Title:
Paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting a paper-feeding angle applied in an electronic apparatus is provided. The electronic apparatus includes a casing. The paper feeding mechanism is used for feeding a piece of paper into the casing. The paper feeding mechanism includes a tray and an elastomer. The tray is rotatably connected to the casing. The elastomer is disposed in the tray and reaches the casing for supporting the tray. The elastomer is deformed according to the paper load, and drives the tray to rotate with respect to the casing, so that the paper-feeding angle is automatically adjusted.



Inventors:
Tsai, Chih-jen (Taitung, TW)
Application Number:
11/483717
Publication Date:
01/18/2007
Filing Date:
07/11/2006
Assignee:
Avision Inc.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65H1/00
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Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
GONZALEZ, LUIS A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BIRCH STEWART KOLASCH & BIRCH, LLP (Falls Church, VA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting a paper-feeding angle used in an electronic apparatus, wherein the electronic apparatus comprises a casing, the paper feeding mechanism is used for feeding a piece of paper into the casing, and the paper feeding mechanism comprises: a tray rotatably connected to the casing; and an elastomer disposed in the tray and reaching the casing for supporting the tray, wherein the elastomer is deformed according to the paper load and drives the tray to rotate with respect to the casing, so that the paper-feeding angle is automatically adjusted.

2. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 1, wherein the paper feeding mechanism comprises: a connector disposed on one side of the tray for mounting the tray on the casing.

3. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 2, wherein the electronic apparatus further comprises: a rotary spindle disposed on the casing, wherein the connector is rotatably connected to the rotary spindle.

4. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 3, wherein the tray includes a detachable structure, and when the connector is dismounted from the rotary spindle, the tray is detached from the casing.

5. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 2, wherein the tray comprises: a top plate having a first surface on which the paper is placed, wherein the first surface is parallel to the paper; and a side plate having a second surface, wherein the second surface is deflected and connected to the first surface, and one end of the elastomer is projected from the second surface.

6. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 5, wherein the tray further comprises a recess disposed on the second surface and equipped with a bottom surface, and the other end of the elastomer is disposed on the bottom surface.

7. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 6, wherein the tray further comprises a positioning piece projected from the bottom surface, and the elastomer is connected to the positioning piece.

8. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 5, wherein the casing has a casing surface, the paper-feeding angle is defined as the contained angle between the extending line of the casing surface and the first surface, when the paper load becomes heavy, the elastomer is compressed to expand the paper-feeding angle larger, and when the paper load becomes light, an elastic restoring force of the elastomer is applied to contract the paper-feeding angle smaller.

9. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 1, wherein the elastomer includes a compression spring.

10. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 1 wherein the elastomer includes an elastic plate.

11. The paper feeding mechanism according to claim 1, wherein the elastomer includes a torsional spring.

Description:

This application claims the benefit of Taiwan application Serial No. 94123971, filed Jul. 14, 2005, the subject matter of which is incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates in general to a paper feeding mechanism, and more particularly to a paper feeding mechanism capable of adjusting the paper-feeding angle.

2. Description of the Related Art

With the advance in science and technology, electronic apparatuses with paper feeding mechanism, such as scanners, printers, facsimile machines and copiers, have become an indispensable appliance to modern people in their everyday life and have gained a wider popularity in both the household sector and the business sector in recent years. The main function of the paper feeding mechanism is to feed the documents into the electronic apparatus, so that the contents of the document are scanned, copied, stored or transmitted to a remote end.

The paper feeding mechanism includes a tray, a casing and a paper-feeding spindle. A paper-feeding slot is formed between the tray and the casing. The paper placed on the tray slides into the paper-feeding slot by gravity, enabling the upper-most paper to contact the paper-feeding spindle. Since the surface of the paper-feeding spindle is not slippery, the contacted paper is fed into the casing to be copied or scanned by the electronic apparatus when the paper-feeding spindle rotates.

According to the prior arts, the tray of the paper feeding mechanism is normally fixed on the paper-feeding slot. The contained angle between the tray and the casing is fixed. When the paper slides into the paper-feeding slot by gravity, the contact between the paper and the paper-feeding spindle varies with the amount of the paper and the height of the paper pile. The problem of multiple feed or miss feed would arise when the contact between the paper and the paper-feeding spindle is too tight or too loose.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is therefore an object of the invention to provide a paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle to resolve the problems of multiple feed and miss feed.

The invention achieves the above-identified object by providing a paper feeding mechanism used in an electronic apparatus. The paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting a paper-feeding angle is provided. The paper feeding mechanism is used for feeding a piece of paper into the casing of the electronic apparatus, including a tray and an elastomer. The tray is rotatably connected to the casing. The elastomer is disposed in the tray and reaches the casing for supporting the tray. The elastomer is deformed according to the paper load and drives the tray to rotate with respect to the casing, so that the paper-feeding angle is automatically adjusted.

Other objects, features, and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following detailed description of the preferred but non-limiting embodiments. The following description is made with reference to the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a decomposition diagram of a paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle according to a first embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a 3-D rear view showing the paper feeding mechanism of FIG. 1 disposed in the casing of an electronic apparatus;

FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of an electronic apparatus capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle when the paper load is light according to the first embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the electronic apparatus of FIG. 3 when the paper load is heavy;

FIG. 5 is a decomposition diagram of a paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle according to a second embodiment of the invention; and

FIG. 6 is a decomposition diagram of a paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle according to a third embodiment of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting a paper-feeding angle of the invention adopts an elastomer incorporated with a rotary tray. When the elastomer is deformed, the tray is driven to rotate so that the paper-feeding angle is adjusted automatically. The paper feeding mechanism of the invention is used in an electronic apparatus, such as a scanning device or an outputting device with scanning, printing, faxing or copying functions.

First Embodiment

Referring to FIG. 1 and FIG. 2. FIG. 1 is a decomposition diagram of a paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle according to a first embodiment of the invention. FIG. 2 is a 3-D rear view showing the paper feeding mechanism of FIG. 1 disposed in the casing of an electronic apparatus. The paper feeding mechanism 100 capable of automatically adjusting angle is used for feeding paper into a casing 200. The casing 200 includes a casing surface 200a and a rotary spindle 210. The rotary spindle 210 is disposed on the casing surface 200a. The paper feeding mechanism 100 includes a tray 110 and an elastomer 121. The tray 110 rotatably connected to the casing 200 includes a top plate 112 and a side plate 115. The top plate 112 has a first surface 112a on which the paper is placed. The first surface 112a is parallel to the paper. The side plate 115 has a second surface 115a. The second surface 115a is deflected and connected to the first surface 112a. The paper feeding mechanism 100 further includes a connector 116 disposed on the side plate 115 for connecting the tray 110 to the rotary spindle 210 of the casing 200. The elastomer 121 is disposed in the tray 110 and reaches the casing 200 for supporting the tray 110.

The tray 110 is flexibly connected to the casing 200 via the connector 116. One end of the elastomer 121 reaches the casing surface 200a but is not fixed on the casing surface 200a. Therefore, when the connector 116 is detached from the rotary spindle 210, the tray 110 can be dismounted from the casing 200. Moreover, the rotary spindle 210 is designed to be a circular rod, so that the connector 116 can rotate smoothly around the rotary spindle 210 to drive the tray 110 to rotate. When the tray 110 rotates around the rotary spindle 210, the first surface 112a also rotates with respect to the casing surface 200a.

As shown in FIG. 1, the tray 110 of the first embodiment further includes a recess 118 and a positioning piece 119. The recess 118 disposed on the second surface 115a has a bottom surface. The other end of the elastomer 121 is connected to the positioning piece 119 and contacts the bottom surface of the recess 118. In the first embodiment, the elastomer 121 is exemplified by a compression spring, but the invention is not limited thereto.

Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4. FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of an electronic apparatus capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle when the paper load is light according to the first embodiment of the invention. FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the electronic apparatus of FIG. 3 when the paper load is heavy. The electronic apparatus capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle includes a casing 200 and a paper feeding mechanism 100 (as shown in FIG. 1). A paper-feeding angle θ is defined as a contained angle between the extending line of the casing surface 200a and the first surface 112a. The heavier the paper load is, the larger the paper-feeding angle θ will be consequently. The lighter the paper load is, the smaller the paper-feeding angle θ will be consequently. Several pieces of paper are placed on the first surface 112a. The paper load is carried by the tray 110. The paper is driven to move as the tray 110 rotates around the rotary spindle 210 of FIG. 2. One end of the elastomer 121 reaches the casing surface 200a, while the other end reaches the tray 110.

As shown in FIG. 3, when the paper is placed on the tray 110, the paper load compresses the elastomer 121 via the tray 110 until the first elastic restoring force generated by the deformed elastomer 121 balances with the paper load. Meanwhile, the paper-feeding angle θ is α.

As shown in FIG. 4, when the paper load carried by the tray 110 becomes heavier (that is, the paper load is increased), the first elastic restoring force generated by the elastomer 121 is unable to balance the downward gravity of the paper load. Therefore, the increased paper load enables the tray 110 to rotate downwardly; meanwhile, the paper load continues to compress the elastomer 121 until the second elastic restoring force generated by the deformed elastomer 121 achieves a new balance with the paper load. Meanwhile, the paper-feeding angle θ is β, where β is larger than α. That is, through the change in the elastic restoring force of the elastomer 121, the paper-feeding angle θ is expanded larger as the paper load becomes heavier, and the paper-feeding angle θ is contracted smaller as the paper load becomes lighter.

Second Embodiment

Referring to FIG. 5, a decomposition diagram of a paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle according to a second embodiment of the invention is shown. The paper feeding mechanism 300 differs from the paper feeding mechanism 100 of the first embodiment in the elastomer 151 and the side plate 155. As for remaining similar components, the same reference numbers are used and are not repeated here.

As shown in FIG. 5, the elastomer 151 of the second embodiment exemplified by an elastic plate whose one end is fixed on the side plate 155 and whose the other end reaches the casing 200 of FIG. 2. Like the compression spring 121, the elastomer 151 also has an elastic restoring force. Therefore, when the paper load changes, the downward gravity of the paper load can achieve a new balance with the elastic restoring force, thereby adjusting the paper-feeding angle θ.

Third Embodiment

Referring to FIG. 6, a decomposition diagram of a paper feeding mechanism capable of automatically adjusting paper-feeding angle according to the third embodiment of the invention is shown. The paper feeding mechanism 400 differs from the paper feeding mechanism 100 of the first embodiment in the elastomer 161 and the side plate 165. As for remaining similar components, the same reference numbers are used and are not repeated here.

As shown in FIG. 6, the elastomer 161 of the third embodiment exemplified by a torsional spring whose one end is fixed on the side plate 165 and whose the other end reaches the casing 200 of FIG. 2. Like the compression spring 121, the elastomer 161 also has an elastic restoring force. Therefore, when the paper load changes, the downward gravity of the paper load can achieve a new balance with the elastic restoring force, thereby adjusting the paper-feeding angle θ.

According to the electronic apparatus disclosed in the above embodiments of the invention, the design of the paper feeding mechanism incorporates the elastomer with the rotary tray. The elastomer used for supporting the rotary tray is deformed according to the paper load, and drives the tray to rotate with respect to the casing, so that the paper-feeding angle is automatically adjusted. Consequently, the problems of multiple feed and miss feed are resolved.

While the invention has been described by way of example and in terms of a preferred embodiment, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited thereto. On the contrary, it is intended to cover various modifications and similar arrangements and procedures, and the scope of the appended claims therefore should be accorded the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications and similar arrangements and procedures.