Patents Examined by Cheryl L. Gastineau
  • Patent number: 5499709
    Abstract: A roller conveyor for aligning and separating material placed on the conveyor comprises a frame having side walls connected by crossmembers and a plurality of rollers mounted between the side walls. The frame further comprises a pair of supplemental side walls disposed between the parallel side walls to define an opening in which is disposed an aligner/separator assembly. The aligner/separator assembly comprises two frame mounted counter-rotating rollers driven by a motor. The counter-rotating rollers extend at a predetermined angle above the plane of the conveyor. The counter-rotating rollers rotate in the direction of the corresponding side wall and any unit contacting one of the rollers is laterally translated in the direction of the corresponding side wall. The counter-rotating rollers serve to separate adjacent units and to align the units with respect to the counter-rotating rollers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 1994
    Date of Patent: March 19, 1996
    Assignee: Alvey, Inc.
    Inventor: Richard L. Easton
  • Patent number: 5454466
    Abstract: An accumulating conveyor of the walking beam type is presented in which a walking shuttle mechanism selectively lifts articles from a stationary portion of a conveyor only when downstream positions of the stationary portion of the conveyor are free to receive them. Sensors at each holding station along the shuttle mechanism are used to detect the absence or presence of an article at each holding station to supply a detection signal to the conveyor controller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 1993
    Date of Patent: October 3, 1995
    Assignee: Visi-Trol Engineering Company
    Inventor: Lawrence A. Galarowic
  • Patent number: 5435430
    Abstract: There is utilized a particular bucket conveyor apparatus for the transport of fragile articles such as cookies and crackers from an input feed point to a multiple number of discharge areas. At the discharge areas the bucket conveyors are tilted rearwardly to spread the fragile crackers and cookies over a lower transverse belt or vibrating conveyor. In the operation of the apparatus each of the buckets is filled initially to less than about 50 percent of its volume. In this way if there is not an available discharge point, the bucket can once again go through the cycle before it would reach a point of overflowing. When the buckets are in a full condition, they will empty half or more of their contents onto a storage station conveyor prior to passing the input feed point. This bucket conveyor mechanism lends itself to a high degree of computerized control.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 25, 1995
    Assignee: Nabisco, Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph Steiner, Michael A. Carter, Robert E. Strom
  • Patent number: 5431387
    Abstract: A reciprocating table has a cam follower in the nature of an elongate slot extending transversely of the reciprocating path of the table. This slot receives a cam which is eccentrically mounted on a cam support wheel. The angular position of the cam support wheel is monitored by a rotary encoder and the cam wheel is driven by a bi-directional motor under microprocessor control. The microprocessor controls the motion of the cam such that an angular quadrant centred about the position of the cam defining the most extended position of the table is not used since the table is relatively insensitive to the motion of the cam within this quadrant. In contrast, the opposite quadrant extending about the most retracted position of the table is utilized so that the cam may be moved quickly to retract the table and yet the table is naturally decelerated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 11, 1995
    Assignee: Longford Equipment International Limited
    Inventors: Rudy E. Loben, John A. Long
  • Patent number: 5431271
    Abstract: An electronic indicator device 24 is disposed on the outer deck profile 20 of a passenger conveying device 10. The indicator device 24 includes a display 52 capable of displaying a symbol indicative of direction of operation and stopped operation of the passenger conveying device 10. The indicator device 24 comprises a post 30 attached at a lower end thereof to the outer deck 20 and having a display housing 42 attached at angle at an upper end of post 30. The electronic display 52 is disposed in the display housing 42. A base 26 is disposed on the outer deck 20 with the post 30 passing through an opening in the base 26. A transparent enclosure 44 having upper and lower openings is disposed over the base 26, the post 30 and the display housing 42, with the display 52 disposed within the upper opening of the enclosure 44.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 11, 1995
    Assignee: Otis Elevator Company
    Inventors: Detlev Abraham, Dietmar Krueger
  • Patent number: 5429224
    Abstract: A parts-conveying apparatus comprising an elongated guide member having a guide channel extending throughout the entire length of the guide member for supporting parts therein; and an endless belt unit comprising a pair of rollers and an endless belt wrapped around the rollers, one of the rollers being operatively connected to a drive source, the endless belt having one substantially rectilinear part extending alongside of the guide channel substantially over its entire length in order to feed the parts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 4, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 4, 1995
    Assignee: YKK Corporation
    Inventor: Masao Kubo
  • Patent number: 5427224
    Abstract: An apparatus for conveying and aligning various types of film packages recovered for recycling. A conveyer of the apparatus is constructed by a pair of parallel belts combined to form a V-shaped bearing gutter and driven in the same conveying direction. The film packages are conveyed on the conveyer and are slid downward through an inclined cylindrical tube which rotates about the longitudinal axis and has spiral ridges on the inner periphery. Thereby, the longitudinal direction of the film packages are aligned with the conveying direction. Then a posture discriminator discriminates between the upright posture and the upside-down posture of the film packages on a first conveying path, based on the position of the viewfinder. The film packages having the upright posture are caused to fall headlong from the first conveying path onto a second conveying path, so as to have the upside-down posture on the second conveying path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 1993
    Date of Patent: June 27, 1995
    Assignee: Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kazuyoshi Suehara, Toshihiro Matsushita, Masahi Saitoh, Toshiyuki Ogura
  • Patent number: 5425459
    Abstract: A stone separation table (30,70) selectively separates and drops stones, clods, and dirt (27) between selected rollers while conveying potatoes (33) or other root crops from one side of the table to the other. The stone separation table incorporates sets of rollers (32,72) including separating (36,76) and spacing (40,80) rollers of substantially the same diameter. The sets of rollers are coplanar forming a planar conveying level (45,75) with all rollers driven in the same direction of rotation. The separating roller (36,76) is constructed with projecting elements, either projecting fingers (38) of a star roller (36) or bristles (78) of a brush roller (76) for receiving stones, clods, and dirt (27) for rotation downward and dropping in the separating passageway (42,82) between the separating roller (36,76) and spacer roller (40,80).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 6, 1993
    Date of Patent: June 20, 1995
    Inventors: Malcolm P. Ellis, Jaye A. Ellis
  • Patent number: 5425440
    Abstract: A device for continuous conveying and turning of workpieces has a drivable, endless, flexible troughed belt (12) with a plurality of bars, parallel in the direction of conveyance (F) and articulated to each other. In order to form the trough, each of the ends of the troughed belt is guided around a ring (14) or a circular disk 13 parallel to a reference plane (S.sub.6 .beta.), respectively, as well as two guide rollers (10, 10', 11, 11') which are paraxial to the circular disk and the ring. For disturbance-free conveyance of large and small workpieces, the reference plane (S.sub.6 .beta.) forms a line of intersection (S.sub.6), inclined (angle .alpha.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 28, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 20, 1995
    Inventor: Werner Hunziker
  • Patent number: 5423416
    Abstract: A spiral overlay having multiple variations, but generically, comprised of wire spirals intermeshed together by connecting rods extending across the conveyor in the transverse direction. Broadly, a first overlay is made up of spirals which may be tapered and afford pitch control by incorporating elongated loops in the spirals to limit the movement of the rods therein. The elongated loops also provide for collapsibility of the spirals relative to one another. A second overlay is made of integral or modular spirals such that the overlay includes upstanding spiral elements on its conveying surface to provide traction and separation of the articles being conveyed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 1993
    Date of Patent: June 13, 1995
    Assignee: Ashworth Brothers, Inc.
    Inventor: John G. Kucharski
  • Patent number: 5423415
    Abstract: A rope pump for conveying fluid-like material from a reservoir to a select location includes an endless rope, pulleys for forming the endless rope into a loop extending between the reservoir and the select location and an improved drive for driving the endless rope about the pulleys. The improved drive includes first and second sheaves each having a plurality of circumferencial grooves and an axis of rotation. The first and second sheaves are mounted to shafts for rotation about their respective axes of rotation. The sheaves are radially spaced with the grooves of the first sheave aligned with the grooves of the second sheave and the respective axes of rotation being in parallel. A motor is provided in operative association with one of the first and second sheaves for rotating the sheave about its axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 1993
    Date of Patent: June 13, 1995
    Assignee: Red Top Pump Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Mark S. Williams
  • Patent number: 5423413
    Abstract: An extendable conveyor unit supports the extendable units directly from the warehouse floor with a minimum amount of support structure. The extendable conveyor includes one or more extendable units, a stationary support for supporting the extendable units, and a conveying surface defined on an extended portion of the extendable units. The stationary support supports the extendable units between a fully extended position, wherein the extendable units extend from the support in the direction of the vehicle to be loaded and a fully retracted position in which the extendable units extend from the support in a direction opposite from the direction of the vehicle to be loaded. The conveying surface may be a gravity roller conveyor or it may be an endless belt. When the conveying surface is an endless belt, an elevating unit may be provided with the stationary support in order to elevate the conveying member above the extendable unit at the stationary support to match up with a discharge or receiving conveyor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 1, 1993
    Date of Patent: June 13, 1995
    Assignee: Rapistan Demag Corporation
    Inventor: Phillip J. Gilmore
  • Patent number: 5421451
    Abstract: A conveyor comprises parallel side frames provided with a plurality of apertures and C-shaped cross members provided with apertures in the side walls disposed in juxtaposition to apertures in the side frames. The cross member apertures are each defined by a flat inner wall. The cross members are fastened to the side frames by hook-bolts having a hook portion extending through the side wall apertures and a shaft extending to a juxtaposed aperture in the side frame and provided with a nut and washer to secure the bolt in the side frame. The hook portion of the bolt is provided with a flat surface extending a substantial distance across the inner surface of the hook portion of the bolt to provide a load bearing contact area with the inner wall of the side member aperture. The cross members have tabs extending outwardly from each end which are inserted into complementary apertures in the side frames. The resulting bolted conveyor frame construction ensures frame alignment under heavy loads.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 6, 1995
    Assignee: Alvey, Inc.
    Inventor: Richard L. Easton
  • Patent number: 5421450
    Abstract: The present invention provides a heat-resistant, laminated conveyer belt comprising a reinforcing layer obtained by impregnating fluoroplastic into a heat-resistant fiber base cloth, drying and sintering the base cloth and a wear-resistant layer, formed on the reinforcing layer, obtained by impregnating fluoroplastic into a base cloth formed by weaving heat-resistant fiber in the form of a knit weave, drying and sintering the base cloth, and its manufacturing method.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 6, 1995
    Assignee: Chukoh Chemical Industries, Ltd.
    Inventors: Sumio Kitagawa, Masanori Ishibashi, Tomomi Haraguchi, Yoshiro Nogami
  • Patent number: 5419428
    Abstract: A plastic conveyor belt formed of a large number of plastic belt modules includes outer belt modules having integral sideplates. The sideplates are of heavier material and higher strength, for withstanding stress around the outside of curves and for withstanding edge wear in certain types of conveyor systems. In a preferred embodiment, each sideplate has a depending guide member which may include a hold down tab. In one embodiment, plastic connecting rods which serially connect belt modules are discontinuous in length, made up of several coaxial pieces which are held in place by press fitting at the outer ends. This enables the rod to be of high shear strength in areas of high pulling force, e.g. at the outside of a radius conveyor belt in a curve, but of lower strength extruded construction elsewhere.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 1994
    Date of Patent: May 30, 1995
    Inventors: Karl V. Palmaer, Eric K. Palmaer
  • Patent number: 5418732
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for targeting a robotics materials handling and sequencing system having a plurality of storage bins. A targeting cassette is inserted into one or more of the stationary storage bins and a laser scanner is utilized to read an identification code on the targeting cassette. Based upon the reading of the laser scanner, the position of the targeting cassette is calculated. Additional storage locations can be calculated either by targeting the location or using an interpolation method to calculate the location of the remaining storage bins.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 1992
    Date of Patent: May 23, 1995
    Assignee: Odetics, Inc.
    Inventor: Phillip G. McFadin
  • Patent number: 5415270
    Abstract: A transporting device for mass articles, in particular package covers for use in drying surfaces for drying and/or jelling of varnished or coated surface, the transporting device comprises two endless rotating transporting elements extending parallel and opposite to one another so that mass articles can be guided between the transporting elements from a supply station to a withdrawal station, the transporting elements being formed as corrugated hoses with parallel corrugations having substantially straight flanks for forming receiving grooves, and tubular and laterally open guides guide the corrugated hoses.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 3, 1994
    Date of Patent: May 16, 1995
    Assignee: Selas S.A.
    Inventor: Dietmar Raupach
  • Patent number: 5415387
    Abstract: In a sheet feed device for image forming equipment, a sheet feed section and a register section are each provided an exclusive drive arrangement. The sheet feed section starts feeding a sheet toward the register section in response to a feed start signal generated in an image forming section. The time for causing the sheet feed section to stop feeding a sheet or the time for causing the register section to start driving the sheet is delayed in matching relation to a print speed. As a result, the sheet feed section provides a sheet with a sufficient slack while the register section brings the sheet into accurate register with an image and can change the position of an image on the sheet in the top-and-bottom direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 1994
    Date of Patent: May 16, 1995
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventor: Kazuyuki Suzuki
  • Patent number: 5415267
    Abstract: An article orienting method and apparatus to effectively orient articles fed in random fashion into substantially uniformly oriented condition. The apparatus includes a vertical passage, into which the articles are put in desired order. Upwardly directed fluid flow is generated in the vertical passage, which fluid flow acts on the article within the passage to maintain the article in the floating condition with capability of free rotation. By the effect of the fluid flow, the articles put in random attitude adjusted and oriented in a uniform direction. After completion of orientation, the fluid flow is terminated for removing the oriented articles in oriented condition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 3, 1994
    Date of Patent: May 16, 1995
    Assignees: KAO Corporation, Shibuya Kogyo Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Atsushi Sato, Takao Ishikawa, Shinichi Endo, Toshiyuki Ohmori, Yasuaki Kotani
  • Patent number: 5415318
    Abstract: A staple feed system utilizing an inclined staple feed ramp for axial loading of staples into a staple gun under the influence of gravity. The inclined feed ramp includes an inclined upper linear portion, an upwardly curving arcuate central portion, and a horizontal lower portion permitting the continuous feed of staples beneath the actuation mechanism of the staple gun while the staple gun is disposed in a generally horizontal position. The angulated feed system may be utilized with staple racks comprising multiple staples adhered one to the other. The arcuate ramp is sized to permit the smooth movement of staples thereon, allowing the transfer of gravitational force to the staples contiguous the actuation mechanism for the uninterrupted feeding of staples thereto.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 1993
    Date of Patent: May 16, 1995
    Inventor: Marlan M. Lewis