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Flexible loader apparatus for machine tools and method for use thereof

Image Number 7 for United States Patent #4458566.

A flexible loader apparatus as used for supplying a workpiece to or removing a machined workpiece from a machine tool is provided which has a base (6) secured to a headstock (5) of the machine tool, slides (7,8) shiftable in a direction parallel to the axial line (9) of the main spindle of the headstock (5) guided by the guide member (10) of the base (6), a first servo-motor (16) to move the slides (7, 8), an arm (18) supported at its one end on the slides (7, 8) at their one ends so as to be rotatable about a second axial line (17) parallel to the axial line (9) of the main spindle, a second servo-motor (26) to rotate the arm (18), a wrist member (21) supported by the arm (18) at its free end so as to be rotatable about a third axial line (20) parallel to the axial line (9), a hand member (23) supported by the wrist member (21) so as to be rotatable about an axial line (22) orthogonal to the third axial line (20), fingers (25) mounted to the hand member (23) and adapted to be opened and closed by a fluid cylinder (24), and a third and fourth servo-motors (11, 12) mounted to the slides (7, 8) at their other ends and adapted to be operated to rotate the wrist member (21) and the hand member (23), respectively, through a transmitting system contained within the slide (7) and the arm (18), whereby the fingers (25) are adapted to occupy a position near a chuck (3) of the headstock (5) and a position near a conveyor (28) arranged in the proximity of the machine tool for the purpose of carrying workpieces to be machined or machined workpieces.

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