What is claimed is
1. A method of correcting fore or aft inclination of bags having protrusions extending laterally from each side of the same as they move serially, and in vertical upright fashion, along a given longitudinal conveyor path, said method comprising:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
The present invention relates to devices for correcting the inclination of the bags fed in an automation system, and particularly to a device for correcting the inclination of the bags containing powder, liquid, or solid material and closed by a laterally projecting fastener.
In an automation process, a bag jammed with powders or the like is fed to a station of the automation system where the bag opening is heat sealed near the fastener. In such a process, the bag is required to be positioned in the proper position so that the seal occurs at the right position of the bag.
In the prior art, inclination of the bag on the conveyor was not corrected automatically, but manually. Such inclination often occurs in a heat sealer, fastener closing process, stamping process and the like which is automated.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
The present invention provides a device which automatically corrects the inclination of inclined bags in an automation conveyor line.
The present invention corrects the inclination of the inclined bags carrying fasteners by utilizing a pair of inclined belts for hanging the bag onto the conveyor.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING
FIGS. 1A and 1B are plan views showing the rotating portions of the device in accordance with two embodiments of the present invention;
FIGS. 2A, 2B, 2C and 2D are side views thereof, wherein A and B correspond to FIG. 1A, and C and D correspond to FIG. 1B;
FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the embodiment of FIG. 1A seen from the inlet side thereof; and
FIG. 4 is a side view showing the situation where various inclinations of the bags with fasteners are corrected at the belt portion of the devices of FIGS. 1 through 3.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
Referring to FIGS. 1B and 2D, a pair of belt pulleys 1,1 and 2,2 are provided for holding a pair of belts 6,6 which are of proper material and shape. Between the pulleys, tension rollers 3, 4, 5, . . . 9 are provided with the belts 6,6 for forming a bag guiding portion. Necessarily, the belts 6,6 are adequately spaced from each other. The belts 6,6 may be made of rubber, spiral springs, or plastics, but from the view point of endurance and function or effect the spiral spring is preferred relatively. The preference for the spiral spring is because the spiral spring has good tension and a low friction coefficient. Since the belts hold the bags therebetween at the portion just below the fastener 10 provided on the bag and hang the bag at the fastener portion due to its lateral protuberance, it is required that the bag slips down to the position where the fastener is brought into engagement with the upper edge of the hanging belts. Therefore, the bags should slip freely between the belts but should stop at the fastener portion due to the tension of the belts. From such viewpoint, the spiral spring is best suited as the material for the belts. On the other hand, in the case when rubber forms the belts, although it has enough tension and can hold the bag, the bag will not easily slip down the same due to its high friction coefficient. If the both belts are spaced relatively far in order to make the bag slip easily, the bag will not stop at the fastener portion with certainty. Thus, the spring is better fitted for the belts than rubber in design and in function or effect.
The position of the pulleys and tension rollers is fixed as shown in FIG. 2 so that the guide-in pulleys 1,1 are at the lowest level, the tension rollers 3,4,5 . . . are at a higher level in this order, and the other pulleys 2 are at the highest level. According to the variation in level of the pulleys and rollers, the bags which are brought into the roller assembly, are hung by the fastener portion 10 on the belts 6,6 so that the inclination of the bag is corrected, as shown in FIG. 4D. The inclination of the belts and the shape of the center line of the belts may be a straight line or arcuate curve or any other shape as long as they are able to correct the inclination of the bag. The shape of the center line of the belts should be horizontal, at least at its highest portion, for final correction of the inclination of the bag.
The spacing between the belts may be variably controlled. One example for controlling the spacing is shown in FIG. 3, wherein supporting plates 12 are able to be shifted by unscrewing the controlling screws 13 which bolt the supporting plates 12 to the fixed plates 11. The level of the belts at the inlet of the device are set lower than the level of the fastener of the bag. The linear speed of the belts should be equal to or lower than that of the feeding and sealing mechanism 8 to which the above-described inclination correcting device is adapted. That is because, if the speed of the belts is faster than that of the mechanism to which the bags are fed, the bags will jam at the discharge end of the device and may possibly be sealed together.
The embodiments shown in FIGS. 2C and 4B and 4C are constructed so that the belts of the device are at a lower level than the belts of the end mechanism. FIG. 4B shows an embodiment of the device wherein the mechanism to which the device is adapted is a sealing apparatus for sealing the opening portion of the bag. FIG. 4C shows an embodiment of the device in accordance with the present invention wherein the mechanism to which the device is adapted is a fentening apparatus for closing the opening of the bag at the fastener of the belts thereof.
In FIGS. 1A, 2A, 2B and 4A the devices shown are directly mounted or related to the bag treating mechanism and such that the belts 6 are integral with the feed belts of the mechanism as shown at 7 in FIG. 1A.
Thus the invention and its advantages will be understood from the foregoing description.