US 3121598 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Feb. 18, 1964 D. MARASCO ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR ASSEMBLY Filed Oct. 4, 1960 ATTQRNEYS United States Patent F 3,121,593 ELECTRHQAL CUNNECTOR ASSEh llllfy Anthony It). lvlaraseo, Norwalir, Conn, assiguor to El. Nottingham d: (10., End, New Yorlr, NFL, :1 corooration of New lforlr Filed flat. 4, 19nd, Ser. No. 6%,456 l Gairn. Ci. 339-bit} he present invention relates to a new and novel electrical connector assembly and more particularly to an electrical connector assembly adapted to provide a good electrical connection between a pair of members and at the same time provide an effective fluid-tight seal therebetween.
The present invention is especially adapted for use in connecting the ends of cables such as used in welding installations wherein it may be desired to connect various lengths of cable in accordance with the location of the articles which it is desired to weld.
in these types of applications, it is desirable to provide an electrical connector assembly which can be quickly and easily connected and disconnected, and at the same time the connection must be such as to provide an eiiective fluid-tight joint around the electrical connectors. This is necessitated due to the fact that the entry of moisture into the joint between the two electrical connectors is liable to diminish the effectiveness of the electrical connection and also is likely to cause corrosion of the electrical connector components.
In addition, the entrance of moisture into the joint between the two cable ends is a safety hazard since it is likely that a person coming in contact with the joint may receive an electrical shock.
A further problem in connection with electrical connector assemblies as used for example in welding installations is the fact that the cables are normally positioned on the ground or other supporting surface, and the cables as well as the connector assemblies are subjected to rather heavy use due to the fact that trucks or other vehicles may run over the connector assemblies, and also there is the possibility that various heavy objects may be accidentally dropped upon the assembly. Accordingly it is necessary to provide a very rugged arrangement which is adapted to resist damage even when subjected to such heavy use.
in the present invention, each of the electrical connector members is, of course, connected with the electrical conductor of an associated cable, and the electrical connector members are adapted to intercooperate with one another to provide an efiective electrical connection therebetween.
The connector members are each supported within a body means formed of electrical insulating material. The two body means are provided with intercooperating means which provides both a primary and a secondary seal to ensure that there will not be any fluid leakage between the two body means when the connector assembly is in operative interlocked relationship.
The end portion of one of the body means is provided with a recess which receives a projection formed on the other body means. The overall arrangement is such that the projection fits tightly within the recess and is held in such position when the assembly is connected to provide a first or primary seal therebetween.
in addition, one of the body means is provided with a longitudinally extending bore having an annular seat in surrounding relationship thereto. This seat is of a particular configuration such that it tapers toward the outer end of the associated body means. The other body means is provided with a longitudinally extending projection which fits within the bore of the opposite body means and 3,l2l,58 Fatented Feb. 18, 1954 2 is provided with a radially projecting, peripherally extending lip at the outer end portion thereof, this lip being received within the aforementioned seat.
The lip is provided with an arcuate or substantially semicircular outer configuration, this arcuate surface being adapted to engage the wall of the associated seat and to provide an effective seal therebetween. It is important to consider the interaction of the lip and seat in this regard. The arcuate surface of the lip is adapted to effectively seal with any portion of the tapered seat such that regardless of small manufacturing tolerances which may exist in the two body means, the lip on the one bod-y means is adapted to always ellect a good fluidtight seal with the tapered seat formed on the other body means. In addition, the cooperation of the lip and seat is such as to hold the two body means in their assembled relationship so as to maintain the electrical interconnection therebetween and the fluid seal therebetween.
An object of the present invention is to provide a new and novel electrical connector assembly which is especially adapted for use with heavy-duty welding cables and the like and which withstands abuse and rough handling without damage thereto.
Another object of the invention is the provision of an electrical connector assembly which can be quickly and easily connected and disconnected.
A further object of the invention is to provide an electrical connector assembly which provides a good electrical interconnection, and at the same time provides a primary and secondary seal between the two body means so as to ensure that a fluid-tight joint is obtained.
Other objects and many attendant advantages of the present invention will become more apparent when considered in connection with the specification and accompanying drawings, wherein:
PEG. 1 is an elevation of the present invention shown in disassembled relationship to one another with the connector assembly associated with two cables;
FIG. 2 is a longitudinal sectional view of the components shown in H6. 1 when in assembled operative relationship to one another;
PEG. 3 is a section taken along line 33 of FIG. 2 looking in the direction of the arrows;
PEG. 4 is an enlarged view partially broken away of a portion of the structure shown in FIG. 2; and
FIG. 5 is an enlarged view illustrating the configuration of the cooperating lip and tapered seat of the first body means.
Referring now to the drawings wherein. like reference characters designate corresponding parts throughout the several views, there is shown in FIG. 1 a pair of cables indicated by reference numerals ill and di l having conventional electrical conductors l2 and 13 disposed therein. Disposed around the cables are bodies of insulating material 15 and 16, the bodies of insulating material ineluding enlarged neck portions 15 and 16' respectively which merge into the respective body means Ztl and 21. it will be understood that the insulating material from which portions 15 and 16 as well as body means 20 and 21 are formed can comprise any suitable substance such as rubber or the lilac.
As can be seen in both FIGS. 1 and 2, body means 20 includes a first portion 22 defining a substantially frustoconical surface which merges into a cylindrical surface 23. Cylindrical stuface 23 is joined with a reduced cylindrical portion The outer end of the body means 2d is provided with an annular extending groove 25 and terminates in a lip portion 26 at the outer end thereof.
The outer configuration of body means 21 is similar to the aforedescrlbed configuration of body means 20, body means 21 including a husto-conical surface St), a cylindrical surface 3d, a reduced cylindrical portion 32,
a groove 33 and a lip 34 formed at the outer end portion thereof.
Jody means 2%) is providde wtih a longitudinally extending here which opens through the outer end portion thereof, the bore being divided into inner and outer portions by a radially inwardly extending wall portion 40 having a central opening formed therethro ugh. Embedded within the body means 20 and disposed Within the inner portion of the bore is a first electrical connector means 41 formed Olf electrically conductive material such as brass or the like. Connector 411 includes a main cylindrical portion 42 and a reduced cylindrical portion 4'3. It will be noted that a first bore 44- is provided through the reduced cylindrical portion 43, the electrical conductor means 1-2 of cable 1G extending within bore 44 and being securely attached thereto as by crimping as indicated by reference numeral 45.
The main cylindrical portion 42 is provided with a bore fill, the bore th opening through the end of the connector 41 adjacent to wall 40. Bore 5-0 is adapted to receive the electrical connector associated with body means 21, and order to provide a certain degree of resilience to connector ll, longitudinally extending slots 52 are provided through the wall of cylindrical portion 4?. to enable connector 4 1 to snugly receive the other connector. These longitudinally extending slots are shown in FIGS. 3 and 4, the slots being shown as being four in number.
The outer portion of the longitudinal bore formed in body means 29 is that portion of the bore to the right or" the radially extending wall all as seen in the drawings, and as seen particularly in FIG. 5, an annular seat 55 is formed in body means 269, the seat being disposed in surrounding relationship to the outer portion of the bore. As seen in "FIG. 5, it will be noted that the wall of the seat 55 extends radially outwardly for a short distance along portion 56 thereof and then the Wall portion forms an arcuate area 57 to a point indicated by reference numoral 58. The wall of the seat 55 then tapers toward the outer end portion of body means 2% thereby defining a tapering seat.
As seen particularly in FIG. 2, the outer end portion of body means 26 is provided with a recess 69. This recess 6G may be of any desired configuration, but in the particular example, it may be circular, it being noted that the outer portion of the bore opens through the central area of the recess 60.
Body means 2d includes a first longitudinally extending projection 65 which may be of substantially cylindrical configuration and is so dimensioned that it is adapted to fit snugly within the recess 6% formed in the outer end portion or" body means 26. The intercooperation between the projection es and recess 60 is such as to provide a primary seal between the two body means 20 and 21. Body means 21 also includes a second longitudinally extending projection 66 which is also substantially cylindrical in configuration but of less diameter than projection 65. Projection 66 is of such an outer dimension that it is adapted to fit snugly within the outer portion of the bore formed in body means 20. Formed at the outer end of projection 66 is a radially outwardly projecting peripherally extending lip 67, this lip being more clearly shown in FIG. 5. It will be noted that the outer surface 63 of lip s7 is arcuate and in fact defines a substantially semi-circular configuration. The dimension of lip 67 is :such that it is normally adapted to snugly fit within the greatest dimension of the seat 55 formed in body means 2%. However, it is apparent that regardless of where the lip portion 67 seats on the wall of the tapered recess 55, the arouate configuration of the lip is such that it can readily seat and seal against the wall of the seat.
The longitudinally extending dimension of projection is such that when lip 67 thereof is seated within seat 55, the projection d5 will be drawn tightly into the recess 6d formed in body means 2G, or in other words, body means .21 will actually snap into place with respect to body means 20 and will be firmly held in sealing position relative thereto by engagement of the lip 67 within the seat 55 in body means 20.
it will, of course, be realized that due to normal manufacturing tolerances, the lip 67 will not always seat in the same position within seat 55, and in order to ensure that the two members will be snapped together and that an effective fiuiddight seal will be obtained, lip 67 is also adapted to seat at point along the tapered portion 59 of the seat 55. This arrangement in cooperation with the inherent resiliency of the body member 28 as veil as body member 2 1 enables the two members to always be effectively connected together to maintain a primary seal between projection 65 and recess 6t) and a secondary seal between the lip 67 and the seat It is evident that this cooperation serves to ensure that a good fluid-tight seal will be obtained at all times.
A second electrical conductor 73 is embedded within the central portion of body means 21 and includes a main cylindrical portion '71 which extends through the projection as of body means 21 and longitudinally outwardly thereof. it will be noted as seen in FIG. 2 that the outer end portion of cylindrical portion 71 of the connector '7 0 is received within the bore 5!) formed in connector 41. The outer dimension of cylindrical portion 7' 1 is'such that it will be snugly received within the bore 5% of connector 41 and will also extend snugly through the central opening formed in radial Wall 40 formed on body means 20.
Connector 7% is also provided with a cylindrical portion 1'2 of reduced diameter having a bore 73 formed therein. he electrical conductor l3 of cable 11 is electrically connected with connector 7% since the conductor 13 extends within bore 73 and is crinrped in operative position as i dicated at '75.
It will be noted that the cables as well as the electrical connectors are embedded in each of the body means of the present invention thereby providing complete protection for the electrical elements, the body means being of enlarged r forced construction so as to resist heavy abuse during use. it is apparent that the electrical connector memos-rs are adapted to cooperate with one another to provide an ellective electrical connection between the two cables when in assemb ed position as shown in FIG. 2.
in addition, the two body means intercooperate to provide both a primary and a secondary seal so as to ensure an effective fluid-tight joint at all times, and the tapered Wall of seat 55 in body means 29 ensures that lip 67 will always be effectively sealed thereagainst regardless of the relative position of the lip with respect to the seat, and further ensures that body means 21 will be held in the proper operative position with respect to body means 20. Additionally, the tapered configuration of seat 55 facilitat s removal of the lip 6'7 from the seat when it is desired to disconnect the two body members since it is evident that the body means 2% adjacent to the longitudinal bore thereof must be deformed in order to remove the lip 67 and projection 66 from body means Zil. Obviously, the tapered wall portion 59 is adapted to more readily deform than if such wall portion extended substantially radially as does wall portion 56.
In the foregoing description, the two body means, each of which is associated with a terminal end of a cable, have been disclosed as incorporating a single electrical connector therein. it will be readily apparent that each of the body means may be employed with a cable having more than one electrical conductor encased therein. In such cases, the body means may be readily modified so as to provide a plurality of electrical connector assemblies such as disclosed hereinbefore, each of the electrical connector assemblies being of substantially identical construction. In such ca es, each electrical conductor within the cable will be connected with associated electrical connectors, and the body means will be provided with a plurality of cooperating bores and projections, the bores each being provided with a tapered seat and each or" the projections being provided with a lip formed at the outer end thereof. in this manner, regardless of the number of duplicate arrangements provided in each body means, primary and s condary seals will be obtained in association with each ir of cooperating electrical connectors so as to ensure etiective fluid-tight seal therebetween. It is contemplated that in actual practice, such multi-connector arrangements will be widely employed.
t is apparent from the foregoing that there is provided a new and novel electrical connector assembly which is especially adapted for use with heavy-duty cables or the like and which can withstand rough use without damaging the components thereof. It is evident that the connector assembly can be quickly and easily assembled and disassembled merely by moving the two body means toward one another for coupling the elements or by pulling them apart to decouple the elements. The connector assembly will snap into operative position and will remain firmly in operative position until considerable force is applied to disconnect the assembly. A good electrical connection is provided between the two cable ends by this type of connector assembly, and yet a very good fluid-tight seal is produced by providing a primary and a secondary seal between the two body means.
At this invention may be embodied in several forms without departing from the spirit or essential characteristics, thereof, the present embodiment is therefore illustrative and not restrictive, and since the scope of the invention is defined by the appended claim, all changes that fall within the metes and bounds of the claim or that form their functional as well as conjointly cooperative equivalents are therefore intended to be embraced by the claim.
An electrical connector assembly, comprising a male member and a female member, the female member having a longitudinally extending centrally disposed passageway formed therein which opens through one end of the female member, a metallic electrically conductive socket embedded in the rear portion of said passageway, an annular groove of arcuate cross-sectional configuration disposed about said passageway forwardly of the socket, the remainder of said passageway from said groove to the open end thereof being of cylindrical formation, a metallic electrically conductive elongated plug having its inner end portion embedded in the male member and with its outer portion extending forwardly therefrom, a cylindrical sleeve integral with the male member and extending outwardly and around a part of the outer portion of the plug, said cylindrical sleeve being completely received in said remainder of the passageway when the plug is operatively disposed within said socket, a bead formed integral with and extending radially outwardly from the terminal end of said sleeve, said head being semicircular in cross-section for reception in said groove for providing a fluid-tight seal between said male and female members and to hold said members in their assembled operative relationship, said groove in said female member including an outwardly extending wall portion remote from the open end of said passageway, said outwardly extending wall portion joining with an intermediate arcuate wall portion which in turn joins with a tapered wall portion nearest to said open outer end of the passageway, said tapered portion tapering inwardly toward said open outer end of the passageway, said groove having a greater longitudinal dimension than said bead to permit said head to be positioned at different positions relative to said groove to compensate for manufacturing tolerances whereby said bead is adapted to cooperate with said tapered portion of the groove to form an eifective fluid-tight seal therewith in all positions of the bead with respect to the groove and to hold the male and female members in their assembled relationship.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,037,630 Hudson Apr. 14, 1936 2,677,115 Stevens Apr. 27, 1954 2,710,385 Sprigg June 7, 1955 2,742,622 Stevens Apr. 17, 1956 2,742,624 Stevens Apr. 17, 1956 FOREIGN PATENTS 490,013 Great Britain Aug. 5, 1938 E 9,895 Germany Aug. 30, 1956