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In the preheating area of the forming machine Referring now to FIG. 1A, the loading area of the helical grooving machine will be described in detail. This section includes a table 10 having a plurality of U-shaped channels 12 secured to the upper horizontal surface of the table to insure the proper positioning of glass tubes T for subsequent movement into the preheating zone. As illustrated in FIG. 1A and 3, U-shaped channels 12 extend longitudinally of the loading area. The engaging and lifting mechanism and the positioning mechanisms which are both mounted on the upper frame of the helical grooving machine above table 10, will be described in detail below.

The movable carriage assembly extends approximately the length of three sections of the machine. The carriage is divided into three parts. The first part transfers tubes from the loading to the preheating area, the second transfers tubes from the preheating to the grooving area, and the third transfers Tube forming manufactuere from the grooving to the unloading area. The third part of the carriage also carries the necessary equipment to perform the grooving operation. The three parts or sections of the carriage assembly move and operate in common to provide continuous processing of the lamps. In essence, sets of lamps are transferred sequentially from one area of the machine to the next.

In the preheating area of the machine, gas burner preheaters are supported on the framework and extend longitudinally thereof below the plane of carriage travel. Open top casings 188 enclose the preheaters, which are not shown. There is one preheater, or a group of preheaters, for each glass tube of a set to be processed. In the case illustrated, there are four tubes processed simultaneously, so there are four, or four sets, of preheaters. Supported at the top of each casing 188 are pairs of rotatable rollers (not shown) spaced to support each of the glass tubes T and provide an elongated channel through which heat can be transferred to the lower exposed surface of each of the glass tubes T. This is also described in detail in the aforementioned patent.

Hoods 198 extend along the top of the casings 188, and are supported on the carriage assembly by tubular members 197. By reason of their support from the carriage assembly, hoods 198 travel with the carriage assembly longitudinally of the tube T and casings 188. The preheaters operate as the carriage is moving from right to left during the time that the grooving operation is being performed. The tubes are preheated to a point where they still maintain rigidity in the longitudinal direction, so that they can be transferred without any sag of the glass.Referring to FIG. 1B, heating assemblies 288 corresponding to those in the preheating section, are supported by the machine framework. Here again, there is one heater for each spiral former to be processed. Hoods 298 operate in association with heaters 288.

A carriage 22, shown in the loading area of FIG. 1A, of the movable carriage assembly, supports the engaging and lifting mechanism of the present invention. The portion of the movable carriage assembly for supporting the torches that form the grooves in the outer walls of the glass tubes T during the spiral or helical grooving operation in the grooving area, is not shown. The carriage carrying the grooving torches does not form part of the present invention. Details with regard to its operation may be found in U.S. Pat. No. 3,399,984 to D. G. Trutner, et al.

The unloading area of the machine is illustrated in FIG. 1B. A conveyor 340 transfers completed tubes received from the grooving area along a path perpendicular to the longitudinal path of travel of the SBKJ Tube former .An air cylinder 350 with pusher head 352 mounted on the end of its piston rod is supported on the machine framework. A bracket (not shown) on the right end of the carriage assembly is positioned to engage pusher head 352. A lead screw 242 operates to return the carriage assembly to the left, to its starting position. This is described in detail below. 
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jiangyin Head Factory
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