With Use Of Optical Or Transparent (e.g., Viewing) Means Patents (Class 72/37)
  • Patent number: 11458520
    Abstract: A bender tool measuring system includes a conduit bender, a bent piece of conduit, and a measurement apparatus coupled to the conduit. The conduit bender includes a bender head comprising a hook and a handle coupled to and extending from the bender head. The measurement apparatus is configured to project an optical projection onto the handle of the conduit bender, and the location of the optical projection on the length of the handle indicates the position of the bent piece of conduit in relation to the bender head.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2020
    Date of Patent: October 4, 2022
    Inventor: Travis Heairld
  • Patent number: 11385055
    Abstract: Various aspects of a laser level interfacing with a modular storage system are shown. The laser level couples to a storage unit and/or a stand that itself couples to the storage unit. The stand extends past the front of the storage unit and permits the laser level to emit line in the downward direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 2020
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2022
    Assignee: Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation
    Inventor: Christopher R. Millane
  • Patent number: 9259773
    Abstract: Described is a procedure for bending a sheet of sheet metal on a panel bender machine wherein upon bending the sheet of metal sheet a first software (BE) for machine control transmits to a second software (VS) for management of a TV camera (17), positioned in alignment with the bending line, the data relating to the nominal bending angle, the bending length, the distance of the bent edge from the center line of the panel bender and the thickness of the metal sheet. The second software (VS) acquires an image of the bent metal sheet, identifies the spatial position of the straight line corresponding to the bent edge of the sheet of sheet metal and then calculates its geometric coordinates in accordance with a preset referencing system, and supplies to the first software (BE) the value of the angle of the bend performed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 16, 2016
    Assignee: FINN-POWER ITALIA S.R.L.
    Inventor: Andrea Frigo
  • Patent number: 9003846
    Abstract: Measuring sheet material flatness includes projecting a bright and dark pattern made up of bright parts and dark parts onto a sheet material surface travelling in a lengthwise direction, picking up an image of pattern with image pickup device to acquire a pattern image, with the pickup device having a field of view larger than a sheet material width. The acquired pattern image is analyzed, wherein a pattern in which a bright part is disposed at a predetermined set pitch respectively in longitudinal and lateral directions is formed by an LED light at a predetermined pitch respectively in the longitudinal and lateral directions. The pattern is projected onto the surface such that the longitudinal direction of the pattern lies along a lengthwise direction of the sheet material, and the lateral direction of the pattern lies along a width direction of the sheet material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 14, 2015
    Assignee: Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation
    Inventors: Yoshito Isei, Tomoya Kato, Masahiro Osugi, Hideyuki Takahashi
  • Publication number: 20150033813
    Abstract: A pipe bending apparatus has a head portion, an elongated handle portion attached to a bottom section of the head portion, and a laser member adapted to attach to a pipe and be spaced a predetermined distance away from the head and handle portions, wherein the head portion includes a curved elongated channel having two side walls forming a channel interior, a channel exterior, and an open channel top, the head portion further including an end section formed on a distal front end thereof, such that the channel and the end section are formed and adapted to hold a pipe around a substantial portion of its diameter, the two side walls of the channel have a series of spaced matching pairs of holes, wherein each of the matching pair of holes are adapted to receive and hold a blocking pin therein.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 4, 2013
    Publication date: February 5, 2015
    Inventor: Michel LECLERC
  • Patent number: 8720243
    Abstract: The invention describes a switching device which can be variably positioned (45), in particular a foot switch (47), which is connected, preferably wirelessly, to a control device (46) optionally co-operating with a production unit (1), in particular a press brake (2), for transmitting signals and/or data. A positioning system (50) is provided as a means of changing the position when necessary, which comprises at least a detection unit (51) and a drive system (52) in the form of a bogie provided with a drive mechanism and at least one drive member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2014
    Assignee: Trumpf Maschinen Austria GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventor: Gerhard Sperrer
  • Publication number: 20140076015
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for bending or shaping orthodontic archwires or other medical devices into a complex, patient individual shape is described. The apparatus comprises of two moveable, compact, manipulators with, in total, at least three revolute joints defining three rotation axes and at least three prismatic joints defining at least three translation axes. Gripping tools are provided on the manipulators. The two manipulators are arranged to allow a relative movement in six degrees of freedom. A reduced complexity embodiment is also described having only one or two revolute joints.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 18, 2012
    Publication date: March 20, 2014
    Inventors: Friedrich Riemeier, Werner Butscher, Frank Witte, Christoph Radinger, Andrew Cordell, Rohit Sachdeva
  • Patent number: 8621908
    Abstract: A method and a device for determining a quality of a metallic surface of a metallic substrate, for example a steel or steel alloy substrate, are provided. The device includes a mould, a sheet holder and a die, with which the metallic substrate is formed to produce a drawn test surface. The method and device are used to test the quality of the metallic surface of a metallic coating with a view to a later utilization, especially with a view to a later forming, wherein the metallic substrate is formed at least in-an area of a test surface, wherein a main and an additional shape change of the metallic substrate in the area of the test surface assume predetermined values that are related to the later utilization of the metallic substrate, and wherein the quality of the metallic surface is tested on the test surface after forming.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 21, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 7, 2014
    Assignee: ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG
    Inventors: Andreas Birkenstock, Peter Heidbüchel, Michael Linnepe
  • Patent number: 8459073
    Abstract: A method for measuring flatness of a sheet material in which a light and dark pattern composed by a light portion and a dark portion is projected onto a surface of the sheet material running in a longitudinal direction, a pattern image is acquired by photographing the light and dark pattern by an image pickup device having an image pickup visual field larger than a width of the sheet material, and the flatness of the sheet material is measured by analyzing the acquired pattern image. A staggered pattern is used for the projecting step and for light to be specularly reflected for receipt by the image pickup device. Calculating the flatness also includes steps of setting a shape measurement line, averaging picture element concentrations, calculating a distribution of the concentrations, and calculating the flatness based on surface shape using the distribution.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 11, 2013
    Assignee: Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation
    Inventors: Yoshito Isei, Tomoya Kato, Masahiro Osugi
  • Patent number: 8296949
    Abstract: An apparatus for designing a tubing configuration comprising modules that receive tube design input, interpret a tube design input, calculate a final tube design, and display a final tube design. The tube design input may include point locations, bend criteria and end conditions, among others. The apparatus may further include modules that determine whether the tube design input exceeds a complexity threshold, comprises a minimum set of information, and comprises a conflicting or erroneous design. The apparatus may further include modules that determine and optimize the manufacturing cost as well as determine the manufacturability of the tube. The apparatus may further include modules that store operational challenges corresponding to emissions reduction features and secondary components.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 29, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2012
    Assignee: Cummins Filtration IP, Inc.
    Inventors: John W. Clevenger, Donald A. Gibson, David Sarcona, Michael J. Senetar
  • Patent number: 8225635
    Abstract: Disclosed is a method for making a bicycle pedal, comprising the following steps: (A) cutting, in which an elongate metal plate is formed by pressing and two coupling holes are formed through the plate; (B) bending, in which the metal plate is bent to have the opposite ends jointed to each other, forming a circumferentially enclosed hollow pedal frame with the two coupling holes concentrically located and spaced from and opposing each other; and (C) welding, in which a collar is mounted outside the pedal frame concentric with respect to each of the coupling holes through welding to provide a sufficient contact area for rotatably receiving and supporting a spindle therein, whereby the pedal frame is rotatable about the spindle for pedaling operation of a bicycle. This method overcomes the various drawbacks occurring in metal-cast or plastic injection-molded bicycle pedals, providing economic advantages for high-mix low-volume productions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 24, 2012
    Inventor: Lopin Wang
  • Patent number: 8104322
    Abstract: The method according to the invention for working in pressing dies using marking paint wherein a fluorescent marking paint is used. This enables the operator in the manual working in of pressing dies to identify the painted tool surface without error and error-free detection of the tool surface occupied by marking paint is also possible by means of suitable devices (camera) for working-in of the pressing die which is done more or less automated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2008
    Date of Patent: January 31, 2012
    Assignee: Audi AG
    Inventors: Ing. Matthias Kerschner, Josef Hollerbach
  • Patent number: 7971461
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method for manufacturing a metal strip (1), in which the metal strip (1) is guided over a number of rolls (2, 3, 4, 5) under such a strip stress (S), and is moved in a conveying direction (F), that it is largely flat at least between two rolls (2, 3). In order for it to be possible to inspect the strip in a simple and space-saving way, the invention provides for the inner tensile stresses which act in the metal strip (1) which is largely flat under tensile stress between the at least two rolls (2, 3), to be made optically visible and for the tensile stresses or tensile stress differences which are determined in this way to be utilized during the manufacture of the metal strip (1). Furthermore, the invention relates to an apparatus for manufacturing a metal strip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 19, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 5, 2011
    Assignee: SMS Demag AG
    Inventor: Wolfgang Denker
  • Patent number: 7963137
    Abstract: The invention relates to an apparatus, in particular to a bending apparatus, including at least one movable apparatus part; an operating device for the operation of the apparatus, with at least one first signal for the actuation of the apparatus and one second signal for the stopping of the apparatus being able to be triggered via the operating device; a protection device for the monitoring of a protected zone of the apparatus; and a device for the selective adaptation of the protected zone before the actuation of the apparatus, with the device for the adaptation of the protected zone being able to be acted on by means of a third signal of the operating device. Alternatively, the device for the selective adaptation of the protected zone can include a voice input device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 8, 2004
    Date of Patent: June 21, 2011
    Assignee: Sick AG
    Inventors: Ingolf Braune, Heiko Kahle
  • Publication number: 20110138869
    Abstract: The invention describes a bending press (1), in particular a press brake (2), with a stationary bottom press beam (12) or press table (73) and a top press beam (10) which can be displaced relative to the bottom press beam (12) or press table (73) by means of a displacement drive (11). The bottom press beam (12) or press table (73) or a machine table or machine frame (13) supporting the bottom press beam (12) has at least one recess (5) affording foot room (6)) for an operator on a control side (3) of the bending press (1).
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 29, 2009
    Publication date: June 16, 2011
    Applicant: TRUMPF MASCHINEN AUSTRIA GMBH & CO. KG.
    Inventors: Thomas Reiter, Hermann Allerstorfer
  • Patent number: 7954353
    Abstract: A method and a device for determining a quality of a metallic surface of a metallic substrate, for example a steel or steel alloy substrate, are provided. The device includes a mould, a sheet holder and a die, with which the metallic substrate is formed to produce a drawn test surface. The method and device are used to test the quality of the metallic surface of a metallic coating with a view to a later utilization, especially with a view to a later forming, wherein the metallic substrate is formed at least in-an area of a test surface, wherein a main and an additional shape change of the metallic substrate in the area of the test surface assume predetermined values that are related to the later utilization of the metallic substrate, and wherein the quality of the metallic surface is tested on the test surface after forming.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 7, 2011
    Assignee: ThyssenKrupp Steel AG
    Inventors: Andreas Birkenstock, Peter Heidbüchel, Michael Linnepe
  • Patent number: 7900495
    Abstract: A powered conduit bending tool comprises a portable drive housing including a handle and having a powered drive gear. A bracket is secured to the housing defining a pivot connection spaced from the drive gear. A guide is operatively secured to the housing. A platform is pivotally connected to the bracket at the pivot connection and includes a driven gear operatively engaging the drive gear to controllably pivot the platform. A shoe is removably mountable to the platform and comprises a first bender defining a downwardly opening arcuate channel selectively positionable proximate the guide. A hook is proximate one end of the bender for engaging a conduit received in the channel. In use, the guide supports a conduit engaged by the hook and pivotal movement of the shoe driven by the platform deforms the conduit as it passes by the guide.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 6, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 8, 2011
    Assignee: Huskie Tools, Inc.
    Inventor: Joseph S. Latoria
  • Patent number: 7886565
    Abstract: A bending apparatus for long workpieces, especially tubes, to form a curved section extending between two bend end points (A, B) on the tube wherein the curved section is located about a center bend point X, distanced from a reference position (P) by a predetermined distance (L) extending along a tube, wherein the bending apparatus includes a bending segment rotatable about a pivotal axis so that the tube is positioned on a semicircular scale with a starting zero point of 0° to mark the start of the curved section at one of the bend end points (A, B), which point is designated as a bending-start point, characterized, in that the apparatus has a bend length-selector having at least one measurement edge the measurement edge aligning with the center bend point (X) to automatically place the tube at the bending-start point and at the 0° mark of the bending segment upon the placement of the tube in the bending apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 2006
    Date of Patent: February 15, 2011
    Inventors: Johann Hainzinger, Johann Niedermeier
  • Publication number: 20100095722
    Abstract: A hot-rolling line, a method for photographing the entire width of a hot-rolled metal strip, a method for recording the photographic result of the entire width, a method for appropriately performing quality assurance, and a method for producing a hot-rolled metal strip using them, provide proper quality assurance for delivering a product to a customer. A hot-rolling line includes a near-infrared camera arranged to photograph an entire width of a hot-rolled metal strip on an entry side of a coiler of the hot-rolling line.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 21, 2008
    Publication date: April 22, 2010
    Applicant: JFE STEEL CORPORATION
    Inventors: Nobuo Nishiura, Takayuki Murata, Koji Yanagino, Kazuhiro Nitta, Hiroshi Sawada
  • Publication number: 20100058824
    Abstract: It is an object of the present invention to provide a monitoring apparatus and the like of seamless pipe or tube production conditions which enable to quickly correct production conditions during operating the manufacturing facilities of a seamless pipe or tube.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 6, 2007
    Publication date: March 11, 2010
    Inventor: Hiroyuki Iwamoto
  • Publication number: 20090255306
    Abstract: In a method and a device for creating a symbol in a workpiece surface via stamping (scoring or plastic forming under compressive conditions); the resultant stamping depth is measured and/or regulated constantly by using a distance sensor which is mounted on the stamping needle and is movable therewith. The stamping needle is placed on the workpiece surface before stamping is begun, thereby resulting in a first distance between the distance sensor and the workpiece surface. A second distance between the distance sensor and the workpiece surface is obtained during the subsequent stamping procedure, and when the stamping needle is pressed into the workpiece surface. The stamping depth results from the difference of the two distances.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 9, 2009
    Publication date: October 15, 2009
    Inventors: Wilfried Werner, Senel Efe OK
  • Patent number: 7578156
    Abstract: A potentially dangerous machine is secured to protect against injuries and has first and second tool parts that define an opening gap between them. At least the first tool part is movable relative to the second tool part in a movement direction during an operating cycle for deforming a workpiece between them by reducing a size of the opening gap in the movement direction. The protected zone precedes the first tool part and extends over at least a portion of the opening gap in the direction of relative movement. The protected zone is monitored with an optoelectronic sensor, and a danger signal is generated in response to a breach of the protected zone. When the size of the opening gap in the movement direction becomes smaller than the protected zone, the size of the protected zone is correspondingly reduced until during subsequent closing movements of the first tool part substantially the entire opening gap is within the protected zone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 25, 2009
    Assignee: Sick AG
    Inventors: Ingolf Braune, Roland Bergbach, Joerg Grabinger
  • Patent number: 7489820
    Abstract: The invention relates to a device for producing a pattern on a surface for measuring, using a projector and a slide. The invention also relates to various advantageous embodiments of the measuring system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 1999
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2009
    Assignee: VDEh-Betriebsforschungsinstitut GmbH
    Inventors: Ulrich Muller, Detlef Winter, Detlef Sonnenschein, Rudolf Stockmeyer, Gustav Peuker
  • Patent number: 7448241
    Abstract: A safety system for use with a machine having a moving tool arranged to move through a known path of movement. The safety system is arranged to detect the presence of an obstruction in a region (20) around a portion of said path deemed to be hazardous. The safety system is characterised by comprising a light emitting means (16), a light receiving means (18) and a processing and control means. The light emitting means (16) is arranged to emit light generally parallel to the path of movement of the tool such that the region (20) is illuminated. The light receiving means (18) is arranged to receive light from the light emitting means (16) which has passed through the region (20).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 11, 2008
    Inventor: Kevin S. Davies
  • Publication number: 20080202182
    Abstract: A thin walled body is deformed in a process in which the body is gripped securely in a holding station and, whilst gripped in the holding station, tooling engages to deform the peripheral wall of the body at a predetermined wall zone. The tooling is provided at a tooling station which is adjacent the holding station during deformation. The predetermined wall zone is co-aligned with the tooling by rotation of the body about an axis prior to securing at the holding station.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 2, 2008
    Publication date: August 28, 2008
    Inventors: Santiago Garcia Campo, Juan Saiz Goiria
  • Patent number: 7201032
    Abstract: A metal sheet-receiving system for receiving parts and feeding a metal sheet-folding machine, particularly a folding press comprising at least one manipulator for seizing and moving metal sheet parts with a gripper head fitted with gripping means; an electronic controlling device for controlling the movements of the manipulator; as well as a measuring system for determining the position of the metal sheet parts. The measuring system is formed by an optoelectronic measuring device, particularly an image acquisition means, and a transillumination platform.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2005
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2007
    Assignee: Trumpf Maschinen Austria GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventor: Dieter Pfitzner
  • Patent number: 7076980
    Abstract: A robotic bending apparatus for bending archwires and other types of elongate, bendable medical devices into a desired configuration includes a first gripping tool and a moveable gripping tool. The first gripping tool can be either fixed with respect to a base or table for the robot or positioned at the end of robot am. The moveable gripping tool is mounted to the end of a moveable robot arm having a proximal portion also mounted to the base. The robot preferably comprises a six axis bending robot, in which the distal end of the moveable arm can move relative to the fixed gripping tool about three translational axes and three rotational axes. The gripping tools preferably incorporate force sensors which are used to determine overbends needed to get the desired final shape of the archwire. The robot may also include a resistive heating system in which current flows through the wire while the wire is held in a bent condition to heat the wire and thereby retain the bent shape of the wire.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 28, 2004
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2006
    Assignee: OraMetrix, Inc.
    Inventors: Werner Butscher, Friedrich Riemeier, Rüdger Rubbert, Thomas Weise, Rohit Sachdeva
  • Patent number: 7055355
    Abstract: Method and device for bending a portion of an element in a bending machine (12) comprising a bending assembly (14), a supporting plane (18) and an electronic processing unit (32), wherein the bending process is filmed and displayed on a screen (36). The portion (24) is bent with a first movement of the bending assembly (14) to make a first bend of a nominal value. By means of reference indicator elements an angle of deviation is determined and the portion is again bent with a new movement of the bending assembly (14), taking into account the angle of deviation. All movements of the bending assembly (14) are acquired by a position transducer (15) and recorded by the electronic processing unit (32) in order to have a global parameter for obtaining an angle which corresponds to the nominal value, and in order to use the global parameter in subsequent analogous or similar bends.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 10, 2003
    Date of Patent: June 6, 2006
    Inventor: Antonio Codatto
  • Patent number: 7021097
    Abstract: A method for adjusting the static attitude of a head suspension by scanning a region of the head suspension with a laser. A head suspension having a gimbal region is provided that permits a head slider attached thereto to gimbal about pitch and roll axes in response to fluctuations in an air bearing over which the head slider flies. One or more predetermined regions of the head suspension are irradiated by a laser beam by scanning the laser beam across the head suspension regions to affect the static attitude of the head suspension. In a preferred embodiment, a plurality of parallel spaced apart lines are scanned on the leaf spring arms of a flexure with the laser to correct pitch errors in static attitude, and a plurality of parallel spaced apart lines are scanned with the laser in the cross section attached to the leaf spring arms to correct roll errors in static attitude. One or both sides of the head suspension can be scanned to create a desired pitch and/or roll correction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2004
    Date of Patent: April 4, 2006
    Assignee: Hutchinson Technology Incorporated
    Inventors: Timothy Raymond Ubl, Senthil Balasubramaniam, Hryhory T. Koba
  • Patent number: 7010949
    Abstract: An apparatus for forming an optical aperture comprises an object having a tip with a pointed end. Stoppers are disposed adjacent the tip. A pressing body applies a loading force to press the pointed end of the tip and at least a part of each of the stoppers to form an optical aperture at the pointed end of the tip. A load controller controls the loading force applied by the loader.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 14, 2006
    Assignee: Seiko Instruments Inc.
    Inventors: Manabu Oumi, Susumu Ichihara, Takashi Niwa, Kenji Kato, Yoko Shinohara, Hidetaka Maeda, Nobuyuki Kasama, Yasuyuki Mitsuoka
  • Patent number: 6954679
    Abstract: A shape data specifies the shape of an elongated product within an overall coordinate system. Local coordinate systems are defined on respective cross-sections of the elongated product in the overall coordinate system. The local coordinate system is designed to represent a stable die of a bending apparatus. The images of the elongated product protruding forward from the stable die within the respective local coordinate systems serve to specify the position of a movable die of the bending apparatus. The specified position reflects the deformation induced in the elongated product between the stable and movable dies. An ideal movement amount of the movable die can be determined based on the determined positions within the local coordinate systems. The determined movement amount can be utilized to prepare the control data for the bending apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 11, 2005
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Kenzo Takeda, Manabu Maruyama, Hideo Meguri, Yoshihiro Kageyama
  • Patent number: 6945083
    Abstract: The eccentricity of a hollow billet is measured at the outlet of an inclined-roll rolling mill by launching an ultrasonic pulse into the billet from a laser of a measuring device and measuring the transit time of an echo pulse also utilizing a laser and an optical analyzer. The measuring device is moved, during travel of the hollow billet along a path from the rolling mill linearly into the direction of travel or angularly around the hollow billet to eliminate the effect of the internal helical formation of the eccentricity on the measurements. The wall thickness measurements are evaluated by a computer and subjected to Fourier analysis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 3, 2003
    Date of Patent: September 20, 2005
    Assignee: SMS Meer GmbH
    Inventors: Martin Sauerland, Karl Heinz Häusler
  • Patent number: 6771363
    Abstract: A method for determining the bending angle of a sheet which has been bent along a bending line, by generating at least one light beam, using these beams to project two points or line segments onto a part of the sheet to be checked which lies on one side of the bending line. The beams form an angle of incidence which is known in advance with the bending line of the sheet. These points or line segments are imaged onto receiving means and the distance between the points or line segments is determined, which have been projected onto the receiving means. The beams lie in two parallel detection planes, the distance between which is known. The bending angle is determined from the distance between the projected points, the known angles of incidence of the beams and the known distance between the detection planes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 3, 2004
    Assignee: Best Quality B.V.
    Inventor: Max Van Den Berg
  • Patent number: 6755064
    Abstract: A robotic bending apparatus for bending archwires and other types of elongate, bendable medical devices into a desired configuration includes a first gripping tool and a moveable gripping tool. The first gripping tool can be either fixed with respect to a base or table for the robot or positioned at the end of robot am. The moveable gripping tool is mounted to the end of a moveable robot arm having a proximal portion also mounted to the base. The robot preferably comprises a six axis bending robot, in which the distal end of the moveable arm can move relative to the fixed gripping tool about three translational axes and three rotational axes. The gripping tools preferably incorporate force sensors which are used to determine overbends needed to get the desired final shape of the archwire. The robot may also include a resistive heating system in which current flows through the wire while the wire is held in a bent condition to heat the wire and thereby retain the bent shape of the wire.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 2002
    Date of Patent: June 29, 2004
    Assignee: OraMetrix, Inc.
    Inventors: Werner Butscher, Friedrich Riemeier, Rüdger Rubbert, Thomas Weise, Rohit Sachdeva
  • Patent number: 6644080
    Abstract: To improve the speed with which a worksheet is positioned in a press brake, and to further eliminate the need for conventional moving back gauge systems, the present invention replaces the conventional back gauge mechanical system with sensors that non-contactedly determine the positioning of the worksheet, with reference to the bending tools. The thus sensed worksheet position is compared with the desired worksheet location preprogrammed into the CNC controller. Any deviation between the sensed, or the actual worksheet position, with the desired worksheet position for each bend of the worksheet is compensated by further moving the worksheet, until there no longer is any discrepancy between the actual and the preprogrammed desired locations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 11, 2003
    Assignee: Finn-Power International, Inc.
    Inventor: Mikko Lindstrom
  • Patent number: 6604395
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for bending probe pins that is semi-automated and uses machine vision to eliminate human error.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 12, 2003
    Assignee: St Assembly Test Services Ltd.
    Inventor: Chong Meng Lee
  • Patent number: 6536250
    Abstract: A dent removal system is provided having a portable vacuum chamber head and a shaper vacuum roller coupled to a vacuum source. The vacuum chamber head has a center see-through window for aligning the head over a dented work surface, a template of desired surface shape and a matrix of closely-spaced standoff pins to communicate the template shape to the work surface while allowing passage of vacuum to the dent. A method is provided for removing dents in sheet metal surfaces using the dent removal system. The vacuum chamber head is positioned over the dented work surface and sealed. The work surface is excited with vibrational energy. Within the vacuum chamber head, force is applied to the template face to hold the template in fixed relation to the work surface. The template shape is transmitted to the work surface via the matrix of standoff pins.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2000
    Date of Patent: March 25, 2003
    Assignee: Dent Defyer, Inc.
    Inventor: Donald Paul Borchert
  • Patent number: 6382008
    Abstract: The invention concerns a process for checking the quality of formings executed by a machine for forming tube ends, according to which the forming machine is equipped with a force transducer (33) which is capable of measuring the reactive axial force exerted by the tube on the tool (9a) in a forming pass and, for each forming, in a preliminary learning phase, the maximum reactive axial force exerted by the tube on the tool (9a) is measured, the quality of the executed forming is verified in conventional manner and the value of the maximum reactive axial force obtained in a forming of a quality meeting the required conditions is recorded, then, in each forming pass, the maximum reactive axial force exerted by the tube on the tool (9a) is measured, the value of the said maximum axial force is compared with the recorded reference value and the forming is validated if the measured maximum axial force corresponds to the reference force with a predetermined tolerance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 3, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2002
    Assignee: Financiere Robolix
    Inventor: Philippe Jaubert
  • Patent number: 6377871
    Abstract: An integrated die cast system is provided comprising a die casting machine, a servo-controlled ladle, a servo-controlled sprayer, a pick and place robot, an integrated controller, and a programming pendant. The die casting machine includes a die casting machine controller. The servo-controlled ladle includes a molten material ladle and a servo-motor arranged to cause the ladle to transfer molten material to an injection chamber of the die casting machine. The servo-controlled sprayer includes a sprayer assembly and a servo-motor arranged to orient the sprayer assembly proximate a die cavity of the die casting machine. The pick and place robot is arranged to access a die cavity of the die casting machine. The integrated controller is in communication with the die-casting machine controller, the servo-controlled ladle, the servo-controlled sprayer, and the pick and place robot.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 26, 2000
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2002
    Assignee: Motoman, Inc.
    Inventors: William H. DeCamp, Alan G. Livingston, Scott D. Colwell
  • Patent number: 6349581
    Abstract: Rolling stock is transported in a transporting device from a front roll stand to a rear roll stand. Between the roll stands, the rolling stock carries out an oscillation transverse to the transporting direction. At least one characteristic property, amplitude or frequency, of the oscillation is determined quantitatively and, from this determination, a tension or compression, existing in the rolling stock between the roll stands is determined. One of the roll stands is readjusted in such a manner, that a desired tension is built up in the rolling stock between the roll stands.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 2000
    Date of Patent: February 26, 2002
    Assignee: SMS Schloemann-Siemag AG
    Inventors: Otmar Palzer, Hubert Müller, Ulrich Svejkovsky
  • Patent number: 6286349
    Abstract: The invention relates to a flatness measurement and control system for metal strip, which makes it possible to obtain improved strip or coil quality by a simple and effective measurement of departures from flatness and to control the finishing parameters through the evaluation of a line pattern on the strip surface or on the end face of a coil as it is coiled.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 1999
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2001
    Assignees: Betriebsforschungsinstitut VDEh-Institut fur angewandte Forschung GmbH, Gesellschaft fur Optische Messtechnik GmbH, Krupp-Hoesch-Stahl AG
    Inventors: Ulrich Müller, Gustav Peuker, Detlef Sonnenschein, Detlef Winter, Michael Degner, Gerd Thiemann
  • Patent number: 6253587
    Abstract: The invention relates to a device and method for regulating the compressing of metal tubing (20) having inner-lying beam wave guides (8) by means of a roll straightening passage (10a, 10b) comprising a feeding device (36, 36′) of the rollers (12-16) with regard to the angle of wrap (A1, A2). The metal tubing (20) is unwound by a feed roller (11) in front of the roll straightening passage delivery roller (11′) after said roll straightening passage (10a, 10b). According to the invention, a measuring device (34) for determining the velocity (v1, v2) of the metal tubing (20) is arranged in front of and behind each roll straightening passage (10a, 10b). The measuring device (30) can determine the difference in velocity in front of and behind the roll straightening passage and the feeding device (36, 36′) can be adjusted independently of the difference in velocity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2001
    Assignee: NKT Cables GmbH
    Inventors: Wolfgang Nolden, Herward Graning
  • Patent number: 6244086
    Abstract: An alignment device to assist a user in the functional application of a hand tool. The hand tool can take a variety of forms but is preferably a dent removal tool. The alignment device is preferably retrofitable onto existing hand tools by use of a base bracket that mounts onto the handle or shank of the tool. A sight device is mounted on the device and includes a multiple degree of freedom joint. This joint allows the user to easily and quickly align the sight device to locate the work piece. The work piece can then be placed in a desired position even positioned such that it is obscured from the sight of the user. Positioning the work piece of a dent removal tool behind the opaque surface of dented sheet metal structure is a typical application. The alignment device allows the user to quickly and accurately position the work piece, behind the surface, thereby increasing the efficiency of the user.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2001
    Assignee: Ultra Dent Tools
    Inventors: Steven L. Hopf, James Scheltens
  • Patent number: 6244085
    Abstract: A pressing tool for connecting pipe-shaped work pieces wherein the pressing tool has a fork-shaped receiver and a clamping tool interchangeably held in the receiver by a connecting bolt. The pressing tool has two clamping jaws which can be moved toward each other. A drive motor operates the clamping tool. The connecting bolt can be pushed through bores in the fork-shaped receiver and in the clamping tool, for maintaining the clamping tool in an exchangeable position within the fork-shaped receiver. A contactless electronic tracing device is arranged in the fork-shaped receiver, which determines a relative position of the clamping jaws in relation to the fork-shaped receiver. The contactless electronic tracing device also passes a signal to either an optical warning device or an acoustical warning device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 7, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2001
    Assignee: Von Arx AG
    Inventor: Paul Dummermuth
  • Patent number: 6223573
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for operating a press, such as a forge or trim press, are directed at activating a ram in a press having a lower die and an upper die connected to a ram by heating a workpiece to a first temperature above an impact temperature. The workpiece then is placed on the lower die, monitored during chill down of the workpiece from the first temperature, and the ram actuated based upon the monitoring in a controlled manner to effect an impact of the upper die against the workpiece. The monitoring includes measuring a characteristic parameter of the workpiece and the actuating includes actuating the ram after a predetermined fixed value of the measured parameter is measured. The placing of the workpiece on the lower die is done manually in the preferred embodiment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 1999
    Date of Patent: May 1, 2001
    Assignee: General Electric COmpany
    Inventors: Sukhminder S. Grewal, Stephen R. Demichele, Richard L. Couture
  • Patent number: 6209371
    Abstract: An angle indicator is provided for use with a pipe bender and is adapted to be removably mounted to a handle of a pipe bender. The angle indicator includes a plate; a first wheel rotatably mounted to the plate and including a plurality of angle indicating marks evenly spaced about a periphery of the first wheel; a second wheel rotatably mounted to the plate concentrically with the first wheel; the second wheel being smaller in diameter than the first wheel and including a mark at a periphery of the second wheel, the mark being selectively alignable with one of the angle indicating marks of said first wheel; a bubble level mounted on the second wheel; a first lock to hold the first wheel in a desired rotational position; and a second lock to hold the second wheel in a desired rotational position. The use of two wheels allows for zeroing of the angle indicator and dialing in of the desired angle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2000
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2001
    Inventor: Ricky Guinn
  • Patent number: 6073471
    Abstract: A wire-crimping device detects if an electrical terminal is stuck to a crimper after crimping, thereby effectively eliminating deformed terminals. Electrical wire-crimping device (1) has a ram (42) slidably mounted to a housing (4). A reflection light sensor (60) is mounted to the housing (4), and a pathway (80) that communicates with a wire-crimping member (40) is located in the ram (42). If an electrical terminal (30) should stick to crimpers (50, 52) after crimping, and if the wire-crimping member (40) mounted to the ram (42) rises, a wire depressor (54) will also rise, and an upper end of the wire depressor (54) will block the pathway (80). As a result, the light emitted from the reflection light sensor (60) will be reflected and detected by a light sensor, and it will be electrically detected that a defective part has been produced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2000
    Assignee: The Whitaker Corporation
    Inventors: Shigeru Naka, Hiromi Tanaka
  • Patent number: 6073057
    Abstract: A computer-controllable bending machine is connected to a computer via its conventional control unit. The computer is equipped with an input keyboard adapted to the properties of a bending machine and a screen display for displaying a graphical surface which is capable of displaying the bending operation true to scale both in a programming mode and in an operating mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 6, 2000
    Assignee: Schechtl Maschinenbau GmbH
    Inventors: Franz Bauer, Alois Schechtl
  • Patent number: 6053960
    Abstract: A cored wire continuously formed by continuously inserting an extruded core inside a continuously roll formed sheath, the peripheral edges of the roll formed sheath joined by a continuous lock seam. Inspection of the partially formed lock seam at a designated process step serves to warn the user of malformed or defective lock seam portions in the finished cored wire.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 25, 2000
    Assignee: Minerals Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Phillip Ronald King, Richard Shaddinger Baum
  • Patent number: 6029485
    Abstract: A roller levelling machine for levelling a rolled section includes a section inlet for introducing the rolled section into the roller levelling machine and a plurality of bending rollers for levelling the rolled section. The roller levelling machine further includes at least one runout roller which is adjustable by an adjusting element for guiding the levelled rolled section. A position sensor device for determining the location of the rolled section is arranged following the runout roller at a predetermined distance from the runout roller. For transmitting the location, the position sensor device is connected to an adjusting control unit for the runout roller. The control unit is capable of determining from the determined location an adjusting signal for the adjusting element and transmitting the adjusting signal to the adjusting element. The adjusting element is configured to adjust the runout roller in accordance with the adjusting signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 1998
    Date of Patent: February 29, 2000
    Assignee: SMS Schloeman-Siemag Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventor: Bruno Bohmer