Bottom Feed Patents (Class 271/35)
  • Patent number: 9700300
    Abstract: An instrument for performing thorascopic repair of heart valves includes a shaft for extending through the chest cavity and into a heart chamber providing access to a valve needing repair. A movable tip on the shaft is operable to capture a valve leaflet and a needle is operable to penetrate a capture valve leaflet and draw the suture therethrough. The suture is thus fastened to the valve leaflet and the instrument is withdrawn from the heart chamber transporting the suture outside the heart chamber. The suture is anchored to the heart wall with proper tension as determined by observing valve operation with an ultrasonic imaging system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2017
    Assignee: Mayo Foundation For Medical Education And Research
    Inventor: Giovanni Speziali
  • Patent number: 9617092
    Abstract: An apparatus and a corresponding method for singling value documents, in particular banknotes, includes a support means and a conveyor belt for picking a single value document from a stack of value documents lying on the support means. The singling device has a positioning device by which at least a portion of the conveyor belt can be moved back and forth relative to the support means between a first position and a second position. In the first position the conveyor belt cannot touch the stack lying on the support means. In the second position the conveyor belt can touch the lowermost value document of a stack lying on the support means and pick the former from the stack at least partially.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 4, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 11, 2017
    Assignee: GIESECKE & DEVRIENT GMBH
    Inventor: Julian Muller
  • Patent number: 9481200
    Abstract: A marker plate embossing system is provided having an improved loading device, and improved chute and hopper systems. The loading device reduces the likelihood of marker plate misfeed. The chute and hopper systems allow the embossing of varying sized embossing plates, while reducing the likelihood of embossed marker plates being delivered in an incorrect stacked-order. A marker plate removal system is also provided for removing embossed marker plates from the hopper system without the marker plates falling out of the stacked-order.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 1, 2016
    Assignee: Panduit Corp.
    Inventors: James R. Ward, Mark B. Richardson, Anthony G. Smith, Sr.
  • Patent number: 9193545
    Abstract: A separation function releasing mechanism includes a frame defining two activating slots at two opposite sides, a separating mechanism which includes a bracket pivoted to the frame and a group of retard rollers rotatably mounted to the frame, a group of separating rollers located under the retard rollers, and a pushing mechanism which includes a connecting element mounted in one side of the frame and capable of sliding forward and backward. Two opposite sides of the bracket protrude outward to form a pair of activating columns slidably located in the activating slots with the distal ends projecting outward out of the activating slots. A top face of a rear of the connecting element is defined as a slantwise pushing plane and a horizontal blocking plane in front of the pushing plane which are located under and in front of the activating column to work closely with the activating column.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 24, 2015
    Assignee: FOXLINK IMAGE TECHNOLOGY CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Wei Pin Hsieh, Yung Kai Chen
  • Patent number: 9080368
    Abstract: A disposable container for valuable items that is suitable for being used in a machine for filling and closing the container, the container (16, 116) being suitable for being anchored to supporting elements (22, 23) of the machine so that a filling mouth (21, 121) of the container is positioned for receiving valuable items coming from the machine, such as banknotes, paper items (tickets, cheques, . . . ), coins, plastic chips for casinos, etc. With the edge of the mouth of the container there is associated coupling means (38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 45, 46, 138, 140, 142, 145) that is movable through the action of closing elements of the machine from a first decoupled position, wherein the mouth is open, to a second coupled position, wherein the mouth is closed, said coupling means being suitable for making an irreversible closure when it is taken to the second coupling position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 14, 2015
    Assignee: CIMA S.P.A. DI RAZZABONI & C.
    Inventors: Nicoletta Razzaboni, Vittorio Razzaboni
  • Patent number: 9079730
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for processing documents are provided. The apparatus includes a feeder for receiving a packet of a plurality of documents and separating the documents to serially feed the documents to a scanner. A retard adjacent the feeder is operable in first and second positions. In the first position the retard forms a nip with the feeder so that the retard is operable to impede the progress of one or more documents in the packet while the feeder feeds one of the documents in the packet. In the second position, the retard is spaced apart from the feeder to form a gap between the feeder and the retard. The system further includes a sensor for detecting a characteristic of the documents in a packet indicative of whether the number of documents in the packet exceeds a predetermined threshold. A drive mechanism automatically drives the retard pad between the first and second positions in response to the detected characteristic.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 19, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 14, 2015
    Assignee: OPEX CORPORATION
    Inventors: David Helmlinger, Gary Miller, Peter M. Chezik, Robert R. DeWitt
  • Patent number: 9065947
    Abstract: An image reading apparatus includes a housing, a first guide, a second guide, a first conveyor, and a reader. The first guide provides a first path between a first opening and a second opening. The second guide provides a second path between a third opening and a junction where the first path intersects the second path. The first conveyor includes first and second drive rollers, first and second driven rollers, first and second springs. The first drive roller is disposed inside a path, which includes at least the second path, between the third opening and the second opening, while the second drive roller is disposed outside the path. The first spring biases the first driven roller toward the first drive roller with a first biasing force (F1). The second spring biases the second driven roller toward the second drive roller with a second biasing force (F2), where F2>F1.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 23, 2015
    Assignee: BROTHER KOGYO KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Yuichiro Kuriki
  • Patent number: 8905397
    Abstract: A selection module for separating envelopes one-by-one from a stack of envelopes and for transporting them downstream, wherein the selection module comprises a plurality of articulated guides co-operating with a plurality of selector rollers to select said envelopes one-by-one and to transport them downstream, the plurality of articulated guides comprising two parts (120, 122) connected one to the other by a first extremity (120a, 122a) crossed by a common pivot connection (16), the respective second extremities (120b, 122b) of the two parts articulated guide being adapted to pivot about first and second pivot axis (18, 22) in opposition to first and second resilient return means (20, 24) as the envelopes pass over the selector rollers, the second pivot axis being offset downstream relative to the first pivot axis and the second resilient return means forms an inclination angle of about 45° regarding horizontally.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2014
    Assignee: Neopost Technologies
    Inventors: Stéphane Le Gallo, Dominique Bernard
  • Patent number: 8678373
    Abstract: A cut-sheet feeder has a feed belt, a belt contact amount adjuster, and an inclined guide member. The belt makes contact with the lowermost cut sheet of a stack of cut sheets and feeds forward the cut sheet. The belt contact amount adjuster supports the stack of cut sheets while lifting the read portion thereof from the feed belt. The inclined guide member protrudes further upward than the belt contact amount adjuster and has a guide surface inclined forwardly downward. The guide surface lifts up the rear end portion of the stack of cut sheets and shifts forward the lowermost cut sheet. The position of the adjuster in the front-rear direction and the position of the guide member in the front-rear direction can be adjusted individually.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 30, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 25, 2014
    Assignee: Ezawa Jimuki Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yuhiko Ito
  • Patent number: 8646652
    Abstract: A card extracting device for use with a plurality of cards may include a card storage, a gate through which the cards pass toward an outside of the card storage, an extracting tab to engage with and extract one of the cards, a tab-moving mechanism to move the extracting tab, an extracting roller outside the card storage to further forward the extracted card, a motor to drive the tab-moving mechanism and the extracting roller, a card-extraction detecting section to detect that card extraction is completed, and a control section to control the motor. An engaging section may be formed in the extracting tab to abut a rear end portion of the card and extract the card. The control section may drive the motor forward to extract the card or drive the motor in reverse based on a detection result from the card extraction detecting section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 11, 2014
    Assignee: Nidec Sankyo Corporation
    Inventors: Keiji Ohta, Yasuhiro Kitazawa
  • Patent number: 8596634
    Abstract: A system for conveying mailpieces along a feed path includes a plurality of conveyances. A first conveyance is operative to convey mailpieces along the feed path and includes a singulating and drive belt. The singulating and drive belts define a throat for singulating a mailpiece from the stack of mailpieces. A second conveyance accepts mailpieces from the first conveyance and conveys singulated mailpiece downstream of the first conveyance. The system further includes a series of sensors extending from the first to the second conveyance for issuing a gap signal indicative of the relative spacing between sequential mailpieces along the feed path. Additionally, the system includes a means, responsive to the gap signal, for developing a variable opposing force between the singulating and drive belts to optimize singulation of mailpieces along the feed path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 3, 2013
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventors: Anthony E. Yap, Richard F. Stengl, Boris Rozenfeld
  • Patent number: 8596635
    Abstract: A system for conveying mailpieces along a conveyance path and singulating a mailpiece from a stack of mailpieces along the conveyance path. The system includes a first conveyance for conveying mailpieces at a variable velocity and a second conveyance, downstream of the first conveyance, for conveying mailpieces at a constant velocity along the conveyance path. A series of optical sensors extends from the first to the second conveyance and is operative to issue a gap signal indicative of the relative spacing between sequential mailpieces along the conveyance path. A processor is responsive to the gap signal and is operative to control the first conveyance to decrease the relative spacing between sequential mailpieces when the gap signal exceeds a threshold value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 3, 2013
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventors: Anthony E. Yap, Richard F. Stengl, Boris Rozenfeld, Steven J. DaCunha
  • Publication number: 20130292895
    Abstract: A cut-sheet feeder has a feed belt, a belt contact amount adjuster, and an inclined guide member. The belt makes contact with the lowermost cut sheet of a stack of cut sheets and feeds forward the cut sheet. The belt contact amount adjuster supports the stack of cut sheets while lifting the read portion thereof from the feed belt. The inclined guide member protrudes further upward than the belt contact amount adjuster and has a guide surface inclined forwardly downward. The guide surface lifts up the rear end portion of the stack of cut sheets and shifts forward the lowermost cut sheet. The position of the adjuster in the front-rear direction and the position of the guide member in the front-rear direction can be adjusted individually.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 30, 2012
    Publication date: November 7, 2013
    Applicant: EZAWA JIMUKI CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Yuhiko Ito
  • Patent number: 8342510
    Abstract: Provided are an apparatus for feeding sheets, booklets or the like having a wider adjustable range according to the thickness of the object than the conventional apparatus, and a system for sorting forwarding documents with the foregoing feeding apparatus. In the feeding apparatus, a moving shaft is supported by a fixed sleeve so as to be movable upward and downward. A main compression coil spring is located between the moving shaft and the fixed base and imparts a main spring force to the moving shaft in order that an overlap feed limiting member is pressed against a conveying belt. A sub compression coil spring imparts an oppositely directed sub spring force to the moving shaft. A position of a pressing washer is displaced downward by a threading engagement of an upper end adjusting bolt, so that even when the spring force of the main compression coil spring is increased, an increased amount is cancelled by an increase in the spring force of the sub compression coil spring.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 1, 2013
    Assignee: Ezawa Jimuki Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yuhiko Ito
  • Patent number: 8205871
    Abstract: A separator device for separating flat articles one-by-one from a stack of flat articles and for conveying them downstream, said separator device comprising at least one flexible bag provided with a plurality of balls and co-operating with a drive member so that, by deforming while said flat articles are being conveyed downstream, it separates said flat articles one-by-one. A particular application lies in separating mailpieces.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 20, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2012
    Assignee: Neopost Technologies
    Inventor: Laurent Farlotti
  • Patent number: 8104763
    Abstract: Described herein is a system and device for singulating mail pieces during mail processing and sorting. A double inhibit mechanism, mounted opposite a feed belt assembly and having at least two degrees of freedom at its downstream end, can maintain contact with mail in the mail path while separating overlapping mail pieces and allowing only single pieces to pass thereby.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 31, 2012
    Assignee: United States Postal Service
    Inventor: Thomas C. Potter
  • Patent number: 8100397
    Abstract: A timed feeder for feeding corrugated boards to nip rolls of a box finishing machine. An indexing drive mechanism, driven by a computer-controlled servo motor, activates a feed member and has a feed phase when it drives the board to the nip rolls, and a dwell phase when the feed member is away from the feed path and the output shaft of the indexing mechanism is at zero velocity. During the feed phase, the output shaft of the indexing mechanism accelerates the feed member and the board beyond the nip roll velocity and then decelerates them to the nip roll velocity at the point where the board enters the nip rolls. During the dwell phase the input shaft is either accelerated or decelerated to change the duration of the cycle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 24, 2012
    Assignee: Sun Automation, Inc.
    Inventor: Louis M. Sardella
  • Patent number: 8083229
    Abstract: In a mailpiece feed device comprising a mailpiece-receiving deck through which motor-driven conveyor members pass and on which a stack of mailpieces stands, and a monitoring and control circuit for actuating said motor-driven members at a determined drive speed in order to enable said mailpieces to be extracted one-by-one downstream, there is provided a method of controlling said motor-driven conveyor members wherein the drive speed of said motor-driven conveyor members varies as a function of the weight of said stack of mailpieces standing on said mailpiece-receiving deck.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 10, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 27, 2011
    Assignee: Neopost Technologies
    Inventors: Fabien Chatte, Romain Pillard
  • Patent number: 8079584
    Abstract: An improved document feeder flag assembly is disclosed. The improved document feeder flag assembly allows single handed, on the fly loading of a document sorter. A method for loading a document sorting machine with a single hand, while the method of operating the machine is also disclosed. The document feeder flag assembly includes a baseplate and a pivot post attached to the baseplate. Further, the assembly includes a flag arm having a first side and a second side, the first side of the flag arm is attached to the pivot post. There is also a feeder flag having a first side and a second side, the first side of the feeder flag being attached to a second side of the flag arm. The document feeder flag assembly also includes a resistance device attached between the feeder flag and the flag arm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 20, 2011
    Assignee: Burroughs Payment Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: David B. Tratar
  • Patent number: 8025286
    Abstract: An improved document feeder flag assembly is disclosed. The improved document feeder flag assembly allows single handed, on the fly loading of a document sorter. A method for loading a document sorting machine with a single hand, while the method of operating the machine is also disclosed. The document feeder flag assembly includes a baseplate and a pivot post attached to the baseplate. Further, the assembly includes a flag arm having a first side and a second side, the first side of the flag arm is attached to the pivot post. There is also a feeder flag having a first side and a second side, the first side of the feeder flag being attached to a second side of the flag arm. The document feeder flag assembly also includes a resistance device attached between the feeder flag and the flag arm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 27, 2011
    Assignee: Burroughs Payment Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: David B. Tratar
  • Publication number: 20110121507
    Abstract: A mailpiece selector device comprising a guide co-operating with at least one opposing selector roller to separate mailpieces one-by-one from a stack of mailpieces and to transport them downstream, said guide having at least one selector lever that can pivot about a pivot axis against resilient return means, and the selector lever having a vertical section formed by an involute of a circle, the base circle of which is formed by the pivot axis.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 27, 2010
    Publication date: May 26, 2011
    Applicant: NEOPOST TECHNOLOGIES
    Inventor: Yannick CLARIS
  • Patent number: 7934719
    Abstract: An improved document feeder flag assembly is disclosed. The improved document feeder flag assembly allows single handed, on the fly loading of a document sorter. A method for loading a document sorting machine with a single hand, while the method of operating the machine is also disclosed. The document feeder flag assembly includes a baseplate and a pivot post attached to the baseplate. Further, the assembly includes a flag arm having a first side and a second side, the first side of the flag arm is attached to the pivot post. There is also a feeder flag having a first side and a second side, the first side of the feeder flag being attached to a second side of the flag arm. The document feeder flag assembly also includes a resistance device attached between the feeder flag and the flag arm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 3, 2011
    Assignee: Burroughs Payment Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: David B. Tratar
  • Patent number: 7850163
    Abstract: A sheet feeder having a stack hopper for holding a stack of sheets, and feed belts for advancing the bottom-most sheet from the stack, is constructed to move at least one of the feed belts laterally toward and away from another of the feed belts while the belts are being driven. Preferably, side guides extend substantially to the end of the feeder, and extend both above and below the upper surface of belts to which they are adjacent. The belts extend between and around shafts of uniform diameter through the reach of lateral movement of the belts. The shafts are journaled in bearings mounted in such a way that they can be lifted out to change belts quickly and easily.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 11, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 14, 2010
    Inventor: James C Kaiping
  • Patent number: 7806398
    Abstract: An ingestion assembly is provided for a singulating apparatus having a conveyor system for moving a stack of sheet material along a feed path. The ingestion assembly is spatially positioned above the conveyor belt and includes at least one singulating roller driven in a direction opposing the motion of the conveyor belt. The ingestion assembly comprises an assembly support rotationally mounting the singulating roller at a downstream end portion and pivotally mounting to the singulating apparatus at an upstream end portion. A movable guide mounts to the assembly support and is positionable relative thereto as a function of a force vector imposed on the guide by the sheet material. Additionally, the moveable guide includes a surface operative to guide the sheet material into a singulating interface which is formed between the singulating roller and the conveyor system. In operation, sheet material enters the throat of the ingestion assembly and contact is made with the moveable guide.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 2007
    Date of Patent: October 5, 2010
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventors: Steven H. Joyce, James A. Fairweather
  • Publication number: 20100176547
    Abstract: Described herein is a system and device for singulating mail pieces during mail processing and sorting. A double inhibit mechanism, mounted opposite a feed belt assembly and having at least two degrees of freedom at its downstream end, can maintain contact with mail in the mail path while separating overlapping mail pieces and allowing only single pieces to pass thereby.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 26, 2010
    Publication date: July 15, 2010
    Inventor: Thomas C. Potter
  • Patent number: 7748696
    Abstract: A sheet feeder (1) having a stack hopper (9) for holding a stack of sheets (8), and feed belts (5, 6, 7) for advancing the bottom-most sheet from the stack, has traction belts (110, 111, 112) between the feed belts. The traction belts extend around a shaft (25) beneath the hopper and around a shaft (27) positioned intermediate the reach of the feed belts, a short distance short of separators (30, 31). The traction belts are preferably thicker than the feed belts and textured on their outer surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2010
    Inventor: James C. Kaiping
  • Publication number: 20100156030
    Abstract: In a mailpiece feed device comprising a mailpiece-receiving deck through which motor-driven conveyor members pass and on which a stack of mailpieces stands, and a monitoring and control circuit for actuating said motor-driven members at a determined drive speed in order to enable said mailpieces to be extracted one-by-one downstream, there is provided a method of controlling said motor-driven conveyor members wherein the drive speed of said motor-driven conveyor members varies as a function of the weight of said stack of mailpieces standing on said mailpiece-receiving deck.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 10, 2009
    Publication date: June 24, 2010
    Applicant: NEOPOST TECHNOLOGIES
    Inventors: Fabien CHATTE, Romain Pillard
  • Patent number: 7726643
    Abstract: A friction feeder apparatus for handling sheets of paper of differing thicknesses includes a first plurality of laterally spaced apart transport belts positioned in underlying relation to the paper and a second plurality of laterally spaced apart separator wheels positioned in overlying relation to the paper. The transport belts are staggered with respect to the separator wheels. A sheet of paper passing through the feeder apparatus is undeflected from the top as it encounters the transport belts and is unsupported from the bottom as it encounters the separator wheels so that the sheet of paper is not held flat as it passes through the feeder but instead is forced into a wave-like, sinusoidal-like shape. In a first embodiment, the separator wheels are downstream of a fixed nip roller and in a second embodiment, the separator wheels are upstream of the fixed nip roller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 1, 2010
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventor: Todd C. Werner
  • Patent number: 7722028
    Abstract: A bottom friction feeder comprises a material magazine assembly, a gate assembly including a guide subassembly and a singulation gate subassembly, a back wedge assembly, and a bottom friction belt assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 2, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 25, 2010
    Inventor: Robert J. Bitner
  • Patent number: 7704037
    Abstract: A device for destacking books, brochures, or similar cubic printed products (2), wherein said device comprises a separating belt (6) that is powered by a controllable drive and serves for the cyclic separation of the respective bottom printed product (2a) from the stack (3a), lateral boundaries (8a, b) that can be adjusted to the respective format and position the stack (3a) on the separating belt (6), a height-adjustable retaining element (9) that forms a passage for the respective printed product (2a) to be separated, a support (10) in the infeed region of the separating belt (6) in order to support the rear edge of the printed product (2) lying on top of the bottom printed product during the separation of the bottom printed product (2a), and a feeding belt (5) that is arranged upstream of the separating belt (6) and serves for delivering the next stack (3b) into the separating position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 17, 2006
    Date of Patent: April 27, 2010
    Assignee: Kolbus GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventor: Klaus Gerke
  • Patent number: 7686290
    Abstract: Described herein is a system and device for singulating mail pieces during mail processing and sorting. A double inhibit mechanism, mounted opposite a feed belt assembly and having at least two degrees of freedom at its downstream end, can maintain contact with mail in the mail path while separating overlapping mail pieces and allowing only single pieces to pass thereby.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 30, 2010
    Assignee: United States Postal Service
    Inventor: Thomas C. Potter
  • Patent number: 7635124
    Abstract: A timed feeder for feeding corrugated boards to nip rolls of a box finishing machine. A feed member is raised to the feed path to engage and drive a board to the nip rolls and then lowered away from the feed path until the next cycle. An indexing drive mechanism, driven by a computer-controlled servo motor, activates the feed member and has a feed phase when it drives the board to the nip rolls, and a dwell phase when the feed member is away from the feed path and the output shaft of the indexing mechanism is at zero velocity. During the feed phase, the output shaft of the indexing mechanism accelerates the feed member and the board beyond the nip roll velocity and then decelerates them to the nip roll velocity at the point where the board enters the nip rolls.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 22, 2009
    Assignee: Sun Automation, Inc.
    Inventor: Louis M. Sardella
  • Patent number: 7624978
    Abstract: A sheet feeder having a stack hopper for holding a stack of sheets, and feed belts for advancing the bottom-most sheet from the stack, is constructed to move at least one of the feed belts laterally toward and away from another of the feed belts while the belts are being driven. Preferably, side guides extend substantially to the end of the feeder, and extend both above and below the upper surface of belts to which they are adjacent. The belts extend between and around shafts of uniform diameter through the reach of lateral movement of the belts. The shafts are journaled in bearings mounted in such a way that they can be lifted out to change belts quickly and easily.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 1, 2009
    Inventor: James C. Kaiping
  • Patent number: 7549633
    Abstract: A sheet feeding apparatus includes sheet accommodating means for accommodating a sheet, the sheet accommodating means being detachably mountable to the apparatus; feeding means for feeding the sheet from the sheet accommodating means; press-contact means for press-contacting the sheet in the sheet accommodating means to the feeding means; a guiding member for guiding the sheet accommodating means such that sheet accommodated in the sheet accommodating means is not contacted to the feeding means when the sheet accommodating means is mounted to the apparatus; moving means for moving the guiding member to bring the sheet into contact to the feeding means after the sheet accommodating means is mounted to the apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 23, 2009
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Hitoshi Nishitani, Gen Kitamura
  • Publication number: 20090134564
    Abstract: A sheet feeder (1) having a stack hopper (9) for holding a stack of sheets (8), and feed belts (5, 6, 7) for advancing the bottom-most sheet from the stack, has traction belts (110, 111, 112) between the feed belts. The traction belts extend around a shaft (25) beneath the hopper and around a shaft (27) positioned intermediate the reach of the feed belts, a short distance short of separators (30, 31). The traction belts are preferably thicker than the feed belts and textured on their outer surface.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 16, 2006
    Publication date: May 28, 2009
    Inventor: James C. Kaiping
  • Publication number: 20090008863
    Abstract: A device for withdrawing flat items of mail from a decollating section includes conveyor belts, and guide rollers. The conveyor belts extend around guide rollers and act unilaterally upon upright items of mail. The guide rollers are individually mounted, and, at an exit of the decollating section, are rotatably disposed jointly with transfer rollers of an adjoining transfer region, which are driven independently of the conveyor belts on a common guide axle. On a side of the conveying path pressure rollers are provided at a level of the transfer rollers, which press the items against the transfer rollers. The pressure rollers are mounted pivotably at a locally fixed fulcrum, which is situated in withdrawal direction upstream thereof and laterally offset from a conveying channel, and in which rollers driven synchronously with the transfer rollers are rotatably mounted. Belts forming an inlet extend over the pressure rollers and the driven rollers.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 22, 2005
    Publication date: January 8, 2009
    Inventors: Michael Schwarzbauer, Oliver Kutzer
  • Publication number: 20080237971
    Abstract: A device for separating overlapping, flat items of mail in an upright position in a transport path has separating sections arranged in the transport path and having transport belts. A stationary retaining strip running over a length of all separating sections is attached on the transport path on a side opposite the transport belt and operates on the mail items with friction force. Pressure elements for pressing the retaining strip onto transported mail items are distributed over a length of the retaining strip. Each pressure element comprises a coupling lever, pressure rollers and an elastic belt loop. The belt loop is attached a back of the retaining strip, and guided via the pressure rollers on ends of the coupling lever running in longitudinal direction of the retaining strip. The coupling lever is displaceably supported on a pivot axis.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 27, 2006
    Publication date: October 2, 2008
    Applicant: SIEMENS AKTIENGESELLSCHAFT
    Inventor: Michael Schwarzbauer
  • Publication number: 20080099977
    Abstract: A singulating module/belt including a conveyor belt for moving a stack of sheet material toward a pair of take-away rollers in one direction and a singulation belt moving in an opposing direction for retarding the motion of the upper sheets of the stack. The singulation belt is characterized by a compliant face surface which separates sheet material without damaging or tearing the sheets during singulation. In the described embodiment, the cross section of the belt includes a plurality of grooves defining a plurality of longitudinal ribs therebetween. The ribs define a cumulative width dimension in contact with the sheet material which is within a range of between about 0.55 to about 0.85 of the width dimension of the belt. Furthermore, the height dimension of each rib is within a range of between about 0.20 to about 0.8 of the height dimension of the belt.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2006
    Publication date: May 1, 2008
    Inventors: James A. Salomon, James S. Hou, Jimmy Hai
  • Patent number: 7331576
    Abstract: A feeder device is provided, comprising a drive mechanism for driving a media unit in a feed direction, the media unit being provided from a stack of media units by a hopper including upstream and downstream hopper members. A directing member associated with the upstream hopper member engages the trailing edge of the media unit to direct the same to the drive mechanism, reduces an adhesive force between the media unit and remaining media units in the stack, and engages the trailing edge of one other media unit to direct the same toward the downstream hopper member and to partially support the weight of the remaining media units. A biased member urges the media unit against the drive mechanism, thereby increasing a driving force on the media unit, and prevents remaining media units from being fed to the receiving apparatus, also reducing the adhesive force. Associated methods are also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 3, 2004
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2008
    Assignee: ZIH Corp.
    Inventors: Joël Pelletier, Sylvain Zumbiehl, Olivier Boisdon
  • Patent number: 7168696
    Abstract: In order to provide an apparatus for separating flat parceled goods, comprising a driver device with at least one driver surface, which is driven such that the parceled goods can be carried along in a transporting direction by the at least one driver surface, and also comprising a separating device with at least one separating surface for the parceled goods, the separating surface being directed toward the at least one driver surface, which apparatus carries out a separating operation with a high degree of reliability, it is proposed that the separating device is driven such that the at least one separating surface moves, upon contact with a parceled goods article, in the opposite direction to the transporting direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2003
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2007
    Assignee: Interroll-Holding AG
    Inventor: Oliver Zattler
  • Patent number: 6978993
    Abstract: A method and device for facilitating the replacement of a worn out section of a friction roller in a friction feeder with another section. The roller is fixedly mounted on a shaft adjacent to the feeder nip. In operation, the shaft is restricted from turning by a locking mechanism. The locking mechanism comprises a locking member and a blocking surface. The shaft has an extended shaft section for slideably mounting the locking member, which has a polygonal outer circumference. When the locking member is located adjacent to the blocking surface, it is restricted from rotating. But when the locking member is slid away from the blocking surface, it can be rotated to cause the shaft to rotate, thereby moving another section of the frictional surface on the friction roller to replace the worn out section near the nip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2003
    Date of Patent: December 27, 2005
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventor: Bruce E Hurd
  • Patent number: 6971645
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a selection device for separating one by one, or singulating, the items of a stack of mail items, comprising a support surface, conveying means for driving these mail items over the support surface, a mobile presser plate cooperating with the conveying means in order to drive downstream a part of the mail items issuing from the stack of mail items to be separated and corresponding to a predetermined maximum thickness of mail items, and independent, individually mobile selection means for selecting a mail item from the mail items driven by the conveying means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 6, 2005
    Assignee: Neopost Industrie
    Inventors: Francis Coret, Romain Pillard
  • Patent number: 6932338
    Abstract: A friction sheet feeding machine having (i) a tray for holding a stack of sheets, (ii) a driven friction feed roller for contacting a downward facing major surface of a lowermost sheet in a stack retained within the tray and pulling the lowermost sheet in a machine direction from underneath the stack, (iii) a reversibly driven friction retard roller vertically spaced in parallel relationship above the friction feed roller for contacting a leading edge and any exposed upward facing major surface of a sheet immediately overly the lowermost sheet so as to retard advancement of the overlying sheet, (iv) a first motor operably connected to the friction feed roller for driving the friction feed roller, and (v) a second motor operably connected to the friction retard roller for driving the friction retard roller, wherein the first and second motors are operably associated such that the second motor is operational only when the first motor is operated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 23, 2005
    Assignee: Streamfeeder, LLC
    Inventors: William L. Popejoy, Perry D. Bergman
  • Patent number: 6929259
    Abstract: A duplicate let off prevention device for sheets includes a first exit guide, a second exit guide which is spaced from the first exit guide at a distance that is larger than the thickness of one sheet and is smaller than the thickness of two sheets, and a pre-exit guide which is movably located adjacent a sheet storing device. Stacked sheets are segregated in a wedge-like configuration as they contact the respective guides. A stopper can stop the sheets when the pre-exit guide moves. The pre-exit guide is biased to exert a force to assist in the segregation of the sheets.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2005
    Assignee: Asahi Seiko Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hiroshi Abe, Joji Iida
  • Patent number: 6866258
    Abstract: Two belt type singulators are used in apparatus which feeds and singulates stacked articles which have varying thickness and shape. The singulators form tandem, spaced apart singulator nips with a transport belt. Each singulator belt has a downwardly sloped underside and moves incrementally around its rollers over time, overcoming certain applied resistive forces. The singulator belt has intermittent contact with the transport belt, when articles are being processed, and there is a resultant scuffing of belts which helps remove debris. Preferably, on off the forces which resists singulator belt motion is created by having a singulator pair with upper rollers, which are rotationally coupled but which have different diameters. The upper ends of the singulator belts project into the hopper which holds the stack and aid in the feeding of articles toward the singulating nips.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 2003
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2005
    Inventor: Roman M. Golicz
  • Patent number: 6758468
    Abstract: A sheet feeder having a driving mechanism to release sheets of document from a stack out of an exit nip, one sheet at a time. A retard mechanism is used to prevent other sheets from being drawn out of the exit nip by the frictional force between the sheets. The retard mechanism has a frictional surface driven by a cylinder, which is allowed to rotate freely in only one direction to move the frictional surface against the editing direction of the released sheet. The driving mechanism is programmed to move backward in an intermittent manner to move the sheets in the bottom of the stack away from the exit nip so as to cause the cylinder to rotate in order to spread out the wear of the frictional surface. Preferably, the frictional surface has a plurality of cuts in a helical or partially helical pattern.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 25, 2002
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2004
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventors: Steven J. DaCunha, Gregory P. Skinger, Arthur H. DePol, Thomas P. Nash
  • Publication number: 20040080093
    Abstract: A sheet feeder having a driving mechanism to release sheets of document from a stack out of an exit nip, one sheet at a time. A retard mechanism is used to prevent other sheets from being drawn out of the exit nip by the frictional force between the sheets. The retard mechanism has a frictional surface driven by a cylinder, which is allowed to rotate freely in only one direction to move the frictional surface against the exiting direction of the released sheet. The driving mechanism is programmed to move backward in an intermittent manner to move the sheets in the bottom of the stack away from the exit nip so as to cause the cylinder to rotate in order to spread out the wear of the frictional surface. Preferably, the frictional surface has a plurality of cuts in a helical or partially helical pattern.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 25, 2002
    Publication date: April 29, 2004
    Applicant: Pitney Bowes Incorporated
    Inventors: Steven J. DaCunha, Gregory P. Skinger, Arthur H. DePol, Thomas P. Nash
  • Patent number: 6708970
    Abstract: A supply device for a machine working cardboard sheets. At least one conveying unit for the conveyance one by one of the sheets. A hold-down stop for preventing conveyance of a pile of the sheets above the conveying unit while permitting conveyance of the bottom sheet. A plurality of rising units at the conveying unit, the raising units being alternatively moveable by pivoting between an upraised position above the upper level of the conveying unit, and a lowered position at the highest aligned with that upper level. Each rising unit is connected to a programmable control unit in order to provide a single command respectively for each one of the rising units. An adjustable height wear surface shoe on each rising unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2002
    Date of Patent: March 23, 2004
    Assignee: Bobst S.A.
    Inventors: Roberto Valterio, Valery Naula
  • Patent number: 6698748
    Abstract: An improved hopper and singulating/feed assembly for a utilization device, such as an inserter, that feeds sheet-like materials from a hopper feed stack that reduces the various geometrical and physical problems that lead to jams, misfeeds and failures to properly singulate the stack is provided. A hopper reduces the pressure on the bottom sheets of the stack by providing a parallel wedge structure at the stack base. This wedge structure also helps to drive bottom sheets successively forward toward a front face so as to further break frictional and adhesive contact between sheets at the bottom of the stack. Hopper side guides with integral angled shelves engage front side edges of the stack and allow easier singulation of respective bottom sheets. Likewise a fixed sucker block assembly, which seats a suction cup in a rotating base with a surrounding planar block face and an integral fulcrum edge improves the separation of the bottom sheet from the overlying stack.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 2, 2004
    Inventor: H. W. Crowley
  • Publication number: 20040012137
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a simplified mechanism for feeding and advancing popcorn bags or other receptacles for use in food or consumable filling applications, such as microwave popcorn to downstream processing stations. More specifically, the present invention includes the provision of a vacuum to draw a bag into operative association with a moving belt in order to advance the bags from a stack or supply.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 22, 2002
    Publication date: January 22, 2004
    Inventor: Roy F. Zubrod