Image Number 4 for United States Patent #5292398.
An apparatus joins opposite ends of a tread on a rotary drum in a tire making machine. Besides the rotary drum, the apparatus includes a conveyor having two lateral endless loops and a guide in the form of rollers interposed between the loops. The conveyor is disposed upstream of the rotary drum. Clamping mechanisms are provided to clamp the respective sides of the tread at a rear end thereof to the endless loops of the conveyor, respectively. A tread placed on the endless loops of the conveyor is maintained in relative position by the guide. The actual length of the tread on the conveyor is measured. The front end of the tread is adhered to the rotary drum and the opposite sides of the tread at the rear end thereof are clamped to the conveyor. The conveyor and drum are then driven at appropriate speeds based on the length of the tread to cause the ends thereof to be joined on the drum. Movable grippers can be provided to stretch the rear end of the tread at the sides thereof into abutment with the front end.