US 3241097 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 15, l fi H. EGE TERMINAL FOR LAMP socxm TERMINAL BLOCK Filed Feb. 27, 1963 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR. Hans E e M 5 Czowwei, ham? and Wade n1 March 15, was H. EGE
TERMINAL FOR LAMP SOCKET TERMINAL BLOCK 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Feb. 27 1963 m m w m @ww, 15 eufmad 74(4 zde rb Arro/zA/Evs H. :GE 3,241,091
TERMINAL FOR LAMP SOCKET TERMINAL BLOCK March 15, as
Filed Feb. 27, 1965 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 INVENTOR. Hans Eg 21 BY N Z7 fimmjj awm Madam,
v Arroeuevs United States Patent 3,241,097 TERMIYAL FOR LAMP SOCKET TERMINAL BLOCK Hans Ege, Chicago, Ill., assignor, by mesne assignments, to Underwriters Safety Device (10., Chicago, 111., a corporation of Illinois Filed Feb. 27, 1963, Ser. No. 261,340 4 Claims. (Cl. 339198) This invention relates to a new and improved terminal means incorporating electrical and mechanical connection features permitting the ready operative mounting of two initially separate portions thereof in an insulating structure such as a terminal block.
Terminal blocks of the multiple-lead, ready-disconnect type are widely used in different environments to permit efiicient and variable multiple-lead interconnection for power distribution from a localized area. In their more prevalent forms such blocks include tab-like connection means which frictionally receive thereabout wire lead connectors in the form of sliding grippers. Multiple tabs are electrically interconnected within the block thus permitting variable interconnection of multiple leads in a ready and efiicient manner without the necessity of making permanent connections such as by lead soldering or the like. Furthermore, these blocks permit ready variation and maintenance or the electrical circuits utilizing the block as a junction.
Blocks of the type described include certain limitations in use as they are not readily adapted to permit different types of lead connection which do not utilize the combination of a tab and slide gripper connector. While the soldered permanent-type connection is preferably avoided, in certain installations it is desirable to accommodate bare-wire lead connection involving the clamping of a bare-wire end. Terminal means designed for bare-wire lead connection are not readily adapted for electrically and mechanically combined use with tab-like terminal means. Attempts to combine dissimilar types of terminal means result in manufacture and assembly complexities.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a new and improved terminal block including special terminal means, the block and terminal means being especially adapted for lamp-socket attachment for power supply to the socket and power distribution therefrom, the block including uniquely mounted and arranged bare wire lead connection portions forming a part of the special terminal means thereof.
A further object is to provide a new and improved terminal block including as a part thereof unique twopiece terminal means specially adapted for dissimilar wire lead interconnection.
Another object is to provide a new and improved terminal means of generally two-piece construction and adapted for terminal block mounting for multiple-lead inter-connection through the block, the two portions of the terminal means including uniquely arranged and cooperating electrical and mechanical interconnection means permitting ready assembly of the portions and etficient functioning thereof in a block.
Other objects not specifically set forth will become apparent from the following detailed description of the invention made in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a fragmentary side elevation of a lamp mounted in a lamp socket to which one form of the tenninal block of the present invention is operatively attached;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged inner end face view of the terminal block as viewed generally along line 22 in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a vertical section of the terminal block as viewed generally along line 33 in FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary bottom corner view of a por- 3,241,097 Patented Mar. 15, 1966 tion of the block in end elevation as viewed generally along line 44 in FIG. 2;
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary longitudinal section of one form of terminal means of the block taken generally along line 55 in FIG. 2;
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary transverse section of the terminal means taken generally along line 66 in FIG. 2;
FIG. 7 is an outer end face perspective of the terminal block and the lamp socket attached thereto;
FIG. 8 is a partly sectioned outer face view of a terminal means of the block as viewed generally along line 88 in FIG. 7;
FIG. 9 is an exploded fragmentary and partly sectioned perspective of a terminal means of the block;
FIG. 10 is an exploded fragmentary and partly sectioned perspective of another form of terminal means forming a part of the block; and
FIG. 11 is an exploded perspective of a portion of the terminal means of FIG. 9 as viewed from the opposite end thereof.
FIG. 1 illustrates one form of terminal block 11 especially adapted for improvement by the incorporation of the terminal means of the present invention. The block has operatively mounted therein a known type of lamp socket 12 which receives therein the base of a known type of lamp 13 which may be a mercury arc lamp used in outdoor illumination such as street lighting or the like. The lamp socket 12 may be formed from porcelain or other suitable insulating material and includes a socket portion 14 receiving the base of the lamp 13 therein by means of cooperating threads (not shown) or the like. The base of the lamp socket 12 is formed with suitable apertures 15 receiving therethrough screw fasteners 16 attaching the lamp socket to the terminal block 11. The outer exposed surface of the base of the lamp socket 12 has attached thereto wire lead terminals 17 (FIG. 7) of known type through which power supplied to the lamp 13 to operate the same.
As best shown in FIGS. 2 and 7, the terminal block 11 is of annular shape having a body 18 formed from insulating material such as molded plastic. The body 18 is formed with a central socket mounting area 19 of generally circular configuration with a pair of oppositely positioned and inwardly projecting socket attachment lugs 20. The lugs include internally threaded sleeves 21 extending through axially directed apertures and into which the screw fasteners 16 are threadedly received in attaching the lamp socket 12 to the terminal block. An alternative oppositely positioned pair of smooth apertures 22 may also form a part of the lugs 20 to accommodate the use of different types of fasteners available for use with the lamp socket 12.
The terminal block 11 is formed with an outer fiat end face 23 and an inner grooved or recessed end face 24 with a plurality of axially outwardly projecting terminal means being carried thereby. In the form illustrated, the block 11 includes two generally distinct types of terminal means 25 and 26. These terminal means are annularly arranged about the lamp socket attachment area 19 in at least partially surrounding, circumferentially spaced relation. The inner face 24 of the body 18 is formed with a plurality of axially outwardly projecting wall sections 27 which effectively isolate and shield the terminal means 25 from one another and from the terminal means 26. The wall sections 27 which are immediately adjacent the terminal means 25 cooperate to define with the intermediate portions of the inner face 24 radially outwardly opening groove-like areas 28 through which bare wire leads are adapted to be received for connection with the terminal means in a manner to be described. As shown in FIG. 7, the outer end face 23 is generally fiat and the portions of the terminal means 25 and 26 projecting therefrom are 3 merely spaced from one another, these portions being in the form of flat tabs.
FIGS. 3 and illustrate in detail the tab-like terminal means 26 and the mounting thereof in the body 18. Each :erminal means 26 includes a fiat plate-like connector 29 formed with oppositely directed end tabs 30 and a pair of intermediate, outwardly projecting, step-like shoulder portions 31 and 32 located along opposite side edges. The JOdY 18 in a direction from the outer end face 23 thereof s formed with a generally rectangular opening 33 ex- :ending axially therethrough and communicating with an :nlarged generally rectangular recess 34 formed in the nner end face 24. The opening 33 along opposite side nargins thereof is formed with slots 35 which receive :herein the outer side margins of the connector 29 located aetween the stepped shoulders 31 and 32. The outer :nds of the slots 35 are formed with slot enlargements 36 :ommunicating with the outer end face 23 and in which :he shoulders 32 of the connector 29 are snugly received. Fhis arrangement limits the extent to which the coniector 29 can move or be inserted through the body 18 in 1 direction toward the inner end face 24 thereof. Fixing )f the connector 29 in its slots 35 may be brought about Jy the swedging of the outer corner portions of the thoulders 31 in an outward direction to cause embedding lhereof in the material of the block as shown in FIG. 3. With this arrangement the opposite end tab portions 30 of he connector 29 are exposed along opposited end faces of :he block 11 for ready connection with wire leads utilizing :lide grip connectors 37 of well-known type as shown in FIG. 7. In view of the special configuration of the inner :nd face 24 of the block 11 including the wall sections 27, :he portion of the molding die plate may also be designed to provide intervening short wall sections 38 between the :erminal means 26. The longer wall sections 27 eifeclively surround the terminal means 26 to prevent inadlertent lead contact therewith when a lead is being introiuced into the block 11 for connection with one of the )ther terminal means 25 as will be described in greater de- :ail.
FIGS. 46, 8, 9 and 11 illustrate in detail the new and mproved form of terminal means 25 constituting a part )f the invention. As best shown in FIG. 9, the terminal neans 25 is basically of two-piece construction including 1 bare-wire lead-clamping portion 39 and a disconnect ead tab portion 40. The clamping portion 39 is of gen- :rally rectangular, open ended design including an inernally threaded aperture 41 in the top portion thereof and an internally threaded aperture 42 in the base portion hereof. The aperture 42 extends outwardly below the Jase portion as defined by a projecting internally threaded :ollar 43. The clamping portion 39 also includes a lead icrew fastener 44 which is threadedly received through :he aperture 41 and is arranged to clamp the bare end of 3. lead against the base portion in power conducting con- :act therewith. A suitable well-known type of wing- :lamping plate 45 (FIGS. 4 and 5) may be received in :he clamping portion 39 and operated downwardly by the ;crew 44 to clamp the bare end of a wire lead against the Jase portion.
The tab portion 40 of the terminal means 25 is of onepiece construction being readily stamped out from a flat piece of metal. The tab portion includes a flat base porion 46 which at opposite ends thereof has integrally formed therewith depending locking tongues 47 The base )ortion is centrally apertured with the aperture being deined by an outwardly projecting collar 48 which may be )f generally conical shape by reason of being punched :rom the material of the base portion. Opposite side nargins of the base portion 46 have integrally formed :herewith pairs of upwardly and outwardly projecting tabs 19 arranged in longitudinally and transversely spaced rela- ;ion. The terminal means 25 is completed by the provision of a fastener 50, which preferably is in the form of a flat-head screw, used in interconnecting the portions 39 and 40 in a manner to be described.
Each area of the body 18 in which a terminal means 25 is operatively mounted is formed with an outer end face recess 51 (see FIG. 11) which is of generally rectangular shape to receive the base portion 46 of the tab portion 40 in seated relation. Opposite ends of the recess 51 include transverse slots 52 which extend through the portion of the body and which are adapted to receive therein the position fixing tongues 47 of the lead portion 40. The recess 51 centrally thereof is provided with an aperture 53 extending axially through the body 18 and formed with appropriate enlarged and reduced annular shoulder portions to provide for positive end abutment between the collars 43 and 48 of the pieces of the terminal means. The inner end face 24 of the body 18 immediately surrounding the aperture 53 is formed with a rectangular recess 54 between the wall sections 27 to receive the base of the clamping portion 39 therein with the collar 43 inserted through the aperture 53. A transverse block-like rib 55 defines the innermost end of the recess 54 to provide positive positioning means to properly locate the clamping portion 39 during assembly of the terminal means with the terminal block.
FIGS. 5 and 6 best illustrate the assembled terminal means 25. The collars 43 and 48 are received in the body aperture 53 in end abutting relation and the fastener 50 is inserted through the collar 48 and threadedly advanced in the aperture 42 of the clamping portion 39 to provide for tight clamping of the two portions in electrical and mechanical interconnection. The preferred provision of the various grooves or recesses about the aperture 53 provides for ready and positive centering alignment of the portions 39 and 40 to permit proper interconnection. The fastener 50 is readily inserted through the collar 48 and the slot-ted head thereof is readily available between the tabs 49 for tool engagement therewith and tight fastening of the portions 39 and 40.
With the structural arrangement described, the fastener 50 may be formed from hard steel which is not ordinarily used for purposes of establishing the most efiicient elec trical connection. The fastener need not be relied upon to establish the electrical connection in view of the special end abutment established and maintained between the cooperating collars 43 and 48. This contact establishes the main electrical connection while additionally mechanically stabilizing and strengthening the terminal means. Thus a fastener 50 formed from harder material and capable of more readily withstanding damage during assembly of the terminal block may be used without reducing the effectiveness of the electrical connection obtained between the dissimilar portions of the terminal means. This simple method of interconnection further permits efficient and economical use of two dissimilar types of lead connectors or terminal means as a single unit.
The tab portion 40 of each terminal means 25' is rigidly fixed along the outer end face 23 of the body 18 by reason of the base portion 46 thereof being flatly engaged with the base of the recess 51, and further by reason of the tongues 47 being received in the slots 52. Additionally, the location of the head portion of the fastener 50 in engagement with the base portion 46 permits tight clamping of the tab portion 40 against the body 18. This particular arrangement avoids interference of the larger area head portion of the fastener with the electrical contact of the bare-wire lead with the base of the clamping portion 39, particularly where the fastener 50 is formed from low conduction material. In this respect the threaded shank portion of the fastener 50 should not project into the interior of the clamping portion 39.
In considering possible uses of the illustrated form of terminal block 11 and special terminal means thereof which constitutes the basic aspect of the invention, it will be understood that each clamping portion 39 of a terminal means 25 is used to connect the bare end of a wire lead in the well known manner. However, bare-wire lead insertion and proper connection is controlled by the provision of the vertical wall sections 27 and the defining of the lead insertion groove-like areas 28 in the inner end face 24 of the body 18. FIGS. 2 and 4 best illustrate the guarded approach available to each clamping portion 39 of a terminal means 25. The wall sections 27 prevent inadvertent contact between a bare-wire lead and the other terminal means forming a part of the block, this being of particular importance in the event that hot connections already exist through at least some of the terminal means. Thus, inadvertent shorting of the circuits of the block is prevented. Additionally, the wall sections 27 provide electrical shielding means between relatively high and low voltage lines. The terminals 25 are designed to provide the main power connections for the block and the clamping portions 39 may receive leads handling voltages of as much as 220 volts. Under such conditions three of the terminal means 25 would be utilized. The remaining terminal means 25 may be used to supply power to an additional terminal block or light socket through appropriate connections between the tabs 49 of the respective terminal means 25.
Power distribution to a limited extent is illustrated in FIG. 7. Assuming that the two lowermost terminal means 25 as viewed in FIG. 7 are in the main power circuit, suitable leads 56 extend from respective tabs of the terminal means into connection with the connectors 17 of the tube socket 12. The tab-connecting ends of the leads 56 carry well-known slide gripper connectors 37 frictionally received on the tabs 49. The lead 57 is illustrative of a power take-off lead attached to one of the terminal means 25 and extending from the block 11 for attachment to another block for operation of another lamp or the like. In this respect it will be understood that the power supplied to another similar terminal block may be taken off directly from the associated tabs 49 of the power terminal means for direct operation of the lamp associated with the other block. In other words, it is necessary merely to supply the power-input bare-wire leads to a single terminal block and thereafter take off adequate power for the operation of a series of lamps from the first block itself.
The terminal means 26 may be used in any suitable manner for power take-off purposes and/ or for operation of lamp accessories, such as ballast or the like, under different voltage conditions. Similar leads including slide gripper connectors 37 supply power to the terminal means 26 and permit power take-off therefrom for operation of remote or separate devices.
Obviously certain modifications and variations of the invention as hereinbefore set forth may be made without departing from the spirit and scope thereof, and therefore only such limitations should be imposed as are indicated in the appended claims.
1. In a terminal block adapted for power connection and distribution wherein said block mounts a plurality of spaced terminal means and at least some of said terminal means extend through said block and are formed with lead-connection portions projecting from opposite end faces of said block, the improvement comprising at least one of said terminal means being of two-piece construction including a bare-wire lead-clamping portion exposed along one end face of said block and a slide grip lead tab portion exposed along the opposite end face of said block,
each portion of said two-piece terminal means having a relatively flat base mounted along respective end faces of said block in spaced relation to one another, each base including an aperture defined by outwardly projecting collar means received in an aligned aperture through said block, with collar means of said bases being in end abutment with one another to establish electrical connection between the portions of said two-piece terminal means, and fastener means received through the collar means of said bases to maintain said abutment of said collar means and electrical interconnection between said portions, said collar means in end abutting relation being of sufficient axial length to at least substantially confine said fastener means therein.
2. In the terminal block of claim 1 wherein said disconnect lead tab portion is provided with at least one tab formed integrally with the base thereof and projecting outwardly from said base.
3. In the terminal block of claim 1 wherein said disconnect lead tab portion is provided with at least one tab formed integrally with the base thereof and projecting outwardly from said base, said base having at least one integral position-fixing tongue inserted in said block to anchor said tab portion.
4. In a terminal block adapted for power connection and distribution wherein said block mounts a plurality of spaced terminal means and at least some of said terminal means extend through said block and are formed with leadwonnection portions projecting from opposite end faces of said block, the improvement comprising at least one of said terminal means being of two-piece construction including a bare-wire lead clamping portion exposed along one end face of said block and a slide grip lead tab portion exposed along the opposite end face of said block, each portion of said two-piece terminal means having a relatively flat base mounted along respective end faces of said block in spaced relation to one another, each base including an aperture defined by outwardly projecting collar means received in an aligned aperture through said block, the collar means of said bases being in end abutment with one another to establish electrical connection between the portions of said two-piece terminal means, and single-head screw-fastener means received through the collar means of said bases to maintain said abutment of said collar means and electrical interconnection between said portions, said fastener means lzeing received through said collar means in a direction to engage the single head thereof with the base of said. slide grip lead tab portion, the combined axial length of said collar means confining the remainder of said fastener means therein, each bare wire lead clamping portion including adjustable clamping means arranged to clamp a lead against the base of said portion adjacent the aperture therein.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,403,642 7/1946 Draxler 310-71 2,414,422 l/1947 Smith et a1. 339-150 2,905,923 9/1959 Hammerly 339-498 2,991,444 7/1961 Brereton 339198 3,015,687 1/1962 Ruscito 339126 X 3,020,515 2/1962 Hammerly 33931 X JOSEPH D. SEERS, Primary Examiner.
ALBERT H. KAMPE, Examiner.