With Separate Inlet For Replenishment Or Access Patents (Class 221/281)
  • Patent number: 5547105
    Abstract: A can vending mechanism comprising a module containing three vertically-extending channels arranged front-to-back and dimensioned to vend cylindrical products, such as cans, with their longitudinal axes parallel to the front face of a vending machine to achieve greater product capacity. A sold-out switch is provided in each channel. Each sold out switch is activated when two products remain in escrow at the bottom of its respective channel. The channels are refilled without the use of diverters by dropping new products into the channels. The two products remaining in escrow at the bottom of each channel absorb the shock of the falling products.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 20, 1996
    Assignee: Royal Vendors, Inc.
    Inventors: Kenneth W. Oden, Michael D. Ring
  • Patent number: 5540315
    Abstract: A vending rack for a vending machine is formed of a housing, a path for a merchandise defined in the housing and having an inlet side and an outlet side, an inlet regulating device situated at the inlet side of the path for regulating a size of the merchandise to be supplied to the path, a vending mechanism situated near the outlet side of the path, and an outlet regulating plate situated at the outlet side of the path. The position of the outlet regulating plate is adjusted according to the size of the merchandise. A connecting rod is situated between the inlet regulating device and the outlet regulating plate. The connecting rod is movably attached to the housing so that when one of the inlet regulating device and the outlet regulating plate is moved to adjust the size of the merchandise, the other of the inlet regulating device and the outlet regulating plate is moved to thereby adjust the inlet regulating device and the outlet regulating plate in one adjustment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 30, 1996
    Assignee: Fuji Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Nobuhiko Haiki, Yoshitada Tamura, Mitsuhiro Saka
  • Patent number: 5531356
    Abstract: This invention contains and arranges spherical objects such as golf balls in an orderly manner so that the contained objects can be easily accessed. The spherical objects can be dumped in, in quantity, yet removed simply and easily one at a time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 2, 1996
    Inventor: John R. Baker
  • Patent number: 5529208
    Abstract: The present invention includes a jar ticket dispensing apparatus and method for dispensing jar tickets in response to an operator input. The invention includes an enclosed drum for containing the tickets. A support means supports the drum for rotation thereof. The drum is adapted to be rotated by an electric motor or other conventional device. A control means controls the dispensing of tickets in response to an input of money to the apparatus. The tickets are dispensed by rotating the drum causing the tickets contained therein to come into magnetic contact with a plurality of magnets residing on the drum and to be releasably secured thereto. Dispensing occurs when the magnetically attached ticket encounters a stripper which strips the ticket from the magnet. The dispensed ticket falls into a dispensing chute which dispenses the ticket to the operator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 25, 1996
    Assignee: Technik Mfg., Inc.
    Inventors: Dennis L. Carstens, Kent E. Carstens, Howard A. Weisser, David L. Brezenski
  • Patent number: 5520309
    Abstract: A chalk dispenser for containing and dispensing chalk. In one embodiment, the chalk dispenser is in the shape of a box and has a partially closed bottom, with laterally opening sides so that individual pieces of chalk can be pushed or pulled from the bottom. The bottom is preferably concave shaped to be complimentary to the shape of the chalk being dispensed. A window is provided in the front of the dispenser so that the level of chalk can be determined. In a second embodiment, a plurality of parallel channels are provided into which individual pieces of chalk can be inserted. The channels are preferably concave in shape with slots so that the chalk can be contacted by a user and slid out of the channel. The channels have a length which is slightly less than the length of the chalk so that the ends of the chalk can be grasped by a user and pulled or pushed from the channels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 25, 1994
    Date of Patent: May 28, 1996
    Inventor: Alfred C. Roth
  • Patent number: 5482183
    Abstract: A device for heating and manually dispensing small vials or carpules. The device includes a generally rectangular housing having a top wall with a lid. The lid provides access to the interior of the housing. The interior of the housing includes a vial feed chamber and a sliding dispensing member. The interior of the housing is heated with a small incandescent light bulb. The dispensing member has a notch near the leading edge for loading vials when in a retracted position and dispensing vials when in an extended position, the extended position reaching beyond the housing of the dispenser.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 1994
    Date of Patent: January 9, 1996
    Inventors: Jeff R. Beal, Mike T. Kalinowski, Sr.
  • Patent number: 5462198
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a modular bottle dispenser apparatus used for dispensing bottles. Each dispenser includes a receiver opening, a dispenser opening, a continuous guide channel which restricts the side to side and up and down motion of a bottle as it moves from the receiver opening to the dispenser opening, a friction reducing member and a door that covers the receiver opening. Several dispensers can be interlocked to each other through interlocking members provided by the dispenser. The interlocking of several dispenser allows the display of various products in one contiguous setting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 23, 1994
    Date of Patent: October 31, 1995
    Assignee: Miles Inc.
    Inventor: Alan F. Schwimmer
  • Patent number: 5460294
    Abstract: A subassembly for use in a computerized medicine dispensing station is disclosed. The station has a cabinet for housing openable drawers in stacked arrangement containing dispensable pharmaceutical items. The subassembly includes a drawer having a base plate, side walls, and a front panel defining an interior compartment. The drawer can be inserted into the cabinet. The interior compartment of the drawer is divided into subcompartments, each subcompartment defined by spaced apart side walls and a curved rear wall. Each subcompartment contains a movable magazine mounted therein for racetrack-like movement therein between the spaced apart side wall and the curved rear wall. The magazine includes individual open cups for containing single dispensable pharmaceutical items therein. The front panel has an aperture which is normally closed and locked.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 12, 1994
    Date of Patent: October 24, 1995
    Assignee: Pyxis Corporation
    Inventor: David R. Williams
  • Patent number: 5460296
    Abstract: For the transportation and storage of cigarettes (10), containers (11), which are open on a large-area front side and which, furthermore, have a downwardly directed emptying orifice (17), are used. This emptying orifice (17) is directed upwards before the emptying operation. In order to guarantee a regular fault-free emptying of the container (11), with the emptying orifice (17) directed downwards, there can be introduced into the container (11) pressure member (25) which extends over the entire length of a cigarette level (24) and which exerts slight pressure on the cigarettes (10). An exact horizontal cigarette level (24) is thereby established. The pressure member (25) rests on the cigarettes (10) over the entire length of the latter. To introduce the pressure member (25) into the container (11) in an upper position, the pressure member (25) s displaceable by a transversely movable actuating member, especially by a crosshead (60).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 1994
    Date of Patent: October 24, 1995
    Assignee: Focke & Co (GmbH & Co.)
    Inventors: Heinz Focke, Hugo Mutschall
  • Patent number: 5447253
    Abstract: A dispenser for condoms includes a box-like structure with two side walls, a front wall, a back wall, and a slanting floor. The condoms are loaded through the top of the dispenser and gravity fed through a dispensing slot at the bottom of the dispenser. A second embodiment includes a loading tool which facilitates the orderly loading of packages of condoms within the dispenser. The loading tool includes a loading platform and a detachable handle. The detachable handle is inserted through a vertical slot in the rear of the dispenser and attached to the loading platform disposed within the dispenser. The loading platform is lowered within the dispenser as condoms are stacked on the loading platform.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 5, 1994
    Date of Patent: September 5, 1995
    Inventor: Artis H. Williams
  • Patent number: 5388698
    Abstract: A carrier/dispenser includes an outer container having openings at the top and at the bottom, and a removable cap that fits frictionally over the top opening. Inside the container is a plurality of units, each unit including a capsule that nests or interfits frictionally atop the other capsules inside the container. Each of the capsules is adapted to receive and hold a discrete, precise quantity of a desired powdered or solid substance such as a pill or tablet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 1993
    Date of Patent: February 14, 1995
    Inventor: Hiroshi Wakao
  • Patent number: 5379915
    Abstract: Apparatus for storing and dispensing pieces of chalk, the apparatus comprising a container including an outside surface having an input port and an output port formed therein such that the output port is positioned other than directly beneath the input port, a chalk channel positioned within the container and connecting the input port to the output port such that the input port is located at a highest point of the channel and the output port is located at a lowest point of the channel, the channel having a width so as to allow each piece of chalk within the channel to contact no more than two other pieces of chalk in the channel, and a dispensing rack extending from the outside surface of the container proximate to the output port for holding at least one piece of chalk.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 1993
    Date of Patent: January 10, 1995
    Inventors: Brett A. Hudspeth, Earl L. Hudspeth
  • Patent number: 5368190
    Abstract: An apparatus for vending work objects having a main frame; a vend mechanism; a subframe, composed of a plurality of modules defining at least one work object storage area, mounted on the main frame; a mount releasably mounting the vend mechanism in vending relation to work objects received in the work object storage area; and a control system for operating the vend mechanism selectively to vend the work objects from the work object storage area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 1993
    Date of Patent: November 29, 1994
    Inventors: Larry E. Hieb, Toshiyuki Takamura
  • Patent number: 5361937
    Abstract: An articulated gravity feed module includes a curved chute for holding items for sale, the chute having a curved bottom wall with a radius of curvature decreasing from a rear portion to a front portion, and side walls connected with the bottom wall; a mounting assembly mounting the chute to a wall; a hopper for supplying items to the chute, the hopper including an elongated enclosure having an open upper end for restocking the items and an open lower end which is always open to the chute for depositing items on the chute, the elongated enclosure being formed by a rear wall, a front wall and interconnecting side walls, the rear wall having a lower portion with a radius of curvature similar to that of the rear portion of the bottom wall of the chute so that the lower portion of the rear wall rides along the rear portion of the bottom wall of the chute; pivot pins pivotally securing the hopper to the chute at a position above the chute, such that the hopper is pivotable between an upright dispensing position adj
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 8, 1993
    Date of Patent: November 8, 1994
    Assignee: Henschel-Steinau, Inc.
    Inventor: Lee R. Wiese
  • Patent number: 5356033
    Abstract: A beverage can dispensing method and apparatus for use in a refrigerator comprising three angularly disposed shelves, two said shelves being angularly disposed from front to rear to enable cans to roll from front to rear. A third shelf angularly disposed in a downward direction from the rear to the front to allow cans to descend from said first two shelves to the third shelf and ultimately to the position of ejectment from the front of the dispenser and means cooperable therewith to raise a can for ejectment by reason of the pressure of other cans on said third shelf against a can in the ejectment position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 1, 1992
    Date of Patent: October 18, 1994
    Inventor: David Delaney
  • Patent number: 5351856
    Abstract: A vending machine (10) includes three individual vendors (28), each of which dispenses cigarettes (20) one at a time. Cigarettes (20) are loaded into a holding bin (50) via a loading box (30) having a removable, horizontal floor (62). The cigarettes (20) reside in the holding bin (50) in a horizontal orientation. The holding bin (50) feeds the cigarettes to a slot (102) in a cylindrical, horizontally disposed dispensing member (52). The dispensing member (52) rotates in a single direction under the control of a coin mechanism (22). As the coin mechanism rotates, an agitator (124) cooperates with dimensioning in the holding bin (50) to prevent arches or bridges from forming and to insure that a cigarette (20) is fed into the slot (102). Continued rotation of the dispensing member (52) causes the cigarette (20) contained within the slot (102) to pass out of the holding bin (50) and fall into a dispensing tray ( 54).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 28, 1992
    Date of Patent: October 4, 1994
    Inventor: Ronald W. Laidlaw
  • Patent number: 5335817
    Abstract: An improved sealed dispenser for sequentially dispensing filters utilizing a band tangentially contacting a portion of the periphery of a wheel thereby providing a frictionalized surface. Filters may be added to the top of the dispenser in a prepackaged set and the packaging becomes a sealing top to the dispenser. A single filter can be drawn from a stack of filters positioned in the dispenser by rotating the wheel using an externally attached knob, which passes a single filter by friction between the wheel and the band. The filter exits the dispenser via a pivotably closable door located at the lower part of the front of the dispenser.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 1993
    Date of Patent: August 9, 1994
    Inventor: Ernest G. Powers
  • Patent number: 5335822
    Abstract: An apparatus for dispensing tickets from a stack includes a base. A frame for enclosing a stack of tickets is fixedly mounted on the base. A partition wall whose position can be changed to accommodate tickets of different sizes is removably mounted in the frame. A gate for receiving tickets and allowing only one ticket at a time to pass through is also fixedly mounted on the base. The gate includes a slider element which is adjusted to different heights by a screw having two different sized threads in order to accommodate tickets of different thickness.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 11, 1993
    Date of Patent: August 9, 1994
    Assignee: Algonquin Industries, Inc.
    Inventor: Kazmier J. Kasper
  • Patent number: 5322185
    Abstract: An apparatus is described which can receive a large number of earplugs from a box and dispense one or two of them at a time to a worker. The apparatus includes a wheel (22, FIG. 1) which is rotatable on a frame (12) and which has holes (24) that move in a circular path and that can each receive a single earplug (16). As each hole moves over a dispense passage 18, the earplug in the hole can fall out, and be dispensed. A barrier (42, FIG. 2) lying above the wheel, prevents an earplug from falling into a hole that lies at the passage. The barrier covers only one side (52) of the path (32) of the holes, to allow a deformed earplug to move along the other, uncovered side (54) of the path. The wheel has a narrow slot (80) extending from each hole to the periphery, so a tool can be projected through a frame opening (84) and through the slot to dislodge an earplug stuck in a wheel hole.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 27, 1993
    Date of Patent: June 21, 1994
    Inventor: Howard S. Leight
  • Patent number: 5318201
    Abstract: An apparatus for agitating filters in a feed hopper from which the filters are fed pneumatically to a filter attaching machine. The hopper drive apparatus includes an independent drive and speed reducer mechanism that drives the filter agitators as long as the filter attaching machine receives filters. The agitation system uses a stand alone independent drive system that uses a timing belt to drive the agitators. This agitation system provides a means for operating with fragile, segmented charcoal filters in that the filters are permitted to move up and down more freely than with conventional agitation devices, allowing more room for incoming filters from the receiver and reducing damage to the filters and jamming of the filters in the transfer system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 14, 1993
    Date of Patent: June 7, 1994
    Assignee: Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation
    Inventors: Byron L. Lowe, Robert L. Grizzard
  • Patent number: 5294020
    Abstract: An apparatus for displaying and dispensing cylindrical objects having a diameter and a length along an axis includes a base supporting a reservoir configured and arranged to hold a plurality of cylindrical objects to be dispensed. The reservoir communicates with a downwardly and forwardly extending chute terminating in a forward display position on the base. The cylindrical object displayed in the display position is axially distended from the plurality of cylindrical objects held in the reservoir. Thus, upon loading a plurality of cylindrical objects into the reservoir, the chute and display position are filled with cylindrical objects and upon removal of a cylindrical object from the display position, cylindrical objects descend under the influence of gravity from the reservoir to the chute and from the chute to the display position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 4, 1992
    Date of Patent: March 15, 1994
    Assignee: Decision Point Marketing, Inc.
    Inventor: Steven A. Kunz
  • Patent number: 5285927
    Abstract: A container/dispenser for used plastic shopping bags which comprises a walled vessel having an open top and an open bottom to which is secured a converging lower section formed of flexible walls with an internal friction surface terminating in a small opening through which the inserted bags may be withdrawn one at a time when compressed in the vessel by a handled lid pressed into the vessel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 1993
    Date of Patent: February 15, 1994
    Inventor: Sam Pruitt
  • Patent number: 5280845
    Abstract: An apparatus is described which can receive a large number of earplugs from a box and dispense one or two of them at a time to a worker, which avoids touching of the earplugs by any other person. The apparatus includes a wheel (22, FIG. 1 ) which is rotatable on a frame (12) and which has holes (24) that are each capable of holding a single earplug (26). As the wheel turns, earplugs fall into the holes. As each hole moves to a dispense location (30), the earplug in the hole can fall out of the hole along a dispense passage (16). A barrier (42) lying above the wheel, prevents an earplug from falling into a hole that lies at the dispense location, and sweeps away any second earplug which lies partially within a hole approaching the dispense location. A large number of earplugs are contained in a box (80) which is installed in an open top (82) of the dispenser.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 1992
    Date of Patent: January 25, 1994
    Inventor: Howard S. Leight
  • Patent number: 5277331
    Abstract: An apparatus for vending spherical objects such as golf balls including a housing from which the balls are loaded onto the upper end of an inclined row of parallel tracks thereby forming a column of balls in each track. A rotatable horizontal shaft is located adjacent to the lower end of the tracks. Tines are secured to the shaft such that, as the shaft rotates, the lowermost ball in each column is scooped up successively by the tines and deposited in a chute leading to a bucket. The tines are located in staggered positions on the shaft so that the number of balls discharged into the bucket depends on the length of time that the shaft rotates. A buyer may select his/her desired number of balls by inserting coins into slots that activate one of a number of timers having various time periods.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 1992
    Date of Patent: January 11, 1994
    Inventor: Louis P. Barbaccia
  • Patent number: 5255817
    Abstract: A system and method is provided-for low cost dispensing of soft packaged articles. The soft packaged articles include internally positioned forming member. The forming member and articles are then enclosed in protective material and heat shrinked so that each soft packaged article is uniformly shaped below the forming member. A dispenser for holding and dispensing one soft packaged article at a time is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 1990
    Date of Patent: October 26, 1993
    Assignee: Four D, Incorporated
    Inventors: Kenneth H. Reiland, Mary J. Reiland, Ronald J. Herold
  • Patent number: 5253784
    Abstract: A tube and plunger assembly for dispensing disc shaped game chips to a game board. The tube is elongate and cylindrical in nature and has opposing ends, with one end for loading the chips into the tube and the other end for dispensing the chips individually to a game board. The end that receives the game chips has a funnel to aid in loading and aligning the chips along the longitudinal central axis inside of the tube. The other opposing end of the tube has a resilient chip interference on the inside diameter and close to the end of the tube, and the tube terminates in a game board abutment surface. A slot is formed having a first portion extending axially along the longitudinal center line of the tube and intermediate the opposing ends and a second slot portion extending radially outwardly from the center line of the tube, with the second portion located on the receiving end of the tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 1992
    Date of Patent: October 19, 1993
    Inventor: Gary Kossel
  • Patent number: 5247798
    Abstract: A portable cabinet for effecting the cooling of beverage containers by utilization of a thermoelectric cooling unit comprises a rectilinear cabinet having spaced inner and outer walls formed of plastic and having the space between filled with a foam plastic. An upper container insertion opening and a lower container removal opening is provided in the front wall of the cabinet. A core block is inserted within the inner walls of the container and cooperates with the inner wall surfaces of the cabinet to define a channel extending in a downward direction between the insertion opening and the discharge opening, thereby permitting an inserted cylindrical container to roll through the channel under the influence of gravity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 19, 1993
    Date of Patent: September 28, 1993
    Assignee: Elwood H. Carpenter
    Inventor: Thomas H. Collard, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5240143
    Abstract: A mechanical vending system for vending long cylindrical objects such as pencils or the like. The system comprises a cabinet housing the unvended pencils and a coin receptor mechanism for receiving the coins and vending one pencil at a time. The coins are deposited in a coin deposit box located in the interior of the cabinet thereof for storage until the service personnel retrieve the coins and restock the pencils in the cabinet. The mechanical pencil vending system has a simplified design, a low initial cost of manufacture, is easy to install and maintain, is totally independent of an outside power source, and will allow pencils and other long cylindrical objects to be vended in locations considered impractical because of the operating labor and the power requirements of vending machines heretofore.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 1992
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1993
    Inventor: Bob I. Kornegay
  • Patent number: 5232077
    Abstract: A multivend newspaper vending machine in which substantially the entire contents of the cabinet including its front face are mounted on a base which is movable into and out of the cabinet. This not only facilitates loading, but also permits free access to the money acceptor. This is especially advantageous for servicing the money acceptor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 3, 1993
    Assignee: Gannett Co., Inc.
    Inventor: David V. Nichols
  • Patent number: 5215211
    Abstract: The specification discloses a sheet material dispenser for which the angle between axis along which sheet material is dispensed and the dispenser container may be changed. A dispensing funnel is provided on a ball that rotates about its center within a socket mounted on the container. Sheet material extends from the center of a stationary supply of sheet material around a guide bar, through openings in the ball and the container, and to the exterior of the container through the opening of the funnel. Sheet material is manually extracted from the funnel. A stabilizing member extends into a hollow core to the supply of sheet material to stabilize the supply. An access hole is formed in the container to allow adjustment and refeeding of sheet material without unlocking the container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 1991
    Date of Patent: June 1, 1993
    Assignee: Merfin Hygienic Products Ltd.
    Inventor: Kurt P. Eberle
  • Patent number: 5203472
    Abstract: A cigarette dispenser useful for aiding a person to stop smoking utilizes a movable belt for the controlled dispensing of cigarettes. The belt has openings therein which sequentially expose the open ends of cartridge compartments containing cigarettes to permit the cigarettes to be dispensed one at a time. A timing unit in the dispenser locks movement of the belt for periods of time during which the smoker is not permitted to smoke. Actual advancement of the belt is effected by the smoker at his leisure after receiving a signal signifying the end of the non-smoking period. The timing unit is in a controlled central processing unit capable of progressively increasing the duration of non-smoking periods during the course of the quitting routine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 1991
    Date of Patent: April 20, 1993
    Assignee: Longevity Products Corporation
    Inventors: Warren G. Levenbaum, David Anderson
  • Patent number: 5201822
    Abstract: Arrangements are provided for an automatic vending machine, including a vertical support frame, a top plate mounted securely on the top end of the support frame, and a bottom plate mounted securely on the bottom end of the support frame. An L-cross-sectioned side plate is hinged to a side wall of the support frame. A rib arrangement is provided on the side plate and includes an L-shaped first horizontal rib, an L-shaped second horizontal rib, an L-shaped third horizontal rib, an L-shaped fourth horizontal rib and a vertical rib. The first horizontal rib is positioned just over the top plate. The second horizontal rib is positioned just under the top plate. The entire length of the second horizontal rib extends under an intermediate portion of the first horizontal rib, so as to conceal an L-shaped peripheral plate portion of the top plate between the first and second horizontal ribs. The third horizontal rib is positioned just under the bottom plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 1991
    Date of Patent: April 13, 1993
    Inventor: Ming-Ho Chen
  • Patent number: 5191997
    Abstract: A carousel for dispensing canisters of film having a film-holding base secured to a vertical spine mounted centrally of the base, a plurality of vertical dividers extending radially from, and circumferentially of, the spine, vertically-extending wall sections secured to the outermost edges of the dividers, so that the spine, the dividers, and the wall sections together form vertical channels to receive and hold the canisters. The uppermost portions of the wall sections are open to receive the canisters, and the lowermost ends of the wall sections are spaced from the base sufficiently to permit removal of individual canisters, and the base and with the upper end of the spine are pivoted where they are to be attached to a display device so the entire unit can be rotated. If desired, the canisters can have keys on their bodies or their caps, and the channels can have corresponding key slots, so that the canisters will be held in the channels with their labels outermost.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 3, 1992
    Date of Patent: March 9, 1993
    Assignee: Mechtronics Corporation
    Inventor: Anthony C. Squitieri
  • Patent number: 5191995
    Abstract: A golf ball storage and dispensing device for transport in a golfer's bag that is operated to dispense, on demand, a single golf ball into a golfer's hand and consists of a tubular housing, that can be straight or cane shaped, and is for containing a column of golf balls that are supported on a spring biased platform therein to urge that column towards an open ball dispensing end of which tubular housing. A dispenser is provided across the dispensing end of the tubular housing that involves in one embodiment, a pivoting cup and, in another embodiment, a piston that is arranged to slide in a cylindrical sleeve, the piston to pickup and dispense a single golf ball when moved across the open tubular housing end. Both embodiments provide for depressing and locking the platform to load a column of golf balls therein, whereafter the platform is released, the spring biasing urging the column of golf balls against the dispenser.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 13, 1992
    Date of Patent: March 9, 1993
    Inventor: Gayle McDonald
  • Patent number: 5190133
    Abstract: A bulk vending machine apparatus comprising a housing with one or more hopper bins located therein for containing and storing bulk products, a dispensing mechainsm located in the housing for dispensing a portion of the bulk products upon payment thereinto of a coin or coins, a coin storage compartment for secure storage of coins paid into the dispensing mechanism, a cover panel for covering a first opening in the housing for providing access to the one or more hopper bins for refilling thereof with bulk products, an access panel for covering a second opening in the housing for providing access to the coin storage compartment, a first locking member located on and operable to lockingly secure one of the cover panel and the access panel in a closed position, the first locking member accessible from the exterior of the housing, and a second locking member located inside the housing and accessible behind the panel securable by the locking member, the second locking member operable to lockingly secure the other of
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 1991
    Date of Patent: March 2, 1993
    Assignee: The Northwestern Corporation
    Inventor: Richard K. Bolen
  • Patent number: 5135134
    Abstract: A package and dispenser for a continuous roll of plastic bags has a generally cylindrical shape and a longitudinal slot for dispensing the bags. Adjacent bags on the roll are attached by a perforated tear line. The dispenser is deformable to allow the operator to grip the roll by squeezing the dispenser, preventing further rotation of the roll, and allowing a bag to be removed from the roll. The dispenser is transparent, allowing indicia to be seen from a flyer inserted into the dispenser and around the roll. The flyer also blocks the slot so that bags cannot be removed during storage or shipping.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 4, 1992
    Inventor: H. Gordon Dancy
  • Patent number: 5135135
    Abstract: Storage, display and dispensing apparatus for carded product is disclosed. The dispenser has front and back faces and opposite side faces defining a channel adapted to contain carded product in a vertically nested arrangement. An opening is provided in the lower end of the front face which permits only the lowermost product to be removed from the channel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 4, 1992
    Inventor: Archie A. Olivier
  • Patent number: 5131564
    Abstract: The apparatus stores and dispenses a plurality of disposable razors, the dispenser being affixable to a bathroom wall. The razors are initially loaded into the dispenser apparatus and retained therein by a pair of opposed support members, the support members extending inwardly from a pair of parallel sidewalls, the support members having a centrally disposed channel. The support members are sloped downwardly to facilitate gravitational loading of the individual razors. A flexible member is affixed to each of the support members. The dispenser apparatus has an open bottom, enabling the razors stored therewithin to be withdrawn in the same sequence that they are loaded thereinto. The opposed sidewalls of the dispenser apparatus are transparent, enabling the razors stored therewithin to be readily viewed. The dispenser apparatus also includes a razor holder mounted on the top thereof, to retain the razor currently being used.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 1990
    Date of Patent: July 21, 1992
    Inventor: Theodore N. Plonkey
  • Patent number: 5129546
    Abstract: Storage container for button-shaped batteries with a minimum of one channel, which is dimensioned to fit the cross section of the battery and which has an entrance and an exit opening, a slide, which is located inside the channel and which is secured against being pushed out of the channel by means of limit stops at the entrance and exit openings, and locks which permit the passage of the button-shaped batteries only in the direction of the exit opening. The storage container serves to store new and used button-shaped batteries, with the latter being able to be inserted only into the entrance opening, while, at the same time a new button-shaped battery is dispensed at the exit opening. After all new batteries have been used up and the storage container is filled with used button-shaped batteries, the passage is blocked so that no further button-shaped batteries can be inserted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 1990
    Date of Patent: July 14, 1992
    Assignee: Eveready Battery Company, Inc.
    Inventor: Walter R. Thielmann
  • Patent number: 5129914
    Abstract: A combination container and dispenser and insertion tube for acupuncture needles provides for the sterile storage and containment, dispensing and insertion of acupuncture needles. A storage portion of the container/dispenser is formed with an insertion tube along one edge and an internal passage between the two components. A lot in the storage portion allows manipulation of the handles of any acupunture needles within so they may be transferred through the internal passage to the insertion tube and inserted into the patient. A series of depressions and a retaining crest within the storage portion assist in retaining the needles in position until they are maneuvered through the slot. The device may be formed of a relatively inexpensive material, thus allowing for disposal after a single use, or alternatively may be formed of a more durable material capable of withstanding repeated sterilization in an autoclave or similar apparatus for reuse.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 1990
    Date of Patent: July 14, 1992
    Inventor: Jeung H. Choi
  • Patent number: 5127543
    Abstract: A device for reducing cigarette consumption is provided and consists of a container having a hopper compartment therein for holding a plurality of cigarettes. A cover is hinged to the container for normally closing the hopper compartment. A mechanism is carried in the container for allowing the dispensing of one cigarette at a time from the hopper compartment at predetermined timed intervals to make a person cut down on the amount of cigarettes they smoked.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 4, 1990
    Date of Patent: July 7, 1992
    Inventor: Cheskel Meisels
  • Patent number: 5118007
    Abstract: A tablet dispenser for housing a roll of tablets that are wrapped in a foil (or other protective material), and for sequentially removing tablets from the roll by cutting the foil. In one preferred embodiment, the roll is loaded at one end of a hollow case. A cap that attaches to the case via pivot means is located at the end of the case opposite its loading end. With the cap in a closed position, the roll is pressed in as far as possible so that the end-most tablet (to be dispensed) snugly fits to the entire interior of the cap. The cap has teeth along an interior wall. In the process of opening the cap, the teeth cut the foil and lift a tablet from the roll. When the cap is in its closed position, the roll is sealed from dust and other adverse environmental conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 1990
    Date of Patent: June 2, 1992
    Inventors: Catherine A. Lewis, Loren M. Matthews, Joseph M. Sher
  • Patent number: 5111965
    Abstract: An apparatus for automatically feeding pipette tips is disclosed. The apparatus includes a carrier for receiving the pipette tips, one at a time, and for presenting the tips to the pipette of an associated apparatus, such as a blood analyzer. The apparatus further includes a generally elongated feed magazine for gravity-feed of the pipette tips to the carrier. Notably, the feed magazine includes an angled, generally funnel-like entrance portion which prevents insertion of the pipette tips into the magazine in an incorrect orientation, while permitting the tips to be inserted in the correct orientation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 4, 1990
    Date of Patent: May 12, 1992
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Terry W. Allen, James J. Pioch
  • Patent number: 5104000
    Abstract: A permanent wave end paper dispenser allows a beauty operator to dispense permanent wave end papers from a housing in a one at a time manner, utilizing only one hand. The dispenser includes a rectangular housing with an inclined ramp disposed adjacent a paper discharger opening formed in a front wall. The ramp has a V-shaped notch to allow an operator to grasp an end paper dispensed through the discharge opening. A paper supply drawer is removably received in a feed opening formed in a back wall of the housing, to allow refilling of the dispenser. A push button on the front wall of the housing is in abutment with a first end of a horizontally disposed plunger rod. The second end of the plunger rod and a first end of a coil spring are connected to a lowermost extension member of a vertically extending rotatable post. A second end of the coil spring is connected to the front housing wall, biasing the post and plunger rod to a return position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 1990
    Date of Patent: April 14, 1992
    Inventor: Lois S. Goff
  • Patent number: 5097982
    Abstract: Medication dispenser apparatus comprises a plurality of containers for holding different kinds of medications; an injector for selectively injecting medications from their responsive containers; a dispensing station for receiving the ejected medications; and a programmable control for controlling the ejection of medications from their respective containers according to pre-programmed kinds of medication, amounts, and times. The described preferred embodiment is a group dispenser for dispensing medications for a plurality of patients, such as in the ward of a hospital, at predetermined times and in predetermined amounts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 1988
    Date of Patent: March 24, 1992
    Inventors: Dan Kedem, Mordechai Ravid
  • Patent number: 5096089
    Abstract: A dispensing apparatus for thin, disposable plastic gloves wherein the gloves may be reliably removed one at a time in a simple manner. The apparatus comprises a generally rectangular enclosure for housing a removably mounted packet containing a plurality of gloves. The gloves are arranged in closely spaced, parallel relationship to one another for removal, one at a time, through an exit opening provided through the walls of the enclosure. Each glove is provided with a weakened tear line across the wrist portion. The packet of gloves includes a mounting strip which extends across the upper wrist portion of the stack of gloves and is fixed to each glove above the tear line. The mounting strip cooperates with means formed in the enclosure to releasably fix the packet within the enclosure. Each glove may be removed by exerting a downward force through the exit opening on the outermost glove sufficient to separate the glove along the tear line from the remaining gloves in the packet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 1991
    Date of Patent: March 17, 1992
    Inventor: David T. McLaughlin
  • Patent number: 5086948
    Abstract: A tennis ball pack apparatus for dispensing balls in one mode of operation while positioned on a player's back and retrieving balls in another mode of operation upon removal from the back. An elongated housing which is strapped to the player's back includes two pairs of spaced walls which have different lengths to define predetermined openings adjacent to an oblong shaped bottom made up of flexible connected rod members. During the ball dispensing mode the player grips a ball through an opening and pulls against the flexible rod members to dispense the balls in seriatim. A U-shaped frame which is in slidable engagement with the walls of the housing is movable from a first position closely adjacent to the housing when operating in the ball dispensing mode while on the player's back to a second position extended from the housing when operating in a ball retrieving mode upon removal of the housing from the player's back.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 1990
    Date of Patent: February 11, 1992
    Inventor: Bennet A. Slusarz
  • Patent number: 5084028
    Abstract: An IV, vacutainer, butterfly, or syringe needle cover and dispenser for a plurality of such needle covers that provides individual release of the covers. The dispenser is adapted for attachment to a wall, other surface or a tray. The dispenser is provided with a hinged door which partially covers the bottom needle cover while it allows for the insertion of a needle into that needle cover. The needle cover is provided with gripping surfaces that secure the cover to a needle after needle insertion. The hinged door swings out of the way to allow for the withdrawal from the dispenser of the needle cover attached to a needle. The device insures safe disposal of used needles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 1989
    Date of Patent: January 28, 1992
    Inventors: Michael D. Kennedy, Sanford Kurtz
  • Patent number: 5069361
    Abstract: A rotatable caddy includes a stationary frame and a generally cylindrical carrier rotatably disposed in the frame and defining longitudinally-extending compartments on the periphery thereof for the storage of elongate articles therein, such as crayons. A knob is provided for rotating the carrier about its longitudinal axis relative to the frame, and another knob is provided for discharging from a selected compartment any elongate article therein. A passageway is provided for feeding an elongate article into an empty one of the compartments without disassembly of the caddy and for releasably maintaining the elongate articles fed into the compartments in their respective compartments during rotation of the carrier relative to the frame. An anti-jamming mechanism is preferably also provided for relocating an elongated article only partially received in a compartment aligned with the feed means from that compartment and into a storage location as the carrier rotates.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 1990
    Date of Patent: December 3, 1991
    Assignee: Western Publishing Company, Inc.
    Inventors: Robert W. Jeffway, Jr., Catherine R. Dobosz
  • Patent number: 5052674
    Abstract: A simple, low cost, hand operated paper feeder includes a media chamber mounted at an acute angle with respect to a horizontal plane that allows media to exit the chamber through a membrane. A two-position, T-shaped actuator including a pair of non-rotating rolls is slidably mounted on a rail for contacting the media. A rod is connected to the actuator such that when movement of the rod is initiated in a first direction, the actuator is moved to a position contacting the media and with continued movement of the rod, a top sheet of the media is moved a predetermined amount through the membrane, and with return of the rod in a second direction to its initial position, the actuator is caused to retract from the media surface to its initial position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 1989
    Date of Patent: October 1, 1991
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventor: Conrad J. Bell