Wire holder and dispenser assembly
US 3104778 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept. 24, 1963 R. F. LEONARD WIRE HOLDER AND DISPENSER ASSEMBLY Filed Jan. 12, 1961 ATTOR/VfKj United States Patent 3,104,778 WIRE HOLDER AND DISPENSER ASSEMBLY Roy F. Leonard, 79 Spring Vaiiey Ave, River Edge, NJ. Filed Jan. 12, 1961, Eer. No. 82,290 9 Elaims. (Cl. 22134) This invention relates to wire holders in which a number of wires, cut to a pre-determined length, are stored in position for convenient removal, one at a time, at an assembly station in a manufacturing plant.
In the manufacture of electrical equipment, wires for installation in an assembly are cut to length and located on a bench in position to be readily available to a workman. It is an object of this invention to provide improved zpparatus for holding such wires, and more especially for holding them in a relatively small space and at the same time in a condition which prevents the different wires in a group from getting caught on one another so that time is lost in untangling them.
Another object is to provide a wire holder and dispenser for housing a large number of wires, including some of different lengths when desired, on a minimum of bench area. This saves time in requiring less frequent renewal of the stock of wire on the bench and also reduces the factory and bench space required for the assembly operation. The term dispenser is used herein in a broad sense to indicate a device that holds a part in position for convenient manual withdrawal, and not in the more restricted sense connoting ejection of the part from within the holder.
One advantage of the invention is that the apparatus is portable and can be loaded with cut lengths of wire in a stockroom for subsequent delivery to any bench when and where wires of the stored size and length are to be used.
Other objects, features and advantages of the invention will appear or be pointed out as the description proceeds.
In the drawing, forming a part hereof, in which like reference characters indicate corresponding partsin all the views;
FIGURE 1 is a perspective view showing a wire holder made in accordance with this invention;
FIGURE 2 is an end view showing a modified construction of the invention;
FIGURE 3 is an enlarged sectional view, partly broken away, showing the inside of one of the wire containing units of the assembly illustrated in FIGURE 1, but with the Wires omitted;
FIGURE 4 is an enlarged sectional view taken on the line 4-4 of FIGURE 3;
FIGURE 5 is an enlarged sectional view showing the Way in which a group of wires are connected to a support within the tubular unit of FIGURE 3, the view being taken at the level 5-5 of FIGURE 3; and
FIGURE 6 is a perspective view, partly broken away and in section, illustrating a modified form of wire support for use in the apparatus shown in the other figures.
FIGURE 1 shows a frame 10 in which a group of tubes are supported. These tubes include a number of relatively short tubes 12 and other longer tubes 14. The frame 10 is made of heavy wire with horizontally extending portions 16 connected together by vertically extending portions 18. There are spacers 20 extending between the front and back of the frame 10 and dividing the frame into separate sections for receiving each of the tubes 12 and 14.
A shelf 22 is supported by the frame 10 at the lower ends of the vertical portions 18, and this shelf 22 constitutes the lower portion of the frame and extends'along the entire width of the frame.
An easel frame 26 is connected to the frame It) by a pivot 28 (FIGURE 2). This easel frame 26 can swing on the pivot 28 into a position parallel to the tubes 12 and 14; but when in operative position, the easel frame 26 is held by a strut 30. The strut 3% is connected to the frame 10* at a pivot 32, and is joined to the easel frame 216 by a hook 34.
There are hooks 36 on the back of the frame 10 for hanging the frame from a wall, when desired; and for hanging the frame on similar frames to provide a battery of wire holders, as shown in FIGURE 2.
In FIGURE 2 there are additional wire holders with frames 1!). These additional wire holders are similar to the first wire holder, and corresponding parts are indicated by the same reference characters as in FIGURE 1, but with a prime appended.
Each of the tubes 12 is preferably open at both ends, but the lower end is cut off on a plane at an acute angle to the axis of the tube so as to leave an end face 40 which is elliptical and slopes upwardly from the back of the tube so as to expose the lower ends of wires 44. These Wires are housed within the tube 12 and the lower ends of the wires rest on the shelf 22, unless otherwise supported from within the tube.
If the wires stored in the tube 12 are shorter than the tube, then they are placed in the tube in a bundle and they are preferably supported by a rubber band 4 8 (FIG- URE 5) placed around the wires and twisted so as to grip the wires. The ends of this rubber band 48 extend around vertical portions 51} of a wire support 52 (FIG- URE 3) having upper ends 54 that hook over the top edge of the tube 12. Although it is not essential, the vertical portions 50 are preferably provided with kinks 56 for holding the rubber band 48 from sliding down.
The procedure with the rubber band 4 8 is to first piace the rubber band on the vertical portions 50 of the wire support 52, and then insert the wires 44 (FIGURE 5) into the rubber band. The wires are then turned endover-end a few times to twist the rubber band 48. This turning of the wires must be done with the rubber band located high enough on the vertical portions 50 to prevent the wires from striking against a loop 58 that connects the lower ends of the vertical portions 5% of the wire support.
After the rubber band has been twisted to grip the wires as tightly as desired, the wire support 52, together with the rubber bands 48 and wires 44, is inserted into the upper end of the tube 12 and pushed downwardly in the tube until the hooks 54 prevent further downward movement. The wires will ordinarily be projecting from the top of the tube 12 when the support 52 has been fully inserted, and the wires are then pushed down'in the tube until their lower ends project beyond the end face of the tube at a location where they can be gripped for pulling one wire at a time out of the tube, as needed.
The pushing of the wires down in the tube may cause the rubber band to slide downwardly on the vertical portions 50 of the wire support; or if the rubber band is held against sliding by the kinks 56, then the wires can slide in the rubber band. The purpose of the oifset in the loop 53, best shown in FIGURE 4, is to prevent the loop 58 from interfering with the downward movement of the wires 44.
When the wires in a tube 12 are longer than the tube, the wires are bent with a hairpin bend, and they are inserted into the tube from the upper end with the bend of the wire lowermost. Wires placed in a tube in this bent condition do not require a rubber band for holding them in the tube because the resilience of the wire tends to spread apart above its bend and the upwardly-extending pontions of the wire press against the inside surface of the tube with sufficient friction to prevent the wires from sliding out of the tube too easily.
When each length of wire is more than twice the length of a tube 12, such lengths can be housed in thelonger tubes 14. Sometimes it is desirable to use shorter tubes with wires that are more than twice as long as the tube. in such cases, the wire can be used with a supporting loop 65?, as shown in FIGURE 6. In this case, a single length of wire is shown in the tube 12 so as to illustrate the assembly more clearly; but it will be understood that a number of wires are similarly assembled with the tube 12 and loop 6% FIGURE 6 shows a wire 62. having a hairpin bend 64 at its lower end. This bend is exposed at the bottom of the tube in the same way as the bends are exposed at the lower ends of the other tubes. One side of the wire, above the bend 64, has a termination 66 within the length of the tube 12; but the other side of the wire has a verticallyextending portion 63 considerably longer than the tube 12. At the upper end of the portion 68 there is another hairpin bend 7t) and then the wire extends downwardly to a termination 72 somewhere between the upper and lower ends of the tube 12. The upper hairpin bend 70 can not be pulled down through the tube because it would hook on other wires when a workman attempted to pull it from the tube. To prevent such an occurrence, the hairpin bend '75} extends around the loop 60, which is hooked over the upper end of the tube 12.
As the wire 62 is pulled down in the tube 12, to re move it from the tube, the vertical portion 68 moves downwardly and the portion of the wire beyond the hairpin bend 7b drags across the loop 60 in the manner in which a rope passes across a pulley or deadeye, with the result that the hairpin bend 7b is shifted progressively toward the end of the wire and is eventually eliminated so that it can not catch on other wires in the tube.
The tubes 12 and 14 are preferably filled with wire in a stockroom and marked with legends 76 indicating the contents of each tube. This legend will ordinarily be a parts number of the equipment being assembled at a workbench.
When the tubes 12 and 14 are inserted into a frame at a workbench, or elsewhere, the shelf 22 keeps the wires from falling out of the tube; but when tubes are handled prior to insertion into the frames 10 or 10', it is desirable that the wires have sufficient friction within the tubes to prevent them from sliding out. It is for this reason that the rubber band 48 (FIGURE 5) is used with single wires which do not press against the sides of the tube in the same manner as the bent wires, as already explained.
It will be understood that the same assembly operation may require a number of wires of different length. The
assembly of tubes shown in FIGURE 1 has single'wires' in the left-hand tube 12 and in the two right-hand tubes 12. The single wires in these different tubes may be of different lengths and constitute different parts numbers of the apparatus being assembled.
Some of the other tubes shown in FIGURE 1 are filled with bent wires, as indicatedby the hairpin bends resting on the shelf 22.
The preferred embodiment of the invention has been illustrated and described, but changes and modifications can be made and some features can be used in different combinations without departing from the invention as deon which the retainer is hooked, a group of wires within the tube and between the portions of the retainer on opposite sides of the bend, and an elastic band extending around both portions of the retainer and aroundthe group of wires, the band being twisted on both sides of the group of wires and between said group of wires and the adjacent portions of the retainer to f-rictionally grip the gnoup of wires.
2. The wire supply holder described in claim 1, and in which the bend in the retainer is in a plane at an angle to the length of the tube and retainer so that said bend is off-set from the group of wires, said wires extending beyond the bend and beyond the open front of the tube.
3. A wire supply holder including a group of tubes extending upwardly and open at their lower ends with the lower end face of each tube extending upwardly so that the wall of the tube is shorter at the front of the tube than at the back, a frame holding the tubes assembled side-by-side in a row with the lower open ends exposed at the front of the frame for lateral exposure of wire stored in said tubes and for convenient successive removal of wires from said tubes, and means at the back of the frame for supporting the frame at the back of a work bench or other location where the wires are to be used, and in which there are a plurality of frames and each of the frames holds a group of tubes extending upwardly and open at their lower ends, and assembled side-by-side in a row with the fronts of the lower open ends of each group of the tubes exposed at the front of the frame, and each frame has similar means for supporting the'frame, and the supporting means is in position to support eachfsuccessive frame from. one of the other frames and at the front thereof at a level that locates the open lower ends of the tubes in the successive frame at a level higher than the lower ends of the tubes in the first frame whereby the lower ends of the tubes I in all of the frames are. exposed from the front.
4. The wire supply holder described in claim 3 and in which the frames are made of wire elements, some of which extend horizontally across the fronts of the frames, and the means for supporting each frame includes hooks that engage said horizontal wire elements. Y
5. A wire supply assembly comprising an invented tube extending upwardly and open at its lower end across the full width of the tube, a support below the lower open end of the tube, the lower end of thetube terminating in an end face extending at an acute angle to the horizontal and 'to the longitudinal axis of the tube, a frame holding the tube in such a position that the highest side of the end face is at the front of the assembly and at a substantial distance above said support, and said lower end face of the tube slopes upwardly at a relatively steep angle to the horizontal whereby wires in the tube have substantial lateral exposure through said open end and there is space enough between the support and the end of the tube at the front thereof for wires to be conveniently grasped and pulled from the tube through its open end, a plurality of lengths of wire within the tube and extending lengthwise thereof with ends of the respective lengths of wire extending beyond at least the higher portion of the end face of the tube, the frame that holds the tube including means for preventing angular movement of the tube about its longitudinal axis, and said support being in position to limit movement of the lengths of wire in the direction of the axis of the tube.
6. The wire supply assembly described in claim 5, and in which there are a plurality of tubes of relatively small diameter and connected to the frame in parallel relation to one another and with the bottom opening of each-tube facing forward and away from the frame.
7. The wire supply assembly described in claim 6, and in which there are retaining means for the wires in the tubes including resilient elements to grip the wires with 5 yielding pressure so that the wires are retained by friction with said resilient elements.
8. The wire supply assembly described in claim 6, and in which the support includes a shelf adjacent to the lower ends of the tubes and sloping away from the end faces of the tubes in the direction of the fronts of the tubes and at an obtuse angle to the longitudinal axis of the tubes, the shelf being unobstructed from the front thereof.
9. The wire supply assembly described in claim 6 and in which there are a plurality of lengths of wirein each tube, each of the lengths of wire being bent into a reverse bend but with the length of wire beyond both sides of the bend bearing against inside surface of the tube and pressed against the surface of the tube by the resilience of the metal at the bend of the wire, and the wires being held against downward sliding movement in the tube at least partially by the friction produced by pressure of the wire against the inside surface of the tube, each length of wire having its reverse bend at a lower level than the termination of the lower end of the tube at the front thereof whereby the reverse bends of the wires are exposed and are in position to be gripped to pull the wires from the tubes.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 331,484 Elam Dec. 1, 1885 556,068 Schloss Mar. 10, 1896 1,562,369 Schmidt Nov. 17, 1925 2,881,947 Hancock Apr. 14, 1959 2,930,486 Hoover Mar. 29, 1960 2,958,261 Henig Nov. 1, 1960