Title:
Cassette with cable tension of pressure plate
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A banknote cassette includes a container having a spring biased pressure plate for maintaining a stack of received banknotes. A cable retraction mechanism exerts the bias force on the pressure plate and allows the displacement of the stack of banknotes when a banknote is added to the stack. Preferably, a helically wound spring cooperates with a cable reel to wind and unwind the cable as necessary and to maintain a tension force in said cable.



Inventors:
Saltsov, Leon (Thornhill, CA)
Kucherenko, Mykhaylo (Thornhill, CA)
Shvarts, Volodimir (Kiev, UA)
Onipchenko, Oleksandr (Thornhill, CA)
Application Number:
11/505971
Publication Date:
03/29/2007
Filing Date:
08/18/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65H5/22; G07D11/12
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Primary Examiner:
MORRISON, THOMAS A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Dennison Associates (Toronto, ON, CA)
Claims:
The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:

1. A banknote cassette for stacking and storing banknotes comprising a container with a closable lid, a banknote receiving slot in said container for receiving banknotes in an initial receiving arrangement, a stacking mechanism for displacing a received banknote from said initial receiving arrangement and moving the received banknote to a storage section, said storage section including a pressure plate including a bias arrangement providing a bias force urging said pressure plate towards said initial receiving arrangement and movable against said bias force to allow a banknote displaced from said initial receiving arrangement and moved to said storage section to be added to a stack of any previously displaced banknotes provided between said pressure plate and said initial receiving compartment; wherein said bias arrangement includes a cable retraction mechanism having a coil spring connected to a cable reel having a cable wound thereon; said cable retraction mechanism being connected to said pressure plate to unwind said cable from said cable reel and wind said spring as said pressure plate is displaced to accommodate a displaced banknote and to wind said cable onto said cable reel as required to maintain a tension force in said cable to provide said bias force to said pressure plate.

2. A cassette as claimed in claim 1 wherein said cable retraction arrangement has said coil spring attached to said container and an end of said cable attached to said pressure plate.

3. A cassette as claimed in claim 1 said cable retraction arrangement has said coil spring attached to said pressure plate and an end of said cable is attached to said container.

4. A cassette as claimed in claim 1 wherein said cable retraction mechanism includes one or more pulleys associated with said cable to change the direction of said cable.

5. A banknote cassette for stacking and storing banknotes comprising a container with a closable lid, a banknote receiving slot in said container for receiving banknotes in an initial receiving section of said container, a stacking mechanism for displacing a received banknote from said initial receiving section and moving the received banknote to a storage section, said storage section including a pressure plate including a pair of bias arrangements providing a bias force urging said pressure plate towards said initial receiving section and movable against said bias force to allow a banknote displaced from said initial receiving section and moved to said storage section to be added to a stack of any previously displaced banknotes provided between said pressure plate and said initial receiving section; wherein each bias arrangement includes a cable retraction mechanism having a coil spring connected to a cable reel having a cable wound thereon with said cable retraction mechanism being connected to said pressure plate to unwind said cable from said cable reel and wind said coil spring as said pressure plate is displaced to accommodate a displaced banknote and to wind said cable onto said cable reel as required to maintain a tension force in said cable to provide said bias force to said pressure plate.

6. A cassette as claimed in claim 5 wherein said pair of bias arrangements are provided on opposite sides of said pressure plate and adjacent a central position in the length of said pressure plate.

7. A cassette as claimed in claim 6 wherein each cable retraction mechanism is secured in said initial receiving section and the cable extends into said storage section and is attached to said pressure plate.

8. A cassette as claimed in claim 7 wherein each cable retraction mechanism is secured to a sidewall of said container.

9. A cassette as claimed in claim 8 wherein each cable retraction mechanism is secured centrally in said receiving section to said sidewall intermediate a length thereof.

10. A cassette as claimed in claim 7 wherein said receiving section includes opposed banknote guide members intermediate a housing of and retraction mechanism and said pressure plate; each guide member including a port arrangement adjacent a side wall of the container through which cables of the retracting mechanisms extend.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a banknote cassette and in particular relates to a compact spring bias arrangement used for providing a spring bias maintaining a stack of banknotes.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Banknote cassettes are received in a banknote acceptor and provide a storage container for receiving accepted banknotes. From time to time these banknote cassettes are removed from the banknote acceptor and a new empty cassette is inserted. Typically, the banknote cassettes include a lock mechanism to prevent unauthorized entry to the container.

For many applications it is desirable to maintain accepted banknotes in a stacked manner within the banknote cassette and the cassette is provided with a banknote receiving section for initially receiving an accepted banknote and a stacker mechanism within the cassette displaces the received banknote from the initial receiving section to a storage section. The accepted banknote, as it is moved into the storage section, is pressed against a stacked of aligned banknotes. The stack of banknote is pressed against a stop face adjacent the receiving section by a spring biased pressure plate.

The most common spring biased pressure plate includes a pressure plate which is loosely received within the cassette with side guides associated therewith in combination with two or more large compression rings which act on a back face of the pressure plate and one end of the storage compartment. These large diameter compression springs have proven to be quite acceptable for small capacity cassettes but this type of design has not proven effective with large capacity cassettes for example, banknote cassettes capable of receiving of 1,500 banknotes or more. In this case, the springs are longer in length and require considerable space. This longer size reduces the capacity of the cassette. Furthermore, because of the larger capacity of the cassette the stroke distance that the pressure plate moves within the cassette from an empty condition to a full condition is much larger and a considerable pressure differential between the empty condition and the full condition may occur. These large diameter wound springs can also undergo considerable sag due to there own weight for large stroke distances and this sag can also reduce the effective operation of the cassette. An example of a banknote cassette having this type of spring arrangement is shown in U.S. Pat. No. 6,712,352.

The present invention provides an alternative arrangement for providing an efficient spring bias to the pressure plate allowing it to function efficiently for small and large capacity cassettes.

SUMMARY OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

A banknote cassette for stacking and storing banknotes according to the present invention comprises a container with a closable lid with the container having a banknote receiving slot for receiving banknote in an initial receiving arrangement of the container. A stacking mechanism is provided within the container for displacing a received banknote from the initial receiving arrangement and moving the received banknote to a storage section. The storage section within the container includes a pressure plate including a bias arrangement providing a bias force urging the pressure plate towards the initial receiving arrangement and moveable against the bias force to allow banknotes displaced from the initial receiving arrangement and moved to the storage arrangement to be added to a stack of any previously displaced banknotes provided between the pressure plate and the initial receiving compartment. The bias arrangement includes a cable retraction mechanism having a coil spring connected to a cable reel having a cable wound thereon. The cable retraction mechanism is connected to the pressure plate to unwind the cable from the cable reel and wind the spring as the pressure is displaced to accommodate a displaced banknote and to wind the cable onto the cable reel as required to maintain a tension force in the cable to provide the bias force to said pressure plate.

According to an aspect of the invention the cable retraction arrangement has the coil spring attached to the container and an end of the cable is attached to the pressure plate.

In yet a further aspect of the invention the cable retraction arrangement has the coil spring attached to the pressure plate and an end of the cable attached to the container.

In yet a further aspect of the invention the cable retraction mechanism includes one or more pulleys associated with the cable to change the direction of the cable.

A banknote cassette for stacking and storing banknote according to a different aspect of the invention comprises a container with a closable lid with a banknote receiving slot provided in the container for receiving banknotes in an initial receiving section of the container. A stacking mechanism is provided for displacing a received banknote from the initial receiving section and moving the received banknote to a storage section. The storage section includes a pressure plate including a pair of bias arrangements providing a bias force urging the pressure plate towards the initial receiving section and moveable against the bias force to allow a banknote displaced from the initial receiving section and moved to the storage section to be added to a stack of any previously displaced banknotes provided between the pressure plate and the initial receiving section. Each bias arrangement includes a cable retraction mechanism having a coil spring connected to a cable reel having a cable wound thereon with the cable retraction mechanism being connected to the pressure plate to unwind the cable from the cable reel and wind said spring as the pressure plate is displaced to accommodate a displaced banknote and to wind the cable onto the cable reel as required to maintain a tension force in the cable to provide the bias force to the pressure plate.

According to an aspect of the invention a pair of bias arrangements are provided to opposite sides of the pressure plates and adjacent a central position in the length of the pressure plate.

According a further aspect of the invention each cable retraction mechanism is secured in the initial receiving section and the cable extends into the storage section and is attached to the pressure plate.

In a further aspect of the invention each cable retraction mechanism is secured to a side wall of the container.

In a different aspect of the invention each cable retraction mechanism is secured centrally and the receiving section to side wall intermediate a length thereof.

In a further aspect of the invention the receiving section includes opposed banknote guide members intermediate a housing of each retraction mechanism and the pressure plate. Each guide member includes a port arrangement adjacent a side wall of the container through which the cable of the retracting mechanisms extend.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The above as well as other advantages and features of the present invention will be described in greater detail according to the preferred embodiments of the present invention in which;

FIG. 1 is a sectional view through a large capacity banknote cassette;

FIG. 2 is a sectional view similar to FIG. 1 with the stacking mechanism in an extended position to add a banknote to the stack of banknotes within the cassette;

FIG. 3 is a vertical sectional view through the banknote cassette showing the stacking mechanism and an extended position corresponding to FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a vertical sectional view similar to FIG. 3 with an alternate retraction arrangement which includes an additional pulley; and

FIG. 5 is a vertical sectional view showing an alternate cable retraction arrangement which uses two pulleys.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION ACCORDING TO THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS OF THE PRESENT INVENTION IN WHICH

FIG. 1 shows a horizontal sectional view through a banknote cassette 2. FIGS. 2 and 3 show vertical sections through the banknote cassette with FIG. 3 showing an extended position of a stacking mechanism 12 used to add a banknote to the stack of banknotes 24 and FIG. 2 showing a vertical section of that.

For large capacity banknote cassettes the actual storage section 14 can be quite large and this has presented problems with respect to the controlled movement of the spring bias pressure plate 16. Various arrangements have been provided for loosely maintaining the generally vertical orientation of the pressure plate 16 for sympathetic movement as the stacking mechanism 12 moves between the extended position of FIGS. 2 and 3 and the initial retracted position of FIG. 1.

In a banknote validator an accepted banknote is provided to the banknote cassette and enters the initial receiving section 10 through the banknote receiving slot 8. Opposed guide members 40 and 42 define a slot for receiving the banknote 44.

A pair of bias arrangements 18 are provided on opposite sides of the container 4 and are preferably secured within the initial receiving section 10 as shown in FIGS. 1 through 3. These are generally centrally disposed on the side walls of the container and a cable 20 of each retraction mechanism extends from the retraction mechanism 18 and is attached to the pressure plate 16 at securement 22. The cable 20 provides a tension force on the pressure plate 16 urging it towards the initial receiving section 10.

The stacking mechanism 12 has sufficient power to extend the length of the cable 20 of each retracting mechanism to allow a banknote to be added to the stack of banknotes 24 as indicated in FIGS. 2 and 3. As the stacking mechanism 12 is returned to the initial position of FIG. 1 the cable retracting mechanism 18 acts to wind the necessary amount of cable in the take up device to maintain a tension force in the cable urging the pressure plate 16 towards the initial receiving section 10.

With this arrangement, the retraction mechanism is easily secured within the initial receiving section 10 in a space efficient manner and the cables are provided on the interior of the container and do not interfere with the operation of the device. Each of the guides 40 and 42 include a pass through port or slot 46 or 48 to allow the necessary movement of the cable. As can be seen, this position does not interfere with the guide members and does not interfere with the movement of the stacking mechanism 12 through the guide members.

The central attachment point 22 on the pressure plate 16 is the preferred location for engagement of the pressure plate to maintain a generally parallel relationship with the stacking mechanism 12. The type of retraction mechanism 18 is similar to many key retraction systems where there is a cable reel which receives the cable 22 thereon and winds or unwinds the cable as necessary. Typically, the reel includes a shaft or a center point attached to a coil spring which causes the coil spring to wind and compress with outward movement of the cable. This provides a bias force for winding of the cable onto the retraction mechanism and maintains the tension force in the cable. These types of springs can be helically wound and provide an effective mechanism that allows extensive movement of the cable while the tension force provided by the cable urging the pressure plate toward the initial receiving section remains within acceptable ranges.

This mechanism has proven to be effective and reliable and allows for large capacity cassettes capable of receiving 2,000 banknotes or more. It can be appreciated, that this retraction mechanism is also suitable for smaller capacity cassettes. Therefore the retracting mechanism can be used for both large and small capacity cassettes where only the capacity of the container changes. The securement location of the retraction mechanism and the attachment to the pressure plate will remain the same regardless of the capacity. The same retraction mechanism can be used or retraction mechanisms specifically designed for the capacity can be used. It is desirable to provide the retraction mechanism and its housing within the initial banknote receiving section as there is available space within the receiving section without increasing the size thereof. Basically, the stacking mechanism requires a certain space to provide effective striping of a banknote from the guides and additional space for the retraction mechanisms is available.

FIGS. 4 and 5 show alternate embodiments of the retraction arrangement.

The retraction mechanism in FIG. 4 is secured on an end of the initial receiving section and the cable 20 passes from the retraction mechanism 18 to the redirecting pulley 50 to the pressure plate 22. The banknote cassette would include the pair of retracting mechanisms that would operate in this manner.

In FIG. 5 the retraction mechanism 18 and the housing thereof have been provided on the end wall of the storage section 14 and pass upwardly to the pulley 52 which cooperates with the pulley 54 attached within the initial receiving section 10 and the end of the cable is attached to the pressure plate 16 at the connection point 22. As can be appreciated, the guides 40 and 42 would have two ports therethrough for accommodating the cable 20 of each retraction mechanism.

It has been found that this particular spring biased retracting mechanism operates in a satisfactory manner and avoids problems associated with compression springs and large displacement distances often result in sag. Basically, the design allows for concentration of the spring force within the retracting mechanism 18 and appropriate retraction or tension take up of the cable 20 by the spring arrangement.

The winding of the cable 20 on a cable reel which in turn drives a spring arrangement to provide the desired bias force, provides a simple and effective arrangement. It is possible to provide a different arrangement for providing the tension on the cable using one or more reels. It is desirable to concentrate the spring bias within the retraction mechanism and use the rotation of the cable reel to load the spring bias.

These types of retraction mechanisms have been used in other arrangements such as a key retraction system. Basically, the reel type retraction mechanism includes a thin cable which can be attached to keys and the user can merely extend the cable to unlock a device. The user then releases the keys and the retraction mechanism winds the key hole and supports the keys from the end of the cable. This arrangement provides a cost effective design for providing the necessary spring bias of the pressure plate with the initial banknote receiving section.

Although various preferred embodiments of the present invention have been described in detail, it will be appreciated by those skilled in the art that variations may be made without departing from the spirit of the invention or the scope of the appended claims.