US 2713671 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
July 19, 1955 R. G. HUNT 2,713,671
SEPARABLE ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR Filed Oct. 7, 1952 2 Sheets-Sheet l I HON Cououc-nva MATEWAL 05554 A 6. HUNT IN V EN TOR.
HTTO/P/VEX July 19, 1955 HUNT 2,713,671
SEPARABLE ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR Filed Oct. '7, 1952 2 Sheets$heet 2 Q/SJEAL G, HUNT INVENTOR.
United States Patent 2,713,671 SEPARABLE ELECTRICAL Russell G. Hunt, South Bend, Ind. Application October 7, 1952, Serial No. 313,494 2 Claims. (Cl. 339-157) This invention relates to improvements in separable electrical connectors, and more particularly is intended to provide a plurality of electrical outlets along the length of an elongated member to facilitate the location of the individual outlets as desired in any arrangements which are required for particular uses. One use for which the invention is particularly well suited is for connecting lights for decorating and illuminating trees, such as both indoor and outdoor Christmas trees.
The primary object of the invention is to provide a separable electrical connector in which one member has an elongated body through which two spaced electrical conductors extend, said body having apertures spaced along its length communicating with the said conductors to receive a stud of a second electrical connector part, which stud has two longitudinally spaced conductor members adapted for frictional engagement with the electrical conductors of the first connector part to effect detachably an electrical connection between the parts.
A further object is to provide a device of this character wherein an elongated member of insulating material imbeds spaced longitudinal conductors at each of which is electrically connected a transversely extending split tube arranged concentrically in. a transverse pas.- sage, there being one tube associated with each of the two wires at each such cross passage and the tubes being of different diameters, with that closest to the mouth of the cross passage being of largest cross-sectional size.
Another object is to provide a device of this character which is simple in construction, inexpensive, easy to install, in which all electrically conductive parts are concealed and so located as to render accidental access thereto unlikely, and wherein a novel frictional relation of the parts is effected, and wherein no particular angular or rotative relation and orientation of the parts of the separable connector is required in order to interconnect the same.
Other objects will be apparent from the following description.
In the drawing:
Fig. 1 is a perspective view of broken away.
Fig. 2 is a perspective view of one part of the connector.
Fig. 3 is an enlarged transverse sectional view of the socket part of the connector.
Fig. 4 is a sectional view illustrating a modified embodiment of the invention taken on line 4-4 of Fig. 5.
Fig. 5 is a transverse sectional view taken on line 5-5 of Fig. 4.
Referring to the drawing and particularly to Figs. 1 to 3 which illustrate one embodiment of the invention, the numeral designates an elongated strip or body member which is formed of insulating material, such as rubber, synthetic rubber, thermosetting resin material, or the like. The member is preferably flexible although it may be rigid. The member may be of any length desired within a range, for instance, of a member which the device with parts 2,713,671 Patented July 19, 1955 is of a length of one inch or less, to one which is of a' length of several feet or even more. In the preferred form the member will preferably be provided with an opening 12 therethrough adjacent one end thereof, as for receiving a member, such as a clip (not shown) or a strand (not shown), by means of which it may be connected to a support.
The member 10 has two electrical conductors or wires 14 extending therethrough lengthwise in substantially parallel spaced relation, said conductors 14 being spaced from each other and from the outer surfaces of the body 10. An elongated flexible cord 16 projects from the body at one end thereof, preferably the end opposite the opening 12, and this cord has conductors 18 which are electrically connected with the conductors 14 imbedded in the body 10. The flexible cord will be of any construction found suitable and preferably will have a rubber sheath and will be so constructed that the conductors 18 therein are electrically insulated from one another. At the end of the cord 16 is mounted separable electrical connector plug 20, preferably of the conventional type having two prongs 22 which are connected with the conductors 18. If desired, a second cord 24 may project from the body 10 at the end thereof adjacent the opening 12 and, where provided, will have a socket member 26 adapted to mate with the member 20, that is, a female socket member. The second cord 24 is optional and, where it is not employed, the conductors 14 in the body will preferably terminate within the body adjacent the aperture 12. Where the cord 24 is provided, it will, of course, be electrically connected with the conductors 14.
Each of the conductors 14 has a plurality of split tubes secured thereto at longitudinally spaced points thereof. The tubes preferably are of two sizes, the tubes 28 be ing of smaller size than the tube 31 as here illustrated. The split tubes 28, 30 are preferably arranged alternately along each conductor as shown in Fig. 1, although this alternate arrangement is not essential. Each of the tubes 28, 30 forms a part of the wall of a transverse passage in the body 10. Thus, as best seen in Fig. 3, this passage may have a mouth portion 32 opening at one edge of the body 1i) and the tube 30 will preferably be spaced inwardly from that mouth portion. The axis of the passage and the tube will be perpendicular to the conductors 14 and substantially parallel to the two broad or side surfaces 34 of the body 10. The intermediate portion 36 of the passage located between the. split tubes 28 and 30 will preferably include a tapered or frusto conical portion which constitutes a shoulder intermediate the length of the passage. This shoulder need not be frusto conical but may be abrupt and substantially perpendicular to the axis of the passage, if desired. The passage will preferably terminate at the edge of the body opposite that edge at which the mouth opens. The construction will preferably be formedby the operation of molding the rubber body in a manner to imbed therein the conductors with their attached tubes 23, 30 of the construction as illustrated in the figure.-
electrical part of this connector will include well understood in the art, from each other and provided with an insulated sheath or coating, such as rubber. Each of these cords will mount one or more light sockets 41 if it is to be used for illuminating purposes or electrical components or fixtures of any desired type as required for the use or service to which the device is to be put.
One end of the conductor or lead 40 enlarged at 42 to afford a hand grip portion which may have roughened surface portions 44 to facilitate manipulation and handling. A body portion 46 projects from is preferably the enlargement 42, the same preferably being formed of rigid material, such as hard rubber, and being of a size to fit snugly in the mouth portion 32 of the passage in the body 10. This stud portion will preferably mount intermediate its ends a band 43 of conductive material, such as metal, and one of the electrical conductors in the electrical cord 40 will extend into and be electrically connected with the band 48. A second and smaller stud portion 50 is formed at the outer end of the stud portion 46 in concentric parallel relation to the part 46. This outer stud portion 50 will preferably be encircled for a part of its length by a metal or conductive band 52 which is electrically connected to the other wire or conductor in the electrical cord 40. A shoulder part 54 is formed between the studs 46 and 50. The sleeve 48 will be of a size to fit snugly in one of the large split tubes 30, and the wall 52 will be of a size to fit snugly within one of the small split tubes 28. The shoulder 54 will abut the shoulder 36 of the passage in the body 10. Thus, by the simple action of inserting the stud 46, 50 into one of the passages in the body 10, a good electrical connection is provided between the two Wires of the electrical cord and the two conductors 14 in the body 10. In this connection it will be observed that the studs 46, 50 are preferably cylindrical or of circular cross-section, and that the sleeves 48, 52 extend continuously therearound. Consequently, the rotative position or orientation of the parts as they are interfitted is not important or critical, and a good electric connection is effected by the simple operation of inserting the stud 46, 50 into a passage in the body until such time as its shoulder 54 strikes the shoulder 36 in said passage.
Another embodiment of the invention is illustrated in Figs. 4 and 5. In this instance the preformed sleeves 28 and 30 of the first embodiment are omitted and the conductors 14 are positioned so that they are exposed and preferably partially intersect a passage 37. The passage 37 is substantially of the same shape as the passage in the first embodiment except that the tubes 28 and 30 are omitted. Also, it is preferably of a cross-sectional size slightly larger than the stud so that the stud will assume an eccentric position therein, as illustrated in Figs. 4 and 5, when the sleeves 48 and 52 of the stud contact the conductors 14.
Assuming that the body 10 has a number of passages formed therein at spaced points throughout its length, it will be apparent that the cords or outlets 40 may be connected to the device at any selected point along the length of the body 10. This is particularly convenient when a Christmas tree is being trimmed and it is desired to locate the outlets 49 at positions adjacent to or convenient to the various limbs of the tree which are to be decorated or which are to carry the lights. In such an installation it is evident that the lights may be fastened to the limbs of the tree and then the stud end 46, 50 may be plugged into the body 10 at the nearest or most convenient point. Where the alternate passages open at opposite surfaces or edges of the body 10, it is possible to connect a large number of connectors or outlets in close spaced relation lengthwise of the body 10. Thus, all that is required insofar as spacing is concerned is that the adjacent passages which open at the same surface of the body 10 shall be spaced apart a distance sufficient to provide clearance between the enlarged grip portions 42 of the outlets. This will permit a longitudinal spacing of adjacent members facing in opposite directions substantially less than the diameter of the enlargement 42. The elongation of the member 46, and of the passage receiving it facilitates and enhances a frictional grip to hold the parts assembled without requiring spring fittings or the like to effect and maintain the connection. The flexibility of the body 10 is advantageous to enable it to accommodate itself to the shape of the member to which it is to be secured. Also, the provision of means to receive an attachment member or the like, such as the opening 12 in the body, is advantageous and desirable for convenience of use. The cylindrical shape of the stud and of the passage receiving the stud to eliminate special orientation of the parts is also an advantage, as has been discussed above.
It will be understood that, while the construction of the device as described above and as herein illustrated is preferred, changes in the construction may be made within the scope of the appended claims without departing from the spirit of the invention.
1. A separable electrical connector comprising a body formed of insulating material and having a pair of electrical conductors imbedded in spaced relation therein, said body having a passage therein, parts of said conductors being located in said passage, and an electric cord having a stud formed of insulation material at one end adapted for snug frictional fit in said passage, said stud mounting longitudinally spaced exposed conductors engageable with said first named conductors, said first named conductors including split metal tubes of different cross-sectional areas lining longitudinally spaced portions of said passages and each engageable by one of said stud-mounted conductors, said passage and stud each having end portions of different cross-sectional size and shoulders therebetween forming stops to accurately position said respective conductors in engagement.
2. A separable electrical connector comprising a body formed of insulating material, a pair of spaced electrical conductors imbedded therein and insulated thereby, a plurality of passages formed in said body transversely of said conductors and each having opposite end portions of different cross-sectional size, a pair of axially aligned spaced metal sleeves exposed at each passage, each sleeve forming a part only of each passage with its bore forming a continuation of the adjacent portion of said passage, each sleeve being electrically connected with one of said conductors, and an electric cord having a pair of conductors, a plug mounted on the end of said cord and having a stepped stud formed of insulating material and insertable in a passage, a pair of spaced metal sleeves encircling stud portions of different sizes, each stud sleeve being electrically connected to a cord conductor and having a snug sliding electrically contacting fit in one of said first named sleeves when said stud is inserted in a passage.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,946,759 Rohde June 3, 1924 1,996,699 Erhard Apr. 2, 1935 2,474,356 Harris June 28, 1949 2,576,165 Wood Nov. 27, 1951