17/16, B41F17/26, B41F17/00, B41F17/08
UnternehmensklassifikationB41F17/26, B41F17/16
Europäische KlassifikationB41F17/26, B41F17/16