US 1560278 A
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Nov. 3, 1925- W. J. MAHA'N PORTABLE APPARATUS FOR IDENTIFYING ELECTRIC CONDUCTORS Filnd Jan. 23. 1.924
3 SheetS-Shiit l Nov. 3,1 5. 1,560,278
-w. J. MAHAN PORTABLE APPARATUS FOR IDENTIFYING ELECTRIC CONDUCTORS Filed Jan. 23. 1924 3 Sheets-Shed, 2
Nov. 3,1925. 1,560,278
W. J. MAHAN PORTABLE APPARATUS FOR IDENTIFYING ELECTRIC CONDUCTORS Filnd Jan. 25, 1924 3vSheet8-Sh0 ii 5 v drawings constitute Patented Nov. 3, 1925.
UNITED STATES 1,560,278 PATENT OFFICE.
WILLIAM J". MAHAN, OF NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT.
PORTABLE APPARATUS FOR IDENTIFYING ELECTRIC CONDUCTORS.
. Application filed January 23, 1924.; Serial No. 688,045.
To all whom it may concern:
Be it known that I, WILLIAM J. MAHAN, a citizen of the United States, residing at New Haven, in the county of New Haven and State of Connecticut, have invented a new and usefulImprovement in Portable Apparatus for Identifying Electric Conductors; and I do hereby declare the following, when taken in connection with the accompanying drawings and the characters of reference marked thereon, to be a full, clear, and exact description of the same, and which said part of this application, and represent in- Fig. l a schematic view,'showing an electric lighting circuit with thetwo units of my improved apparatus in position for application. thereto.
Fig. 2 a view in central, longitudinal section of the unit A. of my apparatus.
Fig. 3 a corresponding view of the unit B 7 thereof.
Fig. 4 a plan view of an adapter for cartrige-fuse sockets. I
Fig. 5 a perspective view of an adapter for bus-bar connections. Fig. 6 a plan view of a flexible connector provided with spring-clips.
Fig. 7 a diagrammatic view of a circuit.
showing my two units A and B coupled thereinto, with the wiring correctly connected to the outlet.
Fig. 8 a similar View, with the exception that the wiring is incorrectly connected.
Fig. 9 a diagrammatic view of the circuit in Ithe unit B when being used as a flashig t.
My invention relates to an improved portable apparatus for identifying electric conductors wherever that may be desired, and for whatever purpose, the object being to produce a simple, convenient and reliable device for the purpose indicated.
Vith these ends in view, In invention consists in a portable apparatus or identifying electrical conductors characterized by two independently organized but co-operative units, each having a source of electrical energy and two terminals adapted to be .connected into a circuit and some approved form of electrically-operated signal brought into playby the co-action in series ofthe energies of the two units.
My invention further consists in an apparatus of the character above described, in
which one of the units is organized to operate as aflashlight. 1 v
. My invention further consists in an apparatus having certain details of construction and combinations of parts as will be hereinafter described and pointed out in the claims.
Forthe convenlence of illustration and description, I have shown my improved apparatus as constructed for identifying the conductors of an electric lighting circuit, though I would have it understood that my invention is not limited to such a construction, since modifications of it will be required to adapt it for usein other situations, such as testing telephone, telegraph and signaling-wires.
In carrying outmy'invention, as herein shown, I employ two independenty-organized but co-operative units, each functioning as a source of electrical energy, and adapted, when inserted into the circuit to be tested, to act in series to operate an electric indicator, whatever its character, which 'shall serve to indicate whether the circuit is coupled up right or wrong. For transportation, these two units are packed and carried together, but when in actual use, one becomes stationary, While the other is moved from point to point for identifying purposes. It'will be convenient, therefore, to
taining two dry-battery cells 12-12. The i outer end of the said casing mounts a cylin: drical plug 13 of insulating material having a molded, helical thread-14c adapting it'to be screwed into a standard screw-shell 15.-
The plug 13 is held in place by an insulating washer 16, located within an annular retaining-flange 17 formed by turning inward, at a fight angle, the outer edge of the casing 10, as clearly shown in Fi 2, and
inched between the said plug an washer by the binding action ofa long shouldered rivet 18, formed at its flanged outer end with a threaded screw-hole '19, the purpose of which will be described later on, the'said furnished with a spring-clip 22-, engaged by the inner end of a'short length of flexible wire 23, the opposite end of which carries an insulating plug 24 having a molded, helical screw-thread 25 and furnished with a centrally-arranged which the wire 23 is attached by a bindingnut 27.
The traveling unit'B has a tubular. casing 28 receiving two drysbattery cells 2929. At its inner or handle end,'the casing 28 is threaded for the reception of a threaded cap 30, mounting a lens 31 closing in the.
reflector 32 of a standard flashlight bulb 33, the threaded stem of which is screwed into the threaded shank of the reflector, the shank of which, inturn, isscrewed'into thelong threaded sleeve 34, of a contact-ring 35 carrying an annular body 36 of insulating material, in which is' embedded a resistance-coil 37, one end of whichis attached to the said ring, while its other end is attached to a contact-band 38, embracing the said body 36 of insulating material. The
' said contact-ring 35 and band 38 are alternately engaged by the inwardly-extending spring-arm 39 of a double-throw slidingswitch 40 mounted in the usual manner in the casing 28. The said switch also carries 45 of the cap 43.
a forwardly-extending spring-arm 41, the outer end of which engages, on occasion, with a metallic washer 42 carried by a threaded cap 43 screwed upon the threadedouter end of the casing 28, the said washer 42 being insulated from the cap 43 by an insulating washer 44 bearing upon the inner face of the inwardly turned, annular flange The said flange 45 is clamped between the washer 44 and the inwardly-turned flange 46' of a sheet-metal contact-sleeve 47, encasing a cylindrical plug 48 of insulating materialsecured to the cap 43 by means'of a long contact-rivet 49, furnished at its outer end with a contactflange 50. The inner end of the rivet 49 passes through the washers-44 and 42 and through the inner end of a spring 51, upon which it is swaged, whereby the parts being described are all drawn together and secured to the cap 43. The said spring 5.1 acts through the outer cell 29 to maintain the inner cell 29 in engagement with the lamp 33, as required.
It may now beassumed that it is. required, for one reason or another, to identify a conductor in its various ramifications in a given lighting circuit. Let it be further. supposed contact-screw 26, to-
that the conductor C is the conductor which,
in its various ramifications, it is desired to distinguish from its fellow conductor D.
In the first place, the plug 14 of the socalled stationary unit A is screwed into the plug-fuse receiving screw-shell '15,, to which the conductor 0 is connected, whereby its contact-rivet 18 is brought into -engagement with the center-contact 20., The insulating plug 25 of the unit A is now 26 into engagement with the center-contact 53 thereof. The two fuse-plug sockets abovedescribed are of standard construction' and mounted in the porcelain block 54.
screwed into the screw-shell 52 of the com- The complementary so-called traveling unit B is now inserted into the outlet tobe tested, so as to bring its rivet 50 into contact with the center-contact thereof, and its contact-sleeve 47' into engagement with the threaded screw-shell thereof, the. switch 39 having been moved into the position in -which iti s shown in F igs.3, 7 and 8. The
conductor C ofian electric lighting circuit of the character-shown should beconnected with the screw-shell of the outlet, to comply with certain safety requirements of the national.electrical code, from whichit follows that the conductor D is connectedwith the center-contact thereof. I
The units A and B having been positioned as described, if the conductor C is connectedwith the screw shell of the outlet as required, rather than with the center-contact thereof, a circuit will be closed through the batteries of the two units, which will operate, in
series, to light the bulb33 through the resistance-coil 37, which prevents the double set of batteries from burning out the bulb. The lighting of the lamp in this manner in.-- dicates to the circuit inspector that the conductors are properly connected, as shown in Fig. 7 .If, on the other hand, the conductors O and D are improperly connected or crossed, as shown in Fig. 8, withthe conductor C leading to the center-contact of the outlet, the dry-battery cells 12 and 29 will buck each other, as the common phrase is, or nullify each-other, so that the lamp will not be lighted, and hence no signal will be given. In other words, the absence of a signal, under the circumstances, indicates that the connections in; the outlet must be transposedzor thatithe circuit is incomplete. In this manner, all of the outlets, in any given electrical circuit, are successively tested, the unit A being left, as heretofore described, in the fuse-block 54, while the unit I B, whichhas been designated as the travelingaunit, is moved on from outlet to outlet, until all the outlets in the particular circuit have been tested; It will be understood that the answer of the test takes place immediately upon the insertion of the traveling unit 13 into the outlet, so that the testing of the outlets may be done rapidly. While the traveling unit B is being moved from outlet to outlet, it may, if desired, be used as a flashlight, for which purpose its switch 39 is moved back into the position in which it is shown in Fig. 9, whereby its battery 29 is coupled into a local circuit through the bulb 33, the resistance-coil 37 being now out out of the circuit to the lamp by moving the switch as described. The adaptation of the traveling unit to be used as a flashlight is a matter of great convenience, as these inspections must often be carried on of necessity,
in the dark.
In case the circuit to be tested is equipped with so-called cartridge fuses, instead of screw-plug fuses, a metallic adapter 57, having the general form and size of a standard cartridge fuse and provided with a.
screw-stud 58, is employed, its said stud being screwed into the hole 19 of the rivet 18 of the unit A, whereby the same is adapted to be applied to standard cartridge-fuse sockets. Under such circumstances, the connector 23 is disengaged from the clip 22 of the unit A and replaced by a connector of the type shown in Fig. 6, comprising, as shown, a member 59 for engagement with the clip 22 and a flexible conductor 60, having branches til-61, carrying clips 6262, one of which will be clipped upon the fuse socket of a conductor corresponding to the conductor D. The other clip adapts such a connector to be used in testing three-wire and bus-bar installation circuits.
In Fig. 5 I have shown a coupling-plate (33 having a screw-stem (3d adapted to be screwed into the hole 19 of the rivet 18, the plate 63 having a slot 65 for co-action with the bus-bar screws of a circuit equipped with bus-bars of standard construction. The modifications of Figs. 5 and 6 show the units A and B are not limited to usein testing circuits having screw-shell plug-sockets.
It is apparent that my improved apparatus might be constructed and connected on the principal of having a signal given, such as by thelighting of a lamp, when the test showed an improper connection of the conductors to the outlets, instead of a proper connection thereof, as'herein illustrated, this being merely a matter of choice, and would be effected by differently connecting the batteries in their cases, as readily understood by any electrician. Furthermore, the
. signal chosen may be a light, a buzzer or a bell, or any electrically-operated signal, whether visible or audible, these being details comprehended by my invention, which is broadly characterized by the use of two indcpendently-organized but complementary units, each having a source of electric energy and each having two terminals adapted to be connected into a circuit and having some approved form of electrically-operated signal brought into play by the co-action 'of the energies of the two units.
1. A portable apparatus for identifying electric conductors, comprising two indc pendcntly-organized, physically seperate complementary units, each having a separate source of electric energy and each having two terminals adapted to be connected into a circuit, and the said apparatus also comprising an electrically-operated signal brought into play only by the co-action in series of the electric energy of the physically separate two units.
2. A portable apparatus for identifying electric conductors, comprising two indc pendently-organized, complementary units, each having a source of electric energy and each having two terminals adapted to be connected into a circuit, and also compris ing an electrically-operated signal brought spectively engage with the center-contact and screw-shell of a standard socket when inserted thereinto.
3. A portable apparatus for identifying electric conductors, comprising two independentlv-organized, complementary units, each having a source of electric energy and each having two terminals adapted to be connected into a circuit, and also comprising an electrically-operated signal brought into play only by the co-action in series of the electric energy of the two units, the terminals of one unit being positioned to respectively engage with the center-contact and screw-shell of a standard socket when inserted thereinto, and the other unit having a terminal, bv means of which it is supported in a fuse-socket and having a flexibly-mounted terminal for engagement with its companion fuse-socket.
4:. A portable apparatus for identifying electric conductors, having two independently-organized, complementary units, each having a source. of electric energy, and each having two terminals adapted to be connected into a circuit, one unit carrying an electric bulb adapted to be lighted by the two units, a resistance interposed between energy of the two units, one of the said units.
being provided with a center-contact terminal for co-action with the center-contact of a standard screw-shell socket, and also rovided with a contact-band concentric 20 with the said terminal for engagement with the interior wall of the screw-shell of the said socket.
7. A portable apparatus for identifying I electric conductors, comprising two independently-organized, complementary units, each having a tubular casing and'a dry-battery cell located therein and each unit having two terminals adapted to be connected into a circuit, one unit having a terminal adapted to support it in a fuse-socket and the other unit having terminals positioned to respectively engage with the center-contact and screw-shell of a standard socket, and also having an electrically-operated signal brought into play by the co-action in series of the cells of the two units.
In testimony whereof, I have signed this specification.
WILLIAM J. MAI-IAN.