US 2980880 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 9 F. c. WlNKLER ET AL 2, 80,880
WIRING DEVICE Filed Sept. 2'7, 1956 INVENTORS George J. Picho 8 Frederic C. Winkler. m 7 m ATTORNEY WITNESSES United tates 2,980,880 Patented Apr. 18, 1961 Ohio, assignors to Westinghouse Electric Corporation, East Pittsburgh, Pa., a corporation of Pennsylvania Filed Sept. 27, 1956, Ser. No. 612,480
3 Claims. (Cl. 3'39-50) This invention relates to electrical wiring devices and more particularly, to a fastening means for securing the various components of a wiring device together, and for securing the wiring device to a supporting panel.
In order to secure wiring devices, such as spaced lampholders to the spaced end plates of lighting fixtures, it has been common practice to provide spaced nuts in the face of the lampholder, which nuts have an integral sleeve rivet extending through a portion of the lampholder. The free end of each rivet is formed to 'both secure an insulating cover plate to the lampholder and the nuts to the lampholder. With such a construction, the screws for securing the lampholder to the end plate are inserted through the end plate, and through the sleeve portions of the rivets so that they may threadedly engage the nuts. As can be appreciated, such a construction is quite undesirable in view of the cost of providing a specially for-med nut and sleeve rivet. In addition, such a construction is undesirable as it prevents the heads of the screws from being readily accessible in lighting fixtures which are mounted in tandem and/or are provided with end covering plates. Some prior attempts to permit easy removal of the lampholder from the end plates have employed fastening means which extend from the face of the lampholders into engagement with the end plates or into engagement with means supported on the end plates. Such constructions have been undesirable as they have necessitated providing separate securing means for securing the insulating cover plates to the lampholder.
Accordingly, one object of our invention is to provide a new and improved wiring device having a minimum of structural parts which are held together by a single fastening means, which fastening means is also adapted for mounting the wiring device on a supporting panel.
A more specific object of our invention is to provide a new and improved lampholder having an elongated fastening member, which is deformed at one of its ends to clamp the components of the lampholder together and which has resilient arms at its other end to permit mounting the lampholder on a supporting panel.
These and other objects of our invention will become more apparent upon consideration of the following detailed description of a Wiring device constructed in accordance with the principles of our invention when taken in connection with the attached drawing, in-whichz Fig. 1 is an enlarged front plan view of a lampholder constructed in accordance with the principles -of our invention;
Fig. 2 is a back plan view of the lampholder as shown in Fig. 1, with one of the back cover plates therefor being removed to show the internal contact structure of the lampholder;
Fig. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the lampholder as shown in Fig. 2, taken substantially along the line III-III thereof with the fastening means being shown in elevation; and
Fig. 4 is a partial cross-sectional view of thelampholder as shown in Fig. 3, taken along the line IVIV, thereof, with the fastening means being shown in elevation. 1
Referring to the drawings, it will 'be noted that a lampholder constructed in accordance with the principles of our invention comprises a one-piece formed housing 2 of any suitable insulating material having sufficient structural strength. The housing 2 is preferably formed from a molded insulating material such as a phenolic material, which may readily be provided with the necessary structure as hereinafter described. It is to be realized that the basic construction of the housing 2 and the various components therein and their relationship to each other are well known in the art and do not per se constitute a part of our invention.
As is known, lampholders of the type shown are provided with a circular opening '4 which extends inwardly from the outer face of the housing 2. The outer face of the housing 2 is also provided with an inwardly extending slot 8 which extends from the opening '4 to one side of the housing 2. The housing 2 is also provided with an integral central barrier 6 which is located in wardly of the face ofhousing 2 and which extends diametrically across the opening 4. As is customary, the barrier '6 is provided with an outwardly extending projection 10 at each of its sides so as to be located within the area defined by the opening 4 and with their free ends being located substantially flush to the face of the housing 2.
Referring to Fig. 2, it will be noted that the housing 2 is provided with an integral flange 12 which extends outwardly from the back of the housing 2 around the entire periphery. The outer edge of the flange 12 is located substantially flush with the bottom of barrier 6, so that a chamber 14 is formed at each side of the barrier '6. It will be noted that the sides of each chamber 14 adjacent the barrier 6 are opened to the opening 4.
A generally L-shaped contact 16, which is formed from any suitable resilient electrically conductive material, such as an alloy of copper, is located in each chamber 14. As shown, the elongated arm of each contact 16 is located within a chamber 14 so that the opposite ends of one of its sides engage the inner surface of the face of the housing 2 and with the central side portion between the ends engaging the outer surface of the projection 10 adjacent thereto. The leg of each contact 16 extends outwardly from the barrier 6 and is supported by the housing 2 in any suitable manner. A suitable electrical conductor :15 is secured to each of the legs of the contacts 6 in any suitable manner. With such a construction, spaced terminals of a lamp (not shown) may be inserted through the slot 8, into the opening 4 of the housing 2, and into the chambers 14 so that they may be thereafter rotated to be located between the projections 10 and the long legs of the contacts 16, respectively, in a manner well known in the wiring device art.
As shown in Fig. 3 each contact 16 has a transverse width which is substantially less than the height of flange 12 so that the other edge 'of each contact 16 is located inwardly from the free edge of flange 12 of the housing 2'. Each chamber 14 is provided with an integral barrier 18 which extends inwardly from the flange 12 toward the barrier 6, but is spaced from the central portion of the long leg of the contact 16, to permit proper deflection thereof. The barrier 18 also extends outwardly from the inner surface of the face portion of housing 2 approximately the same distance as the lateral height of contact 16 so that the outer surface 20 thereof is in approximately the same plane as the outer edge of contact 16. In order to provide electrical insulation for each contact 16, a separate insulating cover plate 22 (only one of which is shown) is provided for each of the chambers 14, which is of a contour to be closely received within one of the chambers 14, andwhich is spaced inwardly of the free edge of the flange 12. It will be noted that the plate 22 is centrally supported on the surface 20 of the barrier :18 and is provided with a clearance opening 24 in alignment with a clearance opening 26 extending laterally through the barrier 18 adjacent the flange 12.
In accordance with the principles of our invention, the entire previously discussed structure is held together by means of a pair of spaced one-piece fastening members 28. Fastening members 28 are each formed from any suitable material which :is both resilient and which may readily be deformed, for example, an alloy of copper, such as one of the brasses. As shown, each :member .28 comprises anelongated cylindrical portion .30 which is of a diameter so as to be insertable through one of the openings 24 and into the opening 26 aligned therewith and .is closely received therein. .In order to definitely locate the position of the free end of the portion 30 with respect to the face of the housing 2, each member 28 is provided with .an integral laterally and outwardly extend-- ing collar 32 which engages the outer surface of the plate 22 adjacent the opening 24. Once portion 38 of the fastening member 28 is so located, the free end of the portion 30 is deformed to engage the housing 2 at a point spaced outwardly from the surface 20 of the barrier 18, whereby the plate 22 is clamped to the housing 2. Inasmuch as each plate 22 covers a chamber 14 with a contact 16 therein, the contacts 16 are prevented from being accidentally removed. The deformation of the free end of each of the portions 30 is accomplished in any suitable manner which is well known in the art. If desired, a bevel 34 may be provided in the housing 2 extending inwardly from the face thereof around each of the openings 26 to provide an area of engagement for the deformed portion of the portions 30. By such construction, the free end of the upper portion 30 may be located inwardly of the face of the housing 2.
It is of importance to note that although the openings 24 and 26 and the portion 30 have been described as being circular in cross-section, such a configuration is not essential for our invention inasmuch as any similar cooperable configuration may be employed in the identical manner as heretofore described. In order, however, to permit rapid manufacturing of such a fastening member 28, it is preferably circular in form so that it may be formed by any suitable high speed machinery such as an automatic screw machine.
In order to permit rapid assembly of the lampholder to an end plate .or any other suitable mounting panel, it will be noted thateach fastening member 28 is provided with a slot,41 extending diametrically therethrough and longitudinally thereof from its outer end to the inner end of the cylindrical portion 30'so as to form a pair of integral arms 38 which extend outwardly from the portion 30. Each arm 38 isginitially tapered longitudinally and laterally outwardly from its free end thereof to provide a cam surface 40. The inwardly located end of each cam.
surface 40 is extended longitudinally toward the collar 32 so as to provide a split collar 46. It will be noted,-
however, that the outer surface of collar 46 is spaced radially inwardlyfrom the outer surface of the collar 32. An inwardly extending recess 42 is also provided on each arm 38 of the fastener 28 between the collars 46 and 32 so as to provide a shoulder 44 between the inner end of the collar 46 and the recess 42. It will be noted, however, that the collar 32 is of a longitudinal length so that Its junction with the recess 42 is located on substantially the same plane as the outer edge .of the flange 12 of the housing 2.
With such a construction, the entire assembly may.
, 40 with the edges of openings 50 forces the arms 38 together so that the arms 38 of each fastening member 28 pass through an opening 50. The distance that the arms 3-8 may move through the openings 50 is limited by the engagement of the edge of the collar 32 adjacent the recess 42. As mentioned, such edge of the collar 32 is in V alignment with the outer edge of the flange 12 of the housing 2' so that the flange 12 also engages the front of the plate 54. As the arms 38 pass through the openings 50, the recess '42 on thezmembers 28 will reach a position so that the shoulders 44 also pass through the openings 50. Once the shoulders 44 have cleared the plate 54, the arms 38, .due to their resiliency, spring outwardly from each other .sothat the plate 54 is received within the recess'42. It, ofcourse, is obvious that the recess 42 must be of a length equal to the thickness of the plate 54. Referring to Figs. 2 and 3, it will be noted that each side of each arm 38 is provided with a flat portion in alignment with the sides of the upper portion 30 in order to provide ample clearance for the passage of the arms 38 through the openings 50. Inasmuch as openings 50 are slightly smaller than the normal spacing of the outer surfaces of the recess 42, the arms 38 of each member 28 will be biased toward each other when located in the openings 50 so that the entire wiring device is securely fastened to the plate 54. Further, if desired, the housing 2 may be provided with spaced supports 80 and 81 at opposite sides of the barrier 18 for supporting the ends of the cover plate 22.
Having described an embodiment of our invention, it is desired that the invention not be limited to the particular form specifically illustrated and described herein, as it will be readily apparent to persons skilled in the art that various changes and modifications may be made in the particular construction shown without departingfrom the broad spirit and scope of ourinvention. Accordingly, it is intended that all matter contained in the foregoing description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense. We claim as our invention: V
1. A wiring device comprising .a two-part housing formed from insulating material, one of said parts having an open sided chamber extending inwardly from .one side thereof, a contact located in said chamber, the other of said housing parts located to engage said one side of said one housing part to enclose the open side of said chamher, said one housing part having an opening extending entirely. therethrough alignedwitha corresponding opening in the other of said housing parts, a unitary fastening.
member having a shoulder .formed thereon spaced from one end thereof, said fastening member being located in said aligned openings with said shoulder engaging an outwardly facing surface of one of said housing parts, said. one end of said fastening member being deformed to engage an outwardly facing surface of the other of said housing parts so that 'said housing .parts are secured together and are fixedly secured to saidfastening member, said fastening member at its other end including integral spaced resilient arms having a lateral inwardly extending groove located about the outer peripherythereof so that said other end is adapted to be located in an opening in a mounting plate whereby said housing can be fixedly mounted on said mounting plate.
.2. A wiringdevi'ce comprising .a-two-part housing formed from insulating material, one of said parts having an open sided chamber extending inwardly from one side thereof, a contact located in said chamber, the other of said housing parts located to engage said one side of said one housing part to enclose the, open side of said chamber, said one housing part having an opening extending entirely therethrough aligned with a corresponding opening in the other of said housing parts, a unitary fastening member having a shoulder formed thereon spaced from one end thereof, said fastening member being located in said aligned openings with said shoulder engaging an outwardly facing surface of one of said housing parts, said one end of said fastening member being deformed to engage an outwardly facing surface of the other of said housing parts so that said housing parts are secured together and are fixedly secured to said fastening member, said fastening member at its other end including integral resilient means for latching with a mounting plate adapted to receive said resilient means.
3. A wiring device comprising a two-part housing formed from insulating material, one of said parts having an open sided chamber extending inwardly from one side thereof, a contact located in said chamber, the other of said housingparts located to engage said one side of said one housing part to enclose the open side of said chamber, said one housing part having an opening extending entirely therethrough aligned with a corresponding opening in the other of said housing parts, a unitary fastening member having a shoulder formed thereon spaced from one end thereof, said fastening member being located in said aligned openings with said shoulder engaging an, outwardly facing surface of one of said housing parts, said one end of said fastening member being deformed to engage an outwardly facing surface of the other of said housing parts so that said housing parts are secured together and are fixedly secured to said fastening member, said fastening member at its other end including integral spaced resilient arms having a lateral inwardly extending'groove located about the outer periphery thereof so that said other end is adapted to be located in an opening in a mounting plate, and said lateral groove being spaced from said shoulder an amount which enables said one housing part to be spaced from said mounting plate when said housing is mounted there- References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,329,880 Churchill Sept. 21, 1943 2,533,483 Losquadro Dec. 12, 1950 2,534,361 Ludwig Dec. 19, 1950 2,647,225 Cole et al. July 28, 1953 2,765,397 Harris Oct. 2, 1956 2,897,474 Heath July 28, 1959 FOREIGN PATENTS 304,540 Switzerland Mar. 16, 1955 481,485 Germany Aug. 26, 1929