US 3205472 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
CONNECTOR Filed April 15, 1964 United States Patent 0 3,205,472 CONNECTOR John K. Shannon, 6504 43rd Ave, Kenosha, Wis. Filed Apr. 15, 1964-, Ser. No. 359,990 2 Claims. (Cl. 339-432) This application is a continuation-in-part of my application, Serial No. 306,202, filed September 3, 1963 and now abandoned. The invention of this application relates to a connector, and more particularly to a connector for wire cable, rods, tubes and the like.
The connector is especially adapted for use with a battery cable wherein various adapters of unique design, such as a terminal clamp, or a ground lug may be easily attached via said connector to the cable, or wherein the connector, by itself, may serve as the electrical ground connection when fastened to the automobile frame by threading it directly into a tapped hole of proper dimension on the frame.
In the past, many means have been employed to attach cables to battery terminal posts. Mostly a clamp structure is used. The clamp structure is either cast directly onto the end of the cable, or soldered or crimped with pressure, or secured by a second integral clamp having a plate and bolts which are tightened onto the end of the cable.
Similar means have been utilized to attach the cable to ground. Usually a lug or ground fitting is cast directly onto the other end of the cable, or soldered or crimped or clamped thereto.
Unfortunately, none of these means promote an attractive finished appearance nor are they conducive to custom-fitting. The insulation is generally short so that there is a bare length of cable adjacent the terminal clamp or ground lug which is subject to corrosion. Furthermore, the terminal clamp appears make-shift or overly bulky or complicated in structure. If cast or soldered to the end of the cable, factory methods are generally needed. This requires the manufacturer to select several optimum lengths of cable. The retailer, in turn, must stock all or a limited number of such lengths and hope that he has the proper length when cable is demanded of him. Obviously, this is undesirable from a merchandising standpoint.
An object of this invention is to provide a universal connector which binds tightly to the cable and which is useful for atiixing a terminal clamp or a ground lug to the cable ends.
Another object is to provide a connector of the above character which can be easily applied to cable using ordinary tools customarily found in garages, service stations and mechanics tool kits and without the need for elaborate machinery, jigs, presses or torches.
Still another object is to provide a connector which, after being fitted to the cable, presents a neat finished appearance and completely covers the strands of the cable so as to protect them against corrosion and contamination.
A further object is to provide a connector which permits the retailer to custom-fit the cable to the particular installation by selecting the optimum length of cable for said installation, applying the connector, and an appropriately designed terminal clamp and ground fitting.
A still further object is to provide a connector which eliminates the need for stocking a large variety of different length cable with different end fittings.
Another object is to provide a connector which has a finished appearance after installation.
Another object is to provide a connector which binds tightly around the cable and requires very little, if any, subsequent maintenance.
Another object is to provide a connector which may be used, by itself, with an appropriately threaded orifice in the frame of the automobile as a ground fitting, thereby permitting the elimination of the ground fitting or lug, and effecting an economy.
Other objects of the invention will in part be obvious and will in part appear hereinafter.
The invention accordingly comprises the features of construction, combination of elements, and arrangement of parts which will be exemplified in the construction hereinafter set forth, and the scope of the invention will be indicated in the claims.
For a fuller understanding of the nature and objects of the invention, reference should be had to the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a side elevational view, partly in section, illustrating the connector and the cable, in unassembled form, and a portion of an automobile structure to which the cable is to be secured.
FIG. 2 is a side elevational view, partly in section, showing the connector assembled upon a cable with a battery terminal clamp atfixed thereto.
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the cable, the connector, and the battery terminal clamp taken along line 3--3 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a side elevational view, partly in section, showing the connector assembled upon a cable with a ground lug atlixed thereto.
FIG. 5 is a crosssectional view of the bolt clamp of FIG. 2 taken along line 5-5.
FIG. 6 is a side view of the compression sleeve and cable before insertion into the threaded hole of the terminal clamp.
Similar reference characters refer to similar parts throughout the several views of the drawings.
Broadly, the connector of this invention, as best seen in FIG. 1, comprises a compression sleeve 10, having a diameter which will fit around the strands of wire cable 20 to which it is to be affixed. The sleeve contains annular forwardly slanted cable gripping teeth on its inner surface. Its outer surface has a tapered thread at one end with longitudinal slots 12 cut transversal to said thread. The opposite end 16 is polygonal shaped on the outside whereby ordinary tools, such as a wrench or a plier may be used to aifix the sleeve to a cable and to secure it to an adapter prior to installation on the vehicle.
More particularly, the connector of this invention comprises a longitudinally slotted compression sleeve 10. Its inner diameter is selected to fit around the strands of wire cable 20. The inner surface (see FIG. 1) has gripping teeth 50 which preferably slant forward to bite into the strands for a more positive grasp of said strands and a better electrical communication therewith. These teeth lock the cable against disengagement. The inner surface also preferably has a step 22 in its inner wall (see FIG. 4) removed from the cable grip tooth end to accommodate the insulation covering 24 of the cable. It may even be elliptical to accommodate fiat wire. The outer surface has a tapered threaded surface at one end. The taper is so designed that upon threading the connector into the hole of an adapter, the connector will fasten down upon the strands of the cable so as to tightly grip them at a point removed from the end (see FIG. 4) whereby an excellent mechanical and a good electrical connection is effected even as the connector is being tightened into the adaptor hole. The taper provides a bowed grip upon the strands which resists any pull-out of the cable from the connector.
A polygonal structure 16, such as a square or hexagonal configuration exists at the other end whereby ordinary tools customarily found in garages, service stations and the like may be used to assemble and afiix the cable and sleeve onto the adapter prior to installation in a vehicle.
A battery terminal clamp 26 or a ground lug 28, of unique, design, may be threaded uponthe connector 10. As seen in FIG. 2, the terminal clamp comprises a threaded substantially cylindrical female socket 30 and.
a bolt clamp 32, the thread of the socket fitting the thread of the connector. Likewise in FIG. 4, the ground lug comprises a threaded substantially cylindrical female socket 34, and a tab 36 with a bolt orifice 38 therein.
Reference is now made to FIG. 1 to describe the connector element in detail.
As shown therein, the connector comprises a tube or sleeve with longitudinal slots 12 extending over a major portion of its length. The number of slots is preferably four, although from two to eight may be employed. These slots are formed so that they will traverse the entire tapered and threaded end portion 14 of connector and preferably also the narrow neck or annular groove 39 on the body of the connector.
The connector is preferably made of brass, copper, steel, aluminum, magnesium or the like.
The connector also has a polygonal shaped end 16 which is preferably hexagonal although square or octagonal shapes may also be utilized, to permit manipulation of the connector with ordinary mechanics tools, such as wrenches, pliers and the like.
The inner diameter of the connector is selected so that it approximates the outer diameter of the wire strands of cable 20. It has annular cable gripping teeth 50 to more positively grasp the strands of the cable. The depth of these teeth are selected to effect a gripping action with minimal deformation of or cutting into the strands of the cable. The inner surface also preferably has a step 22, at its polygonal shaped end, to receive the insulation covering 24 of the cable (see FIG. 2).
To aflix the connector upon a cable, one need merely strip back the insulation 24, a sufficient length, to accommodate the length of the connector 10. The sleeve is then slipped onto the exposed strands and the resultant combination is ready for receiving an adapter or for direct installation into a threaded hole 40.
Such an installation might be a ground connection which comprises a drilled and threaded hole 40 in the chassis 42 of an automobile.
As the connector 10 is threaded into the adapter or hole 40, the taper of its threaded end 14 causes the sleeve to tightly clamp upon the wire strands of the cable 20 at a point removed from the end of the strands (see FIGS. 2 and 4). Such unique clamping action is the result of the taper of the threaded end moving into the. threaded substantially cylindrical orifice. At first, the forward end of connector 10 engages the threads of the adapter or hole 40. Then, as the connector is screwed into the hole (see FIGS. 1 and 4), the intermediate surfaces of the tapered end of the connector bear against the threads and take up the compressive force of the encircling adapter or hole 40. Meanwhile, the resiliency of the connector, specifically, the slotted forward end combined with the action of annular groove 39, causes the forward end thereof, now inserted to a greater depth within the adapter or hole 40, to spring outwardly. When the connector is fully threaded in the home position (FIG. 4), a bow-like configuration is assumed by each element of the slotted end, hence the grip at a point removed from the end. Any attempt or. tendency of the cable to slip out of the connector is thereafter completely resisted since the strands would have to swage themselves into a thinner diameter to pass through the restricted throat of the tightened connector. Also, teeth 50 clamp down slightly into the strands but do not cut into them to deleteriously affect the conductivity of each strand. A substantially integral mechanical and electrical bond is thereby effected. Furthermore, existence of step 22 of the connector to receive the end of insulation 24, effects a complete enshrouding of the wire strands to thereafter protect them from corrosive atmospheres. A very neat, simple and useful connecting means is thereby provided.
The threaded end 14 of the connector 10 may also receive a battery clamp of unique design (see FIG. 2). Such a clamp consists of a threaded female socket 30 integrally aflixed to a bolt clamp 32. If desired, the bolt clamp 32 may have a slanting terminal hole 46 to provide a biting grip upon the'battery terminal when clamped thereon. (See FIG. 5).
Usually, the connector is first threaded into the female socket 30 of the battery clamp, "and tightened, and then the bolt clamp 32 is secured to the battery terminal by tightening the bolt and nut 44 of the clamp.
FIGS. 2 to 4 illustrate the result of tightening the connector 10 into the female socket 30. As seen, an integral-like mechanical and electrical bond between the wire strands of the cable and the clamp 26 is effected. There is no possibility of pull-out of the cable since the restricted throat 52 would require a swaging down of the diameter of the strands. This is virtually impossible under most circumstances. So, in essence an integral connection is provided which substantially eliminates any need for continued maintenance. Any vibration or movement of the cable has very little, if any, effect upon the connection once made.
The threaded end of the connector 10 may also receive a uniquely designed ground lug. Here again, such application merely requires threading the female socket end 34, preferably tapered, of lug 28 onto the connector utilizing the common open end wrench or pliers customarily found in a mechanics tool box. The socket 34, if tapered,
is tapered to a degree substantially less than that of sleeve 10 so that it is in effect substantially cylindrical as shown in FIG. 4. Tab 36 of the lug may then be afiixed to the automobile body or frame by placing bolt hole 38 upon any bolt in the automobile and tightening the nut of the bolt. Again, an intimate mechanical and electrical connection is made.
It should be evident from the detailed description above that custom assembly of a battery cable is now possible. There is no need for the retailer to stock various lengths of finished battery cable. He need merely inventory a roll of cable and have a supply of connectors, terminal clamp, and ground lug adapters on hand. When such an item is called for, he simply cuts a desired length of cable, strips off the insulation at both ends, applies, connectors, and then applies a battery terminal clamp and a ground lug, or, if the automobile frame already has a ground hole 40 therein, such as in FIG. 1, the connector is used, as is. If the latter, he threads the cable via said connector to the ground hole 40 and then applies the battery terminal clamp 26 to the battery. If the former, he merely applies the clamp 26 to the battery and the lug 28 to a bolt and nut, such as found on the motor block or head. Obviously, with this structure, there is very little wasted cable. Another feature is the reduction in inventory and the universalization of battery cable for all automobiles. Furthermore, the most inexperienced can make and apply such cable in various installations.
FIGS. 2 and 6 illustrate the attractive neat appearance attained by the connectorwith the battery terminal clamp or ground lug. Such neatness is, indeed, functional, in that the wire strands of cable 24 are protected over their full length. Thus they are protected from corrosion and/ or contamination.
It will thus be seen that the objects set forth above, among those made apparent from the preceding description, are etficiently attained and, since certain changes may be made in the above article without departing from the scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
Now that the invention has been described, what is claimed as new and desired to be secured by Letters Patent is:
What is claimed is:
1. A connector and adapter whereby one end of a cable may be adapted for aflixing said cable to ground connection means comprising a compression sleeve having an inner diameter slightly larger than the bundle of wire strands within said battery cable, gripping teeth on the inner surface of said sleeve at one end, a threaded outer surface at said end tapering toward said end, and an outer polygonal surface on the opposite end, said threaded outer surface and said polygonal surface being separated by an outer annular groove, a plurality of slots extending longitudinally from said threaded end into said annular groove whereby the resiliency of the longitudinally slotted threaded end of said connector is increased, and an adapter comprising a substantially cylindrical female socket threaded on the inside so as to fit upon said outer threaded surface of said connector and having an inner diameter of a dimension whereby said connector will be clamped upon said cable with a tighter grip at a point removed from the ends of said cable, said socket being integrally secured to a tab having a bolt hole therein for attachment to said ground connecting means.
2. A connector and adapter whereby one end of a cable may be adapted for afiixing said cable to a battery terminal comprising a compression sleeve having an inner diameter slightly larger than the bundle of wire strands within said battery cable to which it is to be secured, gripping teeth on the inner surface of said sleeve at one end, a threaded outer surface at said end tapering toward said end, and an outer polygonal surface on the opposite end, said threaded outer surface and said polygonal surface being separated by an outer annular groove, a plurality of slots extending longitudinally from said threaded end into said annular groove whereby the resiliency of the longitudinally slotted threaded end of said connector is increased, and an adapter comprising a substantially cylindrical female socket threaded on the inside so as to fit upon said tapered outer threaded surface of said compression sleeve and having an inner diameter of a dimension whereby said connector will be clamped upon said cable with a tighter grip at a point removed from the ends of said cable, said socket being integrally secured to a bolt clamp of a dimension capable of fitting upon and being bolted to said battery terminal.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,650,064 11/27 Dennis 339268 1,756,445 4/30 Walde 339230 1,770,748 7/30 Dawson et al. 339268 1,858,288 5/32 Terrell et al 339--230 2,295,899 9/42 Hoppenstand 339268 2,341,970 2/44 Worel 24124 2,479,834 8/49 Herbert 339-224 FOREIGN PATENTS 765,006 3/34 France.
772,971 8/34 France.
773,203 8/ 34 France. 1,035,300 4/53 France.
JOSEPH D. SEERS, Primary Examiner.