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Publication numberUS3143118 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication date4 Aug 1964
Filing date25 Sep 1961
Priority date26 Sep 1960
Also published asDE1449133A1
Publication numberUS 3143118 A, US 3143118A, US-A-3143118, US3143118 A, US3143118A
InventorsSidney Haines
Original AssigneeVacuumatic Ltd
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Coin sorting apparatus
US 3143118 A
Images(5)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

4, 1964 5. HAINES 3,143,118

COIN SORTING APPARATUS Filed Sept. 25. 1961 5 Sheets-Sheet 1 if m Aug. 4, 1964 5. HAINES COIN SORTING APPARATUS Filed Sept. 25, 1961 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 Aug. 4, 1964 5. HAINES 3,143,113

COIN SORTING APPARATUS Filed Sept. 25. 1961 S SheetS-Sheet 3 4, 1964 s. HAINES com SORTING APPARATUS 5 Sheets-Sheet, 4

Filed Sept. 25. 1961 Aug. 4, 1964 Filed Sept. 25, 1961 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 T f "I I I '1 y 4 I a4 B; //l/////// ////////4 I/ /A United States Patent M 3,143,118 COW SQRTING APPARATUS Sidney Haines, Dover-court, England, assignor to Vacuumatie Limited, Harwich, England, a British company Filed Sept. 25, 1961., Ser. No. 140,344 Claims priority, apniication Great Britain Sept. 26, 1960 20 Claims. (Cl. 133-3) This invention relates to a coin sorting apparatus and has for an object to provide a simple apparatus to construct and which is rapid in its operation and which Will ensure that the coins are sorted out in each denomination and that only one coin is counted at any one instance which is particularly important when the sum total of all coins are to be registered on one counter.

According to this invention a coin sorting apparatus comprises, a hopper for holding a batch of mixed coins, a continuous movable coin receiving and gauging unit forming a wall or part of a wall of the hopper and having a number of holes therein facing the interior of the hopper and leading respectively to a number of open gauging channels in said unit of a similar shape to one another and facing away from the interior of the hopper each of which holes is arranged to receive any size of coin to be sorted and the width of the gauging channels vary along their length and are so disposed that during their movement coins entering them may move along them in a direction transverse to the direction of movement of the unit and are arrested at different distances from the holes they enter according to the size of the coin, a stationary closure wall arranged opposite said gauging channel and formed with transfer holes arranged respectively at corresponding distances from the entry holes to those taken up by coins of different sizes in the gauging channels and collecting containers associated with the transfer holes, whereby the gauging unit in moving through the hopper entraps coins in said entry holes which subsequently move along the channels until arrested by the sides thereof and are then carried opposite the transfer holes in the closure wall through which they pass into the collecting containers.

Preferably the gauging unit is rotatably mounted and the gauging channels extend outwardly from the axis of rotation and said entry holes are opposite the outer ends of said channels whereby the coins enter the holes when they are in their lower positions and are carried upwardly and then fall by gravity along said channels through the transfer holes into the collecting chambers which are arranged at the lower end of said closure wall.

In one form of construction a fixed shutter is arranged to extend for the greater part of the path of movement of each hole in the unit so as to shut off communication between said hole and its associated gauging channel, which shutter is provided with an aperture which is traversed by said holes so that a coin may pass from the hopper into a hole in the unit and is maintained therein by the shutter until it comes opposite the aperture in the shutter when it passes into a gauging channel, moves along that channel under gravity to a location determined by the size of the coin and remains in the channel until it comes opposite a transfer hole in said closure wall whereupon it passes through that hole under gravity into a collecting container.

In one form of the invention the gauging unit may be a disc rotatable about an inclined axis so that the disc extends upwardly and rearwardly from the bottom of the front wall of the hopper and is provided with said entry holes near its periphery which holes extend through the thickness thereof and are arranged opposite radially extending open channels on that side of the disc away from the interior of the hopper, the width across which channels vary along their length so as to be smaller as 3,143,118 Patented Aug. 4, 19%4 they approach the axis of rotation. With this arrangement the plane of the disc is inclined to the vertical and coins tend to pass into the holes in the disc when the holes are lowermost and each coin is prevented by the shutter from passing into a channel until it reaches a higher position and is opposite the aperture in the shutter when again the coin passes under the action of gravity into the said channel at the back of the disc and moves along that channel until arrested by the sides thereof at the location where the width across the sides corresponds with the diameter of the coin and when the coin is moved opposite the transfer opening in said stationary closure Wall it again moves under gravity through the hole into a collecting container.

A feeler may be associated with each transfer hole in the closure wall each of which feelers is moved by a coin as it moves with the unit having reached a limiting position in a channel and each of Which feelers is arranged to operate a counter. For example, each said feeler may be mounted on the fixed closure wall in a position which will be intersected by the path of travel of the coin imparted by the movement of said unit and when the coin has reached its limiting position in the channel.

Means may be provided, which are operated by each said counter, for ejecting coins collected by the gauging units back again into the hopper at a predetermined reading of the counter so that a collecting container may receive a predetermined number of coins which are then emptied from it. The entry holes in a rotatable unit for feeding the coins are arranged in a circle concentric about the axis of rotation and said means for ejecting the coins may be movably mounted on the fixed closure wall or a part secured thereto, so that it may be projected through each entry hole as that hole sweeps past it and which element is normally held out of the path of rotation of said hole but is moved into the path by means actuated by any one of the counters when it has reached a predetermined reading.

Each of the collecting containers may be movable for emptying the collected coins.

The movement of any one of the collecting containers may be arranged to condition said ejecting means so that said element may be brought clear of said gauging unit.

Means may be provided for imparting a limited rotational movement to the unit away from a position in which it may have become jammed and in the opposite direction to that for effecting sorting and then back again to said position. In such an arrangement means may be provided for rendering the counter inoperative during those limited rotational movements so should a counter have been operated just at the time of jamming it is not again operated when the unit is moved back again to the position it occupied at the time of jamming.

The following is a more detailed description of one form of coin separator and counter according to the invention reference being made to the accompanying drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is a part side view and part vertical section on the line 11 of FIGURE 2;

FIGURE 2 is a front elevation of the apparatus with the hopper removed and certain parts of the rotatable gauging unit cut away to show the counting mechanism and part of the means for clearing a jam;

FIGURE 3 is a side elevation of the means for ejecting coins out of the gauging unit and back again into the hopper at a predetermined reading of a counter;

FIGURE 4 is a Side elevation of a feeler for actuating a counter;

FIGURES 5, 6 and 7 show alternative shapes of the gauging channel;

FIGURE 8 is a face view of one part of a closure unit looking on that side thereof facing the hopper;

FIGURE 9 is a face view of the other part of the closure unit;

FIGURE 10 is a section on the line 10I9 of FIG- URE 9;

FIGURE 11 is a circuit diagram showing the various electrical units; and

FIGURE 12 is a side view of a deflecting element and Stop pin.

The main body casting 10 of the apparatus comprises a hollow compartment on the bottom wall 11 of which is mounted a driving motor 12 so that the driving shaft 13 thereof is inclined to the horizontal which shaft is provided with a driving pulley 14.

The front wall 15 has fixed to the outer face thereof a number of brackets 16 on which are mounted tip-up coin collecting containers 17, each provided with a delivery mouth 18 which is normally in the full line position shown in FIGURE 1 but can be tilted downwardly to the chain line position and each is provided with an inlet passage 19 for the sorted coins. A plate 2!) constitutes a part of what is referred to as a closure unit forming a part of the main body casting. This plate is arranged at an angle of about 35 to the vertical and has a boss 21 in which is rotatably mounted a spindle 22.

The spindle is connected through a frictional slipping clutch 23 with a pulley 24. The pulley is encircled by a belt 25 which also encircles the pulley 14 on the motor shaft I3.

A disc like coin gauging unit 27 is keyed to the spindle 22 and is retained in engagement therewith by a screw 28. The front face 29 of the disc 27 is slightly domed or comprises a wide angle cone and is provided with an axially extending peripheral rim 36 which is encircled by a ring 31 fixed to the plate 20.

Secured to the ring 31 in front of the disc is a hopper 32 the front and side walls 33 of which are curvilinear and extend upwardly from the bottom wall 34 which for the most part is flat but merges with an inclined portion 35 having a flange 36 which is attached to the ring 31.

The rear face 39 of the disc 27 is formed with a peripheral recess 37 in which is disposed an annular shutter 38 forming a part of the fixed ring 31, which shutter lies flush with said back face 39. The peripheral portion of the disc which is opposite the recess 37 is provided with a number of holes 49, FIGURE 2, all of the same diameter which is slightly greater than that of the largest coins required to be counted. The edges of the holes 40 which are presented to the interior of the hopper are formed in known manner with arcuate shaped chamfers 41 so as to prevent more than one coin lodging in any one hole. Also a spring pressed gate (not shown) of known form engages the front face of the disc and sweeps away any; additional coins which may try to enter the holes. Secured to the back of the disc 27 are a number of sets of plates. Each set is made up of three plates 42, 43, 44 which are disposed apart so as to provide circumferentially extending grooves 45, 46 between them (FIGURE 2) and at the inner end of each set is a stud 7 the spacing apart of adjacent studs being such as to arrest the smallest coin to be counted.

As viewed in FIGURE 2 the disc rotates clockwise and the leading edges of the plates in each set are in line with one another and are inclined at a small angle away from a radius in a leading direction.

The plate 42 nearest the periphery of the disc has a trailing edge made up of two parts 47, 48 the former part 47 of which is inclined in a leading direction to a radius which extends outwardly from the junction with the other part whereas the other part 48 is inclined to said radius at a small angle in the opposite direction. Similarly the trailing edge of the plate 43 is formed in two parts 49, 5t) which are inclined in relation to a radius extending throufl the locality where they join one another but the angle of inclination of the part 49 is somewhat less than that of the part 47 in the first said plate 42. Also at 45 to the vertical.

the outer extremity of the trailing edge is in line with the edge 48 of the outer plate 42. The plate 44 also has a trailing edge made up of parts 52, 53, 54 similarly disposed to the part 49, 56, 5].. Thus in effect the width of the channel formed between the leading edges of one set of plates which are radial or inclined to a radius and the trailing edges of the other set of plates diminishes as it extends inwardly towards the axis of rotation.

Each of the three parts of the channel is parallel sided except for the parts 47, 4% and 52 which provide upwardly extending shoulders which support three of the larger coins to be supported whereas the smallest coins pass through each channel without hindrance, but are arrested by the studs 7 as indicated above.

In the arrangement shown in FIGURE 6 the studs 7 are replaced by further plates 7a and the leading and trailing edges of all the plates are straight and so inclined to radii that the channels between the leading and trailing edges of adjacent sets of plates diminish in width as they extend towards the axis of rotation.

In the arrangement shown in FIGURE 7 the plates 42, 43, 44 are replaced by suitably spaced pegs 42a, 43a, 44a and smaller pegs 137 are disposed between them.

The face of the disc 27 further from the hopper may be provided with circumferential grooves 138 between the various plates or pegs.

The shutter portion 38 is cut away at 55 to form an opening 56 across which the holes 40 successively sweep and thus should there be a coin in a hole as it sweeps past the opening 56 it will fall by gravity into the channel between two adjacent sets of the plates and opposite that hole and moves inwardly until it is stopped by one of the parts 47, 49 and 52, whereas the smallest of the coins will move to the end of the channel and rest against the studs 7 as referred to above. The opening 56 is so disposed that the coin remains in a hole 40 for not more than half a revolution of the disc 27.

Arranged at the back of the aforesaid sets of plates and fixed in a circular recess 142 (see FIGURE 8) to the backing member 20 is a half annular plate 58 and a grooved block 59 referred to later, the front faces of which plate and block are flush with one another. The dividing line between the plate and block is approximately Mounted on the plate 58 on the trailing side of the aperture 56 in the shutter is an ejector unit shown in FIGURE 3. The ejector unit comprises a finger 3 pivotally mounted at 68 on a part 61, one ex tremity of which finger is arranged to be traversed by the various holes 49 in said disc and is capable of projecting through them.

The other end of the finger is provided with a roller 62 which is engageable by one end of a bale 63 pivoted at 64 to a bracket on the part 61. The other end of the bale is pivoted at 66 to a link 67 pivoted at one end at 68 to the armature 69 of a solenoid 70. The other end of the link is connected to one end of a tension spring 71 the other end of which is anchored to a fixed part of the apparatus.

The parts are shown in the position in which the solenoid 70 is energised as will be explained later by the counting mechanism. In this position the extremity of the finger 8 lies in the path of movement of the coin 9 and moves it out of the hole 40 in the disc which finger is held in this position by a spring 6 connected between it and a pin 146. As the hole passes the finger it is swung downwardly by the trailing edge of the hole so that it moves clockwise against the action of the spring 6 which moves it back again anti-clockwise into the next hole when that hole reaches it and a coin is ejected from that hole.

On the other hand when the solenoid 70 is deenergised the spring 71 pulls it into a position in which the upper extremity of the finger lies behind the disc. Also mounted on the annular plate 58 is a plate 4 on which four feelers 73 are pivotally mounted at 72. The assemblage of feelers is disposed at the back of the plate 58 so that a part of it extends into the gap 74 shown in FIG- URE 1, whereas the main part of it extends through an opening 145, FIGURE 2, in the part 20. Thus one extremity of each feeler 73 projects through a slot in the plate 58 and the various channels between the sets of plates 42, 43, 44 sweep across the feelers which enter the gaps 45, 46 and also beyond the outer end of the plate 42 and the inner edge of the plates 44. Normally each feeler is urged into the position shown in FIGURE 4 by a spring 5. An adjusting screw 75 on the feeler abuts a moving part of a micro switch 76 in circuit with a relay controlling an electrically actuated counter. The feeler tends to rotate anti-clockwise under the pull of the spring 5 its movement being limited by the plate 4. As a coin passes over the feeler it is swung clockwise against the action of the spring 5 and the set screw is withdrawn from the moving element of the switch which moves outwardly and results in an electric impulse being transmitted to a relay 3 (see FIGURE 11) which actuates each of three counters A, B, C, the counter A being actuated by a pulse generator 2. The counters A and B are common to all the channels whereas each channel is provided with a separate counter C. The counter A indicates the combined value of all the coins sorted for which purpose the different coins cause the pulse generator 2 to generate a different number of pulses according to the value of the coin. The counter B indicates the total number of coins sorted. Each counter C indicates the number of coins which have been fed to the particular collecting container associated with it.

It should be appreciated that in FIGURE 11 there are associated with each of the four counters C the following components: switch 76, relay 3, switch 141, solenoid 95, relay mechanism 136, switch 101 and light 98. All the other components shown in the figure are common to the circuits associated with the four counters.

On the leading side of the plate 4 is the other part 59 of the closure unit in the form of a block, the outer face of which is provided with four circumferential grooves 77, 78, 79, St) the open ends of which are arranged respectively opposite the four feeler arms.

The other ends of the circumferential grooves terminate in transfer holes 81, 82, 83, 84 opposite delivery passages 85, 86, 87, 88 formed in the other part 20 of the closure unit and which communicate respectively with openings in the four coin collecting containers 17. The opening in each coin container is of such size that when the coin container is in its dovmward position as shown in FIGURE 1 the opening is out of register with the end of the co-operating passage and no further coins can enter the container but will come to rest on the back face thereof. The coins can only enter the container when it is returned to its upright position.

In order to ensure that the coins after leaving each feeler 73 shall drop into the circumferential groove there is disposed opposite the mouth of each groove a deflecting element 89 as best seen in FIGURE 12. These defiecting elements 89 may be formed on a plate 90 which is secured to the outer face of the aforesaid block 59.

The solenoid 70 is normally tie-energised and the tension spring 71 under these conditions retains the bale 63 in the nearly vertical position thus rendering the finger 8 inoperative. When the counter C indicates a predetermined number of coins, it closes a switch 141 (FIGURE 11) energising the solenoid 70 through a relay system 136 bringing it into the position shown in FIGURE 3 when the finger 8 is free to enter the hole 40 in the disc 27.

It will be appreciated, however, that since the feelers 73 in the counting mechanism are in advance of the ejector mechanism there will be a number of coins in the channels approaching the counting mechanism, for example with the disposition of the parts shown in the drawing there may be up to four coins. These coins will require to be arrested from passing on to the collecting containers so that a collecting container associated with the counter indicating the predetermined amount should not receive any further coins in excess of that amount.

Thus there are provided respectively in the circumfertial grooves 77, 78, 79, near the mouths thereof stop pins 91, 92, 93, 94 each of which is movable into and out of the respective groove and each under the control of a solenoid 95 (see FIGURE 12). The solenoids are of the thrust type and are normally de-energised, the stop pins being withdrawn under the action of springs and raised when the solenoids are energised.

As soon as a counter C associated with any one of the grooves 77, 78, 79, 80 indicates a predetermined number of coins it actuates a switch 141 which conditions a relay system 136 which controls a number of warning lights 96, 97, 98, 99 associated with the coin collecting containers and also puts into operation a delay action device 137 so that the light does not become illuminated until the last coin has travelled from the counter feeler 73 through one of the delivery passages and renders the ejector operative but the solenoid 95 for raising a stop pin is not energised by the relay system until a coin, additional to said predetermined number, passes over a feeler 73 of the counter. The relay system 136 also conditions the solenoid 95 appropriate to that one of the stop pins which is projected into one of the grooves.

When the delivery mouth 18 of each container is swung downwardly an abutment 100 thereon operates a microswitch 191 also controlling the relay system 136. The micro-switches 101 of the various containers are arranged in circuit with the relay system 136 and the solenoid 70 so that the solenoid is de-energised and the finger 8 is withdrawn from the path of movement of the coins and the sorting and counting recommences.

The relay also de-energises said one of the solenoids 95 resulting in said one of the stop pins being withdrawn under the action of its springs, The released coins, however, cannot enter the container until it is again swung upwardly.

The relay also illuminates one of the indicating lights 98 through the delay action device 137.

A main switch 139 controls the whole circuit and connects or disconnects it with a source of supply 140.

To summarise the operation of the apparatus a coin 9 enters one of the openings 40 in the rotating disc 27 when in the lower part of its travel and is carried upwardly by the disc in sliding contact with the front of the shutter 38 and with the rear face of the spring pressed gate. The coin eventually comes opposite the aperture 56 therein. If the ejector 8, which is opposite that aperture, is operative the coin is ejected back again into the hopper 32. If the ejector is inoperative the coin passes through the opening 40 and aperture 56 into one of the channels at the back of the rotating disc 27 and moves downwardly by gravity in sliding contact with the front face of the part 58 of the fixed closure unit until it is arrested by the width of the channel appropriate to the size of the coin. The coin continues to be carried round by the disc in sliding contact with the front face of the part 53 until it contacts one of the feelers 73 and is then deflected by the deflector 89 on the other part 59 of the closure unit into one of the circumferential grooves 77, 78, 79, 80 in the front face of the block 59 and then passes through one of the transfer holes 81, 82, 83, 84 to the back of the block and into one of the passages 85, 86, 87, 88 on the front face of the first said part 20 and thence to one of the containers.

The coin, in moving one of the feelers 73 associated with the particular circumferential groove appropriate to the size of the coin, operates one of four micro switches 76 which conditions one of the relays 3. The relay actuates the three counters A, B, C, and the latter indicates the number of coins passing to one of the containers. When that counter indicates a predetermined number it operates a switch in that counter which conditions a relay system 136 which actuates one of the solenoids 95 and this results in one of the stop pins 91, 92, 93, 94 being raised and prevents further coins passing down the passage into the coin container appropriate to that size of coin. The relay also operates the delay action device 137 which illuminates the indicating light 98 when the last coin has reached the coin container. The relay system also energises the solenoid 70 which brings the ejector 8 into operation. On seeing the warning light 98, the operator swings the container downwards and this actuates a micro-switch 101 breaking the circuit to the relay system 136 whereby the stop pin is withdrawn, the light 98 extinguished and the ejector 8 rendered inoperative. The sorting and counting is recommenced and any coins collected in the groove pass into the passage shower into the container when it is swung into its upper position.

As previously indicated, should jamming occur which prevents rotation of the gauging unit 27 or prevents any other function of the apparatus such as the operation of the counters, means are provided for rotating the unit a short distance anti-clockwise which action usually frees the jam. For this purpose the shaft 22 has fixed to it a toothed Wheel 1012 (only shown in FIGURE 2) and also has rotatably mounted upon it a member 103 to which is fixed a tubular lever arm 104 projecting out from the wall of the casing through a slot 105. A push rod 106 is reciprocably mounted in the tubular lever arm 104 and is formed with a reduced portion 107 providing a shoulder 103 against which abuts one end of a compres sion spring 109 the other end of which abuts against an internal shoulder 110 within the tubular lever arm so as to press the rod 106 outwardly. The outward movement of the push rod 106 is limited by another shoulder 111 at the end of the reduced portion contacting with the shoulder 110. The inner end of the push rod is provided with a bore 112 in which a supplementary push rod 113 is reciprocable, the inner extremity of which is tapered so as to be engageable between teeth on the toothed wheel 102.

The supplementary push rod 113 is provided with a radially extending pin 114 which extends out through an axially extending slot 115 in the tubular part of the push rod 106.

A compression spring 116 is provided between the outer end of the supplementary push rod and the bottom 117 of the bore 112.

When it is required to rotate the shaft 22 anti-clockwise the push rod 106 is moved radially inwards and if the supplementary push rod 113 is opposite a gap between the teeth it will be moved by the push rod 106 and enter said gap, and swinging of the tubular lever arm 104 downwardly will rotate the shaft 22 anti-clockwise.

If the supplementary push rod engages the end of a tooth on the toothed Wheel 1112 the first part of the v downward movement of the lever arm will bring the supplementary push rod opposite the gap between the teeth and further movement downwardly of the lever arm will rotate the shaft anti-clockwise. Thus the angular movement required for the lever arm requires to be at least the angular pitch of the teeth of the toothed wheel and this is arranged to be less than the angular pitch between the holes 40.

When the anti-clockwise movement of the shaft is completed the lever arm is swung upwardly towards the other end of the slot 105. Should one of the counters have been just operated when jamming has occurred the anti-clockwise movement of the toothed wheel 102 may have brought the feeler 73 into such a position that when the lever arm 104 is again brought back to its initial position by clockwise movement the feeler under the action of the same coin will again operate the counting mechanism. Thus it is necessary to provide means for rendering the counting mechanism inoperative during at least the return movement of the lever arm after clearing the jam. This is effected in the following manner.

There is rotatably mounted on the tubular lever arm 1114 a collar 113 the right hand end face of which is formed with a stepped slot 119, 120 and the push rod 106 is provided with a radially extending pin 121 which extends through an axially extending slot 122 in the lever arm 10- and projects into the stepped slot in the collar 113. Axial movement of the collar on the lever arm is prevented by washers 123.

Fixed to the collar 113 is a lever arm 124 to the end of which is anchored a tension spring 125 the other end of which is anchored to a fixed part of the apparatus. Overiying the tubular lever arm 104 is a stop lever 126 which is pivoted to one end at 127 to a fixed part of the casing and has anchored to the other end one end of a comparatively stiff spring 128 the other end of which is anchored to a fixed part of the casing.

The stifi spring 128 moves the stop lever 126 against a stop pin 129 on a fixed part of the apparatus. One end of a lighter spring 134 is also anchored at one end to a fixed part of the apparatus and at the other end to a block 131 fixed to the lever arm and carrying a microswitch 132. The pin 121 projects beyond the collar 13 and, when the push rod 106 is at the outer limit of its movement, the pin 121 overlies a bracket 133 on the casing 10, thus preventing the lever arm from being swung downwardly.

The operation of the device is as follows:

When the plunger 136 is pressed inwardly the pin 121 comes into contact with the moving part of the microswitch 132 which, as shown in FIGURE 11, is arranged in circuit with the motor 12 and stops the motor. The micro-switch is also associated with a relay system 135 which operates to lock all the counters at the instant when the micro-switch 132 is operated. Further movement of the plunger brings the pin 121 opposite the shallower portion 119 of the stepped slot in the collar 118 and the spring 125 rotates the collar so that the pin 121 is brought into the shallower part of the slot, thus preventing the plunger from being returned by the spring 109. If the subsidiary plunger 113 is opposite a gap between the teeth on the toothed wheel 102 it will enter; it not, swinging of the lever arm 104- downwardly will cause it to enter and further movement will rotate the toothed wheel so as to clear the jam.

When the jam has been relieved the lever arm 104 is swung upwardly and this brings the arm 124 into engagement with a pin 140, FIGURE 1, on a fixed part of the casing so that further movement of the lever arm 104 will cause the arm 124 and the collar 118 to be rotated anti-clockwise in FIGURE 1 which brings the pin 121 out of a shallower portion 119 of the slot in the collar and the spring 109 will bring it into the deeper part 120 of the slot 120 releasing the micro-switch 132 and placing the counter again into operation. This further upward swing on the lever arm 104 will have been against the action of the spring 128 which when the arm 104 is released will then impart a short downward movement to the lever arm 104 until the stop lever 126 engages the pin 129. The release of the micro-switch restarts the motor.

I claim:

1. An apparatus comprising containing means for contaming a number of mixed coins of different sizes, sorting means for sorting the mixed coins into their ditferent sizes, counting means for counting the sorted coins of each size, separate collecting means for collecting each size of sorted and counted coins, means rendered operative when said counting means indicates that a predeter mined number of coins of any one size have been counted, for preventing any further coins of said one size which have been sorted from entering the appropriate collecting means until it has been emptied, which means retains said further coins in the sorted condition, and ejecting means for ejecting any further coins of at least said one size which are not so retained from the sorting means back into the containing means when said predetermined number of coins of said one size have been counted.

2. An apparatus as claimed in claim 1 in which said sorting means comprises a hopper for holding a batch of mixed coins, a continuously movable coin receiving and gauging unit forming a wall or part of a wall of the hopper and having a number of entry holes therein facing the interior of the hopper and arranged to receive any size of coin to be sorted and leading respectively to a number of open gauging channels in said unit of a similar shape to one another and facing away from the interior of the hopper, the width of each of which gauging channels varies along its length and which gauging channels are so disposed that during their movement coins entering them may move along them in a direction transverse to the direction of movement of the unit until the coins are arrested at different distances from the holes they enter according to the size of the coin, a stationary closure wall arranged opposite said gauging channels and formed with transfer holes arranged respectively at distances from the entry holes corresponding to those taken up by coins of different sizes in the gauging channels, and collecting containers associated with the transfer holes, whereby the gauging unit in moving through the hopper entraps coins in said entry holes which coins subsequently move along the gauging channels until arrested by the sides thereof and are then carried opposite the transfer holes in the closure wall through which they pass into the collecting containers.

3. An apparatus as claimed in claim 2 wherein the gauging unit is rotatably mounted and the gauging channels extend outwardly from the axis of rotation of the unit and said entry holes are opposite the outer ends of said channels whereby the coins enter the holes when they are in their lower positions and are carried upwardly and then fall by gravity along said channels through the transfer holes into the collecting containers which are arranged at the lower end of said closure wall.

4. An apparatus as claimed in claim 2 wherein the gauging unit is rotatably mounted and a fixed shutter is arranged to extend over the path of movement of each entry hole in the unit so as to shut oif communication between said entry hole and its associated gauging channel, an aperture in said shutter and disposed so that a coin remains in an entry hole for not more than half a revolution of the unit and which aperture is traversed by said holes so that a coin may pass from the hopper into an entry hole in the unit and is maintained therein by the shutter for not more than half a revolution of the unit until the coin comes opposite the aperture in the shutter whereupon it passes into a gauging channel, moves along that channel under gravity to a location determined by the size of the coin and remains in the channel until it comes opposite a transfer hole in said closure wall whereupon it passes through that hole under gravity into a collecting container.

5. An apparatus as claimed in claim 2 wherein said gauging unit is a disc rotatable about an inclined axis so that the disc extends upwardly and rearwardly from the bottom of the front wall of the hopper and is provided with said entry holes near its periphery which holes extend through the thickness thereof and are arranged opposite radially extending open channels on that side of the disc away from the interior of the hopper, the width across each of which channels varies along its length so as to be smaller nearer the axis of rotation of the unit.

6. An apparatus as claimed in claim 5 wherein said gauging channels are formed by a number of sets of projections on the opposite side of the disc to the hopper.

7. An apparatus as claimed in claim 2 in which the gauging unit is rotatable and the holes in it for receiving the coins are arranged in a circle concentric about the axis of rotation of the unit wherein said means for ejecting the coins comprises an element which is mounted on the fixed closure wall so that the element may be projected through each entry hole as that hole sweeps past it and which element is normally held out of the path of rotation of said hole but is moved into the path by means actuated by any one of the counters when it has reached a predetermined reading.

8. An apparatus as claimed in claim 2 and having a rotatable gauging unit wherein means are provided for imparting a limited rotational movement to the unit away from a position in which it may have become jammed and in the opposite direction to that for effecting sorting and then back again to said position.

9. An apparatus as claimed in claim 8 wherein means are provided for rendering the counting means inoperative during said limited rotational movements.

10. An apparatus as claimed in claim 8 in which said unit is driven by a motor and in which the means for imparting limited rotational movement to the gauging unit comprises a lever arm mounted to swing about the axis of rotation of the gauging unit and provided with means for clutching and unclutching it to and from the unit, a control for said clutch which when actuated in a direction to clutch the lever arm to said gauging unit is arranged to render inoperative said driving motor, whereafter the lever arm may move the unit in a reverse direction to the direction of rotation during sorting to clear the jam.

11. An apparatus as claimed in claim 10 in which detent mechanism is provided for holding the clutch in an engaged position against the action of a spring, which detent mechanism is arranged to automatically release the control when the lever arm is swung back beyond a datum position after clearing a jam whereby the control is moved to a position to disengage the clutch.

12. An apparatus as claimed in claim 2 in which said means rendered operative when said counting means indicates that a predetermined number of coins of any one size have been counted comprises an element movable under the action of a solenoid into and out of a position in which it arrests and retains said further coins in a passage between the appropriate transfer hole and the associated collecting container.

13. An apparatus as claimed in claim 12 in which said collecting containers are movable for emptying them of coins and in which said solenoid is energized when a coin of said one size additional to said predetermined number engages a part of said counting means and is de-energized when the appropriate collecting container is moved to empty the collected coins of said one size.

14. An apparatus as claimed in claim 2 wherein a feeler is associated with each transfer hole in the closure wall each feeler being mounted on said fixed closure wall to be moved by a coin as it moves with the unit having reached a limiting position in a channel and each of which feelers is arranged to operate a counter.

15. An apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein each said collecting means comprises a container movable for emptying the' collected coins and where said ejecting means comprises an element mounted for movement between a position in which it projects through each entry hole as that hole sweeps past it and a position clear of said holes wherein movement of any one of the collecting containers is arranged to condition said ejecting means so that said element may be brought clear of said gauging unit.

16. An apparatus as claimed in claim 1 in which said means rendered operative when said counting means indicates that a predetermined number of coins of any one size have been counted comprises an element mounted for movement into and out of a position in which it prevents a coin of said one size which leaves said counting means from reaching the associated collecting container.

17. A coin sorting apparatus comprising, a hopper for holding a batch of mixed coins, a continuously rotatable coin receiving and gauging unit forming a wall or part of a Wall of the hopper and having a number of entry holes therein facing the interior of the hopper and arranged to receive any size of coin to be sorted and leading respectively to a number of open gauging channels in said unit each of a similar shape to one another and facing away from the interior of the hopper, a fixed shutter arranged to extend over the path of movement of each entry hole in the unit so as to cut off communication between said holes and the gauging channels, an aperture in said shutter traversed by said coins and disposed so that a coin remains in an entry hole for not more than one half a revolution of said unit, the width, of each of which gauging channels varies along its length and which gauging channels are so disposed that during their movement coins entering them may move along them in a direction transverse to the direction of movement of the unit until the coins are arrested at different distances from the holes they enter according to the size of the coin, a stationary closure wall arranged opposite said gauging channels and formed with transfer holes arranged respectively at distances from the entry holes corresponding to those taken up by coins of different sizes in the gauging channels and collecting containers associated with the transfer holes, whereby the gauging unit in moving through the hopper entraps coins in said entry holes which coins subsequently pass through said aperture and move along the gauging channels until arrested by the sides thereof and are then carried opposite the transfer holes in the closure wall through which they pass into the collecting containers, a counter for each size of coin to be sorted having an actuating member in the path of movement of a coin after it has reached its final position in a gauging channel, manually operated means adapted to impart a limited rotational movement to the gauging unit from the position in which it may have become jammed and in the opposite direction to that for sorting and then back again to the first said position, and means for rendering the counter inoperative during the limited rotational movement.

18. A coin sorting apparatus according to claim 17 and in which the unit is driven by a motor in which said means for imparting limited rotational movement to the gauging unit comprises a lever arm mounted to swing about the axis of rotation of the unit and provided with means for clutching and unclutching it to and from the unit, a control for said clutch which when actuated in a direction to clutch the lever arm to said unit is arranged to render inoperative said driving motor whereafter the lever arm may mave the unit in a reverse direction to its normal direction of rotation to clear a jam.

19. A coin sorting apparatus according to claim 18 in which detent mechanism is provided for holding the clutch control in an engaged position against the action of a spring which detent mechanism is arranged to automatically release the control when the lever arm is swung back beyond a datum position after clearing a jam whereby the control is moved to a position to disengage the clutch.

20. A coin sorting apparatus comprising a hopper for holding a batch of mixed coins, a continuously rotatable coin receiving and gauging unit forming a wall or part of a wall of the hopper and having a number of entry holes therein arranged in a circle concentric about the axis of rotation of said gauging unit'and facing the interior of the hopper and arranged to receive any size of coin to be sorted and leading respectively to a number of open gauging channels in said unit each of a similar shape to one another and facing away from the interior of the hopper, a fixed shutter arranged to extend over the path of movement of each entry hole in the unit so as to cut off communication between said holes and the gauging channels, an aperture in said shutter traversed by said coins and disposed so that the coin remains in an entry hole for not more than one half a revolution of said unit, the width of each of which gauging channels varies along its length and which gauging channels are so disposed that during their movement coins entering them may move along them in directions transverse to the direction of movement of the unit until the coins are arrested at different distances from the holes they enter according to the size of the coin, a stationary closure wall arranged opposite said gauging channels and formed with transfer holes arran ed respectively at distances from the entry holes corresponding to those taken up by coins of different sizes in the gauging channels, a feeler associated with each transfer hole in the closure wall, each of which feelers is mounted on the fixed closure wall in a position which will be intersected by a path of travel of coin imparted by the rotation of said unit and when the coin has reached its limiting position in a gauging channel, a counter operated by each feeler, an element operated by each said counter adapted to eject the coins collected by the gauging unit back into the hopper, said element being mounted on the fixed closure wall so that it may be projected though each entry as the hole sweeps past it, which element is normally held out of the path of movement of said holes but is moved into said path by means actuated by any one of the counters when it has reached a predetermined reading, and collecting containers associated with the transfer holes, whereby the gauging unit in moving through the hopper entraps coins in said entry holes which coins subsequently pass through said aperture and move along the gauging channels until arrested by the sides thereof and are then carried opposite the transfer holes in a closure wall through which they pass into the collecting container.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 566,453 Hanmer Aug. 25, 1896 1,066,181 Burdick July 1, 1913 1,947,456 Bock Feb. 20, 1934 2,603,333 Richey July 15, 1952 2,750,949 Kulo et a1. June 19, 1956 2,886,045 Brown et a1 May 12, 1959 2,955,605 Antonoff Oct. 11, 1960 FOREIGN PATENTS 474,630 Great Britain Nov. 4, 1937

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Classifications
U.S. Classification453/13, 237/12.30B
International ClassificationG07D3/00, G07D3/02
Cooperative ClassificationG07D3/02
European ClassificationG07D3/02