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Патент USA US3066770

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Dec- 4, 1962
w. T. BRIGHAM r-:TAL
3,066,760
CHECKOUT COUNTER
Filed Jan. 17, 1961
2 Sheets-Sheet 1
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Dec. 4, 1962
w. T. BRIGHAM ETAL
3,066,760
CHECKOUT COUNTER
Filed Jan. 17, 1961
2 Sheets-Sheet 2
United States Patent Orifice
3,066,760
Patented Dec. 4, 1962
l
2
3,066,764)
cal activity and therefore, a relatively high degree of in
efficiency into the checking operation. In the past, some
checkout Counter package transport aids have provided
CHECKGUI‘ COUNTER
William T. Brigham, 3 E. 77th St., New York, NSY.,
and Leonard .lohn Gern/eck, 26d Cantar-bury Drive,
Ramsey, NJ.
Filed Jan. 17, 1961, Ser. No. 83,257
10 Claims. (El. ‘1‘86-1)
powered means which were effective to deliver one pack
age after the next to a checking location, however, the
use of expensive powered checkout counters has proven
far too expensive, both in original cost and in mainte
nance, for a larger portion of the self-service retail outlets
that have a need for an inexpensive etiicient transport aid
`The present invention relates generally to checkout
counters for use in self-service retail stores and specifical 10 for use in checkout counters.
ly to a checkout counter incorporating transfer means to
Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to
carry packages longitudinally along the counter.
provide a checkout counter incorporating package trans
The use of checkout counters in self-service super
fer means which obviates one or more of the aforemen
markets and the like is well known. The usual checkout
tioned disadvantages of the prior art devices. Specifically,
counter includes an elongated upper surface at one end
it is an object of the present invention to provide transfer
of which the customer deposits the individual items to be
mechanisms in a checkout counter which is relatively in
purchased. The cashier, who is situated on the side of the
expensive to manufacture and maintain and which pro
counter opposite from the customer, registers each of the
vides an eñicient and easy to operate method of transport
individual items on a cash register and moves the items
ing individual packages along the length of the checkout
toward the opposite end of the counter. When each of 20 counter.
the individual items is tabulated and the total recorded
lt is further Within the contemplation of the present
on the cash register, the cashier or an assistant then places
invention to provide a checkout counter incorporating a
the individual purchases in one or more -appropriate con
tainers. While one customer’s purchases are being tabu
package transfer mechanism whereby a group of packages
deposited at one end of the checkout counter may be
lated and bagged by the cashier, another customer may 25 moved to a checking location at which the individual
deposit his purchases at the deposit area at one end of
packages may be registered by the cashier, with the group
the checkout counter. The process of tabulation and
of packages continuing its motion such that each package
movement of the individual items along the length of the
may be tabulated in turn at the checking location by the
checkout counter is then repeated.
cashier.
A variety of differing means have been employed to 30
It is a further object of the present invention to provide
aid the cashier in moving the individual packages along
transfer means in a checkout counter which utilizes the
the length of the checkout counter, however, these means
generally have one or more disadvantages which prevent
their universal acceptance. For example, one of the
force of gravity to transfer the number of packages along
the length of the checkout counter.
.
It is still a further object of the present invention to pro
vide a transfer device in a checkout counter which is ef
fective to move a pile of packages from a package-deposit
location at one end of the checkout counter to a package
more popular devices comprises a U-shaped member posi
tioned at one end of the counter which, when pulled by the
cashier towards the other end of the counter, is effective
to scoop up the individual packages and transport them
checking location adjacent the cashier such that the de
along the checkout counter towards the cashier. The
posit location is immediately clear for the deposit of
U-shaped member is then returned to its posit-ion at the 40 packages by the next successive customer.
deposit end of the counter such that the next customer
In accordance with an illustrative embodiment which
may place his packages in front of the bight portion of the
demonstrates features of the present invention, there is
U-shaped member. Although this device has achieved
provided a checkout counter for advancing packages from
wide popularity, it is extremely difficult for the cashier to
a package-deposit location to a package-checkout location
move the U-shaped member against the heavy loads often
comprising a frame upon which is mounted an elongated
encountered. In addition, the high degree of strain which
package-deposit platform. The deposit platform is in
is placed upon the device itself has resulted in a relatively
clined downwardly relative to the horizontal from an
large number of mechanical failures. More complicated
upper end to a lower end and is formed of a plurality
devices have been employed to aid in the transport of in
of spaced apart platform members whose upper surfaces
dividual packages alo-ng the length of the checkout coun 50 provide a package-deposit surface. A stop member is
ter which have employed a variety of power driven con
mounted transversely on the frame defining the checkout
veyors and the like. Although such devices operate rela
location adjacent the lower end of the package-deposit
tively eñ‘iciently and are effective to ease the cashier’s
burden, they are relatively expensive to purchase and to
platform. A package-pickup and transport platform is
55 provided and is adapted to lift packages off the package
maintain.
deposit platform and to advance the same under the in
«Among the more important features of a desirable
fluence of gravity toward and into contact with the stop
checkout counter, in addition to the requirement that it
member. The package-pickup and transport platform in
easily transports packages along the length of the counter,
cludes a plurality of spaced apart elongated transport plat
is that each of the individual packages be delivered to a
60 form members having upper surface which effectively pro
specified checking location. The cashier must individual
ly inspect each package, turning such that the stamped
price designation is visable. If the customer’s packages
are deposited on the counter, even if moved from the end
vide a package transport surface. These transport plat
form members are spaced apart a distance such that they
are adapted to lit between the deposit platform members.
Carriage means are provided which include cooperating
of the counter to the position of the cashier, the cashier
rollers and inclined tracks mounting the transport plat
must sort through the mass of packages which may extend 65 form for movement, within the checkout counter and
a good distance down the length of the counter. This re
under the influence of gravity, from a package-pickup
quires that the cashier tabulate packages at various loca
location at the package-deposit location toward the pack
tions along the length of the counter, or alternatively, in
age-checkout location at the stop member. Actuating
dividually move the packages by hand a relatively large 70 means are operatively connected to the transport platform
distance along the checkout counter to the checking loca
and the carriage means for movement of the transport
tion thereby introducing a relatively high degree of physi
surface from a retracted position below the package-de
3,066,760
3
d.
upper surface at one end of the counter 1G in the present
posit surface of said package-deposit platform to an op
erative position above the package-deposit surface of said
illustrative case, the deposit platform 22. The cashier,
who is located at the intermediate portion of the check
out counter 10, then transports the packages P across the
checkout location 24, which is defined by the cross mem
package-deposit platform when the transport platform is
in its pickup location such that packages may be lifted
off the package-deposit platform and onto the pickup and
ber 26, to the bagging area provided by the discharge plat
form 28 which is positioned lbetween the side walls 14,
transport platform. The carriage means are effective to
progressively advance the pickup and transport platform
16 and between the end wall 2t? and the cross member
and its contained packages, under the influence of gravity,
26. A pair of complementary tracks 39, 32 are mounted
relative to the stationary package-deposit platform in
cident to the checkout of packages at the checkout loca 10 at a slight angle to the horizontal on the side walls 14,
16, respectively extending from under the deposit area
tion, A discharge platform is mounted on the frame ad
22, down the length of the checkout counter 10, under
jacent the stop member and extends away from the sta
the cross member 26 and below the discharge platform ‘
tionary package-deposit platform and is adapted to re
ceive successive packages after tabulation by the cashier
2S. A pickup and transport platform, generally desig
nated by the numeral 34, is mounted for movement on the
at the checkout location.
The above brief description, as well as further objects,
tracks 30, 32 and is adapted to transport the pacakges P
from the deposit platform 22 to the checkout location 24.
The deposit platform 22 is formed of a series of deposit
best appreciated by reference to the following detailed
platform members 36 which are mounted within the
description of a presently preferred embodiment, when
taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, 20 checkout counter lil parallel to the side walls I4, 16 in
the vertical plane and parallel to the track Sil, 32 of the
wherein:
horizontal plane. In the present illustrative embodiment,
FIG. l is `a side elevational view of a checkout counter
as best seen in FIG. 3, nine such deposit -members 36 are
according to the present invention with portions broken
provided and are mounted within the checkout counter
away for the sake of clarity. The pickup and transport
platform is shown in full line in its retracted position 25 It? by means of the bracket 33 secured to the end wall 1.8
at the right hand end as viewed in FIG. l and by means
at the checking location, and in phantom at its pickup lo
of a depending mounting element 4t? which is hung on the
cation at the deposit location. Packages are shown de
underside of the cross brace 26. The individual deposit
posited at one end of the checkout platform at the deposit
platform members 36 are uniformly spaced from each
area;
features and advantages of the present invention will be
FIG. 2 is an elevational view of a portion of the de
30 other across the width of the checkout counter It?.
The
upper surfaces 36a of the members 36 provide the package
support means of the deposit platform 22 upon which the
customer may place his packages P. The spacings be
vice shown in FIG. l with portions broken away for the
sake of clarity showing the transport platform in its
operative position at its pickup location;
FIG. 3 is a side elevational view similar to that in FIG.
tween each of the deposit platform members 36 is such
pickup and transfer platform and the carriage assembly.
form the deposit platform 22. The transport platform
1 illustrating the pickup and transport platform at the 35 to provide sufficient support for normal items that are
purchased without falling through the spaces left there
checkout location with the packages illustrated in FIGS.
between, however, sufficient space is left between each of
1 and 2 at the deposit area having been transferred to the
the platform members 35 for the passage of the members
checkout location adjacent the discharge area; and,
of the pickup and transport platform 34 as will be de
FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken along the lines 4_4
of FIG, l and looking in the direction of the arrows illus 40 scribed in detail below.
The pickup and transport platform 34 is generally con-trating the relationship between the deposit platform mem
structed of a series of elongated transport platform mem
bers and the pickup and transport platform members with
ber 44. Ten (l0) members 44 are provided in the pres
the transport platform in its retracted position.
ent illustrative embodiment, arranged in rigid spaced par
FIG. 5 is an elevational view of a portion of the check
allel relationship such that the individual members 44
out counter shown in FIGS. 1 through 4 illustrating a Sec
may be placed between the individual members 36 which
ond embodiment of the actuating means to move the
members 44 are held in rigid parallel relationship with
FIG. 5 shows the pickup and transfer platform in its re
respect to each other by means of the cross braces 46
tracted or inoperative position;
FIG. 6 is an elevational View of the mechanisms seen 50 which are secured to each of the platform members 44 at
their downward extensions 44a. The upper surface 441;
in FIG. 5 in the raised or operative position;
of the transport platform members 44 provide a trans
FIG. 7 illustrates the mechanism shown in FIG. 5 when
port surface upon which packages P may be transported
the actuating means are utilized to move the pickup and
transfer platform from its operative to its inoperative
position; and,
FIG. 8 is a modified view of the device shown in FIG.
5 illustrating a further modification comprising the mount
ing means for the carriage means. In the modification
of FIG. 8, the carriage assembly is moved on a series
55
as will be described below.
The transport platform 34 is mounted upon a carriage
assembly, generally designated by the numeral 48, which
includes four (4) wheels 50 which are joined together for
rotation in rectangular orientation by means of the side
arms 52 ‘and the cross bars 54.
As may be seen in FIGS.
of rollers mounted along the length of the checkout 60 3 and 4, the carriage assembly 4S forms a rigid rectangu
counter rather than by the movement of rollers mounted
on the carriage which ride on tracks mounted on the
checkout counter as illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 7.
Referring now specifically to `the drawings, there is
shown in FIG. l a checkout counter generally designated
lar body including the side arms 52 and the cross mem
bers 54 with a wheel 50 mounted for easy rotation at eachV
by the numeral 10, which incorporates features and ad
vantages according to the present invention. The check
wardly of the wheels 5G. The guide links 56 are pivot
ally mounted at their other ends to the outer transport
corner thereof. The pickup and transport platform 34 is
secured to the carriage assembly 4S by the guide links 56
secured at one end to the cross bars 54 immediately in
platform members 44 yat the pivot points 58, which are
out counter 10 incorporates a frame 12 including side
spaced apart a distance equal to the spacing between the
walls 14, 16 and end walls 18, 20. In general, the coun
ter 10 includes a deposit area formed by the package-de 70 cross bars 52 such that the guide links 56 are oriented in
posit platform, designated by the numeral 22, at the right
parallel relationship. It will thus be appreciated that
hand end of the counter as seen in the drawings, and a
when the carriage assembly 48 is mounted upon the tracks
checkout location labelled by the numeral 24 at an inter
3f), 32, the pickup and transport platform 34 is adapted
for longitudinal movement along the length of the tracks
mediate point along the length of the counter. rIhe cus
tomer deposits his packages P in the usual manner on the 75 30, 32 and is further adapted for transverse movement
“3,066,766
.
.
5
`
with respect to the carriage assembly 48 by pivotal move
ment of the guide links S6. The guide links 56 and the
side arms 52 of the carriage assembly 48 provide a pair of
parallel four-bar linkages wherein the side arms 52 form
the stationary members and the guide links 56 and the
. ,
6
form 34. The cashie? pushes the platform 34 from the
lower to the upper end of the tracks 30, 32 by relatively
light pressure applied against the handle 60. This is an
easy operation since the platform is mounted for easy
longitudinal movement by the carriage 48. When the
pickup and transport platform 34 provide the -movable
platform 34 has reached the upper end of the tracts 30,
members.
32, at least one of the wheels 5t) engages the stop 3021
Actuating means are provided to effect the relative
thereprovided which is effective to halt the further longi
movement between the pickup and 4transfer platform 34
tudinal motion of the platform 34. Further pushing mo
and the carriage assembly 48. This actuating means in lO tion on the handle 6@ pivots the handle 60 about its pivot
cludes a handle 6i) having a lower portion 66a and an
point 62 which is effective to raise the transport platform
upper portion 60h at an angle thereto. The handle 66 is
34 from its retracted position to its raised or operative
pivotally mounted intermediate the ends of its lower por
position. it will 'be appreciated that the operative position
tion 60a at the pivot 62 on the transport platform member
of the transport platform 34 places the package-transport
44 which is situated closest to the side wall 16. Below
surfaces 44]; above the level of the package-support sur
the pivot 62 the lower portion 60a of the handle 6@ is effec
face 36a of the deposit members 36. This upward move
tive to engage a camming pin 64 which extends outwardly
ment of the transport platform 34 is effective to raise the
from the side arm 52 of the carriage assembly 48. It
individual packages P such that they are above the de
will be appreciated that when the upper' portion 6011 of
posit members 36 and will be supported solely by means
the handle 60 is rotated by the cashier grasping the knob
of the individual members 44 of the pickup and trans
6de and moving same upwardly, the handle 6i) will pivot
port platform 34, as shown in FIG. 2. The weight of
about the pivot point 62 such that the lower end of the ` the packages P combined with the weight of the platform
lower arm óila will engage the camming pin 64 thereby
34 is effective to move the transport platform 34 and the
producing a relative motion of the transport platform 34
packages P downwardly along the length of the inclined
with respect to the carriage assembly 4S. This move
tracks 39, 32. lf desired, this motion may be guided by
ment from a lowered retracted position, as illustrated in
the cashier by means of the handle 60. When the plat
FIG. l, to a raised loperative position as illustrated in
form 34 has moved downwardly from the position shown
FIG. 3 is shown at stage of its completion in FIG. 2
in FIG. 2 to that shown in PIG. 3, the first package P
wherein the handle 6b has been pivoted to its full rotation
engages against the cross member 26 which is placed at
about the pivot point 62 thus driving the carriage assem 30 the point most convenient for the cashier to examine the
bly 48 to the left with respect to the transport platform
individual package P and record same upon the cash
34. It will be appreciated that with this motion the guide
register, i.e. the checking location 24. The contact of
links 56 pivot about the points 58, 6i) and assume a posi
the first package P against the cross member 26 will pre-tion which is closer to the perpendicular with respect to
vent further downward movement of the transport plat
the individual platform members 44 thereby raising the
form 34. The cashier, after recording the price of the
level of the upper or transport surface 4411 of the transport
individual package P at the checking location 24, then
platform 34.
lifts, slides or rolls the package P over the cross member
The handle 6@ at the pivot 62 is provided with spring
26 and onto the top of the discharge platform 28. As
means (not shown) which is effective to bias the handle
each package P is removed from the transport platform
60 in the counter clcokwise direction such that it nor 40 34, the platform is free to move, under the influence of
mally engages a stop 66 which is secured to the end
gravity, down the inclined tracks 30, 32 until the next
transport platform member 44 thereby positioning the
package P is engaged against the cross member 26. This
handle 60 in its normal location as seen in FIGS. l and 3.
process is repeated until the cashier has tabulated each
When the cashier pivots the handle 6i) about its pivot
of the packages P at which time the transport platform
point 62, ‘the transport platform 34 is moved to the right
34 will be cleared of packages P which will all be con
with respect to the carriage assembly y48 thereby rotating
tained on the discharge platform 28. As may be best seen
the guide links 56 about the pivots 58, 60u After the
in FIG. 3, when the platform 34 is in its operative posi
links 56 have achieved a vertical orientation, the weight
tion, the package supporting surfaces 441'; are located
of the transport platform 34 will tend to further the rota
above the deposit platform members 36 and immediately
tion of the guide links 56 about the pivots 58, 6i). How
below the lower level lof the cross member 26 such that
ever, a stop 63 is provided on a platform member 44 to
no packages may be carried below the discharge- plat
engage one of the guide links 56 to halt the rotation just
form 28. Where extremely flat items are to be carried
beyond the perpendicular point. The weight of the trans
by the platform 34, individual fingers may be dependingly
port platform ‘34 will then be effected to maintain the
mounted on the cross member 26 to extend between the
relationship as defined by the stop 63. The handle 60,
transport platform members 44 and below the transport
when released by the cashier will, under the impetence of
surfaces 44h thereby to insure that all items contained on
its bias spring, be returned to the normal position as
the platform 34 will pass over and not under the cross
dictated by the stop 66. At either its operative or re
member 26.
tracted position, the platform 34 may be moved along the
When the pickup and transfer platform 34 moves to
tracks 30, 32 by relatively light pressure exerted on the 60 the lower end of the inclined tracks 30, 32, the wheels
handle 60.
To provide a more complete understanding of the in
vention as embodied in the checkout counter 10` dis
closed herein, a description of the sequence of operations
will now be given. With lthe checkout counter and the
various mechanisms thereof in the positions as indicated
in FIG. l, a customer may deposit his individual pack
ages P upon the deposit platform 22 provided by the
deposit platform members 44. The cashier, who is lo
cated at approximately the mid point of the checkout
counter 1t) then moves the packages P to the checkout
location 24 such that the cashier may individually see,
handle and tabulate each package as it is passed over
the checkout location 24. This movement of the pack
ages P is accomplished by the pickup and transfer plat
Sil engage the lower stop 30h as is seen in FIG. l. This
sudden halt of the carriage assembly 4S is effective to
cause the inertia of the :transport platform 34 to pivot
the guide links 56 about the pivot points 58, 60 and to
place the transport platform 34 in its lowered, inoperative
position. When each of the individual packages P have
been placed on the discharge platform 2S, the cashier
or her assistant may bag the packages P‘ in the manner
well known in self-service retailing.
While the above process is being carried out the next
customer may place his packages, labelled in FIG. 3
as Pl, on the deposit platform 22. Since the first cus
tomer’s packages P have been bodily moved as a unit
from the deposit platform 22 by means of the transfer
platform 34, that ñrst area is free for use by the next
3,088,760
customer.
When each of `the ñrst customer’s packages
P have been checked out by the cashier at the checking
location, and the pickup and transfer platform 34 has
assumed its retracted position, the cashier returns the
transfer platform 34 to the upper end of the inclined
side arms 252 pivotally connected to the guide links 256
at the pivot 256a, the opposite side arms being intercon
nected by cross members (not shown) similar to the cross
members shown in FIG. 4. The carriage 248 rides along
the length of the checkout counter 210 on a series of
tracks 31), 32 by pushing against the handle 60. When
the carriage assembly 48 has moved to its limit point
individual rollers 291) which are carried by inclined roller
mounts 292 at an angle to the horizontal. The roller
as defined by the stop 30a, the cashier continues to move
the handle 69 such that it pivots about its pivot point 62
thereby raising the level of the transport platform 34
mounts 292 are inclined at substantially the same angle
as the tracks 30, 32 >shown in FIGS. l through 4. The
side arms 252l are supported by, and ride on top of the
rollers 290. Thus, the carriage means in checkout counter
21d provides the same function as the carriage means in
which is effective, as described in detail above, to lift
the package P1 off of the deposit platform 22 and onto
the transport platform 34. The packages P1 as carried
by the platform 34 are then moved downwardly towards
the checkout location 24 and the process as described
above is repeated.
In the second embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 5, 6
and 7, which offers an alternative construction for the
actuating means, similar parts to those shown in FiGS. l
through 4 will be indicated by similar numerals in the 20
counter 10, the only difference being, the physical place
ment of the respective rollers.
It should be appreciated that various other alternative
structures `may be employed t0 achieve similar results to
those produced by the checkout counter 10. For example,
it is possible to utilize a different means than the inclined
100 series. Thus, the pickup and transfer platform 134,
having individual members 144, is pivotally mounted `at
pivots 158 to the guide links 156 «of the carriage 148. At
the lower ends of the guide links 15d and at the ends of
tracks Sill, 32 to impart a bias to the transport platform
34 for movement in the direction of the checkout location
24. Spring means may be operatively secured to the car
riage assembly 48 to produce the requisite bias to the trans
port platform or any one of a large number of other
well known bias producing means may be employed.
port Vplatform 134 on the inclined tracks 130.
The actuating means includes a handle 169 pivotally
out counter of relatively simple design wherein the force
of gravity is utilized in an advantageous fashion to trans
the pickup and transfer platform 134 is in its retracted
to transport the packages in buik towards `a checkout lo
cation where the individual items are recorded on a cash
From the foregoing it wili be appreciated there is pro
the side -arms 152 of the carriage 148 are mounted the 25
vided in accordance with the present invention a check
wheels 150 which support the carriage 148 and the trans
port packages along .the length of a self-service, retail
mounted at 162 to the end member
of the platform
134. At the lower end of the handle ldd there is a 30 outlet checkout counter. Customers merely place their
packages at a deposit area at one end of the checkout
first extension 18@ which coacts with a pin 164i- rigidly
counter and a simple movement by the cashier is effective
secured -to and projecting from the side arm 152. When
position, as shown in FIG. 5, and the handle 16u is piv
oted about the point 162, the i‘irst handle extension igt? 35 register. As each individual item is checked, the force
of gravity is effective to move the remaining packages
hits the pin 164 moving it to the left (as viewed in FIG.
towards the checkout location such that the cashier need
5) thereby forcing the guide links 156 to rotate about
only concern herself with packages located at one par
the pivots 15S to reach the relative position shown in
ticular point of operation. As the individual packages
FIG. 6 wherein the platform 13d is in its raised or opera
tive position. At this point the guide links 156 are en 40 are tabulated by the cashier, they are placed upon a dis
charge platform where the packages are placed in suitable
gaged with the stops 168 to hold the platform 134 in
bags or containers as is the normal practice. While the
position.
packages of one customer are being tabulated at the
The construction of this second embodiment of the ac
checking location, the next customer may place his pack
tivating means is such as to allow the cashier to easily
ages on the deposit area which has been cleared by the
move the platform 134 from its operative to its inopera
vbulk movement of `the packages of the first customer.
tive posi-tion, even in cases where the platform has not
made its full travel. This is accomplished by the pro
vision of the second handle extension 182 and the spring
and piston stop 184. When the handle 16€) is not being
used it assumes a normal position governed by the stop
184 similar, in this function, to the stop 66 illustrated in
FIGS. l through 4. However, stop 184 provides for an
overriding of the normal position of the handle 166.
The stop 184 includes a piston and rod 186 and a coil
spring 188 biasing the piston and rod downwardly and to »
the left as seen in the drawings. This construction al
lows the handle to move past the normal position of
the stop 184 when force is exerted to drive the handle
160 in a counter-clockwise direction.
When it is desired to lower the platform y134 to its 60
retracted position, the cashier presses down on the handle
160, compressing the spring 18S as seen in FIG. 7. This
motion moves the second extension 182 of the handle 161)
through a complementary movement. The extension 182 is
placed such that it is immediately adjacent the pin 164
when the platform 134 is in its operative position and
the handle is in its normal position. This movement of
The pickup and transport platform provided according
to the present invention is simply moved by the cashier
towards the pickup location where the movement of an
actuating lever is effective to raise the next customer’s
packages onto the transport platform.
The weight of
gravity is then effective to move the platform and its con
tained pacakges towards and up to the checkout loca
tion for tabulation by the cashier. The checkout counter
according to the present invention provides inexpensive
and easy to operate mechanisms which effectively aid the
cashier in moving and tabulating the individual customer
selected packages associ-ated with self-service retailing.
A latitude of modification, change and substitution is
intended `in the foregoing disclosure and in some instances
some features of the invention will be employed without
a corresponding use of other features. Accordingly, it
is appropriate that the appended claims be construed
`broadly and in a manner consistent with the spirit and
scope of the invention herein.
What we claim is:
l. A checkout counter for advancing packages from
arm 152 and the guide links past dead center such that
a package-deposit location at one end of said checkout
counter to a package-checkout location intermediate the
tion.
This motion `is illustrated by the directional ar
stationary package-deposit platform extending from said
rows in FIG. 7.
In FIG. 8, a further alternative structure is shown with
tion and including a plurality of spaced apart elongated
the handle extension 182 is sufficient to move the side
the platform 134 falls to its retracted, inoperative posi 70 ends of said counter comprising a frame, an elongated
end of said checkout counter toward said checkout loca
deposit platform members having upper surfaces provid
similar parts being labeled by similar numerais in the 200
series. The carriage assembly 248 simply consists of the 75 ing a package-deposit surface, a stop member disposed
‘accenno
transversely of said frame adjacent said platform mem
bers at said checkout location, a package-pickup and
transport platform adapted to lift packages off said pack
age-deposit platform and to advance the same toward and
into contact with said stop member, said pickup and
l@
tionary package-deposit platform to receive successive
packages after checkout.
3. A checkout counter for advancing packages from
a package~deposit location to a package-checkout loca
tion, comprising a frame, an elongated stationary package
deposit platform mounted on said frame including a plu
rality of spaced apart elongated deposit platform mem
faces providing a package transport surface, said trans
bers having upper surfaces providing a package-deposit
port platform members being adapted to ñt between said
surface, a stop member defining said checkout location
deposit platform members, carriage means including co l0 disposed transversely of said frame adjacent one end of
operating rollers and tracks mounting said transport plat
said deposit platform members, a package-pickup and
form for movement within said checkout counter from
transport platform adapted to lift packages off said pack
transport platform including a plurality of spaced apart
elongated transport platform' members having upper sur
a package-pickup location at said one end of said checkout
counter toward said package-checkout location at said
stop member, means operatively connected to and mount
ing said transport platform on said carriage means for
movement of said transport surface from a retracted posi
age-deposit platform and to'advance the same toward
and into contact with said stop member said pickup and
transport platform including a plurality of spaced apart
elongated transport platform members having upper sur
faces providing a package-transport surface, said trans
tion below the package-deposit surface of said package
port platform members being adapted to fit between said
deposit platform to an operative position above the pack
deposit platform members, carriage means mounting said
age deposit surface of said package deposit platform when 20 transport platform for movement from a package-pickup
said transport platform is in said pickup location such
location at said package-deposit location on said package
that packages may be lifted off said package-deposit plat
deposit platform toward a package-discharge location at
form onto said pickup and transport platform, actuating
said stop member, means operatively connected to and
means operatively connected to said package and pickup
mounting said transport platform on said carriage means
platform to effect said movement between said retracted
and said operative position, said carriage means being
eñective to advance said pickup and transport platform
and said contained packages relative to said stationary
package-deposit platform incident to the checkout of
packages at said checkout location, and a discharge plat 30
form mounted on said frame adjacent said checkout loca
tion and extending away from said stationary package
deposit platform and being adapted to receive packages
after checkout.
2. A checkout counter for advancing packages from
for movement of said transport surface from a retracted
position below the package~deposit surface of said pack
age-deposit platform to an operative position above the
package-deposit surface of said package-deposit platform
when said transport platform is in said pickup location
such that packages may be lifted off said package-deposit
platform onto said pickup and transport platform', actuat
ing means operatively connected to said package and
pickup platform to effect said movement between said
retracted and said operative position, and bias means in
said checkout counter being effective to bias said carriage
means such that said pickup and transport platform is
biased for movement away from said pickup location to
ward said discharge location, said carriage means being
stationary package-deposit platform mounted on said
effective to progressively advance said pickup and trans
frame and extending from said one end of said checkout 40 port platform and said contained packages, under the
counter toward said checkout location and including a
inliuence of said bias means, relative to said stationary
a package-deposit location at one end of said checkout
counter to a package-checkout location intermediate the
ends of said counter comprising a frame, an elongated
plurality of spaced apart elongated deposit platform mem
bers having upper surfaces providing a package-deposit
surface, a stop member disposed transversely of said frame
adjacent said checkout location, a package-pickup and
transport platform adapted to lift packages off said pack
age-deposit platform and to advance the same toward
and into contact with said stop member and including a
plurality of spaced apart elongated transport platform
package-deposit platform incident to the checkout of pack
ages at said checkout location.
4. A checkout counter for advancing packages under
the influence of gravity from a package-deposit location
to a package-checkout location comprising a frame, an
elongated stationary package-deposit platform down
wardly inclined relative to the horizontal from an upper
end to a lower end and including a plurality of spaced
members having upper surfaces providing a package 50 apart elongated deposit platform members having ‘upper
surfaces providing a package-deposit surface, a Stop
member disposed transversely of said frame adjacent
carriage means including cooperating rollers and tracks
said lower end of said platform members defining said
mounting said transport platform for movement from a
checkout location, a package-pickup and transport plat
package-pickup location at one end of said package-de 55 form adapted to lift packages off said package-deposit
posit platform toward a package-discharge location adja
platform and to advance the same under the influence of
transport surface, said transport platform members being
adapted to fit between said deposit platform members,
cent said stop member, means operatively connected to
and mounting said transport platform on said carriage
gravity toward and into contact with said stop member
and including a plurality of spaced apart elongated trans
means for movement of said transport surface from a re
port platform members having upper surfaces providing
tracted position below the package-deposit surface of said 60 a packagetransport surface, said transport platform
package-deposit platform to an operative position above
members being adapted to fit between said deposit plat
the package-deposit surface of said package-deposit plat
form members, carriage means including cooperating
form when said transport platform is in said pickup loca
rollers and inclined tracks mounting said transport plat
tion such that packages may be lifted off said package
form for movement within said checkout counter under
deposit platform onto said pickup and transport platform 65 the influence of gravity from a package-pickup location
actuating means operatively connected to said package
at said package~deposit location toward said package
checkout location at said stop member, means opera
and pickup platform to effect said movement between
tively connected to and mounting said transport surface
said retracted and said operative position, said carriage
for movement from a retracted position below the pack
means being effective to progressively advance said pickup
and transport platform and said contained packages, under 70 age-deposit surface of said package-deposit platform to
an operative position above the package~deposit surface
the influence of gravity, relative to said stationary pack
of said package-deposit platform when said transport plat
age-deposit platform incident to the checkout of packages
form is in said pickup location such that packages may
at said checkout location, and a discharge platform ex
be lifted off said package-deposit platform onto said
tending away from said stop member and from said sta 75 pickup „and transport platform, actuating means opera
3,066,760
1l
tively connected to said package and pickup platform to
effect said movement between said retracted and said
operative position, said carriage means being effective to
progressively advance said pickup and transport plat
form and said contained packages, under the influence
of gravity, relative to said stationary package-deposit
platform incident to the checkout of packages at said
checkout location, and a discharge platform mounted
on said frame adjacent said stop member and extending
away from said stationary package-deposit platform being
adapted to receive successive packages after checkout.
5. A checkout counter for advancing packages under
lthe influence of gravity from a package-deposit location
at one end of said checkout counter to the cashier at a
package-checkout location at an intermediate point on
said counter- comprising a frame, an elongated stationary
package-deposit platform mounted on said frame and
ldownwardly inclined relative to the horizontal from an
upper end to a lower end and including a plurality of
platform and to advance the same under the influence
of gravity toward and into contact with said stop member
said pickup and transport platform including a plurality
of spaced apart elongated transport platform members
having upper surfaces providing a package-transport sur
face, said transport platform members being adapted to
fit between said deposit platform members, carriage
means including cooperating rollers and inclined tracks
secured to said frame supporting said transport platform
for movement under the influence of gravity from a
package-pickup location adjacent said upper end of said
package-deposit platform toward a package-discharge
location adjacent said stop member, means operatively
connected to and mounting said transport platform on
said carriage means for movement of said pickup and
transport platform from `a retracted position below the
package-deposit surface of said package-deposit platform
to an operative position above the package-deposit sur
platform adapted to lift packages olf said package-deposit
face of said package-deposit platform when said transport
platform is in said pickup location such that packages
may be lifted off said package-deposit platform onto said
pickup and transport platform, actauting means including
a handle operatively interconnecting said package and
pickup platform and said carriage means to effect said
25 movement between said retracted and said operative posi
platform and to advance the same under the influence
'of gravity toward and into contact with said stop member
said pickup ,and transport platform including a plurality
said handle by the cashier, said carriage means being
effective to advance said pickup and transport platform
spaced apart elongated deposit platform members having
upper surfaces providing a package-deposit surface, a
lstop member defining saidvcheckout location disposed
transversely of said frame adjacent said lower end of
said platform members, a package-pickup and transport
of spaced apart elongated transport platform members
having upper surfaces providing a package-transport sur
face, said transport platform members being adapted to
fit between said deposit platform members, carriage
means including cooperating rollers and inclined tracks
secured to said frame supporting said transport platform
for movement under the influence of gravity from a pack
age-pickup location adjacent said upper end of said pack
age-deposit platform toward a package-discharge loca
tion adjacent said stop member, means operatively con
nected to and mounting said transport platform on said
carriage means for movement of said pickup and trans
port platform from a retracted position below the pack
age-deposit surface of said package-deposit platform to
an operative position above the package-deposit surface
of said package-deposit platform when said transport
platform is in said pickup location such that packages
may be lifted olf said package-deposit platform onto said
pickup and transport platform and actuating means in
cluding a handle operatively interconnecting said package
and pickup platform and said carriage means to effect
said movement between said retracted and said operative
position at said pickup location in response to movement
of said handle by the cashier, said carriage means being
effective to advance said pickup and transport platform
and said contained packages, under the influence of grav
ity, relative to said stationary package deposit platform
tion at said pickup location in response to movement of
and said contained packages, under the influence of
gravity, relative to said stationary package-deposit plat
form towards said checkout location at said stop, said
pickup and transport platform halting when one of said
packages engages said stop, said pickup and transport
`platform and said contained packages continuing further
progressive advancement towards said pickup location at
said stop as individual packages are checked out, and a
discharge platform extending away from said stop member
and from said stationary package-deposit platform to
receive successive packages after checkout.
7. ln a checkout counter for advancing packages from
a deposit location at one end of said counter to the
cashier at a checkout location at an intermediate point
along said counter, a deposit platform at said deposit
location, a transfer platform, said deposit platform and
said transfer platform including a plurality of spaced
apart members, said members of said transfer platform
being positioned to ñt between the spaced apart members
of said deposit platform, means mounting said transport
platform for vertical movement with respect to said
deposit platform, tracks mounted longitudinally on said
checkout counter inclined to the horizontal, roller means
mounting said platform on said tracks for movement along
said counter between said deposit location and said check
out location, said roller means and said tracks being effec
tive to bias said platform by the influence of gravity for
movement toward said checkout location, means provid
ing a discharge platform adapted to receive packages
after having been checked out at said checking location,
towards said checkout location at said stop, said pickup
and transport platform halting when one of said pack
ages engages said stop, said pickup and transport piat
and manually operable return means to effect the return
form and said contained packages continuing further
progressive advancement towards said pickup location 60 of said platform against the force of gravity to said
deposit location to receive further packages.
at said stop as individual packages are checked out.
8. in a checkout counter for advancing packages from
6. A checkout counter for advancing packages under
a deposit location at one end of said counter to the
the influence of gravity from a package-deposit location
at one end of said checkout counter to the cashier at a
cashier at a checkout location at an intermediate point
package-checkout location at an intermediate point on
said counter comprising a frame, an elongated stationary
along said counter, a deposit platform at said deposit
location, a transfer platform, said deposit platform and
said transfer platform including a plurality of spaced
apart members, said members of said transfer platform
being positioned to fit between the spaced apart mem
bers of said deposit platform, means mounting said
transport platform for vertical movement with respect
to said deposit platform, roller means mounting said
package-deposit platform mounted on said frame and
downwardly inclined relative to the horizontal from an
upper end to a lower end and including a plurality of
spaced apart elongated deposit platform members having
upper surfaces providing a package-deposit surface, a
stop member defining said checkout location disposed
transversely of said frame adjacent said lower end of
transfer platform at an angle to the horizontal on said
counter for movement between said deposit location and
said platform members, package-pickup and transport
platform adapted to lift packages off said package-deposit 75 said checkout location, said roller means being effective
3,066,760
13
to bias said transfer platform by the influence of gravity
for movement toward said checkout location, means
providing a discharge platfcrm adapted to receive pack
ages after having been checked out at said checking
location, and manually operable return means to effect
the return of said transfer platform against the force of
gravity to said deposit location to receive further packages.
9. A checkout counter for advancing packages from
a package-deposit location at one end of said checkout
counter to a package-checkout location intermediate the
ends of said counter comprising a frame, an elongated
stationary package-deposit platform extending from said
end of said checkout counter toward said checkout loca
\
14
10. A checkout counter for advancing packages from
a package-deposit location at one end of said checkout
counter to a package-checkout location intermediate the
ends of said counter comprising a frame, an elongated
stationary package-deposit platform extending from said
end of said checkout counter toward said checkout loca
tion and including a plurality of spaced. apart elongated
deposit platform members having upper surfaces pro
viding a package-deposit surface, a stop member disposed
transversely of said frame adjacent said platform mem
bers at said checkout location, a package-pickup and
transport platform adapted to lift packages off said
package-deposit platform and to advance the same toward
and into Contact with said stop member, said pickup and
tion and including a plurality of spaced apart elongated
deposit platform members having upper surfaces provid 15 transport platform including a plurality of spaced apart
ing a package-deposit surface, a stop member disposed
elongated transport platform members having upper sur
transversely of said frame adjacent said platform mem
faces providing a package transport surface, said trans
bers at said checkout location, a package-pickup and
transport platform adapted to lift packages off said pack
port platform members being adapted to fit between said
deposit platform members, carriage means including
age-deposit platform and to advance the same toward 20 cooperating rollers and tracks mounting said transport
and into contact with said stop member, said pickup and
platform for movement within said checkout counter
transport platform including a plurality of spaced apart
from a package-pickup location at said one end of said
elongated transport platform members having upper sur
checkout counter toward said package-checkout location
faces providing a package transport surface, said transport
at said stop member, means operatively connected to and
platform members being adapted to fit between said 25 mounting said transport platform on said carriage means
deposit platform members, carriage means including
for movement of said transport surface from a retracted
cooperating rollers and tracks mounting said transport
position below the package-deposit surface of said pack
platform for movement within said checkout counter
age-deposit platform to an operative position above the
from a package-pickup location at said one end of said
package-deposit surface of said package-deposit platform
checkout counter toward said package-checkout location 30 when said transport platform is in said pick-up location
at said stop member, means operatively connected to
such that packages may be lifted oíf said package-deposit
and mounting said transport platform on said carriage
platform onto said pickup and transport platform, actu
ating means operatively connected to said package and
retracted position below the package-deposit surface of
pickup platform comprising a handle connected to said
said package-deposit platform to an operative position 35 pickup platform and said carriage means to move said
above the package deposit surface of said package deposit
platform from its retracted to its operative position and
platform when said transport platform is in said pickup
from its operative to its retracted position, said carriage
location such that packages may be lifted off said
means being effective to advance said pickup and trans
package-deposit platform onto said pickup and transport
port platform and said contained packages relative to
platform, actuating means operatively connected to said 40 said stationary package-deposit platform incident to the
package and pickup platform comprising a pivotally
checkout of packages at said checkout location, and a
mounted handle including cam means to produce relative
discharge platform mounted on said frame adjacent said
motion between said transfer platform and said carriage
checkout location and extending away from said stationary
means to move said platform from its retracted to its
package-deposit platform and being adapted to receive
operative position and from its operative to its retracted 45 packages after checkout.
position, said carriage means being effective to advance
said pickup and transport platform and said contained
References Cited in the ñle of this patent
packages relative to said stationary package-deposit plat
UNITED STATES PATENTS
form incident to the checkout of packages at said check
means for movement of said transport surface from a
'A
out location, and a discharge platform mounted on said 50
frame adjacent said checkout location and extending
away from said stationary package-deposit platform and
being adapted to receive packages after checkout.
1,288,175
2,317,438
Pittman ____________ __ Dec. 17, 1918
2,626,682
Just ________________ __ Ian. 27, 1953
Berry ______________ __ Feb. 16, 1954
2,669,343
Bradley ____________ _- Apr. 27, 1943
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