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Title:
SYSTEM FOR QUICKLY COUPLING HEALD FRAMES TO THE RESPECTIVE ACTUATING TIE RODS IN A WEAVING LOOM
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2017/081636
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A system for quickly coupling heald frames (H) to the respective actuating tie rods (1) in a weaving loom, of the type in which said tie rods (1) are arranged in groups of adjacent tie rods which operate by lateral coupling, on a same connection area (3) of the heald frames (H) and in which each one of said tie rods (1) is provided with a semi-automatic push- coupling device (2) apt to be push-coupled to a respective heald frame connection (3). The system comprises one multiple lever support (5) apt to house all the active tie rods (la) of each one of said groups of tie rods in a pre-coupling position, in which pre-coupling position the coupling device (2a) of each active tie rod (1a) is laterally aligned to the respective heald frame connection (3) and is adjacent to the vertical insertion path of said heald frame (H) with a predetermined clearance (11). The multiple lever support (5) is apt to move said active tie rods (la) between: a. said pre-coupling position, and b. a coupling position, wherein the coupling devices (2) of all the active actuating tie rods (1) are engaged with the respective heald frame connections (3).

Inventors:
PELIZZARI, Pierangelo (Via Cav. Gianni Radici 4, Colzate, 24020, IT)
ALGHISI, Francesco (Via Cav. Gianni Radici 4, Colzate, 24020, IT)
RABOLINI, Fabio (Via Cav. Gianni Radici 4, Colzate, 24020, IT)
Application Number:
IB2016/056772
Publication Date:
May 18, 2017
Filing Date:
November 10, 2016
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
ITEMA S.P.A. (Via Cav. Gianni Radici 4, Colzate, 24020, IT)
International Classes:
D03C9/06
Foreign References:
US5518040A1996-05-21
US5483995A1996-01-16
US5810055A1998-09-22
DE3541042C11987-01-29
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
FAGGIONI, Marco et al. (FUMERO S.r.l, Via S. Agnese 12, Milano, 20123, IT)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1) System for quickly coupling heald frames (H) to the respective actuating tie rods (1) in a weaving loom, of the type in which said tie rods (1) are arranged in groups of adjacent tie rods which operate, by lateral coupling, on a same connection area (3) of the heald frames (H) and in which each one of said tie rods (1) is provided with a semi-automatic push- coupling device (2) apt to be push-coupled to a respective heald frame connection (3),

characterized in that it comprises one multiple lever support (5) apt to house in a pre-coupling position all the active tie rods (la) of each one of said groups of tie rods, in which pre- coupling position the coupling device (2a) of each active tie rod (la) is laterally aligned to the respective heald frame con- nection (3) and is adjacent to the vertical insertion path of said heald frame (H) with a predetermined clearance (11) ,

in that said multiple lever support (5) is apt to move said active tie rods (la) between:

a. said pre-coupling position, and

b. a coupling position, wherein the coupling devices (2) of all the active actuating tie rods (1) are engaged with the respective heald frame connections (3) ,

and in that, each heald frame (H) in said pre-coupling position directly leans, through its connections (3), on a support sur- face (2s) of the respective coupling devices (2a) , when inserted into its working position.

2) A heald frame quick coupling system as in claim 1, wherein said multiple lever support (5) is hinged on the loom or on a support (4) integral with the loom.

3) A heald frame quick coupling system as in claim 2, wherein said multiple lever support (5) is hinged along a rotational axis (8) , which is parallel to a loom side (S) , to a fixed bracket (4) integral with the loom, housing the inactive tie rods (lr) ,

4) A heald frame quick coupling system as in claim 3, wherein said multiple lever support (5) is provided with an ac- tive rack (6) , parallel to said rotational axis (8) , for housing the active tie rods (la) .

5) A heald frame quick coupling system as in claim 1, wherein said multiple lever support can slide on the loom or on a support integral with the loom.

6) A heald frame quick coupling system as in claims 2 to 5, wherein said multiple lever support (5) can take the following positions:

a. a first stable pre-coupling position, wherein said multiple lever support (5) is locked against rota¬ tion/translation with respect to the loom and said active rack (6) houses the respective active tie rods (la) in a stable equilibrium position;

b. a second stable rest position wherein said multiple lever support (5) is locked against rotation/translation with respect to the loom and said multiple lever support (5) does not interfere with the movement trajectory of said active tie rods (1) coupled to the heald frames (H) or with other moving parts of the loom;

c. a third temporary coupling position wherein said multiple lever support (5) is made to rotate/translate until said active rack (6) carries the hooks of all the active tie rods (la) from the precoupling position (2a) to the coupling position (2) on the corresponding connections (3) of the heald frames (H) .

7) A heald frame quick coupling system as in claim 6, in which, in said first and second stable positions, the multiple lever support (5) is locked against rotation/translation with respect to the loom by the engagement of a positioning or fas- tening element provided on said lever support (5) in corresponding seats (10a, lOr) formed on said loom or on a support (4) integral with the loom.

8) A heald frame quick coupling system as in claim 7, wherein in said first stable pre-coupling position, the active rack (6) is in such a position that the tie rods (la) housed in the same have a moderate negative inclination with respect to the vertical.

9) A heald frame quick coupling system as in claim 7, wherein said support surface is formed by the sliding surface (2s) of the locking pawls (2n) of the coupling devices (2a) .

Description:
SYSTEM FOR QUICKLY COUPLING HEALD FRAMES TO THE RESPECTIVE ACTUATING TIE RODS IN A WEAVING LOOM

DESCRIPTION

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a system for quickly coupling heald frames in a weaving loom. In particular, the invention relates to a coupling system - in looms in which the tie rods coupling is carried out in the horizontal direction, i.e. laterally to the respective connections on the heald frames - which allows even a single operator to quickly and simultaneously couple all the heald frames installed each time on a loom to the respective actuating tie rods.

PRIOR STATE OF THE ART

As known, heald frames are the devices responsible for the movement of groups of warp threads, so as to form the shed. When weaving the simplest fabric, the so-called canvas, the heald frames are in number of two and the warp yarns are alternately hooked to one and the other of said frames . For fabrics having a more complex pattern, more heald frames are used even reaching the number of, for example, 24 frames, each one of them operating on a smaller number of warp threads, in order to realize more complex patterns by using warp and weft yarns of different quality or colour.

The heald frames slide inside special side guides, in a perpendicular direction in respect to the plane wherein the fabric is formed, from an upper position to a lower position with reference to said plane, and are driven in this movement by actuating tie rods coupled to each heald frame. The movement is imparted to said tie rods, in a per se known manner, by a shed- ding machine, to form a desired and predetermined fabric pattern.

Regarding their positioning with respect to the heald frames, actuating tie rods can be divided into two main categories depending on the insertion direction into the respective connections on the heald frames.

In a first one of said two categories, this insertion di- rection is substantially vertical, i.e. the tie rods are placed along the heald frame insertion path and, when positioned under the frame, they constitute the support thereof when the heald frames are inserted into the loom, even before the mutual cou- pling device between the actuating tie rods and the respective connections on the heald frames is operated. This allows the assembling of the heald frames on the loom to be performed by a single operator, who first places the heald frames on the tie rods and, subsequently, activates the individual coupling devic- es. Several examples of this first category of actuating tie rods are disclosed in patents US-5518040, US-5483995 and US- 5810055.

Conversely, in the second category of actuating tie rods; the insertion direction is substantially horizontal, i.e. the actuating tie rods are arranged in waiting position at the side of the heald frame insertion path and they are coupled to the respective connections on the heald frames following a substantially horizontal insertion direction. Due to this reason, while the actuating tie rods are in said waiting position, they cannot constitute a support for the heald frames while these latter are inserted in the loom. Consequently, in this type of looms, the installation of the heald frames in the loom needs to be performed by two operators: a first operator keeping each heald frame duly positioned and balanced and a second operator later- ally coupling the actuating tie rods to the respective connections on the heald frames. An example of this second category of actuating tie rods is disclosed in the patent EP-1322804 by Staubli. The present invention pertains to this second category of actuating tie rods.

The actuating tie rods disclosed in patent EP-1322804 have been particularly appreciated by the market because they are provided with particularly effective semi-automatic coupling devices which allow, with a simple and therefore low-cost construction, a quick and safe installation of heald frames in the loom. These semi-automatic coupling devices comprise, in addition to the hook itself, a locking pawl pivoted on the hook and pushed into the locked position by respective spring means arranged inside the hook. Such tilting locking pawl is also provided with an engagement surface apt to cause the rotation of the pawl itself towards the opening position when the coupling device is pushed in position on the corresponding connection on the heald frame. This allows to couple in a single movement the actuating tie rods to the heald frames, while the click of the locking pawl indicates with certainty the achievement of the correct coupling position.

However, this coupling operation must be repeated on every coupling point of each heald frame, usually provided at the lower part of the heald frame (though there are heald frames with coupling points on the upper part of the heald frame) and for each heald frame of the loom. Therefore, although each single coupling operation is rather quick, coupling all the heald frames of the loom is still quite a time-consuming operation, also considering that, in the most frequent case of access from the lower area of the heald frames, said access is not particularly easy and thus requires a gradual implementation of the coupling phase, generally starting from the farthest heald frame from the operator while the other frames are not yet inserted in their working position, to allow the operator an easier access to the coupling position. Moreover, as already said above, the simultaneous presence of two operators at the loom is required for the heald frame coupling operation: a first operator will in fact insert in succession the heald frames into the guides keeping them suspended in the correct position, while the second operator in turn will couple said heald franes to the relative actuating tie rods.

A first object of the present invention is therefore to provide a quick coupling system which allows to simultaneously couple a plurality of heald frames to the respective actuating tie rods, regardless of the number. of frames, and thereby after having already placed all the heald frames in their standard working position.

A second object of the present invention, which is strictly connected and functional to the above mentioned first object, is then to allow the heald frame coupling and uncoupling operations to be entirely accomplished by a single operator, thus eliminating the need of the simultaneous presence of two opera- tors on the same loom for performing these operations.

Finally, a last object of the present invention is also that this coupling system allows to speed up the heald frame uncoupling and removing operations, from the respective actuating tie rods, at the end of the weaving process.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

These objects are achieved by means of a system for quickly coupling heald frames to the respective actuating tie rods in a weaving loom of the type in which said tie rods are arranged in groups of adjacent tie rods which operate, by lateral coupling, on a same connection area of the heald frames and wherein each one of said tie rods is provided with a semi-automatic push- coupling device apt to be push-coupled to a respective heald frame connection, characterized in that it comprises a single multiple lever support, apt to house in a pre-coupling position all the active tie rods of each one of said groups of tie rods, in which pre-coupling position the coupling device of each active tie rod is laterally aligned to the respective heald frame connection and is adjacent to the vertical insertion path of said heald frame with a predetermined clearance, in that said multiple lever support is apt to move said active tie rods between said pre-coupling position and a coupling position wherein the coupling devices of all the active actuating tie rods are engaged with the respective heald frame connections and in that each heald frame in said pre-coupling position directly leans, through its connections, on a support surface of the respective coupling devices (2a) , when inserted into its working position. Other preferred features of the quick coupling system for heald frames of the present invention are defined in the dependent claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Further features and advantages of the heald frames quick coupling system according to the present invention will anyhow become more evident from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment of said system, given as a mere and non- limiting example and illustrated in the attached drawings, wherein:

Fig. 1 is a perspective and schematic view of the inner face of a loom side, wherein the heald frames quick coupling system of the present invention is applied, in the pre-coupling position, i.e. when the heald frames are inserted into their working position;

Fig. 2 is a front view of the heald frames quick coupling system of the invention, in the same position of Fig. 1;

Fig. 2A is an enlarged and partially cross-sectional view showing in greater detail the detail enclosed in the box of Fig. 2 and, in the secondary plane, a tie rod 1 with respective hook 2 when in a coupled position with the heald frame;

Fig. 3 is a view similar to Fig. 2, wherein the tie rods of the shedding machine are in coupled position with the heald frames ;

Fig. 3A is an enlarged view showing in greater detail the detail in the box of Fig. 3; and

Fig. 4 is a view similar to Fig. 2, in which the multiple lever support is in its rest position while the loom is in operation.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

According to the present invention, in order to achieve the objects highlighted above with a constructively simple solution of immediate application also to the existing looms, the possibility of inserting on the loom, at each group of adjacent tie rods, a multiple lever support was studied. Such multiple lever should allow, by a single move of the operator, to couple to the respective heald frames all the active tie rods of each group and meanwhile maintain the actuating tie rods, in the pre-coupling position, in such a position as to be a stable sup- port for the heald frames.

The invention has been developed after the successful con- elusion of these studies, with the further object of coordinating the functionality of said multiple lever support of the active tie rods, i.e. those which are each actually intended to drive the reciprocating movement of a heald frame, with that of the already known support bracket of the inactive tie rods (see Fig. 2, refs. 4 and lr) , i.e. those tie rods which do not actually drive any heald frame, when operating with an incomplete heald frame pack.

Finally, yet another object of said studies was to identify a multiple lever support position which could be easily accessible to the operator for its operation and at the same time did not hinder the smooth functioning of the moving parts and textile operations on the loom.

Reference is now made to Fig. 1, which illustrates in a very schematic way, with many parts removed for greater clarity, the inner face of the side S of a weaving loom. On the upper part of the side S a pair of guides G for the alternate sliding of the heald frames H in the vertical direction is fixed. As said in the introductory part, the heald frames H range from a minimum of 2 up to a variable maximum number according to the specific loom, and are placed side by side shortly spaced from each other. In Fig. 1 is represented only one heald frame H, for simplicity of illustration, , and precisely the one closest to the usual operator access position to the loom.

The alternate movement in the vertical plane is imparted to the heald frames H by a shedding machine, of which for better clearness in the drawing, is represented only one terminal lever L and the related actuating tie rod 1 of a heald frame H (such tie rod is sometimes indicated in the following also with refer- ences la and lr, just in order to identify some different working positions of the same) . Clearly, the levers L and the related tie rods 1 are in the same number of the maximum number of heald frames which can be installed on the loom, and therefore they form a compact group of several adjacent and parallel tie rods 1. The illustrated structure refers to the left side of the loom,- obviously, a similar structure is provided on the right side of the loom, where a second group of adjacent and parallel tie rods 1 will thus be located. In case of very high looms (i.e. looms intended for the production of fabrics having great height or of several fabric pieces having standard height) one or more additional groups of rods 1 are usually also provided, which are coupled to the heald frames at an intermediate position (and of course also the respective shedding machine command levers) , so as to avoid warping or deformation of the heald frames caused by the high stresses these heald frames are sub- jected throughout the weaving.

Tie rods 1 terminate at their top with a hook 2 (Fig. 3A) suitable for laterally coupling with a corresponding connection 3 provided at the lower part of the heald frame, for transmitting the movement to the latter. In the drawings a widely used in commerce type of hooks is illustrated which, thanks to the presence of a rotating pawl 2n, which is pivoted on an appendix of the hook 2, are automatically locked when snapping in position with a click, by a simple pushing operation that makes the hook 2 to couple with the respective connection 3. During this pushing operation, in fact, the sliding surface 2s of the pawl 2n slides on a corresponding surface of the connection 3 on the heald frame causing the pawl 2n to rotate to a completely opened position, against spring means provided therein. At the end of the push-coupling operation the connection 3 releases the sliding surface 2s and said spring means trigger the pawl 2n into the connection locking position.

The main feature of the quick coupling system of the present invention consists in the presence of one multiple lever support 5 for each group of adjacent tie rods, by means of which it is possible to operate the simultaneous coupling of all active rods la of said group to the respective connections 3 on the heald frames. Such multiple lever support 5 is hinged on said bracket 4 which supports, in a per se known manner, the inactive actuating tie rods lr, i.e. those tie rods which are not connected to a respective heald frame. The bracket 4, which has a generally rectangular shape protruding from the loom side S and being anchored on the same, bears a resting rack 7 (Fig.l), at the side parallel to said side S, for stably housing the inactive tie rods lr (Fig. 2) in their non-use position. The mul ¬ tiple lever support 5 is preferably formed by a rectangular structure hinged to the bracket 4 along a rotation axis 8 parallel to the side S, and the two sides of this structure which are perpendicular to the axis 8 preferably have an upward-curved shape at their ends towards the loom side S., On said ends an active rack 6 is fixed for stably housing the active tie rods la (Fig. 2) in the coupling preparatory position, or pre-coupling position, to the respective connections 3 (Fig. 2A) on the heald frames.

The shape of the multiple lever support 5 described above, as well as the way of pivoting it on the bracket 4 or on anoth- er equivalent tie rods lr support, although presently preferred, are not to be considered as limitative. Other shapes and arrangements of the multiple lever support 5 may in fact be possible and useful, depending on the specific configuration of the loom on which the system is installed, being only necessary that the lever support 5 could drive, by a single rotational or also translational movement, the shift of the entire group of active tie rods (la) between the different positions better described in the following.

The multiple lever support 5 can assume in fact two stable positions with respect to the bracket 4 - a pre-coupling position (illustrated in Fig. 2) and a rest position (illustrated in Fig. 4) - defined by the engagement of a spring pin 9 into the holes 10a and lOr, formed on a side of the bracket 4, and visible in Fig. 5 - or by any other positioning or fixing element suitable to this purpose and per se known - and a temporary cou' pling position (illustrated in Fig. 3 and in Fig. 3A) which is reached temporarily by pushing down the handle 5g (Fig. 1) of the multiple lever support 5. In fact, when moving the multiple lever support 5 to this position, the active rack 6 provided on the opposite end of the same pushes the hooks 2a of all the tie rods la from the pre-coupling position (la, 2a) to the effective coupling position (1, 2) on the corresponding heald frame connections 3. The handle 5g can preferably be itself one side of the structure that makes up the multiple lever support 5.

As clearly shown in Fig. 2, in fact, when the multiple lev- er support 5 is in its pre-coupling position, and thus with the pin 9 inserted into the hole 10a, the tie rods 1 can be posi ¬ tioned on the active rack 6 of the multiple lever support 5 (po ¬ sition indicated as la) or on the resting rack 7 of the bracket 4 (indicated as position lr) , depending on whether they have to be active and then actually attached to a heald frame or stay inactive during the subsequent weaving process.

By examining Fig. 2, it can be noted that in the pre- coupling position of the multiple lever support 5, the active rack 6 is in such a position that the tie rods la are slightly tilted backwards, i.e. they have a slight negative inclination with respect to the vertical, thus in a stable equilibrium position. This position, moreover, has been designed in such a way that the hooks 2a show a slight and pre-set clearance 11 with respect to the vertical insertion path of the heald frames H de- termined by the guides G (Figs. 1, 2A) . Thanks to this arrangement, when the heald frames H are inserted in place, they will lean with their connections 3 directly on the sliding surface 2s of the pawls 2n of the tie rods la, in a stable equilibrium position, and furthermore arranging themselves perfectly aligned to the correct pre-coupling position. Thanks to this arrangement of the multiple lever support 5 the sliding surface 2s of pawls 2n therefore forms a stable support surface for the heald frames H while installing on the loom a group of heald frames. In fact, it is clear that once the guides G located at the lateral sides of the loom are in their closed position, aligned to the heald frame lateral struts, the heald frames that are placed on the surface 2s of the pawls 2n stay in a stable equilibrium position without need of any further intervention of the operator. Consequently, in the heald frame coupling phase there is no need for the simultaneous presence of two operators anymore a same single operator, after positioning the active tie rods la on the rack 6, may in fact proceed to insert in place one by one the single heald frames H which, leaning on the pawl 2n of the hooks 2a, will remain steady in the pre-coupling position.

When all the heald frames H have been inserted in this way on the tie rods la, the hooks 2a of all the tie rods of a group of adjacent tie rods la are simultaneously coupled to the respective connections 3 on the heald frames with a single movement of the multiple lever support 5 , which is moved to the position illustrated in Fig. 3. The operation of coupling the group of tie rods located on the other side or at intermediate heald frame positions is accomplished through the identical repetition of this same operation. The whole operation of coupling the heald frames to the shedding machine tie rods 1 is thus significantly shortened and simplified, also thanks to the fact that the multiple lever supports 5 are arranged in easily accessible locations under the group of heald frames H.

The tie rods 1 which do not have to be used for the coupling of a heald frame are conversely rotated until they find a correct positioning on the resting rack 7 , assuming the rest po- sition lr, 2r, which is highly stable due to its inclination, and out of every potential interference with the working heald frames. In this regard it will also be noted that even if some tie rod 1 accidentally remains in the pre-coupling position la, although no coupling to a corresponding heald frame H is fore- seen, when the multiple lever support 5 is rotated into the coupling position (Fig. 3 and Fig. 3A) those tie rods - since they meet no resistance at all, due to the absence of a related heald frame H - would fall by gravity on the resting rack 7 , i.e. exactly where they should already be arranged for the purpose of a subsequent correct operation of the loom. Once all tie rods 1 are so coupled, the multiple lever supports 5 are moved to their rest position, illustrated in Fig. 4, and blocked there by inserting the pin 9 into the hole lOr. In this position the lever support 5 does not interfere in fact with any moving part of the loom during the whole weaving operation.

Finally, when the weaving operation ends and before removal of the heald frames H from the loom, the operator will have to reposition the active rack 6 in such a way that the positioning element 9 is in the hole 10a. At this point the operator can proceed to open the pawls 2n of each frame and to place every single tie rod 1, uncoupled from the corresponding heald frame, on the active rack 6 (position indicated as la) . Once all the tie rods 1 are in this position la, all the heald frames H will still be in a stable equilibrium position (guides G being still aligned with the heald frame side guides) and they can be re- moved from the loom always by one and the same single operator.

From the description above it is clear how the heald frame quick coupling system of the present invention has fully achieved the desired objects, allowing to perform in a rational manner the operation of coupling the tie rods 1 of a shedding machine to the heald frames H, firstly by inserting in the correct position all the heald frames necessary for the specific weaving process, which receive a stable support from the surface of the actuating tie rods themselves in their pre-coupling position and then by coupling, with a single move of the multiple lever supports 5, all said heald frames to the respective actuating tie rods in a single operation. Thanks to the system described above, it is therefore possible that a single operator accomplishes the whole heald frame H coupling operation, thus achieving the first two objects of the invention.

Moreover, also the frame release operation is considerably simplified, thus achieving also the last object of the invention, since the heald frames are always kept in a stable equilibrium position, resting on the pawls 2n, while the hooks 2 are released from the connections 3 and moved to the position 2a. Also in this case it is therefore possible that a single operator rapidly uncouples in succession all the hooks 2 from the respective heald frames H, without having to worry about maintaining said heald frames in stable equilibrium.

It is understood, however, that the invention is not to be considered as limited to the particular arrangements illustrated above, which only represent illustrative embodiments of the same, but that different variants are possible, all within the reach of a man skilled in the art, without departing from the scope of the invention itself, which is exclusively defined by the following claims.