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Патент USA US3037776

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June 5, 1952
T. H. ANDERSON ETAL
3,037,763
APPARATUS FOR GUIDING AND smcxmc CONTINUOUS FORMS
Filed Sept. 26, 1960
3 Sheets—Sheet 1.
INVENTOR
FIG.
THEODORE H. ANDERSON
THEODORE F
HAROLD P.
BY’ ‘.247
June 5, 1962
T. H. ANDERSON ETAL
3,037,768
APPARATUS FOR GUIDING AND STACKING CONTINUOUS FORMS
Filed Sept. ‘26, 1960
3 Sheets-Sheet 2
13
J
20
17~
16
-18
FIG. 2
17b
FIG. 4
June 5, 1962:
T. H. ANDERSON ETAL
3,037,768
APPARATUS FOR GUIDING AND STACKING CONTINUOUS FORMS
Filed Sept. 26, 1960
3 Sheets-Sheet 3
United States Patent 0
CO
1.
2
provide an improved guiding and stacking apparatus
3,037,768
especially suitable for stacking continuous 'prefolded
APPARATUS FOR GUEING AND STACKING
CONTINUOUS FORMS
Theodore H. Anderson and Theodore F. Flavin, Vestal,
and Harold P. Wicklund, Endwell, N.Y., assignors to
International Business Machines Corporation, New
York, N.Y., a corporation of New York
Filed Sept. 26, 1960, Ser. No. 58,386
7 Claims. (Cl. 270-—73)
This invention relates to apparatus for guiding and
stacking continuous prefolded paper forms, and more
particularly relates to such apparatus especially suitable
for high speed printing machines and embodying means
3,937,768
Patented June 5, 1962
forms at high speed, such as in high speed printing ma
chines.
Another object is to provide an improved apparatus
of the above type which is less expensive to manfacture,
is more rapid in its response to changing height of the
stack, and is unaffected by the weight of the forms on
the stack.
10
According to the invention, the improved guiding and
stacking apparatus comprises means automatically oper
able to adjust the height of a relatively lightweight throat
providing guide means as necessary to maintain the exit
of the guide means at a substantially constant height
for automatically adjusting the height of a guide through 15 end
(or
within
predetermined limits) above the top form of a
which continuous prefolded and/ or transversely perforat
stack of continuous perforated and/0r prefolded forms
ed paper forms are fed serially so that the exit end of the
as they are deposited on a ?xed bed or platform, which
guide will be maintained at a substantially constant pre
may be the ?oor or a stationary member at a ?xed dis
determined distance from the top of a stack of continuous
tance from the floor.
forms as they are deposited in zig-zag fashion on a sub 20
The apparatus also preferably embodies means per
stantially stationary bed.
In order to assure reliable guiding and stacking of con
mitting adjustment of the optimum distance between the
exit end of the guide means and top of the stack to suit
tinuous prefolded forms, the distance between the exit
end of the guide and the top of the stack must be main
the particular characteristics of the forms being stacked.
more fully explained, the maximum distance corresponds
The foregoing and other objects, features, and advan
tages of the invention will be apparent from the following
The apparatus also preferably embodies means for per
tained at a substantially optimum value, and in any event 25 mitting the guide means to be raised whenever desired to
between maximum and minimum limits. As hereinafter
facilitate removal of the forms from the ?xed bed.
to that at which two folds are in line and uncontrolled
collapse or “back folding” will occur if such distance is
more particular description of a preferred embodiment of
increased even slightly. The minimum distance corre 30
the invention, as illustrated in the accompanying draw
sponds to that at which, if the guide were any closer to
ings.
the top of the stack, the form following the one being
folded would have to bend or deform in order to be
In the drawings:
FIG. 1 is a rear elevation view of a guiding and stack
driven through the guide. The optimum distance varies
ing apparatus embodying the invention;
according to the distance between folds of the continuous 35 FIG. 2 is a fragmentary side elevation view, to en
forms, the speed at which such forms are being fed, and
larged scale, of the left side of FIG. 1, with a counter
the inherent stiffness or rigidity of the forms.
balancing mechanism removed for clarity;
It is known to provide means manually adjustable by
FIG. 3 is a section view, to enlarged scale, along the
an operator to move a guide, such as a throat means,
line 3-3 of FIG. 1;
upward from time to time as the height of the stack in
FIG. 4 is a section view, to enlarged scale, along line
creases; but such arrangements are obviously impractical
4-4 ofFIG. 1 showing a detent mechanism;
for high speed printers because they require constant at~
FIGS. 5A, 5B, 5C are schematic side views respectively
tention of the operator and considerable skill to raise the
showing the maximum, minimum, and optimum distances
throat means at the right times and to the proper degrees.
of the throat from the top of the stack; and
It is also known to control the level of the top of a 45
FIG. 6 is a diagrammatic view of an electrical circuit
stack of forms by providing automatic means for lower
for the apparatus.
.
ing a stack-supporting platform as necessary to keep the
Description
top of the stack at a substantially constant height. How
As shown in FIGS. 1 to 3, the improved guiding and
ever, this type of automatic control is not suitable for
high speed printing machines, especially those of the skip 50 stacking apparatus comprises a generally vertically mov
able guide means, designated generally 10. This guide
line type and/ or those capable of stacking relatively large
means may comprise front and rear transversely spaced
forms into relatively heavy stacks. In skip-line printing
‘grills 11, 12, respectively, each comprising a plurality of
machines, the forms are fed to the printing mechanism
vertically spaced rods or wires having hook-like upper
and therefrom to the stack in intermittent random fash
ion, with varying degrees of displacement and hence ac 55 and lower ends which crook around and are welded to
horizontal .tie bars. At their ends the upper tie bars for
celeration between successive irregularly spaced lines of
the respective grills 11, 12 are secured in spaced relation
printing. It means are provided to move the platform
to maintain the top of the stack at a constant height be
low a ?xed throat means, it is apparent that movement
to outturned ears 13 on respective upper brackets 14,
only those for the left side of the apparatus as viewed in
of the platform will become more sluggish as the stack 60 FIG. 1 being shown in FIG. 2. Similarly, the ends of
builds up and increases the load thereon. Sluggish re I the lower tie bars for the grills ‘11, 12 are secured in
sponse cannot be tolerated in the high speed stacking
spaced relation to outturned ears 15 on a lower cross
plate 16. Each upper bracket 14 has an inturned portion
which projects through and rides in- a vertical slot 17a in
platform must be of sui?cient strength and hence weight
to support a stack of forms of maximum permissible 65 the base of a suitably supported ?xed U-shaped guide 17
required in high speed printers. Moreover, a movable
height and weight, resulting in a relatively high tare
weight for the platform and hence greater inertia. Also,
the distance of the movable support platform from the
?oor will vary according to the height of the stack, mak
and overlies and is screwed to the upper end of a corre
sponding vertical gear rack 18. Each lower plate 16
has an inturned portion disposed below the ?xed guide
17 and underlying and secured to the lower ends of the
racks
The guide means 10 and racks 18 are thus
ing it difficult to remove stacked forms from the platform. 70 secured18.to move
in unison.
The principal object of this invention is therefore to
The racks 18 are movable vertically in unison by re
3,037,768
.
spective pinions 19 carried by a single drive shaft 20 that
is ‘driven by a reversible-type motor M. This shaft is
journaled in bearings (not shown) carried in openings in
the side portions of the ?xed U-shaped guide 17, and the
motor M is carried on a bracket 17b suitably secured to
said guide.
,
,
,
-A movable support means comprises a horizontal tie
plate 21 which is disposed rearward of the rear grill 12
and carries two depending members 22, 23 that, in turn,
respectively have'feet carrying a light source S and a
_ photo-electric cell PC. As best shown in FIG. 3, the
member 23 (and also, though not shown, the member 22)
comprises a downwardly extending arm that ‘has a later
ally extending L-shaped projection formed integrally
4
forms F of different widths. These posts 33, 34 are
arranged at right angles to the light source S and photo
cell PC. As shown in FIGS. 5A, 5B, 5C these posts
assure that the forms F will be constrained to pile evenly
without sliding laterally off the edges of the stack.
The light source S emits a light beam B which passes
across the stack of forms F in a direction parallel to the
planes of the grills 1'1, 12 and between the oppositely
arranged pairs of guide posts 33, 34. So long as this‘
light beam to cell PC passes above the top form F stacked
on the stack, it will be only momentarily interrupted as
the forms sway back and forth toward and away from
the reader as viewed in FIG. 1 (or laterally as viewed in
FIGS. 5A, 5B, 5C). When the stack height increases
with its upper ‘end. The outer part of ‘these projections 15 su?ciently for the top form to block the light beam oif
from cell PC for more than-a predetermined slight time,
on members 23', 22 are lap welded to opposite ends of the
the cell will initiate operation of motor M to elevate the
tie plate 21; and the other parts, which are joined to the
racks 18, grills 11, 12 and throat 28, and the support
arms, extend transversely and have aligned bores 24::
means 21, 22, 23 (and thus the source S and cell PC
which encircle a shaft 24. The arm of'each member
23, 22 has lateral sliding contact within a corresponding 20 then adjustably secured thereto) relative to the stack of‘
forms F. The light source S and cell PC and throat 28
vertical groove 25 provided in the facing sides of the
will be elevated until light beam B can once again con
corresponding racks 18. The racks 18 and arms of each
tinually reach cell PC except for the intermittent momen
member 23, v22 have slidably guided contact with the side
, tary interruptions caused by weaving of the forms across
are well lubricated to reduce friction, or rollers (not ,25 the path- of the beam B after such forms leave the throat
28 and before they are piled on the top» of the stack.
shown) may be provided for the same purpose. Thus,
Operation of the motor M is controlled by an electrical
vthe members 23, 22 are slidably movable relative to their
circuit shown in FIG. 6. As illustrated, this circuit com
corresponding racks 18.
1 Shaft 24 extends horizontallyand parallel to, but just , prises a shut-cit switch 39 which is interposed in a nega
walls of the ?xed U-shaped guide 17. The side walls
forward of, the plate 21. Shaft 24 carries two pinions 30 tive line N and is closed to permit operation of the motor‘
M and opened to prevent such operation and shut off the
26 each engageable with a corresponding rack 18. A
light source S, which is interposed between branches of
knob 27 secured to shaft 24 is manually rotatable ‘for
line N and a positive line B. A relay 40‘ is energized so
rotating the pinions 26 and thereby “walking” the mem
long as the light beam B gets to cell PC and completes a
bers 22, 23, tie plate 21, shaft 24 and knob 27 upwardly
or downwardly relative to the then stationary racks 18 35 circuit across the lines N and B'via'cell PC and relay 40.,
With relay 40 energized, the motor ‘M can be driven one
as permitted .by the sliding ?t provided. by grooves 25
way to move the rack and support ‘assemblage 18, 21, 22,
and the guiding action of guides117.‘ Thus, the position
23'down by closing a normally open manual switch 41
of the members 22, 23 and hence of the light source S’
and photo cell PC can be preadjusted relative to the racks > and thus completing a circuit across the lines N, B via
18 and thereby relative to the guide means-10 secured to 40 one winding of motor M, switch 41 and the front contact
of relay 40. When the light beam B is cut oil from cell
the racks. . The purpose of this preadjustment is to pre
PC, the relay 40 will be deenergized as shown in FIG. 6.
select a desired nominal distance between a throat 28
The motor M will be driven the opposite way to elevate
and the light source S and cell PC, for reasons hereinafter
explained. This throat is de?ned between'the lower or . thew-assemblage 118, .21, 22, 23 whenever the relay 40 is
45 deenergized and completes a circuit across the lines N, B
exit ends of the grills 11, 12 of the guide means.
through another winding of motor M, a normally closed
- 'To maintain this preadjustment and normally prevent
upper limit switch 42 and the back contact of relay 40.
relative movement of the members 22, 23 and hence of
Also, provided switch 42 is closed, the assemblage 18, 21,
light source S and cell PC relative to the racks 18, arsuit
2‘2, 23 may be elevated independently of relay 40 by clos
able holding or latching mechanism‘ is provided. This
mechanism may comprise a detent 29 rockably mounted 50 ing ‘a normally open manual switch 43 to complete a cir
cuit. bypassing the back contact of relay 40 and connect
on a ‘pin 30 carried by an outturned ear 31 on the depend
ing the lines N, B through said other winding of motor M
ing arm of member 22. This detent has a ?nger which
and switches 42, 43. The normally closed switch 42 is
normally engages aselectable one of the'teeth .of rack
18, and is manually rockable out of such engagement " opened to‘prevent operation of the motor M in an as
when the position of the members 22, 23 is to be pread» 55 semblage-elevating direction whenever a projecting piece
46 laterally secured to one of the racks 18 (see FIG. 1)
justed from time to time relative to the racks by rotation '
' strikes'and shifts an insulated plunger 47 against resist
of knob 27 in the manner above explained. .
>
ance of a bias spring 48; or if preferred, switch 42 may be
To prevent the‘ racks 18. and members: 22, z23'from
of ‘a leaf-spring like type: normally closed and rocked '
dropping relative to the ?xed guides 17 due to their
V
V
I
.
weight while said racks and support means are latched 60 open by the plunger 47.
' ‘FIGS, 5A, 5B, 5C illustrate the, maximum, minimum
together as an vassemblage by detent 29, and also prevent
and optimum distances, respectively," at which throat 28
the racks vfrom dropping when ‘the detent is unlatched, a
can be preadjusted above the top form of the stack (or
counterbalancing mechanism 32 is provided. This mech
the bed 38 if no'form's areonthe bed) and still permit
anism a clock-type coil spring’ (not shown) connected at
one end to, and wound aroundthe end of, shaft 20 re 65 the, guiding and stacking apparatus, to function. If the
throat-to-top of stack distance is increased above the
mote-from motor M; or, if preferred, it may be of the
maximum'illustrated in FIG, 5A,, backfolding of the
typeknown in the art as a “negator” spring.
forms 'can- occur; the lower form (the one, just below
A ‘pair of rear guide posts 33 (see‘FIGS. 1, 5A)*and ‘
perforation or‘ fold’ X) can bend leftward instead of right
7 front guide posts 34 are suitably adjustably secured to
' and project upwardly from a stationary bed 38 on which 70 ward’as‘view'ed in this ?gure. If such distance is less
illustrated in"FIG. 5B, the. ‘form will
the forms are stacked between the posts. The posts of ' than’the
tend to deform unduly in‘ the throat 28 and prevent
eachv pair arerpreferably interconnected’ by horizontal
cross bars 35 so that they may be adjusted in unison in- '
smooth feeding and stacking. The optimum throat-to
dependently of the posts of the other pair and relative to
' top-of-staek distance is between these two upper limits,
such as illustrated in’ FIG; 5C.‘v This optimum distance
bed 38 by suitable means (not shown) to accommodate
3,037,768
5
6
can actually be a range of distances well within the upper
and lower limits illustrated in FIGS. 5A and 5B. So as
not to have the motor M operate ‘almost continuously as
stack of less than maximum height, he need merely de
press switch 43 and ascent of the assemblage will termi
nate automatically by and upon opening of upper limit
forms are fed through the throat 28 at high speed, the
circuitry above described is intended to maintain the
switch 42.
nominal throat-to-top-of-stack distance within an opti
mum range.
.
While the invention has been particularly shown and
described with reference to a preferred embodiment
thereof, it will be understood by those skilled in the art
that the foregoing and other changes in form and details
may be made therein without departing from the spirit
The width of this range is a function of the
response time of the cell PC, pick up time of relay 40, and
inertia of the guide means 10, racks 1%, driving pinions
19, etc. However, the nominal distance is preadjusted 10 and scope of the invention.
by rotation of the knob 27, in the manner above ex
What is claimed is:
1. In an apparatus for guiding and stacking continu
plained.
SUMMARY OF OPERATION
ous prefolded paper forms on a bed, the combination of
guide means providing a throat through which such
Assume initially that the nominal optimum distance it
is desired to maintain the throat 28 above the top of the 15 forms are fed serially for stacking in plies in zig-zag
fashion on the bed, said throat being disposed above such
stack has been previously preselected, taking into ac
stack and always lying in a plane substantially midway
count the physical characteristics of the particular forms
between the folded edges of the forms when stacked,
F; that detent 29 was thereafter latched to thereby space
means for sensing the height of such stack, and means
the light beam path such preselected optimum distance
from the exit end of the throat 28; that switch 39 is 20 controlled by the sensing means for automatically mov
ing the guide means translationally upward away from
closed; that a number of forms F have already been
the bed as necessary to maintain the exit of the throat at
a substantially constant preselected distance above the
uppermost form on the stack, said preselected distance
stacked on bed 38 between the guide posts 33, 34; and
that the forms have been piled high enough so the top
form of the stack has just blocked off the light beam B
from photo cell PC.
'
25 being su?icient to permit passage of the forms through
the throat without undue angularity at the prefolds and
As soon as relay 40 becomes deenergized due to the
small enough to prevent backfoldin-g _or uncontrolled
cut off of light to cell PC the various components will
collapse of the forms.
be in the respective positions shown in FIGS. 1 to 4, 5C
2. In an apparatus for guiding and stacking continuous
and 6. The circuit including the other winding of motor
M, switch 42 and the back contact of said relay will be 30 prefolded forms, the combination of guide means in~
eluding two generally parallel closely spaced grillworks
completed to cause the motor M to drive the pinions 19
of low inertia movable only translationally and providing
through shaft 20 and thereby move the assemblage 18,
28, 21, 22, 23, S, PC upward relative to the top of the
stack. Shortly after the light beam B can again get to
cell PC, relay 40 will be reenergized, thereby stopping the
motor'M and hence stopping upward movement of the
a throat through which such forms are fed serially, means
providing a bed on which such forms are stacked in plies
35
in zig-zag fashion after leaving said throat, means for
sensing the height of the stack, and means controlled by
the sensing means for automatically elevating the guide
throat 28, source S and cell PC at the upper part of the
optimum range, which upper part is somewhat above
the top form. The weaving of the forms transversely
across the light beam B will not interrupt the light to the
means translationa'lly a predetermined amount whenever
the height of the stack rises to a point where the top form
on the stack is less than a certain distance from the exit
cell PC long enough to deenergize relay 40. However,
end of the throat, whereby the guide means will be ele
each time the top form of the stack again blocks the
light beam B, the relay 40 will become successively de
energized to raise the throat 28 a given increment and
vated intermittently in increments and asynchronously
then reenergized.
‘Eventually the assemblage 1'8, 21, 22, 23, S, PC will be
according to the thickness and rate of deposition of the
forms as necessary to maintain the exit end of the throat
45 within a de?ned height range above the top of the stack,
said range corresponding to heights which are suf?cient to
permit passage of the forms through the throat without
undue angularity at the prefolds and small enough to pre
47 and opens upper limit switch 42 thus preventing fur
ther elevation of said assemblage by the motor M even
vent backfolding and uncontrolled collapse of the forms.
if the operator should inadvertently close switch 43.
3. In an apparatus for guiding and stacking continuous
50
The forms F should then be removed from the appa
prefolded forms, the combination of guide means movable
only translationally and providing a throat through which
ratus. If different sized forms F are now to be stacked,
the nominal optimum distance should be readjusted ac
forms are fed serially, means providing a normally sta
cordingly by unlatching detent 29, rotating knob 127 to
tionary bed on which such forms are stacked in plies in
effectively reposition the throat 28 relative to the source 55 zig~zag fashion after leaving said throat, means for sens
S and cell PC, and then relatching detent 29. Switch
ing the height of the stack, said sensing means including
elevated to the point where projection 46 strikes plunger
41 is then depressed to activate the motor M to lower the
assemblage 18, 28, 21, 22, 23, S, PC; it being noted that
a photo-electric cell and light source which are disposed
at opposite sides of the stack and so arranged that the
since no forms interrupt the light vbeam B, the relay 40
light beam emitted by said source is substantially parallel
will be energized via cell PC. When the assemblage 60 to the prefolded edges of the forms, and means controlled
is lowered to its starting position, the light beam B will
by the sensing means for automatically translationally
be interrupted by a shield 50 projecting upwardly from
elevating the guide means when the light beam is inter
the bed 38 to cut off the light to cell PC and thus deener
rupted by deposition of a form on the stack thereby to
gize relay 40 to shut off the motor M. This will posi
maintain the exit end of the throat at a substantially con
tively prevent the assemblage from moving down far 65 stant preselected distance above the uppermost form on
enough to damage the cell PC and source and thus desir
the stack, said controlled means being insensitive to tem
ably permit the operator to maintain the switch 41 de
porary interruption of the light beam resultant from the
pressed until the motor stops, without fear of damaging
weaving of forms back and forth thereacross after they
the apparatus.
leave the throat and before they are fully deposited on
Forms F are then ‘fed down through the grills 11, 12 of 70 the stack, said preselected distance corresponding to a
the guide means 10. The apparatus will operate as above
desired value su?‘icient to permit passage of the forms
explained to intermittently elevate the assemblage 18, 28,
through the throat without undue angularity at the pre
21, 22, 23, PC, S in increments.
folds and small enough to prevent backfolding or uncon~
In the event of a misfeed or if the operator desires to
trolled collapse of the forms.
move the assemblage upwardly to facilitate removal of a 75
4. In an apparatus for guiding and stacking continuous
3,037,768
7
prefolded forms, the combination of guide means pro—
viding a throat through which such forms are fed serially,
said throat being in the nature of elongated slots disposed
above and extending in a direction transverse of the stack
across substantially the full width thereof always at a
point substantially midway between the prefolded edges
of the forms when stacked, means providing a bed on
which such forms are stacked in plies in zig-zag fashion
after leaving the throat, means for sensing the height of
8
source is substantially parallel to the prefolded edges of
the forms and is a preselected distance below the throat,
said cell being ‘insensitive to momentary interruptions of
the light beam— from the source during weaving of the
forms back and forth across the beam after they have left
the throat and before they are fully deposited on the
stack, and an electrical circuit including said cell condi
tioned responsively to a prolonged interruption of said
light beam by a form deposited on the stack to activate
the stack, the last-named means including a light source 10 said motor means to move the driven member and thereby
translationally move the guide means and cell and source
for directing a light beam transversely of the stack in a
direction substantially parallel to said edges and slot, and
a photo-electric cell responsive to said beam, and means
controlled by the sensing means for automatically raising
concurrently away from the bed until the light beam is
once again only temporarily interrupted, whereby said
circuit Will be conditioned automatically and asynchro
the guide means translationally a predetermined amount 15 nously according to the thickness and rate of deposition
of the forms as necessary to maintain the exit end of the
whenever the height of the stack rises to a point where
throat at substantially said preselected distance above the
the top form thereon is less than a certain distance from
form last deposited on the stack.
'
the exit end of the throat, whereby the guide means will
6. The combination according to claim 5, including
be elevated intermittently in increments and asynchro
nously according to the thickness and rate of deposition 20 means adjustably connecting said cell and source with said
driven member, thereby to permit preadjustment of said
of the forms as necessary to maintain the exit end of the,
distance to a preselected ‘value suitable for the physical
throat within a de?ned height range above the top of the
characteristics of the particular forms to be stacked.
stack.
7. The combination according to claim 5, wherein said
5. In an apparatus for guiding and stacking a con
guide means comprises two generally parallel closely
tinuous strip of prefolded forms being fed from’ a high
spaced grills of, light weight and low inertia to provide
speed printer at a variable speed, the combination of
means providing a bed on which such forms are stacked
a minimum of frictional contact with the forms and also
be capable of rapid starting and stopping.
in plies in zig-zag fashion, guide means providing a throat
which is always disposed generally above the center of
References Cited in the ?le of this patent
the bed, said throat being movable solely in a substantially 30
UNITED STATES PATENTS
vertical plane and providing an ori?ce through which the
forms are fed serially, a driven member connected to said
guide means, motor means for moving the member, a
photo-electric cell and a light source operably connected
to said member and disposed adjacent opposite sides of 35
the stack such that the light beam emitted by the said
2,525,311
Peyrebnme ___________ .._ Oct. 10, 1950
523,838
748,832
Italy _______________ __ Apr. 19, 1955
Great Britain _________ .. May 9, 1956
FOREIGN PATENTS
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