US 3743093 A
Small parts such as rivets or studs are tested for compliance with dimensional tolerance allowances by being moved through the throat of a caliper device, the throat being defined, at one side, by a fixed surface and at the other side by a moveable surface associated with a switch contact. If a switch is operated a sorting device or gate is positioned to separate the non-complying part from the main stream of acceptable parts.
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July 3, 1973 United States Patent [191 Klancni SORTING MACHINES 2,427,410 9/1947 209/82  Inventor: Adolph mmancnikdozo Glenville 2.778.497 1/:957 209/72 Drive, Glenview, Ill.
Jan. 20, 1972 Primary Examiner-Richard A. Schacher Attorney-James B. Kinzer et al.
Appl. No.: 219,450
ABSTRACT Small parts such as rivets or studs are tested for com ance with dimensional tolerance allowances b moved through the throat of a cal Related US. Application Data  Continuation of Ser. No. 82,690, Oct. 21
y being iper device, the throat being defined, at one side, by a fixed surface and at the other side by a moveable surface associated with a 209/88 90 switch contact. If a switch is operated a sorting device or gate is positioned to separate the non-complying part from the main stream of acceptable parts.
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SORTING MACHINES This application is a continuation of application Ser.
No. 82,690, filed Oct. 21, 1970, now abandoned.
This invention relates to a machine for separating small parts of work pieces such as studs, rivets and screws, separation being in terms of acceptable and unacceptable dimensions.
In accordance with the present invention the parts to be measured for compliance with acceptable dimensions are fed individually one by one from a supply hopper into a guideway where caliper devices are presented for testing each part for dimensional compliance, and the primary object of the present invention is to achieve compliance testing for several different dimensions in the course of a single forward stroke of a feeder which moves the part to be tested through the guideway. A related object of the present invention is to enable such rapid feed testing to be accomplished by operating a separating gate electromagnetically, the electromagnet for operating the gate being subject to an unusual form of circuitry for holding or maintaining the energized state. Thus, I have found that high speed operation can be attained provided that current is supplied instantly to the electromagnet without first establishing the holding circuit; in other words, I do not utilize a holding circuit to energize the electromagnet, but rather establish the holding circuit separately.
A further important object of the present invention is to so construct the machine and equip it with toggle switches as to enable the calipers to be visibly set (by lamp signal) in the accurate dimensional testing position; a related object is to mount each caliper device for coarse and fine micrometer adjustment.
Further objects of the present invention are to enable the tracks and guideways on the machine to be readily adjusted for transporting parts of widely varied dimension; and to design the electrical circuitry in such a fashion that high speed, efficient operation may be normally achieved while enabling the machine to be readily adjusted to its set-up"condition beforehand; and to construct the machine compactly for high speed, dependable operation while nonetheless providing assurance that parts failing to comply with the dimensional requirements are rejected.
Other and further objects of the present invention will be apparent from the following description and claims and are illustrated in the accompanying drawings which, by way of illustration, show a preferred embodiment of the present invention and the principles thereof and is now considered to be the best mode contemplated for applying these principles. Other embodiments of the invention embodying the same or equivalent principles may be used and structural changes may be made as desired by those skilled in the art without departing from the present invention.
In the Drawings:
FIG. I is a perspective view of the machine;
FIG. 2 is an end elevation of the machine;
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary plan view on an enlarged scale compared to FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a diagramatic view showing dimensions that may be calipered;
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary elevational view on an enlarged scale, taken on line 5-5 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary plan view on an enlarged scale;
FIG. 7 is a wiring diagram; and
FIGS. 8 and 9 are sectional views of the machine.
GENERAL DESCRIPTION The separating or sorting apparatus of the present invention is illustrated in its entirety at 20, FIG. 1, and comprises a vibratory supply hopper 21 containing the parts to be separated or sorted. An extreme example would be an indiscriminate mixing of screws and rivets having different shank lengths and shank diameters. A more practical illustration would be rivets or studs, presumably all of acceptable dimension but nonetheless to be measured to assure that in fact all parts feeding through the machine comply with the acceptable dimension. In this connection, attention is directed to FIG. 4 showing a work piece part in the form of a stud or rivet having a head diameter D, a head height H, a shank length L and a shank diameter d. In accordance with the present invention, each of these four dimensions is to be tested or measured to determine compliance with the acceptable dimension.
Before considering the details of the machine it is appropriate to consider the flow of parts from the supply hopper 21, down a feed track 24, FIG. 2, from thence transversely one by one through a guideway 30, FIG. 6, and eventually, following dimension testing in the guideway 30, to a discharge station represented by a gate 31 which has two positions, one position (solid lines, FIG. 6) for directing the tested part found acceptable into a collecting bin 32, FIG. 1, the second position of the gate (dotted lines, FIG. 6) being effective to guide an unacceptable part into an adjacent reject bin 33, FIG. 3.
In a manner to be explained in more detail hereafter, each part being moved through the guideway 30 is first exposed to a caliper device where the shank diameter d is calipered or measured for acceptability, such measurement being taken by a caliper device 35, FIG. 6, which includes a flexibly mounted caliper lever or sensor 36 and an associated momentary (MICRO) twoposition switch 37. Next, the part being calipered is tested for head height H and shank length L by respective caliper devices 40 and 41, FIG. 5. The head height caliper 40 is also characterized by a flexibly mounted caliper lever 42 and an associated momentary twoposition switch 43. In like manner, the shank length caliper 41 embodies a flexibly mounted lever system 45 and an associated (remotely located) momentary twoposition switch 46.
Finally, the part moving through the guideway 30 has the head diameter D thereof calipered by a head diameter caliper 50, FIG. 6, alsocharacterized by a flexible mounted lever 51 and an associated momentary switch 52.
The characteristic of each caliper device is essentially the same in that the flexible lever or floating caliper element is disposed to engage one side of the dimension being tested for compliance, the opposite side of the part bearing against some fixed or unyielding part such as the adjacent portion of the guideway 30. In the event that the dimension is oversize, the caliper lever is accordingly deflected and operates the associated switch, the associated switch contact or actuator being in constant contact with the side of the lever opposite the side engageable with the dimension being measured.
It will be appreciated that the disclosure is concerned with an embodiment of the invention presently preferred, and hence it is possible to have resort to equivalent elements for accomplishing the caliper action. For example, the two-position momentary switch could be supplanted by another two-position switch device such as a transducer having a non-stressed position characterizing the set point of the caliper, where no current is generated, and having a stressed or actuated position where current is generated indicating oversize determined by deflection of the sensor or caliper lever. Further the caliper lever itself could be replaced in some instances by a mere tension of the transducer-type switch, an extension of appreciable length to project into the guideway 30. However, there are several advantages in having resort to a caliper lever engaging a separate switch contact: the switch need not have its contact rubbing on the part to be measured; the switch and caliper lever can be easily adjusted in unison and the lever can multiply or amplify small dimensional discrepancies so that the switch need not be supersensitive.
MOVEMENT OF PARTS FROM THE HOPPER TO GUIDEWAY 30 As best seen in FIG. 1, the hopper 21 sets on a supporting plate 55, the plate 55 in turn being supported adjustably by bolts 56 threadedly mounted in an outwardly projecting flange 57 of a pedestal 58, this supporting arrangement prevailing also at the other side of the support plate 55 not visible in FIG. 1.
The hopper 21 is of a known vibratory type and is effective to induce movement of the parts P, FIG. 1, to be tested upwardly along a spiral ledge 60, and as will be described hereinafter the parts P are guided therefrom to the downwardly inclined track 24 for transmittal to guideway 30.
The machine 20 includes a main support plate or bed 61, FIG. 1, and a second pedestal 62 is secured thereto forwardly of the hopper 21, the pedestal 62 having an upwardly projecting web 63 which supports a transversely extending beam 64. The beam 64 is set at an angle on the upper edge of the, web .63 and presents a flange 65 bolted to the web 63. The beam 64 also includes a web 66 in a plane at right angles tothe flange 65.
A pair of rails 70 and 71, FIG. 6, are arranged in parallel relation to one another and repose on the upper face of the flange 65 so as to project rearwardly and upwardly therefrom as will be evident in FIG. 1. Rail 70 is secured to flange 65 as by bolts 72, FIG. 2, and the other rail 71 is adjustable laterally with respect to rail 70 to define the width of the trackway 24, FIG. 6, in a manner to be explained.
The rails 70 and 71 at the upper end thereof terminate adjacent the exit end of the spiral ledge 60 which is a part of the hopper 21. The spiral ledge 60, at the exit end, 6013, FIG. 3, meets a pair of adjustable slides 73 and 74, FIG. 3, presenting spaced parallel edges (not shown) the separation of which affords a slot 75 into which the shank of the parts P drop (due to vibration) so the heads II thereof are uppermost and ride on the edges of the slides 73 and 74 as they move from slot 75 to track 24. By adjusting slides 73 and 74, parts P having shanks of variant diameter may be accommodated.
Rail 70 is a fixed rail and rail 71 is an adjustable rail, and to this end a pair of U-shaped brackets 86 ad 87, FIG. 1, are so disposed that the legs thereof embrace the outer sides of the rails whereas the web or strap thereof overlies a cover plate 88 which covers the track 24. The left hand legs of the brackets 86 and 87 are fastened (in a manner not shown) to rail so that in effect the brackets 86 ad 87 become a part of the fixed rail 70. Referring to FIG. 2, a large stud 90 is threadedly mounted in the web of each bracket 86 and 87. A screw 91 having a head 91H is freely mounted in a bore in the stud 90 with the threaded lower end 91T threadedly mounted in the cover plate 88. Thus, the cover plate 88 is supported by two screws as 91.
The studs 90 become reference points or stops for loeating the cover plate 88 to accommodate parts as P having different head heights. Thus, the lower end of each stud 90 bears on the top side of the cover plate 88 held tightly thereto by the screw 91. By turning the stud 90 in or out as the case may be, the stop position may be varied and then fixed or locked by appropriately turning the screw 91. The same sort of adjustment is used to vary the width of the track 24, and to this end the right hand leg of each bracket 86 and 87, FIG. 1, is provided with a similar stud and screw set 94 .95 whereby the movable rail 71 may be shifted toward or away from the opposite rail 70 to neatly accommodate parts as P having shanks of different diameter.
THE TRANSFER FEEDER The guideway 30, FIG. 8, is defined by a pair of spaced bars and 101 which are laterally adjustable. The head of a part as P will ride on the upper surfaces of the bars 100 and 101. A slide or transfer feeder 103, FIG. 5, is disposed in guideway 30 for reciprocation incidental to moving a part P through the guideway 30. In FIG. 5, the transfer feeder 103 has the forwardmost end 103E thereof disposed at the end of the guideway 30, having advanced part P1 to the gate 31. This is the forwardmost advanced position of the slide 103, and it may be mentioned that the momentum imparted to part P1 during the advancing or feed stroke of the slide 103 is sufficient to thrust part P1 from the guideway to the discharge station.
The retracted position of the transfer slide 103, on the other hand, is such that the end 103E will be disposed at the end of the trackway 24 in position to fit the shank of the next work piece, P2. As shown in FIG. 6, two positions are shown for the next work piece, P2. The solid line position is the position occupied by work piece P2 at the same time work piece P1 is being driven from the guideway 30; the dotted line position is the position it will occupy when the slide is retracted, allowingpart P2 to move a short distance from trackway 24 into guideway 30. It may be mentioned at this point that a single advancing stroke of the slide 103 moves the part to be measured past and in contrast with all the caliper device and out of the guideway 30.
The transfer slide 103 is operated by a piston 105, FIG. 6, and the piston in turn is controlled by air under pressure delivered to a cylinder block 106, FIG. 1. The free end of piston 105 is fastened to a block 107, FIG. 6, as by a screw 108, and a bracket 109 in turn is fastened to one side of block 107 by screws as 110. The transfer slide 103 is fastened to the opposite side of the block 107 as will be evident in FIG. 6.
Bracket 109 includes a lug 112 having an aperture therein enabling the lug 112 to slide on a rod 113. Rod 113 is provided at one end with adjustable stop nuts 114 and 115 which regulate the advanced and return positions of the slide 103. Rod 113 extends through a switch-box 120, FIG. 3, and is firmly anchored thereto.
The construction of the cylinder and piston arrangements constitutes no part of the present invention, and it need be only incidentally mentioned that fluid under pressure (preferably air) for reciprocating the transfer slide is delivered to fittings 121 and 122, FIG. I, attached to the cylinder block, through conduits 123 and 124, sequencing being accomplished by an appropriate four-way, two-position valve, under control of limit switches (not shown).
CALIPERING THE SHANK DIAMETER Referring to FIG. 6, the first measurement for compliance is by the sensor of lever 36 associated with switch 37, but it may first be mentioned that a detent device 130 is interposed in guideway 30 to assure proper indexing of the parts as P. The detent 130 includes a projection 131 having a beveled edge 131E against which the head of the part will rest when the part next to be calipered, part P2, drops from the trackway 24 into the guideway 30. The slide 103 will be retracted at this time, and on its next forward stroke will move the head of part P2 across the cam edge or slope 131E of the detent, the latter yielding.
The projection 131 is fastened to the left hand end, FIG. 6, of a detent arm 133, the latter being pivoted on a pin 134 and biased to the normal position, disposing edge 13113 as shown in FIG. 6, by a spring 135 having one end anchored to the detent arm 133 and the opposite end anchored to an adjusting stud 136 for regulating the rate of the spring. A stop stud 137 has the head thereof in a position to bear against the underside of the detent arm 133, thereby to regulate the extent to which the edge 131E normally extends into the guideway 30.
The shank diameter sensor or caliper lever 36 is disposed in a slot in the guide bar 100, FIG. 6, and is mounted pivotally on a pin 145. The caliper lever 36 is further retained by a leaf spring 146, FIG. 6, bearing on the side of the lever 36 opposite the side exposed to the guideway 30. Switch 37, FIG. 6, has an operating contact button 37C also bearing against the side of lever 36 opposite the side exposed to guideway 30, switch 37 being normally in an open state.
Referring to FIG. 2, the guide bar 100 which supports caliper lever 36 is fastened to a slide block 150 which reposes on the upper face of flange 65. Slide block 150, FIG. 6, is provided with slots 151, and the shanks of cap screws 152 extend therethrough to secure the slide block 150 to the flange 165. By loosening the cap screws 152, the slide block 150 may be adjusted thereby to locate the caliper lever 36 in a set position characteristic of the shank of the part being measured just clearing the face of lever 36 exposed to guideway 30. As shown in FIG. 8, the slide block 150 has a key 153 fitting a corresponding slot in flange 65.
The switch structure 37, FIG. 2, is mounted securely on a slide block 155. Slide block 155 which carries switch 37 is provided with slots 156, FIG. 1, through which extend the shanks of cap screws I57, whereby, when the screws 157 are loosened, slide block 155 may be shifted to locate switch contact 37C, FIG. 8, with respect to the adjacent surface of caliper lever 36. The underside of the slide block 155 is grooved to mate with a key 158, FIG. 8, supported by the slide block 150.
The two slide blocks and are arranged for independent micrometer adjustment so that the set position of the caliper lever 30 may be varied for parts having shanks of different diameter. Adjustment of slide 150 is a coarse adjustment, and fine adjustment is attained by micrometer movement of the slide block 155 which carries the switch structure 37.
Thus, as shown best in FIG. 2, a lug 160 depends from the lower end of the flange 65, being fixed thereto. A relatively large micrometer screw 161 is rotatably anchored in lug 160, and the threaded shank thereof fits a tapped opening in a lug 162 which depends from and is secured to the lower end of slide block 150. When the cap screws 152, FIG. 6, are loosened, screw 161, when turned, will move the slide block 150 in or out as the case may be, considered in terms of movement of the face of the caliper lever 36 exposed to guideway 30.
Slide block 155 is provided at its lower end, FIG. 2, with a lug 165 having a tapped opening which receives a second micrometer screw 166, one end of the latter being journaled in a bushing 167 secured to lug 162 which depends from the slide block 150. Micrometer screw 166 is of fine or more sensitive character compared to screw 161. When the cap screws 157, FIG. 1, are loosened, fine adjustment may be imparted to switch structure 37 to vary the degree of content between lever 36 and switch 37.
It will be realized that coarse adjustment of the caliper structure 35 as a whole is accomplished initially by utilizing the micrometer screw 161 while moving a part P of correct dimension through guideway 30. Any finer adjustment that may be necessary to establish the accurate set position of the caliper 35 is accomplished by micrometer screw 166.
The caliper lever 36, FIG. 6, is flexibly retained by the leaf spring 146, which is to say that in the event the part being tested for compliance has an oversize shank, the caliper lever 36 is shifted outwardly of guideway 30 by a corresponding amount, producing operation of switch 37.
CALIPERING THE SHANK LENGTH AND THE HEAD HEIGHT It is to be remembered that the rivet, screw or other part as P being calipered for dimensional compliance is moved through the guideway 30 in a single stroke of the feeder 103, and in the course of this single stroke of the feeder the shank diameter is first measured or tested, whereafter the part moves past the caliper devices 40 and 41, FIG. 5, where head height, H, FIG. 4, and shank length, L, are tested simultaneouly.
Referring to FIG. 5, the head height caliper lever 42 is pivotally mounted on a pin 170, being biased against a stop 171 by a coil spring 172, the tension of which is adjustable by means of an adjusting screw 173. As in the instance of all other caliper levers lever 42 has a face (42F) projecting into the guideway 30, the opposite face (42A) thereof bearing against the contact button of the associated switch which in this instance is contact 43C of switch 43.
Switch 43, as shown in FIG. 2, is supported on a slide bar 175, and the associated caliper lever 42 is retained within a block 176 in turn fastened to a slide bar 177. The slide bars and 177 are arranged functionally in precisely the same manner as the slide bars described above in connection with caliper device 35, which is to say that coarse adjustment is imparted to slide bar 177 by a micrometer screw 180, and fine adjustment is imparted to slide bar 175 by a micrometer screw 181.
Again, the set position the caliper device 40 will be such that for a part P having the correct head height the top surface of the part being tested lightly contacts without shifting lever 42, but if the head is too high lever 42 is shifted upwardly, out of guideway 30, and operates switch contact 43C.
The caliper-ing unit 41 for testing shank length includes an upwardly directed sensor or caliper lever 185, FIG. 5, presenting a free end 186 adapted to be brushed by the lower end of the shank of the part being calipered. Lever 185 is fastened to a horizontally extending arm 187, mounted pivotally on a pin 188. The left hand end of the arm 187 has a screw 191 threadedly mounted therein, the latter being provided with a lock nut 192. The upper end of screw 191 projects outwardly of arm 187 and is adapted to bear against the head of a stop stud 193, being urged in this direction by a spring 194 having one end anchored to arm 187 at one side of pin 188 and the opposite end anchored to a fixed pin (not shown).
Spring 172, FIG. 5, which biases the head check caliper lever 42 is stronger compared to spring 194 which tends to urge arm 187 clockwise as viewed in FIG. 5. Thus, if the shank of the part being tested is too long a switch operating stud 195, FIG. 5, at the right hand end of arm 187 is moved away from the operating button 46C of the shank length caliper switch 46,. and the internal contacts of switch 46 make. This mode of operation is chosen so that a defective part P characterized by a shank of unusual length will not jam in guideway 30.
As shown in FIG. 9, switch 46 is carried on a slide block 200, and arm 187 which supports the caliper lever 185 is in effect supported on a slide block 201. The slide block 200 is supported for movement under the control of a fine micrometer screw 202, and slide block 201 is supported for sliding movement under control of a coarse micrometer screw 203 in the same manner described above in more detail in connection with the caliper structure 35.
HEAD DIAMETER CALIPER Referring to FIG. 6, the caliper lever 51 for measuring head diameter presents a surface 51A spaced from an opposing surface 51B of an anvil 210, the gap between the opposed surface 51A and 518 being such that a head of acceptable diameter moves neatly therebetween.
As shown in FIG. 6, the anvil 210 is provided with a pair of elongated slots 212 for receiving the shanks of cap screws 213, the latter being suitably anchored in tapped openings in a support plate 214. By loosening screws 213, the anvil 210 may be adjusted incidental to making more wide or more narrow the caliper gap or throat between the surfaces 51A and 51B.
The side of the caliper lever 51 opposite side 51A is normally in engagement with contact button 52C of switch 52.
The caliper lever 51 is pivotally mounted on a pin 215 supported by a retainer block 216 and is yieldably disposed in the position shown in FIG. 6 by a leaf spring 217 bearing against the side thereof opposite the surface 51A. The lever 51 carries a stop pin 218 disposed in an elongated slot 219 formed in the retainerblock 216.
The retainer block 216 which supports the lever 51 is fastened to a slide block 220, FIGS. 6 and 8, supported for coarse adjustment by a micrometer screw 221, FIG. 8, and the switch housing structure for the switch 52 is supported on a slide block 222, FIG. 8, arranged for fine adjustment through a micrometer screw 223, FIG. 3.
ACTION AT THE DISCHARGE STATION The separating gate 31, FIG. 6, is located at the end of the guideway 30 and represents what may be viewed as the discharge station of the machine where acceptable parts are separated from unacceptable parts. Normally, gate 31 is disposed in the position shown in FIG. 6 by solid lines, and to this end gate 31 is fastened to an arm 235 which is pivotally mounted on a pin 236 the latter being supported by a bar 237 which is part of a frame 239, FIG. 3, which supports additional parts at the discharge station as hereinafter disclosed.
A stud 240, FIG. 3, is secured to one side of the bar 237, and one end of a spring 241 is anchored thereto. The other end of the spring 241 is secured to the end of 'arm 235 opposite the gate 31, and thus the spring 241 serves to locate the gate 31 in its normal position, FIGS. 3 and 6, where parts as P1, FIG. 6, delivered thereto are deflected into a shute 244, FIG. 1, which directs the parts of acceptable dimension into the collecting bin or box 32.
Gate 31 is under control of an electromagnet 245, FIG. 6, having the core 246 thereof positioned immediately adjacent to arm 235 so when a magnetic field is generated upon energization of electromagnet 245 the field acts as a repulsion force producing clockwise pivotal movement of arm 235 against the return action of the spring 241.
A stop screw 250, FIG. 6, is threadedly mounted in a tapped opening in a bar 251 which is fastened to bar 237, extending at right angles thereto. A lock nut 252 maintains the adjusted position of screw 250. The ad justed position of screw 250 determines the extent to which gate 31 will swing when the electromagnet is energized, and in this connection, it will be observed, FIG. 3, that the electromagnet 245 is in effect supported by an adjustment screw 255 threadedly mounted in a tapped opening in a crossplate 256.
If any caliper switch is operated upon detecting an unacceptable dimension, electromagnet 245 is energized in the same portion of the cycle of the machine, a cycle being defined by the reciprocal strokes of the feeder plate 103. The machine as presently disclosed rejects parts which are oversized, that is, those which exceed the upper tolerance limit, but after all parts as P have been tested in one run of the machine selection can be reversed in the next run to separate any undersized parts which may have been delivered to bin 32 in the first run. Thus, in the next run the caliper devices will be set to indicate a rejection into bin 33 of parts meeting the lower tolerance limit, in which event undersized parts, under the lower tolerance limit, will be delivered to bin 32.
ELECTRICAL CONTROLS The wiring diagram of essential features is set forth in FIG. 7, the main circuit being represented by two wires 301 and 302 adapted to be connected to an outlet carrying 115 volts AC. A wire 303 is connected between wires 301 and 302; the main off-on switch 306 (see also FIG. 1) is located therein and also a set-up switch 307 normally in the position shown in FIG. 7, but adapted to be set in a second position for purposes to be explained in detail below.
Wire 303 also has in series therewith a cam-operated limit switch 308, normally in the closed position shown in FIG. 7, when the feeder 103 returns to its start position to pick up a new part to be advanced through the' guideway 30. Switch 308 is located within the switch box 120, FIG. 1.
A manually operated cycling switch 309 is also interposed in wire 303 and is located atop the switch box 120, FIG. 1. Switch 309 is normally in the on position shown in FIG. 7, but it may be moved manually to the open or off position to prevent operation of solenoid 310 also in series in wire 303.
Solenoid 310 is located adjacent the switch box 120 and is used to control and cycle operation of a solenoid valve (not shown) which sequences air to cylinder block 106 incidental to advancing the feeder piston when switch 308 is in the position shown in FIG. 7.
A wire 312 is connected at one end to terminal 307A associated with switch 307. The opposite end of wire 312 is connected to wire 302. A relay 313 is interposed in wire 312 as well as the holding contacts 314 thereof, the latter being normally open and closed only when relay 313 is energized in a manner to be explained.
A wire 318 is connected at one end to a wire 312 and at its opposite end is connected to a wire 319. Wire 319 is connected at one end to wire 318 and at its opposite end is connected to wire 312. The head diameter switch 52 is interposed in wire 319.
A wire 321 is connected in parallel to wire 318, and is further extended to wire 302, the electromagnet 245 being interposed therein along with the head height checking switch 43.
A wire 322 is connected in parallel with wire 318 and the shank diameter checking switch 37 is interposed therein.
Switch 46 used in calipering the shank length is interposed in wire 318.
A wire 325 is connected at one end to wire 303 and at the opposite end is connected to wire 302. A solenoid 326 is connected in series with wire 325. Solenoid 326 is located adjacent switch box 120 and controls a solenoid valve (not shown) which induces return movement of the feeder piston. A normally open feeder return limit switch 327 is connected in series with wire 325, being located in switch box 120 and closed when the feeder 103 is at the end of its forward travel.
When the switches 306 and 309 are closed and when the set-up switch 307 is in the position shown in FIG. 7, solenoid 310 is energized and institutes a machine cycle characterized by forward movement of the feeder 103 which picks up a part at the right end of guideway 30 and moves it through the various caliper stations. When feeder 103 starts its forward stroke, switch contact 308 is moved to its terminal 308A, supplying current to wire 318, and in the event that any one of the caliper switches 37, 43, 46 or 52 is operated, current is instantly supplied to the electromagnet 245 and to relay 313. Both the relay 313 and solenoid 245 are then energized; relay contacts 314 are closed, and the closed contacts 314 hold solenoid 245 energized. It was found that a greater operating speed and more reliability could be attained by energizing the electromagnet independently without first establishing the holding circuit.
When the pusher or feeder 103 reaches the end of its forward stroke, switch 327 in the switch box is closed, energizing the return solenoid 326 which in effect institutes reversal of piston 105. When the feeder attains the end of its return stroke switch 308 is moved off contact 308A as an incident thereto, deenergizing relay 313 and thereby disrupting or disengaging the holding circuit for the electromagnet.
SET-UP An important feature of the present invention is that the caliper units may be individually checked for accuracy with relative ease, and in accomplishing this each of the caliper circuits is provided with a toggle switch respectively identified at 52T, 43T, 37T and 46T, FIG. 10. Normally, these toggle switches are closed, that is, the toggle switches are closed in the course of normal cycling of the machine, but in the course of setting up the machine for operation the four toggles, 52T, 43T, 37T and 46T are shifted to the open position. Switch 307 is moved to its second position, placing it in series with wire 312. Then, as a caliper unit is being adjusted in its set position through adjustment of the caliper screws the operator will flip the associated toggle switch, say switch 52T, to its closed position while leaving the other three in their open positions. A switch 330 is interposed in wire 319 and the contact thereof, concurrently with moving switch 307 to its second position, is disposed in engagement with an associated terminal 330A during the set-up operation. Terminal 330A is part of a wire 331 connected at its opposite end to wire 302, and a signal lamp 332 is interposed therein.
During set-up, a part as P, FIG. 4, of correct dimension is used, and if the throat or gap of the caliper unit is too tight to receive or pass the test part of correct dimension, then lamp 332 will be lit. Then, as the caliper level is backed away, or opened more in a manner of speaking, by appropriate adjustment of the micrometer screws, a point will be reached where the part of correct dimension moves through the caliper throat or gap without operating the associated caliper lever, and at this point the lamp 332 will not light.
It will be seen from the foregoing that the parts P to be calipered for dimensional compliance are advanced by vibratory action in the hopper 21 to the guide slot 75 where each part is erected, so to speak, so that its shank will move into the track 24 defined by the spaced guide rails and 71, the head H of the part P reposing on the upper surfaces of the rails 70 and 71, the latter being laterally adjustable for shanks of different diameter.
The parts move downthe track 24 by gravity, one in contact with another and are indexed for movement with the guideway 30, one after another, by the detent piston 105 both in an advancing sense (switch 308 closed at the end of the return stroke of the piston) and reversing sense (switch 327 closed at the end of the advance stroke of the piston).
When the piston startsits forward stroke to move a part past the various caliper stations, switch 308 is set on contact 308A; and in the event that anyone of the caliper switches is operated, electromagnet 245 and its holding relay 313 are concurrently energized to set and hold gate 31 in its reject position.
The caliper switches may be accurately adjusted to their set positions by using the set-up switch 307 as above-described. Once set-up has been rigorously gauged, switch 307 is moved to its position shown in FIG. 7 along with switch 330.
The caliper devices, by virtue of the leverage involved and positioning through micrometer adjustment, are accurate to the third decimal place.
Hence while I have illustrated and described a preferred embodiment of the invention it is to be understood that this is capable of variation and modification.
For example, electronic sensors can be used to detect on size, oversize and undersize as well, and a double solenoid at the discharge station can be used to operate a gate (split) in such fashion as to hold the gate in neutral position (for on-size) or shift it in opposite directions to separate oversize and undersize parts.
1. A machine for separating rivets, screws and similar parts which may be characterized by a shank and a head, separation being in terms of acceptable and unacceptable shank and head dimensions, and including:
a guideway along which the parts are to be fed one by one and there tested for compliance with acceptability, means for supplying parts to be fed to the guideway, collecting bins at the end of the guideway respectively assigned to the collection of acceptable and unacceptable parts, a gate at the end of the guideway under control of an electromagnet and normally occupying a stationary position in the unenergized state of the electromagnet, to deflect parts into one of the bins, said gate, in response to the field generated by the electromagnet in its energized state, being moved to a second position, where it deflects parts into the other bin, a reciprocal feeder having a forward motion for moving a part along the guideway to the gate and having a return motion incidental to feeding the next part for compliance testing, individual caliper devices in the guideway for measuring a diameter and a length of a part moved along the guideway, an electrically responsive switch associated with each caliper device and each such switch being operated when the caliper device measures unacceptability, and each switch being in series with an electromagnet to energize the electromagnet when the switch is operated.
2. A machine according to claim 1 including a holding circuit for the electromagnet, each switch when operated also being effective to engage the holding circuit, and means operated by the feeder on its return motion to disengage the holding circuit.
3. A machine according to claim 1 provided with a console presenting set-up toggle switches each in series with one of the associated switches and each in series with an indicator lamp, whereby the operator upon closing a toggle switch may test each caliper device for accuracy.
4. A machine according to claim 2 provided with a console presenting set-up toggle switches each in series with one of the associated switches and each in series with an indicator lamp, whereby the operator upon closing a toggle switch may test each caliper device for accuracy.
5. A machine according to claim 1 wherein each caliper device includes a flexibly mounted lever presenting a caliper surface disposed in the path of the part moving through the guideway, means to set the lever to a clearance position so that a part of acceptable dimension just clears said caliper surface, and the lever having an opposing surface constantly engaged by the operating contact of the associated switch.
6. A machine according to claim 5 wherein the associated switch is carried by an adjustable support, the lever also being carried by an adjustable support, first micrometer means for adjusting the switch support in opposite directions, and second micrometer means to move the lever support in opposite directions, accordingly to vary the set position of the caliper lever.
7. A machine for separating rivets, screws and similar parts which may be-characterized by a shank and a head, separation being in terms of acceptable and unacceptable shank and head dimensions, and including: a guideway along which the parts are to be fed one by one and there tested for compliance with acceptability, means for supplying parts to be fed to the guideway, collecting bins at the end of the guideway respectively assigned to the collection of acceptable and unacceptable parts, a movable gate at the end of the guideway having two positions respectively to deflect parts into one of the bins or the other, a reciprocal feeder having a forward motion for moving a part along the guideway to the gate and having a return motion incidental to feeding the next part for compliance testing, individual caliper devices in the guideway for measuring a diameter and a length of a part moved along the guideway, an electrically responsive switch associated with each caliper device and each such switch being operated when the caliper device measures unacceptability, and electrically responsive means for moving the gate when a switch is operated.
8. A machine according to claim 7 provided with a console presenting set-up toggle switches each in series with one of the associated switches and each in series with an indicator lamp, whereby the operator upon closing a toggle switch may test each caliper device for accuracy.
9. A machine according to claim 7 wherein each caliper device includes a flexibility mounted lever presenting a caliper surface disposed in the path of the part moving through the guideway, means to set the lever to a clearance position so that a part of acceptable dimension just clears said caliper surface, and the lever having an opposing surface constantly engaged by the operating contact of the associated switch.
10. A machine according to claim 9 wherein the associated switch is carried by an adjustable support, the lever also being carried by an adjustable support, first -micrometer means for adjusting the switch support in opposite directions, and second micrometer means to move the lever support in opposite directions, accordingly to vary the set position of the caliper lever.
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