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Ribbon core and spindle

Image Number 5 for United States Patent #6109801.

An ribbon spool and associated mounting spindle for a printer incorporates multiple longitudinal ribs on the spindle that fit into multiple longitudinal slots in the spool to acquire rotational lock between the spindle and spool. A latch at the end of selected ribs interacts with a lock ridge within the spool to acquire longitudinal lock between the spindle and spool. Placing the lock ridge near one end effectively prevents the spool from being inserted from the wrong end. The latch includes a spring-loaded detent action to hold the spool in place until an operator exerts sufficient force to overcome the latch for removal and replacement of the spool. The inner cylindrical surface of the spool is also designed to work properly with conventional spring-loaded frictional force spindles. However, the reverse is not true. Due to the sloping alignment edges on the ribs of the instant spindle, conventional spools may be blocked, thus preventing improper insertion of the old spools onto the new spindles.

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