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Publication numberUS3325769 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 13, 1967
Filing dateSep 25, 1964
Priority dateSep 25, 1964
Publication numberUS 3325769 A, US 3325769A, US-A-3325769, US3325769 A, US3325769A
InventorsLawrence R Travis
Original AssigneeRogers Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Separable electrical circuit assembly
US 3325769 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 13, 1967 R. TRAVIS 3,325,769

SEPARABLE ELECTRICAL CIRCUIT ASSEMBLY Filed Sept. 25, 1964 |o=:i+ I2 l I I I II I I lZg g g :4

7? r I V U 2e 24 22 f FIG-4.

I FIG] FIG.6- Ll 30 INVENTOR 44 Lawrence R. Travis United States Patent 3,325,769 SEPARABLE ELECTRICAL CIRCUIT ASSEMBLY Lawrence R. Travis, Pitcairn, Pa.', assignor, by mesne assignments, to Rogers Corporation, a corporation of Massachusetts Filed Sept. 25, 1964, Ser. No. 399,217 Claims. (Cl. 339-176) The present invention relates to electrical circuit assemblies for the termination and connection of electrical conductors, and more particularly to electrical circuit assemblies for use with flat flexible electrical connection conductors.

Flat flexible cables in which a number of usually flat conductors are'disposed and bonded between suitable plastic insulating materials may be used to advantage in a great number of applications. One of the problems of utilizing such flat flexible cables is that of providing suitable connection or termination of the cable to other electrical circuitry. A simple, economical, and reliable electrical termination system has been disclosed in copending application Ser. No. 352,156, filed Mar. 16, 1964, and assigned to the same assignee as the present application, which adequately solves the termination problems usually associated with flexible cables.

The most common situation for termination of a flat flexible cable is to have a unitary connector at the end thereof which fits into a mating receptacle. In certain situations it would be highly advantageous to have the capability of providing a multiple connector assembly in which various of the individual conductors with the associated contacts are available for connection at different receptacle areas. Thus, by such an assembly, conductors, one or more, would have their separate connectors available for connection at a given receptacle area, while other conductors, with their associated connectors, could be provided at other connecting areas.

It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a new and improved connector assembly utilizing a readily adaptable connector or terminating device.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a new and improved connector assembly utilizing a connecting or terminating device which may be readily separated for different circuit applications.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a new and improved connector assembly for use with flat flexible cable in which a connecting or terminating device is utilized which is readily separable to provide separate connectors for the various conductors of the cable.

Broadly, the above cited objects are accomplished by providing electrical connector assembly for use with flexible cable by providing a formed termination or connector member which is frangible to permit the ready separation of one or more of the conductors.

These and other objects and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent when considered in view of the following specification and drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is a plan view of flat flexible cable as utilized herein;

FIGURE 2 is a front elevation view of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 3 is a plan view of the mandrel as used herein;

FIGURE 4 is a front elevation view of FIGURE 3;

FIGURE 5 is a side elevation view of FIGURE 3;

FIGURE 6 is a plan view of the connector member as utilized herein;

FIGURE 7 is a side elevation view of FIGURE 6;

FIGURE 8 is an enlarged view of one of the broken away contact connector members of FIGURE 7;

3,325,769 Patented June 13, 1967 FIGURE 9 is a three-dimensional view of the connector assembly as provided herein showing various conductor members separated to provide individual contact members, and

FIGURE 10 is a three-dimensional view of another form of the present invention;

Referring to FIGURES 1 and 2, a section of flat flexible cable is shown having a plurality of elongated electrical conductors 10 sandwiched between two electrically insulating layers 12 and 14. The conductors 10, for example, may have a rectangular cross section as shown and comprise copper. One or both of the insulating layers 12 and 14 may, for instance, comprise a film of an aromatic polyirnide or aromatic polyimide-imide resin. To secure and bond the conductors 10 between the layers 12 and 14, a flexible epoxy adhesive may be used. For further details as to the process and materials used in the fabrication of the flexible cable reference is made to the above copending application.

Between the conductors 10 are insulating portions 16, which are parallel to the conductors 10 and thus separate the conductors 10 so as to provide separate electrical circuits through each of the conductors. Slits 18 may be cut back a predetermined distance into the insulating channel 16 from the end 20 of the flexible cable. The slits 18 permit the separating of the various individual conductors 10 at the end 20 as will be described below.

In FIGURES 3, 4 and 5, a mandrel 22 is shown about which one end of the flexible cable is wrapped. The flexible cable is secured about the mandrel with, for example, a suitable epoxy resin. The mandrel 22 includes a plurality of flat portions 24 which correspond to the respective conductors 10 of the flexible cable and over which the conductors 10 are placed. Between the flat portions 24 are web portions 26 which have a thin cross sectional area. The mandrel 22 may comprise a plastic insulating material. The web portions 26 are designed to have a thin cross section so as to be frangible so that the various flat portions 24 may be separated by the breaking of the web portion 26. The web portions 26 need only be thick enough to permit the flowing of the plastic material during its molding process. With the conductors 10 of the flexible cable fitting over the flat portions 24 of the mandrel 22 and the insulating channels 18 fitting over the frangible web portions 26 and the cable secured to the mandrel, the cable is ready for molding into a connector or termination member 28 which is shown in FIGURES 6 and 7.

Referring to these figures, a formed connector or termination member 28 is shown which may comprise a plastic insulating material and which is molded directly over the mandrel 22 after the cable has been secured to the mandrel. The connector member 28 comprises a plurality of contact receiving portions 30 which are connected by a plurality of frangible tab portions 32. The termination member 28 also has an optimal raised back portion 34, better seen in FIG. 7, which serves as a means for gripping the connector member 28 for inserting or with drawing it from another connector or for mounting of an interfacial seal. In each of the contact receiving portions of the termination member 28, a contact opening 36 is provided. The contact receiving portions and openings 36 therein are so aligned to be in position over the respective conductors 10 of the cable.

After the formed termination member has been molded directly over the mandrel 22 with the cable secured thereto, the insulation appearing on the outside of the insulating film layer 12 is removed by a chemical process. The areas exposed by the contact openings 36 establish contact areas. These contact areas are then electroplated, for example with gold, to provide a good electrical contact structure 38 as is well known in the art. The chemical removal and electroplating processes are discussed in the above copending application. FIGURE 8 shows the contact structure 38 appearing through an opening 36 with the molded connector member 28 fitting therearound to provide a one piece connector and contact assembly. A locking lug 40 is molded into the termination member 28 so that a locking structure may be fitted over the lug 40 when a secure connector is desired or for the utilization of an adapter connector. I

The frangible tab portions 32 of the formed connector member 28 are disposed over the Web portions 26 of the mandrel 22. The tab portions 32 are so molded as to have 'a cross section thin enough only to permit the plastic insulating material to flow therethrough during the molding process. Using such a thin web tab portion thus permits the ready breaking through of the insulating material thereof to easily separate the various contact receiving portions 30 of the termination member 28.

In order to provide a single conductor and connector member, as shown in FIGURE 8, it is only necessary to break through the tab portions 32 of the connector member 28 and through the frangible web portions 26 of the mandrel 22. This could be easily done since, as described above, the web and tab portions are designed to be relatively thin to permit such separation. The slits 18, see FIGURE 1, would then serve to permit such separation of one of the conductors with its associated connector member 28 to any desired length. Each separated connector would have its own contact portion 38 which would appear through the contact opening 36 to permit connection to various electrical fixtures.

FIGURE 9 shows a flexible cable assembly in which three connector members 42, 44 and 46 are shown broken from an original unitary structure. The three connectors 42, 44 and 46 are broken from a unitary connector member to provide, respectively, a one contact, a two contact, and a three contact connector structure. The flexible cable is shown slit back away from the connectors 42, 44 and 46 so that these connectors may be inserted into various female receptacles. A unitary connector member 50, which maybe an unbroken member fabricated as described herein, is shown connected to the other end of the flexible cable.

In FIG. 10 is shown another form of the connector assembly as taught herein. The connector assembly as shown takes the form of a female assembly with a contact structure 58 appearing within a contact receiving structure 60 which as aperture 62 therein for receiving a male connector. A frangible web member 64 connects adjoining contact receiving members and permits the ready separation of the various contacts as described above.

It can, thus, be seen by such an assembly that a readily adaptable flexible cable connector assembly is provided which may be used in a great variety of situations and may easily be changed to accommodate a great number of circuit applications. Also it should be noted that the various individual contact elements could be cut or sawed apart after the assembly has been fabricated, if made necessary by the use of thicker areas between the conductors.

Although the present invention has been described with a certain degree of particularity, it should be understood that the present disclosure has been made only by way of example and that numerous changes in the details of constructure, fabrication and the combination and arrangement of parts, elements and materials may be resorted to without departing from the scope and spirit of the present invention.

I claim:'

therein comprising, a mandrel about which a portion of 'said cable is disposed, said mandrel including a plurality of frangible web portions, a termination member to encapsulate said mandrel, said termination member including'a plurality of frangible tab portions, each of said tab said mandrel so that said mandrel and said termination member may be easily broken apart.

2. An electrical connector assembly for use with flat flexible cable having a plurality of conductors disposed therein comprising, a mandrel about which an end portion of said cable is disposed, said mandrel including a plurality of frangible web portions disposed between said flat portions, a molded termination member to encapsulate said mandrel, said molded member including a plurality of contact receiving portions disposed over the corresponding conductors of said cable, and a frangible tab portion connecting said contact receiving portions, each of said tab portions corresponding with one of said web portions of said mandrel so that said mandrel and said molded member may be easily broken apart at the web and tab portions respectively to provide a number of separate contact terminations.

3. An electrical connector assembly for use with flat flexible cable having a plurality of conductors disposed therein comprising, a mandrel about which an end portion of said cable is disposed, said mandrel including a pluraltiy of substantially flat portions over which the conductors of said cable are disposed and a plurality of frangible web portions disposed between said flat portions, a molded termination member to encapsulate said mandrel, said molded member including a plurality of contact receiving portions disposed over the corresponding conductors of said cable, said contact receiving portions having a contact opening therein through which a portion of the corresponding conductor appears for contact purposes, and a plurality of frangible tab portions connecting said contact receiving portions, each of said tab portions corresponding with one of said web portions of said mandrel so that said mandrel and said molded member may be easily broken apart at the web and tab portions respectively to provide a number of separate contact terminations. 7

4. An electrical connector assembly for use with flat flexible cable having a plurality of conductors dis-posed therein comprising, a mandrel about which portion of said cable is secured, said mandrel including a plurality of substantially flat portions over which the conductors of said cable are disposed and a plurality of web portions disposed between said flat portions, said web portions being relatively thin compared to said flat portions, a formed termination member molded over said mandrel, said formed member including a plurality of contact receiving portions disposed over the corresponding conductors of said cable, said contact receiving portions having a contact opening therein through which a portion of the corresponding conductor appears for contact purposes, and a plurality of tab portions connecting said contact receiving portions, said tab portions being relatively thin compared to said contact receiving portions, each of said tab portions corresponding with one of said web portions of said mandrel so that said mandrel and said formed member may be easily broken apart at the web and tab portions respectively.

5. An electrical connector assembly for use with flat flexible cable having a plurality of conductors disposed therein comprising, a multi-section mandrel comprising an insulating material about which a portion of said cable is secured, said mandrel including a plurality of substantially flat portions over which the conductors of said cable are disposed and a plurality of frangible web portions disposed between said flat portions, a multi-section formed termination member comprising an insulating material molded about said mandrel to encapsulate said mandrel, said formed member including a plurality of contact receiving portions disposed over the corresponding conductors of said cable, said contact receiving portions having a contact opening therein through which a portion 5 6 of the corresponding conductor appears for contact pur- References Cited poses, and a plurality of frangible tab portions connect- UNITED STATES PATENTS ing said contact receiving portions, each of said tab por- 2,396,725 3/1946 Thomas 339 176 X tions corresponding with one of said Web portions of said 3 9 2 393 3 1 3 Valach 339 176 mandrel so that said mandrel and said formed member 5 3,149 397 9/1964 M i k 339 176 may be easily-broken apart at the web and tab portions respectively to provide a number of separate contact ter- MARVIN CHAMPION Primary Examinerminations. W. DONALD MILLER, Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2396725 *May 16, 1944Mar 19, 1946Thomas & Betts CorpFlexible strip electrical connector
US3082398 *May 24, 1960Mar 19, 1963Amphenol Borg Electronics CorpElectrical connectors
US3149897 *Aug 29, 1961Sep 22, 1964Hans G MartineckPrinted cable connector
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3612633 *Aug 1, 1969Oct 12, 1971Bloom Charles CShelf support kit
US4054353 *Jan 26, 1976Oct 18, 1977International Telephone And Telegraph IndustriesElectrical equipment unit
US4067637 *Dec 9, 1976Jan 10, 1978Thomas & Betts CorporationElectrical connector
US4176380 *Jan 9, 1978Nov 27, 1979International Business Machines CorporationAdaptive speed/interblock gap control for tape drive
US4895536 *Jul 19, 1988Jan 23, 1990Amp IncorporatedLead frame assembly having severable electrical circuit sections
US4927384 *Apr 17, 1989May 22, 1990Amp IncorporatedFlat wire to round wire electrical interconnect
US5397247 *Jan 25, 1994Mar 14, 1995Yazaki CorporationConnector construction
US5417589 *Jan 10, 1994May 23, 1995Sumitomo Wiring Systems, LtdLinked electrical connectors
US5532907 *Nov 2, 1993Jul 2, 1996International Business Machines CorporationComputer system with improved power bus
US5866848 *Nov 7, 1996Feb 2, 1999International Business Machines CorporationMethod of providing power to a circuit module on a circuit board
US5875101 *Nov 7, 1996Feb 23, 1999International Business Machines CorporationComputer system with improved power bus
US6508661 *Dec 17, 2001Jan 21, 2003Hon Hai Precision Ind. Co., Ltd.Flexible printed circuit connector
US6520810 *Oct 24, 2001Feb 18, 2003Molex IncorporatedConnector system for interconnection with flat flexible circuitry
US7001207 *Jan 16, 2004Feb 21, 2006Tyco Electronics Amp GmbhContinuous ribbon for a cable connector
US7819710Sep 23, 2008Oct 26, 2010Tyco Electronics CorporationTermination cap for terminating an electrical lead directly to a stud of an electrode and an electrode lead assembly containing such termination cap
US7862375Sep 3, 2009Jan 4, 2011Devi A/SElectrical connector for a roll-up heating
US8113874Nov 30, 2009Feb 14, 2012Copper Technologies CompanyExternal quick connect modular plug for a wiring device
US8235748Nov 30, 2009Aug 7, 2012Cooper Technologies CompanyExternal quick connect modular plug for a wiring device
US8251736Sep 23, 2008Aug 28, 2012Tyco Electronics CorporationConnector assembly for connecting an electrical lead to an electrode
US8556652 *Sep 23, 2011Oct 15, 2013Samsung Display Co., Ltd.Flexible printed circuit board assembly and flat panel display apparatus using the same
US8613169Jan 6, 2012Dec 24, 2013MiasoleElectrical routing structures for building integrable photovoltaic arrays
US20120223659 *Sep 23, 2011Sep 6, 2012Kang Chang-WookFlexible printed circuit board assembly and flat panel display apparatus using the same
US20150072565 *Sep 12, 2013Mar 12, 2015Apple Inc.Plug connector having low profile and flexible interconnect
DE2754656A1 *Dec 8, 1977Jun 15, 1978Thomas & Betts CorpModular aufgebaute verbinderanordnung
DE19723249A1 *Jun 3, 1997Dec 10, 1998Siemens AgConnection arrangement for telecommunications modular terminal lead
DE19723251A1 *Jun 3, 1997Dec 10, 1998Siemens AgModular terminal leads arrangement e.g. for personal computer work-place
EP0001555A1 *Sep 18, 1978May 2, 1979Siemens AktiengesellschaftHousing containing a flat cable as cable harness for an internal wiring
EP0056184A1 *Dec 16, 1981Jul 21, 1982THOMAS & BETTS CORPORATION (a New Jersey Corporation)Integral housing insulation-piercing connector
EP0488894A1 *Nov 27, 1991Jun 3, 1992Bull S.A.Connection system for removable device
EP0511474A1 *Mar 6, 1992Nov 4, 1992WILO GmbHElectric connection for an electric motor
Classifications
U.S. Classification439/496, 439/498, 439/937, D13/147, 439/590
International ClassificationH01R12/24
Cooperative ClassificationH01R12/777, Y10S439/937
European ClassificationH01R23/66C