Title:
Apparatus for selecting coins
United States Patent 3910394


Abstract:
An apparatus to be incorporated in a automatic vending machine or the like for mechanically selecting coins particularly by detecting whether coins have a milled peripheral edge. A coin selecting annular member formed on its periphery with indentations and projections engageable with those of a genuine coin projects into a passage along which coins roll down in upright position. The selecting member is loosely and eccentrically supported on a pin fixedly disposed above the passage such that the projections substantially block part of upper portion of the passage. When a coin strikes against the selecting member, the selecting member rocks on the support pin to permit the milled edge of the coin to mesh with that of the selecting member, whereby the selecting member is substantially rotated and raised. Thus only genuine coins are allowed to pass by the selecting member. Other coins or the like are stopped in the passage by the projections of the selecting member or caused to drop thereafter. A second selecting member rotatably disposed in the rear of the selecting member has a projecting piece which projects to a greater extent than the projections on the first-mentioned selecting member and blocks part of upper portion of the passage. In this construction, the first selecting member has a lever portion which rests on the second selecting member to load the same with its weight. The first selecting member, when rotationally raised as above, frees the second selecting member from its weight, permitting the second selecting member to be rotated by striking force of a rolling coin. Accordingly, genuine coins pass by the first and second selecting members. The apparatus comprising the first and second selecting members thus assures secondary selection.



Inventors:
FUJITA TAKESHI
Application Number:
05/295987
Publication Date:
10/07/1975
Filing Date:
09/29/1972
Assignee:
DAIWA SEIKO CO., LTD.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
(IPC1-7): G07F3/02
Field of Search:
194/97R,97A,102
View Patent Images:



Foreign References:
GB332253A
GB459504A
Primary Examiner:
Knowles, Allen N.
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Armstrong, Nikaido & Wegner
Claims:
What is claimed is

1. In an apparatus for selecting coins by detecting the peripheral milled edge of the coin and the diameter of the coin wherein a passage adapted for the rolling passage of coins in an upright position is provided at its one side with a tumbling window narrower than the outer diameter of a genuine coin including the projections of the milled edge thereof characterized by a support pin disposed at one side of said passage above said window and having a circular section and an annular selecting member having a precisely circular pin bore and a milled periphery complementary to and in conformity with the milled edge of the coin and eccentrically loosely supported on said pin to permit part of the milled periphery to project from said window continuously, the milled periphery of said selecting member being meshable with the milled edge of the genuine coin when said selecting member is in its uppermost elevated position.

2. In an apparatus for selecting coins by detecting the peripheral milled edge of the coin characterized by a support pin disposed above and at one side of a passage adapted for the rolling passage of coins in an upright position, a first selecting member having an annular base portion and a precisely circular bore loosely supported at its circular bore on said support pin, the annular base portion of said selecting member having a milled periphery including at least one projection meshable with the milled edge of a genuine coin, said selecting member being so positioned as to cause the milled periphery thereof to block part of the upper portion of said passage, the milled periphery being meshable with the milled edge of the genuine coin when the base portion is in its uppermost elevated position, and a second selecting member disposed close to said first selecting member and having a stopper piece projectable into said passage to a greater extent than the milled base portion of said first selecting member, said first and second selecting members being retainable in balance with each other before coin selection with the milled portion and stopper piece thereof partially blocking said passage respectively, said first selecting member being movable out of said passage for coin selection to thereby move said second selecting member and disturb the balance between said members, said first and second selecting members being returnable to balance again after coin selection.

Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to an apparatus for mechanically selecting coins to be incorporated in an automatic vending machine or the like, more particularly to a novel apparatus for selecting coins in accordance with whether coins have a peripheral milled edge.

With means for mechanically selecting true coins generally known, true coins are selectively separated from false coins in accordance with the thickness of coin, weight of coin or by detecting the milled edge of coin.

In the case of any of these selecting means, it is required that the selecting means can be incorporated in an automatic vending machine with a minimum space. Accordingly, coins dropped into the machine may advantageously be rollingly travelled in upright position and checked for genuineness during rolling travel to effect selection. It is also required that the selection be conducted within a relatively short period of time without impeding the rolling movement of the coin while it is passed through a selecting passage in upright position.

A conventional device fo selecting coins according to the outer diameter of the coins has a striplike tumbling window at one side of the selecting passage so as to effect selection depending upon whether the outer peripheral corner of the coin will be caught on the upper frame of the window. Such selecting means fails to achieve accurate selection of coins, because a coin dropped into the selecting passage will strike against the upper face of a rail for guiding the coin and, due to the resulting counteraction, will jump or bounce within the selecting passage to perform wavelike motion without travelling straight. For this reason, it may be attempted to effect selection after jumping or bouncing has been remedied, but this requires an elongated window to render the selecting device greater in its entirety. The foregoing requirement can not be fulfilled therefore.

In addition, since the selecting means utilizing the tumbling window performs selection by checking the outer peripheral corner of the coin, it is impossible to conduct reliable selection for coins whose peripheral corner has been worn out due to a long period of use.

Because of these drawbacks, there is provided a device of the complex type comprising means for selecting coins according to the coin diameter in combination with means for selecting according to the thickness of weight of coins or some other means, but various modes of selecting operations involved mitigate the rolling force of coin, require a longer time for selection and render the device more complex, making it impossible to obtain an efficient selector at a low cost.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides an apparatus for selecting coins by checking whether coins have an outer peripheral milled edge which fulfils the requirement described and is free of problems and drawbacks heretofore experienced.

An object of this invention is to provide an apparatus which is compact in its entirety and capable of selecting genuine coins easily and accurately within a short period of selecting time.

Another object of this invention is to provide an apparatus wherein wavelike motion of the dropped-in coin due to its jumping and bouncing within the selecting passage is suppressed so as to eliminate inaccuracy of coin selection resulting from the wavelike motion and need to elongate the selecting passage.

Another object of this invention is to provide an apparatus wherein a selecting member is adapted to be positioned not above the outer peripheral corner of the coin but immediately above the outer peripheral face thereof so that coins whose peripheral corner is worn out or damaged can be checked for the selection of genuine coins easily and accurately.

Another object of this invention is to provide an apparatus including a first selecting member and a second selecting member arranged in series in corelationship so as to assure more reliable selection of true coins dropped into the apparatus.

Another object of this invention is to provide an apparatus wherein when the selecting members have performed their function, they can be returned, due to gravity, to the original position instantaneously and automatically for the subsequent selecting operation.

Still another object of this invention is to provide an apparatus for selecting coins by detecting the outer peripheral milled edge thereof which apparatus is also capable of selecting coins in accordance with the outer diameter of the coins.

In order to fulfil the foregoing objects, the apparatus of this invention includes a selecting passage defined by the inner walls of a pair of front and rear side walls disposed in opposing relation and the upper face of a rail member fixed to one of the side plates and inclined in one direction.

FIxedly positioned above the selecting passage is a support pin on which is supported a selecting member in rockable manner, the selecting member being disposed between the inner walls of the side walls and positioned exactly above the rail member.

The selecting member is an annular member formed on its peripheral face with indentations and projections meshable with the milled edge of the true coin and has a pin bore having a greater diameter than the support pin. The selecting member is eccentrically supported on the support pin, with the pin loosely extending through the pin bore, with the result that the projections substantially block part of upper portion of the selecting passage.

When a coin strikes against the selecting member while rollingly travelling under the inertial force, the rolling force and the resulting striking force rock the selecting member on the support pin, permitting the indentations and projections of the coin to mesh with those of the selecting member, whereby the selecting member is rotated on the pin and raised to reach the uppermost position, where the member permits a true coin to pass through the passage.

According to another embodiment, there is provided, to the rear of the selecting member, a rotatably supported second selecting member from which extends a projecting piece that projects to a greater extent than the projections on the first-mentioned selecting member. In this embodiment, the first selecting member has a rearwardly extending lever portion integrally formed therewith. The lever portion rests on the upper face of the second selecting member to load the same with its weight.

The first selecting member, when rotationally moved upward, frees the second selecting member from its weight, permitting the second selecting member to be rotated under the striking force of the rolling coin. Consequently, the projecting piece is pushed up to allow only a true coin to pass through the passage.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

These and other objects, features and advantages of this invention will become more apparent from the following description with reference to accompanying drawings showing embodiments of this invention for illustrative purposes only, in which:

FIG. 1 is a front view of a selector embodying the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a sectional view taken along the line 2--2 in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3-I is a front view showing a principal embodiment of the present invention and FIG. 3-II is a sectional view taken along the line 3--3 in FIG. 3-I, FIGS. 3-I and 3-II showing the embodiment before a selecting operation;

FIG. 4-I is a front view showing the embodiment during the selecting operation;

FIG. 4-II is a sectional view taken along the line 4--4 in FIG. 4-I;

FIGS. 5-I and 5-II are enlarged views showing the principal parts of embodiment of this invention, more specifically a coin and a selecting member in meshing engagement;

FIGS. 6-I and 6-II are front views showing another useful embodiment of this invention before and after the selecting operation respectively, this embodiment being provided with second selecting means;

FIGS. 7-I and 7-II are front views corresponding to FIG. 3-I and showing two modified embodiments respectively; and

FIGS. 8-I and 8-II are front views corresponding to FIG. 6-I and showing two modified embodiments.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring to the drawings, FIGS. 1 and 2 show the appearance of a coin selector including an apparatus of the present invention. The drawings show a coin inlet 1, tumbling window 2, true coin outlet 3 and false coin outlet 4. The true coin drops in through the coin inlet 1 and rolls in upright position along a selecting passage 5 as indicated by the arrow in FIG. 1 toward the outlet 3 while being subjected to selection.

The passage 5 is defined by front and rear side plates 8 and 8 and a rail member 9. The side plates 8 serve as a selector base and adapted to be opened and closed about a pivot 7 on which a spring 6 is wound. The rail member 9 is fixedly positioned below the tumbling window 2. As shown in FIG. 2, the passage 5 is so designed that both side plates 8 and 8 are spaced apart by such a distance as to permit the coin to roll down in upright position and are retained in the predetermined spaced relation under the action of the spring 6. Thus a coin dropped in through the inlet 1 against the upper face of the rail member 9 inclined in one direction subsequently rolls down toward the outlet 3 due to inertial force.

For this purpose, one end of the rail member 9 extends to a position immediately below the inlet 1, with the other end thereof extending further rightward from the window 2 as seen in FIG. 1. The upper face of the rail member 9 is in parallel to the upper edge 2a of the window 2, the distance therebetween being slightly smaller than the outer diameter of the true coin.

The apparatus of this invention is provided, at an intermeidate portion of the selecting passage 5, with a selecting member for checking whether coins have a milled edge or not on its outer periphery. A principal example of such arrangement will be illustrated with reference to FIGS. 3 and 4 wherein the selecting member is disposed in the vicinity of the tumbling window 2 by utilizing one of the side plates 8 and 8.

The selecting member 10 is in the form of a precisely circular iron ring formed on its outer periphery with indentations 12 and projections 12a which are identical in pitch and shape to indentations 11 and projections 11a which are usually formed on the outer periphery of a genuine coin C. The selecting member 10 has a pin bore 13 which is smooth-surfaced.

The selecting member 10 is disposed in position by utilizing one of the side plates 8 formed with the tumbling window 2.

More specifically, a support pin 14 such as a screw pin having a flange 14a and threaded portion 14b extends through the side plate 8 at a position slightly above the upper edge 2a of the window 2 and is secured by a nut. To support the member 10, the pin 14 extends through the pin bore 13.

Since the pin bore 13 of the selecting member 10 has a greater diameter than the stem of the support pin 14, while the flange 14a is greater in diameter than the pin bore 13, the selecting member 10 can be eccentrically supported on the pin 14 with play as apparent in FIG. 3, with the result that the projections 12a project from the upper edge 2a of the window 2 to usually block part of upper portion of the selecting passage 5.

As illustrated in FIG. 4, the coin C rolls on the upper face of the rail member 9 in an upright position and comes into striking contact with the selecting member 10. If the coin C is a genuine coin, the resulting impact rocks the selecting member 10 and the indentations 11 and projections 11a come into meshing engagement with those 12 and 12a of the member 10 as if in the case of gears. Consequently, the member 10 and coin 10 begin to rotate in opposite directions. Thus, the selecting member 10 is raised gradually.

The amount of play of the selecting member 10 at its pin bore 13 relative to the support pin 10 is such that when the selecting member 10 is raised to its uppermost position as illustrated in FIG. 4, the true coin C can pass through the passage where the selecting member 10 is disposed. This assures that after the member 10 has been raised to the uppermost position, the coin and the member 10 will still rotate in opposite directions through the meshing engagement between their milled edges, whereby the coin is selected as acceptable.

The coin C may strike against the selecting member 10 with the projection 12a coming into contact with the projection 11a as shown in FIG. 5-I, which will possibly result in unsatisfactory meshing engagement and therefore inaccurate selection. However, according to this invention, the selecting member 10 having the pin bore 13 which is greater in diameter than the support pin 14 is eccentrically supported on the pin 14 with a predetermined amount of play, so that when the projections 12a and 11a contact with each other as shown in FIG. 5-I, the rolling and striking force of the coin C slightly raises the selecting member 10, permitting fitting engagement between the milled edges 11, 11a and 12, 12a, followed by rotation of the coin and the member 10 in opposite directions as in gear meshing. As a result, the coin C is selected as acceptable as shown in FIG. 5-II, inaccurate selection thus being eliminated.

If a counterfeit coin having no corrugations on its outer periphery but having the same diameter as the outer diameter (which refers to a maximum diameter of the coin) of the true coin C strikes against the front of the selecting member 10, the resulting impact will raise and rotate the member 10. However, the member 10 when raised to the uppermost position defines the passage for the true coin having a milled edge and is prevented from further rotation by being held between the support pin 14 and coin, with the result that the projections 12a of the member 10 substantially block the upper portion of the passage 5, holding the counterfeit coin having no peripheral corrugations between the projections 12a and the rail member 9. The selecting member 10 therefore stops the coin by its front face.

Coins C' having a greater diameter than the true coin C are stopped by the front face of the selecting member 10 irrespective of whether they are formed with a peripheral milled edge, because the selecting member 10 when brought to the uppermost position will then be stopped against rotation by being clamped between the pin 14 and coin C' as seen in FIG. 4-I, the member 10 at this position defining the space which permits passage of the true coin C.

Coins with or without a milled edge and having a smaller diameter than the true coin C are pushed toward a tumbling window 2 by a pusher arm 15 attached to the side plate 8 as seen in FIGS. 3-II and 4-II, tumbled from the window 2 as seen in FIG. 4-II, derailed from the rail member 9 to drop automatically. For this purpose, the pusher arm 15 is pivotable supported at 16 on the side plate 8 and fixedly provided with a weight 17, with its distal end 15a pushed into the selecting passage 5 all the time and adapted to be in contact with the front or rear of the coin C. Further as shown in FIGS. 3-II and 4-II, the front wall of the rail member 9 is formed with a slanting face 9a to permit the tumbled coin C' to drop smoothly. The window 2 is provided with a coin receiver 2b and a coin discharge lever 2c which is formed by bending one side wall 8 toward the other side wall 8 as already known.

The coin C which has been selected as acceptable rolls down and drops through the true coin outlet 3 shown in FIG. 1 under the inertial force, while the counterfeit coin C' stopped in front of the selecting member 10 is pushed by the lever 2c and drops through the outlet 4 by opening the side plates 8 and 8 pivotally about the pin 7 against the spring 6. The selecting member 10 is then automatically returned due to gravity as illustrated in FIG. 3 and made ready for a selecting operation.

It is noted that the coin dropped in through the inlet 1, when striking the rail member 9, performs a wavelike motion B as indicated in FIG. 3 due to the resulting counteraction.

The wavelike motion B is suppressed by providing the selecting member 10 as close as possible to the inlet 1 to cause the coin to strike against the member 10. This arrangement renders the striplike window 2 short to the greatest possible extent and consequently makes the selector compact in its entirety.

The embodiment shown in FIGS. 6-I and 6-II is adapted for a secondary selection. More specifically, to the rear of the selecting member 10 there is provided a second selecting member 18 which is mounted coaxially, but not eccentrically, on a support pin 19 in rotatable manner. The selecting member 18 includes at its under side a projecting piece 20 which projects substantially to a greater extent than the projections 12a on the first selecting member 10. The projecting piece 20 has a slanting front face 20a.

The slanting face 20a serves not to mitigate the rolling force of the coin C and the projecting piece 20 participates in the secondary selection.

The second selecting member 18 is formed in its rear portion with a sectorlike notch 21 into which extends the front end of a stopper 23 fixedly mounted on a support pin 22. Thus the range of rotation of the member 18 is limited by the stopper 23 and the upper and lower walls of the notch 21. As seen in FIG. 6-I, the engagement of the upper wall 21a with the stopper 23 substantially determines the amount of projection of the projecting piece 20 which partially blocks the passage 5. Engagement of the lower wall 21b with the stopper 23 clears the passage 5 of the projecting piece 20.

The second selecting member 18 is formed at its upper side with a flat face 24, on which a lever portion 25 of the first selecting member 10 rests. Thus, the second selecting member 18 is loaded with the first selecting member 10. The lever portion 25 extends from the first selecting member 10 rearwardly thereof and integrally therwith and has a stepped portion 25a in its lower portion.

The rotational upward movement of the first selecting member 10 already described frees the second selecting member 18 from the weight of the member 10. After passing under the first selecting member 10, the coin C strikes against the projecting piece 20 of the second selecting member 18 and pushes up the same with the striking force, whereby the secondary selection is achieved. The embodiment of FIGS. 6-I and 6-II is advantageous in that should the first selecting member 10 accidentally permit the passage of a false coin which is milled on its outer periphery and is similar to the true coin in pitch of the corrugations and outer diameter, the projecting piece 20 projecting largely will stop the false coin to effect the secondary selection.

In this embodiment, the rotation of the first selecting member 10 is limited by a stopper 27 fixedly mounted on a support pin 26 positioned to the front of the member 10, the arrangement being such that when the lever portion 25 comes into contact with the stopper 27 as illustrated in FIG. 6-II, the first selecting member 10 reaches the uppermost position. The front end 27a of the stopper 27 which is positioned slightly above the upper edge 2a of the window regulates the wavelike motion B of the coin.

As shown in FIGS. 7-I, 7-II, 8-I and 8-II, it is possible to provide a rotor 29 coaxially with a support pin 28 in opposing relation to the first selecting member 10, the rotor 29 being formed on its periphery with indentations 30 and projections 30a similar to those on the member 10 and so disposed that the proejctions 30a project from the upper face of the rail member 9. In this construction, it is necessary to cut out the rail member 9 as at 31 and to position the rotor 29 in the cutout 31 with a pin 32 rotatably supporting the rotor.

Furthermore, instead of the rotor 29, it is possible to form indentations 33 and projections 33a directly on the upper face of the rail member 9. According to these two types of construction, the milled edge can be checked at upper and lower positions.

Although several embodiments have been described with reference to the drawings, it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that various modifications and alterations such as described can be made. For instance, the indentations 12 and projections 12a may be formed in part of the periphery of the selecting member 10.

Thus the present invention is not limited only to the detailed disclosure herein given and illustrated but includes the desired changes and modifications within the scope of the invention as set forth in the appended claims.