Title:
Paper storage apparatus
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Paper storage apparatus is provided with friction members that are provided at opposing sides (7c) of a lifting table (7) facing a pair of guide rails (3, 4) such that the friction members (30, 31) project toward the guide rails (3, 4). When a paper (10) is moved by the lifting table (7) so that end portions of the paper (10) escape from the grooves (3a, 4a), the paper (10) slides while being in contact with the friction members (30, 31), thereby to prevent the paper (10) from being moved on the lifting table (7).



Inventors:
Hatamachi, Tadashi (Tokyo, JP)
Kikuchi, Tetsuro (Tokyo, JP)
Application Number:
10/859834
Publication Date:
12/09/2004
Filing Date:
06/02/2004
Assignee:
Kabushiki Kaisha Nippon Conlux (Tokyo, JP)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65H31/04; B65H29/46; G07D11/00; (IPC1-7): B65H29/44; B65H5/22; B65H29/46; B65H83/00; B65H85/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
BOLLINGER, DAVID H
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
HUSCH BLACKWELL LLP (CHICAGO, IL, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. An paper storage apparatus for storing sheets of paper, comprising: a pair of guide rails arranged with a predetermined space therebetween and formed with guide grooves that guide opposing end portions of a paper; a lifting table that moves into and out from the space between the pair of guide rails; and a stacker for storing the paper, wherein the paper guided into the guide grooves of the pair of guide rails is loaded and stored in the stacker by escaping the paper from the pair of guide grooves by the lifting table, characterized in that the paper storage apparatus further comprises friction means respectively disposed at opposing sides of the lifting table facing the pair of guide rails in such a manner as to project toward the guide rails, wherein, when the paper escapes from the grooves by an action of the lifting table, the paper slides while being in contact with the friction means, thereby to prevent the paper from being moved on the lifting table.

2. The paper storage apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the friction means comprises a tongue-shaped elastic member made of elastic rubber.

3. The paper storage apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the friction means comprises a tongue-shaped elastic member made of elastic rubber and a projection disposed on an upper surface of the lifting table at a position corresponding to the elastic member.

4. The paper storage apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the friction means is provided at opposing sides of the lifting table, respectively.

5. The paper storage apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the friction means is provided at a plurality of positions at opposing sides of the lifting table, respectively.

6. The paper storage apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the friction means is provided along opposing sides of the lifting table, respectively.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention relates to a paper storage apparatus for loading and storing a large number of sheets of paper such as paper money, bond certificates and corporation securities.

[0003] 2. Description of the Related Art

[0004] In a conventional paper money processing apparatus that determines whether a paper money is genuine or false and stores only genuine paper money, a paper storage apparatus is generally provided for loading and storing genuine paper money.

[0005] In this conventional paper money processing apparatus, a paper money inserted into a paper money inserting slot is conveyed along a paper money conveyance path. During the conveyance, the paper money is determined as genuine or false by a paper money determination unit.

[0006] When the inserted paper money is determined as a false one, the paper money is returned to the paper money inserting slot. When the inserted paper money is determined as a genuine one, then the paper money is further conveyed to the downstream of the paper money conveyance path and is loaded and stored in a stacker, that is, the paper storage apparatus.

[0007] FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view illustrating the main part of a conventional paper storage apparatus 1.

[0008] The conventional paper storage apparatus 1 comprises a stacker 2 for loading and storing, in a vertical direction of the drawing, a large number of sheets of paper 10 (e.g., paper money) that have been inserted through the paper money inserting slot (not shown) and determined as genuine ones; guide rails 3 and 4 formed with a pair of guide grooves 3a and 4a of a C-shaped cross section and disposed at the periphery of an opening portion 2a of the stacker 2, for guiding an inserted paper money 10 to the opening portion 2a; a stacker plate 6 that pressure-contacts with the upper faces 3b and 4b of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4; and a lifting table 7 for pushing the paper money 10 into the stacker 2 after the paper money 10 is conveyed with the opposing end portions thereof being inserted into the guide grooves 3a and 4a of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4.

[0009] The lifting table 7 is lifted toward the stacker 2 at a predetermined timing by a known elevator means (not shown) having a pantograph-shaped link mechanism provided at the lower face of the lifting table 7.

[0010] The opposing end portions of the paper money 10 that are inserted into the guide grooves 3a and 4a of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4 by a paper money conveyance means (not shown) escape from the guide grooves 3a and 4a as the lifting table 7 is lifted by the elevator means. Then, the paper money 10 is loaded and stored in the stacker 2 while the end portions thereof are fastened between a stacker plate 6 and upper faces 3b and 4b of the guide rails 3 and 4.

[0011] Referring to FIG. 10, in the conventional paper storage apparatus 1, when the lifting table 7 is moved upward as shown by the arrow, the paper money 10 whose opposing end portions are inserted into the guide grooves 3a and 4a of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4 are pushed upward. During this operation, the end portions 10a and 10b of the paper money 10 slide against a friction between side edges 7a and 7b of the lifting table 7 and upper edges 3c and 4c of the opening portion of the pair of guide grooves 3a and 4a.

[0012] In this situation, it may occur that one of the end portions 10a and 10b of the paper money 10 have a friction coefficient that is larger than that of the other end portion thereof due to the conditions of the end portions 10a and 10b such as the presence of dirt or wrinkle.

[0013] If the end portion 10b of the paper money 10 has a friction coefficient larger than that of the end portion 10a, only the end portion 10a of the paper money 10 is moved above the upper edge 3b of the guide rail 3 as shown in FIG. 11 while the other end portion 10b is stopped by the upper edge 4c of the opening portion of the guide groove 4a and therefore remains in the guide groove 4a.

[0014] In this case, when the lifting table 7 is returned to the initial position by the elevator means, the end portion 10b of the paper money 10 remains in the guide groove 4a of the guide rail 4 as shown in FIG. 12. This causes a serious problem. Namely, when a subsequently-inserted paper money is guided into the guide grooves 3a and 4a of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4, this paper money will collide against the end portion 10b of the previously-inserted paper money 10 having remained in the guide groove 4a of the guide rail 4, which may cause a paper jam in the guide rails 3 and 4. As a result, the paper money processing apparatus becomes inoperative.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0015] It is an object of the present invention to provide a paper storage apparatus that can load and store sheets of paper one after another in a stable manner.

[0016] In order to achieve the above object, the paper storage apparatus of the present invention that comprises a pair of guide rails arranged with a predetermined space therebetween and formed with guide grooves that guide opposing end portions of a paper; a lifting table that moves into and out from the space between the pair of guide rails; and a stacker -for storing the paper, wherein the paper guided into the guide grooves of the pair of guide rails is loaded and stored in the stacker by escaping the paper from the pair of guide grooves by the lifting table, is characterized in that the paper storage apparatus further comprises friction means disposed at opposing sides of the lifting table facing the pair of guide rails in such a manner as to project toward the guide rails, wherein, when the paper escapes from the grooves by an action of the lifting table, the paper slides while being in contact with the friction means, thereby to prevent the paper from being moved on the lifting table.

[0017] This and other objects and advantageous effects of the present invention will be easily confirmed by the following detailed description and accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0018] In the accompanying drawings,

[0019] FIG. 1 is a cross-sectional view illustrating the main part of the paper storage apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention;

[0020] FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view taken at the line A-A of FIG. 1;

[0021] FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view taken at the line B-B of FIG. 2;

[0022] FIG. 4 shows the fracture cross-section of the main part illustrating the operation of the paper storage apparatus according to this embodiment;

[0023] FIG. 5 shows the fracture cross-section of the main part illustrating the operation of the paper storage apparatus according to this embodiment;

[0024] FIG. 6 shows the fracture cross-section of the main part illustrating the operation of the paper storage apparatus according to this embodiment;

[0025] FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view taken at the line A-A of FIG. 1 illustrating another embodiment of the paper storage apparatus according to the present invention;

[0026] FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view taken at the line A-A of FIG. 1 illustrating another embodiment of the paper storage apparatus according to the present invention;

[0027] FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view illustrating the main part of a conventional paper storage apparatus;

[0028] FIG. 10 is a cross-sectional view of the main part illustrating the operation of the conventional paper storage apparatus;

[0029] FIG. 11 is a cross-sectional view of the main part illustrating the operation of the conventional paper storage apparatus; and

[0030] FIG. 12 is a cross-sectional view of the main part illustrating the operation of the conventional paper storage apparatus.

DESCRIPTION OF THE EMBODIMENTS

[0031] Embodiments of the paper storage apparatus according to the present invention will be described in detail.

[0032] FIG. 1 is a cross-sectional view of the main part illustrating a paper storage apparatus 20 according to an embodiment of the present invention. In FIG. 1, the same components as those of FIG. 9 are shown by the same reference numerals.

[0033] The paper storage apparatus 20 has a pair of friction means 30 and 31 of the same structure that are disposed at opposing sides of the lifting table 7 so that they are positioned to be faced with the guide rails 3 and 4, respectively.

[0034] As shown in FIG. 2 illustrating the cross section taken at the line A-A of FIG. 1, the friction means 30 and 31 are disposed at opposing sides 7c of the lifting table 7, respectively.

[0035] To describe these friction means 30 and 31, the friction means 31 will be described below.

[0036] Referring to FIG. 3 that illustrates an expanded cross section taken at the line B-B of FIG. 2, the friction means 31 includes a tongue-shaped elastic member 33 made of an elastic rubber that is engaged with a projection 7b provided at the lower face 7a of the lifting table 7. As shown in FIG. 2, the tip end 33a of the elastic member 33 is of arc shape, and is disposed so as to slightly project toward the guide rail 4 (or 3) from the side 7c of the lifting table 7.

[0037] On the upper face 7d of the lifting table where the friction means 30 and 31 are disposed, a projection 7e is formed integrally with the upper face 7d. The projection 7e serves to prevent the paper money 10 from contacting with the elastic member 33 of the friction means 30 and 31, thereby preventing a paper jam when a sheet of paper (e.g., inserted paper money 10) is guided into the pair of guide grooves 3a and 4a.

[0038] In FIG. 3, the reference numeral 7f denotes a rib for supporting the lower face of the elastic member 33 and the reference numeral 7g denotes a notch.

[0039] Next, the operations of the paper storage apparatus 20 will be described, and at the same time the structure thereof will be described in detail. Since the friction means 30 and the friction means 31 perform the same operations, the operation of the friction means 31 will be described and description regarding the operations of the friction means 30 is omitted.

[0040] In FIG. 4, the same components as those of FIG. 3 are denoted with the same reference numerals. As shown in FIG. 4, as the lifting table 7 is upwardly moved as shown by the arrow, the paper money 10 guided into the guide grooves 3a and 4a of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4 are lifted.

[0041] During this operation, the end portion 10a (10b) of the paper money 10 is curved and the lower face thereof slides while being in contact with the tip end 33a of the tongue-shaped elastic member 33 constituting the friction means 31 (30). At the same time, the tip end 33a of the elastic member 33 is curved, thus increasing the contact area therebetween.

[0042] When the tip end 33a of the tongue-shaped elastic member 33 constituting the friction means 31 is curved, the area of the tip end 33a with which the end portion 10a of the paper money 10 contacts is increased, thereby to increase a frictional force between the tip end 33a of the elastic member 33 and the end portion 10a of the paper money 10. As a result, this frictional force generated by the contact between the tip end 33a of the elastic member 33 and the end portion 10a of the paper money 10 becomes extremely larger compared with a frictional force generated by the contact between the paper money 10 and the upper edge 4c of the opening portion of the guide groove 4a.

[0043] Thus, the paper money 10 mounted on the lifting table 7 is lifted in a stable manner without being pulled by the frictional force generated by the contact between the guide groove 4a and the upper edge 4c of the opening portion, and eventually, as shown in FIG. 5, the end portions 10a and 10b of the paper money 10 are moved above the upper faces 3b and 4b of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4.

[0044] Referring to FIG. 6, when the lifting table 7 is returned to the initial position via the elevator means (not shown), the paper money 10 can be stored in the stacker 2 while the opposing end portions thereof are fastened between the upper faces 3b and 4b of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4, and the stacker plate 6.

[0045] With the above operations, a subsequently-inserted paper money can be smoothly guided into the guide grooves 3a and 4a of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4 without generating a jam caused by a collision with the previously-inserted paper money 10.

[0046] Thereafter, the subsequently-inserted paper money is stored in the stacker 2 while the opposing end portions thereof are fastened between the upper faces 3b and 4b of the pair of guide rails 3 and 4, and the previously-inserted paper money 10 positioned on the lower face of the stacker plate 6 in the stacker 2 by the same operations of the lifting table 7 as described above. Thus, papers subsequently-inserted can be stored in the stacker 2 in a stable manner.

[0047] Although the above embodiment as shown in FIG. 2 is provided with the friction means 30 and 31 at the end portions of the lifting table 7, the present invention is not limited to the configuration of the above embodiment. Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 7 in which the same components as those of FIG. 2 are denoted with the same reference numerals, the friction means 30 and 31 may be provided at a plurality of positions at opposing sides 7c of the lifting table 7, respectively.

[0048] Further, the present invention is not limited to the above configurations in which the friction means 30 and 31 are provided at one position or a plurality of positions at opposing sides 7c of the lifting table 7. Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 8 in which the same components as those of FIG. 2 are denoted with the same reference numerals, friction means 31 (30) made of a long tongue-shaped elastic member 33 may be provided along opposing sides 7c of the lifting table 7.

[0049] As described above, the paper storage apparatus according to the present invention includes the friction means that are provided at opposing sides of the lifting table facing the pair of guide rails and that are projected toward the guide rails, respectively. With the friction means, when a paper is lifted by the lifting table so that the end portions of the paper escape from the grooves of the guide rails, the paper slides while being in contact with the friction means so that the paper is prevented from being moved on the lifting table. As a result, the end portions of the inserted paper money can escape from the guide grooves of the guide rails in a stable manner. This prevents a paper jam caused by a collision between a previously-inserted paper money and a subsequently-inserted paper money in the guide rails. In this way, the present invention provides a paper storage apparatus that can load and store each paper in a stable manner.