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Publication numberUS2981922 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 25, 1961
Filing dateMay 16, 1956
Priority dateMay 16, 1956
Publication numberUS 2981922 A, US 2981922A, US-A-2981922, US2981922 A, US2981922A
InventorsNielsen Erik J, Valkenburg Hermon L Van
Original AssigneeSquare D Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Electric terminal strip
US 2981922 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

2 Sheets-Sheet l ELECTRIC TERMINAL STRIP H. L. VAN VALKENBURG ET AL April 25, 1961 Filed May 16, 1956 i .mg Z 2 52,. 2 NL n4/QN i d 0 g A VM A. a/0 W. 2 ffii/3.. l @I April 25, 1961 H. L. VAN VALKENBURG ET AL 2,981,922

ELECTRIC TERMINAL STRIP Filed May 16, 1956 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 1 inglthecomposite terminal strip. Y

"-adjustedlwithin the terminal strip.` l i g A further' object of the prseent invention the channel.

`specification and 'appended drawin Vfinfeferredi:embodiments in which:

. strip.

minal strip and illustrating ther one l'individual terminal blockv L. .Figure `6 is a fs'ectionalview Alltaken along the line of' .1 yI-vrrornigures: y f f 1 `lFi'gure 7fis anlfexploded Y.' efonthe; composite. terminal stripi 1,-; n Y 4Figureis a'perspective View of an endclamp. f" `V l.

2,981,922 ELECTRIC TERMINAL sTRiP Herman L. VanYalkenburg, Milwaukee, and Erik J.

Nielsen,4 Whitetish Bay, Wis., assignors to Square D Company, Detroit, Mich.,` a corporation of Michigan `EneaMay 16,195.6,ser- No. 585,345 6 claims.V (ci. 339-198) Thisin-vention relates to terminal strips and *more` par- Aticularlyl to a terminal stripcomposed'of joined individual to be clamped together to `form the composite terminal strip.

Another object `of the present invention is the ,pro-

vision of :iv termin-al` strip com-posed` of individual terminal blockmemberswith theindividuallmembers readily relasable @fromY change. a

the `composite strip -for removal or inter- A further object of the present invention is.r the pro- V'visionlof a terminal` stripy composed ofV individual terminal block members and asingle.intermediateyspacing unitI ith one. oftheterrninal block members cooperating with the spacing unit to .provide an yend unit `for the ter- `minal strip. Y y A furtherl object ofA the. present invention.` is `the prol vision o`f ay readily adjustable end clamp iforthe composite terminal strip which` may be easily maneuvered tozp'ermit manipulation of individual terminalblocks compris- Another l object of thepre'se'nt invention` is thei provision lofi Lan indicia Vstripfor.v composite terminal- `strips of the-V preceding objects which may be readily removed' and u is theprovision of an individual terminal 'block-and channely support construction whichwill `perinit: removal of tl'ie'ter` minal bloekifrom thechannelzwith lateralwmovementof 'the fblockwvith respect to the channel and rotational movej FigurerZ is a sectional view takenialong the flineJ IIL-IIr i ofiFig'ureL t l `Figure is.' a sectional view taken' alongthe lines III- ."IIIiofFigure l. 'i u `i .Figurev4 is a sectional.

`lVqoffFigure 1m viewitaken along the lines Y planview ofthe composite terj prelin'rinary= removalsof Figure Sis acpartialt'op o for an'tending" unit i United States Patent O ,terminaly blocks provided` with connectors to whichelectrical connections may bemade.

I f The object of the .invention is the provision of a terminal strip of -any desirable length `composed of individual tert'mlinal blocksinterlocking on adjacent sides and adapted Ace . The terminal strip 1 of the present Vinvention comprises an assembly of a plurality of individual terminal block units 2 supported on achannel 3 and clamped in place by a pair of endiclamps 4 and 5.

The .individual terminal block units 2 are constructed of a molded insulated material to provide a vertical barrier 6 rgenerally toward one side thereof land, a pair of `horizontal barriers 7 and 8. Barrier 7 is providedl with an extending rib 9 and bar-rier 8 is provided vwith a T- shaped slot 11. The side of the block along which the barrier 6 extends is provided with a pair of extending ribs 12 and the side of t-he block opposite to the rib portions 12 -is provided kwitha pair of slots 13. The barrier 6 is provided at its' top with an inverted T-shaped slot 14 immediatelyr above the horizontal barrier 7. In the space between the upper and `lower surfaces of the horizontal barriers 8 and 7, respectively, an electrically conducting connector 16 is provided with a horizontal groove {17 at its upper surface `for cooperation with the rib 9 to provide alignment of the connector within the block. The con-f nectorv 16 is provided with a pair of terminal screws 18 threading through pierced and tapped holes in the connector -for cooperation with the base of the connector kto provide -for electrically connecting conductors` to the ter- 7 minal strip.` A turned up nib 1-9 is provided at the base of the connector to function as a registering stop for conductors inserted into the connector. Adjacent individual terminal blocks 2 when joined together to `form the-composite terminal strip` -are interconnected rwith each other through the cooperation of the ribs 12 with the slots 1.3

fof the next adjacent unit and the vertical barriers 6 of the adjacent units enclose the connectors.16 snugly between their` adjacent surfaces. g l y v j Y To terminate a row of individual terminal blocks in the formation ofthe composite terminal strip yan intermediate spacing unit 21 is provided having a vertical barrier 22 with a Tshaped slot 2.3 and a pair'of extending ribs 24 i and 25 one at each side of the barrier 22. The ribs 24 andZS cooperate `with the grooves 13 of adjacent `individual termin-al block Lunits 2 with onel of the units rel versed with respect to the other asfshown in Figure 7 readilyrapp'arentto those skilled in they art from thel n so as to direct its 4grooves 13 in the opposite direction from` "the grooves ofl thev other assembled individual terminall block units. As alsosee'n in Figure 3, the termination t of the terminal strip constitutes the 'end terminal block 2 of the groups of termnal blocks `directed 'in an original direction cooperating with an intermediatespacing member-21, with the memberlllV also cooperating with a Yreversed terminal block 2V atzthe end of the terminal strip. The composite terminal strip is supported. on and clampedrto the U-shaped channel member 3 having horizontally extending portions 31 which extend fromV the ibaseportiontl. The extensions 31 cooperate with the 6'()v vbar portion of the T-shaped slot 11, .in` the individual terminal blocks and are'ofa dimension `to prevent direct vertical removal of theterminal block-from the channel f whenA the Tblock is .centrally aligned with VtheV channel.v

` perspective L view oftvvo'jter-y f minalv ybloei; units and an nintermediate spacingW unit iwith" -fxfgon'e` `offthe block unitsreversedft The end clamps f4 and 5 constituteidentical U-shaped members eachhaving -a bight -portion 32 j intermediate pairs. of depending` legs "33 and. S14-at each side-constitut- ..'ing tlnllegportions of the kU shape. The legs 33,'are- -feacl1' provided with an 'inwardlydirected portion 35i-andy thev legs34.are eachprovidedwith an inwardly directed portionl. VVApair of adjustable.clampscrews 37 are threaded thp'roughtappedf holes inthe bightportion-fASZ i offthe Ufshape and an aligning finger 3 8 is turned up members may be slid along the channel iinger 38 with the space block unit and may be there clamped in place by adjustvassembled an indicia strip may slots l14 in the individual units to provide a surface uponV Y which identication mayV be made for each of the terend by resilient rivet-like members 42 oversized head portion aligned with the crossbar portion from the bight portion at the end of the clamp opposite -the end provided with the clamping screws 37. The v clamp is adapted to be positioned on .the channel 3 with the outward flanges 31 positioned between the inner suri face of the bight portion 32 and the inner surface of the inwardly directed portions 35 and 36 on the legs 33 and 34 respectively. The clamp may be slid along the channel to any desired position to where its iinger 38 becomes .positioned between the ribs 12 of the individual terminal block members 2. In this position the clamp will align f the block members on the channel and will prevent lateral sliding of the blocks with respect to the channel. The clamp is secured in place by turning the adjustable screws 37 into the bight portion where the inner ends cooperate with the upper surface of the anges 31 on the channel 3 so that, as seen in Figure 4, the clamp pivots -about the j engagement of the inner surface of the portionr35 with the iunders'rurface of the extending flange 31 of the channel 3. With .-full adjustment of the screws 37 the clamp will be aligned with the inner surfaces of the inwardly directed t portions 35 and 36 cooperating with the undersurface of rthe lianges 31 of the channel ment of its adjustable screws 37. The adjustment of the -screws on the second clamp will effect at least a minor squeezing action to compress the units together through the rotary movement of the clamp -about its engagementV rwith the channel anges applying this force to the terminal blocks through the extending finger 38.

Once the complete composite terminal strip has been be passed through the minal strip sections. The strip may constitute a sheet of 'exible material 41 passing through the crossbar portion of the T-shaped slot 14 and may be held in place at each provided with an of the slot in the individual terminal block units. The inner portion of this member 42 is provided with a barbed shaft 43 for cooperation with the inner surface of a hole 44 in each of the terminal block units so that once the member 42 is inserted its shaft rwill engage the terminal block and provide a resistance to removal of the member. f

In Figures and 6 is illustrated the method for re- Ymoval or replacement of any of the individual terminal Y block units constituting the composite terminal strip l.

In Figure 5 the individual unit 2 is shown transversely moved on the channel 3 to substantially the position shown in full lines in Figure 6. To accomplish this movement, one or the other of the clamps at the end of the composite strip is released from its clamping engagement with the channel 3 by loosening the adjustable screws 37 thereof to permit movement of the clamp along the channel. With the clamp moved on the channel, the terminal strip may be. separated into its irldividual components of individual terminal blocks to permit access to any of the desired ones of the assembly.v The individual'terminal bloclemay then be moved as shown in Figures 5 and 6 to a position where the chanvnel 3 will be aligned to one side of the T-shaped slotinA .-'the' base of the terminal block. The terminal block may then be rotated about the side in engagement withrthe channel 3 to remove the opposite side of the block from vits alignment that side of the channel. l i In Figure 6 the position of the terminal blockafter thisv .rotary movement isl showni 'n' dot-dash lines' indicating.'

' piece into its assuma Y f the position of the terminal block just prior to complete removal from the channel. Another terminal block may be inserted in place in the composite terminal strip by reversing the order of manipulation; that is, placing one extending flange of the channel 3 in the crossbar portion of one side of the T-shaped slot 11 of the terminal block 2 and then rotating the block about its engagement with that side of the channel to position the channel for lateral movement into alignment with both extending portions 31 aligned-in the crossbar portion of the T- shaped slot 11. Y be reassembled into its Vcomposite form by re-aligning the ribs and slots in the adjacent terminal block units and by repositioning the clamp vat the then free end of the terminal strip.v Once again reassembled, the indicia strip 41 may be returned to its positions in the upper T- shaped slot 14 in the individual terminal blocks 2 and locked into position with the locking member 42.

Figs. 9 and 10 illustrate a modied form of an end clamp for use with the terminal strip of the present invention.- The clamp is of two-part formation with a sheet metal base piece 51 and an upper piece 52 which may be of moulded or cast construction. The base piece 51 is of a folded-over U-shape construction providing a pair of legs 53 and 54 and a bight portion 55. The inner surface of the bight 55 and the inner surface of the legs 53 and 54 are cut out prior to formation of the L-shape to develop a guide slot 56 for co- 31 of the channel 3 with the 53 and 54 below the chanoperaton with the anges bight 55 above and the legs nel. At the outer surface of the bight 55 an extending tinger 57 is provided for cooperation with the space between the ribs 12 of the end unit of an assembled terminal strip in the same manner as the finger 38 of the end clamp of Figure 8.

The upper piece 52 is of an L-shape formation with a bifurcated horizontal portion 58 and an upright portion 59. The upright portion 59 is provided with an extending rib 61 at the back and upper surface thereof for cooperation with the end block of an assembled terminal strip as will be seen with explanation of the assembled v vposition of the end clamp.

The bifurcated horizontal portion 58 is provided with holes 62 therethrough and the legs 53 and 54 of the base piece 51 have threaded holes 63 in alignment with 'the holes 62.

Adjusting screws 65 are adapted to extend through the holes62 and thread into holes 63 to eiect securing of Y the endclamp in place on the terminal strip.

Ea'ch of the legs 53 and 54 is also provided with a niba64 raised from the upper surface thereof and adjacent to the corner produced by the formation of the f guide slot 56.

The bottom surface of the horizontal portion 58 is `formed with a shallow groove 66 just slightly wider than 1 the dimension of the channel at the extending flanges 31 thereof and not quite as deep as the channel is thick to function as an alignment means for the clamp during assembly'with a terminal strip.

The end clamp shown in Fig. 9 can be used to replace the clamp shown inFigs. 1, 4, and 8, to secure the prescribed plurality of individual terminal units on the chan- When this arrangement is used, the molded part 52 is disposed above the iiangcs on channel 3 and the part 51 has a portion thereof extending to engage the bottom surface of the flanges on channel 3. Therefore,

- as the screws`65 are tightened, a clamping action will voccur between' parts 52 and51 to intimately press the clamp 52 against the top surface of the anges while clamp 51 is intimately pressed against the bottom of the flange. This will provide a frictional engagement hetween the clamp and channel and prevent'the clamp from sliding on the channel.

When this occurs, as shown in Fig. 1,0, lthe rib 61 will be in contact with the end. surface of the end block and conceal the ridges 12 formed The composite terminal strip maythen therebn `vi/ bile the lower clamping member S1 is rotated about rfulcrums 64 to push thevlinger 57 toward the end blockfandtherefore press the blocks of the entire terminal strip toward one another. In this connection it is to be noted that linger 57 is receivedin the space between the ribs 12 so as to preventtransverse movement of the end .blocks onV the` channel 3, j

It maybe` seenfrom the foregoing description of the component. parts ,of the terminal strip of the present in- .,vention that the Strip maybe made of any desired length through. the. selection of Hthe, proper quanti-ty` Qi. .indiividual terminal 'bylr'icl` unitsVV and that, individual` vselected units irnav :be .readily .removed .fromaflle assembled. Strip without the necessity of` threading all or portions of the strip off a frame or the like and then back on'again. Adjustment of the terminal strip requires a minimum of separation of the unit with an easily manipulatable lateral sliding and rotational movement of the individual block i desired to be replaced or removed.

While certain preferred embodiments of the-invention 'have been speciiically disclosed, it is understood that the spaced ribs on one side and spaced grooves complementary ltothe ribs on the other side, the ribs of each of said units but one at one end of the uncompleted row being received in the complementary grooves, respectively, of a next adjacent unit for interlocking adjacent uni-ts, an intermediate spacing member having spaced ribs on both sides complementary to the spaced grooves of said units, the ribs on one side of said spacing member being received in the grooves of the one of said plurality of units at the-other endof the uncompleted row thereby to partially complete said row, an additional terminal block unit similar to each of said plurality of units, the ribs on the otherside of said spacing member being received in the grooves of said additional unit to complete the row, whereby spaced ribs are presented at each end of the completed row, a support member, each of said units and said spacing member having means for mounting the units and spacingv'member on said support member so said units and spacing member have an unrestricted movement transverse of the completed rowy between limits, a pair of adjustable end clamps disposed at the ends of the completed row, respectively,

Y leach of said end clamps having means operable upon progressive tightening thereof for securing its associated end clamp in fixed position to said support member,Y a portion on each of said end clamps extending into` the space between said presented ribs at its. end of the' completed row to align said units on the support member, and means on said end clamps, respectively,'operative to progressively press said units and spacing member with increasing pressure as a-result of progressively said end clamps on the'support member.

2.. A terminal strip in accordance with claim lecharacterized in that each of said units and said spacingmember has an additional groove, saidadditionalgrooves are tightening :resinas tively, when said units. and spacing member are mounted onsaid support member, and said wing portions areszed withrespectto said slots to permit saidA unrestricted movement of. said units. and spacing member transverse of the completed rowwithin limits.

4. A composite terminalhstrip comprising a plurality of juxtaposed terminal blocks each havingV a T-shaped slot in the base thereof, an elongated support member received iii the T-shaped slots of the fblocks'and sized to aligned with each other when-said units and saidrspace ingmember are aligned in said completed row, and an l -I indiciastrip havinga length equal to the length of the completedv row4 -is received?v in said .aligned additional e f y 3; A composite terminal strip in accordance withclaim i `1'` characterized inethateach' of saidunit'sand said spac- 1 ing member has `a vT-shaped'slot in thebase `thereof kvde-VV ning va pair of oppositely directed slots, said supportv A member haswing portions received in'said slots, respecpermit the blocks to have unrestricted lateral movement with respect to the support member between limitswhen th-blocks are assembled on the support membern in a lrow 'to form a composite terminal strip, complementary interlocking means `on said blocks for interlocking with adjacent ones of the blocks to maintain the blocks in said row in alignment and to prevent relative lateral movement between the blocks, an adjustable end clamp at each end of said row, each of said-clamps having a means includingra portion cooperating with the interlocking means on -its associated end block for preventing lateral movement of its associated end block with respect to the support member, each of said clamps having fastening means for progressively tightening its associated end clamp to ysaid support member, and each of said clamps having means for tilting the lateral movement preventing portion thereof toward the blocks for pressing the blocks of said row together with increasing pres-- of juxtaposed terminal 'blocks each having a T-shaped v slot in the base thereof, an elongated support member received in the T-shaped slots of the blocks and sized lto permit the blocks to have unrestricted lateral movement with respect to the support members between limits when the blocks are assembled on the support member in a row to form a composite terminal strip, complementary interlocking means on said blocks for interlocking with adjacent one of said blocks to align the blockson the support member in said row and to prevent relative lateral movement between the blocks, an adjustable end clamp at each end of said row, each of said clamps having a means including a portion cooperating with the interlocking means on its associated end block for preventing lateral movement of its associated end block vwith respect to the support member, each of said clamps having fastening means for progressively tightening its associated end clamp to said support member, and a fulcrum on the aligning means. of each of said clamps for tilting the lateral movement preventing portion thereof toward the blocks for pressing the blocks of said row together with vincreasing pressurev as each clamp is tightened to said support member, whereby a force is applied by said aligning means parallel to said member' to press said blocks together tightly 6. A composite terminal strip comprising an elongated `U-shaped channel support member having outwardly turned flanges on opposite sides located in a common VVplaneto dene a generally T-shaped transverse'section, a pluralityof terminal blocks, each of said blocks having n an exposedV T-shaped slot complementary in shape to the outline of the T-shaped transverse section so that the individual blocks maybe'slid longitudinally on the support into juxtaposed; positions to provide a row of blocks on the support, means on each of said blocks providing amechanical interlockwith an adjacent block vto prevent relative transverse movement between the blocks 'l on thesupport when said Yblocks are juxtaposed, said T- shaped slots in the blocks being dimensioned suiciently greater than said T-shaped transverse section of thespport member so the blocks -have an unrestricted ytransverse movement on the .support between limits to permit pivoted and transversely VVmoved relative to the support,

and a clamping means on each end of the row, each: of said clamping means being slidable on the support memj ber and having means thereon for transversely aligning its associated end block of the row on the support member and for longitudinally pressing the blocks of the row together vwhen the clamping means is Vtightened on the support member.

'References Cited in the le of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 8 Milbank Oct. 17, 1950 Pierce et al.v Ian. 22, 1952 Immel et al. July 13, 1954 De Smidt Apr. 24, 1956 Morschel Feb. 5, 1957 FOREIGN PATENTS Australia Jan. 11, 1943 Switzerland July 16, 1934 Germany Mar. 22, 1933 Great Britain Dec. 20, 1946 Germany Nov. 12, 1941 Germany Oct. 2, 1952 Germany Apr. 29, 1954

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3094367 *Jun 29, 1960Jun 18, 1963Rodale Mfg Co IncDuplex receptacle and method of manufacturing
US3173738 *Dec 18, 1961Mar 16, 1965Amp IncTerminal block construction
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US3202958 *Feb 27, 1961Aug 24, 1965Baldwin Lima Hamilton CorpElectrical terminal strip
US3207956 *May 7, 1962Sep 21, 1965Square D CoElectrical component mounting and connection terminal block
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U.S. Classification439/716, D13/151, 439/717, D13/147
International ClassificationH01R9/26, H01R9/24
Cooperative ClassificationH01R9/26
European ClassificationH01R9/26