US20130097965A1 - Apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles - Google Patents

Apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles Download PDF

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Publication number
US20130097965A1
US20130097965A1 US13/317,572 US201113317572A US2013097965A1 US 20130097965 A1 US20130097965 A1 US 20130097965A1 US 201113317572 A US201113317572 A US 201113317572A US 2013097965 A1 US2013097965 A1 US 2013097965A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
forming collar
forming
sections
film
articles
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Abandoned
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US13/317,572
Inventor
Chris Allen Honegger
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Rethceif Enterprises LLC
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Rethceif Enterprises LLC
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Priority to US13/317,572 priority Critical patent/US20130097965A1/en
Assigned to RETHCEIF ENTERPRISES, LLC reassignment RETHCEIF ENTERPRISES, LLC ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: HONEGGER, CHRIS ALLEN
Priority claimed from US13/374,731 external-priority patent/US20130097966A1/en
Priority claimed from GB1405472.0A external-priority patent/GB2509026A/en
Publication of US20130097965A1 publication Critical patent/US20130097965A1/en
Abandoned legal-status Critical Current

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    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B9/00Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, e.g. liquids or semiliquids, in flat, folded, or tubular webs of flexible sheet material; Subdividing filled flexible tubes to form packages
    • B65B9/06Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, in a longitudinally-folded web, or in a web folded into a tube about the articles or quantities of material placed upon it
    • B65B9/067Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, in a longitudinally-folded web, or in a web folded into a tube about the articles or quantities of material placed upon it the web advancing continuously
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B59/00Arrangements to enable machines to handle articles of different sizes, to produce packages of different sizes, to vary the contents of packages, to handle different types of packaging material, or to give access for cleaning or maintenance purposes
    • B65B59/001Arrangements to enable adjustments related to the product to be packaged
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B31MAKING ARTICLES OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER; WORKING PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31BMAKING CONTAINERS OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31B50/00Making rigid or semi-rigid containers, e.g. boxes or cartons
    • B31B50/02Feeding or positioning sheets, blanks or webs
    • B31B50/10Feeding or positioning webs
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B11/00Wrapping, e.g. partially or wholly enclosing, articles or quantities of material, in strips, sheets or blanks, of flexible material
    • B65B11/06Wrapping articles, or quantities of material, by conveying wrapper and contents in common defined paths
    • B65B11/08Wrapping articles, or quantities of material, by conveying wrapper and contents in common defined paths in a single straight path
    • B65B11/10Wrapping articles, or quantities of material, by conveying wrapper and contents in common defined paths in a single straight path to fold the wrappers in tubular form about contents
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B59/00Arrangements to enable machines to handle articles of different sizes, to produce packages of different sizes, to vary the contents of packages, to handle different types of packaging material, or to give access for cleaning or maintenance purposes
    • B65B59/003Arrangements to enable adjustments related to the packaging material
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B9/00Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, e.g. liquids or semiliquids, in flat, folded, or tubular webs of flexible sheet material; Subdividing filled flexible tubes to form packages
    • B65B9/10Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, in preformed tubular webs, or in webs formed into tubes around filling nozzles, e.g. extruded tubular webs
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B9/00Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, e.g. liquids or semiliquids, in flat, folded, or tubular webs of flexible sheet material; Subdividing filled flexible tubes to form packages
    • B65B9/06Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, in a longitudinally-folded web, or in a web folded into a tube about the articles or quantities of material placed upon it
    • B65B2009/063Forming shoulders
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B39/00Nozzles, funnels or guides for introducing articles or materials into containers or wrappers
    • B65B39/02Expansible or contractible nozzles, funnels, or guides
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B59/00Arrangements to enable machines to handle articles of different sizes, to produce packages of different sizes, to vary the contents of packages, to handle different types of packaging material, or to give access for cleaning or maintenance purposes
    • B65B59/02Arrangements to enable adjustments to be made while the machine is running
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B9/00Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, e.g. liquids or semiliquids, in flat, folded, or tubular webs of flexible sheet material; Subdividing filled flexible tubes to form packages
    • B65B9/10Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, in preformed tubular webs, or in webs formed into tubes around filling nozzles, e.g. extruded tubular webs
    • B65B9/13Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, in preformed tubular webs, or in webs formed into tubes around filling nozzles, e.g. extruded tubular webs the preformed tubular webs being supplied in a flattened state
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B9/00Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, e.g. liquids or semiliquids, in flat, folded, or tubular webs of flexible sheet material; Subdividing filled flexible tubes to form packages
    • B65B9/10Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, in preformed tubular webs, or in webs formed into tubes around filling nozzles, e.g. extruded tubular webs
    • B65B9/20Enclosing successive articles, or quantities of material, in preformed tubular webs, or in webs formed into tubes around filling nozzles, e.g. extruded tubular webs the webs being formed into tubes in situ around the filling nozzles
    • B65B9/22Forming shoulders; Tube formers

Abstract

An apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles includes a conveyor and a forming collar positioned over the conveyor. The forming collar includes left and right sections pivotally supported on a common carrier and moveable relative to the conveyor. The carrier is also moveable relative to the conveyor. The plastic film tube is formed by directing the central film area onto the conveyor, the left film side onto the inside surface of the left collar section and the right film side onto the inside surface of the right collar section. Movement of the forming collar left and right sections about their pivotal supports and/or movement of the carrier cause the forming collar sections to move between retracted and expanded positions for thereby forming a variable size plastic tube corresponding to the article size being received therein.

Description

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • 1. Field of the Invention
  • The present invention relates to the field of packaging machines and, more particularly, to packaging machines that utilize a plastic film directed from a plastic film roll to envelop and package a variable sized article. More particularly, the present invention relates to apparatus and methods for forming the plastic film into a variable size tube for wrapping or enveloping corresponding variable size large articles such as bales of cotton, trash, cloth, etc.
  • 2. Background
  • It is desirable to package and/or envelop bulk materials such as insulation, trash, cloth, scraps, recyclables, etc. that have been pre-bundled into a bale with a plastic film. However, such bales are typically fairly large and, as a consequence, require large sheets/webs of plastic film capable of surrounding the bales. Additionally, such bales vary in size (length, width and height) and hence are difficult to consistently and snugly envelop in plastic film.
  • Numerous form, fill and seal apparatus have been developed and are in use whereby plastic film is formed into a tube and articles are inserted and enveloped therein. However, such prior apparatus are incapable or efficiently, quickly and relatively inexpensively forming a variable size plastic film tube corresponding to and adapted to snugly envelop variable size articles such as bales of insulation, trash, cloth, scraps, recyclables, etc.
  • Accordingly, a need exists for an apparatus capable of forming a variable size plastic film tube corresponding to and adapted to snugly envelop variable size articles.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • In one form thereof the present invention is directed to an apparatus for forming elongate film into a tube around variable size articles. The apparatus includes a conveying surface adapted to carry the articles being wrapped. A forming collar is provided and is adapted to wrap film around the articles carried on the conveying surface. The forming collar includes left and right sections. The left section is located adjacent a left side of the conveying surface and the right section is located adjacent a right side of the conveying surface. The left and right forming collar sections each include an inside surface, an outside surface and a leading edge. Elongate film having a central area and left and right sides is formed into a tube by directing: the central film area onto the conveying surface; the left film side along the forming collar left section outside surface, around its leading edge and along its inside surface; and, the right film side along the forming collar right section outside surface, around its leading edge and along its inside surface. The left and right forming collar sections are selectively movable relative to the carrying surface thereby selectively varying the tube size. Accordingly, variable sized articles placed on the film central area and carried by the conveying surface in a longitudinal direction between the forming collar sections may be received in the formed film tube.
  • Preferably, the left and right forming collar sections are each independently pivotally supported on a frame and are effectively moveable perpendicular to the longitudinal direction. Alternatively, the left and right forming collar sections are each independently pivotally supported on a frame and are effectively moveable horizontally perpendicular to the longitudinal direction and vertically perpendicular to the longitudinal direction.
  • More preferably, the apparatus includes a guide plate having a left angular edge and a right angular edge and the elongate film central area is directed over the left and right angular edges prior to being directed onto the conveying surface. The forming collar left section is movable in a direction parallel to the left angular edge and the forming collar right section is movable in a direction parallel to the right angular edge. The forming collar left section is preferably pivotally supported on a frame and is thereby movable in a direction parallel to the left angular edge, and the forming collar right section is preferably pivotally supported on the frame and is thereby movable in a direction parallel to the right angular edge.
  • Yet more preferably, the apparatus includes a conveyor defining the carrying surface and adapted to carry the articles being wrapped. Additionally, the left and right forming collar sections each include a lead-in guide. Each lead-in guide is adapted to come in contact with the articles as they travel in the longitudinal direction and thereby cause the movement of its forming collar section.
  • Most preferably, the forming collar left section is movable in a direction parallel to both the left angular edge and the leading edge of the left forming collar section, and the forming collar right section is movable in a direction parallel to both the right angular edge and the leading edge of the right forming collar section. The left and right forming collar sections are supported on a carrier and the carrier is also movable in a direction parallel to the leading edges of the forming collar sections.
  • In another form thereof, the invention is directed to an apparatus for forming elongate film into a tube around variable sized articles. The apparatus includes a conveying surface adapted to carry the articles being wrapped. A forming collar is provided and is adapted to wrap film around the articles carried on the conveying surface. The forming collar includes left and right sections. The left section is located adjacent a left side of the conveying surface and the right section is located adjacent a right side of the conveying surface. The left and right forming collar sections each include an inside surface, an outside surface and a leading edge. Elongate film having a central area and left and right sides is formed into a tube by directing: the central film area onto the conveying surface; the left film side along the forming collar left section outside surface, around its leading edge and along its inside surface; and, the right film side along the forming collar right section outside surface, around its leading edge and along its inside surface. The left and right forming collar sections are supported on a carrier and the carrier is movable relative to the carrying surface thereby selectively varying the tube size. Accordingly, variable sized articles placed on the film central area and carried by the conveying surface in a longitudinal direction between the forming collar sections may be received in the formed film tube.
  • Preferably, the carrier is movable in a direction parallel to the leading edges of said forming collar sections. Additionally, the apparatus includes a guide plate having a left angular edge and a right angular edge. The elongate film central area is directed over said left and right angular edges prior to being directed onto the conveying surface, and the forming collar left section is movable in a direction parallel to the left angular edge and the forming collar right section is movable in a direction parallel to the right angular edge.
  • Yet more preferably, the left and right forming collar sections each include a lead-in guide. The lead-in guides are adapted to come in contact with the articles as they travel in the longitudinal direction and thereby cause the movement of its forming collar section. A conveyor defines the carrying surface and is adapted to carry the articles being wrapped.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • The above mentioned and other features of this invention, and the manner of attaining them, will become more apparent and the invention itself will be better understood by reference to the following description of the embodiments of the invention taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein:
  • FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a plastic film bale wrapping machine incorporating an apparatus for unfolding folded plastic film and form it into a tube in accordance with the principles of the present invention;
  • FIG. 2 is a side elevation view of the machine shown in FIG. 1;
  • FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the machine shown in FIG. 1:
  • FIG. 4 is a front, left side and top perspective diagrammatic view of the film unfolding section and the tube forming section incorporated in the machine of FIG. 1 and constructed in accordance with the principles of the present invention;
  • FIG. 5 is a rear, right side and top perspective view of the film unfolding section and the tube forming section shown in FIG. 4;
  • FIG. 6 is a front, left side and bottom perspective view of the film unfolding section and the tube forming section shown in FIG. 4;
  • FIG. 7 is a front, right side and top perspective view of the film unfolding section and the tube forming section incorporated in the machine of FIG. 1 (with the wrapper section cantilevered conveyor removed for illustration purposes) and constructed in accordance with the principles of the present invention;
  • FIG. 8 is a side elevation view of the film unfolding section and the tube forming section shown in FIG. 7;
  • FIG. 9 is a front, right side and top perspective view of the film unfolding section and the inner form tube section shown in FIG. 7;
  • FIG. 10 is left side elevation view of the film unfolding section and the inner form tube section shown in FIG. 9 and diagrammatically depicting the cantilevered wrapper section conveyor and film guide plates;
  • FIG. 11 is a top plan view of the film unfolding section and the inner form tube section shown in FIG. 9;
  • FIG. 12 is a perspective view of the film wrapper/tube forming section and film unwind section constructed in accordance with the principles of the present invention;
  • FIG. 13 is a partial perspective view of the forming collar carriage shown in FIG. 12;
  • FIG. 14 is diagrammatic top plan view of the forming collar and guide plate forward triangular end with the forming collar carriage removed, and depicting the left shoulder section pivoted about its pivot assemblies and in an expanded position;
  • FIG. 15 is a diagrammatic side elevation view of the forming collar and showing the left shoulder section in its retracted position;
  • FIG. 16 is a diagrammatic side elevation view similar to FIG. 15 but showing the left shoulder section in its expanded position moved upwardly and backwardly; and,
  • FIG. 17 is a diagrammatic front elevation view of the forming collar shown in FIG. 14 depicting the left shoulder section pivoted about its pivot assemblies and in an expanded position.
  • Corresponding reference characters indicate corresponding parts throughout several views. Although the exemplification set out herein illustrates embodiments of the invention, in several forms, the embodiments disclosed below are not intended to be exhaustive or to be construed as limiting the scope of the invention to the precise forms disclosed.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
  • Referring initially to FIGS. 1 through 3, a bale wrapping machine/apparatus is shown and generally designated by the numeral 10. Bale wrapping apparatus 10 is adapted to wrap articles 12 with plastic film which is provided on plastic film roles 14. Articles 12 can be any product, however, in the preferred embodiment are typically bales 16 of cotton, trash, insulation and other bulk materials which have previously been bound and formed into an elongate rectangular box shape as shown. Bales 16 will generally differ in size (height, width and length) and therefore, bale wrapping apparatus 10 is adapted to accommodate the different height, width and length thereof. Moreover, bales 16 are fairly large and are, for example, in the neighborhood of 21 inches high, by 33 inches wide and 55 inches long, and can weigh in the neighborhood of 500 pounds.
  • Bale wrapping apparatus 10 includes an infeed section 18, a wrapping section 20 and an output section 22. Bales 16 are wrapped with plastic from role 14 as they travel through the wrapping section 20 in a longitudinal direction depicted by arrow/line 21. Infeed section 18 includes a conveyor 24 whereupon bales 16 may be placed for transport towards and into the wrapping section 20. Conveyor 24 can take the form of an endless belt conveyor or, alternatively, may be a low friction surface or low friction rollers whereupon bales 16 may be placed and then slid towards and into the wrapping section 20. When conveyor 24 is a low friction surface, a ram 26 is provided as shown and selectively longitudinally driven with drive assembly 28 towards the wrapping section 24 thereby pushing the bales 16 towards and into the wrapping section 20.
  • After the bales 16 have been wrapped or, more particularly, inserted into a plastic film tube 47 formed in the wrapping section 20, they are moved toward the output section 22 whereat they are transported via conveyor 30. Between wrapper section 20 and output section 22, a horizontal sealing section 23 is provided whereby, at each longitudinal end of the enveloped bale, the plastic film tube 47 is sealed in a known and customary manner for thereby fully enclosing or enveloping the bale. The wrapped bales 16 may then be removed from conveyor 30 by forklift or other means and/or can be further transported with other conveyors as needed or desired.
  • The wrapping section 20 includes a film unwind section 32, a film unfolding section 34 and a tube forming section 36. In the embodiment as shown, the film unfolding section 34 is located vertically below the film tube forming section 36, however, these sections can be located in other orientations relative to one another.
  • The film unwind section 32 includes a roll support assembly 38 whereupon the plastic film rolls 14 may selectively be placed for use in the bale wrapping apparatus 10. The plastic film 40 is unwrapped from the plastic film rolls 14 and directed toward the unfolding section 34 with a plurality of guide rollers 42. In the preferred embodiment as shown, the plastic film 40 is directed to the film unfolding section 34 generally horizontally over and along the supporting surface 44.
  • Referring now to FIGS. 4-12, the tube forming section 36 includes a plastic film forming tube or collar 46 whereat a plastic film tube 47 is formed for receipt of the bales 16 therein. Forming tube 46 is generally made up of left and right shoulder sections 48, 50 and the upper conveyor or carrying surface 130 of the endless belt conveyor 129. Left and right shoulder sections 48, 50 are provided with left and right lead-in guides 52, 54 respectively. Forming tube 46 defines an inlet orifice 56, a central volume 57 and outlet orifice 58.
  • Left and right lead-in guides 52, 54 are, in part, generally conically shaped and flared outwardly away from the inlet orifice 56. Lead-in guides 52, 54 form a “chute” leading into the forming tube central volume 57 that aids to guide bales 16 into the central volume 57 of the plastic film forming tube 46. More importantly, the lead-in guides 52, 54 come in contact with the bales 16 as the bales travel into the inlet orifice 56 and cause the left and/or right shoulder sections 48, 50 to shift and selectively increase the central volume 57 and, hence, the width/size of the plastic tube 47. In this manner, the plastic film tube 47 is selectively increased or decreased in width/size for accommodating variable sized bales.
  • Left and right shoulder sections 48, 50 are pivotally supported with pivot assemblies 60 from a carrier 62. Pivot assemblies 60 each include an arm 61 pivotally secured at their upper end to the carrier 62 about pivot axes 62R, 62L and pivotally secured at their lower end to a shoulder section 48, 50 about pivot axes 48L, 50R. As best seen in FIG. 7, the pivot axes of each arm 61 are parallel to one another. The pivot axes of each shoulder section 48, 50 are also parallel to one another. That is, pivot axes 62R and 50R are parallel to one another and pivot axes 62L and 48L are parallel to one another. Accordingly, shoulder section 48 is movable in a direction defined by an arc that swings about the pivot axes 62L while being maintained in a generally vertical orientation by pivoting about axes 48L. Similarly, shoulder section 50 is movable in a direction defined by an arc that swings about the pivot axes 62R while being maintained in a generally vertical orientation by pivoting about axes 50R. Additionally, the pivot assemblies 60 allow the left and right shoulder sections 48, 50 to be independently selectively moveable relative to each other. A tension spring mechanism 51 (FIG. 7) is secured between the left and right shoulder sections 48, 50 for biasing the shoulder sections 48, 50 towards each other and, hence, upon or in sliding engagement with bales 16 as the bales 16 travel through the central volume 57 of the forming tube 46.
  • As shown in FIG. 12, cam assemblies 138 are provided whereby the carrier 62 is itself also capable of moving vertically upwardly and backwardly away from the conveyor upper surface 130. Cam assemblies 138 include cam slots 140 on the supporting horizontal beams 142 of the wrapper section frame 144. Cam slots 140 are formed between cam rails 141 affixed to the beams 142. Cam slots 140 are sized and adapted to slidingly receive cam roller wheels 146 which are pivotally secured to the carrier 62 with bolts 143. Accordingly, cam roller wheels 146 along with the carrier 62 and the complete forming tube assembly 46 are moveable relative to the wrapper frame 144 in a direction depicted by arrow 148 at an angle α with respect to the horizontal surface 44 and the longitudinal line 21. Left tension spring mechanism 63L is secured between the frame 144 and the left shoulder section 48 and right tension spring mechanism 63R is secured between the frame 144 and the right shoulder section 50 (FIGS. 3 and 12). Left and right tension spring mechanisms 63L, 63R independently bias the left and right shoulder sections 48, 50 respectively downwardly relative to the frame 144 and, hence, upon or in sliding engagement with bales 16 as the bales 16 travel through the central volume 57 of the forming tube 46.
  • The independent movement of left and right shoulder sections 48, 50 via the pivot assemblies 60 in combination with the movement of the carrier 62 via the cam assemblies 138, as more fully discussed herein below, allows variable size bales 16 to be received through the forming tube 46 and also forms the plastic film tube 47 having a size/circumference as needed for a snug fit around the bales regardless of the bale size.
  • Left and right form tube shoulder sections 48, 50 include left and right inner form tube sections 86, 88 respectively. The inner form tube sections 86, 88 are each supported on a frame formed by an upper beam member 85, side beam member 87 and rear connecting plate member 89. The upper beam members 85 are pivotally secured to arms 61 at pivot axes 50R, 48L. The lead-in guides 52, 54 are secured to the forward end of beam members 85, 87, whereas the rear connecting members 89 are secured to the rear end of the beam members 85, 87 and to the inner form tube sections 86, 88. Hence, the left and right inner form tube sections 86, 88 are affixed to and supported by the frame members 85, 87 and 89 in the left and right form tube sections 48, 50 respectively and move as described herein above in connection with the left and right form tube sections 48, 50. As more fully described herein below, the plastic film 40 at least partially travels over the inner form tube sections 86, 88 so as to form the plastic film tube 47.
  • Left inner form tube section 86 includes a left lower inturned lip section 90, a left mid wall section 94 and a left upper crossover triangular section 102. Similarly, the right inner form tube section 88 includes a right lower inturned lip section 92, a right mid wall section 96 and a right upper crossover triangular section 104.
  • Left and right inner form tube sections 86, 88 are essentially mirror images of one another and both include a forward nosing 98, 100 and rear edges 99, 101. The rear edges 99, 101 are affixed to the rear connecting plate members 89 as described herein above for thereby supporting the inner form tube sections 89, 88 as shown. The mid wall sections 94, 96 include a tapered leading edge 94E, 96E respectively. As diagrammatically depicted and shown in FIG. 10, leading edges 94E, 96E are at an angle α with respect to the horizontal surface 44 and at the same angle α as discussed herein above in connection with the direction of travel of carrier 62. That is, leading edges 94E, 96E are parallel with the direction of travel of carrier 62 as depicted by arrow 148.
  • The upper crossover triangular section 102 includes a leading edge 102E terminating at a rear termination point 106. Similarly, the upper crossover triangular section 104 includes a leading edge 104E terminating at a rear termination point 108. The upper crossover triangular sections 102, 104 overlap one another as shown at the overlap area 110 and, more particularly, section 104 and its termination point 108 are located above/over section 102 and its termination point 106. As further described herein below, this overlap allows the plastic film edge 126 to be placed over the plastic film edge 128 for heat sealing purposes and forming the plastic film tube 47.
  • Mid wall section 94 defines an exterior surface 96X and an interior surface 96I. Similarly, mid wall section 96 defines an exterior surface 96X and an interior surface 96I. Left upper crossover triangular section 102 defines an exterior surface 102X and an interior surface 102I. Similarly, right upper crossover triangular section 104 defines an exterior surface 104X and an interior surface 104I.
  • The film unfolding section 34 is located immediately below the plastic film forming tube 46 and conveyor 129. Film unfolding section 34 includes a guide plate 64 that is generally parallel with the upper conveying surface 130 of conveyor 129. Guide plate 64 includes left and right side edges 66, 68 that are curved upwardly and define upturned lips 66L, 68R respectively. Guide plate 64 also includes a forward triangular shaped end 70 and rear end 71. Forward end 70 includes left and right angular edges 72, 74 that are joined at a forward terminal point 76. Left angular edge 72 is joined with left side edge 66 and right angular edge 74 is joined with right side edge 68. Forward terminal point 76 is rounded or may additionally include a barb 78 that extends downwardly and between the longitudinally extending rollers 114, 115. Left and right side edges 66, 68 are parallel to one another and to the longitudinal line 21. Left and right angular edges 72, 74, as best seen in FIGS. 7 and 11, are at an angle β with respect to the longitudinal line 21. Additionally, angular edge 72 is parallel with pivot axes 50R, 62R of right pivot assemblies 60 and perpendicular with the pivot axes 48L, 62L of the left pivot assemblies 60. Angular edge 74 is parallel with pivot axes 48L, 62L of left pivot assemblies 60 and perpendicular with the pivot axes 50R, 62R of the right pivot assemblies 60.
  • A second or vertical guide plate 80 extends vertically upwardly and generally perpendicular to the guide plate 64. Vertical plate 80 includes a first lower edge 82, a second upper edge 84 and vertical side edges 80L and 80R. The left side edge 80L is adjacent the nosing 98 of left inner form tube section 86 and the right edge 80R is adjacent the nosing 100 of right inner from tube section 88. Lower edge 82 is adjacent to and can be affixed to the guide plate 64. Upper edge 84 includes a backwardly extending lip 84B that is curved towards the upper conveying surface 130 of conveyor 129. Lower edge 82 includes a forwardly extending lip 82F that is curved towards the forward triangular shaped end 70 of guide plate 64. As best seen in FIG. 10, triangular end 70 can be affixed or integrally formed with the vertical plate 80 and joined at the forwardly extending lip 82F.
  • An elongate guide member or roller 118 is located adjacent to the vertical plate member 80 and the forward end 70 of guide plate 64. Preferably, the outer diameter of roller 118 is substantially the same as the curvature of the forwardly extending lip 82F and lip 82F partially surrounds the roller 118 as best seen in FIG. 10. However, the outside surface 118S of roller 118 is sufficiently spaced from the guide plate forward end 70, the lip 82F and the vertical plate 80 such that plastic film 40 can readily and easily travel therebetween. Roller 118 is adapted to and rotates about axis 118A. Elongate guide member 118 is substantially perpendicular to the longitudinally extending rollers 114, 115 and the guide plate side edges 66, 68.
  • The longitudinally extending elongate guide members or roller 114 and 115 are parallel to one another and are located vertically below and adjacent the guide plate 64. The exterior surfaces 114S and 115S of rollers 114 and 115 respectively are spaced from each other so as to form an elongate slot 112 having a width such that plastic film 40 can readily and easily travel therethrough and between the roller 114, 155. Barb 78 of the guide plate 64 extends downwardly between roller 114, 115 and to the elongate slot 115 as best seen in FIG. 9. Rollers 114, 115 are adapted to rotate about their longitudinal axes 114A, 115A respectively. Additionally, rollers 114, 115 are substantially parallel with left and right side edges 66, 68 of the guide plate 64 and have a longitudinal length which is greater than the width W of the folded plastic film 40 on the plastic film roll 14.
  • A longitudinally extending elongate guide member or roller 116 is located below rollers 114, 155 and is substantially parallel therewith. Guide roller 116 is adapted to rotate about longitudinal axis 116A and has an exterior surface 116S. Roller 116, similar to rollers 114, 115, has a longitudinal length which is greater than the width W of the folded plastic film 40 on the film roll 14. As shown in FIGS. 6 and 12, lower guide roller 116 is located vertically directly below one of the rollers 114, 115 with its exterior surface 116A vertically below and aligned with the elongate slot 112.
  • Referring now more particularly to FIGS. 4-6, the conveyor 129 is located immediately above guide plate 64 and below the plastic film forming tube 46. That is, conveyer 129 is generally sandwiched between the guide plate 64 and the forming tube 46. Conveyor 129, as mentioned herein above, includes a conveying surface 130. Conveyor 129 further includes a receiving end 132 and an outlet end 134. Receiving end 132 is adjacent the inlet orifice 56 and outlet end 134 is adjacent the outlet orifice 58. In the preferred embodiment as mentioned herein above, conveying surface 130 is provided on an endless belt conveyor 129; however, conveying surface 130 can be any low-friction surface whereupon the plastic film 40 and bales 16 can easily be traversed.
  • Wrapper section conveyer 129, guide plate 64 and vertical plate 80 are mounted on the frame 144 of the wrapper section 20 in a cantilever fashion. As shown diagrammatically in FIG. 10 and in the perspective view of the wrapper section in FIG. 12, horizontal cantilever beams 150 are provided on both sides of the conveyor 129 and are affixed, at their rear ends 152, to the frame 144. The beams forward ends 154 are therefore cantilevered from and extend out from the frame 144 as best depicted in FIG. 10. The vertical plate 80 is affixed to the forward ends 154 of the beams 150. The guide plate 64 is also affixed to the beams forward ends 154 such as with fasteners 156. The conveyor 129 is supported on and between the beams 150 with the conveyor receiving end 132 adjacent the beams forward ends 154 and the conveyor outlet end 134 adjacent the beams rear ends 152. As should now be appreciated, the conveyor receiving end 132, vertical plate 80 and guide plate 64 are cantilevered and extend between the forming collar 46 and the longitudinal rollers 114, 115 and 116. Hence, the plastic film 40 can be delivered from the rolls 14 normal to the longitudinal (the direction of travel of bales 16) of the apparatus 10 and underneath the film unfolding section 34 and tube forming section 36.
  • As best depicted in FIGS. 3-6, the plastic film 40 is provided on rolls 14 in a folded configuration wherein the overall folded width of the film/web is depicted by the letter W. In its folded configuration, plastic film or web 40 includes first and second sides 120, 122 joined along a longitudinal folded edge 124. As shown in FIG. 6, first plastic film side 120 has an outer or first longitudinal edge 126 and second plastic film side 122 has an outer or second longitudinal edge 128, and the two sides 120, 122 are joined along the longitudinal folded edge 124. The first and second sides 120, 122 are equal in size and have a width WS substantially equal to the plastic film roll width W. The width WS of each plastic film side 120, 122 is the distance between their respective outer first and second longitudinal edges 126, 128 and the longitudinal folded edge 124. Therefore, the overall total width of the plastic film/web 40 is two times that of the roll width W.
  • In operation, for unfolding the folded plastic film or web 40 as it is provided from roll 14 and forming it into a plastic film tube 47, the folded plastic film 40 is unwound from the roll 14 and is first delivered or travels around the guide roller 116 and up through the longitudinal slot 112 between the guide rollers 114, 115. The first plastic film side 120 then travels around the longitudinal guide roller 115 towards the right side edge 68 and the right angular edge 74 of guide plate 64. Similarly, the second plastic film side 122 travels around the longitudinal guide roller 114 towards the left side edge 66 and the left angular edge 72 of guide plate 64.
  • The part of the plastic film side 120 that travels to and slides around the guide plate side edge 68 (the “plastic film longitudinal right side”) then travels generally vertically upwardly towards the right inner forming tube section 88; slides over the mid wall exterior surface 96X and the right crossover triangular section exterior surface 104X; around the tapered leading edges 96E and 104E of mid wall 96 and crossover triangular section 104 respectively; and, finally, along the mid wall interior surface 96I and the right crossover triangular section interior surface 104I. Similarly, the part of the plastic film side 122 that travels to and slides around the guide plate side edge 66 (the “plastic film longitudinal left side”) then travels generally vertically upwardly towards the right inner forming tube section 86; slides over the mid wall exterior surface 94X and the right crossover triangular section exterior surface 102X; around the tapered leading edges 94E and 102E of mid wall 94 and crossover triangular section 102 respectively; and, finally, along the mid wall interior surface 94I and the right crossover triangular section interior surface 102I. Because the triangular section 104 is above the triangular section 102, the outer longitudinal edge 126 of the plastic film side 120 is located on top of the longitudinal edge 128 of the plastic film side 122 and, hence, on the exterior of the formed plastic tube 47.
  • The part of the plastic film side 120 adjacent the folded edge 124 that travels over the right angular edge 74 and the plastic film side 122 adjacent the folded edge 124 that travels over the left angular edge 72 (the “plastic film longitudinal middle section”), as best seen in FIG. 4, then travels: over the top of the guide plate forward triangular end 70: around the guide roller 118; vertically upwardly along the vertical plate 89; over the vertical plate upper edge 84; and, finally, onto the conveyor surface 130 of conveyor 129. It is noted that the longitudinal folded edge 124 travels: through the elongate slot 112 between guide rollers 114, 115; over the barb 78 at the guide plate forward terminal point 76; over the top and at the center of the guide plate forward triangular end 70: around the guide roller 118; vertically upwardly and along the vertical plate 89; over the vertical plate upper edge 84; and, finally, onto about the center of the conveyor surface 130 of conveyor 129.
  • As should now be appreciated, the plastic film tube 47 is thus formed by the plastic film longitudinal middle section traveling along the conveyor surface 130, the plastic film longitudinal left side traveling along the interior surfaces of the left inner form tube section 86 and the plastic film longitudinal right side traveling along the interior surfaces of the right inner form tube section 88. Additionally, as bales 16 are received through the forming tube inlet orifice 56, they traverse onto the plastic film longitudinal middle section over the conveyor surface 130 and into the central cavity 57 whereby they are enveloped within the plastic film tube 47. The plastic film overlapping edges 120, 122 are then heat sealed and the tube 47 is cut and sealed between individual bales with sealing section 23 for individually sealing each bale 16.
  • Advantageously, as should now also be appreciated, the left and right forming collar shoulder sections 48, 50 pivot about their respective pivot assemblies 60 and slide vertically upwardly and backwardly along the cam assemblies 138 for thereby receiving and wrapping variable sized bales 16 and for accommodating and wrapping bales which are not centered left/right on the conveyor surface 130. More particularly, the forming collar 46, in its retracted position as shown in FIGS. 4-11, will produce its smallest size plastic tube 47 defined by the size of the inner form tube sections 86, 88 and conveying surface 130. However, as best shown in FIGS. 14-17, the forming tube shoulder sections 48, 50 and their inner form tube sections 86, 88 pivot about their respective pivot assemblies 60 and slide vertically upwardly and backwardly along the cam assemblies 138 to expanded positions dictated by the size of the bales 16 and their left/right position on the conveyor surface for thereby forming an appropriate larger size plastic tube that will fit snugly on the bale 16.
  • As shown in FIGS. 14 and 17, when a larger bale 16 or a bale which is, for example, located more toward the left side of the conveyor comes in contact with the lead-in guide 52, the left collar shoulder section 48 will pivot about its pivot assemblies 60 and travel upwardly and backwardly in a direction depicted by arrow 158. The direction of arrow 158 is ideally parallel to the left angular edge 72 of the guide plate forward triangular shape 70 and also parallel to the left inner forming collar leading edge 94E, and the pivot assemblies 60 and length of arms 61 are adapted to produce movement of the left shoulder section approximately, but not exactly, in the direction of arrow 158. Accordingly, shoulder section 48 will move backwardly a distance B and a corresponding vertical distance V and a leftward horizontal distance H, and the plastic tube 47 that will be formed over the bale will correspond thereto and fit snugly thereon. The right shoulder section 50, as described hereinabove, will move independent of shoulder section 48 about its pivot assemblies 60 causing shoulder section 50 to similarly move by a bale 16 contacting its lead-in guide 54 a vertical distance V but a rightward horizontal distance H. Therefore, with both shoulder sections 48, 50 in their maximum expanded positions as a result of pivoting about pivot assemblies 60, the forming collar/tube 46 will form a plastic tube 47 and accommodate a bale having a width equal to the forming collar retracted position width plus twice the horizontal distance H and a height equal to the forming collar height plus the vertical distance V.
  • So as to accommodate bales which are yet taller in height, as described hereinabove, both shoulder sections 48, 50 are pivotally supported with their respective pivot assemblies 60 on the common carriage 62 which is itself moveable vertically upwardly and backwardly along the cam assemblies 138. More particularly, as best seen in FIGS. 15 and 16 wherein the left and right shoulder sections are shown not pivoted about their pivot assemblies 60, in their retracted positions the shoulder sections 48, 50 are relatively close to conveyor surface 130 (FIG. 15). However, when a taller bale 16 comes in contact with one or both the lead-in guides 52, 54, the carriage 62 along with both the left and right collar shoulder sections 48, 50 will slide and travel via the cam assemblies 138 upwardly and backwardly in a direction depicted by arrow 148. Accordingly, carrier 62 and shoulder section 48, 50 will move backwardly a distance B2 and vertically upwardly a distance V2, and the plastic tube 47 that will be formed over the bale will correspond thereto and fit snugly thereon. Therefore, with both shoulder sections 48, 50 not pivoted about their pivot assemblies 60, in their maximum expanded positions as a result of the carriage traveling along the cam assemblies 138, the forming collar/tube 46 will form a plastic tube 47 and accommodate a bale having a height equal to the forming collar retracted position height plus a vertical distance of V2.
  • Finally, with both shoulder sections 48, 50 in their maximum expanded positions as a result of pivoting about pivot assemblies 60 as well as a result of the carriage traveling along the cam assemblies 138, the forming collar/tube 46 will form a plastic tube 47 and accommodate a bale having a width equal to the forming collar retracted position width plus twice the horizontal distance H and a height equal to the forming collar height plus the vertical distances V and V2.
  • While this invention has been described as having an exemplary design, the present invention may be further modified within the spirit and scope of this disclosure.
  • This application is therefore intended to cover any variations, uses, or adaptations of the invention using its general principles.

Claims (26)

What is claimed is:
1. An apparatus for forming elongate film into a tube around variable size articles, said apparatus comprising:
a conveying surface adapted to carry the articles being wrapped;
a forming collar adapted to wrap film around the articles carried on said conveying surface, said forming collar including left and right sections, said left section located adjacent a left side of said conveying surface and said right section located adjacent a right side of said conveying surface;
wherein said left and right forming collar sections each include an inside surface, an outside surface and a leading edge;
wherein elongate film having a central area and left and right sides is formed into a tube by directing: the central film area onto said conveying surface; the left film side along said forming collar left section outside surface, around its leading edge and along its inside surface; and, the right film side along said forming collar right section outside surface, around its leading edge and along its inside surface; and,
wherein said left and right forming collar sections are selectively movable relative to said carrying surface thereby selectively varying the tube size, whereby variable sized articles placed on the film central area and carried by said conveying surface in a longitudinal direction between said forming collar sections may be received in the formed film tube.
2. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said left and right forming collar sections are each independently pivotally supported on a frame and are effectively moveable perpendicular to said longitudinal direction.
3. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said left and right forming collar sections are each independently pivotally supported on a frame and are effectively moveable horizontally perpendicular to said longitudinal direction and vertically perpendicular to said longitudinal direction.
4. The apparatus of claim 1 further comprising:
a guide plate having a left angular edge and a right angular edge;
wherein the elongate film central area is directed over said left and right angular edges prior to being directed onto the conveying surface; and,
wherein said forming collar left section is movable in a direction parallel to said left angular edge and said forming collar right section is movable in a direction parallel to said right angular edge.
5. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein said forming collar left section is pivotally supported on a frame and is thereby movable in a direction parallel to said left angular edge, and said forming collar right section is pivotally supported on the frame and is thereby movable in a direction parallel to said right angular edge.
6. The apparatus of claim 4 further comprising a conveyor defining said carrying surface and adapted to carry the articles being wrapped.
7. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein said left and right forming collar sections each include a lead-in guide, said lead-in guides adapted to come in contact with the articles as they travel in said longitudinal direction and thereby cause said movement of its forming collar section.
8. The apparatus of claim 1 further comprising:
a guide plate having a left angular edge and a right angular edge;
wherein the elongate film central area is directed over said left and right angular edges prior to being directed onto the conveying surface; and,
wherein said forming collar left section is movable in a direction parallel to both said left angular edge and said leading edge of said left forming collar section, and said forming collar right section is movable in a direction parallel to both said right angular edge and said leading edge of said right forming collar section.
9. The apparatus of claim 8 wherein said left and right forming collar sections are supported on a carrier and said carrier is movable in a direction parallel to said leading edges of said forming collar sections.
10. The apparatus of claim 8 wherein said left and right forming collar sections are each independently pivotally supported on a carrier and said carrier is movable in a direction parallel to said leading edges of said forming collar sections.
11. The apparatus of claim 8 wherein said forming collar left section is pivotally supported on a frame and is thereby movable in a direction approximately parallel to both said left angular edge and said leading edge of said left forming collar section, and said forming collar right section is pivotally supported on the frame and is thereby movable in a direction approximately parallel to both said right angular edge and said leading edge of said right forming collar section.
12. The apparatus of claim 8 further comprising a conveyor defining said carrying surface and adapted to carry the articles being wrapped.
13. The apparatus of claim 8 wherein said left and right forming collar sections each include a lead-in guide, said lead-in guides adapted to come in contact with the articles as they travel in said longitudinal direction and thereby cause said movement of its forming collar section.
14. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said left and right forming collar sections are each independently supported on a carrier and said carrier is movable in a direction parallel to said leading edges of said forming collar sections.
15. The apparatus of claim 14 further comprising:
a guide plate having a left angular edge and a right angular edge;
wherein the elongate film central area is directed over said left and right angular edges prior to being directed onto the conveying surface; and,
wherein said forming collar left section is pivotally supported on said carrier and is thereby movable in a direction parallel to said left angular edge and said forming collar right section is pivotally supported on said carrier and is thereby movable in a direction parallel to said right angular edge.
16. The apparatus of claim 15 wherein said left and right forming collar sections each include a lead-in guide, said lead-in guides adapted to come in contact with the articles as they travel in said longitudinal direction and thereby cause said movement of its forming collar section.
17. The apparatus of claim 16 further comprising a conveyor defining said carrying surface and adapted to carry the articles being wrapped.
18. The apparatus of claim 1 further comprising a conveyor defining said carrying surface and adapted to carry the articles being wrapped.
19. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said left and right forming collar sections each include a lead-in guide, said lead-in guides adapted to come in contact with the articles as they travel in said longitudinal direction and thereby cause said movement of its forming collar section.
20. An apparatus for forming elongate film into a tube around variable sized articles, said apparatus comprising:
a conveying surface adapted to carry the articles being wrapped;
a forming collar adapted to wrap film around the articles carried on said conveying surface, said forming collar including left and right sections, said left section located adjacent a left side of said conveying surface and said right section located adjacent a right side of said conveying surface;
wherein said left and right forming collar sections each include an inside surface, an outside surface and a leading edge;
wherein elongate film having a central area and left and right sides is formed into a tube by directing: the central film area onto said conveying surface; the left film side along said forming collar left section outside surface, around its leading edge and along its inside surface; and, the right film side along said forming collar right section outside surface, around its leading edge and along its inside surface; and,
wherein said left and right forming collar sections are supported on a carrier and said carrier is movable relative to said carrying surface thereby selectively varying the tube size, whereby variable sized articles placed on the film central area and carried by said conveying surface in a longitudinal direction between said forming collar sections may be received in the formed film tube.
21. The apparatus of claim 20 wherein said carrier is movable in a direction parallel to said leading edges of said forming collar sections.
22. The apparatus of claim 20 further comprising:
a guide plate having a left angular edge and a right angular edge;
wherein the elongate film central area is directed over said left and right angular edges prior to being directed onto the conveying surface; and,
wherein said forming collar left section is movable in a direction parallel to said left angular edge and said forming collar right section is movable in a direction parallel to said right angular edge.
23. The apparatus of claim 22 wherein said left and right forming collar sections each include a lead-in guide, said lead-in guides adapted to come in contact with the articles as they travel in said longitudinal direction and thereby cause said movement of its forming collar section.
24. The apparatus of claim 23 further comprising a conveyor defining said carrying surface and adapted to carry the articles being wrapped.
25. The apparatus of claim 20 wherein said left and right forming collar sections each include a lead-in guide, said lead-in guides adapted to come in contact with the articles as they travel in said longitudinal direction and thereby cause said movement of its forming collar section.
26. The apparatus of claim 20 further comprising a conveyor defining said carrying surface and adapted to carry the articles being wrapped.
US13/317,572 2011-10-21 2011-10-21 Apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles Abandoned US20130097965A1 (en)

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Applications Claiming Priority (14)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US13/317,572 US20130097965A1 (en) 2011-10-21 2011-10-21 Apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles
US13/373,201 US9038355B2 (en) 2011-10-21 2011-11-08 Method and apparatus for unfolding folded plastic film for use in forming a packaging tube
US13/374,731 US20130097966A1 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-01-10 Apparatus for joining overlapped side edges of plastic film sheet formed into elongate tube
CA2850359A CA2850359A1 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-09 Apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles
PCT/US2012/059319 WO2013059022A2 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-09 Apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles
GB1405473.8A GB2509027A (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-09 Apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles
AU2012326539A AU2012326539A1 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-09 Apparatus for forming elongate plastic film into a tube around variable size articles
DE112012004359.6T DE112012004359T5 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-09 Device for forming a long-sliped plastic foil to a tube for items of variable size
CA2850368A CA2850368A1 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-10 Method and apparatus for unfolding folded plastic film for use in forming a packaging tube
PCT/US2012/059580 WO2013059051A1 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-10 Method and apparatus for unfolding folded plastic film for use in forming a packaging tube
GB1405472.0A GB2509026A (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-10 Method and apparatus for unfolding folded plastic film for use in forming a packaging tube
AU2012326476A AU2012326476A1 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-10 Method and apparatus for unfolding folded plastic film for use in forming a packaging tube
DE112012004380.4T DE112012004380T5 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-10 A method and apparatus for unfolding folded plastic film for use in forming a packaging tube
PCT/US2012/059594 WO2013059052A1 (en) 2011-10-21 2012-10-10 Apparatus for joining overlapped side edges of plastic film sheet formed into elongate tube

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US13/373,201 Active 2032-04-08 US9038355B2 (en) 2011-10-21 2011-11-08 Method and apparatus for unfolding folded plastic film for use in forming a packaging tube

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WO2013059051A1 (en) 2013-04-25
CA2850359A1 (en) 2013-04-25
AU2012326539A1 (en) 2014-05-08
AU2012326476A1 (en) 2014-05-08
DE112012004359T5 (en) 2014-07-31
GB2509027A (en) 2014-06-18
CA2850368A1 (en) 2013-04-25
GB201405473D0 (en) 2014-05-07
WO2013059022A2 (en) 2013-04-25
US20130097976A1 (en) 2013-04-25
WO2013059022A3 (en) 2014-05-01
DE112012004380T5 (en) 2014-08-21
US9038355B2 (en) 2015-05-26

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