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Патент USA US2132231

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Oct. 4, 1938.
Filed July 10, 1937
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‘Oct. 4, 1938.
, J. F. DUNSER »
Filed July 10, 1937
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Oct. 4,‘ 1938.
Filed July 10, 1937'
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JOHN F Dwvsaf
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Patented Oct. 4, 1938
John F. Dunser, Riclunond Heights, Mo.
Application July 10, 1937, Serial No. 153,071
10 Claims. (Cl. 209-122)
This invention relates to improvements in the
apparatus for sorting ?exible sheet material,
such as paper or other stock, and has particular
reference to a novel machine for sorting checks,
5. sales slips, coupons and the like.
The principal objective of the invention is the
provision of an improved sorting machine de
signed to obviate the tedious and time con
suming hand methods of sorting cancelled checks
10 and the like, which in nearly all cases, require a
manual handling of each check during the sort
ing process. A further objective is the provision
of a sorting machine which in the number and
arrangement of parts and in the operation there
15 of, effects distinct improvements over existing
machines and devices for the same or similar
In accordance with the foregoing, an object of
the invention resides in the provision of an im
20 proved machine by which a quantity or stack of
checks or other units of ?exible sheet matter,
each bearing a numerical, alphabetical or other
symbol of designation and arranged with respect
to such designations in a disorderly or other non
sequential manner, may be sorted and arranged
in a sequential or other desired order, according
to the designating symbols appearing on the
Another object resides in the provision of a
sorting machine for the purpose described, which
includes in operative combination, a unit sep
arating and feeding mechanism, a movable de
part, outside of its original true structure plane.
A further object is attained in the provision
of a powered drive for the unit separating and
feeding mechanism, the operation of which is
controlled by the operating mechanism for the
pocket bearing device, the control arrangement
being such that the powered drive is operated
substantially coincidentally with the positioning
of any one of the pockets in receiving relation
to the feeding mechanism.
A still further object resides in the provision
of an improved machine for the purpose de 15
scribed, which is comprised of but few parts ar
ranged and assembled in a compact manner, and
which is positive and efficient in operation.
Further objects and advantages will appear
from the following description, ‘and from the 20
drawings, in which:
Fig. 1 is an assembly plan view of a preferred
embodiment of the invention; Fig. 2 is a sec
tional elevation of the machine, as taken along
line 2—2 in Fig. 1, this view showing the operat
ing mechanism for the movable device or tray
supporting the unit or check-receiving pockets;
Fig. 3 is a sectional elevation of the machine as
taken along line 3-3 in Fig. 1, this view showing 30
the separating and feeding mechanism; Fig. 4
is a sectional elevation as viewed from line 4-4
and operating mechanism associated with the
tray and unit-receiving pockets; Fig. 5 is an en
larged detail elevation of a part of the tray mech
anism, as viewed from line 5-5 in Fig. 4; Fig. 6 35
is a sectional elevation of the machine, as taken
pocket bearing device, adapted for selectively po
liver to such pocket one or more of the units
to be sorted.
A further object is attained in the provision
in combination with a unit separating and feed
ing mechanism, of a movable device or tray hav
ing a plurality of unit-receiving pockets or com
partments arranged in parallel adjacence, and
operating mechanism for the tray, adapted for
positioning any selected one of the pockets rela
tive to the feeding mechanism, so as to receive
one or more units delivered thereto by the feeder,
the tray operating mechanism including a ro
tatable dial or key-board by which any one of
the pockets may be selected for disposition in
receiving relation to the feeder.
Yet another object of the invention is attained
in an improved feeding mechanism for checks
extent‘ or nature of pre-folding or other deforma
tion tending to cause the ?exible unit to lie in
vice bearing a plurality of unit-receiving pockets
sitioning any one of the pockets relative to the
feeding mechanism, so that the feeder may de
so designed as to feed all of the checks in a
uniform manner, irrespective of the direction,
or like ?exible sheet units, the mechanism being
in Fig. 1, the section being taken through the
from line 6-4 in Fig. 1, showing further details
of the mechanism; Fig. 7 is an enlarged frag
mentary section taken along line 1-—‘i inv Fig. 6, 40
showing details of a preferred form of control
mechanism in association with an'electric circuit
and an operating motor for the machine; Fig. 8
is an enlarged fragmentary elevation of the ma
chine, as viewed from line 8—-8 in Fig. 3, show 45
ing details of the separating and feeding mecha
nism; Figs. 9 and 10 are enlarged fragmentary
sections of the machine as taken respectively,
along lines 9-—9 and lll—l0 in Fig. 3, these views
showing portions of the feeding and separating 50
mechanism; Fig. 11 is an enlarged fragmentary
section of the machine as viewed from line I l-ll
in Fig. 1, this view showing certain elements of
the feeding mechanism; Figs. 12, 13, 14 and 15
are diagrammatic views of the separating and 55
2,182,28 1
illustrating the cycle of _
against by the pusher plate II. The element Ila.
of opposite wall section I‘, against which rests
operation of the unit separating and feeding
mechanism, and Fig. 16 is an enlarged elevation
vides additional lateral support therefor, and
further by reason of the V-shape'form of this
feeding mechanism in four di?erent operative
positions, theseviews
the left end portion of the check‘ stack, pro- ,
of a detail of the mechanism, as viewed from
line I6--I8 in Fig. 8.
ing guide for the left end of each check sep
arated from the stack in the sorting process.
The guide function of this element will appear
more fully hereinafter. With respect to the 10
pocket formed by the walls I3 and I5, this serves
Referring now to the drawings by suitable
characters of reference, III designates generally,
a rectangular, box-like frame structure of rela
10 tively shallow vertical dimension. The frame
which may be formed of any suitable material,
to con?ne the right hand end of each check
preferably a metal casting, is provided with a
against movement toward wall I3 during certain
stages of operation upon the check to remove
removable bottom plate II forming a closure for
the frame, this plate serving also to support cer
it from the stack, as will hereinafter appear.
Turning now to the check separating and feed
15 tain elements of the mechanism, as will later
appear. The top I2 of the frame provides the
principal supporting base for the machine.
wall, the element lib thereof serves as a direct
A magazine or container for the units to be
sorted, is provided on the base I2 near the rear,
20 right~hand section of the frame iii, the container
being formed by a pair of parallel, side wall ele
ments I3 and Il secured to the base I2 in any
suitable manner, and spaced as shown, to ac
ing mechanism which functions to mechanically
separate checks from the stack and then deliver
them to check-receiving pockets or compart
ments, a combined electric motor and reduction 20
gear unit denoted generally at 24 (Fig. 3) is dis
posed, by preference, within the frame structure
III and is secured upon the bottom plate II. The
commodate the dimensions of the units to be
sorted. In the present example, the units are
cancelled checks, and for convenience and
brevity in the following description, but without
limitation, these will be referred to as “checks".
The wall I3 has at its forward end, an inwardly
30 extending wall section I5 which is preferably
formed integrally with wall I3, and disposed at
substantially a right angle thereto. Arranged in
motor unit serves to drive a vertically arranged,
operating shaft 25 for the mechanism, with the
driving connection thereto effected in any suit
able manner, as by the bevelled pinion 2G op
erated by the reduction gear, enmeshing a bev
elled gear 21 keyed to shaft 25. The shaft ends
are suitably journalled in bearing elements 28 on 30
the base I2 and bottom plate II, and as shown in
a similar manner, but in association with wall I4,
is a substantially V-shaped wall section I6 com
35 prised of a wall element IBa in engagement with
wall I4, and a wall element IBb forwardly there
of. The apex portion of the wall section is di
rected toward the free edge of wall section I5.
The inward extent of wall section I5 is preferably
'40 approximately one-fourth the distance between
walls I3 and I4, while that of the wall section
I6 is somewhat less, the space intervening these
sections being left open so that the check sep
arating and feeding mechanism hereinafter to be
described, may operate upon the checks, denoted
generally at H, which are stacked on edge in
convenient quantity in the magazine. As shown
in Fig. l, the wall element I6a is disposed slightly
rearwardly of the plane of wall I5, this arrange
ment serving to produce a curve in the check
stack H, the curve extending inwardly of the
magazine and toward the wall I4. Thus, the
forwardmost check exposed between wall sections
I5 and I6, is definitely curved, whereby to aid
the function of the check separating device, as
will readily appear hereinafter. The stack of
checks is constantly urged forwardly toward the
wall sections I5 and I6, by a pusher plate I8 ar
ranged for sliding movement between the side
60 walls I3 and I4. Plate I8 is carried by tubular
elements I9 which are sleeved upon fixed rods 20
secured to standards 2I supported upon the rear
edge portion 22 of the base I2. Within the tu
bular elements I9 are suitable compression
springs 23 which abut the free ends of rods 20,
and which serve to urge the elements I9 and
pusher plate I8 toward the checks I'I, whereby
the stack of checks to be sorted, is constantly
urged forwardly in the magazine.
It will be observed that the side wall I3 and
70 the wall section I5 cooperate to form a well
defined pocket for the right hand end portions of
the checks (Fig. 1), and further, that the wall
section I5 provides the 'major lateral support for
75 the check stack which is constantly urged there
Fig. 3, the upper end of the shaft extends through
the base I2 for connection to a crank arm 29,
the connection of the crank arm to the shaft end
being effected preferably in an adjustable man 35
nor, as by a set-screw (not shown). To the free
end of the crank is pivotally connected one end
of an arm 30 forming part of a substantially L
shaped member or bar 3 I, the bar having a second
arm 32 extending at substantially a right angle
to the arm 30, toward the forward side of the
check stack I'I. Arm 30 of the bar is slidably
supported by a vertical standard 33, (Figs. 3 and
9), the standard being secured to the base I2, or
formed of pivotally related portions in a manner 45
permitting axial pivotal movement of its guide
portion engaging arm 30, whereby to allow both
pivotal and displacement movements of the bar
3| in the plane of the arms 30 and 32. It will
be observed that the end of the arm 39 which is 50
connected to the crank 29, is confined to a cir
cular movement only, and that as a result this,
and the pivotal and sliding support of the bar by
the standard 33, the free end 3| of arm 32 will
have a compound movement. The resulting 55
movement thereof will be not only toward and
from the checks, but a wiping movement hori
zontally across the exposed surface of the fore
most check, in a direction from left to right (Fig.
1) when the crank 29 is rotated in a counter 60
clockwise direction, (Fig. 1) as indicated by the
arrow. This movement of the arm end 34 is
utilized for effecting a separation of the checks
from the stack, one at a time, in the manner now
to be described.
As shown particularly in Fig. 9, the end 34 of
arm 32 operatively supports a vertically arranged
member 35 which carries a friction element 36
formed of sponge rubber or other soft friction
gripping material. Operation of shaft 25 to ro 70
tate crank 29 in a counterclockwise direction,
will actuate the bar 3|, say from the position
thereof in Fig. 1, through the two positions indi
cated in the illustrations of Figs. 12 and 13.
Thus, the friction element 36 is moved succes 75
sively toward the left end of the checks (Fig. 1)
hereinafter to be described, the roller 49 as shown
but out of contact with the front or forward
in Figs. Land 10, being located substantially in
most check, and thence horizontally across the .the widest portion of the V-shaped wall section
curved face of the front check from left to right,
the friction element being both pushed laterally
against the check stack and swept in an arc
across the surface of the front check, whereby
to frictionally grip this check to move the left
portion thereof from the element IGa of wall ‘
10 section l5, and toward the right hand portion
thereof which is retained in the pocket formed
by the magazine walls I 3 and I5. The result is
l6, /and rotatively' journalled in bearings 58.
Roller 49 like roller 48, is, by preference, formed
of relatively soft rubber or other similar friction
material. To facilitate the entrance of a check _
between the rollers, the roller 48 is initially dis
placed from roller 49 through pivotal movement
of member 42, in the cycle of operation of the
mechanism, as will presently appear. It is to be
noted here that the forward element l6b of the
a curvilinear de?ection of that portion of the ' V-wall i5, serves as a guide for directing the left
front check between the friction element and the end of a check separated from the stack as here
free edge of wall section I5, the bending, buckling tofore described, to and between the rollers 48
or crimping effect being illustrated at 31 in and 49. Moreover, the standard 46 supporting 15
Fig. 13. As the bend is produced, the friction
element is retracted from frictional engagement
with the check, and substantially simultaneously
20 with this retraction of the friction element, the
bend is very suddenly straightened or ?attened
by mechanism later to be described. Since the
right hand section of the check is retained by the
the upper end of roller shaft 44 serves in addi
tion, as a means ‘for preventing the left. end
portion of a. check from displacement forwardly
of the large roller 48, during the function of 20
the mechanism to deliver the check to the rollers.
As the roller 48 comprises the driving element of
the check feeding mechanism, it is adapted to be
walls I3 and i5 against any displacing movement - rotated from thelarge friction wheel 38 through
to the right ‘(Fig. 1), the straightening of the the smaller friction wheel 48, by a gear 52 ar
bend 31 results in displacement of the left end
' portion of the check toward the wall section I6,
and by reason of the V-shape of this wall,_the
left end of the check is not returned to its origi
30 nal position in the check stack, but is directed
‘by the wall element lib thereof, to a position
toward and between feeder rolls which are now
to be described, together with the mechanism
for straightening the check bend 31.
As best appears in Figs. 3, 8, 10 and 11, the
check feeding mechanism includes a large fric
tion'wheel 38 operatively secured to the drive
shaft 25 and located within the frame Ill. This
ranged coaxially of and operatively secured to
wheel 48, and a pinion element 53 operatively
secured to the roller shaft 44 and enmeshing the
gear 52 (Fig. 11). In order to insure a positive ‘
drive between friction wheels 38 and 40, the piv 30
oted member 42 is biased by a suitable spring
54, in a direction to effect a frictional driving
tension between these elements. Moreover spring
54 serves also, to pivot the member 42 in a man
ner to separate the roller 48 from roller 49, for -
the purpose herein above noted, pivotal displace
ment of the member by the spring however, oc-v
curring only when the large wheel 38 has been
wheel as shown in Fig. 8, is formed with a de
rotatedto register the depression 39 formed in
40 pression or cut-away portion 39- in a section of ' the periphery thereof, with the smaller wheel 40,
the periphery thereof, the purpose served by the the position of the parts in this instance being 40
depression appearing hereinafter. Arranged to shown in Fig. 14.
engage wheel 38 is a smaller friction wheel 48
42 is utilized fur
which is vertically journalled between the arms
ther, to actuate a device for straightening or ?at
tening the bend or crimp produced in a check by 45
ber being supported for horizontal pivotal move
ment upon a pin 43 secured to the base l2. The the pusher bar mechanism 3!. Accordingly, one
wheels 38 and 40 serve as elements of a drive end 55 of a rod 56 (Fig. 8) is pivotally secured to
connection for the check feeding mechanism, as the lower arm 4| of the member 42, preferably
near the free end thereof, the rod being further
50 will now appear. A vertical shaft 44 extending
through an arcuate slot 45 formed in the base pivotally supported by member 51 which in turn, 50
I2, is journalled on its lower end, in the free is pivotally secured to the base I2. all as substan
ends of arms 4|, while the upper end of the shaft tially shown in Fig. 16. _ vThus the member 51
is journalled in the end of a standard 48 which serves as a compound pivot, which permits both
pivotal and displacement movements of the rod
55 extends through a second arcuate slot 41 in the
base, and is secured in any suitable manner, to 56 in a horizontal plane thereof. The reason for 55
the upper arm 4| of the member 42. Thus the the compound pivot member 51 is readily appar
ent, as the rod end 55 connected to the arm 4| of
shaft 44 is constrained to follow pivotal move
ments of member 42. Shaft 44 has secured pivoted member 42, travels through an are having
60 thereto, a friction roller 48 formed of relatively as its center the pivot pin 43 of member 42, while
soft rubber or other similar friction material, the the pivotal axis of rod 56 on member 51 is con 60
siderably offset from the axis of pin 43. As a con
roller preferably being of an axial extent coinci
dent with that of the shaft between the base l2 sequence, during arcuate movement of the end
and the end of standard 46, this being clearly 55 of rod 56, there will occur both pivotal and
illustrated in Fig. 11. Moreover the vertical ex
displacement movement of the rod with respect to
tent of the roller is by preference, greater than its pivotal connection to the end of member 51.
the width of the checks to be sorted, this to Accordingly, by pivotally mounting the member}
assure an adequate frictional gripping of the 51 to the base l2, displacement of the rod 56 is
check by the roller. In this connection, although permitted. Rod 56 on its end portion opposite end
70 not shown, it is preferred to provide the roller
with corrugations of any suitable form as a
means for attaining a positive check-gripping
function thereof.
Roller 48 cooperates with a roller 49 in the
75 feeding of checks to check-receiving pockets
55, extends vertically upward through an arcuate
slot 58 in base I2, and is reversely curved upon 70
itself, in the manner shown in Fig. 3, to form a
grill-like portion or element 59.‘ The grill element
is positioned in register with that surface por
tion of the forwardmost check, which, in the 75
rality of check-receiving compartments herein
check separating process, is outwardly crimped
after to be described, in check-receiving relation
to the feed rolls, as the immediately succeeding
operation of the parts to effect the disposition
thereof illustrated by Fig. 15, serves to effect Cl
through the feed rolls, displacement of the check
toward the check-receiving station on the left of
or buckled as indicated in Fig. 13 at 31.
The operative association of rod 58 and its ele
ment 59 with the pivoted member 42, is such that
during that portion of the cycle of operation in
which the friction wheels 38 and 48 are in driving
engagement, the element 59 will be disposed for
wardly of the checks, as shown in Figs. 1, 12 and
13. During this time, a bend or crimp is produced
10 in the foremost check, in the manner heretofore
described. Then as the depression 39 in the
large wheel 38 comes into register with the
the rolls.
after a full half-turn of the shaft 25. The trail 10
ing edge of the depression 39 in wheel 38 is now
in contact with the wheel 40, and as a result, the
member 42 is pivotally actuated to bring the roller
smaller wheel 40, spring 54 acts to pivot the mem
ber 42 so as to bring the smaller wheel into the
depression 39. The resulting movement of mem
ber 42 actuates the end 55 of rod 56 to effect
movement of element 59 toward the checks, and
into contact with the bend in the front check,
whereby it ?attens or strai'ghtens the bend. As a
20 result, the left end portion of the check is dis
placed toward the feed rollers 48 and 49, since the
right end of the check in this instance, is con?ned
against movement by the walls 13 and I5. It is
desired to note here that the extent of rod 56 and
25 the position of compound pivot 51 relative to the
connection of the rod to member 42, are such that
when the member 42 is pivotally actuated, as
above described, such actuation will effect an im
pact or snap movement of the grill element 59 to
30 ward the check bend and into ?attening contact
The cycle of operation of the check separating
and feeding mechanism is illustrated in Figs. 12
Fig. 15 illustrates the position of the elements
48 into driving engagement with the left end of
the check disposed between it and the roller 49. 15
At the same time, the movement of member 42
effects a' displacement of the grill element 59 away
from the checks, while the movement of crank 29
further retracts the friction element 35 of bar 3|
from the stack of checks. A further half-tum of 20
shaft 25 to complete one revolution thereof, re
turns the elements to the positions indicated in
Fig. 12. However, during this last half-turn, the
friction wheel 38 drives the smaller wheel 40,
and hence through the gear 52 and pinion 53, the 25
friction roller 48 is rotated in the same direction,
counterclockwise, to feed the check through the
rollers 48 and 49 and thus to discharge it into
a suitable receiver later to be described. It may
be noted here that to facilitate the directioning of 30
the check as it leaves the rollers 48 and 49, a
V-shaped guide 64 open at its apex sufficiently
to permit passage of a check therethrough, is
arranged on the discharge side of the rollers. The
through 15. ~Referring ?rst to Fig. 12, wherein ' open apex end of the guide is directed away from 35
35 the rollers 48 and 49 arein operative engagement, the rollers, as shown.
the grill element 59 disposed forwardly of the
checks and the crank 29 and check separating bar
3| disposed in the positions shown, this view
It is preferred in the present example, to speed
up the rate of rotation of roller 48 with respect
to that of shaft 25, in order to assure a complete
ejection of one check before another can be de
livered to the rollers. Accordingly, for purposes
of the presentexample in attaining a rapid or
shows the elements in their initial position, at the
Now with the motor and re
duction gear drive in operation, a substantially
quarter-turn of shaft 25, and hence of crank 29, quick check feed, the speed ratio between the
in a counterclockwise direction, will effect small friction wheel 40 and the large wheel 38 may
through the crank an arcuate sweeping movement -be approximately 3:1, while the speed ratio of
45 of the friction element 36 of bar 3| across the gears 52 and 53 may be about 2:1. Thus, for
face of the front check, producing as shown in each revolution of wheel 38, the friction roller 48
Fig. 13, a bend in the check, as at 31. At this in
will complete approximately six revolutions.
stant in the cycle, theleading edge of the depres
Turning to the check receiving device which is
sion 39 in friction wheel 38 is in contact with the selectively positionable with respect to the check 50
50 small friction wheel 40, and the element 59 is still feeding rollers 48 and”, this device is preferably
forwardly of the check bend 31. Fig. 14 illus
comprised of a platform or tray 65 which is ar
trates the position of the elements after the shaft ranged at the left section of the frame It), (Figs.
25 has been rotated about an eighth of a turn be
1 and 2). The top l2 of the frame structure is
yond the quarter-turn position of Fig. 13. In this shown as extending over substantially the right 55
55 part of the cycle, the friction element 36 is partly half of the frame, and the left edge 68 thereof
displaced forwardly or away from the check, while is formed to provide a guide, which in coopera
the depression 39 of large wheel 38 is in register tion with a similar guide 61 formed on the upper
with wheel 48. At this instant, spring 54 pivotally ' left edge of theframe Ill, serves to slidably sup
actuates member 42 so as to seat wheel 40 in the port the tray 85. The guides as shown in Fig. 1, 60
60 depression 39, and at the same time, the move
extend between the front and rear edges 69 and
ment of member 42 effects as heretofore de
10 respectively, of the frame Hi. As shown in the.
scribed, an actuation of grill element 59 against present example, the tray is provided with slide
the check bend 31 in a manner to straighten or rails 68 which slidably engage the guides 66 and
?atten the bend. Also, the movement of member 61, but it is to be understood that in practice, ball
42 as effected by spring 54, retracts the friction or roller types of bearings (not shown) may be
roller 48 from the roller 49, thus leaving a check- ' substituted for the tray rails 68 to reduce the
receiving gap therebetween. The ?attening of the friction at rest, and thereby to e?fect a smoother
check bend 31 by element 59, results in projecting operating tray. In the arrangement shown, the
the left end of the check toward and between the tray is mounted for horizontal sliding movement 70
70 separated rollers 48 and 49, this being aided by along the vertical plane including the axes of the
the directing effect of the portion 16b of wall sec
feed rollers 48 and 49. Thus, the rollers are
tion l6, as heretofore described. It is to be noted ' arranged to feed checks laterally onto the tray,
here that when the parts are disposed as shown
and accordingly, for this purpose the tray is pro
by Fig. 14, the operator must have positioned in a vided
with a plurality of compartments or pock 75
75 manner later to appear, a desired one of a plu
40 start of the cycle.
ets for receiving the checks. The pockets are spring normally urges the stem into its seat in
formed by horizontally spaced, vertical partition the disc, and upon depressing the key, the stem
elements ll extending transversely of the tray 81 is moved outwardly of its seat to provide an '
and secured thereto in any suitable manner. The
compartments are closed on the left side of the
tray, by a wall element 12, while the right hand
ends thereof are open, so that when any one of
the pockets is brought into register with the open
apex of guide 64 on the discharge side of the
10 check feed rollers 48 and 48, a check displaced
from the magazine by the rollers, will be delivered
directly to such pocket.
The supporting frame i8, particularly the por
tion l2 thereof, is so related to the tray for receiv
abutment for a purpose later appearing.
The top ‘surface of each key bears a desired
symbol, as in the present example, the numerals
1, 2, 3, etc., the designations being in consecutive
order and in the present example, arranged in a
clockwise direction. The disc and its key ele
ments are coordinated through the operative con 10
nection between the disc and tray member 85, so
that when key marked “100” is in register with
a stationary index or marker 88 on base I 2, as
shown in Fig. l, the tray will be positioned to
register the rearmost pocket A with the check 15
latter is at a somewhat lower level than the check- I
feeding nozzle 84. Rotating disc 82 in a clockwise
supporting surface of the magazine on the element direction to register key marked “99” with mark
l2. Furthermore, there is preferably provided at er 88, effects a corresponding movement of tray
the right hand edge (Figs. 2 and 3) of the tray, a
65 through the described geared connection, to
20 vertical shoulder, ?ange or ledge ‘Ila. This ar
register the next succeeding pocket B with the 20
rangement is such that as the check is forcibly
nozzle 64, and thus with key “98" and pocket C,
ejected into one of the compartments or divisions
etc. Accordingly, the number of keys on disc 82
of the tray, it immediately falls edgewise into its will
correspond to the number of pockets on
position of repose, at a somewhat lower level than tray 65.
prior to feeding, any tendency to rebound to the
As a means for aiding an operator in effecting 25
right, or toward the feeding mechanism, being
effectively prevented by engagement of an edge through the control disc 82, the registry of a
selected pocket with the check feeding nozzle
or corner of the check, with the ?ange or shoul
64, the key elements 85 are so arranged as to
der ‘Ha.
As shown in Fig. 1, when the rearmost pocket A leave a space between the ?rst and last keys. On
is registered with the check feeding guide 64, the the surface of the disc between these two keys
forward end portion of the tray 85 will overlie and and the disc axis, is marked preferably in a suit
extend forwardly of the front edge 88 of frame l8. able color, a sector 88a. of the disc, the colored
Moving the tray rearwardly, will successively sector providing an index zone by which the oper
register the pockets B, C, D, etc. with the guide ator may judge the direction in which to rotate
the disc, in order to bring a desired key into reg 35
or check feeding nozzle 84, and when the for
wardmost pocket A" is in register with guide 84, istry with the marker 88. In the arrangement
the rear part of the tray will overlie and extend shown, the disc 82 cannot be rotated to pass the
rearwardly of the rear edge 'I8.of frame l8. As colored sector through registry with marker 88,
a means for limiting movement of the tray to the since when the key marked “100” is registered
15 ing the checks, that the supporting surface of the
extremes noted, an abutment 12a is provided on
the under surface of the tray in suitable location
with respect to the tray ends, and cooperating
with the abutment are removable stops 12b and
45 12c carried respectively, by the front and rear
edges 88 and 18 of the frame.
The selective positioning of the pockets with
respect to nozzle 84, is accomplished in the fol
lowing preferred manner: A rack bar 13 is secured
50 preferably, to the under side of the tray 85, the
rack extending the full length of the tray. En
meshing the rack is a gear element 14 which is
journalled in bearing standards 15 secured to the
bottom plate I I. Operativeiy connected to this
gear element is a bevelled gear 16 which enmeshes
a bevelled gear TI on one end of an‘ operating shaft
‘I8. The shaft is suitably supported in bearing
standards 18 carried by the plate II, and carries
at its opposite end, a bevelled gear 88 which en
gages a bevelled gear 8| operatively associated
with a control device 82. The gear 8| is secured
to a stub shaft 83 which is journalled in the base
l2 and extends upwardly therethrough for opera
tive connection to the device 82.
The device 82 comprises preferably, a circular
plate or disc which is provided with a central hub
84 removably secured to shaft 83, and a plurality
of key elements or push buttons 85 arranged
around the peripheral portion of the plate. Each
70 key is comprised ‘of a head 88 presented on the
upper surface of the disc, a shouldered stem
81 extended through the disc and seated in a
shouldered aperture 88 formed therein, there be
ing a compression spring 88 between the head
76 and the disc, all as clearly shown in Fig. 7. The
with index 88, the sector will be to the left of 40
the index (Fig. 1), and when the ?rst key in
the consecutive order, marked “1", is brought into
registry with index 88 by a clockwise rotation
of disc 82, the sector will be to the right of the
index. These two positions indicate the limits 45
of rotary movement of disc 82, as when key “100"
is in registry with index 88, the tray abutment
12a engages the forward stop 12b, and similarly,
when key “1” is registered with the index, the
tray abutment engages the rear stop ‘'20. Thus, 50
movement of the disc beyond these limits to
register sector 88a with index 88, is effectively
prevented. Once this condition with respect to
the colored sector, is established in the mind
of an operator, it becomes a simple matter to 55
operate the control disc 82 properly, in the se
lection of any desired pocket for registry with
the feeder nozzle 64. For example, assume the
position of the parts as shown in Fig. 1, where
in key “108" is registered with index 88 and the 60
colored sector 88a is disposed adjacently to, but
to the left of the index. Now, assume it is de
sired to register key “18" with the index 88.
This can be done only by rotating disc 82 in a
clockwise direction, for to rotate the disc coun
terclockwise to effect the desired registry, would
require the passage of the sector 88a through
registry with the index, and this is effectively
prevented as above described. The reason for
the described limitation of disc movement is 70
readily apparent, for assuming the condition
noted immediately above, wherein it is desired to
register key “10" with index 88, to permit rota
tion of the disc in a counterclockwise direction
so as to carry the sector 8811. through registry 76
with index 88,,would e?ect a movement of tray
85 so far forwardly of the front edge 88 of the
frame, that the rearmost pocket A would be car
ried forwardly of, and clearly out of alignment
with the feed nozzle 84. Hence, the described
limitation of both tray and‘ disc movement, serves ,
to assure at all times, an operative association of
the tray pockets and the check feeding mecha
While it is felt to bev evident from the above
description of the tray 85 and associated control
device 82 as to the arrangement and operation
thereof, it is desired to point out further, cer
‘ tain characteristics of the mechanism.
For ex
15 ample, assume that key “76” is disposed in reg
istry with index 88, and that it is desired to
register key “80” with the index. The operator
may then rotate disc 82 in a counterclockwise
direction to effect such registry. Again, with
20 key “76” in register with index 88, it is desired
to register key “70" with the index. This is
accomplished by rotating disc 82 in a clockwise
to line lead I8, while the opposite motor terminal
is connected’ to switch contacts 88 and I88
through a branched lead I82. The movable
switch contact 88 is connected to line lead- I88
through lead I84 and a manually operated switch
I88. Hence, when arm 88 is pivotally actuated in
either direction from its normally centered posi
tion wherein the switch is open, the contact ele
ment 88 will make contact with either the ele
ment 88 or element I88, whereby to close the 10
motor circuit. Closure of the switch is effected
whenever a'push button is depressed and the disc
82 rotated in the proper direction as heretofore
described, to bring the depressed button into
registry with marker 88, as the depressed stem 81 15
of the key or button strikes the upper end of arm
88, and thereby actuates it to close the motor cir
cuit coincidentally with the registry of the but;
ton and marker 88. The motor will continue to
operate as long as the particular button is held
depressed and in registry with the marker 88. '
In the operation of the system, the operator
direction to bring key “70" opposite the index.
?rst notes the serial number on the front check of
From the examples given, it will appear as a gen
is 10. The operator then manually depressed key 25
marked “10" and assuming the position of the
disc shown in Fig. 1, rotates disc 82 in a clock
wise direction, until this key is registered with
the marker 88. This operation positions that
pocket of tray 85 which corresponds to the key 30
marked “10”, in check receiving registry with
the feeder nozzle 84, and coincidentally therewith,
closes the motor circuit through switch 84. The
motor then operates the check separating and
feeding mechanism in the manner heretofore de
scribed, whereby the front check is removed from
the magazine and deposited in the selected pocket
on tray 85. The operator then rapidly reading
the serial number of the next succeeding check
in the magazine, repositions the disc 82 in a simi 40
lar manner, whereby the operation of the mech
anism is repeated to place such check in the se
lected pocket. In the event that there are several
adjacent checks in the stack bearing the same
serial designation or identifying mark, the oper
eral working rule, in order to attain the greatest
possible speed and efficiency in operation, to actu
ate the key disc 82 in a clockwise direction for
selection of a symbol or number of lower order,
and in a counterclockwise direction to proceed
30 to a symbol or number of higher order, and to
avoid traversing the index 88 with the deadline
area of sector 88a. It has been found to facili
tate operator selection, to dispose the selector
keys in a plurality of rows on the disc, for ex
35 ample, in two such rows of numeral keys, the
even numbered keys in an outside row and odd
numbered keys staggered with respect thereto,
I in an inside row.
Accordingly, from the fore
going, the operational characteristics of the con
40 trol mechanism will be now evident.
Referring to Figs. 4 and 5, the side 8I of rack
bar ‘I8 on tray 85, is serrated or notched as shown,
there being one notch for each pocket on the
tray. Cooperating with the notches is a pawl or
45 ratchet element 82 formed of spring material
and supported by an arm 88 which is preferably
secured to one of the bearing standards 15. Thus
the pawl and notches provide a ratchet arrange
ment which serves to releasably maintain the
tray in position to register a selected pocket with
the feed nozzle 84.
Operation of the disc 82 to position a pre
selected pocket of tray 85 in check receiving reg
istry with the nozzle 84, may be utilized also, to
effect upon such registry of the pocket, operation
of the motor and reduction gear unit 24 to actu
ate the check separating and feeding mechanism.
Accordingly, an electric switch device 84 (Fig. 7) ,
of any suitable type, is secured to the base I2,
the device including in the present example, a
case 85 and a pivoted arm 88 which extends up
wardly through the open upper end of the case,
the arm extending closely adjacent the under
surface of the disc 82, and in registry with the
push buttons 85 and the marker 88. The arm 88
is normally substantially centered in the case,
as by springs 81, and supports a contact element
88 of the switch. Complemental contact ele
ments 88 and I88 are carried by the case 85 in
70 any suitable manner, these contacts being dis
posed on opposite sides of the case and arranged
so that contact 88 may engage either one. Fig. '7
illustrates also, in a diagrammatic manner, the
circuit connections of the switch and motor.
one terminal of the motor 24 is connected
the stack, and say for example, the number noted
ator may continue to hold the proper key de
pressed and in registry with the marker 88, until
those checks have been delivered to the selected
To facilitate removal of the checks from the
pockets on tray 85, the left ends of the pocket
forming partitions 1| are cut away at an angle,
as shown in Figs. 2 and 3, thereby leaving ex
posed the left end portions of the checks. More
over, it is to be noted that the tray 85 and disc
82 may be removed without disturbing the re
mainder of the mechanism, this feature being
provided so that a tray having a particularly de
sired number of pockets, and a disc 82 having the
corresponding number of keys, may be substituted
for those already in use. In this connection, it
is to be noted that when the mechanism is uti
lized to sort cancelled checks or the like, it may
be desirable and most advantageous to sort the
checks initially, into groups, as for example, all
100 series checks in one group, the 200 series
checks in another, and so on. Thereafter, the
units in one group may be sorted into consecutive
order, and thence the same for the units of suc
ceeding groups. Accordingly, the provision for a
ready exchange of trays differing in the number
of pockets carried thereby, fully adapts the mech
anism to a wide range of sorting operations.
-While the check separating and feeding mech
anism is preferably motor operated, as herein de
scribed, provision is made for operating the mech
anism manually, as by a crank arrangement
shown at H0 in Fig. 3. The crank includes a
manually operated handle III suitably connected
to a shaft H2 which extends inwardly of frame
able upon the forwardmost check in said maga
zine, in successive steps to de?ect said check from
the magazine, direct it to said feeder and thence
displace the check into the selected pocket of
H), for operative connection to the shaft (not
shown) supporting pinion 26, this shaft being
the compartment structure.
included in and forming an element of the reduc
scribed, comprising a check magazine, a check
feeder, a reciprocable receiver for the sorted
checks, provided with a plurality of check-re 10
tion gear portion of the motor-gear unit 24. A
10 suitable clutch U3 may be provided as shown,
for disconnecting the hand crank whenever it is
desired to operate the machine by motor unit 24.
In the present example, the handle III is shown
as located on the right side of frame III,‘ as a mat
15 ter of convenience to the operator. However,
the handle readily may be located at any other
convenient point with respect to the frame.
As will readily appear from the construction of
the switch shown by Fig. 7, this switch possesses
20 an inherent function as an automatic mechanical
limiting device.
This is due to the fact that the
movement permitted the arm 96, is the same in
either direction from its normally centered posi
tion, thus effecting a de?nite position of stop of
25 the disc when any selected key is depressed, so
as always to bring the disc to the same predeter
mined stop relation with respect to the index 90,
according to the key selected.
It will further appear that the check-feeding
30 mechanism and tray construction as described,
are fully operative, although with possibly less
speed, even though the rotatable selector disc 82,
and its appurtenances, be omitted. In such case
a ?xed longitudinal scale (not shown) may be
used in cooperation with a pointer or index ele
ment carried by the tray itself, so that the tray
may be directly manually actuated to its prede
termined positions which are indicated by the
reading of such pointer on the ?xed scale. ’
compartment structure, and mechanism oper
The present invention facilitates to a marked
degree, the sorting of ?exible units, such as
checks, sales slips and the like, and further, pro
vides a machine for this purpose, which is com
pact and positive in operation, and requires little
45 attention in the matter of adjustment or repair.
It is to be understood, of course, that the draw
ings and the accompanying description thereof,
relate to the preferred embodiment of the in
vention, and that alterations and modi?cations in
the parts and arrangement thereof, may be ef
fected within the scope of the following claims.
I claim as my invention:
1. In a device for separating and feeding and
sorting individual sheets from a supply thereof,
means for separating and edgewise displacing the
sheets, one at a time, in a substantially ?xed
plane, a receiver formed to provide a plurality
of spaced planes of deposit for the sheets, and
a bodily shiftable assembly of selector keys, a
60 positive mechanical connection between the key
assembly and the receiver, arranged upon actu
ation of the assembly of keys, for moving the re
ceiver and locating same in de?nite positions
with the last said planes in selective, substantial
65 coincidence with said plane of feeding.
2. A check handling machine for the purpose
described, comprising a check magazine, a check
feeder, a compartment structure providing plu
rality of check-receiving pockets, means for po
70 sitioning said pockets selectively in a predeter
mined ?xed check-receiving relation to said feed
er, the pocket positioning mechanism including
a plurality of pocket selector keys, a bodily mov
able frame by which the keys are carried, a
75 geared connection between the frame and the
3. A check handling machine of the type de
ceiving pockets, means for positioning selectively,
any of said pockets in check-receiving relation to
a predetermined ?xed station adjacent said feed
er, the positioning means including a plurality
of manually operable pocket-selector keys, a 15
movable key carrier, a positive mechanical con
nection for translating movement of the carrier"
to the receiver and mechanism operatively initi
ated by said pocket positioning means, for suc
cessively deflecting from the magazine the for 20
wardmost check therein, and directing said check
to said feeder.
4. A check handling machine of the type de
scribed, comprising a check magazine, a check
feeder, a reciprocably mounted check-receiving 25'
tray formed to provide a plurality of check-re
ceiving pockets selectively positionable in a pre
established check-receiving relation to said feed
er, means operable to de?ect from said magazine,
the forwardmost check therein and to direct said 30
check to said feeder, and key-operated mecha
nism controlling the operation of said means and
the positioning of said pockets relative to the
feeder, said mechanism including a displaceable
key carrier, a plurality of keys thereon, and a 85
mechanical drive between the carrier and the
5. A check handling machine of the type de
scribed, comprising a check magazine, a check
feeder, a movable check-receiving member bear 40
ing a plurality of check-receiving compartments,
mechanism operatively associated with said
-member, adapted for actuating the member to
position selectively, any of said compartments in
check-receiving registry with a ?xed delivery 46
portion of said feeder, said mechanism including
a plurality of compartment selector keys, a mov
able table by which the keys are carried, and with
which the keys serve as selective stop elements,
a single substantially stationary stop common to 50
a plurality of the keys, a geared connection be
tween the table and the check-receiving mem
ber, means for delivering the forwardmost check
in said magazine to said feeder, and an operating
device for said delivery means, controlled by said 55
compartment positioning mechanism.
6. A check handling machine of the type de
scribed, comprising in combination with holding
and feeding means for a plurality of checks, a
movable container member bearing a plurality 60
of check-receiving pockets, means providing for
horizontal rectilinear movement of the container
member, an actuating device for said member,
including a plurality of selector keys, a pivotally
mounted disc on which the keys are depressibly 65
mounted, and with which the individual keys
coact to determine the desired extent of rotation,
a mechanical drive connection between the disc
and the movable container member adapted to
effect selectively upon rotation of the disc, a dis 70
position of any one of said pockets, as determined
by the selection of keys, in check-receiving regis
try with a predetermined portion of said feeding
7. In a separating and sorting device for ?ex
ible sheets of a generally rectangular form, means
for supporting a supply of the sheets on edge, and
maintaining the supply with the forwardmost
sheet in substantially a given plane, sheet lifting
and ejecting mechanism operable on the sheet
substantially in the last said plane, and provid
ing a fixed zone of ejection by endwise move
ment, of the individual sheets, a tray formed to
provide a plurality of open-end, sheet-receiving
10 compartmenta-and means for selectively moving
ply, means establishing a substantially fixed zone
of feeding ejection, a reciprocally movable tray
provided with compartments for receiving the
checks as- fed, tray actuating mechanism includ- '
ing a manually rotatable frame and a plurality
of depressible stop-keys thereon, the frame being
mechanically connected to the tray and arranged
for movement in opposite directions to effect a
tray movement with respect to the feeding zone,
and means cooperative with the individual keys, 10
the tray so as to bring said compartments, one
for establishing a predetermined limit of move
at a time, substantially into register with said
ment of said frame, irrespective of the direction
of its'actuation.
zone of ejection, said means including a selector
disc, selector keys carried thereby to determine
15 different stop positions of the disc, and a geared
connection between the disc and tray.
8. In a feeding and sorting device for checks
and the like, means for separating and edgewise
displacing the individual checks, means estab
20 lishing a substantially ?xed zone of feeding ejec
tion', va movable tray provided with compartments
for receiving the checks as fed, tray actuating
mechanism including a manually shiftable bank
of keys and a key carrier mechanically connected
IO OX to the tray, said carrier being mounted for move
ment in opposite directions, the plurality of keys
being arranged with the carrier to determine
selectively the extent of its selected movement,
an abutment cooperating with and common to
30 said keys to establish the predetermined stop po
sitions of the tray, and means associated with
the abutment for initiating action of the sepa
rating and displacing means
9. In a feeding and sorting device for checks
and the like, means for separating and edgewise
ejecting the individual checks from a zone of sup
10. In a feeding and sorting device for checks
and the like, means for separating and edgewise 15
ejecting the individual checks from a zone of
supply, means establishing a substantially ?xed
zone of feeding ejection, a horizontally and re
ciprocally movable tray provided with compart
ments for receiving the checks as fed, tray actu—
ating mechanism including a manually rotatable
selector disc, a positive mechanical connection
between the disc and the tray, the disc being ar
ranged for partial rotative movement in either
direction about its axis, a plurality of selector 25
keys carried by the disc, mechanism including
an electric motor for actuating said separating
and ejecting means, and a switch in circuit with
said motor and arranged to cooperate with any
of said keys, in either direction of disc movement 30
to establish predetermined stop positions of said
selector disc, and adapted concurrently to com
plete a circuit to cause the energization of said
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