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Патент USA US3065998

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Nov. 27, 1962
J. E. DRlscoLL
Filed March 2l, 1961
3 Sheets-Sheet 1
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Nov. 27, 1962
J. E. DRlscoLl.
Filed March 21, 1961
5 Sheets-Sheet 2
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Nov. 27, 1962
J. E. DRlscoLL
Filed March 2l, 1961
3 Sheets-Sheet 3
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United States Patent
Patented Nov. 27, 1962
John E. Driscoll, West Springfield, Mass., assigner, by
mesne assignments, to Cesco Container Mfg. Corp.,
Northampton, Mass., a corporation of Massachusetts
Filed Mar. 21, 1961, Ser. No. 97,217
4 Claims. (Cl. 294-87.2)
fFIG. 4 is a cross sectional view taken substantially on
the line 4-4 of FIG. 2.
The carrier disclosed herein is intended to handle
twelve glass milk bottles at one time, to grip the bottles
and hold them for transfer to an awaiting case and there
after release them into the case. .While the jaws of the
carrier are sho-wn and described to handle glass milk
This invention relates -to bottle handling -apparatus and
particularly to a bottle carrier for an automatic bottle
casing machine, i.e., a machine for automatically placing
bottles in bottle cases.
In the art of bottle handling machines, particularly milk
Ibottle handling machines, the practice has developed of
bottles, it will be understood by those skilled in the art
and readily apparent that diíferently shaped jaws may be
provided in the carrier for gripping other types of bottles,
such as paper bottles. Such variation in the jaws to lallow
for the handling of diiterent type bottles may be accom
plished without departing from an important feature of
invention, namely, that the bottles Iare gripped in pairs
accumulating a caseload of bottles and transferring the 15 the
and that the jaws embracing each pair are so mounted in
caseload from an indexing station to an awaiting case by
the carrier that they automatically adjust themselves to
means of a gripper head or carrier which engages the
differences in diameters or cont-ours of each pair of
caseload by gripping the individual bottles at their necks,
so that each bottle is, in elfect, individually
in the case `of glass bottles, or otherwise gripping the top
gripped or the gripping forces on one bottle are substanportions of the bottles, such as the upstanding ñanges of 20 tially
equal to the gripping forces on the other bottle of
certain types of paper bottles. Such gripper heads or
each pair. It is of course to be lappreciated that .the
carriers have heretofore been provided with a plurality of
carrier is intended to -grip and transfer a plurality of
pairs of opposed coacting bottle-gripping bars, one pair
bottles at one time, such as a caseload of bottles, with
of bars for each row of bottles in the caseload to be
gripped, with each -bar provided with jaws or bottle-en 25 the bottles arranged in adjacent parallel rows. The car~
rier disclosed herein grips bott-les arranged in three rows
gaging faces. By moving the -bars toward each other,
of four bottles each.
bottles disposed therebetween and confronting the jaws or
engaging faces, are gripped between the bars for sus
pended transfer to the case. A diñicult problem has
As shown in FIG. 1, the carrier includes a generally
rectangular frame 22 formed of four members 24, ‘26, 28,
and 30 connected together by screw bolts 32.
arisen in that where three or :more bottles `are to be 30
members 24 and 28 can have end iianges 34 and 36 which
gripped between a pair of bars, some of the bottles in the
row are gripped more tightly than other bottles in the row
between the bars because of slight diiîerences in the diam
overlap members 26 and 30 and are provided with ribs 38
which tit complementary grooves `40 in members 26 and
30 to strengthen and reinforce the connection between
the frame members and rigidify the frame. 'I‘he carrier
eter of the glass bottle in the neck portion, or because of
a slight diiference in the contour of the bottle neck, or in 35 frame serves to house and/ or carry the remaining compo
the case of the paper containers because of slight diiîer
nents of the carrier.
ences in the thickness of the flanges of the containers
The frame may be supported in an automatic casing
which project upwardly between the bars. As a result
machine in the fashion shown in U,S. Patent No. 2,899,
of this non-uniform gripping, certain of the bottles are
233, or in any other convenient manner. When following
properly held for transfer to an awaiting case‘while others 40 the teaching of said patent, a pair of the frame members
are loosely held and free to swing or pendulate during
of the carrier, such as members 24 and 28, may be pro
transfer movement. Where the bottles are being entered
vided with grooves 42 and 44 to fit complementary ways
into a cellular crate or case, pendulation of the lbottles
or guides (such as guides 52, 52a, 54, and 54a disclosed
frequently will prevent proper entry of the bottle into the
in said patent) in the automatic casing machine. To shift
case cells. Where paper bottles are being handled, a -fail 45 the carrier along the guides, an inverted V-shaped bracket
ure to tightly grip each bottle in a -row -of bottles may re
46 may be mounted by screw bolts (not shown) on ears
sult in some of the Abottles dropping from between the
48 and 50 of members 24 and 28 to which a piston 51
bars during the transfer movement.
(similar to 80 in said patent) of a lluid pressure cylinder,
The primary object of this invention is to provide a
shown in phantom at 52 in FIG. 2, may be connected.
bottle carrier which will grip the bottles with uniform
Within the frame are four parallel bar-suspending slide
gripping forces on each bottle though the diameter or
plates 60, 62, 64, and 66. An edge of plates 60 and 66
thickness of the bottles in any given row may differ from
is slidably received in complementary grooves 68 and 70
one bottle to another, or though the contour of the bottles
in frame members 24 and 28 as shown in FIG. 2. EX
may differ.
tending transversely of the plates and rigidly secured
Another and concomitant object of the invention is «the 55 thereto by screw bolts 72 are three rigid jaw bars or mem
provision of a bottle carrier in which the bottle-gripping
bers 74, 76, and 78. Such bars hold plates 60 and 66 in
jaws or bars are so arranged and constructed that the
spaced-apart parallel relation and within grooves 68 and
bottles are gripped in pairs, along each row of bottles, and
70. The bars also serve to support plates 62 and 64.
the gripping forces >are equalized as between the bottles of
Each bar is provided at its lower edge with a plurality of
60 bottle-engaging faces or jaws hereinafter described.
_each pair.
Another object of the invention is the provision >of a
Cooperating with the bars 74, 76, and `78 to grippingly
bottle carrier in which the bottles are resiliently gripped.
engage bottles are what may be termed resilient gripping
Other objects, advantages, and meritorious lfeatures will
bars or members. These bars are resiliently supported
within the carrier. There are two such bars or members
more fully appear from the specification, claims, and ac
65 disposed in confronting relation ywith each of the rigid
companying drawing, wherein:
bars. For example, and as shown in FIG. 2, resilient bars
FIG. 1 is a top view of a bottle carrier embodying the
80 and 82 confront bar 74. Resilient bars 84 and 86
confront bar 76, while bars 88 and 90 confront bar 78.
It will be observed that the rigid bar and the resilient con
of FIGS. 1 and 3;
70 fronting bars are arranged to form three parallel chan
FIG. 3 is a side view of the carrier looking in the
nels within each of which the upper portions of a plurality
Vdirection of arrow 3 in FIG. 1; and
FIG. 2 is a cross sectional view taken on the line 2--2
of bottles may be disposed for gripping by the bars and
128 transmits the forces of motion of cylinder piston as
sembly 132 to the resilient bars.
The cylinder piston assembly 132 includes a ñuid pres
transfer by the carrier. In the embodiment shown, the
bars are adapted to grip four bottles within each of the
channels defined by the confronting bars, two bottles be
sure cylinder 134 having a square mounting block 136' se
cured by screw bolts 138 to a -base plate 140 which ex
tends between, and is secured as by screw bolts 142 to
ing kdisposed between each resilient bar and its opposed
rigid bar.
The bars 74, 76, and 78 are shiftable in the frame
towmd and away from their confronting resilient bars,
while the resilient bars are shiftable toward and away
the slide plates 62 and 64. The piston rod 144 of the
assembly 132 is threadedly connected to the bracket 128.
Fluid pressure ports 146 and 148 open into opposite ends
of the cylinder. Pressurization of port 146 by a ñuid
from their respective confronting bars 74, 76, and 78.
In one bottle-casing machine of the prior art where con 10
pressure system connected to ports 146 and 148 (not
fronting bars are provided between which bottles are
shown) shifts the piston rod outwardly of the cylinder.
gripped, one of the bars is fixed and does not move
The reaction between the cylinder and piston rod is such
within the frame while its associated confronting bar
that the bars 74, 76, and 78 are shifted upwardly (con
shifts. In the carrier of the instant application, both bars
shift though it will be apparent to those skilled in the art 15 sidering FIG. l) while the spring-loaded bars are shifted
downwardly, with the result that the bars 74, 76, and 78
following a study of this disclosure that the bars 74, 76,
are shifted toward the spring-loaded bars and vice
and 78 may be rigidly mounted within the frame against
versa. Pressurization of port 148 and exhausting of port
movement if the particular requirements of the installa
146 serves to shift the bars in the opposite direction.
tion require this arrangement.
To determine the distance of movement of the bars,
To accomplish the shiftable movement of the bars 74,
stop rods 150 and 152 are provided. Such rods are fixed
76, and 78, the four slide plates 60, 62, 64, and 66 are
at opposite ends in the frame 22 and are threaded as at
shiftable jointly toward either frame member 26 or 30.
154 throughout a portion of their lengths. Adjustably
To support the resilient bars for shiftable movement, they
threaded on each rod at spaced-apart intervals are four
are each secured to a slide plate which slidably overlies
the upper surface for adjacent plates 60, 62, and 64, 66.
For example, resilient bars 82, 86, and 90 are secured by
screw bolts 92 to the underside of slide plates 94, 96, and
98, respectively. Such slide plates in turn are supported
in slidably overlying relation upon the upper surfaces
of plates 64 and 66. In order to secure the resilient bars
to the slide plates 94, 96, and 98, each bar is provided
with an upwardly extending portion 100, which slidably
underlies in juxtaposed relation the bottom surfaces of
plates 64 and 66. Portion 100 is shaped to provide a
neck 10‘2 which projects between the plates 64 and 66
pairs of stop nuts 156, 158, 160, and 162, and two nuts
of each pair being tightened toward each other to lock
them at adjusted positions along the rods. The two pairs
of nuts 156 and 158 limit the movement of bracket 128
and therefore the movement of the spring-loaded bars.
The two pairs of nuts 160 and 162 are on opposite sides
of ears 16‘4 and 166, which are secured to the base plate
140 and through which the stop rods extend, and thereby
limit the movement of the bars 74, 76, and 78.
Secured as by screws 168 to the resilient bars equi
distantly from the pivotal or rockable support thereof on
the frame are a pair of bottle-engaging face or jaw
and to the upper surface of which the slide plate 94, 96,
deñning members 170. Similar bottle-engaging face or
or 98 is secured. In effect, the resilient bars are therefore
jaw-defining members are secured to the rigid bars 74,
suspended from between the plates 64 and 66 but are not
76, and 78, such as the member 172 partially shown in
secured to them for movement therewith, but rather are
shiftable relative to the plates 64 and 66. Resilient bars 40 FIG. 2. Where the carrier is adapted to handle glass
bottles, the members 170 and 172 may be formed of a
80, 84, and 88 are supported in a similar fashion within
non-scratching material, somewhat softer than steel and
the carrier.
possibly having a somewhat greater coeñicient of fric
It will be noted that there is clearance between the
tion with the glass than would metal. For example,
sides of neck 102 and the adjacent plates, such as plates
members may be formed of nylon, Teflon, or the
64 and 66 (see FIG. l), which permits rocking or pivot
like. Where the carrier is to handle paper containers,
ing motion of the resilient bars in a horizontal plane, such
the members may be and are preferably formed of steel.
as in the direction of the arrows A in FIG. 1. The re
Where the carrier is to handle glass bottles, the members
silient bars are normally held in parallelism with their
170 and 172 are provided with arcuately shaped jaws 174
confronting rigid bars. In order to hold the resilent bars
and 175, jaws 174 being on the rigid bars 74, 76, and 78,
in such parallelism, »and also to provide their resilient
while jaws 175 are on the resiliently supported bars.
mounting when they -are shifted to grip bottles, spring
The particular shape of these recesses in cross section is
means are provided for yieldingly tensioning the resilient
shown and described in United States Patent No. 2,899,
bars toward their confronting bars. Such spring means
233. The recesses of the rigid bars are disposed oppo
are particularly shown in FIG. 4 and comprise the com
site and in cooperative relation with the recesses of the
pression type coil springs 104, one spring for each resilient
resilient bars such that bottles disposed between the bars
are partially encircled at their necks by the faces of the
The upstanding neck portion 100 of each of the re
recesses when the -bars are moved together and thereby
silent bars is provided with a counterbored hole 106 dis
the bottles are gripped and are held against unwanted
posed equidistantly between oppsite ends of the bar and
extending completely through the neck. In coaxial align 60 bend.
Where the carrier is to handle paper cartons, the
ment with the holes in the neck portions are semi-circu
members 170 and 172 may be provided with serrated
lar recesses 108 in the confronting bars 76 and 78.
faces, similar to the serrated faces of the jaw members
260 and 262 shown in U.S. application Serial No.
by screw bolts 114 to the bars 76 and 78, and holding the 65 776,161, filed November 20, 1958, now U.S. Patent No.
Within the recesses are bearing sleeves or the like 1110
with a cap 112, having a semi-circular recess, secured
sleeves in place. A pair of actuating rods 116 and 118
extends through the aforesaid holes and sleeve bearings.
The springs 104 encircle the rods within the counter
The important feature of the invention disclosed in this
application may be appreciated from a consideration of
FIGS. 1 and 4 in connection with the following discus
bores of holes 106 with spacer sleeves 120 and 122 on
each rod received within the bearings 110 and support 70 sion. Assuming that the carrier is adapted to handle
glass bottles, and that a row of four bottles is disposed
ing the rods and abutting the springs at one end. A
between the rigid bar 74 and the resilient bars 80 and
spring abutment plate 124 is fastened by a screw 126 to
82, such as is indicated in phantom outline Iby the bottle
one end of each of the rods while at the other end an
of FIG. 4, when the cylinder 134 is pressurized at
upstanding, inverted, U-shaped bracket 128 extends be
tween and ís secured to the rods by screws 130. Bracket 75 port 146, the bracket 128 will be shifted to the left (FIG.
4) to shift the bar 82 to the left, and at the same time
the bar 74 will be shifted to the right. The bottles will
be engaged by the jaw-defining members 170 and 172
and will be gripped therebetween. Because the bottles of
the row will vary slightly in `their diameters at points at
which the jaws engage lthem, the resilient bars will rock
slightly in the direction of the arrows A in FIG. 1 to ac
commodate for the slight differences in the faces of the
bottles such that the bottles are uniformly tightly gripped
between the bars. This rocking motion of the resilient
bars will ensure a uniform gripping force on the bottles.
The springsy 104 will urge the resilient Ybars 80 and 82
toward the opposed bar 74 and thereby a yielding ten
sion of the opposed jaws toward each other to yieldingly
grip bottles lbetween the jaws on the bars. The clearance
between the sides of portions 100 and the adjacent slide
plates 64 and 66 will permit lthe rocking motion of the
resilient bars. As a result, the machine will accommo
date bottles whose diameters vary slightly and uniformly
are mounted on the bars 74, 76, and 78, determine or ñx
a line of gripped bottles in straight rows while jaws 175
ensure that each bottle is properly gripped.
What I claim is:
1. A bottle carrier for an automatic bottle-casing ma
chine comprising, in combination: a frame to be sup
ported in the machine for bottle transfer movement; bot~
tle-engaging jaws disposed to grip a plurality of bottles
for transfer movement; said jaws arranged in a plurality
of rows of confronting pairs to embrace a bottle between
the jaws of each pair; first means on the frame support»
ing alternate rows of jaws in fixed spatial relation; second
means on the frame supporting said remaining rows of
jaws, said second means including a plurality of mem
bers pivotally mounted on the frame, a pair of adjacent
jaws in a row secured to each member in spaced rela
tion substantially equidistant from the pivotal mounting
of said member whereby said member may pivot as -bot
tles are gripped to distribute the gripping forces evenly
grip them for the suspended transfer to an awaiting case. 20 on a pair of bottles; at least one jaw of each confronting
All of the bottles will be gripped with the same grip
pair being shiftable toward and away from its confronting
ping force and there will be no tendency, as occurred in
jaw; and power means on the frame coupled to said shift
the prior art, that some of the bottles will `be loosely
able jaws to jointly shift the jaws.
gripped and susceptible of free pendulation.
2. The invention as defined in claim 1 characterized
In summary it will be noted that I have provided a bot 25 in that said power means is coupled to each jaw of each
tle carrier for an automatic bottle handling machine
confronting pair to shift >both jaws of each pair.
which comprises a frame 22 with a plurality of pairs of
3. The invention as defined in claim 1 characterized
opposed bottle gripping jaws 174 and 175 mounted
in that each of said members is resiliently mounted to be
thereon and arranged in parallel rows to embrace par
urged in a direction to yieldingly grip a bottle between
allel lines of bottles for transfer of the lines »by the car 30 the jaws thereon and the confronting oppositely disposed
rier. Each row of opposed jaws has the jaws along one
jaws, with said members being rockable in a horizontal
side of the row (jaws 175) mounted for joint and inde
plane to allow variations in distance between the opposed
pendent movement and to this end the jaws along one
jaws of adjacent pairs of jaws.
side of each row are mounted in pairs on a common bar
4. The invention as defined in claim 3 characterized
or member, two jaws to each member, which is rockably 35 in that the jaw of each pair opposed to the resiliently
or pivotally carried by the frame, with the point of piv
otal connection to the frame lying substantially equidistant
between the jaws. By reference to FIG. 2 it will be
noted that the pint of pivotal or rockable support of each
of the bars 80 and 82, as defined by the axis of the rods 40
116 and 118, is equidistant between the jaws 175 of each
bar. The jaws 174 along the other side of each row are
supported for joint movement toward and away from
jaws 175, -but unlike the other jaws are not shiftable
relative to or independent of each other. Jaws 174, which 45
mounted jaw is rigidly supported in ñxed spatial rela
tion with corresponding jaws of adjacent pairs of jaws.
References Cited in the file of this patent
Falkner _____________ __ Nov. 11, 1952
Nagy ______________ __ Sept. 20, 1955
Phillips _____________ _- Dec. 20, 1955
Cella et al. __________ __ Aug. 11, 1959
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