US 1808326 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 2, 1931. G, Q THOMAS, JR 1,808,326
OUTLET BOX ATTACHMENT MEANS Original Filed April 4' 1924 8 O Il, 73M. g
f NVENTOR 20 if 5 /IM ,/Zw m ATTORNEY l Patente-d June 2, 1931 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE GEORGE C. THOMAS, JR., OF ELIZABETH, NEW JERSEY, ASSIGNOR TO THE THOMAS &- BETTS CO., OF ELIZABETH, NEW JERSEY, A CORPORATION OF NEW JERSEY OUTLET BOX ATTACHMENT MEANS Original application led April 4, 1924, Serial No. 704,101. VPatent No. 1,683,742, dated September 11, 1928. Divided and this application filed February '7, 1925. Serial No. 7,450. Renewed April 10, 1931.
My invention relates to outlet box constructi0n,-and more particularly relates to adjustable means for supporting the box on a wall or partition, and means for supporting electrical switches, or other devices, in thebox.
This application isa division of my prior application, Serial No. 704,101, filed April 4, 1924, for outlet box construction, Patent 1,683,742 of September 11, 1928, and as aforesaid relates particularly to box attachment and switch supporting devices.
Heretofore in outlet box construction it has been customary to cut the blank from which the box body is formed in such a way that there Vis a lug or tab integral with and extending from the top of each side of the box. These lugs are then-tapped and bent over and the cover plate or switch, or another unit, is held in lplace in the box by being securedy to` theselugs.v This method of forming these lugs on the, box necessitates using for the blank a sheet of Vmetal sufficiently large to allow the lugs to be formed thereon and requires 'the cutting away and discarding of a., substantial quantity of metal. If these lugs are not formed on the blank, the size of the sheet from which the blank is cut may be smaller. The saving which can ber eifected by so reducing the size of the sheet from which the blank is cut so as not to include the switch supporting lugs, and by not cutting away and wasting the metal between the lugs, may seem tritiing, but in the artof outlet box construction this saving assumes major proportions, due to the necessity of reducing the cost of these articles to the minimum to meet the requirements of contractors and dealers, and to meet competition. A saving ofeven a l small fraction of a cent per box will be considered with great seriousness by manufacturers, contractors and dealers, and may be the determining factor as to whether or not the box will be successful commercially. Saving and reduction of cost in other parts of the construction are, of course, equally important,f.so long as efficiency and practicability are not sacrificed.
Accordingly-the principal object of the invention is to' provide box attachment and switch supporting devices which may be assembled on the box or removed therefrom readily, easily and quickly, and, if desired, may be retained on an unmounted box permanently ready for use, thus preventing these elements from becoming mislaid and lost, and eliminating the necessity of handling them as separate detached pieces when the box is to be installed or, if a gang box, when it is extended or reduced in size. A further object of my invention is to make the various parts small and simple and so shaped as to conserve material.
Other objects of my invention will be in part obvious and, in part pointed out hereinafter.
In accordance with my invention, I provide a construction wherein a single screw serves to detachably retain a separate switch supporting element and a separate box supporting element on a box wall, these elements being attachable to and removable from the wall without requiring the screw to be removed from these elements, and permitting removal, adjustment and reversal of the box supporting element without removing the screw `from the wall, thus facilitating assembly and adjustment of the parts, reducing the number which must be handled separately, and conserving time and labor. The switch and box supporting elements are on opposite sides of the box wall, which is notched for the screw, and the screw penetrates one element and is threaded into the other in such a way that the two elements maybe clamped firmly in position against the box wall. Preferably, the box supporting element is notched for the screw to permit reversal without requiring the screw or the switch supporting element to be removed from the box wall.
In order that a clearer understanding of my invention may be had, attention is hereby directed to the accompanying drawings,
forming a part of this application and showing one possible embodiment of my inven tion.
Referring to the drawings:
Fig. 1 is a top view of an outlet box construction, including switch and box supporting devices, embodying my invention; Fig. 2 is a side view `of the same; Fig. 3 is a sectional view, andistaken on the line 3-3 of Fig. 2; Fig. 4 is a sectional view of a portion of the construction, and is taken on the line 4 4 of Fig. 2; Fig. 5 is a side view of" the same portion of the construction showing'the box supporting element mounted in a different position of adjustment; and Fig. 6 is a view similar to Fig. 5, but shows thebox supporting element in a third position of adjustment. Similar reference charactersrefer to similar parts'throughout the several views of the drawings. Y Referringt'o the drawings, the outlet box comprises a bottom 1, side walls 2 and 3,
and end walls 4 and 5.' For Yassociation with v the Ybox- I provide attachment elements 6 *Y a -flange 11 seating against the inside of the box wall 2 or 3, and have an attachment flange12 provided with a threaded screw hole 13. At the lower end of flange 11 is a circular boss 14 provided with a threaded hole 15 for a screw 16. Each side wall 2 and 3 has an aperture 17 and a slot 18 narrower than the aperture 17 extending therefrom to the top edge of the wall. The boss 14 of the switch supporting element is wider Vthan the slot 18, butissmall enough to seat in theaperture 17. The head of the screw 16 is wider than the aperture 17, but its shank may pass through the slot 18. Ac-V cordingly, when the screw is tightened, the boss 14 is drawn into the aperture to prevent removalof thev switch supporting element from the body section wall, and when the screw is loosened the switch supporting ele-V ment may be mounted on or removed from the .wall without removing the screw from the element.
The flange 8 of each box supporting elementl 6 has a notch 19 open adjacent the attachment flange 10, and adapted to receive theV shank ofthe screwr16. By adjusting the notch 19 vwith respect to the screw 16 apd then tightening this screw, the box supporting element may be secured to the body section wall in various positions. (See Figs. 5 and' 6L) Alongside of the notch 19,
the'flange 8 has a-key hole slot comprising bracket V7.
an aperture 20, larger than the head of the screw 16, and a communicating slot 21 narrower than the head of the screw, the key hole slot being so disposed that the box supporting element 6 may be secured to the box in inverted position (as shown in Figs. 2 and 3) by engaging the keyhole slot of the flange 8 with the screw 16;y By the slot and aperture arrangement in applicants supporting bracket the outlet box is adapted to be removably positioned and secured to walls of various characters. When the outlet box is to be positioned on walls to be plastered, for' instance, the bracket is hung in the Vposition shown in Figs. 2 and 8, the flange portion 10 being secured Vto thelath, and the plaster disposed betweenV flange v10 of the bracket and flange l12 of the switch supporting element. AgainY it Y may be desirable in non-plastered wallsto have the securing flange 10 ofthe box supporting elementV positioned` flush with the outside of the box as shown in Fig. 5.,l If
a thin wall covering material, such as bea-V ver board, is used, the bracket 'maybe ad` justed to suit the various thicknesses of cov eringmaterial inserted between flanges 10 and 12, as shown in Fig. 6. Two slots are.
used to provide for adjustabilityy ofV thek bracket to accommodate all thicknessesv of wall covering. It is evident' that if only oney slot were used no adjustability would be provided for between the minimum upright position and the maximum inverted position of the flange 10. Furthermore, if onlyone slot iwere used positioned in the middle of thebracket 8, the projecting head ofscrew 16 would interefere with the insertion of the screw through hole 13, `of Therefore, two slots arenecessary. It is further evident, byreferring to Fig. 2, that the box-supporting bracket 6 cannot be removed by forcing the bracket upwardly, since the overhanging flange 12 abutting against plate 8 prevents upward movement of the support. Therefore, applicant has provided the enlarged Y'aperture 20 to permit removal ofthe bracket by downward' movement thereof. It will be apparent that the element 6 may readily and easily be adjusted and reversed ona box wall without requiring the screw. 16 tov be removedfrom the element 7 or' from the wall.
It will 'be' readilyV apparent that the disvioo los
closed construction has all the 'advanta- Y geous features and characteristics mentioned heretofore, and that all the objects of my invention are attained thereby. i
As many changesl couldbe made in the above construction, and as many different embodiments of this invention :could be made without departing from 'the scope thereof, it is intended that alljmatter con; tained in the above description or shofwnin lac the accompanying drawings be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
What I claim is 1. In outlet box construction, in combination, a box including a wall having an aperture and a slot narrower than said aperture and extending therefrom to an edge of said wall, a switch supporting element having a boss wider than said slot and engageable in said aperture, and a screw passing through said wall and engaging said boss, the head of said screw being wider than said aperture and the shank of said screw being narrower than said slot, whereby when said screw is tightened said boss is drawn into said aperture to prevent removal of said element from said box wall, and when said screw is loosened said element may be removed from and may be mounted on said box wall without removing said screw from said boss.
2. In outlet box construction, in combination, a box having a wall, a box supporting element having a flange seatable against said box wall, and a headed screw detachably and adjustably retained on said wall for detachably securing said element to said wall for adjustment and reversal with respect thereto, the said flange having a notch open at one end and narrower than the head and wider than the shank of the screw, and having also a key-hole slot comprising an aperture larger than the head of the screw and a communicating slot narrower than the head of the screw, whereby the flange may be placed in engagement with the screw alternatively at the notch and at the key-hole slot.
3. In outlet box construction, in combination, a box having a wall, a box supporting element having a flange seatable against said box wall, and a headed screw detachably and adjustably retained on said wall for detachably securing said element to said wall i for adjustment and reversal with respect thereto, the said flange having a notch open at one end and narrower than the head and wider than the shank of the screw, and having also a key-hole slot comprising an aperture largerthan the head of the screw and a communicating slot narrower than the head of the screw, whereby the flange may be placed in engagement with the screw alternatively at the notch and at the key-hole slot, there being on said wall two guide bosses for said flange.
4. In outlet box construction, the combination with a box wall having an aperture therein, a switch supporting element having a flange disposed against the inside of said box wall, a box supporting element having a flange seatable against the outside of said box wall, said fiange having a slot and a screw having a head wider than the slot extending through said fiange and said box supporting element to retain said box supporting element and said switch supporting element in position on said box wall, said screw having a head wider than said slot.
This specification signed this 3rd day of February, 1925.
GEORGE C. THOMAS, JR.