Patents Examined by Joseph J. Rolla
  • Patent number: 5368208
    Abstract: A sealing apparatus for shielding air from a path of molten steel in a laddle to a tundish in continuous metal casting facilities to prevent oxidation of the molten metal, the apparatus including a seal box lift mechanism mounted on a tundish body through a bracket and including a drive member and a lift rod member to be vertically moved up and down by the drive member; a seal box including an outer cylinder fixedly mounted on a tundish cover and extending into the tundish, and an inner cylinder telescopically fitted in the outer cylinder and connected to the lift rod member through a lever; a first seal member fixed at the upper end of the inner cylinder and pressed against a nozzle mounting surface of the laddle when the inner cylinder is lifted up by the lift rod member; a second seal member fixed on the outer cylinder to seal gap space between the outer and inner cylinders; and an inert gas inlet provided in the wall of the inner cylinder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 1984
    Date of Patent: November 29, 1994
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Kobe Seiko Sho
    Inventors: Kouhachi Nishimura, Takanobu Kishino
  • Patent number: 5067630
    Abstract: A vending machine has a carousel containing several rotatable trays stacked one above another. The trays carry and present for vending selected items, such as food and merchandise. The carousel is contained in a housing or canister and is part of an integrated assembly with a coin container. The carousel is filled at a central depot rather than at the site where the machine is installed for use by customers. The customer locations have the cabinet of the machine. Fixed in the cabinet is a drive mechanism for the carousel and locating and guide members which enable integrated assemblies to be removed from the cabinet and fresh assemblies, with the carousel trays loaded at the central depot, to be installed in place of the removed assemblies. The coin box when empty is equipped with a mechanism which is set to enable coins to drop into the container and is automatically reset so as to close the opening when the assembly is removed from the cabinet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 1988
    Date of Patent: November 26, 1991
    Assignee: G. T. Norton, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas A. Nesser, Deborah L. Nesser, Edward P. Joslyn, Bernard J. Rick, Herbert Luckower, John P. Barczak
  • Patent number: 5020698
    Abstract: An ice-cream ejector for ejecting ice-cream filled with solid ingredients into an edible cone from a cup having a lower outlet. The cup is supported on a sliding shelf. A piston is pressed downwardly into the cup by a hand lever to press the ice cream out. The piston is quickly removable from the ejector for cleaning. A flexible resilient header extends across the underside of the piston and is removable for cleaning. A disposable piston cover of wax paper clings to the piston header as the piston retracts. The piston has an inclined wall portion guiding the piston into alignment with the cup during piston entry. Visibility of the outlet during cone-filling is increased by a notch in the shelf and by having the cup outlet below the shelf.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 1988
    Date of Patent: June 4, 1991
    Inventor: Jimmy L. Crossley
  • Patent number: 5007558
    Abstract: An ornamentally-shaped, nonrectangular interconnected or interfolded disposable paper product, which includes ornamentally-shaped forms including male protrusions and female indentations. On the interconnected embodiments perforations are located between adjacent and contiguous ornamentally-shaped forms at the points of contiguities. In addition to the paper forms being cut to certain shapes, the perforations finish the definition of the ornamentally-shaped forms which may include such forms as hearts, stars, flowers, beer can motifs, and other such forms. These disposable paper products may include bathroom tissue, paper towels, and pop-up facial tissues and paper napkins.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 1988
    Date of Patent: April 16, 1991
    Inventors: Joyce Allen, Kathy M. Bonner
  • Patent number: 5005691
    Abstract: An apparatus for suspending garments on hangers has an indexible conveyor for three equidistant hanger holders. When the conveyor is idle, each holder is located at one of three different stations. A mechanism at the first station serves to introduce an empty hanger into the pocket of the holder at the first station. Such holder is then moved to the second station where an operator applies one or more articles of clothing to the holder and to the hanger in the respective pocket. The conveyor is then indexed again to move the holder and the garment-carrying hanger to the third station where a mechanism removes the hanger and the garment before the holder is moved back to the first station. Each holder resembles the upper part of a human torso to facilitate the application of articles of clothing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 1989
    Date of Patent: April 9, 1991
    Assignee: Manfred A. Jennewein
    Inventors: Manfred A. Jennewein, Achim Ballweg
  • Patent number: 5000656
    Abstract: An apparatus for stacking and storing articles and subsequently unstacking the articles. The apparatus includes a first conveyor to convey a plurality of articles, and a plurality of secondary conveyors are disposed normal to a side edge of the first conveyor. To store the articles, each article is stopped on the conveyor and is pushed laterally from the main conveyor into bearing engagement against a movable stop member on a secondary conveyor. Additional articles are pushed onto the secondary conveyor into engagement with the preceding article to form a composite stack. The composite stack can be lifted from the secondary conveyor by a lifting mechanism to a storage site, and subsequently, when it is desired to release the stack from storage, the stack is lowered back onto the secondary conveyor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 1990
    Date of Patent: March 19, 1991
    Assignee: Dorner Mfg. Corp.
    Inventors: Wolfgang C. Dorner, Kenneth N. Hansen, Todd A. Eggebrecht, John C. Redding
  • Patent number: 4993596
    Abstract: According to the present invention, a gun is provided which has a valve assembly receiver and a product discharge valve assembly which are adapted to cooperate with each other and which may be readily and accurately secured together in a fast, foolproof manner. The product discharge valve assembly may be readily removed by hand without the use of tools, and misalignment between the inlet passages on the valve assembly and the outlet passages in the gun body is eliminated. The outlet and inlet ports respectively are aligned securely and positively by the combination of a V-groove self-centering arrangement on the receiver, a counterpart arrangement on the discharge valve assembly, and a cooperating alignment on the discharge valve assembly, and a cooperating alignment and locking stud unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1985
    Date of Patent: February 19, 1991
    Assignee: Insta-Foam Products Inc.
    Inventor: Daniel P. Brown
  • Patent number: 4992016
    Abstract: An apparatus for charging and discharging yarn cheeses from cheese frames. A frame has a locking rod extending downwardly therefrom. The frame also supports a vertically traversing carriage. The carriage mounts a pair of gripping arms which extend downwardly therefrom and which are disposed about, and rotatable about, the locking rod. The free end of the locking rod may be expanded to hold yarn cheeses thereon, and the free ends of the gripping arms have grippers to raise or lower a yarn cheese onto or off of the locking rod. Rotation of the arms allows them to be placed within spaces adjacent closely packed yarn cheeses. The entire frame is movable in two directions to properly place the locking rod.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 12, 1988
    Date of Patent: February 12, 1991
    Assignee: Camel Robot S.p.A.
    Inventor: Alessandro Ferloni
  • Patent number: 4991749
    Abstract: A manually-operated dispenser for user-controlled discharge of an internally-stored fluid includes a variable length assembly normally driven to its maximum longitudinal extension for fluid-tightly closing a fluid discharge opening and a vent opening disposed at opposite ends of an elongated housing, a piston bounding an end of an internal fluid reservoir and operatively movable along the housing for volumetrically reducing the reservoir and for driving stored fluid toward and through the discharge opening, and an actuator assembly manually operable by the user for causing controlled foreshortening of the variable length assembly whereby the fluid discharge and vent openings are concurrently opened permitting the forced discharge of a correspondingly controlled volume of stored fluid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 1989
    Date of Patent: February 12, 1991
    Assignee: Photofinish Cosmetics, Inc.
    Inventors: Nathan Kay, Donald W. McNab, Edward J. Moya
  • Patent number: 4982835
    Abstract: Brackets are provided that may be economically formed of only several pieces, and which pieces may be easily and mechanically assembled onto side framing of the conveyor system. Each bracket has a horizontal disposed piece and a vertically disposed piece which are arranged to lie adjacent and cross corresponding vertical and horizontal sides of the side framing, generally meeting across the lower corner and extending beyond the corresponding sides. Clamps cooperate with the brackets to form elongated slots, operable to allow the secure attachment of attachments or accessories usable with the conveyor system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 23, 1989
    Date of Patent: January 8, 1991
    Assignee: Intepro, Inc.
    Inventors: James R. Butler, Roger L. Broederdorf
  • Patent number: 4982836
    Abstract: A conveyor of the type having a flexible endless belt with generally horizontal top and lower return levels is movably supported for delivering materials between load and unload stations. A plurality of transversely spaced pairs of wheeled trolleys or other types of slide mechanisms are movably mounted on spaced horizontal guide rails and are attached to opposite sides of the conveyor belt by brackets and small sections of flexible belt material. Each of the trolleys has a pair of horizontally mounted wheels and a pair of vertically mounted wheels which move with the conveyor belt along the guide rails to maintain accurate guidance and tracking of the conveyor belt. One of the trolleys of each pair is spring biased to compensate for possible variations in the guide rails.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 1989
    Date of Patent: January 8, 1991
    Assignee: Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc.
    Inventor: Roger L. Summers
  • Patent number: 4982873
    Abstract: A two-stage auger system for filling a valve bag with a particulate material, such as dry powdered or granular material, from a hopper through a valved opening in the bag. The auger system includes a first hollow shaft carrying flights dimensioned and pitched for low speed movement of the particulate material out of the hopper and a second shaft extending through and protruding from the first shaft carrying flights on its protruding portion dimensioned and pitched for higher speed movement of the particulate material from the first mentioned flights. A filling tube is provided to cooperate with the second shaft for higher speed discharge of the particulate material through the filling tube into the bag through the valved opening. Bearings are provided to rotationally seat the second shaft member within the first shaft member on opposite ends of the first shaft member so that the second shaft member can rotate within the first shaft member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 1988
    Date of Patent: January 8, 1991
    Assignee: Stone Container Corporation
    Inventors: Robert G. Kelley, R. Phillip VanAusdal, Christopher S. Wadium
  • Patent number: 4978033
    Abstract: A dispensing device utilizing a gas pocket assembly. The gas pocket assembly includes an inflatable gas pocket and a cylindrical mounting seat. The dispensing device has a gas introduction mechanism for introducing high-pressure gas to the gas pocket assembly, a pressurized cylinder for containing liquid, and a dispensing head mechanism for dispensing the liquid. the gas pocket assembly is secured to a bottom wall of the pressurized cylinder. The dispensing of the liquid, which creates a gradual dropping of pressure, causes the inflatable gas pocket to swell or inflate gradually until the interior of the pressurized cylinder is entirely occupied by the gas pocket.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 30, 1989
    Date of Patent: December 18, 1990
    Inventor: Sen H. Chou
  • Patent number: 4978442
    Abstract: A large magnetic separator for separating magnetic fines from nonmagnetic product is equipped with a dual mode power supply. A first mode of the dual power supply is provided for accelerated imposition of the design magnetic field. A second mode of the dual power supply is provided for the maintenance of the desired magnetic field at an improved power factor, which field is in the range of 20 kilogauss. With the field imposed, a canister centrally placed in the magnet with a magnetic stainless steel wool matrix separates magnetic fines from nonmagnetic product until the matrix is saturated. Upon saturation of the matrix, the power supply dissipates to the power grid electrical energy from the collapse of the magnetic field. There results a larger classifying duty cycle of the high stationary magnetic fluid utilized for classification.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 24, 1989
    Date of Patent: December 18, 1990
    Assignee: Pacific Electric Motor Co.
    Inventors: James A. Tillotson, III, Kenneth M. Crowe
  • Patent number: 4977999
    Abstract: A container handler for use with an over-and-under conveyor having upper and lower gravity-type roller conveyor sections disposed vertically one above the other. The container handler is disposed directly adjacent the discharged end of the upper conveyor and has a support platform alignable with the upper conveyor so that a container can be discharged from the upper conveyor onto the support platform for engagment with a stop. The front end of support platform, namely the end with the container stop, can be vertically lowered by an operator to facilitate access to the container. The front end can be vertically raised and lowered by a first lifting device and, when the operator is completed with his operations, the first lifting device lowers the front end of the support platform to a lowermost position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 1989
    Date of Patent: December 18, 1990
    Assignee: Smock Material Handling Company, Inc.
    Inventor: William L. Smock
  • Patent number: 4977981
    Abstract: An apparatus for providing access by a handicapped person from a landing to a guideway mounted vehicle includes a support structure having a pedestal portion and a housing extending upward from the pedestal; a lift, mounted in a lift opening of the support structure, includes a platform, linkages interconnecting the platform to the housing, and movement apparatus coupled to selectively move the platform between a lowered position adjacent a landing, a raised position adjacent the top of the pedestal and a vertical storage position in the lift opening; a bridge member pivots between a horizontal position extending into the doorway of a light rail vehicle and a vertical storage position in the passage adjacent the bridge opening; roll-up doors are mounted in the top region of the housing for being slectively rolled down to a position to cover the lift opening and bridge opening when the lift and bridge are in their respective storage positions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 1989
    Date of Patent: December 18, 1990
    Assignee: Ricon Corporation
    Inventor: Gregory J. Paquin
  • Patent number: 4978037
    Abstract: The invention concerns a dispenser for the metered delivery of materials in paste form, with a tubular housing in which a follower piston in incrementally displaceable in the direction of discharge, and with an actuating key, positioned adjacent to a discharge nozzle, for the displacement of the surface of a pump diaphragm, fastened at its edges, from its rest position in the direction of the follower piston. The follower piston has a closable air vent. The pump diaphragm has a series of radially extending formations which materially increase its recovery capacity following a pumping stroke.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 1988
    Date of Patent: December 18, 1990
    Assignee: Colgate-Palmolive Company
    Inventor: Alfred V. Schuckmann
  • Patent number: 4978112
    Abstract: A sheet feeder is disclosed, which is mounted in a printer for feeding cut printing sheets one by one to a printing position in the printer. The sheet feeder comprises first and second sheet accommodation sections for accommodating respective stacks of printing sheets. First and second feed roller mechanisms are provided for the respective sheet accommodation sections. These roller mechanisms selectively receive a drive torque from a single reversible drive motor via a selective coupling mechanism. The selective coupling mechanism senses the direction of rotation of the drive motor, and selectively couples the drive motor to either one of the first and second roller mechanisms according to the sensed direction of rotation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 1988
    Date of Patent: December 18, 1990
    Assignee: Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Takeshi Yokoi
  • Patent number: 4976376
    Abstract: A dispensing machine (100) is divided into three compartments (110, 112, 114). An animal-like figure including the body and head of an elephant (118) is located in a central compartment (112) and the head (118) can be rotated on the body by a drive mechanism (134) in the upper compartment (114). A number of non-prize containing packages (130) are provided in the central compartment (112) and prize-containing packages are located in the upper compartment (114). In operation, upon insertion of coins into the coin mechanism (154) the drive mechanism (134) is operated and causes the head (118) to turn through passing through the non-prize containing packages (130). Upon each cycle, one prize-containing package from the upper compartment (114) is released from the upper compartment and passes into the passage (112) in the head (118). The prize-containing package is discharged from the trunk of the head through opened bottomed bucket (128) into a prize-receiving receptacle (166).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 1989
    Date of Patent: December 11, 1990
    Assignee: Topline Leisure Ltd.
    Inventor: Geoffrey A. Williams
  • Patent number: 4976344
    Abstract: A method for transferring articles from a conveyor to a rack or magazine. The articles are gripped one at a time by a gripping device and are moved from the conveyor while being brought to a correct position of alignment in relation to the rack, whereafter the article is placed in the rack. In accordance with the invention the article transfer is effected in at least two transfer stations which work in parallel and which are arranged one after the other along the conveyor path, each transfer station including an industrial robot. A plurality of racks are moved sequentially along a path which extends through all transfer stations. Only a given part of each rack is filled in each transfer station, such that the rack will be completely filled subsequent to passing through all the transfer stations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 1987
    Date of Patent: December 11, 1990
    Assignee: AB Volvo
    Inventor: Jimmy Hultberg