US 3186746 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 1, 1965 w, $.fATTwooD ETAL 3,186,746
LATCHES h Filed Dec. 5, 1962v 2 sheets-sheet 1 Attorney United States Patent O "i ce 3,186,746 LATCHES William Spencer Attwood, St. Albans, and Harold Ernest Cover-ley, Redhourn, England, assignors to General This invention relates to latch mechanism suitable for use on motor vehicles to secure the hood or deck lid closure members of an engine or luggage compartment.
The invention particularly contemplates latches of the type indicated which are economical and simple to produce and dependable in operation since they contain very few easily fabricated parts and require no critical -assembly tolerances.
A hood latch mechanism illustrative of the invention includes a pair of stili but resilient wires each having one end substantially fixed and the other end free, the free ends of these wires being deflectable by and adapted to latchably engage opposite barbs of-a striker.
The foregoing objects, advantages and'features of the invention will lbe apparent from the preferred illustrative embodiment particularly described below with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:
`FIGURE l is a fragmentary view of a motor Vehicle with portions of an engine compartment bonnet or hood and the fixed vehicle body members broken away to show the illustrative latch mechanism in side elevation;
FIGURE 2 is a plan View of the latch mechanism;
FIGURE 3 is .a fragmentary sectional view taken substantially in the plane of the line Ill-III in FIGUREV 1, omitting some parts for the sake of clarity; and
FIGURE 4 is a perspective View of the illustrative latch mechanism.
The drawings show a motor vehicle latch mechanism and striker according to the invention. The latch mechanisrn is attached to the hingeable engine compartment hood or bonnet 1 and abonnet-attached bracket 11 which mounts a pair of stilir but resilient wires 12, 14. These Wires are arranged side by side and form latch members, each having one end 12A and 14A fixed at 16 and 18 relative to the bracket and the other free at 12B and 14B so that they can be resiliently flexed about the fixture point. VThe wires 12 and 14 are mounted on the bracket 11 by being coiled about fixed pins 20 and 22, respectively. The adjacent extreme ends 24, 26 of the wires extend downwardly beyond the pins 29, 22 through slots in the bracket 11 and are bent laterally so that they press at 24A and 26A against a part 27 of a vehicle mounted striker plate 2S when the several members are in their hood closed latched positions as shown in the several drawing figures.
Between their extreme free ends 12B and 14B and their mounting pins and 22, the wires are spaced apart at 39 and 32 to form a gap sufficient for the entry of a striker head therebetween. the wires are preferably crossed at 36 and 36A. Flexying movement of the wires is guided adjacent the gap Vby a flat guide casing or frame 38 secured to the bracket 11. Both the guide casing and the bracket have aligned slots 4G to admit the striker head and allow it to pass through the latch spring gap.
rIlle striker assembly 34 includes the Vehicle-mounted striker plate 28 which-has an upwardlyV turned striker -ange 29. A second striker plate 42 is adjustably secured against the flange 29 to provide a two piece striker head of Spearhead shape having two opposite barbs 29A and 42A dimensioned so that when the striker head On each side of this gap,
3,186,746 Patented June 1, 11965 passes through the aligned bracket slots 40 into the gap between the wire latch Vmembers, it forces these wires Yapart until they snap behind the barbs and thus secure the bonnet. The barbs 29A and 42A may be assembled as shown in offset position'so that the wires snap behind them successively, not simultaneously. Thus, wire 12 acts as a main latch member and the other wire 14 acts as a safety latch member.
The extreme free ends 12B and 14B of the latch wires 112 and 14 are shaped conveniently for the lingers and are pinched together scissorwise to open the hood or bonnet. By reason of the crossing of the wires, such pinching spreads the striker engaging latch portions 30 and 32 of these wires to disengage the striker barbs 29A and 42A. When the wires are clear ofthe barbs, thefbonnet is initially urged upwardly by the depending spring ends 24 and 26 of the latch wires beyond potential latching engagement and can be subsequently lifted away from the striker.
From the foregoing description it will be seen that the preferred illustrative embodiment of the invention pro- Vides a relatively simple, economical latch mechanism achieving the several stated objectives and advantages. It will be further apparent that various modifications and changes might be made therein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined in the following claims.
1. A latch mechanism for a closure member mounted for movement relative to a support member, said latch mechanism comprising a pair of resilient elements secured to one of said members and having spaced latch portions cooperating to define a striker receiving gap extending substantially parallel to said one member, a striker secured to and extending fromV the other of said members substantially normal to the latch portions of said resilient element-s, said striker having a head with opposite barbs thereon adapted to enter said gap and transversely engageable with spaced latch portions upon movement of the closure member toward said support member to laterally deiiect said latch portions apart until said portions resiliently snap behind and latchably engage said barbs, and said resilient elements each having a spring portion resiliently engageable with said striker to maintain the latch portions of said spring elements in latching engagement with said striker barbs when said mem- -bers are in their latched position, and said spring portions being operable to bias said members apart upon release of said latch portions from latching engagement with said barbs.
2. A latch mechanism for a closure member movable between opened and closed positions relative to a support member, said latch mechanism comprising a pair of spaced parallel pins secured to one of said members, a pair -of resilient wires each having a coiled portion embracing one of said pins and having a free end portion extending therefrom, said free end portions'being laterally crossed adjacent said laterally spaced coiled portions and recrossed remotely therefrom to define a'striker receiving gap therebetween, striker means secured to the other of said members and including a head having two opposite barbs adapted to enter said gap normal to said free end wire portions upon movement of said closure member proximate said support member and to engage and laterally deflect said end wire portions apart until said wires snap behind and latchably engage said barbs, said opposite striker' barbs are adjustable in offset relation normal to the free end wire portions, and means forguiding lateral deflection of said gap dening wire portionsby said striker means so that the gap defining pors D Y tions of said wires successively and alternately snap behind said barbs. Y f
3. A latch mechanism for a closure member movable between openedA and closed positions relative to a support member, said latch mechanism comprising a pair of spaced parallel pins secured to one of said members, a pair of resilient wires each having a coiled portion embracing one of said pins and having a'free end portion extending therefrom, said free end'port-ions being later- =ally spaced to define a Vstriker receiving gap therebetween, and striker means secured to t-fheotherof said members and including a head having two opposite Vbarbs adapted to enter said gap normal to said free end Vwire portions upon movement of said closure member'proximate said support member and to engage and laterally deliect said end wire portions apartV until said wires rsnap behind and latchably engage said barbs, said resilient wires each having a second free endv portionVdepending from the to enter saidrgap normal to said free end wire portions upon movement of saidclosure member proximate said supportmember and to engage and laterally deiiect said Y lend wire portions apart until said wires snap behind and coiled portion thereof, said depending end portions be-` v ing resiliently engageable with said striker means to maintian said striker barbs :in latching engagement with the latch portions of said wires when said members are in their closed positions, said depending end portionsV biasn extending therefrom, saidrfree end'portions being laterlatchably engage said barbs, the gap detiningportions of said `wires be-ing crossed adjacent their free ends on the side of said gap remote from their pin mounted coil portions, said resilient wires each having a second free end portion depending from the coiled portion thereof and resiliently engageable with `said"'stril-ier.means when said members are in their closed proximate positions, said depending end portions'biasing the closed members to' maintain the latch portions of.` said' wires; in latching engagement with said striker .barbs and urging said members apart in an opening direction out of potential latching engagement upon Arelease of said latch wire portions from latching engagement with said barbs.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,596,735 s/26 spotz 292-19 x 2,333,465 ll/43 Claud-Mantle. 2,715,538 8/55 IanonisV. Y 2,832,620 4/58 De orlow 292-340 x FOREIGN PATENTS 1,181,268 1/59 France.
90,712 11/37 sweden.
M. HENSON WOOD, JR., Primary Examiner.