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May 12, 1959 G. X. BATLAS ET AL 2,886,226
PAPER TOWEL DISPENSER
May 12, 1959 G. x. Batlas Et Al 2,886,226
PAPER TOWEL DISPENSER Filed March 12, 1956 2 Sheets-Sheet. 2
United States Patent Office
Patented May 12, 1959
The present invention relates to improvements in paper 15 towel dispensers, and more particularly is directed to a device dispensing lengths of paper toweling from a continuous strip or web of the latter stored in the form of a roll or a folded stack.
An object of the invention is to provide a dispensing 20 device of unique simplicity in construction and operation and capable of delivering individual lengths of paper toweling from a continuous strip or web of the latter.
Another object is to provide a dispensing device that is adapted, at the will of the user, to deliver either single 25 predetermined lengths of paper toweling from a continuous strip of the latter or multiple lengths of the toweling.
A further object is to provide a paper towel dispenser that is trouble-free in operation and that requires a minimum of maintenance so that it is adapted for installation 30 in public rest rooms and the like where hard usage, and even abuse, may be anticipated.
Still another object is to provide a device for dispensing single or separated lengths of paper toweling from a continuous perforated strip of the latter, and wherein op- 35 eration of the device is effected by exerting a continuous and relatively small pulling force upon a projecting end of the strip, whereby the dispensing operation results from a normal or rational action of the user, so that there is no need for the latter to refer to instructions 40 printed, or otherwise appearing, on the dispensing device to learn the manner in which operation is to be effected.
A still further object is to provide a paper towel dispenser operated by exerting a pull on a projecting end of a strip of paper toweling, and wherein the operating characteristics are such as to permit the exertion of the required pull with wet hands without causing tearing or premature separation of the paper toweling strip. An aspect of the present invention resides in the pro
vision of a dispenser for lengths of paper toweling de
fined between spaced apart, laterally extending lines of, perforations in a continuous rolled or folded strip of paper toweling, which dispenser includes a dispensing roll and a pressure roll between which the continuous strip of paper toweling is passed, so that, as the free or gg projecting end of the paper toweling strip is pulled from ( :> the dispenser, the dispensing roll is rotated, and a cam and spring-urged follower mechanism associated with the dispensing roll to momentarily arrest rotation of the latter at the end of an operating cycle, that is, when a length g0 of paper toweling has been advanced between the rolls,; :i thereby to permit separation of the advanced length of toweling from the remainder of the continuous strip along the line of perforations defining the trailing end of the advanced length, and then to release the dispensing roll 6g for further rotation in response to a renewed pull exerted upon the paper toweling strip.
Another aspect of the invention resides in the provision of a cam and spring-urged follower mechanism that automatically imparts an increment of reverse rotation to y0 the associated dispensing roll after the rotation of the latter has been arrested so that, if a steady pull is exerted
upon the projecting end of the paper toweling strip, the increment of reverse rotation of the dispensing roll ■will cooperate with the steadily exerted pull to ensure separation of the foremost length of paper toweling from the remainder of the strip at the weakened line of perforations defining the trailing end of that foremost length.
In accordance with the invention, a cam and springurged follower mechanism controlling the rotation of the associated dispensing roll includes a spiral cam rotatable with the dispensing roll and increasing in radius in the direction opposed to the normal rotation of the cam with the dispensing roll, the cam having a generally radial shoulder joining the radially inner and outer ends of its spiral cam curface, a follower pin engageable with the spiral cam surface and movable along a rectilinear path extending radially through the axis of rotation of the cam, the follower pin being spring-urged toward said axis of the cam so that, as the latter is rotated during a dispensing cycle, the pin is moved radially outward by the spiral cam surface, and an abutment rotatable with the spiral cam and having a stop surface that extends radially across the radially outer end of the spiral cam and is spaced circumferentially from the cam shoulder in the direction opposed to the normal cam rotation by a distance only slightly greater than the diameter of the pin so that, at the end of each dispensing cycle, the stop surface of the abutment contacts the pin, which has previously been moved into the path of the abutment by the spiral cam surface, thereby to arrest rotation of the cam and the associated dispensing roll, whereupon the pin is spring-urged radially inward between the cam shoulder and the stop surface to the radially inner end of the spiral cam surface where the pin clears the radially inner surface of the abutment to again free the cam for renewed rotation with the associated dispensing roll.
The above, and other, objects, features and advantages of the invention will be apparent in the following detailed description of illustrative embodiments thereof which is to be read in connection with the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, and wherein:
Fig. 1 is a horizontal sectional view of a paper towel dispenser embodying the present invention and taken along the line 1—1 of Fig. 2;
Fig. 2 is a vertical sectional view taken along the line 2—2 of Fig. 1;
Fig. 3 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view taken along the line 3—3 of Fig. 1;
Fig. 4 is a detail view similar to a portion of Fig. 2, but showing the condition of the parts during another phase of the dispensing cycle;
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary plan view of a continuous strip of paper toweling of the kind to be dispensed by the paper towel dispeners embodying this invention;
Fig. 6 is a fragmentary sectional view showing the constructional details of a part included in the dispenser of Figs. 1, 2 and 3; and
Fig. 7 is a diagrammatic vertical sectional view similar to Fig. 2, but on a smaller scale and showing how the dispenser of Figs. 1, 2 and 3 can be employed when the continuous strip of Fig. 5 is stored as a folded stack, rather than as a roll, as in Fig. 2.
Referring to the drawings in detail, and initially to Figs. 1, 2 and 3 thereof, it will be seen that a paper towel dispenser embodying the present invention, as there illustrated and generally identified by the reference numeral 10, includes a box-like cabinet or casing 11 that may be formed of sheet metal and has a back wall 12, a bottom wall 13 joined, at its rear edge, to the lower edge of the back wall, and upstanding side frame plates 14 and 15 that are spaced laterally inward from the side edges of the back and bottom walls and that have outwardly
directed flanges along their back and bottom edges joined,
as by welding, to the back and bottom walls, respectively.
The casing 11 is completed by a hinged cover having a
front wall 16 connected, at its lower edge, to the front
edge of bottom wall 13 by a piano hinge 17 (Fig. 2) 5
and having a height substantially less than that of the
back wall 12 and being laterally coextensive with the
latter, side walls 18 and 19 generally extending rear-
wardly from the opposite side edges of front wall 16 and,
at their upper portions, projecting forwardly beyond the
front wall above the upper edge of the latter, and a top
wall 20 extending laterally between the top edges of side
walls 18 and 19 and having a downturned forward por-
tion 21 that depends to the level of the top edge of front
wall 16 and is offset forwardly with respect to the latter
(Fig. 2) to define a discharge slot 22 between the top
edge of front wall 16 and the bottom edge of the down-
turned forward portion 21 of top wall 20. As seen in
Fig. 1, when the hinged cover is in its closed position,
the side walls 18 and 19 thereof extend parallel to, and
are spaced outwardly from, the adjacent side frame plates
14 and 15, respectively, while the back and bottom edges
of the side walls 18 and 19 overlap the side edges of
the back and bottom walls 12 and 13 and the back edge
of top wall 20 overlaps the top edge of back wall 12 to
close the casing and provide a neat external appearance.
In order to releasably hold the cover in its closed position, the top wall 20 thereof may be provided with a central opening 23 (Fig. 2) adjacent its back edge to receive a ball catch 24 carried by a resilient strip 25 extending from the top of back wall 12. Normally, the ball catch 24 is urged upwardly by strip 25 into the opening 23 and holds the cover in its closed position. However, when the cover is to be opened to permit loading of a supply of paper toweling into the casing 11, as hereinafter described in detail, the ball catch 24 can be pressed downwardly from above and thereby released from opening 23 to free the cover for forward and downward swinging movement about the axis defined by hinge 17.
The upper portion of each of the side frame plates 14 and 15 is formed with an L-shaped slot 26 (Fig. 2) having a vertical part opening upwardly at the top edge of the related side frame plate and a horizontal part extending forwardly from the bottom of the vertical part. The slots 26 of the side frame plates are adapted to slidably receive bearings for rotatably supporting parallel • pressure and dispensing rolls 27 and 28, respectively, between the side frame plates 18 and 19. For example, as shown in Fig. 2, the pressure roll 27 may include a cylindrical body 29 of wood having metal pins or axles 30 projecting axially from the opposite ends thereof and rotatably received in bearings 31. Each of the bearings 31 is in the form of a disc having a diameter greater than the width of the related slot and formed with a central, circumferential groove of sufficiently reduced diameter to there fit into the slot 26.
The dispensing roll 28 may similarly include a cylindrical body 32 of wood preferably having a circumference equal to the length of each paper towel to be dispensed 'and provided with metal pins or axles 33 projecting axially from the opposite ends of the wooden body and rotatably received in bearings 34 having the same general construction as the bearings 31 and also slidably received in the slots 26.
In installing the rolls 27 and 28 in the casing 11, the cover of the latter is opened to expose the open ends of the slots 26 at the top edges of side frame plates 18 and 19. The bearings 34 of the dispensing roll 28 are introduced into the open ends of slots 26 and moved downwardly and then forwardly along the latter to the forward closed ends of the slots 26. Then the bearings 31 of the pressure roll 27 are introduced into the open ends of slots 26 and moved downwardly and forwardly
along the latter until the surface of the pressure roll body 29 contacts the surface of the dispensing roll body 32.
The pressure roll 27 is urged forwardly against the dispensing roll 28 and the latter is, in turn, held in the position where its bearings 34 are against the forward closed ends of the slots 26, by tension springs 35 which, at their front ends, are connected to anchors or pins 36 projecting from the side frame plates 14 and 15 and, at their back ends, are removably looped around pins 37 10 projecting from the pressure roll bearings 31 (Figs. 1 and 3).
As seen in Fig. 2, the front ends of the slots 26, and, hence, also the axis of rotation of the dispensing roll 28, are disposed so that a vertical plane tangent to the roll 15 28, at the front of the latter, will extend through the discharge slot 22, whereby the paper toweling to be dispensed can pass upwardly between the rolls 27 and 28 and then downwardly around the latter to exit from the casing 11 through the slot 22. 20 The dispenser 10 is intended to dispense lengths of paper toweling from a continuous strip or web of the latter, as indicated generally by the reference numeral 38 on Fig. 5, and wherein the individual lengths 39 of paper toweling are defined between laterally extending 25 lines of perforations 40 that are spaced apart by distances equal to the circumference of the dispensing roll 28. The continuous strip or web 38 of paper toweling may be wound into a roll 38a (Fig. 2) for storage within the casing 11, or, as indicated in Fig. 7, the continuous 30 strip or web 38 can be folded in alternately opposed directions about the lines of perforations 40 and fold lines intermediate the latter to provide a folded stack 38b for storage within the casing or cabinet 11.
In order to support the roll 38a of paper toweling, 35 the side frame plates 14 and 15 are provided with slots 41 (Fig. 2) extending downwardly and rearwardly from the front edges thereof to receive and retain the opposite ends of a support rod or core 42 on which the roll 38a is rotatably mounted. It has been found that the direct 40 feeding of the paper strip from the roll 38a between the rolls 27 and 28 sometimes results in over-running of the roll 38a during the removal of paper from the latter, and that it is desirable to exert a drag or braking action on the paper strip 38 between the roll 38a and 45 the pinch between rolls 27 and 28. Such a drag or braking action can be exerted by providing a rod 43 (Figs. 1, 2 and 3) that is alternatively supported, at its opposite ends, in upwardly opening recesses 44 or 45 in the upper edges of the side frame plates 14 and 15. SO The recesses 44, which receive the rod 43 when the strip 38 is stored in the form of a roll 38a within the cabinet or casing 11 (Fig. 2), are disposed at locations in back of the vertical plane passing through the axis of pressure roll 27, while the recesses 45, in which the rod 43 is 85 supported when the strip 38 is stored in the form of a folded stack 38b (Fig. 7), are disposed at locations in front of the vertical plane passing through the axis of the pressure roll. In either case, the strip 38 is passed upwardly, from the roll 38a or stack 386, in back of the 00 pressure roll 27, then over the rod 43 from the back to the front, and then down and under the pressure roll prior to passing upwardly between the latter and the dispensing roll 28. With the strip 38 passed around the rod 43 in the manner described above, it is ap65 parent that relatively short (Fig. 2) or relatively long (Fig. 7) portions of the paper strip 38 moving in opposite directions are brought into frictional contact with each other against the surface of the pressure roll, thereby to exert a smaller or greater frictional drag upon 70 the strip 38 prior to the passage of the latter between the rolls 27 and 28. This frictional drag has proved to be effective in exerting an ironing action on the strip to prevent wrinkling of the latter between the pressure and dispensing rolls. When the strip 38 is stored in the form 75 of a folded stack within the cabinet or casing 11, as