US 3149896 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR Filed Nov. 4, 1960 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 I u m H I E'III u w w him n i'i H m in m H mu i w mm 9 .1 .r q- 66 m g7: u m n W H H H 62 I i lill m mini I! M" V ",4: 64
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JAMES R. HALL ATTOR Y5 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Nov. 4, 1960 INVENTOR.
United States Patent of Delaware Filed Nov. 4, 1960, Ser. No. 67,276 9 Claims. ('Cl. 339-75) This invention relates to a separable electrical connector, and in the embodiment thereof illustrated herein particularly relates to a separable connector adapted for use with cables in flattened, tape form.
The invention has among its objects the provision of a novel separable connector adapted for use with multiple conductor cables.
A further object of the invention is the provision of an improved separable electrical connector which may be used to advantage with multiple conductor cables of the fiat or tape type.
Yet another object of the invention lies in the provision of a separable connector of the type indicated, such connector being characterized by the ease and accuracy with which connection may be made to therespective conductors of a fiat multiple conductor cable.
Still a further object of the invention lies in the provision of a separable electrical connector which is particularly adapted in connecting a multiple conductor cable of the tape type to a rigid circuit element such as a board containing a printed circuit, the board extending at a marked angle to the main extent of the multiple conductor cable at the connector.
The above and further objects and novel features of the invention will more fully appear from the following description When the same is read in connection with the accompanying drawings. It is to be expressly understood, however, that the drawings are for the purpose of illustration only, and are not intended as a definition of the limits of the invention.
Inthe drawings, wherein like reference characters refer to like parts throughout the several views,
FIG. 1 is a fragmentary view in plan of an illustrative embodiment of .electrical connector in accordance with the invention, a major part of the cover portion of the connector being broken away for clarity of illustration;
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary view in plan of an end portion of a fiat multi-concluctor cable with which the connector is adapted to be used, the illustrated end of the cable having been prepared for reception by the connector;
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary view in plan of the assembled connector of FIG. 1 and the cable of FIG. 2, a part of the cover portion of the connector being broken away;
FIG. 4 is a view in transverse section through the assembly of FIG. 3, certain of the parts being shown vin elevation, the section being taken along line 4-4 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4, but taken along the sectioning line 55 of FIGS. 1 and 3;
FIG. 5a is a schematic view showing the relationship between a flat cable at the location AA of FIG. 2 and a contact finger of a connector in accordance with the invention.
FIG. 6 is a view in transverse section through the connector per se, the section being taken along a line laterally spaced from the sectioning line of FIG. 5, the figure showing two adjacent opposed contact-forming conductors in the connector and showing the connector with the cover portion thereof in open position; and
FIG. 7 is aview in side elevation of a connector per se in closed position, the view being taken in the direction from right to left in FIG. 6.
h illust t ve c nn o shown he n, which ,is generally designated by the reference character 10, is adapted for electrically connecting the conductors of a flat multie misses Ice Patented Sept. 22, 1964 conductor cable 11 to conductors of a rigid element such as a printed circuit board 12 which extends generally at right angles to the main extent of cable 11. The connector 10 shown may advantageously be employed, for example, mounted on a supporting surface such as the wall of a box and with the portion receiving circuit board 12 exposed so that the circuit board may be quickly changed as required as, for example, to supply difierent parameters to a circuit.
Connector 10 has a strong rigid housing shell 14 which may be made of metal. Shell 14 has a first, narrow portion 15 which extends vertically as the connector is shown in FIGS. 47, inclusive. Above portion 15 the shell extends horizontally on both sides of its longitudinal central plane. From the outer edges of horizontal portion 16 the shell rises vertically a short distance to form upper sidewall 17. Below shell portion 16 and secured thereto there is a longitudinally apertured plate 19 through which the lower portion of the connector shell extends. Plate 19 forms a flange member for the housing by means of which the connector may be secured to a suitable support such as the Wall of a box through an opening in which the lower portion of the connector extends.
Within the housing shell 14 there is mounted a twopiece electrically insulating insert having an external con.- tour complementary to the inner surface of the shell and closely interfitting therewith. The parts of the insert may be made, for example, of an electrically insulating rigid molded resin. The two insert portions, of which that to the left in FIGS. 4, 5, and 6 is designated 20 and that to the right in such figures is designated 21, contact each other along a generally central interface designated 18 (FIG. 6), the fiat confronting faces of insert members Zll and 21 being designated 18' and 18", respectively. The lower and upper parts of insert member 20 are designated 22 and 24, respectively, and the lower and upper parts or" insert member 21 are designated and 26Qrespectively. The manner in which insert members 2.0 and 21 interfit will be more clearly understood upon consideration of FIGS. 1 and 6. As there shown, the inner vertical edge portion of the insert member 20 has a plurality of vertically extending equally longitudinally spaced alternating grooves 23 and ribs 23', the confronting face of insert portion 21 has a plurality of equally spaced vertically extending alternating ribs 28' (FIG. 1) and grooves 28, the ribs in the one insert portion being received withinthe grooves in the other insert portion. Insert portions 20 and 291 are assembled as shown, after having had the contact fingerforming conductors, to be described, inserted therebetween. The upper surfaces of portions 24 and 26 of the insert lie generally along a plane 27 which lies at least slightly above the upper edge of portion 17 of the housing shell. The thus assembled insert parts are telescoped downwardly within the housing shell 14, in which they may be securedas by being adhesively bonded thereto. The upper rear edge of insert portion 20 has two aligned upstanding ears 31 integral therewith. A cover portion for the connector, generallydesignated 29, has a generally fiat body made of electrically insulating material such as molded resin. The rear edge of body 3.0has two longitudinally spaced slotted portions forming an elongated central ear 52 and two side ears 34. The ears 31, 3 2, and 34 interfit as shown in FIG. 3, and are pivotally secured together by two pintlepins 35 which extend inwardly from each ear 34 through car 31' and intothe end of the central earfitl. The thus described mounting of the cover portion 29 allows it to be opened to the position of FIG. 6 or beyond or to be brought into the closed operative position of FIGS. 4, 5, .and 7 wherein the generally flat lower surface 36 of body 30 of the cover portion lies slightly above and parallel to surface 2'7 of the composite insert 29, 21.
The lower vertical portion of the insert portion 20, 21 has a longitudinally extending recess 37 therein of such width transversely of the length of the connector as accurately to receive the edge of circuit element 12 therewithin as shown in F168. 4 and 5. Each of insert portions 2t) and 21 has a plurality of vertically extending inwardly open parallel grooves 39 and 44), respectively, intermediate the length thereof. Grooves 39 and 4b are vertically aligned with the interfitting ribs and grooves between insert portions 29 and 21 described above. Grooves 39 and 49, however, are somewhat deeper laterally than the first described grooves in order to receive therewithin respectively the lower left hand contact fingers 4i and the right hand contact fingers 42. Such contact fingers, which are similar in shape but reversed in direction, slant downwardly and inwardly toward the center line 18 so that the lower free ends of the fingers, which are curved downwardly and radially outwardly, project inwardly of recess 37 beyond the edges of grooves 39 and 4! when the fingers are in relaxed condition as shown in FIG. 6. The fingers are held tightly at their upper ends of which one is shown at 45 between confronting projections on the two insert parts, finger 4-1 being held between projections 28 and 44.
Above projections 23 and 44 the composite insert 20, 21 is provided with a series of longitudinally spaced recesses of which one series designated 46 is disposed in insert part 26. The recesses 46 and 49 are spaced so as to alternate with each other longitudinally of the connector and so as to underlie successive conductors of the multi-conductor cable 11.
The upper portion of each of the integral conductors of which contact finger 41 forms the lower end is reversely bent to form a generally 2 shaped portion having an upper contact finger 47 lying within the respective recess 46. The other series of conductors is similarly formed, the upper end of each being of reverse 2 shape and lying within the respective recesses 49. The upper end portion of such other series of conductors is designated 59. The integral conductors forming the contacts having contact fingers 41, 47 and 42, 50 are made of spring metal such as beryllium-copper alloy; in relaxed condition contact fingers 47 and 59 lie somewhat above the plane of surface 27.
In order to form a sealed connection with a multi conductor cable 11, there is provided a gasket having a main hollow oblong-shaped body 51 which is disposed in a similarly shaped groove in the composite insert 20, 21. The forward portion of such gasket is somewhat wider at 52- so as to underlie cable 11 over a broad area. The upper forward edge portion of body 30 of the cover has a broad gasket 69 inserted therein, so that when the cover is closed as shown in FIGS. 4 and cable 11 is forcibly engaged by sealing gaskets on its upper and lower surfaces.
The rigid circuit board 12 in the portion thereof to be inserted into connector 1% has a series of bared ribbon contacts 54 extending vertically thereof in its left hand surface and a series of similar bared ribbon contacts 56 in its right hand surface, the tapes 54 and 56 alternating in their spacing across the board. The contacts 54 and 56 are spaced so that the fingers 41 are aligned with and make electrical contact with conductors 54, and that the fingers 42 are aligned with and make electrical contact with conductors 56, as indicated in FIGS. 4 and 5.
The manner in which the end of cable 11 to be received within connector is prepared, and its mode of cooperation with the connector are shown more particularly in FIGS. 1, 2, and 3. As there shown, the upper horizontal portion 24 of insert part 2% is provided with a series of short upstanding pins 59 which are snugly but removably received within short bores 60 in the insert. The holes 6%) are disposed in alignment parallel to the longitudinal axis of the connector, one such hole being disposed equidistant between each successive pair of contact fingers 47. By the use of a plurality of pins 59 located in certain of the holes 69 a distinctive, cable-orienting pattern may be established whereby only one suitably prepared end of a cable 11 may be operatively secured to connector 10. Thus in FIG. 1 pins 59 are shown located in the first, second, fifth, and ninth holes from the left end of the connector. The end of cable 11 shown in FIG. 2 is designed to be connected to the thus prepared connector, and cannot be connected to a connector in which the pins are disposed in a different pattern.
The multiple conductor cable 11 has a plurality of thin, ribbon-like conductor strips which are sealed in spaced parallel relationship between upper and lower insulating layers which form an insulating body. A typical one of such cables employs conductors 62 made of thin copper strips and a body 61 made of clear, transparent thermoplastic material such as a polyester resin.
In preparing an end of cable 11 for connection to connector l0 aligned zones 64 of the insulating body 61 of the cable are removed, as by locally heating the cable, thereby leaving the conductor 62 bared in such zones. in FIG. 2 zones d4 are provided for each conductor 62, alternate zones 64 being so positioned as to overlie contact fingers 47 and 50. It will be understood that in some cases various ones of the conductors 62 and/or contact fingers 47 and Si) may not be employed; in such case the particular unused conductors are not bared, and thus remain insulated from the contact fingers which they overlie. In order to insulate successive conductors more securely from each other at the connector, aligned zones of alternate conductors beyond the point at which they make connection to their respective contact fingers are punched out of the cable 11 as indicated at 66.
After an end of cable 11 has been prepared as shown in FIG. 2, it is operatively assembled with the connector by swinging the cover 29 of the latter to open position, thereby allowing the end of the cable 11 to be superimposed upon the upper surface of the insert of the connector and the pins 59 to extend upwardly through the holes 65 in the cable. The cover 29 is then swung downwardly into the closed position shown in FIGS. 4, 5, and 7. Insert 39 of cover 29 is provided with a series of aligned downwardly open recesses 67 which receive the upper ends of pins 59. The end of cable 11 is firmly thrust downwardly upon the contact fingers 47 and 50, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, thereby resiliently deforming contact fingers 47 and 5t and insuring firm electrical contact between the contact fingers and the conductors of the cable. The forward end of insert 30 of the cover is provided with an inserted elongated gasket 69 which overlies and sealingly engages the upper surface of cable 11 when the connector cover is in closed operative position.
The cover is retained in such operative position by means of a longitudinally extending leaf spring 70 which overlies cover 29 and is centrally attached thereto by means of rivets 71. The opposite ends of leaf spring 70 are bent downwardly and inwardly at 72, each portion 72 terminating at its lower end in a reversely bent portion 74 which is adapted releasably to be engaged beneath protruding ledges 75 on the opposite ends of housing shell 14 of the connector. The thus described latching mechanism may readily be released by thrusting wing portions 76 of the leaf spring toward each other, thereby withdrawing latch portion 74 from beneath ledges 75. Preferably the construction of the latching mechanism is such that the parts thereof become lockingly engaged as shown in FIG. 7 upon the thrusting of the top 29 of the connector downwardly into fully closed position.
Although only one embodiment of the invention has been illustrated in the accompanying drawings and described in the foregoing specification, it is to be especially understood that various changes, such as in the relative dimensions of the pants, materials used, and the like, as well as the suggested manner of use of the apparatus of the invention, may be made therein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as will now be apparent to those skilled in the The generally T-shaped connector shown may be considered as being made up of two interconnected L-shaped parts, one carrying a set of contact fingers 41 and 47, and the other carrying a set of contact fingers 42 and 50. It is obvious that, if desired, one set of contact fingers with their functions may be omitted. In such case, the configuration of the connector shell and insert parts may be made generally L-shaped, there being one insert part such as part 26 in the shell carrying sets of integral contact fingers 42, 50, the other, confronting insert part having ribs received in grooves in part 26 and retaining the fingers in place in the latter. The lateral extent of insert part 24 and of the part of the shell containing it would then be "shortened, consistent with the necessity of mounting a cover on and clamping it in operative position above insert portion 26. Accordingly, the claims which follow are to be construed as covering both the above described constructions, as well as others, unless the claims are otherwise limited by their terms.
What is claimed is:
1. An electrical connector comprising a laterally extended electrically insulating support having a body and a connected leg portion extending at a marked angle with respect to each other, the leg portion having a plurality of spaced contacts disposed in a row adjacent its forward, free end, said contacts being adapted selectively to mate with the contacts of a circuit element, the contacts on the leg portion being electrically connected to first conductors which extend rearwardly of the said contacts on the leg portion and thence to the body of the support, and means on the support for securing a flat, multi-conductor cable to the body of the support and for electrically connecting the conductors of the cable to the respective first conductors at the leg portion of the support, said lastnamed means comprising a plurality of spaced spring contact fingers exposed at a broad surface of the body of the support, said cont-act fingers being electrically connected by said first conductors to the respective contacts on the leg portion, means movable toward the said broad surface of the body of the support for gripping said fiat cable having a plurality of spaced parallel conductors held by an electrically insulating tape-like body and thrusting it against the said broad surface of the body of the support with the conductors of the cable in overlying abutting electrical contact with the respective contact fingers, and means to retain the gripping means in engagement with the cable.
2. An electrical connector as claimed in claim 1, comprising a row of laterally spaced upstanding electrically insulating projections on the said broad surface of the body of the support, said projections being adapted to be received within holes in the cable to prevent withdrawal of the cable from the connector. I
3. An electrical connector as claimed in claim 1, where in said first conductors extending from the contacts on the leg portion are integral with the contact fingers, said first conductors and contact fingers being made of spring wire and being reversely bent so that the contact fingers are resiliently urged outwardly of said broad-surface of the body portion of the support.
4. An electrical connector as claimed in claim 3, wherein there are outwardly open recesses in the body portion of the support receiving and locating the reversely bent portions of said first conductors, and the contact fingers when relaxed extend outwardly of the open ends of the outwardly open recesses.
5. An electrical connector comprising a laterally extended electrically insulating support having a body and a leg portion extending at a marked angle with respect to each other, the leg portion having a plurality of spaced contacts disposed in two parallel rows adjacent its forward free end, the contacts in the two rows thereof being positioned so that successive contacts in each row are staggered with respect to the contacts in the other row, said contacts being adapted selectively to engage the contacts of a circuit element, two spaced rows of a plurality of spaced spring contact fingers supported and exposed at'a broad surface of the body, the contacts on the leg portion being electrically connected to the respective contact fingers by conductors which extend rearwardly of said contacts on the leg portion and thence to the body of the support, and means onthe support for securing a flat multi-conductor cable to the body of the support and for electrically connecting the conductors of the cable to the respective contact fingers, said last-named means comprising means movable towardthe said broad surface of the body of the support for gripping-said flat cable having a plurality of spaced parallel conductors held by an electrically insulating tape-like body and thrusting it against the said broad surface of the body of the support with the conductors of the cable in overlying abutting electrical contact with the respective contact fingers, and means to retain the gripping means in engagement with the cable.
6. An electrical connector as claimed in claim 5, where: in the support is of a laterally extended T shape, the leg portion forms the central leg of the T, the body of the support forms the head of the T, and the two rows of contact fingers are located in thebody po-rtion of the support generally on opposite sides of the central plane of the leg portion of the support.
7. An electrical connector adapted for cooperation with a flat mold-conductor cable having a plurality of parallel conductors mounted and insulated from each other by an electrically insulating tape-like body, said connector having an insulating support, an extended surface on the support, a plurality of aligned contact fingers mounted to be exposed on the support and resiliently urged in a direction outwardly of the support, the fingers being spaced to underlie and make electrical contact with the respective conductors of the cable, a row of laterally spaced upstanding projections on the said extended surface of the support, the projections being in the form of pegs removably mounted in holes in the support, said pegs being adapted to be received Within holes in the cable whereby the connector may be made to cooperate only with cables having holes therein arranged in a predetermined pattern, the pegs preventing withdrawal of the cable from the connector by motion in the direction of the main extent of the cable at the connector, and means for gripping the cable and thrusting it against the said extended surface of the support and toward the roots of the upstanding pegs with the conductors in engagement with the fingers.
8. An electrical connector adapted for cooperation with a fiat multi-conductor cable having a plurality of parallel conductors mounted and insulated from each other by an electrically insulating tape-like body, said connector having an insulating support, an extended surface on the support, a plurality of aligned contact fingers mounted to be exposed on the support and resiliently urged in a direction outwardly of the support, the fingers being spaced to underlie and make electrical contact with the respective conductors of the cable, a row of laterally spaced upstanding projections on the said extended surface of the support, the projections being in the form of pegs mounted on the support laterally between contact fingers on the support, said pegs being adapted to project through holes in the insulating body of the cable located between conductors of said cable whereby the connector may be made to cooperate only with cables having holes therein arranged in a predetermined pattern, the pegs preventing withdrawal of the cable from the connector by motion in the direction of the main extent of the cable at the connector, and means for gripping the cable and thrusting it against the said extended surface of the support and toward the roots of the upstandamasse ing pegs with the conductors in engagement with the fingers.
9. An electrical connector adapted for cooperation With a flat multi-conductor cable having a plurality of parallel conductors mounted and insulated from each other by an electrically insulating tape-like body, said connector having an electrically insulating support, an' extended surface on the support, a plurality of aligned contact fingers mounted to be exposed on the support and resiliently urged in a direction outwardly of the support, the fingers being spaced to underlie and make electrical contact with the respective conductors of the cable, a row of laterally spaced upstanding projections on the said extended surface of the support, said projections being adapted to be received within holes in the cable to prevent Withdrawal of the cable from the connector by motion in the direction of the main extent of the cable at the connector, and means for gripping the cable and thrusting it against the said extended surface of the support and toward the roots of the upstanding projections With the conductors in engagement with the fingers, the means for gripping the cable and thrusting it against the said extended surface of the support comprising a plate-like member selectively movable to a cable-gripping position closely overlying and parallel to the said extended surface of the support, and means to retain the plate-like member in said cable gripping position, the plate-like member having a plurality of laterally spaced recesses opening from the cable-engaging face thereof, said recesses receiving the outer free ends of said projections.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,731,609 Sobel Jan. 17, 1956 2,790,153 Arson Apr. 23, 1957 2,832,942 French Apr. 29, 1958 2,911,610 Kirk Nov. 3, 1959 2,928,063 Gammel Mar. 8, 1960 2,951,112 Dalilgren Aug. 30, 1960 2,965,811 Batcher Dec. 20, 1960 3,027,417 Turner Mar. 27, 1962 3,034,091 Gluck May 8, 1962 FOREIGN PATENTS 644,540 Great Britain Oct. 11, 1950 694,724 Great Britain July 29, 1953