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Publication numberUS20030086754 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/283,067
Publication dateMay 8, 2003
Filing dateOct 30, 2002
Priority dateOct 30, 2001
Publication number10283067, 283067, US 2003/0086754 A1, US 2003/086754 A1, US 20030086754 A1, US 20030086754A1, US 2003086754 A1, US 2003086754A1, US-A1-20030086754, US-A1-2003086754, US2003/0086754A1, US2003/086754A1, US20030086754 A1, US20030086754A1, US2003086754 A1, US2003086754A1
InventorsRamon de la Fuente
Original AssigneeDe La Fuente Ramon
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Connecting node
US 20030086754 A1
Abstract
A connecting node, manufactured on a specific plastic material is described. Said connecting node comprises a cylindrical main body lodging inside two hollow cavities with convex semicircular flanges able to provide a tight-fit between the node and the element to be connected; and wherein said connecting node further comprises three connection arrangements disposed on its right-hand side, frontal and left-hand side walls. With said arrangements a rapid and safe union between two or three connecting nodes is attained. In addition, said arrangements permit the incorporation of elements working under stress into said connecting node. Said elements connected between nodes intend to provide higher rigidity between the elements forming the structure when assembled by said connecting nodes.
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Claims(9)
1. A connecting node that permits a rapid and simple union of different structural elements integrating a structure, and that permits the union between two or three similar connecting nodes, comprising:
a cylindrical main body that lodges inside an upper cavity and a lower cavity, which are separated by a middle wall forming part of said cylindrical principal body, wherein said cavities are extended from each end edge of the cylindrical main body to the opposite end, and inside each of said cavities three inner semicircular convex tight-fit flanges are provided in order to firmly hold the structural element of the structure to be assembled inserted in them;
a first and second connection arrangements between said connecting nodes, wherein the first connection arrangement is aligned to the transverse axis of the cylindrical main body on its outer left-hand side wall, and the second connection arrangement is aligned to the longitudinal axis of the cylindrical main body on its outer front wall; the first connection arrangement comprising an upper or male union element and a lower or female union element, and the second connection arrangement comprising an upper or female union element and a lower or male union element presenting the same features of the union elements of the first connection arrangement, but in reverse order, such that with that order and in combination with the first and second connection arrangements of other connecting nodes a male-female and female-male fitting can be made between connecting nodes; and
a third connection arrangement for structural elements working under stress, which is aligned to the transverse axis of the cylindrical main body on its outer right-hand side wall, and which comprises an upper hollow cylinder and a lower hollow cylinder extended from each end of the cylindrical main body of the connecting node up to a little more of the fourth part of the total length of said body.
2. A connecting node according to claim 1, further characterized in that the semicircular convex tight-fit flanges, disposed in each of the cylindrical main body cavities and forming an integral part of the same, are angled 120 apart about their centers, taking as a reference the longitudinal central axis of the cylindrical main body.
3. A connecting node according to claim 1, further characterized in that the upper and lower union elements integrating the first and second connection arrangements between connecting nodes, are extended from each end of the cylindrical main body up to about half the total length of the connecting node, thus achieving a separation between said elements in the central part of the connecting node.
4. A connecting node according to claim 1, further characterized in that the upper union element of the first connection arrangement, which presents the same features than the lower union element of the second connection arrangement, is configured from a solid cylindrical body tangentially joined to the outer left-hand side and frontal wall of the cylindrical main body, depending on the arrangement in question, such that said union is resistant enough to support the efforts to which the upper union element will be subjected between connecting nodes.
5. A connecting node according to claim 1, further characterized in that the lower union element of the first connection arrangement, which presents the same features than the upper union element of the second connection arrangement, is configured from two circular walls that start from the cylindrical main body, of which the arc length is defined by about one third of the diameter of a hollow cylinder able to lodge inside a solid cylindrical body, with the same diameter as the male element's, wherein the circular walls show along their extent three specific terminations of the same length on their terminal face such that the first and the last of these terminations are equal, and wherein the termination of the terminal wall on its middle section is formed from a recess comprised between the upper and lower sections, such that the union between the outer and inner faces of said walls in this section becomes defined by a straight wall presenting a slope converging into the center of said lower element.
6. A connecting node according to claim 5, further characterized in that the first and last of the specific terminations of the terminal face of each circular walls integrating the lower union element of the first connection arrangement, which presents the same features than the upper union element of the second connection arrangement, are formed in the point where the outer face of said walls joins the terminal face, which presents a concave configuration, by a circular flange with a predetermined radius, and wherein said terminal face joins a first inner face of the walls, the first inner face extending up to find the point where said inner wall intercepts the circumference defined by a second inner wall of each of said walls, which starts from the cylindrical main body of the connecting node.
7. A connecting node according to claim 5, further characterized in that the inner walls of the lower union element of the first connection arrangement, which presents the same features than the upper union element of the second connection arrangement, show a second special configuration from about half the arc length of said walls to the cylindrical main body, such that converging straight faces are obtained, disposed in an angle about 62 between each other with respect to the longitudinal central axis of said union element, achieving with this configuration that the inner walls can firmly hold the structural element lodged inside them.
8. A connecting node according to claim 1, further characterized in that the connecting node dimensions, as well as the dimensions of each element integrating it, can vary according to the specific needs of the elements which integrate the structure to be assembled and of the structural elements which work under stress, in order to make the connecting nodes sufficiently resistant to support the traction, torsion and flexion efforts to which they will be subjected.
9. A connecting node according to claim 1, further characterized in that the hollow cylinders of the third connection arrangement for structural elements working under stress have each, on its adjacent end with the middle part of the connecting node, an U-shaped groove on its front face, extending approximately one third of the total length of said cylinders, such that these grooves facilitate the insertion of the previously configured ends of the elements working under stress in the cylinders.
Description
    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0001]
    Within the field of the connectors or nodes for structures requiring fast and efficient assembly, there are several types of connectors manufactured from different materials, such as plastic and aluminum, among others, with the purpose of meeting assembly needs of the different elements comprising a structure, and can include from simple drill holes arranged on the connector's main body which allow bolts insertion, to fastening complex systems with screws and clamps, whereby the complexity involving the connector itself, on occasions exceed the complete structure.
  • [0002]
    Normally connectors are utilized as a starting point of two or more elements of a given structure, nevertheless this perception limits connector to be part of one single structure, which does not mean it can interact with other connectors with the same characteristics being part of independent similar structures, such that a joint can be achieved of one or more independent structures by connectors or nodes.
  • [0003]
    As an example of the above there is a swift structure assembly joining system under Mexican patent number 188650, consisting of connectors or nodes and lineal segments as well as a billeted bushing making a butt joint on an inside end of the segment; a screw with stem and threaded end, that is partially inside the same lineal segment end, part of the stem and its thread projecting from the segment end; a nut positioned on the stem part of the screw, having same irregular design stem and thread perforation; a pawl placed on the screw thread; perforation on the node face thread and free screw rotation allowing a stable joint of such pieces, either manually or with a tool.
  • [0004]
    Another example of connectors being used to form different elements integrating a structure, that are known and currently utilized, are described in Mexican patent number 175756, referring to system improvements for structure assembly, of the type comprising fixed angle structural elements joining, in two or three dimensions, wherein to assemble such structural elements it is necessary to weld them or to use screws and nuts; such improvements are characterized by a plurality of cross shaped connectors or nodes, wherein each connector comprises four adequate thick arms with drill holes running through crosswise, one in each arm, through which assembly takes place with lengthwise elements, as well as a perforation in the middle of the connector employed to join connectors or nodes to each other; a plurality of longitudinal elements of the running board type each comprising a variable dimensions elongated member and a pair of outriggers, one for each running board end, through which a longitudinal element assembly with connector or node is performed; and a plurality of bolts and small tube spans, allowing two or three dimensions structure assembly.
  • [0005]
    According to information provided by state of the art reference to connecting nodes currently utilized to assemble elements integrating a structure, it will be appreciated that these show a complex configuration which furthermore requires additional outside elements to function. Furthermore, such connectors can only be assembled among each other as part of the structure configuration, discarding the possibility of joining each other with the object of allowing interaction among two or more similar characteristics structures, which limits connectors utilization in a single structure.
  • [0006]
    According to the above, the present invention object of the connecting node is to overcome currently known connectors deficiencies and limitations, starting from a simple structure and without additional outside elements, such as bolts, screws or clamps, to allow connection of elements integrating one single structure, as well as interconnecting two or more similar characteristics structures, thereby accomplishing self incorporation of functions from both connector as well as nodes.
  • OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION
  • [0007]
    It is the object of the present invention to provide a connecting node from a simple structure and without involving outside elements which allows a rigid and safe connection among each of the elements integrating one structure.
  • [0008]
    It is another object of the present invention to provide a connecting node that allows joining of connecting nodes among each other, in a fast and safe manner.
  • [0009]
    It is another object of the present invention to provide a connecting node that allows anchoring of structural elements working under tension, such that with said elements the necessary structural tightness can be given to achieve optimum structural operation, once assembled.
  • [0010]
    It is another object of the present invention to provide a connecting node manufactured preferably from a plastic material that will support traction, torsion and deflection exertions.
  • [0011]
    These and other objects of the invention will be evident from the following drawings and description of the preferred embodiment.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0012]
    [0012]FIG. 1 is a perspective view from the front part of the connecting node of the present invention.
  • [0013]
    [0013]FIG. 2 is a perspective view from the rear part of the connecting node of the present invention.
  • [0014]
    [0014]FIG. 3 is an elevational right side view of the connecting node of FIG. 1.
  • [0015]
    [0015]FIG. 4 is an elevational left side view of the connecting node of FIG. 1.
  • [0016]
    [0016]FIG. 5 is an top plan view of the connecting node of FIG. 1.
  • [0017]
    [0017]FIG. 6 is a longitudinal cut of the connecting node of FIG. 1.
  • [0018]
    [0018]FIG. 7 is a perspective view of the two connecting nodes as shown on FIG. 1, joined to each other; and
  • [0019]
    [0019]FIG. 8 is an elevational front view of four connecting nodes as shown on FIG. 1, joined by turnbuckle structural elements working at a tension.
  • PREFERRED EMBODIMENT DESCRIPTION
  • [0020]
    Referring to FIGS. 1 to 8, the connecting node 1 is illustrated which is formed from a cylindrical main body 10, which houses inside an upper recess 11 and a lower recess 12, separated by an intermediate wall 13, forming part of the same cylindrical main body 10. In such upper 11 and lower 12 recesses end edges extend from the cylindrical main body 10 ends towards the opposite end, being limited by intermediate wall 13, such that said upper 11 and lower 12 recesses present a depth of approximately half the total length of the main body 10 of connecting node 1, leaving such depth limited only by intermediate wall 13.
  • [0021]
    The diameter of the upper 11 and lower 12 recesses is determined such that wall thickness forming between these two recesses 11, 12 and cylindrical main body 10 is sufficiently resistant to uphold exertions to which the connecting node 1 is submitted, once structural elements 70, 71 integrating erecting structure are billeted inside such upper 11 and lower 12 recesses, as illustrated in FIG. 8.
  • [0022]
    Furthermore, connecting node 1 upper 11 and lower 11 recesses, each display, arranged inside and as integral part of same, three tightening convex semicircular edges 14, 15, 16 acting as wedges to allow a strong hold of structural elements 70, 71 billeted inside, and which integrate the erecting structure. The three convex semicircular edges 14, 15, 16 are distanced from each other 1200 inside upper and lower recesses, such that the first convex semicircular edge 14 is positioned along the longitudinal central shaft of the connecting node 1 cylindrical main body, the second convex semicircular edge 15 is positioned to the right of the first convex semicircular edge 14 and the third convex semicircular edge 16 to the left of the first convex semicircular edge 14. Achieving with such configuration of the convex semicircular edges 14, 15, 16 a tightening between the inserting structural elements 70, 71 in each of the connecting node 1 upper 11 and lower 12 recesses, thereby avoiding any possible looseness between these structural elements.
  • [0023]
    As can be appreciated on FIGS. 1, 2 and 5, connecting node 1 furthermore presents and as an integral part of it, aligned with respect to the cylindrical main body 10 cross shaft 18 and on external left side wall, a first configuration of connecting elements between nodes 20, consisting of an upper element 21 and a lower element 22, which according to their individual operating performance can be named as male and female respectively. Upper element 21 or male extends from upper end of cylindrical main body 10 to approximately half its total length, and lower element 22 extends from the opposite end where upper element 21 or male comes from up to approximately half the total length of cylindrical main body 10, thereby achieving that the joining of upper 21 and lower 22 elements between connecting nodes 1, be slightly separated one with respect to the other in the central portion of connecting node 1.
  • [0024]
    Upper element 21 or male of the first connecting elements 20 arrangement between connecting nodes 1, derives from a solid cylindrical body 23 tangentially joined to external left side wall of cylindrical main body 10, such that joint between solid cylindrical body 23 and cylindrical main body 10 is sufficiently strong to uphold exertions to which upper joining element 21 is subjected when connecting nodes 1 joining takes place.
  • [0025]
    On the other hand lower element 22 or female is arranged from two circular walls 24, 25 starting from cylindrical main body 10, which arch length is defined by approximately a third part of a hollow cylinder diameter capable of housing a solid cylindrical body which diameter is equal to the upper element 21 or male, such that distance between such walls 24, 25 is defined by the upper element 21 dimensions. As illustrated on FIG. 4, such walls 24, 25 display along their extension three specific terminations 26, 27, 28 having the same length on their terminal face 29.
  • [0026]
    The first termination 26 and the last termination 28 of terminal face 29 of each of walls 24, 25 are the same and are made when the external face of such walls is joined to their respective terminal face 29, presenting a concave configuration, by a circular edge 30 bell shaped with a determined radio determined by connecting node 1 dimensions, to finally join terminal face 29 to walls 24, 25 with a first internal face 31 therefrom, where this first internal face 31 extends from the free end of concave terminal face 29 until a point is found where such internal face 31 placed parallel to the cylindrical main body 10 cross shaft 18, intercepting defined circumference by a second internal face 32 from each of such walls 24, 25.
  • [0027]
    Termination of terminal wall 29 in its intermediate section 27 is formed from a depression comprised between upper 26 and lower 28 sections, such that joint between external and internal faces of such walls 24, 25 in this section 27 is defined by a straight wall presenting a slope converging towards the center of such lower element 22, accomplishing with this that it would be possible to use such intermediate section 27, once two connecting nodes 1 are coupled, to uncouple them by applying levering force with a wedge shaped tool on this intermediate section 27 wall.
  • [0028]
    Likewise circular walls 24, 25 forming lower element 22 or female, present such separation that insertion and securing of similar characteristics element to upper element 21 or male or between them, and a determined thickness with the object of firmly grasping the element housed inside and to endure exertions to which the connecting node 1 is subjected when working in combination with other connecting nodes 1. To achieve the above, such walls 24, 25 also present on their internal face 32 a second special configuration, such that while their external face is distinctly circular, their internal face from approximately half the length of the arch of such walls and towards the main cylindrical body, they show convergent straight faces 33, arranged at an angle of approximately 62 with respect to cross shaft 18 of such lower joint element 22.
  • [0029]
    According to the above, this first arrangement of joining elements 20, because of their configuration and location of elements, allow joining of connecting node 1 with a second connecting node 1 with the same characteristics, by a male-female socket system, wherein, as previously referred, it is necessary that the second connecting node 1 which is to be joined to the first connecting node, shows the same joining system as the first one, such that the joining elements arrangement be such that it allows joining between males-females and females-males. In this manner, when two connecting nodes 1 are joined there are major advantages over those available when each work independently.
  • [0030]
    Connecting node 1 also shows as an integral part thereof, parallel to the cylindrical main body longitudinal shaft and on its external front wall, a second arrangement of connecting elements between nodes 40, maintaining an angular relationship of 90 as far as its location on the connecting node 1 cylindrical main body 10 periphery with respect to the first connection arrangement 20.
  • [0031]
    This second connecting element 40 arrangement consist of an upper element 41 and a lower element 42 that show the same characteristics as the first connection arrangement 20, except that they are inverted, that is while on the first connection arrangement 20 upper element 21 is the male, now on the second connection arrangement 40 the upper element 41 is the female, and while on the first connection arrangement 20 the lower element 22 was the female, now on the second connection arrangement 40 the lower element 42 is the male. This configuration is conceived with the object that one or two connecting nodes 1 of similar characteristics can be connected with a main connecting node 1, that is, while the second connecting elements arrangement 40 of a second connecting node 1 is a male-female socket with joining element of the first connection arrangement 20 of a first connecting node 1, joining elements of the first connection arrangement 20 of a third connecting node 1 is male-female socket with joining elements of the second connection arrangement 40 of the first connecting node 1.
  • [0032]
    It is necessary to have in mind that the joint between connecting nodes 1 depend directly on the requirements resulting with respect to structures connected by connecting nodes 1, since each of these nodes 1 allows structure arrangements independently, and only when it is required that two or more of these structures be joined, the interconnecting characteristics between connecting nodes 1 can be used.
  • [0033]
    Finally, connecting node 1 shows as an integral part thereof, aligned with respect to the cylindrical main body cross shaft 18 and on its external right side wall, a third connection arrangement 60, such that said connection arrangement 60 is kept on the same level as the first connection arrangement 20 and maintains an angular relationship of 90 with respect to the second connection arrangement 40. Wherein this third connection arrangement 60 allows anchorage of structural elements to work under tension 72, 73, such that said structure elements 72, 73 can provide the necessary structural stiffness for optimum structure operation once it has been erected.
  • [0034]
    The connecting node 1 third connection arrangement 60 comprises an upper hollow cylinder 61 and a lower hollow cylinder 62, where such hollow cylinders 61, 62 extend from the connecting node 1 cylindrical main body 10 respective upper and lower ends and up to slightly over the fourth part of such cylindrical main body 10 total length, defining the separation between these two upper 61 and lower 62 hollow cylinders in the middle part of connecting node 1 by the structural elements dimensions working under tension 72, 73 and which are inserted in hollow cylinders 61, 62, such that said insertion is performed without any problems and allows independent handling of each of the structural element working under tension 72, 73, without any of them blocking each other path by placing them on its corresponding hollow cylinder 61, 62, or away from it.
  • [0035]
    Upper 61 and lower 62 hollow cylinders of the third connection arrangement 60 are found joined to connecting node 1 cylindrical main body 10 in approximately a fourth part of the total diameter length of such hollow cylinders 61, 62, such that said elements achieve endurance of tension and flexion forces to which they are subjected once tension working structural elements 72, 73 are inserted into them; furthermore, recess diameter and wall thickness forming on each of these upper 61 and lower 62 hollow cylinders have been determined by the tension working structural elements 72, 73 dimensions, and that are inserted into them, thereby achieving a wall enduring exertions to which such elements are subjected.
  • [0036]
    Additionally such hollow cylinders 61, 62 each show, on its adjacent end with the middle portion of connecting node 1, a “U” shaped groove 63 on their front face, which extends to approximately a third of the total length of such upper 61 and lower 62 hollow cylinders, such that said grooves 63 facilitate insertion in hollow cylinders 61, 62 of tension working structural elements 72, 73 previously arranged ends.
  • [0037]
    It is important to highlight that connecting node 1 is manufactured in a specific characteristics plastic material that allows simplification of the connecting node production process, since it is easily injected into the mold that comprises the connecting node die, and provides connecting node 1 with physical properties as well, which could not otherwise be obtained from any other plastic material, e.g., that connecting node 1 offers greater resistance to combined exertions to which it is subjected by different integrating elements.
Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2435171 *Jun 19, 1946Jan 27, 1948Universal Fittings & ScaffoldiScaffold
US3204606 *Nov 8, 1963Sep 7, 1965Parr BruceArticulated livestock panels
US3767167 *Sep 15, 1972Oct 23, 1973Rasmussen HPortable fence panel
US5331725 *Jul 30, 1992Jul 26, 1994Design Ideas, Ltd.Rod clip
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7698408 *Jul 24, 2006Apr 13, 2010Oracle America, Inc.Method and apparatus for testing a network
Classifications
U.S. Classification403/170
International ClassificationF16B7/04
Cooperative ClassificationF16B7/04, Y10T403/341
European ClassificationF16B7/04
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Jan 15, 2003ASAssignment
Owner name: SABRITAS, S. DE R.L. DE C.V., MEXICO
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:DE LA FUENTE, RAMON;REEL/FRAME:013666/0490
Effective date: 20021226