US 3585776 A
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United States Patent Gerrit Evert Euwe References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,232,186 2/l94l Piazzeet al. 3,041,804 7/1962 Eichom et al. 3,315,435 4/1967 Gunyou........................
Primary Examiner-Theron E. Condon Assistant Examiner-Neil Abrams  Filed Oct. 13,1969  Patented ,Inue22, 1971  Assignee Lever Brothers Company New York, NY.  Priority Nov. 15, I968  Netherlands Attorneys--Louis F. Kline, .lr., Melvin l-l. Kurtz and Edgar E.
ABSTRACT: In a machine for wrapping a slotted and scored flat box blank about a stack of articles such as packages, a stack is fed from an advancing row of articles on to a first tiltable platform in a horizontal position. A second tiltable platform to which a blank has been fed is swung upwardly to present the blank in a vertical plane to a side face of the stack in the first platform, and both platforms then tilt downwardly in unison to bring the blank back to the horizontal position with the stack supported on the blank. Folder arms operate to m n K D a a mm m M WITH A STACK 0F ARTICLES 7 Claims, 11 Drawing Figs.
 US. erect sidewall panels of the blank as the platforms swing downwardly, and the partly formed box and stack are then  Int. B65b 11/42 moved horizontally by a pusher flight, perpendicularly to the  Field of plane of tilting, past a top panel folder and past end flap gluers and folders.
PATENTEU JUH22 I971 SHEET 1 UF 5 mm W 2. m 8 N3 INVENTOR'.
GERRIT E ERT EUWE IS ATTORNEY PATENTEU JUH221E171 585.776
sum 2 UP 5 INVENTORI GERRIT EVERT EUWE IS ATTORNEY PATENTED JUH22 I971 SHEET 3 0F 5 INVENTOR:
GERRIT EVERT Euw BY, ia 1 V TTORNEY PATENTEUJUNZZIQH 3585776 SHEETMUFS INVENTORZ GERRIT EVERT EUWf "/HIS ATTORNEY PROCESS AND APPARATUS FOR MANUFACTURING A BOX COMPLETELY FILLED WITH A STACK OF ARTICLES The invention relates to a process for manufacturing a box which is completely filled with a stack of articles, in which a slotted and prescored box blank is folded around a stack of articles, as well as to an apparatus for carrying out this process and to a vbox manufactured according to this process and completely filled with a stack of articles.
The object of the invention is to provide a process of the type mentioned, in which the desired position of the stack of articles relative to the flat box blank is obtained in the simplest possible way and in which the blank is folded around the stack of articles with a minimum of separate movements. According to the invention this object is attained in that the panel of the flat box blank which forms the base panel of the box is brought into a vertical plane for engagement with the stack of articles, after which the assembly of box blank and stack of articles is tilted to bring the base panel into a horizontal plane, during which tilting movement the panels of the box blank forming the sidewall panels of the box are erected against the sides of the stack of articles. Finally, the panel of the box blank forming the top panel of the box is folded against the top surface of the stack of articles.
The layers of articles of which the stack is built up and which prior to tilting formed horizontal layers of the stack, form vertical layers of the stack after the tilting of the stack. However, as soon as the tilting movement of the stack of articles is stopped the layers of articles, and particularly those layers which before tilting formed the upper part of the stack, tend to topple. This toppling tendency is greater as the velocity of the tilting movement is increased.
The toppling of the layers of articles which at the end of the tilting movement form the end surfaces of the stack of articles can be prevented by folding inwards against the stack ends the end flaps of those panels which form the sidewalls of the box during the erection of said panels. Those end layers are thus supported by said end flaps and the process can be carried out at greater speed.
Preferably, the panel of the box blank which forms the top wall of the box is folded against the top surface of the stack of articles during the discharging of the partly folded box with the stack of articles in a direction transverse to the plane of tilting. By this measure a separate movement for folding this panel against the top surface of the stack of articles is eliminated. The end flaps of the top and bottom of the box can subsequently be closed in a similar way during the discharge movement of the box, the end flaps being provided with glue during the discharge of the box.
The apparatus according to the invention for carrying out the process comprises a first tiltable platform for receiving a stack of articles, and a slotted second tiltable platform for bring a flat box blank placed on it against a vertical stack of articles fed to the first tiltable platfonn, the drive mechanism of these platforms then tilting them together, with reverse tilting of the second platform, into a position in which the assembly of the stack upon the blank lies in a horizontal position on a slotted fixed support, and a set of folding members, located on both sides of the path of tilting for folding the parts of the blank protruding laterally beyond the stack against the stack sides during the tilting movement. Preferably, the first and the second tilting platforms are rotatable around a common shaft.
In one embodiment the two folding members for folding the parts of the box blank protruding laterally beyond the stack against the stack sides are constructed as arms which at or near their ends remote from the first tiltable platform are pivotal about an axis which is parallel to the pivotal axis of the first and the second tiltable platforms, and which during the simultaneous tilting movement of the two platforms pivot together from a position sloping downwards towards these platforms into a horizontal position. This ensures that the relevant panels of the box blank are folded very tightly against the sides of the stack by the folding arms, which not only prevents damaging of the articles during transport of the filled boxes but also involves a saving of box material and thus of storage space.
During their pivotal movement into the horizontal position, the folding arms preferably swing into and through the slots of the second tiltable platform at the moment when the plane containing the upper sides of the arms substantially coincides with the plane of the second tilting platform. As a result of this, contact between these folding arms and the panels of the box blank to be erected takes place simultaneously over the entire length of the arms, thus preventing damage to the panels. It is recommendable that the two arms are L-shaped and that each arms is also pivotal about a second axis at to the axis about which both arms pivot together, so that during the swinging movement of both folding arms around their first axis of rotation, each arm can pivot about its second axis inwardly towards the stack of articles. The result of this is that the erection of the side panels of the box blank can take place gradually, as the arms pivot with the relevant panels towards the stack of articles.
For folding the end flaps of these panels of the box blank which form the sidewalls of the box towards the end surfaces of the stack of articles during the pivotal movement of the arms into the horizontal position, the folding arms can be provided with folding elements rigidly connected to them. In this way the pivotal movement of the two arms around their common first axis of rotation, as wellas the inward pivoting of each arm around its own second axis of rotation, is also used for completely or partly closing the end flaps of those panels of the box blank which form the sidewalls of the erected box.
For folding against the top surface of the stack that part of the box blank which, after the erection of those panels of the blank which form the box sidewalls, protrudes above the stack, a conveyor member may be provided which moves the stack and the formed but still unclosed box in a direction perpendicular to the tilting plane of the tilting platforms and below a folding stop. This stop is preferably formed by one of the pivotal arms which folds the box blank against the sides of the stack, when these arms have been swung into their horizontal position.
Along the path of movement of the box by the conveyor member, means may be provided for applying glue on the end flaps of those panels forming the bottom and the top of the box, as well as means for closing these flaps.
An embodiment of the invention will now be described with reference to the drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a plan view of the apparatus;
FIG. 2 is a front view of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a sectional view along the line III-III of FIG. 2, in which for clarity the stack of articles is not shown;
FIGS. 4-9 diagrammatically illustrate the successive stages in the manufacture of a box completely filled with a stack of articles;
FIG. l0 diagrammatically shows the closing of the top of the formed box;
FIG. 11 diagrammatically shows the apparatus in perspective.
The frame of the apparatus shown in FIGS. 1-3 is built up of section beams and contains a magazine A for prescored and slotted flat box blanks l, a station B for folding a blank 1 around a stack 2 and a feeding device C which intermittently measures off a stack 2 of articles such as packages which are fed in a double row 3.
The feeding device C, which in the form shown is not an essential part of the present invention, consists of an L-shaped pivotal loader 4, which is moved by a guide 5 (FIGS. 4--9), consisting of a first set of parallel rods 6, which at one end at 7 (FIG. 2) are hingedly connected to the loader 4 and at their other end can pivot around a fixed hinge point 8, and of a second set of parallel rods 9, which at one end at 10 are hingedly connected to the loader 4 and at their other end at 11 are hingedly connected to an arm 12 of a two-armed lever 12, 13. The lever 12, 13 can rotate around a fixed hinge point 14, the position of the lever being determined by a cam disc 15, with which a roller attached to the end of the arm 13 is continuously in contact. The shape of the cam disc 15 is chosen in such a way that the loader 4 is pivotal from a position in which its rear part 16 is horizontal FlGS. l, 2 and 4) into a position in which said rear part 116 is vertical (FIG. 6), is stationary momentarily in the latter position, and is subsequently pivoted back into the starting position (FIG. 7). In this starting position the loader 4 is stationary for a period of time required by the front layer 17 of a double row of articles 3 to reach the foot part 18 of the loader (FIG. 9).
The double row of articles 3 advances over a feeding platform (not shown), of which the end nearest the loader 4 is slotted and through which fingers 28 of the slotted rear part 16 pass when the loader 4 begins its pivotal movement. The result of this is that from the leading end of the double row of articles 3 a stack 2, consisting of a certain quantity of articles is measured off, the support of which is gradually taken over by the foot part 18 of the loader 4 (FIG. 5), until the stack 2 only rests on the foot part (FIG. 6).
The mechanism for folding a flat box blank around the stack of articles supplied by the loader 4 consists of a first tiltable platform 19, which by means of a support arm 31 and a bush 67 attached to it is pivotal around a shaft 20 journaled in fixed bearing blocks 32, a second tiltable platform 21, and a set of folding members 22. The second tiltable platform 21 consists of a flat plate 23 carried by two section beams 24 (F IG. 1), the section beams 24 being attached to the shaft by means of bushes 25 located on both sides of the bush 67. The second tiltable platform 21 further consists of two arms 26, located on both sides of and at some distance from the plate 23 and in the same plane, which arms are rigidly attached to the shaft 20 by means of bushes 27.
The foot part 18 of the loader 4 is provided with slots, whereby during the pivotal movement the fingers 28 extend ing between these slots pass through slots 29 provided on the first tiltable platform 19 (FIG. 1). In this way the stack 2 at the end of the forward tilting movement of the loader 4 is transferred to the first tiltable platform 19 (FIG. 6), which is then in a horizontal position.
The two folding members 22 each consist of L-shaped arms, which from the downwardly inclined position shown in FIGS. 1, 2, 5, 6 and 7 can swing around an axis of rotation parallel to the shaft 20 into the horizontal position shown in FIGS. 3, 8 and 9. For this purpose the arms 22 are connected with a shaft 30, joumaled in fixed bearing blocks 35, which shaft is parallel to the shaft 20. The part 33 of each arm 22 is rigidly attached to a bush 34 which is freely pivotally journaled on a stub shaft, projecting perpendicularly from the shaft 30. The shafts on which the bushes 34 are supported, are rigidly attached to the shaft 30. During their swinging movement together into the horizontal position, each of the arms 22, 33 can also pivot around the stub shaft in the bush 34. For this purpose the part 33 of each arm 22 is connected with a control mechanism described below, which ensures that the arms 22 are pivoted towards each other during their upward swinging movement, and away from each other during their downward movement.
The shaft further carries a set of L-shaped arms 56 and 57, which are directly attached to the shaft 30 and are rigidly connected with it so that the parts of the arms 56 and 57 corresponding with the parts 22 of the arms 22, 23 are parallel to the arms 22 and lie in the same horizontal plane when the shaft 30 has swung the arms 22 into the horizontal position (FIG. 3).
The control mechanism which pivots the arms 22, 33 during their swinging movement into the vertical position consists of a rod 58 (FIG. 11) attached to each bush 34, which by means The magazine A for a stack 39 of slotted and prescored box blanks 1 consists ofa front wall 36 and a backwall 37 (HO. 2), the stack of blanks resting on the upper side, downwardly sloping towards the arms 22, of a support 38 which is carried by the frame of the apparatus. The magazine A is provided with a reciprocating pusher device (not shown) which pushes the lowermost blank of the stack 39 into the nip of pairs of aligned feed rollers 40 and 41. The embodiment shown has four pairs of knurled feed rollers, the topmost feed rollers 40 being constructed as larger diameter sections of a sleeve 42 as also are the lowermost feed rollers 41. These sleeves are mounted on shafts 43 and 44 respectively, the shaft 43 being joumaled in a set of supports 45 attached to the front wall 36 of the magazine A and the shaft 44 being joumaled in the sidewalls 46 of the support 38 of the magazine. The shafts 43 and 44 are driven continuously by an electric motor 47 by means of an endless chain 48, which runs over a sprocket wheel 49 mounted on the motor shaft and over a sprocket wheel 50 at the end of each of the shafts 43 and 44.
In the frame of the apparatus a fixed support is located being formed by the fixed plates 51, 52, 53 and 54, the plates 51 and 52 extending on both sides of the path described by the plate 23 of the second tiltable platform 21 at the end of its downward tilting movement. The plates 53 and 54 extend one at each end of the plate 52 in a direction transverse to the tilting planes of the platforms 19 and 21 and transverse to the swinging movement of the arms 22. in the space between the plates 53 and 54 a roller conveyor is arranged, formed by rollers 55 supported in the frame of the apparatus, the top surface of which conveyor lies on the same level as the plates 51, 52, 53 and 54.
On each side of the fixed support formed by the plates 51, 52, 53 and 54 and the rollers 55 an endless chain 61 is provided, which chains each run over a sprocket wheel 62 and a sprocket wheel 63, one of which is driven continuously. The two chains 61 together form a conveyor for a single flight or pusher 64 (FlGS. 2 and 11), carried by a rod 65 the ends of which are each attached to one of the chains 61. The axis of each wheel 62, 63 lies substantially in the plane of the fixed support 5l55, so that in its forward travel the flight 64 passes above the fixed support and in its return travel passes below said support. The flight 64 has such dimensions as to enable it to pass underthe arms 22, when the latter have swung into the horizontal position, as shown in FIG. 11, the drive of the chains 61 and of the arms 22 being timed to this.
The sides 66 of the flight 64 are bent slightly inwards, so that in plan view the flight is U-shaped. I
For the purpose of folding the inner end flaps 69 partly inwards at one end of the partly formed box the arms 22 are provided with strap members 70, the arm 56 being provided with a rail 71 secured to the arm to pivot with it, for completely closing the flaps 69. To this arm 56 also a guide plate 72 is attached, which in cooperation with afixed guide plate 73 of similar form but fitted on the frame of the apparatus closes the outer end flaps 74 of the box at one end. Moreover, on both sides of the path followed by the flight 64 fixed gluing heads 75 and 76 are provided, which apply glue to the flaps 74 before the latter are closed by the guide plates 72 and 73.
On the other side of the path followed by the flight 64, strap members 77 corresponding with the straps are mounted on the arms 22, a rail 78 corresponding the rail 71, together with a guide plate 79 corresponding with the guide plate 72 and a gluing head corresponding with the gluing head being attached to a carrier (not shown) which is moved outside the path described by the second tiltable platform 21 during its tilting movement. A second fixed guide plate 73 is also provided on the other side of the path described by the flight 64. The movements of the tiltable platforms 19, 21 and of the arms 22, 56, 57 are derived from a number of cams (not shown) mounted on a cam shaft 80, which cam shaft also carries the cam disc 15 already described. This cam shaft is driven continuously by an electric motor 81, which via a stepless transmission 82 with variable transmission ratio drives a reduction gearing 83. This gearing 83 on the one hand drives the shaft 85 of the sprocket wheels 63 via a chain transmission 84, and on the other hand a worm-gear box 86 driving the cam shaft 80.
The operation of the apparatus is as follows:
When the foremost layer of articles 17 of the advancing double row 3 has reached the foot part 18 of the loader 4 in the position shown in FIGS. 1, 2, 4, 7, 8 and 9, the latter begins its tilting movement (FIG. 5) until it has reached the position shown in FIG. 6 as a result of which the stack of articles measured off and carried by the loader is resting on the foot part 18. Shortly before the loader 4 reaches the position shown in FIG. 6, a pushing device (not shown) has fed the lowermost box blank of the blanks l lying in the magazine A between the nip of the feed rollers 40 and 41, so that this blank is advanced and thus comes to rest on the arms 22, 56 and 57, which are in the position shown in FIGS. 1, 2, 5, 6 and 7, the blank being positioned by stops on the arms. Subsequently, the second tiltable platform 21 swings upwardly, its plate 23 passing between the arms 22, during which operation the box blank resting on the arms 22, 56 and 57 is picked up by the plate 23 and arms 26 on the second tiltable platform 21 (FIG. 5) and is tilted into the vertical position (FIGS. 6 and 11). In this operation the movements of the loader 4 and platform 21 are timed with respect to each other in such a way that the box blank is already in the vertical position when the loader 4 reaches the position shown in FIG. 6. Subsequently the first tiltable platform 19 begins its tilting movement, the second tiltable platform 21 simultaneously tilting back into the horizontal position (FIGS. 6-9). As a result of this the vertical stack of articles resting on the foot part 18 of the loader 4 is lifted by the platform 19, the stack gradually coming to rest on the panel 87 (FIGS..1 and 11) of the blank 1, which panel will afterwards form the bottom of the box.
The instant that the second tiltable platfonn 21 reaches the plane of the arms 22, 56, 57, which are still in a downwardly inclined position (FIG. 7), the latter begin their upward swinging movement into the horizontal position (FIGS. 8-11), and as they swing upwardly they also pivot inwardly as previously described, with the result that the panel 88 is folded around the score line 91 (FIGS. 1 and 11) against a lateral surface of the stack of articles, the panel 89 of the blank being folded around the score line 92 against the opposite lateral surface of the stack of articles. During the erection of the panels 88 and 89 of the blank the flaps 69 of the panels 88 and 89 are gradually folded inwards by the strap members 70 and 77 attached to the arms 22, thus preventing toppling over of the outer layers of the stack of articles.
At the end of this tilting movement of the second tiltable platform 21 the panel 87 of the already partly formed box also comes to rest on the plates 51 and S2 of the fixed support, the position then being as shown in FIGS. 8 and 11.
As soon as the stack of articles in the partly formed box rests on the fixed support, the first tiltable platform 19 is rapidly pivoted back into its starting position (FIG. 9), the arms 22 remaining in their horizontal position. When, on tilting back, the tiltable platform 19 has cleared the flaps 69, the flight 64 comes into contact with the panel 88 of the box and begins to push the box over the conveyor rollers 55 of the fixed support. As a result of this the panel 90 of the blank forming the top surface of the box is folded around the fold line 93 against the top surface of the stack of articles by the arm 22 located nearest to the conveyor rollers 55, the box flaps 69 being further closed by the sides 66 of the flight. These flaps are subsequently closed completely when the box passes the rails 71 and 78. On passing of the box along the gluing heads 75 and 76, all flaps 74 are provided with glue, after which the flaps are closed by the guide plates 72, 73 and 79, us the flaps travel past the plates.
The completely closed box is subsequently tilted through 90 by a tilting device described below and pushed between a pair of horizontal conveyor belts 94 and 95 and a cooperating set of vertical'conveyor belts 96 and 97. The belt 95 folds the glue tab 98 of the box over and keeps it pressed down, and the second set of belts 96 and 97 keep the flaps 74 pressed down until the glue has hardened. The glue flap 98 is provided with glue during the discharge of a box blank 1 from the magazine A by a gluing head (not shown) located on the support 38 of the magazine.
The last-mentioned tilting device consists of a support which is pivotal around a shaft 99 (FIG. 3) and has a foot part 100 and a slotted back part 101. The box moved on to the foot part 100 by the flight 64 is then tilted with the support until it rests on the slotted back part 101 (FIG. 11), after which it is pushed between the belts 96 and 97 by the action of a pneumatic cylinder 102. For this purpose a pushing device is fitted on the piston rod of the cylinder 102 and can pass through the slots of the foot part 101, said pusher device also having two outer parts guided by rollers 103 over a support plate 104, the outer parts of which device move past the outside of the foot part 101 and engage the box at its corners.
What I claim is:
1. A method of manufacturing a box completely filled with articles by folding a flat box blank, slotted and scored to have bottom, side and top'panels all with end flaps, around a stack of articles, comprising the steps of forming a stack of superimposed layers of articles, presenting the flat box blank in a vertical plane to a lateral face of the stack and with the bottom panel of the blank engaging said lateral face, tilting the blank and stack simultaneously in a direction perpendicular to the plane of the blank to bring the blank into a horizontal plane with the stack resting upon the blank bottom panel, folding up the side panels of the blank against the stick during the tilting step, and folding the top panel and the end flaps against the stack during further movement of the stack and the partly filled blank in a horizontal direction perpendicular to the plane of tilting.
2. A method according to claim 1, and comprising the further step of folding inwardly the end flaps of the side panels of the blank during the tilting step.
3. A method according to claim 2, and comprising the further step of applying glue to the end flaps of the top and bottom panels of the box blank during movement of the stack and the partly folded blank in the horizontal direction.
4. A machine for folding about a stack of articles a flat box blank slotted and scored to have bottom, side and top panels all with end flaps, comprising a first tiltable platform, means for pivoting said platform between horizontal and vertical positions, article feed means operative to deliver a stack of superimposed articles to said first tiltable platform when in its horizontal position, a second tiltable slotted platform pivotal about the same axis as the first tiltable platform between vertical and horizontal position, the relationship between the two platforms providing that the first platform when horizontal is edge-on to the second platform with the latter vertical, means for driving said platforms for them to pivot rearwardly in unison when the first platform is tilted from its horizontal to its vertical position but for the first platform to return to its horizontal position in advance of pivoting of the second platform upwardly to its vertical position, feed means for delivering a flat box blank to the second tiltable platform when said platform is in its horizontal position and prior to its upward pivoting towards the horizontal first platform to present a flat box blank in a vertical plane to a lateral face of a stack of articles on the first platform, and folding members located in the rearward pivotal path of the two platforms, in register with slots in the second platform, for erecting side panels of the box blank about the stack during the rearward pivotal movement of the two platforms.
5. A machine according to claim 4, wherein the folding members consist of two parallel arms which are pivotal together about a first horizontal axis parallel to the pivotal axis of the platforms, and which are also pivotal towards and away from each other, each about an axis perpendicular to the first axis, means being provided for driving the arms to perform upward and inward pivotal movements simultaneously during the downward pivoting of the two platforms.
the tiltable platforms, said conveyor member operating toadvance the partly formed box and the stack along a horizontal path, and folding members disposed alongside said path for folding about the stack the top panel and the end flaps of the blank.
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