United States Patent 3791574

A receptacle for receiving thrown coins or tokens is provided with opposed walls which curve inwardly and downwardly until they reach a narrow part in which the walls are spaced apart by the thickness of a coin, at which point they become parallel. Inclined guide means at the bottom of the walls directs the coins toward a testing device above a money box. A rod positioned just above the narrow part diverts the coins into a position nearly parallel to the walls as they approach the narrow part.

Application Number:
Publication Date:
Filing Date:
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
International Classes:
G07D9/00; G07F1/00; G07F1/02; (IPC1-7): B65G11/16
Field of Search:
194/97 133
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3142370Automatic coin collector1964-07-28Otten
2913098Core-loader for winding machine1959-11-17Zellinsky et al.
2896761N/A1959-07-28Grant et al.
1776251Feed hopper for coin-counting machines1930-09-23Donnellan

Foreign References:
Primary Examiner:
Reeves, Robert B.
Assistant Examiner:
Scherbel, David A.
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Brisebois & Kruger
Parent Case Data:

This application is a continuation-in-part of Ser. No. 824,517, filed May 14, 1969, now abandoned.
What is claimed is

1. A device for receiving coins and the like having a predetermined thickness and diameter, said device comprising a receptacle having a relatively narrow lower portion and a relatively wide upper portion dimensioned and open to simultaneously admit a plurality of coins regardless of the angular positions of said coins, said receptacle being defined by a plurality of walls, only two of which are downwardly converging while defining said upper portion, the inner surfaces of said two walls being generated by parallel generatrices and curving smoothly and gradually to permit the free flow of coins therebetween as said walls approach each other and become parallel when spaced by a distance only slightly greater than the thickness of one of said coins and thereafter continuing as plane surfaces downwardly in a substantially vertical direction and parallel to each other to define opposite sides of said lower receptacle portion, at least one guide having a stationary inclined surface extending transversely between said walls and positioned entirely within said lower portion, and an orifice at the bottom of said guide having a width in a plane parallel to said two walls which is greater than that of one of said coins but less than that of said lower receptacle portion at the top of said guide the lower part of at least one of said walls being formed with slots therein, and said device comprising means for blowing air through said slots.


This invention relates to a coin or token controlled machine in which the coins or tokens are simply thrown into a receptacle which directs them to testing means to determine whether they are of the type which the machine is designed to accept, and then actuates a release which permits the apparatus to carry out the desired operation.

The invention may advantageously be applied to the coin receiving apparatus of toll booths, into which drivers throw coins when they want to enter a toll road or a parking lot, for example.

The present invention is particularly directed to a receptacle which is simple and inexpensive to make and which has the advantage of directing the coins or tokens to an exact spot at which they may be introduced into the device for testing them and providing a signal or the like which initiates the desired operation.

The present invention relates to a device of the aforesaid type which is characterized by the fact that it comprises a receptacle for the coins or tokens having a cavity provided with an opening for receiving the coins or tokens, said cavity being connected to the lower part of the receptacle, which is formed by two surfaces generated by parallel generatrices which progressively approach each other until they become parallel and are spaced by a distance substantially equal to the thickness of a coin or token At least one guide member is mounted between said surfaces so as to laterally displace the coins or tokens and lead them to a receiver mounted beneath said receptacle.

Such an arrangement has, however, certain disadvantages, when large thin tokens are used, as is common in the case of parking lots. Such tokens sometimes remain balanced across the two sheets at the top of the portion of the device in which said sheets are parallel but spaced by only the thickness of a coin. This is especially true when the tokens are made of a relatively light, resilient material.

Consequently, in a preferred embodiment of the invention each of said two surfaces comprises, between said cavity and its lower end, and intermediate portion substantially parallel to the other of said surfaces and spaced therefrom by a distance slightly greater than the diameter of a coin or token. A rigid substantially horizontal rod or the like, parallel to said surfaces, is mounted in this intermediate portion.

As a consequence of this arrangement it is impossible for a token or coin to remain in equilibrium across the two surfaces in the upper part of the device, since these two surfaces are separated by a distance greater than the diameter of a coin until it strikes the rod, and the rod diverts the coin to a position more nearly parallel to than across them.

In one embodiment the rod may be spaced from both surfaces, but nearer one than the other. In another embodiment, the rod lies against, or may even form part of, one of said surfaces.

The receptacle according to the invention may be made of metal plates, for example, which are bent into the shape described above. The guides may consist of spacers which separate the two surfaces having parallel generatrices.

As will be seen, a coin or token introduced into the receptacle is positioned in two distinct steps. First, the two surfaces having parallel generatrices guide the coin or token into a given vertical plane. Then the coins or tokens slide or roll on the guide members which position them laterally to direct them into the receiving means.

In an improved embodiment of the invention a blower is provided to deliver air to the lower part of the receptacle so as to constantly driveout of the receptacle any light material which may inadvertently be introduced thereinto, and which might interfere with the operation of the device.

For example a blower may direct compressed air into slots in the lateral walls of at least one of the surfaces having parallel generatrices so as to drive out of the receptacle such items as paper, bits of cardboard, cigarette butts, etc., which sometimes fall into coin-operated devices.

In order that the invention may be better understood, a preferred embodiment of the invention will now be described purely by way of illustration and example, with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a first embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a schematic sectional view of the device shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along the line III--III of FIG. 2, which shows how the lower part of the receptacle positions the coins or tokens;

FIG. 4 is an elevational view of the receptacle of a second embodiment of the invention; and

FIG. 5 is a vertical sectional view taken along the line V--V of FIG. 4.

FIGS. 1-3 show a parallelopipedic casing 1 which holds the device according to the invention. This casing may be made of sheet metal, for example.

The front of the casing has an opening 2 into which the coins or tokens are thrown.

This opening 2 affords access to a receptacle 3 which is formed by two metal plates 4 and 5 rolled or bent so that their lower parts are parallel to each other at 6, but separated by a distance substantially equal to the thickness of a coin or token. The sheet 5 is connected to the casing 1 along the line 7 constituting the lower edge of the opening 2 and the sheet 4 is curved inwardly toward the back so as to form the bottom of a receptacle, the upper part of which is defined by a suitable wall 8. The sides of the receptacle are formed by suitable partitions or by the sides of the casing 1.

In the present case, the upper wall of the receptacle carries a loud-speaker 9 which makes it possible to direct instructions to a person about to place a coin or token in the receptacle, and a transparent or translucent wall portion adapted to admit light from the lamp 11.

In accordance with the invention guide members 12 are mounted between the lower ends 6 of the walls so as to direct the coins or token into the opening 13 in the box 14 in which they are tested.

When the coins or tokens are found acceptable they are directly introduced into a removable money box 15. When they are not acceptable, they are rejected through the coin return 16.

In the embodiment shown in the drawing, the lower part of the wall 4 is provided with vertical slots 17 through which a radial fan 18 driven by a motor 19 blows air in the direction of the arrow F of FIG. 2.

When a coin is thrown into the receptacle 3, it is directed by the walls 4 and 5 into a vertical position in all lower part 6 of the receptacle. At this point it comes in contact with one of the guide-members 12 and then rolls therealong into the slot 13 leading to the box 14.

The radial fan 18 produces a current of air which is evacuated through the opening 2 of the receptacle 3 and drives out all the light articles such as subway tickets, or cigarette butts which may be inadvertently dropped into the receptacle. An opening 20 covered by a grill admits air into the casing to supply the fan 18.

In the embodiment shown, the coins or tokens accepted by the machine are collected in a money box 15 closed by a padlock 21 or a closure of some other type, which is simply inserted in the bottom of the apparatus.

An opening 22 in the back of the casing 1 permits the cash box to be inserted and withdrawn. The money box is located in position 6 by angle irons 23. It is then easy to keep track of the money and tokens received by the apparatus.

It is obvious that the above embodiment has been given purely by way of example and may be modified as to detail without thereby departing from the basic principles of the invention.

In particular, it is obvious that the receptacle may have a shape other than that shown in the drawing, and the plates 4 and 5 may have other curvatures.

The back part of the plate 4 may also be made of cloth, for example, so as to avoid bouncing by the coins and tokens thrown thereinto. However, experience has shown that when the receptacle is shaped as shown, almost all the coins and tokens thrown into the receptacle will reach their destination, even when the walls 4 and 5 are made of sheet metal.

The device shown in FIGS. 4 and 5 comprises a receptacle 21 having two surfaces 22 and 23 each formed from sheet metal rolled or bent so as to progressively approach each other while having their generatrices parallel. The sheet 23 on the side of the user is shorter than the sheet 22 so as to form at the front of the top an opening 24 to permit coins or tokens to be thrown therein. Two other sheets of metal 25 and 26 positioned transversely across the ends of the sheets 22 and 23 define the ends of the receptacle.

It will be seen that the two metal sheets 22 and 23 have upper parts 27 and 28 respectively which define a funnel when seen in profile. In accordance with the invention the part 27 of the sheet 22 is continued by an intermediate part 29 substantially parallel to an intermediate part 30 of the sheet 23. The distance between the parts 29 and 30 of the sheets 22 and 23 is slightly greater than the diameter of a coin such as 31. On the intermediate part 9, near its lower end, is a rod or stiff straight ridge 32, the upper edge of which is curved inwardly, and which projects from the part 29. The width of this rod 32 is such that it is spaced from the part 30 of the sheet 22 by a distance less than the diameter of a coin 31.

Beneath the rod or ridge 32 the sheet 22 approaches the sheet 23 to form a lower part 33 parallel to the lower part 34 of the sheet 23 and spaced from this part 34 by a distance such that the coins 31 are forced to assume a practically vertical position. As in the previously described embodiment, inclined coin guides 35 are positioned between the lower parts 33 and 34 of the sheets while leaving therebetween an orifice 36 adapted to permit the passage of the coin which has been guided to the orifice by the portions 33 and 34 of the sheets and the guides 35. Beneath the orifice 36 is a device 37 for checking the coins and controlling any apparatus connected therewith. When the user throws a coin 31 into the receptacle 21, this coin will strike one or the other of the upper parts 27 and 28 of the sheets 22 and 23 and will then fall in any random position into the space between the intermediate parts 29 and 30 of said sheets. If, in this space, the coin 31 is in a practically vertical plane, parallel to the sheets, it continues to fall and will naturally come between the lower parts 33 and 34 of the sheets 22 and 23. If, on the contrary, the coin 31 is, as shown in FIG. 5, in a transverse position which might stick in the zone beneath the intermediate part 29, the edge of the coin 31 will strike the rod or ridge 32 so that the coin 31 will swing in the direction of the arrow shown in broken lines into a position permitting it to slide without difficulty between the parts 33 and 34 of the sheets 22 and 23. In order to still further improve the operation of the device it is of course possible to coat the sheets 22 and 23 with a substance such as polytetrafluoroethylene, or any other substance which improves the sliding of the coins or tokens. If necessary, the receptacle may be activated by a vibrator. Of course, the shape of the surfaces of sheets 22 and 23 may be different. Thus the sheet 23 may, for example, have a lower part which approaches the opposite surface beneath the rod or longitudinal rib. The longitudinal rib may be placed at a certain distance from the surfaces while being closer to one or the other of these surfaces depending on their conformation. The rod may also be replaced by a rib formed on one or the other of the surfaces by bending or stamping or in any other suitable way.